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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)

Iraq snapshot - September 27, 2014
The Common Ills

September 27, 2014. Chaos and violence continue, US bombing kills civilians in Iraq, Iraqi military continues to bomb residential areas in Falluja, Barack's 'plan' is a bust the same way the 'surge' was, England wants a piece of it and its not the only country that does, Haider al-Abadi's window of opportunity continues to close, and much more... Friday, NINA reported 3 civilians are dead and nine more injured. In addition, Iraqi Spring MC noted Falluja General Hospital received the corpses of 2 children and eight more people who were injured from last night's bombings of the residential neighborhoods. And how were Friday prayers in Anbar celebrated? With more civilian bombings....And NINA notes a Friday Mosul bombing by US war planes killed 4 civilians...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109964] [ 31-oct-2014 02:28 ECT ]

Iranian Revolutionary Guard, Hezbollah assist Houthis in Sana’a: intelligence source
Arafat Madabish

September 27, 2014 — Forces with links to Iran and Shi’ite Lebanese militia Hezbollah are helping Houthi rebels to strengthen their hold on the Yemeni capital Sana’a, intelligence sources told Asharq Al-Awsat. "Elements affiliated with Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and Hezbollah, who were training Houthis in the north of Yemen, are currently present in the capital Sana’a," an intelligence source, who requested anonymity because he was not permitted to brief the media, told Asharq Al-Awsat. Following a month of protests against Yemen’s central government, Houthi militants last week gained control of key government buildings in Sana’a and looted the homes of top government officials....
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109963] [ 30-oct-2014 22:31 ECT ]

Iranian president gives qualified support for western action against Isis
Julian Borger

September 27, 2014 - The Iranian president, Hassan Rouhani, gave qualified support to western military action against Isis inside Iraq, saying a concerted campaign could be successful as long as it was requested by the Iraqi government. Speaking to journalists in New York while attending the UN general assembly, Rouhani appeared to draw a sharp distinction between Syria, where the Assad regime had not been informed of US air strikes, let alone asking for them; and Iraq, where the new government has formally called for military assistance. He criticised western states for responding late to Iraq’s call for help, claiming Iran had been the first to come to its defence and helped prevent Irbil and Baghdad falling to Isis. He also questioned the value of relying on aerial power alone...

  continua / continued avanti - next    [109961] [ 30-oct-2014 05:54 ECT ]

Is Sunni terrorism haram and Shiite terrorism halal?
By Dr. Faisal al Qassem

September 27, 2014 - There is now a widespread perception in the Islamic world generally and in the Arab world in particular that the first and last target of the supposed international campaign to combat terrorism is Sunni Muslims alone and no other group. Adding insult to injury and confirming Sunni fears, the New York Times front page headline a few days ago stated "US aircraft and international coalition forces targeting Sunni terrorists in Syria and Iraq’. This seems to suggest that the Shiite militias wreaking havoc, destruction and slaughter in Syria, Iraq and elsewhere are mere fluffy lambs. Certainly nobody in Western media ever mentions the Shiite fighters, who appear to have been completely excluded from the recent decisions issued by the UN Security Council to combat terrorism by limiting the number of foreign fighters travelling among the hotbeds of conflict in the Middle East...

  continua / continued avanti - next    [109960] [ 30-oct-2014 05:12 ECT ]

Life Sentence for Sulaiman Abu Ghaith Discredits Guantánamo’s Military Commissions
Andy Worthington

September 27, 2014 -On Tuesday, in a courtroom in New York City, a long-running chapter in the "war on terror" came to an end, when Sulaiman Abu Ghaith, 48, a Kuwaiti-born cleric who appeared in media broadcasts as a spokesman for Al-Qaeda the day after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, received a life sentence based on the three counts for which he was convicted after his trial in March: conspiracy to kill Americans, providing material support to terrorists and conspiring to provide material support to terrorists. The life sentence came as no surprise, as it is permissible for the main conspiracy charge, although Abu Ghaith’s lead defense lawyer, Stanley L. Cohen, had, as the New York Times described it, "sought a sentence of 15 years, saying in a court submission that his client was facing 'the harshest of penalties for talk — and only talk.’"...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109959] [ 30-oct-2014 05:04 ECT ]

Muslim Brotherhood in Jordan condemns joining US coalition on ISIL
Middle East Monitor

September 27, 2014 -The Shura Council of the Muslim Brotherhood in Jordan condemned on Thursday Jordanian participation in the US-led coalition against ISIL, as well as the announcement that Jordanian forces targeted ISIL in Ar-Raqqa.Jordanian newspaper Assabeel reported a statement from the Muslim Brotherhood calling the Jordanian participation in the coalition and targeting ISIL in Syria as a "contradiction with Jordan's interests."The Shura Council considered "the real terrorism that of Zionism, not that of the groups being fought by the US."According to the statement the Muslim Brotherhood stressed that the origins of extremism are the corruption and autocracy practiced by the oppressing regimes. This, the Muslim Brotherhood said, is what led to us refusing them as they contradict Islam, a religion that offers a "great model" for freedom, citizenship, coexistence and social peace...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109958] [ 30-oct-2014 04:47 ECT ]

Sanaa is the fourth Arab capital that fell in Iran's hands
Middle East Monitor

September 27, 2014 - The Tehran city representative in the Iranian parliament, Ali Reza Zakani, who is close to the Iranian supreme guide Ali Khamenei, said: "Three Arab capitals have today ended up in the hands of Iran and belong to the Islamic Iranian revolution". He noted that Sanaa has now become the fourth Arab capital that is on its way to joining the Iranian revolution. The Iranian Rasa News Agency quoted Zakani saying to the Iranian parliament that Iran is passing through the phase of "grand jihad". He pointed out that this phase requires a special policy and a cautious approach because it may lead to many repercussions....
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109957] [ 30-oct-2014 04:16 ECT ]

Syria News - September 26, 2014
Local Coordination Committees of Syria

September 26, 2014 - By the end of Friday, LCC has documented the fall of 50 martyrs including 4 women, 2 martyrs under torture and 1 child. There were 15 martyrs reported in Damascus and its suburbs, 10 in Hama, 9 in Aleppo, 8 in Homs, 6 in Idlib and 2 in Daraa. The International Alliance conducted 29 air strikes at the Syrian cities and towns and used 3 Tomahawk missiles. In Raqqa, the air combats of the International-Arabian alliance conducted 7 air strikes at the Vanguards Camp, the 17th Battalion, the Maqas checkpoint and the Municipality building. There were also 10 air strikes at The Tabaqa Airport (southern of the city) and Kreen area (western of the city). In Hasaka, the alliance's air combats targeted the Khamael village with 3 air strikes in addition to 2 others at the Melabiyeh regiment and 1 air strike at the Hawl area. In Deir Ezzor, the alliance's air combats targeted Mayadeen city with 4 air strikes and the Zgheer AlJazera village with 2 air strikes. The city of Raqqa was also targeted with 3 Tomahawk missiles...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109962] [ 30-oct-2014 06:03 ECT ]

Striking the Islamic State: A smaller misadventure in Iraq
Mustafa Salama

September 26, 2014 - ...Ironically, Bayan Jabr, previous commander of "the Badr Brigades," one of Iraq's most notorious death squads that killed and abused Sunni Iraqis arbitrarily, is still in the new government. Currently the minister of transport; he was previously minister of finance under al-Maliki and in the Iraqi transitional government, 2005-06, as minister of interior; a year that witnessed thousands of sectarian murders carried out by groups under Bayan's control as noted by John Pace, who was the United Nations human rights chief in Iraq.One could dwell much more on the root causes of the internal conflict within Iraq, which involves marginalisation and wide scale grave human rights violations against Sunnis. Such oppression contributed to Iraq joining the Arab Spring, and having popular demands of reform, which have been overwhelmingly ignored in the media’s coverage of Iraq, as the IS takes the spotlight. The demands of hundreds of thousands of protestors were not honoured, but instead, they were met with bullets, prompting a full-blown Sunni rebellion as a last resort. Till this very moment, Sunnis are fighting the Iraqi central government. Fighting the IS does not in any way address the root causes of the conflict in Iraq...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109955] [ 30-oct-2014 03:40 ECT ]

