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:: ONU - XX Assemblea Generale (1965):
La XX Assemblea Generale dell’ONU (1965) dichiara "la legittimità della lotta da parte dei popoli sotto oppressione coloniale, per esercitare il loro diritto all' autodeter-
minazione e all'indipendenza".
Inoltre, l'Assemblea invita "tutti gli Stati a fornire assistenza morale e materiale ai movimenti di liberazione nazionale nei territori coloniali".

:: ONU - Risoluzione 1514
"L'Assemblea Generale dichiara che: la soggezione dei popoli a dominio straniero, conquista e asservimento costituisce una negazione dei diritti umani fondamentali, è contraria alla Carta delle Nazioni Unite ed è un impedimento alla promozione della pace e della cooperazione mondiali.
Tutti i popoli hanno diritto all' autodeter-
minazione; in virtù di tale diritto essi devono liberamente determinare il loro status politico e liberamente perseguire il loro sviluppo economico, sociale e culturale".

:: Convenzione di Ginevra, Protocollo Addizionale I (1977):
La lotta armata può essere usata, come ultima risorsa, come mezzo per esercitare il diritto all' autodeter-

:: Tribunale penale internazionale
In base allo Statuto del Tribunale penale internazionale, sono definiti “crimini di guerra”:
(1) attacchi lanciati intenzionalmente contro popolazione civili in quanto tali o contro civili che non prendano direttamente parte alle ostilità;
(4) attacchi lanciati intenzionalmente nella consapevolezza che gli stessi avranno come conseguenza la perdita di vite umane tra la popolazione civile, e lesioni a civili o danni a proprietà civili ovvero danni diffusi duraturi e gravi all’ambiente naturale che siano manifestamente eccessivi rispetto all’insieme dei concreti e diretti i vantaggi militari previsti.

:: Iraq anthem
(click to listen)

Blackwater trial: Four American mercenaries found guilty over 2007 civilian shootings in Baghdad that killed 14 people
Ian Johnston

October 22, 2014 -Four American mercenaries who opened fire into a crowd of unarmed civilians in Baghdad in the apparently mistaken belief they were under attack have been found guilty over the shootings of more than 30 people.A jury in Washington has convicted Nicholas Slatten of first-degree murder over one death. Three of his colleagues, Paul Slough, Evan Liberty and Dustin Heard, were found guilty of the manslaughter of at least 12 people and of the attempted manslaughter of at least 11 others who were injured. All four guards were working for the US security firm then known as Blackwater. Following widespread horror at the shootings, Blackwater changed its name to Xe Services...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110351] [ 02-feb-2015 03:53 ECT ]

Zionist settlers burn Palestinian olive grove
International Solidarity Movement

October 22, 2014 - This morning at approximately 09:30, settlers from the illegal settlement of Yizhar set fire to a Palestinian olive field above Huwwara village, just outside of Nablus. The settlers set the land on fire from the top of the hill. People from the village started fighting the fire, but suddenly the wind turned and the flames started moving towards the illegal settlement on the top of the hill. At this point the settlers started fighting their own fire, to prevent damage to their illegal buildings...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110350] [ 02-feb-2015 03:50 ECT ]

PCHR report: Israeli attacks on fishermen in the Gaza Sea
The Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR)

October 22, 2014 - Israeli Naval forces continued to carry out attacks on Palestinian fishermen in the Gaza Strip during the reporting period (1 – 30 September 2014), including 18 shooting incidents that resulted in the injury of a fishermen while fishing; 4 chasing incidents that led to the arrest of 11 fishermen; and confiscation of 4 fishing boats and 22 pieces of fishing nets belonging to Palestinian fishermen in the Gaza Strip. The Israeli naval forces did not comply with the ceasefire agreement concluded between Israel and Palestinian armed groups under Egyptian auspices on 26 August 2014. This agreement includes allowing Palestinian fishermen to sail within 6 nautical miles in the Gaza Sea. According to PCHR’s investigations, all attacks took place within the distance of 6 nautical miles, which proves that Israeli forces’ policies aim to tighten restrictions on the Gaza Strip’s fishermen and their livelihoods....
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110349] [ 02-feb-2015 03:48 ECT ]

Connecticut arm of million-strong church votes to shun occupation profiteers
Joe Catron

October 22, 2014 - The United Church of Christ in the US state of Connecticut has declared its support for the Palestinian-led campaign for boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) against Israel. A BDS resolution approved by delegates to the annual gathering of the church’s Connecticut conference follows similar moves by its followers in New York, Northern California and in the Central Pacific and Central Atlantic regions. As a result, church bodies have been urged to divest their holdings in companies profiting from Israeli occupation in Palestine, including Caterpillar, Motorola, Hewlett-Packard, G4S and Veolia...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110348] [ 02-feb-2015 03:44 ECT ]

Israeli Naval Forces Escalate Attacks against Palestinian Fishermen in Gaza Sea;5 Fishermen Arrested and Boat Confiscated
The Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR)

October 22, 2014 - Israeli naval forces escalated their attacks against Palestinian fishermen in Gaza waters and increasingly chased Palestinian fishing boats within the limit allowed for fishing. They arrested 5 fishermen and confiscated a boat off al-Sudaniya shore in the Northern Gaza Strip. The Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR) condemns the continued Israeli attacks against Palestinian fishermen in the Gaza Strip and is concerned over the continued targeting of fishermen and their livelihoods. Economic and social rights of fishermen have been violated by the illegal naval blockade imposed by Israeli authorities on the Gaza Sea....
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110347] [ 02-feb-2015 03:41 ECT ]

Yasin, Hakan and Hüseyin

October 22, 2014 - Let's talk about Yasin Börü today. Let's talk about the 16-year-old boy and his friends Hakan Gökgöz, 26, and Hüseyin Dakak, 19 - the three young men who were chased down, surrounded and brutally killed by pro-PKK attackers in Diyarbakır while they were distributing meat to Kurdish refugees who fled Syria on the third day of Eid al-Adha. Yusuf Er, a friend of Yasin, Hakan and Hüseyin, who survived the mob's attack with arm, head and chest injuries said, "We hugged each other before they came for us." They were traveling in a car when they saw an armed group blocking the road. Yusuf said, "We told the attackers we were only distributing food such as meat to the refugees but they accused us of being ISIS [Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham] supporters."...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110346] [ 02-feb-2015 03:19 ECT ]

BBC backs report that omitted killings of Palestinians during Gaza truce
Amena Saleem

October 22, 2014 - The BBC’s obliviousness to the reality of Israeli aggression against Gaza has been staggeringly highlighted in a BBC Trust ruling issued at the beginning of October that endorses a report that completely ignored Israeli violence against Palestinians, including multiple killings of civilians.
The ruling relates to a BBC Online article published on 22 November 2013. The date marked a year and a day since the signing of a ceasefire agreement between Israel and Hamas, which ended an eight-day Israeli assault on Gaza.,,,
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110345] [ 02-feb-2015 03:17 ECT ]

After Killing 2,100 Gazans, Racy IDF Fashion Line Proclaims: “Make Love AND War”
by Richard Silverstein

October 22, 2014 - Never missing an opportunity to shill both for Israel and the almighty shekel, two Israeli entrepreneurs determined now was the opportune moment to launch a military-focussed fashion line. The fact that 2,100 Gazans were killed by the IDF only a few months ago seems not to have entered into their minds. Or perhaps, being Israeli, they actually believed that Operation Protective Edge had burnished the street cred of the army, making it an opportune "hook" for promoting a racy new clothing line....
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110344] [ 02-feb-2015 03:09 ECT ]

In war against ISIL, a fine line between facts and artifacts
by Jessica Holland

October 22, 2014 - ....His speech was a version of the same foreign policy narrative that President Barack Obama has been telling, in which ISIL’s atrocities are stripped of context. Kerry referred to these crimes as "ugly, savage, inexplicable, valueless barbarism" and not the most virulent symptom thus far of two countries that have fallen apart in a mess of poverty, infrastructure failure, corruption and opportunistic power grabs. Bashar Al-Assad, of course, looms large in this picture, but Kerry sandwiched in only one mention of the Syrian president, in relation to his regime’s shelling of an ancient Roman temple, into a catalog of ISIL’s destruction. Assad’s many other, graver crimes don’t fit with the message being shaped, about the urgent need to stop a monstrous terrorist force, which threatens Americans at home as well as the entire Middle East....
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110343] [ 02-feb-2015 03:05 ECT ]

