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Al Nakba Redux

January 22nd, 2009

Stephen Lendman

For Palestinians, the Nakba "Catastrophe" is their "Holocaust" six-month slaughter and displacement before and after the May 1948 establishment of Israel. In December 1947, Jews in Palestine numbered 600,000 compared to 1.3 million Palestinians. David Ben-Gurion ordered them removed and for "Every end with occupation, destruction and expulsion."

He meant depopulation, destruction, mass slaughter, displacement, and erasing a proud people's history. Palestine was to become Israel. Most of the job was completed, more in 1967, and thereafter incrementally until total dispossession is achieved. Gaza is the latest battleground. More ahead is planned. The struggle for liberation continues.

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The Transfer of Lethal Power

January 22nd, 2009

Arun Shrivastava

This is the first time I watched the inauguration of any US President. My interest was fired more because of an increasing network of very concerned American friends who want a more humane society: for themselves and for the rest of the world.

Watching from half a world away, the entire drama was worth a stock shot. Many people waving flags, some in solemn contemplation, and others with a ray of hope that better days are here again and bad old days are gone.

Obama was consistent. He turned out to be the epitome of a political class that has perfected the art of saying much without meaning anything serious. Perhaps, instead of Aretha Franklin and Yo Yo Ma, Gilad Atzmon could have done a better job with his gut wrenching 'Pizza On The Park' and added some realism to the grand US$170-million political opera. Solemn occasions demand soul and a bit of classical to pacify the troubled souls of the glitterati and the chatteratti. The democracy was shivering, and clapping to keep warm, while the soulless sociopaths were jingling their diamonds and pearls, whispering inanities to each other, for jobs consistently well done. Here was another.

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"Exterminate all the Brutes": Gaza 2009

January 22nd, 2009

Noam Chomsky

On Saturday December 27, the latest US-Israeli attack on helpless Palestinians was launched. The attack had been meticulously planned, for over 6 months according to the Israeli press. The planning had two components: military and propaganda. It was based on the lessons of Israel's 2006 invasion of Lebanon, which was considered to be poorly planned and badly advertised. We may, therefore, be fairly confident that most of what has been done and said was pre-planned and intended.

That surely includes the timing of the assault: shortly before noon, when children were returning from school and crowds were milling in the streets of densely populated Gaza City. It took only a few minutes to kill over 225 people and wound 700, an auspicious opening to the mass slaughter of defenseless civilians trapped in a tiny cage with nowhere to flee.

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Happy Hour: Breaking the Spell of Power

January 21st, 2009

Chris Floyd

I'm not "writing Obama off" -- whatever that means. I'm just looking at what he is actually saying, his actual positions, and what he has actually done -- and not done -- in the U.S. Senate.

Yesterday, Arthur Silber pointed us to a most learned Theban with an observation apt for inauguration day:

You're living in a world of make-believe, with flowers and bells and leprechauns and magic frogs with funny little hats. -- Homer Simpson, Ph.D., M.D., Psy.D., D.O., D.S.W., Ed.D., D.C.M., D.Min., J.D., D.C.H., from his seminal work, Meditations on the Transmigrational Nature of Perambulating Observances (sometimes referred to more informally as, Don't Bullshit a Bullshitter.)

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Why God does not belong at inaugurations

January 21st, 2009

Mary Shaw

Inauguration Day 2009 was almost perfect. I'm still moved by it all.

I was impressed by the fact that an African American became President of the United States of America in my lifetime.

I was impressed by the crowd of almost two million people who braved the brutally cold weather to stand for hours and hours in Washington, DC, to witness history in the making.

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January 21st, 2009

Carolyn Bennett

In the Twenty-Fourth Day Al Jazeera is reporting “Israeli troops and tanks were on the move on heading away from some key points in Gaza towards the border but it remained unclear whether they would withdraw completely from the Palestinian territory: …The Israeli military says it will not draw up a timetable to leave until rocket fire ceases and will not have a deadline dictated to them by Hamas: … ‘The operation is not over. This is only a holding of fire’.”