Beyond Mosul
Erin Evers

September 26, 2014 - ...Residents told me that Shia militias, still operating under the control of former Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki, are laying siege to the town, especially the Asa’ib Ahl al-Haqq militia. Sunni residents of other towns to the north accused that group and other militias of carrying out summary executions there after the militas took control in the wake of US air strikes against the Islamic State.The militias, along with federal police and the Iraqi army’s infamous seventeenth division, have kidnapped and killed dozens of residents in Latifiyya, the residents told me – but their stories are falling on deaf ears in Washington. A taxi driver said he saw a car stop next to two men. The men inside the car ordered the two to sit on the street. "Two men got out of the car, shot them both in the head, got back in their car and made a U-turn," the taxi driver told me. "Everyone assumes this is Asa’ib [Ahl al-Haqq], and all of this was just 50 meters from the federal police checkpoint."...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109954] [ 30-oct-2014 03:00 ECT ]

Emergency Humanitarian Appeals and Gaza’s On-going Destruction: The Case of Failed Accountability and Sustainability
by Lamya Hussain

September 26, 2014 - The destruction in Gaza as a result of the most recent Israeli assault has been massive. According to the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), the bombing of water networks has reduced potable water by fifty percent. The destruction of housing and productive resources has been equally severe. Approximately 23,000 people were being housed in UNRWA shelters and an additional seven hundred displaced families have sought refuge with distant relatives. At least thirty-six fishing boats were destroyed, leaving 3,600 fishermen incapacitated from their key means of livelihood. The assault’s destruction of agricultural land has affected an estimated two thousand farmers who require urgent food assistance as well as other interventions to rectify damage to livestock and crops. Similarly, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has reported that the damages have forced farmers and herders to abandon their lands and have crippled fishing activities in Gaza. More specifically, direct damage to around 17,000 hectares of croplands, including agricultural infrastructure (i.e., greenhouses, irrigation systems, livestock shelters, and fishing boats) have contributed to a devastating crisis in food security and sustainability...

  continua / continued avanti - next    [109953] [ 30-oct-2014 02:23 ECT ]

Gaza and the 'crime of crimes'
Ronnie Kasrils

September 26, 2014 - ....For the first time with regards to Israel and its' actions in Gaza, the Russell Tribunal on Palestine, which I am proud to be a juror for, has examined the crime of genocide. As Professor John Dugard, another Tribunal Jurist explains: "The crime of genocide is the crime of crimes. Great care should be taken in considering it. Nevertheless Operation Protective Edge was of such gravity that the Russell Tribunal believes it is necessary to consider whether this crime has been committed." When you deprive a population of the means of life and of movement, when the injured cannot access healthcare, when the exiled are forced time and again back into canvas tents, and when all of this happens under ferocious attack by land, sea and air with the international community looking on whilst quietly arming Israel - what would you call this?..
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109952] [ 30-oct-2014 00:37 ECT ]

Syria protests against the US-led airstrikes: a video round-up

  continua / continued avanti - next    [109951] [ 30-oct-2014 00:29 ECT ]

The Killers
Lying to Ourselves About the Air War


September 26, 2014 - ...As the US air campaign against various forces (Islamic State, Al Qaeda, etc.) located in Syria and Iraq widens, the number of civilian casualties will increase. Pentagon spokespeople and their civilian counterparts will express regret while the generals intensify their war, thereby insuring even more civilian casualties. These facts are not stated to diminish the alleged threat the forces being attacked represent. However, they are being presented because growing numbers of civilian casualties will only validate the claims IS and others make that Washington does not care about civilians, especially Muslim ones. From my understanding of US history and the nature of the US’s use of air warfare, those claims come across not just as reasonable but factually verifiable. From World War Two to the second war on Iraq, the US military has used its airpower to kill, maim, and just plain terrorize the civilian populations of those peoples it considered the enemy....
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109950] [ 30-oct-2014 00:25 ECT ]

Kurdish politician proposes segregating Arabs, Kurds in Iraq
Vager Saadullah

September 26, 2014 - Yazidis and Muslim Kurds displaced from their homes in Mosul governorate by the Islamic State (IS) have expressed reluctance to resume life amid their Arab neighbors, many of whom they accuse of supporting the extremist group. The stories of betrayal by Arab neighbors are numerous among the internally displaced persons interviewed by Al-Monitor. Although there was praise for the Arabs who helped them, many also said they were few and that most of the Arabs supported IS....

  continua / continued avanti - next    [109949] [ 29-oct-2014 23:46 ECT ]

Sharmouta: Names Games in Israel
By Hatim Kanaaneh

September 26, 2014 - The Name Games are on in Israel. On the eve of the 5775 Jewish New Year the Israeli Population, Immigration and Border Authority announced the winning first name most commonly given to a newborn boy in Israel in the preceding year as Youssef, which is used by both Arabs and Jews. The spokesperson neglected to mention that what the Authority had in mind was names among Jews only. When questioned the woman hid behind explanations of who her regular customers demanding the statistics were. Of course, her motives were pure and egalitarian. You can’t really blame this one branch of government. The Israeli Central Bureau of Statistics, an institute reputed for its precision and comprehensiveness would have done the same...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109948] [ 29-oct-2014 23:29 ECT ]

Weekly Report On Israeli Human Rights Violations in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (18- 24 September 2014)
The Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR)

September 26, 2014 - ....Summary: Israeli violations of international law and international humanitarian law in the oPt continued during the reporting period (18 – 24 September 2014). Shooting:
In the Gaza Strip, although almost a month has past following the truce agreement under Egyptian auspices between the Palestinian armed groups and Israel, the catastrophic consequences of the 51-day Israeli offensive on the Gaza Strip have been present. Hundreds of wounded Palestinians have been receiving medical treatment in hospitals in the West Bank and Gaza Strip and other hospitals abroad for the seriousness of their wounds. In the meanwhile, Israeli forces have violated the truce several times by opening fire at Palestinian fishing boats sailing within the allowed fishing area and arresting a number of fishermen. During the reporting period, Israeli forces killed 2 Palestinian militants in Hebron, south of the West Bank, while a civilian was wounded at a military checkpoint, south of Nablus. Moreover, 3 children were wounded at the Orphans' school in the Old City of occupied East Jerusalem. In the Gaza Strip, 3 civilians were killed and 2 others were wounded, including a child due to mishandling an explosive device of the Israeli weapons' remnants in the east of al-Shuja'iya neighbourhood, east of Gaza City. Moreover, 4 steel and gravel collectors were wounded in the northern Gaza Strip in 2 separate incidents...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109947] [ 29-oct-2014 22:52 ECT ]

Desperate Gazans frustrated by Hamas-Fatah squabbles
Mohammed Othman

September 26, 2014 - Umm Rashed al-Najjar sits in the shadow of a tent she erected next to her house that was flattened along with dozens of similar homes in the destroyed town of Khuza’a, east of Khan Yunis.Nearby are hundreds of containers donated as temporary housing units for displaced families. Najjar and the families whose homes were destroyed were shocked at the sight of these containers, which they fear might become a long-term solution to their housing issues."These containers are not suitable for housing. We used to own entire buildings, and we are too many to fit in these. We absolutely refuse to live here. They [need to] start reconstructing our houses — we will not accept these containers," Najjar told Al-Monitor...

  continua / continued avanti - next    [109946] [ 29-oct-2014 14:26 ECT ]

U.S.-led strikes in Iraq, Syria compound humanitarian plight: ICRC
By Stephanie Nebehay

September 25, 2014 - The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) said on Friday that U.S.-led air strikes on Islamist insurgents in Iraq and Syria had worsened a dire humanitarian crisis on the ground.All warring parties in the widening conflicts in the two countries should spare civilians and allow delivery of aid, the Geneva-based ICRC said in a statement. "Years of fighting in Syria and Iraq, the proliferation of armed groups and the recent international air strikes in Iraq and Syria have compounded the humanitarian consequences of the conflicts in both countries," it said. "The humanitarian situation continues to worsen."..

  continua / continued avanti - next    [109945] [ 29-oct-2014 14:20 ECT ]

Why is Abbas playing hardball with Hamas?
Daoud Kuttab

September 26, 2014 - On paper it looks like Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and his counterparts in Hamas need each other. Abbas will be unable to carry out Gaza's reconstruction or even talk convincingly to the world about the future of Palestine without the acquiescence of the Islamists. On the other hand, Hamas cannot get a hammer or nail into Gaza or pay the 40,000 workers it has employed without the approval of the Palestinian president. If both sides so badly need each other, why is the Palestinian leader playing hardball with Hamas?...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109944] [ 29-oct-2014 05:01 ECT ]