Will Obama Follow Bush Down the Made-Up Torture Loophole?
By Jamil Dakwar, Director, ACLU Human Rights Program

October 22, 2014 - Twenty years ago, the United States ratified an international treaty banning the use of torture and cruelty worldwide. Three successive American presidents, with bipartisan support, threw their weight behind the treaty – Ronald Reagan signed it in 1988, George H.W. Bush approved it, and Bill Clinton signed implementing legislation into law in 1994. But less than a decade later, the administration of George W. Bush took it apart. To justify the torture of prisoners in American custody abroad, the Bush administration decided that the sweeping prohibitions enshrined in the Convention Against Torture, and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment just didn't apply...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110342] [ 02-feb-2015 02:58 ECT ]

For the Israeli media, Gazan lives are little more than expendable
By Haggai Matar

October 22, 2014 - Nearly two months after the end of Operation Protective Edge, the Israeli media refuses to ask the difficult questions. Who decided that killing entire families is now allowed? What is the justification for doing so? And why won’t the army explain why it killed five members of the Joudah family? Why doesn’t anyone care about the Joudah family? Nearly two months have passed since Israeli Air Force pilots bombed their yard in Gaza, killing the mother of the family and four of her children. Until today, the IDF has not published an explanation of the incident. Actually, almost no one has bothered to ask. A mother and four of her children were sitting in their yard and were killed with no prior notice, and the Israeli media doesn’t deem this worthy of a story. Why?...

  continua / continued avanti - next    [110341] [ 16-jan-2015 19:14 ECT ]

Why did Britain recognize Palestine?
Neil Rogall

October 22, 2014 - ON OCTOBER 13, a remarkable vote took place in the British parliament. A motion calling on the government to "recognize the state of Palestine alongside the state of Israel, as a contribution to securing a negotiated two-state solution" was passed by 274 votes to 12.On closer inspection, the vote is less impressive. Less than half the MPs in the House of Commons voted, and most Tories stayed away. Government ministers were ordered not to vote. The motion has no practical or direct effect on government policy. But it was still a symbolic turn of events, and as a symbol, it has several meanings and layers...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110340] [ 16-jan-2015 19:12 ECT ]

Blackwater Founder Remains Free and Rich While His Former Employees Go Down on Murder Charges
By Jeremy Scahill

October 22, 2014 - A federal jury in Washington, D.C., returned guilty verdicts against four Blackwater operatives charged with killing more than a dozen Iraqi civilians and wounding scores of others in Baghdad in 2007.The jury found one guard, Nicholas Slatten, guilty of first-degree murder, while three other guards were found guilty of voluntary manslaughter: Paul Slough, Evan Liberty, and Dustin Heard. The jury is still deliberating on additional charges against the operatives, who faced a combined 33 counts, according to the Associated Press. A fifth Blackwater guard, Jeremy Ridgeway, had already pleaded guilty to lesser charges and cooperated with prosecutors in the case against his former colleagues. The trial lasted ten weeks and the jury has been in deliberations for 28 days...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110339] [ 16-jan-2015 19:09 ECT ]

Syria News - October 21, 2014
Local Coordination Committees of Syria

October 21, 2014 - Local Coordination Committees in Syria by the end of Tuesday 21-10-2014; report 92 people martyred, including 19 children, 9 women and a martyr under torture: 37 martyrs in Dar'aa, 19 martyrs in Damascus and its suburbs,9 martyrs in Idlib,9 martyrs in Aleppo,7 martyrs in Quneitra,6 martyrs in Hama,5 martyrs in Homs...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110338] [ 16-jan-2015 19:06 ECT ]

Video: Settlers cheer as Israeli soldiers attack disabled Palestinian child
Ali Abunimah

October 21, 2014 - This disturbing footage shot by Palestinian videographer Samih Da’na and published by the Israeli nongovernmental organization B’Tselem documents the violent abuse of a developmentally disabled Palestinian child. As Israeli occupation soldiers abuse the child, settlers and their children cheer and shout abuse at Palestinians.Da’na shot the footage on 19 October from his home in the occupied West Bank city of Hebron, whose Palestinian residents are relentlessly targeted by occupation army and settler violence...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110337] [ 01-jan-2015 01:10 ECT ]

How the very concept of human rights has failed Palestinians
By Noam Sheizaf

October 21, 2014 - Certain rights should be inalienable — yet Israel refuses to grant them to Palestinians and the world continues to treat the country as a rights-based democracy. What does this absurdity say about human rights as a political tool, and about the powers, entities and institutions that speak in their name?... Under the military regime, Palestinians can have their private property destroyed or confiscated at the discretion of the military commander (and in most cases don’t even have the right to appeal such decisions); their freedom to travel outside the West Bank, and sometimes even within it, depends on special permits given by the military commander; they cannot build without the approval of the military commander, thousands can be deported from their homes with the stroke of a commander’s pen; every political assembly or protest can be deemed illegal unless it was given the permission of the military commander, and; they can be imprisoned, tortured or even killed without trial or due process...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110336] [ 01-jan-2015 00:56 ECT ]

Baghdad shootout points to growing militia threat
By Ammar Karim

October 21, 2104 - Shortly after midnight, when a curfew usually shrouds the Iraqi capital in silence, the thudding sounds of heavy machinegun fire ripped through the air and echoed across Baghdad.They were not the opening shots of the much-feared attack by the Islamic State (IS) jihadist group, which has been battling government forces a few kilometres (miles) outside Baghdad for months.
Instead, they were a reminder of another kind of threat hanging over Iraq -- a rapidly expanding galaxy of Shiite militias that, while playing a significant part in the fight against IS, challenge government authority and threaten to perpetuate the country's brutal sectarian violence...

  continua / continued avanti - next    [110335] [ 01-jan-2015 00:39 ECT ]

MASS Graves uncovered accidentally unveiling true dangers of iranian backed militias in iraq
Foreign Relations Bureau - Iraq - United Kingdom

October 21, 2014 -As officials struggle on what so say about this new crime, workers in Mahaweel a town north of Babylon province next to Mahaweel Military base uncover what is estimated to be 100 dead bodies of civilians dumped in a mass grave within a sewage treatment facility. Tens of other bodies were also found in sewage pipelines leading to the military base.This Mass grave was discovered accidentally after a child reported seeing a human hand floating on Thursday. Witnesses also stated that some IDs were found with the dead bodies adding further that victims were civilian.The bodies are thought to belong to people who live in the Jurf Al Sakhr areas where militias are highly active against the predominantly sunni population there as sectarian violence and forced migration tactics are used to change the demographics of Baghdad and ints outskirts...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110334] [ 01-jan-2015 00:34 ECT ]

Human Rights Defender Abdallah Abu Rahma receives guilty verdict from military court
International Solidarity Movement

October 21, 2014- On October 21st, Human Rights Defender Abdallah Abu Rahma was found guilty by an Israeli military court of "disturbing a soldier". "Demonstrating against the occupation cannot be a criminal offence. Finding Abdallah guilty only shows that the [Israeli] military force is a tool to perpetuate the occupation." Stated Gabi Lasky, lawyer of Abdallah Abu Rahma, to the International Solidarity Movement (ISM)....
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110333] [ 01-jan-2015 00:29 ECT ]

Will the U.S. Go to "War" Against Ebola?
By Tom Engelhardt & Karen Greenberg

October 21, 2014 - As Karen Greenberg points out today, given an administration already on the ropes over its new war in the Middle East, it would be all too easy for U.S. officials, amid the usual panic, to fall back on that comfortable template of the post-9/11 years, the war on terror, when it comes to Ebola. After all, it’s already enscribed in the DNA of a national security state that is, effectively, a shadow government. So no one should be surprised that Washington's first response to the Ebola crisis was to militarize it. U.S. boots are already on the ground in West Africa and preparations are underway for a possible future call-up of the reserves and the National Guard. In other words, in his initial move to contain Ebola, President Obama sent in the U.S. military, an organization as ill equipped to deal with a pandemic disease as it was to deal with "nation-building" in Afghanistan or Iraq...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110332] [ 01-jan-2015 00:26 ECT ]