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Barak Obama - Judas Goat

January 21st, 2009

Joe Quinn

[This was written in Aug. 2007.] Cute, cuddly, harmless-looking, liberal Barack Obama. Now there's a guy to get the U.S. back on track! If he can just 'win' the primary (s)election process, and then the (s)election process after that, what's it called...oh yeah, the (p)residential (s)elections, he'll bring an end to the mindless massacring of innocent civilians for profit that has come to define the "war on terror", and the American people need never again be stirred out of their mind-numbing complacency by stories of small brown children being decapitated by a brave American teenager with a .50 caliber machine gun. I mean, Viet-nam and My Lai was containable, it was successfully pitched as an "American tragedy", but this Iraq business is getting out of hand! After all, the harsh realities of war 'over there' are meant to stay 'over there', not ooze out of the carefully manipulated American daily broadsheets and into the fragile mind of the average American. So Obama's the man to fix it all, right? He'll stop the Republican rot! Or am I missing something? Yeah, you guessed it, I'm missing something.

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January 21st, 2009

Steve Amsel

You may have noticed that my Associate, Khalid Amayreh, has not posted on this Blog (Desert Peace) for the last few days. The following report will tell you why.

In collaboration with the occupational forces operating in the Palestinian territories, he has been arrested. His crime? Speaking out against injustice and corruption.

The following was just sent to me by one of my readers in Palestine….. I will report updates on this situation as they become available.

I am very disturbed by this news. We need an open, unequivocal condemnation of this Zio-imperial vomit called the Palestinian Authority (PA). I cannot express enough the rage I feel. This truly courageous Palestinian journalist/ patriotic voice is being abused and tortured in an attempt to silence him no doubt by the US-paid, US-armed, US-Arab stooge-trained Palestinian Security Apparatus/goons/ ‘Contras’ , under President Falafel/Abbas his Mafia crew and the unelected Fayyad-led Junta of collaborators, thieves and scum that have established a brutal police state with all that this means, without even the need of a state, not even a Falafel State/Bantustan/ ethnic people’s reserve or “warehouse for excess Arabs”. The PA is a Palestinian Judenrat in the service of Empire and the Zionist occupation of Palestine. It is composed of quisling, stooge Palestinians, implementing anti-Palestinian policy on behalf of the Zio-Nazi occupation and this occupation’s Master and regional partners. Palestinians are made to disappear wholesale but in practice, it is done, one at a time. This is a Palestinian that Palestine cannot afford to lose. Please advise as to what can be done to secure the release of this noble voice.

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Who needs hasbara when you have AP 'analysis'?

January 21st, 2009


Steve Gutkin - Foreign Press Association chairman, AP W. Jerusalem bureau chief, and hasbara master"Israelis . . . see themselves as a besieged nation surrounded by enemies who want them dead. Given the rocket attacks from both Hezbollah and Hamas — and the suicide bombing campaigns that killed hundreds of Israelis — their fears are not misplaced.

"Many Israelis believe Iranian proxies such as Hezbollah and Hamas can never be diverted from their stated goal of eliminating the Jewish state no matter how much goodwill Israel might show." [1]

To a vast majority of readers, that excerpt is just a typical analysis from one of the world's largest, oldest, and most trusted news organizations. But to any honest person adequately versed in the contemporary history of Israel-Palestine, those two paragraphs are typical hasbara, a.k.a., Israeli propaganda. But it's actually both: it's the Israeli-centric analysis of Steve Gutkin, West Jerusalem bureau chief for The Associated Press.

Gutkin, like any hasbaranik, omits the most vital and basic facts: that Israel illegally and belligerently occupies and colonizes Palestinian land; that Israel has practically "eliminated" any chance for Palestinian self-determination; and that Israel is the regional superpower subsidized by the world's superpower and, thus, it is ridiculous to even entertain the notion of its being eliminated by army-less, navy-less groups. Under international law, the first fact legitimates violent Palestinian resistance. But AP is not bothered by legal and moral restraints — at least not the ones that restrain the allegedly-Jewish state.

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Today in Solidarity We're All Palestinians

January 20th, 2009

Stephen Lendman

World outrage continues over Israeli war crimes and Washington's complicity. Gazans are now immortalized. Hamas is more popular than ever and remains resolute despite everything the IDF threw against it.

Democrats and Republicans share equal guilt. They fund Israeli state terror, are partnered in its aggression, and have collaboratively planned, supported, and/or agreed to it for the past 41 years. Continuity under Obama is assured. The current Gaza carnage is the worst since 1967. In spite of its "unilateral" ceasefire, sporadic Israeli attacks continue. The IDF merely redeployed. Gaza remains under siege, and human suffering is overwhelming and unrelieved.

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