Yemen: On brink of civil war or dissolution?
Adam Baron

September 26, 2014 - ...The Houthis say they are committed to peace; the group's leader, Abdulmalek al-Houthi, delivered a magnanimous, nationalistic speech on September 24, calling for inclusion and for Yemenis to join together to build the country. But many in the country remain apprehensive and fear that Houthi's rhetoric amounts to little more than a Trojan Horse: the Houthis declined to sign an annex to the agreement stipulating the withdrawal of their forces, while Houthi fighters have taken aim at the homes of a number of their adversaries in Sanaa Most of the rest of the country are on edge as well. It remains to be seen if southern separatists will take advantage of the tumult in the north to finally make a break with Sanaa...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109943] [ 29-oct-2014 04:52 ECT ]

Europe spins for Israel, embraces genocide
David Cronin

September 26, 2014 - "Public relations" professionals recommend that messages should be tailored to win over particular audiences. The result can be that different things are said to different groups of people. The truth gets distorted; sometimes it is replaced by lies.I’ve found evidence to show that the European Union resorted to that kind of duplicity while trying to strengthen its economic ties with Israel. One of the most significant decisions taken in that respect was the European Parliament’s approval of a trade deal with Israel during 2012...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109942] [ 29-oct-2014 04:51 ECT ]

“But Don't We Have to do SOMETHING About ISIS?”
Debra Sweet

September 26, 2014 - The most frequently asked question I'm hearing, including among people who have been active in opposing U.S. wars, is "but, don't we have to do something about ISIS?" Yes, "we" do. We — people living in this country — do have to send a loud message to the rest of the world that we are completely against the killing, theft of resources, subjugation of women and denial of peoples’ rights in the region by the forces responsible. The Islamic State (ISIS or ISIL) is both a response to U.S. occupation of the region, and also literally, in some cases, was created by torture in U.S. prisons in Iraq...Obama owns this ultimate war crime — invasion of a sovereign nation that poses no imminent threat to the aggressor. "We" did not ask for or approve this war. U.S. attacks always lead to civilian casualties and are fueling — not "degrading" — the spread of groups like ISIS...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109940] [ 29-oct-2014 04:37 ECT ]

A summer of protests in East Jerusalem leave the youth behind bars
Jessica Purkiss

September 26, 2014 - On Wednesday, Muslim worshippers took their dawn prayers in the streets as the third holiest site in Islam was placed under siege by soldiers. Stray rubber coated steel bullets showered on those who refused to stop worshiping hit three students in their school classrooms. An eleven year old boy escaped an attempted kidnap in a nearby neighbourhood. A man used his own hands to demolish his house, to save himself from the colossal charges that would incur if the government who gave the demolition order undertook it. This is a day in Jerusalem, home to the holiest sites for some of the world's major religions...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109939] [ 29-oct-2014 04:30 ECT ]

Iraq ‘Indiscriminate’ Iraqi Air Force Bombings Killing Civilians, Watchdog Says
By Tessa Manuello

September 26, 2014 – "Indiscriminate" Iraqi air force attacks meant to wipe out Islamic State forces have killed dozens of civilians, including 24 refugee children housed at a school near Tikrit at the start of this month, according to an international rights watchdog. "This is not an isolated incident. We have documented a pattern of indiscriminate attacks from the air in which civilians have died," Fred Abrahams, special advisor at New York-based Human Rights Watch (HRW), told Rudaw in a phone interview. "The death toll is high from these cases. At least 75 civilians have been killed and hundreds of others have been wounded in 17 airstrikes," he said...

  continua / continued avanti - next    [109938] [ 29-oct-2014 04:23 ECT ]

Syria News - September 25, 2014
Local Coordination Committees of Syria

September 25, 2014 - By the end of Thursday, LCC were able to document 33 martyrs including 4 women, 4 children and 4 martyrs under torture: 11 martyrs were martyred in Damascus and its suburbs; 9 in Daraa; 7 in Hasakeh; 3 in Aleppo; 2 in Idlib and 1 in Hama. LCC has documented 23 air strikes by the International-Arabian Coalition's air combats at several areas. In Bokamal, they conducted 1 air strike at the Hasyan oil field, 2 air strikes at the Milih oil field and 1 air strike at the city of BoKamal. There were 3 other air strikes at the oil incinerators in Bolail town, Deir Ezzor. They also targeted the Sham (Levant) plains in the eastern suburbs of the city with a Tomahawk rocket. In Aleppo, the air combats of the coalition targeted the Kurdish towns of Tal Ghazal, Ruby and Rufy with 9 air strikes. In Raqqa, air combats conducted an air strike at the Akershy area in addition to 3 other air strikes at the Shaddady area, Hasaka ...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109937] [ 29-oct-2014 04:20 ECT ]

Depleted uranium coordinates needed for clean-up of dangerous sites in Iraq
The Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR)

September 25, 2014 - As the US launches new military actions in the Middle East, the groups say getting information about the military’s use of DU in weaponry and its long-term effects is as urgent as ever. According to "In a State of Uncertainty," a report by the Netherlands-based organization PAX, Iraq has been subject to the largest use of DU munitions of all areas of conflict and test sites, conservatively estimated to be at least 440 metric tons, though the United Nations Environment Programme has estimated an amount up to five times that based on satellite imagery. Iraqi civilians thought to have been exposed to DU and remaining debris have suffered high rates of cancer and birth defects and U.S. veterans report unexplained illnesses...

  continua / continued avanti - next    [109936] [ 29-oct-2014 04:13 ECT ]

Islamic Jihad’s popularity grows after Gaza war
Asmaa al-Ghoul

September 25, 2014 — The latest Gaza war has done little to change the ideological position of Islamic Jihad, which continues to repeat its goals of resisting the occupation and recovering the entire land of Palestine. Islamic Jihad is firm in its position, although on the ground it agreed to a truce that is not in line with its creed, which calls for a ceaseless struggle against the occupation forces. During an interview with Al-Monitor, Khaled al-Batsh, a leader of Islamic Jihad, stressed that the movement is committed to a cease-fire and denied any knowledge of mortar shelling of Eshkol on Sept. 16...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109935] [ 29-oct-2014 04:10 ECT ]

The never-ending, ever-expanding war
Alan Maass.

September 25, 2014 - THE U.S. has expanded its air strikes against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS), adding another element to the deadly mix of conflicts that is inflicting a terrible toll across the region. U.S. officials announced that their warplanes and drones--in a joint operation with five authoritarian Arab regimes--struck targets in eastern and northern Syria. This expands the war on the Sunni fundamentalists of ISIS beyond Iraq, where the U.S. has carried out nearly 200 attacks since launching air strikes six weeks ago. Gen. Martin Dempsey, chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, claimed the U.S. targeted ISIS "safe havens" in Syria. But the missiles were aimed at cities like Raqqa, with hundreds of thousands of inhabitants--where ISIS, like any insurgency, has established itself...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109934] [ 29-oct-2014 04:04 ECT ]

Houthi rebels still harassing media and journalists in Sanaa

September 25, 2014 - Reporters Without Borders is worried that Yemen’s Houthi rebels are deliberating targeting journalists and news media in the capital because of their work, and urges the rebels to respect the 21 September ceasefire and stop harassing media and media personnel.A climate of terror has reigned in Sanaa ever since the rebels launched their offensive on 18 September, and the fighting with government forces is intensifying despite the ceasefire. The rebels still control some official buildings, including the state radio and TV. Rebels raided the home of Al-Shoumou’ Media Foundation director Saif Mohamed Ahmed Al-Hadari on 23 September and kidnapped a member of his family. They also ransacked and looted the foundation, which is owned by Gen. Ali Mohsen Al-Ahmar, the publisher of daily Akhbar Al-Youm...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109933] [ 29-oct-2014 03:51 ECT ]

Chief of Russia's Islamic Committee: US Coordinated Anti-IS Attacks in Syria with Assad
RIA Novosti

September 25, 2014 - Syria was not only notified of the US airstrikes against the Islamic State (IS) group on its territory but also provided Washington with a list of targets, the chairman of the Islamic Committee of Russia Heydar Jemal said Thursday. "Let's be honest, it is known that there have been secret negotiations with [Syrian President Bashar] Asad; he has even handed [the United States] a list of targets," Jemal told reporters. He also argued that the IS advance represents a true phenomenon of "political jihad", much more complex than Nusra Front, an al-Qaeda affiliate in Syria...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109932] [ 29-oct-2014 00:38 ECT ]