Iran Is Forcing Poor Afghans to Fight and Die in Syria
Rebels capture reluctant Afghans in Aleppo

War Is Boring

October 21, 2014 - ...Videotaped interrogations of two of the Afghans the rebels captured in Aleppo reveal that, for them at least, the war isn’t about ideology anymore.The Afghan with bandaged head says he’s from Varamin, an impoverished town near Tehran. He’s an illegal immigrant. Iranian authorities had apprehended him and offered him a monthly payment of $600 to fight in Syria. If he had refused, they would have sent him back to Afghanistan—which for a Shia could mean death.There are an estimated one million illegal immigrants from Afghanistan living in Iran. They and their children can’t enroll in universities or work regular jobs with standard benefits and pay. Afghan immigrants tend to work in construction or as farmers.They live in the poorest neighborhoods, suburbs and villages. Afghan communities in Iran are prone to crime, mainly drug trafficking....
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110331] [ 01-jan-2015 00:20 ECT ]

CIA Agents Reportedly Impersonated Senate Staffers While Torture Report Was Being Produced
By: Kevin Gosztola

October 21, 2014 - CIA agents "impersonated Senate staffers" while the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence was producing its report on the agency’s rendition, detention and interrogation program, according to Huffington Post.
"According to sources familiar with the CIA inspector general report that details the alleged abuses by agency officials," journalists Ali Watkins and Ryan Grim reported, "CIA agents impersonated Senate staffers in order to gain access to Senate communications and drafts of the Intelligence Committee investigation."...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110330] [ 01-jan-2015 00:08 ECT ]

Q&A with Andy Worthington After Screening of “Doctors of the Dark Side” in Balham, October 26, 2014
Andy Worthington

October 21, 2014 - ..."Doctors of the Dark Side," directed by Martha Davis, a clinical psychologist, and narrated by the actress Mercedes Ruehl, explores the role of physicians and psychologists in the torture of prisoners in the "war on terror" — not just the ordinary personnel who served as the foot soldiers of torture, and who continue to do so in their role force-feeding hunger strikers at Guantánamo, but also the more senior individuals who recommended the torture program that was subsequently approved at the highest levels of the Bush administration — men like James Mitchell and Bruce Jessen, psychologists who worked on military programs to teach US personnel to resist torture if captured by a hostile enemy, and who reverse-engineered the techniques they taught for the torture of prisoners in the "war on terror."...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110329] [ 01-jan-2015 00:06 ECT ]

Shaker Aamer’s Abuse in Guantánamo Dismissed by British Foreign Secretary
Andy Worthington

October 21, 2014 In disappointing but predictable news, the British foreign secretary Philip Hammond, who replaced William Hague on July 15 this year, has "dismissed concerns over the abuse" of Shaker Aamer, the last British prisoner in Guantánamo, in a letter to his lawyer Clive Stafford Smith, the founder and director of the legal action charity Reprieve, as described by the charity in a press release. In August, as I explained at the time, Clive Stafford Smith wrote to Philip Hammond after he had "received a series of unclassified letters from various detainees who we represent in Guantánamo Bay," which told "a disturbingly consistent story" — of "a new 'standard procedure’" whereby the FCE team (the armored guards responsible for violently removing prisoners from their cells through "forcible cell extractions") was being "used to abuse the prisoners with particular severity because of the on-going non-violent hunger strike protest against their unconscionable treatment."...

  continua / continued avanti - next    [110328] [ 01-jan-2015 00:03 ECT ]

Mustafa Barghouti: US-Palestinian ties strong
Shlomi Eldar

October 21, 2014 - ... Mustafa Barghouti serves as general secretary of the Palestine National Initiative (PNI) and is president of the Union of Palestinian Medical Relief Committees (UPMRC). In an interview with Al-Monitor, Barghouti acknowledges that following the troubled relationship between the US administration and Israel, the United States has drawn closer to Abbas and the PA. Barghouti feels that the test of the relationship will come on the day that Abbas begins the process for recognition of the Palestinian state in the UN institutions. "The Israeli provocations against John Kerry and President Barack Obama are leaving their mark," Barghouti said. "I assume that the Americans can’t talk much [publicly], but they [are frustrated with] the Israeli government."...

  continua / continued avanti - next    [110327] [ 31-dec-2014 23:54 ECT ]

Gaza Strip: Attacks in the border areas and their consequences
The Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR)

October 21, 2014 - Following disengagement from the Gaza Strip in September 2005, Israel unilaterally and illegally established a so-called "buffer zone", an area prohibited to Palestinians along the land and sea borders of the Gaza Strip. The precise area designated by Israel as a "buffer zone" is not clear and this Israeli policy is typically enforced with live fire. The establishment of the 'buffer zone’ is illegal under both Israeli and international law. Preventing Palestinians from accessing their lands and fishing areas violates numerous provisions of international human rights law, including the right to work, the right to an adequate standard of living, and the right to the highest attainable standard of health. Enforcing the "buffer zone" through the use of live fire often results in, inter alia, the direct targeting of civilians and/or indiscriminate attacks, both of which constitute war crimes.
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110326] [ 28-dec-2014 03:44 ECT ]

Surprise: U.S. Drug War In Afghanistan Not Going Well
By Ryan Devereaux

October 21, 2014 - A new report has found the war on drugs in Afghanistan remains colossally expensive, largely ineffective and likely to get worse. This is particularly true in the case of opium production, says the U.S. Office of the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction. In a damning report released Tuesday, the special inspector general, Justin F. Sopko, writes that "despite spending over $7 billion to combat opium poppy cultivation and to develop the Afghan government’s counternarcotics capacity, opium poppy cultivation levels in Afghanistan hit an all-time high in 2013," hitting 209,000 hectares, surpassing the prior, 2007 peak of 193,000 hectares. Sopko adds that the number should continue to rise thanks to deteriorating security in rural Afghanistan and weak eradication efforts....
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110325] [ 28-dec-2014 03:33 ECT ]

Why We Need International Recognition of the State of Palestine
By Dr. Mustafa Barghouthi

October 21, 2014 - Sweden’s recent responsible decision to officially recognize the State of Palestine was quickly followed by the British Parliament’s vote for similar recognition. The Swedish and British moves, clearly grounded in a desire for peace, are a last-ditch effort to save the two-state solution to the Israel-Palestine conflict. These developments reflect the shift in European public opinion in favor of a free Palestine. The Swedish and British acts, which put new moral pressure on Israel to end the occupation, have created greater space to address a range of unfulfilled Palestinian rights...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110324] [ 24-dec-2014 04:30 ECT ]

Urgent Appeal to Palestinian President and Government: PCHR Warns of Consequences of Fuel Shortage at Gaza Hospitals and Expected Suspension of Health Services at UAE Red Crescent Hospital
The Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR)

October 21, 2014 -The Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR) warns of the disastrous and grave deterioration that may affect the Palestinian patients in the Gaza Strip due to the lack of fuel that is necessary to operate electricity generators as an alternative power supply in light of prolonged outages. PCHR calls upon the Palestinian President and government to immediately intervene to ensure the prompt supply of fuel needed for the operation of generators in health facilities in the Gaza Strip. According to investigations conducted by PCHR, hospitals, clinics and first aid centers suffer a real crisis due to the lack of diesel needed for the operation of generators, especially the UAE Red Crescent Hospital in Rafah, which may stop offering medical services within hours because it has run out of the diesel used for generators...

  continua / continued avanti - next    [110323] [ 23-dec-2014 02:05 ECT ]

Syria News - October 20, 2014
Local Coordination Committees of Syria

October 20, 2014 - By the end of Monday, LCC were able to document 41 martyrs including 5 martyrs under torture, 3 children, and one woman: 10 martyrs reported in Damascus and its Suburbs , 7 martyrs in Daraa , 7 martyrs in Idlib , 6 martyrs in Aleppo , 6 martyrs in Deir Ezzor , 3 martyrs in Homs , 2 martyrs in Hama...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110322] [ 22-dec-2014 02:31 ECT ]