Has the Arab world entered an Iranian era?
Eyad Abu Shakra

September 25, 2014- During this period of successive, barely understood regional developments, I believe a question worth asking regarding the Middle East is whether the US, and the international community behind it, has a serious vision of how the current situation may develop. What we have seen over the past few days in Yemen, Iraq, Syria and Lebanon suggests that the Middle East as we know it has ceased to exist and that we are on the threshold of a completely different era. Away from firebrand speeches and threats and counter-threats, we must admit that a certain agenda has been imposed on the region and that a new balance of power is emerging with an international backing and the acquiescence, or acceptance, of the region.
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109931] [ 28-oct-2014 18:05 ECT ]

Mass Murder in the Mediterranean: Mohammed's Story
Al Rantisi Family

September 25, 2014 - Over 400 asylum seekers, including 100 children, were drowned in international waters on their way to Italy after the boat they were travelling on was rammed on 10 September, 2014 by people-smugglers angry because the migrants refused to transfer to a smaller boat. As a report into the mass murder by human rights organisation EuroMid says, the travellers from the Gaza Strip, Syria, Egypt and Sudan had been promised a safe journey to Europe on a secure and comfortable ship. One of them was our son and brother, Mohammed Al Rantisi, a 23 year old Management and Technology graduate heading to Europe in search of a brighter future. His favourite song was a message of farewell...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109930] [ 28-oct-2014 17:43 ECT ]

US raids on Syria
Bassel Oudat

September 25, 2014 - As the campaign against Islamic State (IS) positions in Syria entered its first week, the US and its allies fired hundreds of missiles from warships and planes on sites belonging to the IS and other extremist organisations. The reaction to the strikes in Syria was mixed, with many Syrians voicing concerns over the scope and targets of the operation. Although many Syrians consider the IS as much of an enemy as the regime of Syrian president Bashar Al-Assad, and have thus been supportive of the strikes against the hard-line group, many have had second thoughts once the operations began mostly because of the high rate of casualties among civilians. What has also alienated some Syrians has been the fact that the strikes have targeted groups that have fought against the Syrian regime, unlike the IS which almost generally avoided confrontation with the regime while battling its rivals in the opposition ranks...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109928] [ 28-oct-2014 17:37 ECT ]

Syrian rebels overwhelmingly condemn US bombing as an attack on revolution
By Michael Karadjis

September 25, 2014 - n extraordinary developments, the United States, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Jordan have launched a joint air war, on Syrian territory, with the full support of the Syrian tyranny of Bashar al-Assad, on the Islamic State of Iraq and Sham (ISIS). There are plenty of good reasons to oppose any US war in any circumstances; and in this case, a war that is targeting only the Sunni-sectarian ISIS, yet sparing the viciously anti-Sunni Assad regime, indeed collaborating with the regime, which is responsible for a hundred times more massacre and destruction than ISIS, with which it has long collaborated in any case, is likely to boost support for ISIS among a large section of the poverty-stricken, dispossessed Sunni majority...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109927] [ 28-oct-2014 17:32 ECT ]

The Girl with the Doll
By Tamar Fleishman

September 25, 2014 - The girl with the doll, her mother and her two sisters, one of which was burning up with fever and kept crying each time she saw a soldier, weren’t permitted to pass through the checkpoint and head home to Abu- Gosh. Everything was done according to the regulations and everything was done according to the orders, there were no irregularities. That is what they teach them and that is what they are trained to do, to obey with full compliance without taking responsibility or acting according to their own judgment. Because this way is better for them and this way is better for the system, and this is how generations of children turn into obedient adults who follow their orders without second guessing the actions they perform and their consequences...

  continua / continued avanti - next    [109926] [ 28-oct-2014 17:30 ECT ]

Assad has good reason to be happy
Michael Weiss

September 25, 2014 - In his address to the United Nations General Assembly yesterday, President Obama painted a gruesome picture of what was now taking place in the Middle East... However, it remains a disconcerting fact of this speech, and indeed of the enormous blind-spot in Obama’s so-called strategy for the Middle East, that every atrocity he listed for ISIS has also been committed by either the regime of Bashar al-Assad or by the consortium of Shiite militias operating in Syria and Iraq, under the tutelage and patronage of Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps. Not a sentence or paragraph was reserved for them, apart from a fleeting reference to the "brutality" of the regime. Terrorism is no longer state-sponsored, you see, and apart from the president’s noble claims about the humanistic principles of all faiths and there being no "clash of civilizations," it only ever comes from one sect of Islam....
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109925] [ 28-oct-2014 17:24 ECT ]

Arab Bank to appeal verdict in US terror financing "show trial"
Charlotte Silver

September 25, 2014 - Lawyers for a bank found liable in a New York court this week of providing financial services to the Palestinian armed group Hamas say they will appeal the jury’s precedent-setting verdict. On Monday, after two days of deliberation following a six-week trial, an eleven-member jury found the Jordan-based Arab Bank liable for knowingly supporting two dozen acts of terrorism committed between 2001 and 2004 in or around Israel by members of Hamas. Declared a "show trial" by Arab Bank’s defense attorneys, the case is believed to be the first successful civil suit holding a financial institute liable under the anti-terrorism statute which prohibits individuals or organizations from providing services to designated terrorist organizations...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109924] [ 28-oct-2014 17:16 ECT ]

Defense Contractors Are Making a Killing
Dan Froomkin

September 25, 2014 -- Stock prices for Lockheed Martin, General Dynamics, Raytheon and Northrop Grumman set all-time record highs last week as it became increasingly clear that President Obama was committed to a massive, sustained air war in Iraq and Syria. It’s nothing short of a windfall for these and other huge defense contractors, who’ve been getting itchy about federal budget pressures that threatened to slow the rate of increase in military spending. Now, with U.S. forces literally blowing through tens of millions of dollars of munitions a day, the industry is not just counting on vast spending to replenish inventory, but hoping for a new era of reliance on supremely expensive military hardware...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109923] [ 28-oct-2014 17:12 ECT ]

Khorasan: the group that isn't
Imran Khan

September 25, 2014 -A few days ago I began to see news reports quoting US ‎military and government officials talking up a group called Khorasan. This piqued my interest. In 14 years of covering this region this was a new name for me. Then the reports began to paint them as a shadowy super group of hardcore terrorists that are experimenting with technology and new, ever more fiendish ways of attacking civilians in the US. Then the group became the target of US airstrikes in Syria and suddenly the name was on every news outlet's lips. Except something, to me, wasn't right. I began to make some calls to contacts across the Middle East and South Asia. To say I drew a blank would be an understatement. Reactions ranged from a hearty laugh to confusion. The name was new...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109922] [ 28-oct-2014 17:00 ECT ]

Obama Administration Invents Language to Conceal Reality of War in Iraq & Syria
By: Kevin Gosztola

September 25, 2014 - One of the bothersome aspects of the war escalation in Iraq and Syria has been the commitment of President Barack Obama’s administration to using language to conceal their war plans. The White House has insisted this is not a war. The attacks on the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) are a part of a "counterterrorism strategy." The US has not launched a war because it has previously been dropping Hellfire missiles on suspected terrorists in various countries. Those strikes, though they have killed hundreds of civilians and were questionable in their legality and success in bringing about "security," were part of a "strategy."..

  continua / continued avanti - next    [109921] [ 28-oct-2014 16:33 ECT ]

Shiite rebel seizure of Yemen capital a 'gift' for Tehran?
MEE and agencies

September 25, 2014 - The takeover by Shiite rebels of Yemen's capital this week is a potential boost for Iran, analysts said. It is still unclear what the links are between the Ansarullah, or Huthi, rebels and Shiite-ruled Iran, but Tehran will no doubt be pleased by a move that offers the prospect of expanding its influence on the Arabian Peninsula. The capital Sanaa lies in the Shiite-majority northern highlands, but the rest of Yemen is overwhelmingly Sunni and Al-Qaeda militants have a strong presence in the south and east.And a complicating factor could be former president Ali Abdullah Saleh, forced from power after 33 years of iron-fisted rule by a 2011 uprising but still a key powerbroker. Saleh, who is himself Shiite, is widely believed to have played a role in the rebels' takeover of Sanaa through his tribal and security force allies, and it is still unclear what he may expect in return...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109920] [ 28-oct-2014 03:48 ECT ]

What the Houthi takeover of Sanaa reveals about Yemen’s politics
by Iona Craig

September 25, 2014 — Houthi fighters seized most of Yemen’s capital, Sanaa, and signed a deal with the government last Sunday. Since their lightning takeover of the city, Houthi militias have attacked the adversaries of former President Ali Abdullah Saleh and political rivals of current President Abdrahbu Mansour Hadi. But the apparent ease of the Houthi victory reveals much more about the smoke and mirrors of Yemeni politics than it does about the militiamen’s fighting prowess. Indeed, by allowing the Houthis free rein of the capital, Hadi has taken a gamble that could bring more violence as the backlash against the Houthi uprising gains strength...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109919] [ 28-oct-2014 03:44 ECT ]

Gaza farms adjacent to buffer zone suffer greatest losses
Middle East Monitor

September 24, 2014 -Palestinian residents in the buffer zone along the eastern borders of the Gaza Strip suffer the loss of their homes and source of income in every Israeli escalation.Palestinian farmer Mohamed Qudih, 60, and his wife Sabiha, 59, lost their house, which was destroyed by the Israeli occupation during the ground invasion in the Khan Younis village of Khuza'a. They also lost their farm, which included around 50 olive and date trees and okra crops. "I was surprised when I saw the rubble of my house," Qudih told local Palestinian news agency Quds Net. "I was also surprised to see around 50 olives trees and date palms were uprooted and the okra crop was crushed."...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109918] [ 28-oct-2014 03:44 ECT ]

Syria News - September 24, 2014
Local Coordination Committees of Syria

September 24, 2014 - By the end of Wednesday, LCC were able to document 41 martyrs including 2 women, 5 children and 3 martyrs under torture: 27 martyrs were martyred in Damascus and its suburbs; 4 in Daraa; 3 in Aleppo; 3 in Idlib; 2 in Hama and 2 in Homs . LCC has documented 74 shelling points by the International-Arabian Coalition at the Syrian cities and towns including the use of 5 Tomahawk rockets. In Raqqa, the international alliance targeted the Kharab Eshak town in the western suburbs of Tal Abyad city with 5 air strikes. It has also targeted the 93rd Brigade in Ain Essa town with a Tomahawk rocket. In Deir Ezzor the alliance's air combats targeted the Industrial area at Hajjana as well as the Military Security Department with 6 air strikes. In BoKamal, the air combats of the international alliance launched 13 air strikes and used 3 Tomahawk rockets. 4 air strikes were reported at the Mayadeen city in addition to another one at the Quriya plains, 1 air strike at the Omar oil field and 3 air strikes at the Hasiba border-side city with Iraq. In Aleppo, the air combats of the international alliance targeted the towns of Sareen, Quba, Jesr Qara Quzak and Elaj. The city of Kobane was targeted with 11 air strikes....
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109916] [ 28-oct-2014 03:08 ECT ]

Hamas weighs alternatives to Palestinian unity government
Adnan Abu Amer

September 24, 2014- As Cairo’s indirect negotiations between Israelis and Palestinians started on Sept. 23 toward a cease-fire agreement in the Gaza Strip, Palestinian negotiations between Fatah and Hamas also kicked off on files related to the reconciliation reached in April. The Palestinian dialogue comes amid tensions between Fatah and Hamas that escalated immediately after the end of the Israeli war on Gaza Aug. 26, due to disputes regarding the reconstruction of Gaza and the unpaid wages of former government employees....
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109915] [ 28-oct-2014 03:01 ECT ]

Baiji Refinery Attacked; 271 Killed, 63 Wounded across Iraq
by Margaret Griffis

September 24, 2014 - Airstrikes continued across Iraq and Syria, killing scores of Islamic State and other militants. Overall, at least 271 people were killed and 63 more were wounded. U.S. forces confirmed that airstrikes were conducted along a route between Albu Kamal, Syria and Qaim, Iraq that militants have used to transport arms. Other strikes took place closer to Baghdad and near Arbil...A senior commander in Iran’s Revolutionary Guards revealed that top Iranian general and 70 troops were involved, on the ground, in protecting Arbil from falling to the Islamic State....
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109914] [ 28-oct-2014 01:57 ECT ]

Congratulations, Assad: You successfully got the US to bomb your enemies instead of you
Max Fisher

September 24, 2014 - Almost precisely one year ago, the Obama administration was so enraged with Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad, whose campaign of terror in the Syrian civil war had killed thousands of civilians, including with chemical weapons, that President Obama was personally making the case for launching off-shore strikes against Assad ... Not only did Obama never attack Assad, but he is now sending the American military and America's allies to bomb Assad's most powerful enemy, ISIS. The United States has completely switched sides in the Syrian civil war and is now indirectly aiding the Syrian government it was plotting to strike just a year ago...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109913] [ 28-oct-2014 01:09 ECT ]

Iraq snapshot - September 24, 2014
The Common Ills

September 24, 2104 - ...Yes, two Saturdays ago, al-Abadi did give the order to stop the bombing of Falluja's residential neighborhoods. And how did that turn out? It didn't stop. It continues. For example, today NINA reports: A medical source at the hospital in Fallujah said on Wednesday that 17 civilians were martyred and wounded, including women and children by indiscriminately bombing on Fallujah. Th e source told the National Iraqi News Agency / Nina / that the indiscriminate shelling with explosive barrels and mortars targeted residential neighborhoods in the city of Fallujah, including Aljughaifi , Golan, al-Askari, al-Shuhadaa and al-Shurta, and resulted in the killing of 4 civilians and wounding 13 others, including two children and a woman were taken to the hospital. Those deaths are bad for numerous reasons starting with the bombings of civilian targets -- residential neighborhoods -- are War Crimes -- legally defined as such. Those deaths are bad because those people were killed for the 'crime' of living their lives. ...The bombings daily demonstrate that nothing has changed and that the Sunnis -- Falluja is a Sunni-dominated city -- will continue to be attacked....
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109912] [ 28-oct-2014 00:33 ECT ]

NYT: De-facto Hezbollah-US alliance against ISIS
The Daily Star

September 24, 2014 -- Hezbollah and the U.S. have become de-facto allies in Syria, with the common objective of combating ISIS and preventing its spread into Lebanon, the New York Times said Sunday. In a rare interview between a senior party official and American media, Hezbollah’s newly appointed public relations chief, Mohammed Afif, implicitly acknowledged the rise of an indirect coordination in the fight against terror between the party and Washington, though their broader goals and views sharply diverge. "All have an interest to keep the peace" in Lebanon, Afifi told the NYT, but added that each had its own ways to combat their common enemy...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109911] [ 28-oct-2014 00:16 ECT ]

Exclusive: U.S. told Iran of intent to strike Islamic State in Syria - source
By Parisa Hafezi, Louis Charbonneau and Arshad Mohammed

September 24, 2014 - The United States informed Iran in advance of its intention to strike Islamic State militants in Syria and assured Tehran that it would not target the forces of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, a senior Iranian official told Reuters. The communication, confirmed in part by a senior U.S. State Department official, may signal the estranged foes are inching toward a level of contacts rarely seen in over three decades since the 1979 Islamic revolution when a hostage crisis prompted Washington to sever ties with Tehran. Speaking on condition of anonymity, the senior Iranian official said Tehran had voiced concern for Assad, its closest regional ally and the recipient of Iranian military support during a Syrian civil war now in its fourth year.

  continua / continued avanti - next    [109910] [ 28-oct-2014 00:01 ECT ]

Israeli Government Eventually Admits that Mohammed Is the Top Baby Name
By Murtaza Hussain

September 24, 2014 - Are Palestinian babies actually babies? That’s been a surprisingly thorny question for the Israeli government this week, when the Population, Immigration and Border Authority at first declared the Hebrew name "Yosef" the most popular baby name for the past year, and then was forced to admit that the nation’s most popular name was actually "Mohammed" — assuming one includes Arab babies. By their nature, babies are generally uninterested in politics. But in Israel’s highly-charged political environment, even infants are imbued with broader significance. For having the temerity to be born, Palestinian babies have been referred to by Israeli politicians as "demographic threats" and even "time-bombs."..
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109909] [ 27-oct-2014 06:37 ECT ]