Iraq: Alarming rise in use of death penalty – UN report
United Nations

October 20, 2014 - A report published Sunday by the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI) and the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) documents the alarming rise in executions carried out by Iraq since the restoration of the death penalty in 2005. The report documents that the number of executions carried out in Iraq rose substantially between 2005 and 2009. In 2009, 124 people were executed. Despite a drop in the implementation rate in 2010, the number of executions significantly increased between 2011 and 2013, culminating in the hanging of 177 individuals in 2013. Between 1 January and 30 September 2014 at least 60 people have been executed. Executions are often carried out in batches in Iraq – on one occasion in 2013, up to 34 individuals were executed in a single day...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110321] [ 21-dec-2014 04:34 ECT ]

B’Tselem video: Israeli soldiers blindfold and detain 11 year old disabled child
Annie Robbins

October 20, 2014 - atch as settlers from the Jewish settlement of Kiryat Arba, near Hebron, clap, shout and cheer as an Israeli soldier binds the hands of a child behind his back and fastens a blindfold over his eyes as another soldier stands on guard before they lift the frightened boy into the back of their military jeep enclosing him in darkness as the settlers’ cheering continues. The boy is eleven and developmentally disabled. The scene, captured on video by a B’Tselem volunteer, is another all too familiar scene of life under occupation...

  continua / continued avanti - next    [110320] [ 18-dec-2014 03:10 ECT ]

My Father Was Killed by a Computer, Says 7-Year-Old Afghan Child
Dr. Hakim

October 20, 2014 - Imal, a 7-year-old Afghan student in the 2nd grade, came to visit us in Kabul.As Imal grew up, he kept asking his mother where his father was. His mother finally told Imal that his father had been killed by a drone when he was still a baby.If you could see Imal in this video you would want to hug Imal immediately. If Imal were a white American kid, this tragedy would not have befallen his father. Which American would allow any U.S. citizen to be killed by a foreign drone? ...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110319] [ 18-dec-2014 02:56 ECT ]

The Dark Alliance of Media and Empire: The ‘Dissident’ Smear of Gary Webb
Chris Floyd

October 20, 2014 - I assume that most of the rapidly dwindling number of people who read this blog have already read Tarzie’s takedown of The Intercept’s curiously CIA-slanted smear of Gary Webb, who revealed the Agency’s instrumental involvement in the 1980s crack epidemic that devastated America’s inner cities in order to fund the illegal Contra war in Nicaragua... Anyway, in his original piece, Tarzie committed the increasingly rare sin of genuine journalism by investigating and debunking, point by point, The Intercept’s ugly spin on Webb’s work — work which was later confirmed by the CIA itself. Now Tarzie is back with a follow-up on the continuing disparagement of Webb’s work by the Establishment media (covering its own spotty posterior for its original collaboration with CIA smears) in a new piece, with links to several other important stories on the case. Both pieces are well worth reading, if you haven’t already...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110318] [ 18-dec-2014 02:42 ECT ]

Family of Mohammed Abu Khdeir continues to wait for justice as Israeli court again postpones trial for his killers
Allison Deger

October 20, 2014 -Four months after the grisly slaying of Mohammed Abu Khdeir, his killers faced Jerusalem district court judges today to enter their pleas. Instead of responding to the charges, Yosef Haim Ben-David, the 29-year old settler from the Adam settlement and ringleader of the abduction, and two 16-year-old Israeli accomplices were all granted continuances. The trial was set to begin over the summer, however it was pushed back after defendants switched representation. Today, lawyers for the three accused each presented their own arguments to stymie the court again..
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110317] [ 18-dec-2014 02:39 ECT ]

Israeli Settlers jeapordise the fate of UNESCO heritage site
Ismail Patel

October 20, 2014 - For three weeks, Palestinian Muslims have been denied access to one of the holiest sites in Islam. Al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem has become the site of frequent assaults by occupation forces and efforts to breach the complex by Zionist extremists.Clashes between unarmed protesters and Israeli forces armed with stun grenades, tear gas and rubber coated steel bullets have left dozens of Palestinians wounded, and has resulted in fires that threaten the stability of the 1300 year-old complex. Intent on destroying the mosque and rebuilding the lost Temple of Solomon, more than a thousand Zionist settlers have entered the area in the past week under the protection of the occupation army, and have been given carte blanche to intimidate and harass Palestinians worshipping at the site...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110316] [ 18-dec-2014 02:28 ECT ]

Israeli army shoots and kills 13-year-old Palestinian child
By Emily Mulder

October 20, 2014 - Israeli military forces shot 13-year-old Bahaa Samir Badir in the chest from close range Thursday night. According to eyewitness, Ahmad (name changed for security reasons) the confrontation began after the Israeli army raided Beit Laqiya, a village on the outskirts of Ramallah. A group of boys tried block the road in an attempt to prevent the army jeeps from exiting the village.In response to stones and Molotov cocktails thrown by the group, Israeli soldiers reportedly used sound bombs and tear gas, followed by live fire. As Badir and a group of friends walked home from an after school game of football, they cut onto the main road where the clashes were occurring...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110315] [ 18-dec-2014 02:13 ECT ]

The Obama-Khamenei alliance
By Michael Ledeen

October 20, 2014 - ...President Obama and Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei have arranged a working relationship throughout the Middle East that effectively puts American policy at the service of Iran. Long the goal of Obama, who sent a private emissary to Tehran as early as the 2008 election campaign to tell the Khamenei regime he wanted to be their friend, there is now a de facto alliance between the two countries. Notwithstanding the often nasty rhetoric from the two capitals, the United States is very careful not to challenge Iranian interests in hot spots like Syria, Iraq and Yemen... The Obama administration officially denies it is working closely with Tehran. As Michael Doran has pointed out, the White House and State Department have jumped through very high linguistic hoops to obscure the closeness of U.S.-Iranian coordination..
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110314] [ 18-dec-2014 02:09 ECT ]

“The Alawite Tide Has Exploded” – A “Secular” Song For a “Secular” Regime?
Ben Allinson-Davies

October 20, 2014 - When bearing in mind the allegedly "secular" nature of Bashar al-Assad’s regime… It might also be worth bearing in mind that Assad’s regime has utilised Alawi and Shiite sectarianism for decades (Assad’s own family hails from the Alawite sect, in an attempt to shore up the regime’s power base, and give it a reliable supply of cannon fodder from the minorities, fearful of repression should the regime fall. This it has done with considerable success; frightening Alawites everywhere into believing that evil Sunni terrorists will somehow slaughter them wholesale if it falls. In many Alawite villages, practically every young man has joined regime militias, which, although they ostensibly have a secular, inclusive mentality, are actually vicious Alawite militia which genuinely believe that they are fighting an existential battle, such as the "National Defense Force" or the "Syrian Resistance"...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110313] [ 18-dec-2014 02:03 ECT ]

Palestinian man successfully harvests olives for the first time in 14 years
International Solidarity Movement

October 20, 2014 - Today in al-Khalil (Hebron) Hashem Azzeh, a Palestinian man living in the Tel Rumeida neighborhood was able to successfully harvest his olives, on a certain part of his land, for the first time in 14 years. Hashem and his family live in H2 (the area of Hebron under full Israeli military civil and security control), right next to the illegal settlement in the heart of Tel Rumeida.Since the year 2000, Hashem has applied for a permit from the Israeli authorities to harvest his own olive trees but has been either denied, or received "permission", and had his olives stolen by Zionist settlers. This year, Hashem received a permit to harvest six trees today, and along with his brother and activists from ISM and Christian Peacemakers Team – Palestine (CPT), he began to work on his land. Two colonial settlers soon arrived an attempted to convince the Israeli police and army present that Hashem´s land belonged to them and that he should not be picking olives on "their land"...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110312] [ 18-dec-2014 01:57 ECT ]

Arab fear of the "extended arm of Iran"
By Ali Sadrzadeh

October 20, 2014 - "The Islamic revolution already controls three capital cities. Very soon they will be followed by Yemen's capital; then Saudi Arabia will be next!" Does this sound like the victory announcement of a proud field officer on the brink of the successful conclusion of a military campaign? Or does it sound like the gleeful exclamation of someone who will soon be in possession of all the pieces of his puzzle? On 18 September last, the Iranian parliamentarian Alireza Zakani gathered students from the paramilitary organisation known as the Basij around him in the city of Mashhad in north-eastern Iran to explain to them the Iranian offensive in the region...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110311] [ 17-dec-2014 19:26 ECT ]