What if FDR had declared war against both Hitler & Stalin
Clay Claiborne

September 24, 2014 - ...When the Obama administration announced that it had attacked the "little known" Khorasan group as well as ISIS in Syria, it was really talking about al Nusra, or a section of it. The reason those of us that have been following events in Syria for years never heard of this "Khorasan group" before now is that the name was entirely the creation of the "Obama group", just as the term "Viet Cong" was never what the National Liberation Front fighters in Vietnam called themselves. It was the creation of a US army psyops officer in 1958 which was immediately picked up by all the media. The new name "Khorasan group" is a thin veil to cover what they are really doing just as their story about an "imminent attack" on the US by these fighters around Idlib and Aleppo is a thin story to cover Obama's attack on ISIS's opposition in Syria....The Obama administration was also so kind as to give the Assad regime a "heads-up" as to the coming attack. ISIS also had plenty of time to fortify and reposition itself in preparation for the US air campaign. In fact the only forces caught by surprise were those that have been fighting both the Assad regime and ISIS.,,
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109908] [ 27-oct-2014 06:29 ECT ]

Exclusive: Syrian minister says U.S.-led strikes going in 'right direction'
By Kinda Makieh

September 24, 2014- A Syrian government minister said U.S.-led air strikes against militants are going in the "right direction" because the government had been informed before they started and they were not hitting civilians or Syrian military targets. Syria is still watching all developments with caution, Ali Haidar, minister for national reconciliation, told Reuters on Wednesday after U.S. warplanes pounded Islamic State positions in a second day of attacks."As for the raids in Syria, I say that what has happened so far is proceeding in the right direction in terms of informing the Syrian government and by not targeting Syrian military installations and not targeting civilians," he said."Notification of the Syrian government happened," he said. "Confirmation that they would not target Syrian military installations, and confirmation they would not target civilians happened."...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109907] [ 27-oct-2014 06:21 ECT ]

Syrian Airstrikes and the Khorasan Group
Dennis Loo

September 24, 2014 - Let us assume, for the sake of argument, that the US government's claims are true that its airstrikes on Syria killed eight leaders of the Khorasan Group, an al-Qaeda offshoot, thus foiling an "imminent attack" on the US homeland. Consider the facts and logic of this claim.Even if a) Khorasan was in fact planning an "imminent" attack and b) their key leaders were killed, exactly how did this decapitation stop that "imminent" attack (and especially, future ones)? First, if the US government knew that an attack was "imminent," why wasn’t the alert level raised in the US before this "imminent attack"? They have warned us in the past to watch for signs of a terrorist attack, based upon claims of "noise" or "chatter" over their NSA spy lines. Why not around this?...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109906] [ 27-oct-2014 06:13 ECT ]

Yemen : An Inside Job
Abdulrahman Al-Rashed

September 24, 2014 -Yemen’s capital Sana’a has been both attacked from the outside and stabbed in the back by insiders. The prime minister and the interior minister staged a coup against the state in favor of the assailants, while Houthis shelled the city from all sides. Sana’a suffered a sad and difficult night, opening a new era in which the whole country is now placed in danger. As to why and how such a situation arose, there are many factors that led to the siege and the collapse of state authority. First of all, let’s keep in mind that the overthrow of Yemen’s longtime president Ali Abdullah Saleh was not going to be quick and easy. Two years on, he has succeeded in disrupting the country’s domestic situation indirectly. Among his allies are the Houthis and the Houthi Ansar Allah organization, which share some traits with Lebanon’s Hezbollah and the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), and which rejected reconciliation and declared its leader a caliph...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109905] [ 27-oct-2014 06:09 ECT ]

Iran general helped Iraq's Kurds battle IS group

September 24, 2014— A top Iranian general and 70 of his forces were on the ground in Iraq this summer, helping Kurdish fighters defend the regional capital Irbil against Islamic State militants, a senior commander from Iran's Revolutionary Guard said Wednesday. The commander's remarks appeared to confirm for the first time that Iranian military forces are playing a battlefield role alongside Iraqis against the Islamic State extremist group, though it was not clear whether they were involved in combat or merely serving as advisers. Iran has said it provides advice to Iraq's government but has denied sending combatants or weapons...

  continua / continued avanti - next    [109904] [ 27-oct-2014 06:06 ECT ]

Ohio student leader gets death, rape threats over "blood bucket" video for Palestine
Richard Norton-Taylor

September 24, 2014 - Dozens of faculty members at Ohio University have come out in support of the student senate president who took a bold stand for justice in Palestine on 2 September and who has faced death threats and threats of rape since she videotaped herself pouring a bucket of fake blood over her head to protest Israel’s abuse of Palestinians. Megan Marzec has been at the center of a targeted campaign by anti-Palestinian individuals, Zionist groups and Israel-aligned media calling for her resignation. The Ohio University administration has both criticized her action and refused to publicly condemn the threats against her...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109903] [ 27-oct-2014 05:57 ECT ]

Hundreds of Palestinians killed in Mediterranean were trying to escape hopelessness in Gaza
Nora Barrows-Friedman

September 24, 2014 - The day after it was reported that several hundred Palestinians escaping Gaza by boat had been murdered by smugglers in the Mediterranean, a prominent human rights advocate in Gaza said that these kinds of tragedies are a symptom of the seven-year-long Israeli-Egyptian blockade and the continuing systemic violence meted out by Israel in Gaza. Khalil Abu Shammala, director of the Al Dameer Association for Human Rights, told The Electronic Intifada on 16 September that the hundreds of Palestinians killed at sea were trying to "escape from the situation, the reality they live in Gaza. Seven years of blockade, three wars in six years and no hope."...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109902] [ 27-oct-2014 05:54 ECT ]

Nakhwa without Borders: Gaza and the End of ‘Arab Gallantry’

September 24, 2014 - On its own the Arabic word al-Nakhwa, means "gallantry." Combined with the word "al-Arabiya" – "Arab gallantry" – the term becomes loaded with meanings, cultural and even political implications and subtext. But what is one to make of "Arab gallantry" during and after Israel’s most brutal war on Gaza between 8 July and 26 August which killed 2,163 Palestinians and wounded over 11,000 more? Is this the end of Arab Nakhwa? Did it even ever exist? As a Palestinian Gaza refugee from a simple peasantry background, I was raised to believe that al-Nakhwa was an essential component of one’s Arab identity. Together with al-Rojoula – "manhood/fortitude/heroism" – al-Karm – "generosity" – al-Karama – "dignity" – and al-Sharaf – "honour" – were all indispensable tenants in the character of any upright person. The alternative is unthinkably shameful...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109901] [ 27-oct-2014 05:51 ECT ]

On Guantánamo, No News is Bad News
Andy Worthington

September 24, 2014 - On Guantánamo, the news has largely dried up in recent weeks, which is not reassuring for the 79 men — out of the 149 men still held — who have had their release approved but are still held. 75 of these men were recommended for release in 2009 by President Obama’s Guantánamo Review Task Force, and four others were recommended for release this year by Periodic Review Boards, established to review the cases of the majority of the men who were not cleared for release by the task force. Since last May, when President Obama promised to resume releasing prisoners — after a period of nearly three years when only five men were released — 17 men have been released, which is obviously progress of sorts....

  continua / continued avanti - next    [109900] [ 27-oct-2014 05:44 ECT ]

Videos and Photographs Claim to Show Civilians Killed by US Led Air Strikes in Syria
By Eliot Higgins

September 24, 2014 - Following last night’s air strikes on targets inside Syria by US led forces, a number of claims were made about civilian victims of the air strikes. After 3 years of conflict Syrian opposition groups have already established social media networks that have allowed them to quickly share and disseminate images and reports from the conflict, and this has meant it’s been possible to find evidence to support the claims of US led air strikes killing and injuring civilians. The main allegations come from the small town of Kafar Deryan, in Idlib, and west of Aleppo, where videos and images posted to social media channels have shown rescue efforts after the attacks, victims, and the debris of the munition used. ....It seems, based on this information, that there’s strong evidence that US led air strikes led to the deaths of 11-14 civilians, if local reports are accurate, along with a further 8 being injured in last nights air strikes....
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109899] [ 27-oct-2014 05:33 ECT ]

Pakistani citizen challenges UK’s ‘act of state’ stance in Iraq torture case
Richard Norton-Taylor

September 24, 2014 - A Pakistani citizen who says he was tortured over a period of 10 years after being captured by UK special forces in Iraq and handed over to US troops will on Wednesday contest the government’s claim that he cannot pursue his case on the grounds that it would damage Britain’s relations with America. Yunus Rahmatullah was seized in Iraq in 2004 in an incident that was kept secret from ministers and only disclosed to MPs five years later. Rahmatullah, now 31, was released by the US without charge in May and is seeking to sue the Ministry of Defence and the Foreign Office, accusing them of responsibility for his subjection to torture and abuse...