US Government Moves to Dismiss Lawsuit Against ‘Suspicious Activity’ Program Which Keeps Files on Innocent People
By: Kevin Gosztola

October 20, 2014 - The United States government has moved to dismiss a lawsuit filed by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) on behalf of five US citizens who say they were victims of a domestic surveillance program, which involves the collection of "suspicious activity reports" on individuals. According to the ACLU’s filed complaint [PDF], a National Suspicious Activity Reporting Initiative (NSI) "encourages state and local law enforcement agencies as well as private actors to collect and report information that has a potential nexus to terrorism in the form of so-called 'suspicious activity reports [SARs].’"...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110310] [ 17-dec-2014 18:55 ECT ]

Israel excluded from war games in Italy following protests
Stephanie Westbrook

October 20, 2014 - The Israeli air force has been removed from the list of armed forces now taking part in multinational military training exercises on the Italian island of Sardinia following a campaign by anti-war activists.During Israel’s deadly 51-day bombing campaign on Gaza in July and August, anti-militarization and Palestine solidarity groups mobilized against the military drills in general, and Israel’s participation in particular.Palestinians in Gaza, standing in the rubble of destroyed homes, posted photographs appealing directly to Italy not to "train the pilots who bombs us."...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110309] [ 16-dec-2014 20:04 ECT ]

ISIS is latest US ‘bogeyman’ to justify regional ‘War on Terror’ strategy: FSA officer

October 20, 2014 - Free Syrian Army officer Colonel Ismail Ammar said in an interview published on Monday that the US-led international coalition’s current actions in Kobani aim to involve in Turkey in a strategy aimed not at weakening or overthrowing the Assad regime but at making it the primary beneficiary of coalition airstrikes. In the interview with a Kuwaiti newspaper, Col. Al-Ammar (pictured) said that the ISIS is the international community’s current scapegoat of choice, adding that the group is the creation of the Assad regime, which continues to coordinate closely with US and other nations’ intelligence agencies, with Washington needing a 'bogeyman’ like the ISIS in the Middle East in order to implement its 'War on Terror’ strategies for the region....
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110308] [ 16-dec-2014 03:51 ECT ]

Israeli Attacks on Fishermen in the Gaza Sea
The Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR)

October 20, 2014 - Israeli Naval forces continued to carry out attacks on Palestinian fishermen in the Gaza Strip during the reporting period[1] (1 – 30 September 2014), including 18 shooting incidents that resulted in the injury of a fishermen while fishing; 4 chasing incidents that led to the arrest of 11 fishermen; and confiscation of 4 fishing boats and 22 pieces of fishing nets belonging to Palestinian fishermen in the Gaza Strip. The Israeli naval forces did not comply with the ceasefire agreement concluded between Israel and Palestinian armed groups under Egyptian auspices on 26 August 2014. This agreement includes allowing Palestinian fishermen to sail within 6 nautical miles in the Gaza Sea. According to PCHR's investigations, all attacks took place within the distance of 6 nautical miles, which proves that Israeli forces' policies aim to tighten restrictions on the Gaza Strip's fishermen and their livelihoods...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110307] [ 16-dec-2014 03:38 ECT ]

For near identical crimes, an Israeli and a Palestinian’s fate couldn’t be more different
By John Brown* (translated by Sol Salbe)

October 20, 2014 - Three months ago, on July 25, Raed al Jabari, a 35-year-old a father of five, was driving on Route 60 through the West Bank. He apparently fell asleep at the wheel (having earlier taken painkillers). Near the Gush Etzion Junction he hit a woman standing on the road. The woman was slightly injured. Immediately afterwards, he veered sharply back onto the road and turned himself in to Israeli authorities. There he explained what is outlined above. Al Jabari was arrested and taken to the Ofer military prison. He was brought to the military court within the complex, where in light of these facts, the military judge released him on NIS 8,000 bail ($2140), having decided that he was not dangerous and his action wasn’t a deliberate terrorist act...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110306] [ 16-dec-2014 03:26 ECT ]

Gaza and the Bipartisan War on Human Rights
by Stephen Zunes

October 20, 2014 - Israel’s seven weeks of attacks this summer on heavily populated civilian neighborhoods in Gaza has led to unprecedented concern among Americans who, while still broadly supportive of Israel, found the attacks to be disproportionate and unnecessary. Close to 1,500 Palestinian civilians in Gaza were killed in the Israeli attacks – more of 500 of whom were children – and 18,000 homes were destroyed, leaving over 100,000 people homeless. Despite this devastating civilian toll, leading Democrats in Washington have joined Republicans in claiming that Israel’s actions were legitimate acts of self-defense against military targets, dismissing reports by reputable Israeli and international human rights groups saying otherwise...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110305] [ 16-dec-2014 03:04 ECT ]

IS, coalition, regime: 'They're all criminals'
Syria Direct

October 20, 2014 - Since beginning airstrikes across Syria in August, the US-led international coalition has focused heavily on the Islamic State-controlled Iraqi border town of Al-Bokamel, which sits between Syria's Deir e-Zor and Iraq's Anbar provinces. There, coalition airstrikes targeted, among other locations, oil fields and refineries, paralyzing economic activity in a town whose residents rely on fuel supplies for personal business, Abu Zeid Abdullah, a member of the Syrian LCC Union, the umbrella group for the country's local coordination committes, told Syria Direct's Mohammed al-Haj Ali earlier this month.Now, Abdullah says the coalition is targeting grain silos and mills. For Syrians living in these towns, the airstrikes are part of a larger plan to destroy Syria....
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110304] [ 16-dec-2014 02:46 ECT ]

Syria News - October 19, 2014
Local Coordination Committees of Syria

October 19, 2014 - By the end of Saturday, LCC were able to document 49 martyrs including 6 martyrs under torture, 2 children, and one woman: 17 martyrs reported in Aleppo; 10 in Hama; 9 in Daraa; 9 in Damascus and its Suburbs; 6 in Idlib; 3 in Deir Ezzor and 3 in Homs....
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110303] [ 15-dec-2014 05:08 ECT ]

Identities of minors who admitted to killing Mohammed Abu Khdeir to be revealed Monday
Allison Deger

October 19, 2014 - On Monday three Israelis who admitted to the killing of Mohammed Abu Khdeir, the 16-year old Palestinian who was burned to death over the summer after being abducted from behind his East Jerusalem home in a revenge killing for the unrelated kidnapping and slaying of three Israeli youths a month prior, will give their pleas in district court.Yosef Haim Ben-David, a 29-year old settler is expected to plea insanity and is the assumed ringleader. The other defendants identities have been sealed by a gag order as they are minors. However, an Israeli judge will allow media and the public to attend tomorrow’s hearing, in effect lifting the ban on concealing their identities...

  continua / continued avanti - next    [110302] [ 13-dec-2014 02:49 ECT ]

Los Angeles activists block unloading of Israeli cargo ship for two days
Charlotte Silver

October 19, 2014 - The Block the Boat coalition of Los Angeles claimed another victory this weekend after an Israeli cargo ship, the Zim Savannah, delayed docking at the port of Long Beach for at least 34 hours. Cookie Partansky, an organizer with the LA Block the Boat coalition, told The Electronic Intifada that approximately 150 activists gathered at the Los Angeles port at 6am on Saturday, 18 October. The morning’s action followed weeks of communication with the longshoremen’s union and educating workers about Israel’s brutal occupation of Palestine, as well as the group’s reasons for targeting Zim, an Israeli shipping line...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110301] [ 13-dec-2014 02:38 ECT ]

Obama Could Reaffirm a Bush-Era Reading of a Treaty on Torture

October 19, 2014 - When the Bush administration revealed in 2005 that it was secretly interpreting a treaty ban on "cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment" as not applying to C.I.A. and military prisons overseas, Barack Obama, then a newly elected Democratic senator from Illinois, joined in a bipartisan protest....But the Obama administration has never officially declared its position on the treaty, and now, President Obama’s legal team is debating whether to back away from his earlier view. It is considering reaffirming the Bush administration’s position that the treaty imposes no legal obligation on the United States to bar cruelty outside its borders, according to officials who discussed the deliberations on the condition of anonymity....
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110300] [ 13-dec-2014 02:02 ECT ]

Edward Snowden and the Golden Age of Spying
A TomDispatch Interview With Laura Poitras

Tom Engelhardt

October 19, 2014 - Here’s a Ripley’s Believe It or Not! stat from our new age of national security. How many Americans have security clearances? The answer: 5.1 million, a figure that reflects the explosive growth of the national security state in the post-9/11 era. Imagine the kind of system needed just to vet that many people for access to our secret world (to the tune of billions of dollars). We’re talking here about the total population of Norway and significantly more people than you can find in Costa Rica, Ireland, or New Zealand. And yet it’s only about 1.6% of the American population, while on ever more matters, the unvetted 98.4% of us are meant to be left in the dark....
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110299] [ 12-dec-2014 02:47 ECT ]

Anti-semitism charge is increasingly being leveled against Israel’s mainstream critics
Philip Weiss

October 19, 2014 - Maybe you saw that a top minister in Israel’s government accused John Kerry, the US secretary of state, of anti-Semitism? John Kerry made the mistake of saying that if only Israel made peace with the Palestinians, that would cut down on extremism in the region. From Haaretz: Economy Minister Naftali Bennett attacked U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry over his comments Friday connecting the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and extremism in the Middle East. "It turns out that even when a British Muslim decapitates a British Christian, there will always be someone to blame the Jew," he said.....

  continua / continued avanti - next    [110298] [ 12-dec-2014 02:19 ECT ]

Foreign Secretary ignores concerns over Guantanamo Brit abuse


October 19, 2014 - Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond has dismissed concerns over the abuse of British cleared detainee Shaker Aamer, in a letter to his lawyer at human rights charity Reprieve. In August 2014 Clive Stafford Smith wrote to the Foreign Secretary after a fellow detainee had described what he called a new 'standard procedure’ of abuses at the prison. Yemeni Emad Hassan, cleared for release and detained without charge since 2002, wrote that "an FCE [Forcible Cell Extraction, where a team of guards in riot gear manhandle a detainee] team has been brought in to beat the detainees […] On Sunday, Shaker ISN 239 was beaten when the medical people wanted to draw blood."...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110297] [ 12-dec-2014 02:14 ECT ]

The Reign of ‘Terror’
By Tomis Kapitan

October 19, 2014 - ... Even when a definition is agreed upon, the rhetoric of "terror" is applied both selectively and inconsistently. In the mainstream American media, the "terrorist" label is usually reserved for those opposed to the policies of the U.S. and its allies. By contrast, some acts of violence that constitute terrorism under most definitions are not identified as such — for instance, the massacre of over 2000 Palestinian civilians in the Beirut refugee camps in 1982 or the killings of more than 3000 civilians in Nicaragua by "contra" rebels during the 1980s, or the genocide that took the lives of at least a half million Rwandans in 1994. At the opposite end of the spectrum, some actions that do not qualify as terrorism are labeled as such — that would include attacks by Hamas, Hezbollah or ISIS, for instance, against uniformed soldiers on duty. ...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110296] [ 12-dec-2014 02:02 ECT ]

Podcast: Guantanamo Prisoner’s Attorney on Importance of Public Seeing Videos of His Forced-Feedings
By: Kevin Gosztola

October 19, 2014 - Guantanamo prisoner Abu Wa’el Dhiab has been pursuing a lawsuit against President Barack Obama’s administration to force the government stop using force-feeding to punish him while he is on hunger strike and protesting against his continued indefinite detention, even though he has been cleared for release. There were legal proceedings in recent weeks, where a federal judge heard testimony about his treatment. The lawyers filed a "post-trial brief" on October 17, which argued that Dhiab has suffered an "unacceptable and unconstitutional degree of cruelty and incompetence" by authorities who have "sought to suppress" Dhiab’s "peaceful protest by causing him gratuitous pain."...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110295] [ 12-dec-2014 01:52 ECT ]

Appointment of Iraq’s new interior minister opens door to militia and Iranian influence
By Loveday Morris

October 19, 2014 - Iraq’s parliament voted Saturday to put an affiliate of an Iranian-backed paramilitary group in charge of a key security ministry, a move that could strike a serious blow to efforts to unite Sunnis and Shiites to wrest back their country from Islamist extremists. The new interior minister is Mohammed Ghabban, a little-known Shiite politician with the Badr Organization. But there is little doubt that Hadi al-Amiri, head of the party and its military wing, will wield the real power in the ministry. The Badr militia ran notorious Shiite death squads during Iraq’s sectarian war, after infiltrating the Interior Ministry. A leaked 2009 State Department cable said sources had indicated that Amiri may have personally ordered attacks on up to 2,000 Sunnis. Amiri has denied such allegations...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110294] [ 11-dec-2014 03:00 ECT ]

Most Jewish Israelis oppose Palestinian state, new poll shows
By Mairav Zonszein

October 19, 2014 - A large majority of Jewish Israeli citizens (74 percent) oppose the establishment of a Palestinian state along the pre-1967 borders, according to a new poll conducted by the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs, a right-wing think tank. The organization also found that 76 percent oppose a Palestinian state if it means dividing Jerusalem. The poll surveyed 505 Jewish Israelis, dividing them along their personal political orientation. Three hundred and four identified themselves as right wing, 125 as centrists and 68 as left wing. It is interesting to note that of those who consider themselves "centrists," 63 percent oppose a Palestinian state along the pre-1967 border, compared with only 19 percent who identify as left...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110293] [ 11-dec-2014 01:47 ECT ]

Oslo is dead! Long live Oslo! The UK House of Commons Supports Diplomatic Recognition of Palestine
Richard Falk

October 19, 2014 -On October 13 the House of Commons by an overwhelming vote of 274-12 urged the British government to extend diplomatic recognition to Palestine. At first glance, it would seem a rather meaningless gesture. It is a non-binding resolution, and Prime Minister David Cameron has already declared that this expression of parliamentary opinion will have no effect whatever on existing government policy. So far Britain along with the states in Western Europe adhere to Israel’s stubborn insistence, echoed by Washington, that Palestinian statehood can only be established through a solution to the conflict negotiated by the parties. Even if the British vote was binding, why should it be seen as a dramatic move in Palestine’s favor? After all, Palestine has already been accorded recognition by 134 states since Yasir Arafat declared the existence of a Palestinian state within 1967 borders back in 1988...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110292] [ 11-dec-2014 00:54 ECT ]

Syria News - October 18, 2014
Local Coordination Committees of Syria

October 18, 2014 - By the end of Saturday, LCC were able to document 44 martyrs 2 women, a child and 5 martyrs under torture: 10 martyre reported in Aleppo; 10 in Hama; 7 in Idlib; 6 in Daraa; 5 in Deir Ezzor; 5 in Damascus and its Suburbs; and 1 in Homs....
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110291] [ 11-dec-2014 00:47 ECT ]

Military Resistance 12J3 ISIS Strikes Inside Baghdad
Thomas F. Barton

October 18, 2014 - An Iraqi MP and prominent militia leader was one of at least 21 people killed Tuesday in a bombing immediately claimed by the Islamic State jihadist group.Ahmed al-Khafaji, a commander in the Shiite Badr militia, was among those killed in the attack in the Kadhimiyah area, a fellow lawmaker and a medical official said. The attack, which wounded at least another 51 people, was the third in the Shiite district of Kadhimiyah in four days. In a statement posted online, the Islamic State jihadist group said that a bomber it identified as Abu Aisha al -Samarraie had carried out the attack and that Khafaji was the target...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110290] [ 10-dec-2014 22:19 ECT ]