  continua / continued avanti - next    [109898] [ 27-oct-2014 05:27 ECT ]

Glasgow activists arrested for shutting down drone maker tied to Gaza slaughter
Rania Khalek

September 24, 2014- Ten activists were arrested after shutting down a Thales UK factory in the Scottish city of Glasgow on Tuesday to protest the company’s relationship with the Israeli military. It was the first direct action by the Glasgow Palestine Action Network (GPAN), a newly formed group led by women, queer and trans activists with a history of supporting the Palestinian struggle. Staged in response to Israel’s summertime military onslaught that killed more than 2,100 Palestinians in the besieged Gaza Strip, including more than 500 children, the action sought to protest "the UK economy’s ever growing military industrial cooperation with governments that flout international law," GPAN explained in a press release...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109897] [ 27-oct-2014 05:09 ECT ]

Syrian Foreign Ministry: US officially informed us about its strikes against Islamic State
Middle East Monitor

September 24, 2014 - The Syrian government stated on Tuesday that it was made aware in advance of the air strikes against Islamic State sites on its soil, and that it had received a message from US Secretary of State John Kerry, delivered by the Iraqi Foreign Minister, stating that the US and its allies were intending to launch the strikes in Syria hours before the start of the attack, Al-Quds newspaper reported on Tuesday...The newspaper quoted a statement issued by the Syrian foreign ministry saying that its foreign minister, Walid Al-Moallem, had received a message from his American counterpart through the foreign minister of Iraq, adding that the Iraqi government, led by the majority Shi'ites, remains a close ally of Damascus...

  continua / continued avanti - next    [109896] [ 27-oct-2014 05:04 ECT ]

Syria News - September 23, 2014
Local Coordination Committees of Syria

September 23, 2014 - By the end of Tuesday, LCC were able to document 123 martyrs including 8 women, 7 children and 2 martyrs under torture: 57 martyrs were reported in Aleppo 50 of them from Jabhet Al-Nusra were martyred by International Alliance Combats's airstrike on Al- Muhandisen Suburbs; 29 in Idlib including 10 civilians and 11 from Jabhet Al-Nusra were martyred by International Alliance Air Combats's airstrikes on Kafrdryan; 22 in Damascus and its Suburbs; 7 in Homs including 6 Bedouins were martyred by by International Alliance Air Combats's airstrikes on Shaa'r mount; 4 in Dier Ezzor; 3 in Daraa and 1 in Hama. LCC has also documented 72 air strikes by the U.S. air combats accompanied with Qatari, Saudi, Jordanian, Emirati and Bahraini warplanes at several Syrian cities and towns....
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109895] [ 27-oct-2014 04:47 ECT ]

Syria: The Expansion of the War on Terror

September 23, 2014 - The start of a war in Syria and Iraq marks the latest chapter in the War on Terror-without-end that began after 9-11. And like the wars that came before it, we are likely to see similar consequences. Asim Qureshi, Research Director of CAGE [1], said: 1. "Bombing Syria and Iraq will unleash more hatred and violence against the West. This has already begun with an IS spokesperson yesterday calling on IS supporters to target Western countries [2], a number of beheadings over the last several weeks, and the continued detention of Briton Alan Henning. Western foreign policy has been the premier underlying grievance in violence against the West: the invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan led to bloodshed on the streets of Britain and America, while it gave rise to groups such as IS; the bombing of Syria and Iraq will only make things worse."..
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109894] [ 27-oct-2014 04:42 ECT ]

Pope Francis Keeps Silent on Syria Strikes
Elizabeth Dias

September 23, 2014 - One voice has so far remained quiet since the United States and five allied Arab nations launched airstrikes in Syria against the Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS) late Monday: That of Pope Francis. The Holy Father’s silence is a complete contrast to his all-out effort a year ago this month—almost to the week—to prevent U.S. military strikes against the Syrian regime. Then, Pope Francis dominated the news cycle with his message opposing U.S. intervention. He wrote a letter to Russian President Vladimir Putin, host of the G-20 summit that President Barack Obama was attending, urging leaders to oppose military intervention in Syria: "To the leaders present, to each and every one, I make a heartfelt appeal for them to help find ways to overcome the conflicting positions and to lay aside the futile pursuit of a military solution," he argued....Veteran Vatican reporter John Allen Jr. put what’s at stake in the Pope’s diplomatic career best. "To date, the only concrete diplomatic success to which Francis can point is helping Syrian President Bashar al-Assad cling to power "...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109893] [ 27-oct-2014 04:22 ECT ]

Is This Washington's Intermediary to Assad?
Elias Groll

September 23, 2014 - Immediately after the United States began its bombing campaign in President Bashar al-Assad's backyard, the Syrian leader received a conspicuous visitor: Iraqi National Security Advisor Faleh al-Fayyad. The two men discussed the ongoing fight against Islamic State militants and, according to the Syrian state media summary of the meeting, Assad told the Iraqi official "that Syria supports any international counterterrorism effort." It was at least their second meeting in as many weeks. While the report contained no specific mention of U.S. bombing in Syria, Assad's comment walks that fine line where it can be easily interpreted as a signal to Washington that Damascus will not stand the way of -- and indeed welcomes -- U.S. efforts to strike the Islamic State, which Assad sees as a mortal enemy...

  continua / continued avanti - next    [109892] [ 27-oct-2014 04:08 ECT ]

Iranian conservative says the US needs Iran
Behdad Bordbar

September 23, 2014 - Amir Mohebian is one of the most well-known conservative voices of the last two decades. He rose to prominence as a critic of the Reformists after the election of Mohammad Khatami in 1997. A professor of Western philosophy at Islamic Azad University, Mohebian was also one of the editors of the conservative newspaper Resala and established the Arya Center for Strategic Studies, a think thank. He is currently editor in chief of the Arya News Agency.In an interview with Al-Monitor, Mohebian said that US Middle East policy in the last 10 years has benefited Iran. He also asserted that Iran’s regional power is a "reality" that the United States should accept, because Washington is now in a position where it needs Iran. He further stated that if a nuclear deal is reached, Iran’s ability to export gas could have the effect of forcing Russia to change its policies...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109891] [ 27-oct-2014 04:03 ECT ]

Will Abbas walk the walk on his threats to Israel?
Ahmad Melhem

September 23, 2014 - Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas is scheduled to address the UN General Assembly in New York on Sept. 26 with an overview of his political plan to end the Israeli occupation of Palestine. In recent weeks, the Palestinian leadership has raised the level and volume of its diplomatic and political movement to mobilize support for its plan. In a statement Sept. 19, Nabil Abu Rudeineh, a spokesman for the Palestinian president, described the coming weeks as "decisive and important" for the Palestinian cause.

  continua / continued avanti - next    [109890] [ 27-oct-2014 03:33 ECT ]

Senate Torture Report Vanishes
David Copperfield is a CIA Contractor?

By Philip Giraldi

September 23, 2014 - ...Back here at home, the dispute over the Senate Intelligence Committee report on Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) torture, a hot button issue earlier this year, has also benefited, largely disappearing from sight. The meticulously researched Senate report, covering 6000 pages and including 35,000 footnotes, apparently concluded that torturing terrorist suspects was not only illegal under the United Nations Convention on Torture, to which Washington is a signatory, it was also ineffective, producing no intelligence that was otherwise unobtainable. Since a "forgive and forget" forward-looking White House has already indicated that no one will ever be punished for illegal actions undertaken in the wake of 9/11, why is the torture issue important beyond the prima facie case that a war crime that was authorized by the highest levels of the federal government? ..
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109889] [ 27-oct-2014 03:27 ECT ]

Fighting in Iraq Until Hell Freezes Over
Peter Van Buren

September 23, 2014 - ...Under a new president, elected in 2008 in part on his promise to end American military involvement in Iraq, Washington’s strategy morphed into the more media-palatable mantra of "no boots on the ground." Instead, backed by aggressive intel and the "surgical" application of drone strikes and other kinds of air power, U.S. covert ops were to link up with the "moderate" elements in Islamic governments or among the rebels opposing them – depending on whether Washington was opting to support a thug government or thug fighters.The results? Chaos in Libya, highlighted by the flow of advanced weaponry from the arsenals of the dead autocrat Muammar Gaddafi across the Middle East and significant parts of Africa, chaos in Yemen, chaos in Syria, chaos in Somalia, chaos in Kenya, chaos in South Sudan, and, of course, chaos in Iraq. And then came the Islamic State (IS) and the new "caliphate," the child born of a neglectful occupation and an autocratic Shia government out to put the Sunnis in their place once and for all. And suddenly we were heading back into Iraq...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109888] [ 27-oct-2014 03:10 ECT ]