Epidemic of Birth Defects in Iraq
Carol Dudek

October 18, 2014 - On Tuesday, Oct. 14, Columbia University's School of Public Health hosted a presentation by two prominent researchers who have been documenting the shocking increase of birth defects and cancers in newborns in Iraq after bombardments by the US and its coalition. Dr Mozhgan Savabieasfahani of the University of Michigan's School of Public Health is an environmental toxicologist. She has written two dozen articles and a book, Pollution and Reproductive Damage. Dr Muhsin Al-Sabbak is the Chief of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Basra Maternity Hospital.Dr Al-Sabbak opened the discussion with slides of newborns who had devastating birth defects: the infants bore hydrocephalus, severe cleft palate, webbed neck, no toes or fingers, no rear skull and the brain outside the head, bright red skin that looked burnt, no kidneys...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110289] [ 10-dec-2014 21:59 ECT ]

US-Led Airstrikes Against IS Kills 10 Civilians in Syria: Syrian Observatory
RIA Novosti

October 18, 2014 - The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights announced Saturday that at least 10 Syrian civilians, among them children, were killed by airstrikes in the US-led coalition against Islamic State (IS). According to the observatory, the airstrikes targeting oil fields near the Kabiba village killed three people, one under the age of 18 in the far north east Hasakah province, while seven were killed by strikes targeting a gas station in a city in the eastern part of Syria, Der-Ezzor....
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110288] [ 10-dec-2014 21:32 ECT ]

Palestinians lack strong strategy to face Israeli settlements
Ahmad Melhem

October 18, 2014 - On Sept. 16, Haaretz published the Israeli plan to deport Palestinian Bedouins from the E1 area of occupied Jerusalem, and move them to a town that would be named Nuwema Hill, north of Jericho.Around 12,500 Palestinians are going to be affected by this project, which has stirred the ire of the Palestinians due to the grave repercussions they would have to endure, especially in Jerusalem and its surroundings.This project comes within a series of Israeli plans for the E1 area, which aims to take over 12,000 acres of land located between Jerusalem and the Dead Sea....
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110287] [ 10-dec-2014 19:01 ECT ]

Palestinian boy fatally shot by Israeli forces
Defence for Children International Palestine

October 18, 2014 - Israeli forces fatally shot a 12-year-old boy in the chest on Thursday evening in Beit Liqya. Baha Eldeen Samir Bader, 12, was killed by a bullet to his chest after Israeli soldiers raided Beit Liqya, southwest of Ramallah, on the evening of Thursday, October 16. Israeli soldiers bombarded the village with tear gas and ammunition."Israeli forces continue to fire live ammunition at Palestinian children, killing them with impunity," said Ayed Abu Eqtaish, Accountability Program Director at DCI-Palestine. "Israeli soldiers consistently violate their own live-fire regulations and know that they will not be held accountable for their actions no matter what the result."According to eyewitness testimonies collected by DCI-Palestine, three Israeli military jeeps entered Beit Liqya at around 5:00 pm on Thursday afternoon. The raid resulted in a confrontation between Israeli soldiers and local youths...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110286] [ 10-dec-2014 18:34 ECT ]

The Problem with CNN Hosts Talking About Islam Promoting Violence & Claiming “We’re Just Asking Questions”
By: Kevin Gosztola

October 18, 2014 - For well over a month now, CNN has pushed a conversation about whether there is something inherently violent about Islam or whether the religion promotes violence. Conversation has been presented by anchors, particularly Don Lemon, as just hosts asking questions for the sake of some innocent and potentially educational discussion. The problem is CNN is not simply asking questions and no one is learning anything. And the network is framing segments around questions that are driven by uninformed and bigoted attitudes toward Muslims. On September 29, writer and scholar on religions, Reza Aslan, appeared as a guest to talk about what CNN referred to as "a complicated question that many people are asking. Are Muslim countries more violent than others?"...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110285] [ 10-dec-2014 18:23 ECT ]

Israel Planning Mass Expulsion of Bedouins from West Bank
By Mel Frykberg

October 18, 2014 - - Thirty-year-old Naifa Youssef and 50 other members of her Bedouin community live a precarious life, eking out a hand-to-mouth existence alongside the main road which links Jerusalem with the Dead Sea and the ancient city of Jericho.Home for this community, east of Jerusalem, comprises a collection of shanty structures and hovels as well as tents erected on the rugged and rocky hills which line the road.These makeshift homes are not connected to the electricity grid or to water and waste infrastructure. In winter the bitter cold rain and howling winds creep into the structures while mud and sewerage build up in pools around the tents.Water has to be purchased and brought in by hand from the nearest village of Anata, a 15-minute and 5-km taxi journey away costing about two dollars per person...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110283] [ 10-dec-2014 01:47 ECT ]

How the Israeli media covers massacres: Lessons from 1953
By John Brown

October 18, 2014 - At 9:30 p.m. on the night of October 14, 1953, soldiers from Israel’s Paratroopers Unit as well as Commando Unit 101 fired mortars at the West Bank villages (then under Jordanian control) of Qibya and Ni’lin. Following the barrage, over 130 soldiers swarmed Qibya, laying down land mines on the outskirts of the village in order to prevent Jordanian troops from accessing it. Israeli forces then destroyed 45 homes and killed 69 people, most of them in cold blood by throwing grenades, including those who attempted to flee for their lives. Many were killed under the rubble of their own homes. Approximately two thirds of those killed were women and children. The soldiers received the following order from then-commander Ariel Sharon: "The intention: Attack and conquer the village of Qibya, with maximum damage to humans and property." The massacre took place in the wake of the murder of three Israelis in the Israeli town Yehud...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110282] [ 10-dec-2014 00:01 ECT ]

Sunni tribesmen and Houthi fighters clash in Yemen, eight dead

October 18, 2014- At least eight people were killed in heavy fighting between Sunni Muslim tribesmen and Shi'ite Houthi rebels in central Yemen on Friday, as the battle crept closer to an al Qaeda stronghold, increasing fears of outright sectarian warfare.The Houthi rebels established themselves as Yemen's new powerbrokers last month, capturing Sanaa on Sept. 21 to little resistance from residents or from the weak administration of President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi.Their ascendance has angered al Qaeda, which views Shi'ites as heretics and Houthis as pawns of Iran. Last week, the Yemen-based al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) claimed a suicide bombing on a Houthi gathering that killed at least 47 people...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110281] [ 08-dec-2014 19:10 ECT ]

Anti-gay Christian group threatens to sue hotel for hosting scholars who endorse Israel boycott
Charlotte Silver

Octoober 18, 2014 - The American Center for Law and Justice, a Christian, right-wing legal organization, has written to a Los Angeles hotel warning it against hosting the American Studies Association’s annual meeting next month. The letter, addressed to the general manager of the Westin Bonaventure Hotel & Suites, argues that by passing a resolution in support of the boycott of Israeli academic institutions, the American Studies Association (ASA) will practice "unlawful discrimination" over who is permitted to attend the meeting, scheduled to take place 4-9 November...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110280] [ 08-dec-2014 19:02 ECT ]

Syria News - October 17, 2014
Local Coordination Committees of Syria

October 17, 2014 - By the end of Friday, LCC has documented the fall of 66 martyrs including 8 children, 6 women and 4 martyrs under torture. 29 martyrs were reported in Damascus and its suburbs, 9 in Idlib, 9 in Aleppo, 7 in Daraa, 5 in Deir Ezzor, 3 in Hasaka, 2 in Hama and 2 others in Homs...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110279] [ 07-dec-2014 04:28 ECT ]

Gitmo force-feeding manual reveals gruesome practices
by Clare Algar

October 17, 2014 - Last week the U.S. government submitted to the District Court in Washington, D.C., the most recent standard operating procedures (SOPs) for force-feeding in the Guantánamo Bay detention facility. What remains of the documents, after redactions, is a shameful exercise in doublespeak that attempts to disguise what is really happening in the prison. The SOPs were submitted in a case brought by Abu Wa’el Dhiab, an inmate represented by Reprieve, the international human rights organization that I head. Dhiab is a 43-year-old Syrian and father of four who has been held without trial or charge in Guantánamo for 12 years...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110278] [ 05-dec-2014 22:52 ECT ]

Blowing the Whistle on CIA Torture from Beyond the Grave
By Cora Currier

October 17, 2014 - In the fall of 2006, Nathaniel Raymond, a researcher with the advocacy group Physicians for Human Rights, got a call from a man professing to be a CIA contractor. Scott Gerwehr was a behavioral science researcher who specialized in "deception detection," or figuring out when someone was lying. Gerwehr told Raymond "practically in the first five minutes" that he had been at the U.S. prison at Guantanamo in the summer of 2006, but had left after his suggestion to install video-recording equipment in detainee interrogation rooms was rejected. "He said, 'I wouldn’t operate at a facility that didn’t tape. It protects the interrogators and it protects the detainees,’" Raymond recalls....
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110277] [ 05-dec-2014 22:45 ECT ]

Phantoms of the past: Britain’s vote on Palestine is a nonstarter
Ramzy Baroud

October 17, 2014 - It would be intellectually dishonest to reflect on the British House of Commons’ vote of Monday, 13 October, on a Palestinian state without digging deeper into history. Regardless of the meaning of the non-binding motion, the parliamentary action cannot be brushed off as just another would-be country to recognise Palestine, as was the Swedish government decision on 3 October. Unlike Sweden, and most of the 130 plus countries to effectively recognise Palestine, Britain is a party in the Middle East’s most protracted conflict. In fact, if it were not for Britain, there would be no conflict, or even Israel, of which to speak. It is within this context that the British vote matters, and greatly so.....

  continua / continued avanti - next    [110276] [ 05-dec-2014 03:52 ECT ]

Judge rejects US call for anonymous jury in trial of Palestinian-American
Ali Abunimah

October 17, 2014 - A federal judge has rejected a government request for an anonymous jury in the upcoming trial of Palestinian-American Rasmea Odeh.This was one of two setbacks for the prosecution. But Judge Gerswhin A. Drain granted a government request for "partial sequestration" of the jury – meaning they will be brought to court from an off-site location to ensure they do not see demonstrations by Odeh’s supporters outside the courthouse. Drain’s ruling came in response to a bizarre government motion filed earlier this month that the public protests outside the Detroit federal courthouse during pretrial hearings in the case were part of a potentially "criminal" attempt at "jury tampering."...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110275] [ 05-dec-2014 02:23 ECT ]

We Still Have Little Idea Who We’ve Been Killing with Drones in Pakistan
Scott Shackford

October 17, 2014 - The London-based Bureau of Investigative Journalism has been working to identify those who have been killed in Pakistan by American drone strikes and any groups with whom they were affiliated. The latest news from their project, titled "Naming the Dead," is that only four percent of the 2,379 people killed in 400 drone strikes in the country since 2004 can be identified as al Qaeda. That's just 84 people. Another 295 were identified as other "militants," and even that designation might be a little iffy...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110274] [ 04-dec-2014 18:53 ECT ]

Olive trees burned as anti-Palestinian incitement grips Galilee
Patrick O. Strickland

October 17, 2014 - Osama Tannous has long campaigned for the municipal independence of Tarshiha, his hometown in the Galilee region of present-day Israel. For decades, Tarshiha has been administratively connected to the neighboring Jewish-Israeli community of Maalot and the two share a municipality. On all government records, paperwork and tax documents, the two have, since 1963, been classified as the town of Maalot Tarshiha. Yet the communities are geographically separated and local Palestinians have been campaigning for independent representation and municipal sovereignty for decades...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110272] [ 04-dec-2014 04:19 ECT ]

Ethnic Cleansing by All Means: The real Israeli ‘peace’ policy
Ilan Pappé and Samer Jaber

October 17, 2014-The pine trees in Palestine appeared with the establishment of the state of Israel. The pine is generally a European species which before the 20th century was not seen in the Middle East. It was brought to Palestine by the Zionist settlers for two main reasons. First, it gave the new Jewish settlers the feeling that the place they had migrated to was somehow part of Europe. And if Palestine were to be 'Europeanized’ in such a manner it would also be 'civilized’ — the inferior local population would be replaced by a superior one. Thus Zionism was not just a redemption of an ancient land, it was also the revitalization of what in their eyes was an Arabian desert both ecologically and culturally....
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110271] [ 04-dec-2014 04:11 ECT ]

Iran’s Dangerous Game in Yemen
Amir Taheri

October 17, 2014 - ...
Today, Yemen is on the edge of humanitarian tragedy. It is effectively divided into at least four segments: the north where Houthis form the biggest armed group; Aden and part of the south, where the secessionists of the Al-Hirak movement have most of the guns; the Hadhramaut, where jihadists linked to Al-Qaeda are on the rampage; and finally, a few isolated pockets where tribal chiefs still exercise some authority. The nation is dependent on foreign aid for 90 percent of its food and almost all of its medical needs. Almost all of foreign aid has now been diverted to emergency operations and, yet, the prospect of mass famine looms larger. What is needed are urgent efforts to create breathing room to prevent the tragedy of total systemic collapse. The United Nations should take the lead by calling on all concerned to at least stop pouring more oil on the fire....
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110270] [ 04-dec-2014 04:09 ECT ]

After summer of horror, Gaza families face winter in cramped shacks
Rami Almeghari

October 17, 2014 - Ned’a al-Najjar — also known as Um Ayman — cannot access the clothes she has bought for the baby she is expecting. They are buried under the rubble of her house, which Israel bombed during the summer.As her pregnancy becomes more advanced, she spends much of her time trying to keep her temporary home — a cramped metal shack — as clean as possible.Um Ayman and her husband have three children, including twin girls. The latter are blind. Their shack has two small rooms...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110269] [ 04-dec-2014 03:24 ECT ]

As Kerry scrambles to prevent Palestinian action at UN, Israeli govt makes clear it will never accept Palestinian state
Allison Deger

October 17, 2014 - Palestinians leaders will likely table a United Nations Security Council resolution calling for an Israeli deadline to set borders based on the pre-June 1967 line until after fall mid-term elections in the United States. Haartez’s Barak Ravid reports this week that while Palestinians have stalled, Secretary of State John Kerry is trying to prevent the initiative all together. As a last-ditch effort to stop the Palestinian plan, Kerry has sought to reprise his direct talks that collapsed earlier this year. Israeli officials abandoned that effort after the announcement of a Palestinian unity government and there are no signs they are interested in restarting talks...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110268] [ 04-dec-2014 02:44 ECT ]

Neoliberal Economics Comes to Iran

October 17, 2014 - ...President Rouhani and his economic advisors’ perceptions that the solution to Iran’s economic problems lies in an unrestrained integration into world capitalism and a wholesale privatization of the Iranian economy is overly optimistic. Abundant and irrefutable evidence shows that, during the past several decades, neoliberalism’s dismantlement of socialist, social-democratic and other welfare state economies across the world has invariably led to drastic declines in employment, wages and living standards of the overwhelming majority of the people, thereby further aggravating poverty and inequality on a global level. In many "developing" countries that are integrated into globalized neoliberal capitalism, the living conditions of the majority of their citizens have, in fact, deteriorated....
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110267] [ 04-dec-2014 02:23 ECT ]

Under cover of reconstruction, UN and PA become enforcers of Israel’s Gaza siege
Ali Abunimah

October 17, 2014 - Details given in a confidential briefing this week confirm that the UN has agreed to become the chief enforcer of Israel’s ongoing siege of Gaza. Under the guise of reconstruction, the UN will be monitoring and gathering private information about Palestinian households to be passed onto Israel, which will have a veto over which families get aid to rebuild their homes.This was presented as part of an effort to try to entrench and legitimize the Israeli-backed Ramallah-based Palestinian Authority of Mahmoud Abbas in Gaza. Under the arrangements, Israel will be given even more intrusive control over the lives of Palestinians in Gaza, who will be subjected to onerous ongoing monitoring as they try to rebuild their houses, communities and lives following Israel’s summer massacre...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110266] [ 04-dec-2014 01:27 ECT ]

California Leads the Way in the “Block the Boat” Movement

October 17, 2014 -A new phase is developing in the US Palestinian solidarity movement: Block the Boat. In organizing theory, activists often emphasize the importance of formulating what they call an "escalation plan." When pushing for social change, they explain, it is important that one’s methods of exerting pressure on power slowly grow in strength, not remain stagnant. Block the Boat is the next step in the escalation plan of US Palestinian solidarity activists. The idea of Block the Boat is quite simple: Hundreds of activists organize a protest in a local dock and prevent Israeli ships from unloading cargo...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [110265] [ 04-dec-2014 01:19 ECT ]

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