State: Syria given advance notice of strikes
By Justin Sink

September 23, 2014 - The Obama administration informed Syria's government it intended to hit Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) positions before launching airstrikes on Monday, but did not provide advance warning on a military level, a State Department spokeswoman said Tuesday.State spokeswoman Jen Psaki said the administration also warned Syria not to engage U.S. aircraft and that the U.S. did not request Syria's permission for the strike. Syria's government was informed that the U.S. strikes were coming by U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power, who spoke to Syria's permanent representative to the U.N. ...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109887] [ 27-oct-2014 03:01 ECT ]

Israel carries out extrajudicial killing of two Palestinians suspected in Israeli youths kidnapping
Allison Deger

September 23, 2014 - Overnight Tuesday Israeli special forces killed two Palestinian men who were suspected of kidnapping and slaying three Israeli youths abducted in June while hitchhiking in the Gush Etzion settlement bloc of the West Bank. Amer Abu Aisha, 32, and Marwan Qawasmeh, 29, had evaded Israeli forces for over 100 days hiding out in their home city of Hebron no more than five miles from the site of where the remains of Eyal Yifrah, 19, Gilad Shaar, 16, and Naftali Fraenkel, 16, were discovered over the summer....
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109886] [ 27-oct-2014 02:51 ECT ]

Assad: Syria supports any international efforts in fight against Islamists

September 23, 2014 -Syria is determined to continue war against terrorism on its territory and supports efforts of the international coalition in the fight against Islamists, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad told state television on Tuesday, according to ITAR-TASS.Earlier on Tuesday, a spokesman for Syrian Foreign Ministry reported that the United States has informed Syria’s Damascus on strikes at positions of Islamic State gunmen in Syria. "Americans informed the Syrian representative at the United Nations that strikes will be delivered at Islamic State positions in Racca," AFP news agency quoted him as saying...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109885] [ 27-oct-2014 02:46 ECT ]

Israeli Refuseniks: Occupation’s Dark Underbelly Exposed
By Jonathan Cook

September 23, 2014 - A letter signed by 43 veterans of an elite Israeli military intelligence unit declaring their refusal to continue serving the occupation has sent shockwaves through Israeli society. But not in the way the soldiers may have hoped. Unusually, this small group of reservists has gone beyond justifying their act of refusal in terms of general opposition to the occupation. Because of their place at the heart of the system of control over Palestinians, they have set out in detail, in the letter and subsequent interviews, what their work entails and why they find it morally repugnant. Veterans of the secretive Unit 8200, Israel’s NSA, say it is drummed into new intelligence recruits that no order is unlawful. They must, for example, guide air strikes even if civilians will be harmed...

  continua / continued avanti - next    [109884] [ 27-oct-2014 02:42 ECT ]

Jewish fraternity “fearmongering” against campus Palestine activists
Ali Abunimah

September 23, 2014 - A fraternity with dozens of chapters on campuses across the United States has sent an email to its members insinuating that actions by Palestine solidarity activists planned for today may include violence against Jews. The email from Zeta Beta Tau (ZBT), which describes itself as "the world’s first Jewish fraternity," appears to be the latest attempt by a pro-Israel organization to stoke tensions between Jewish and other students in an effort to discredit criticism of Israel following the recent massacre in Gaza. "On September 23, a group called Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) is planning a 'Day of Action’ with other pro-Palestine student groups," the email from Laurence A. Bolotin, ZBT’s executive director, states...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109883] [ 27-oct-2014 02:35 ECT ]

Gaza medics go door to door to treat thousands of war wounded
Nora Barrows-Friedman

September 23, 2014 - Medical workers have created an outreach program across the Gaza Strip, going door-to-door to treat patients and help families of the injured, ill and wounded take care of their loved ones. This outreach program may be one of the only ways patients can get treatment until medical facilities destroyed by Israel this summer are rebuilt and the siege is lifted, says Basman Alashi, executive director of Gaza’s al-Wafa hospital. Of the approximately 11,000 Palestinians wounded in Israeli strikes on Gaza this summer, about half require rehabilitation care, says Dr. Alashi...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109882] [ 27-oct-2014 02:15 ECT ]

FSA's Harakat Hazm issues statement condemning US aerial attack on Syria.

September 23, 2014 - A Syrian rebel group that has reportedly received weapons from the United States criticized air strikes Tuesday by a U.S.-led coalition against jihadists in the war-torn country. The Hazm Movement, in a statement posted on their Twitter account, said the strikes would undermine the armed opposition and benefit President Bashar al-Assad's regime. They described the strikes as "an attack on national sovereignty that undermines the Syrian revolution". "The sole beneficiary of this foreign interference in Syria is the Assad regime" the group said...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109881] [ 27-oct-2014 01:59 ECT ]

Israel forces Gaza fishermen to undress in attack violating ceasefire deal
Joe Catron

September 23, 2014 - Nearly a month after Israel’s military offensive against the Gaza Strip ended in an indefinite ceasefire on 26 August, Israeli forces continue to shoot at and detain Palestinian fishermen. The Israeli military has captured ten fishermen and confiscated four fishing boats, while firing live ammunition in dozens of attacks on both the sea and shore of the besieged coastal enclave. A day before its security cabinet ordered the military operation on 7 July, and two days before its forces started intensely bombarding the Gaza Strip, Israel unilaterally reduced the permitted zone it had imposed on Palestinian fishermen to three nautical miles from the shore...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109880] [ 27-oct-2014 01:45 ECT ]

Syrians say civilians killed in U.S. airstrikes
Raja Abdulrahim

September 23, 2014 - The video, said to have been shot Tuesday in northwestern Syria, shows Idlib province residents going through motions that have become all too familiar in three years of civil war between antigovernment rebels and the forces of President Bashar Assad: surveying the remnants of flattened homes and picking through the debris. This time, though, the bombs rained down from a government other than Assad's. "Mass destruction of the civilian homes as a result of the strikes of the Western alliance on the civilians in the western Idlib suburbs," an antigovernment activist says in the video. "Look, it is all civilian homes."...Antigovernment activists said that five missiles struck in Idlib province, four on Al Nusra Front bases and weapons warehouses and the other in a residential neighborhood in the village of Kafar Daryan....

  continua / continued avanti - next    [109879] [ 27-oct-2014 01:32 ECT ]

The war on Gaza: Where did the resistance go wrong?
Saleh Al-Naami

September 23, 2014 - It is neither worthwhile nor sufficient for the Palestinian resistance to celebrate its great show of resistance during the war on Gaza and its success in preventing the success of Zionist schemes and Israeli aggressions on Gaza. On the contrary, it must consider the value of its military operations and consider its shortcomings as well as the path of the war and its consequences. The most important factor to remember is that the Palestinian resistance was dragged into a war during the most unfavourable regional and internal conditions to occur in the history of the Palestinian cause...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109878] [ 27-oct-2014 01:19 ECT ]

'Made in Palestine': New slogan for marketing Israeli products
Middle East Monitor

Sepember 23, 2014 - Along one of the roads in the city of Ariha in the north of the occupied West Bank, merchants Khaldoun and Hassan regularly receive 30 tons of dates produced in the neighbouring Israeli agricultural settlements, in preparation for their transfer to one of the packaging factories built on the outskirts of the city, Anadolu news agency reported. Inside the factory, about 13 miners are working on "screening" the dates and repackaging them in bags that read "dates of the Holy Land" in both Arabic and English and "Made in Palestine" in order to market them locally, in the Arab states and in Europe.
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109877] [ 27-oct-2014 00:59 ECT ]

Syria News - September 22, 2014
Local Coordination Committees of Syria

September 22, 2014 - By the end of Monday, LCC were able to document 51 martyrs including 5 women, 4 children and 3 martyrs under torture: 22 martyrs were reported in Damascus and its suburbs; 9 in Hama; 5 in Aleppo; 5 in Idlib; 5 in Daraa; 4 in Homs and 1 martyr in Deir Ezzor...
  continua / continued avanti - next    [109876] [ 27-oct-2014 00:02 ECT ]

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