5000 Years of History in the Middle East

This is an excellent animation which illustrates the fallacy of Zionist claims to Israel’s current terrortory.

There’s a new book out challenging the fallacious Zionist narrative of Israel.

What if the Palestinian Arabs who have lived for decades under the heel of the modern Israeli state are in fact descended from the very same “children of Israel” described in the Old Testament?

And what if most modern Israelis aren’t descended from the ancient Israelites at all, but are actually a mix of Europeans, North Africans and others who didn’t “return” to the scrap of land we now call Israel and establish a new state following the attempt to exterminate them during World War II, but came in and forcefully displaced people whose ancestors had lived there for millennia?

What if the entire tale of the Jewish Diaspora — the story recounted at Passover tables by Jews around the world every year detailing the ancient Jews’ exile from Judea, the years spent wandering through the desert, their escape from the Pharaoh’s clutches — is all wrong?

That’s the explosive thesis of When and How Was the Jewish People Invented?, a book by Tel Aviv University scholar Shlomo Zand (or Sand) that sent shockwaves across Israeli society when it was published last year. After 19 weeks on the Israeli best-seller list, the book is being translated into a dozen languages and will be published in the United States this year by Verso.

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Zand’s central argument is that the Romans didn’t expel whole nations from their territories. Zand estimates that perhaps 10,000 ancient Judeans were vanquished during the Roman wars, and the remaining inhabitants of ancient Judea remained, converting to Islam and assimilating with their conquerors when Arabs subjugated the area. They became the progenitors of today’s Palestinian Arabs, many of whom now live as refugees who were exiled from their homeland during the 20th century.

This narrative has huge significance in terms of Israel’s national identity. If Judaism is a religion, rather than “a people” descended from a dispersed nation, then it brings into question the central justification for the state of Israel remaining a “Jewish state.”

And that brings us to Zand’s second assertion. He argues that the story of the Jewish nation — the transformation of the Jewish people from a group with a shared cultural identity and religious faith into a vanquished “people” — was a relatively recent invention, hatched in the 19th century by Zionist scholars and advanced by the Israeli academic establishment. It was, argues Zand, an intellectual conspiracy of sorts. Segev says, “It’s all fiction and myth that served as an excuse for the establishment of the State of Israel.”

The book has very important ramifications for the development of a future one state solution.

But the idea of a single, binational state has more recently been marginalized — dismissed as an attempt to destroy Israel literally and physically, rather than as an ethnic and religious-based political entity with a population of second-class Arab citizens and the legacy of responsibility for world’s longest-standing refugee population.

A logical conclusion of Zand’s work exposing Israel’s founding mythology may be the restoration of the idea of a one-state solution to a legitimate place in the debate over this contentious region. After all, while it muddies the waters in one sense — raising ancient, biblical questions about just who the “children of Israel” really are — in another sense, it hints at the commonalities that exist between Israeli Jews and Palestinian Arabs. Both groups lay claim to the same crust of earth, both have faced historic repression and displacement and both hold dear the idea that they should have a “right of return.”

And if both groups in fact share common biblical ties, then it begs the question of why the entirety of what was Palestine under the British mandate should remain a refuge for people of one religion instead of being a country in which Jews and Arabs are guaranteed equal protection — equal protection under the laws of a state whose legitimacy would never again be open to question.

Boycott Israel & Their Supporters

We have boycotted Israeli products as far as practicable for all our lives – for the oppressive Occupation and brutality perpetrated by the apartheid pariah state has been going on that long. Perhaps at this point we should make it clear that we regard all people as deserving of human rights and justice, regardless of race, religion and culture. The justice we’d prefer for Israel’s arch mass murderers would be long prison terms.

Barghouti illuminates for us how academic freedom in Israel includes the freedom to call for killing of others including mass murder despite declarations of genocide being a war crime, let alone just the illegality of inciting of violence and racial hatred in most western countries.

Despite its substantial Arab-Palestinian student population, Haifa University harbors, or at least tolerates, a culture of racism — against Arabs in general and Palestinians in particular — which manifests itself in the fact that members of its faculty espouse racist “theories,” publish bigoted research papers, and advocate ethnic cleansing with impunity. The university has consistently and systematically failed to censure such academics or to properly investigate accusations of racism raised against them.

It provides institutional support to racist academics and their research activities. The most notorious of these academics is Arnon Sofer, chair of geo-strategy at Haifa University and vice-chair of its Center for National Security Studies. He is also known in Israel as the prophet of the “Arab demographic threat.” He takes credit for the route of the Israeli apartheid wall — declared illegal by the International Court of Justice in the Hague, on July 9, 2004 — saying, “This is exactly my map.”

Prof. Sofer, who views the high birth rate of the Bedouin Palestinian citizens of Israel as a “tragedy,” and has no patience for “democracy and pretty words,” [6] has for many years openly advocated “voluntary transfer” — or soft ethnic cleansing — of Palestinians in the occupied territories as well as Palestinian citizens of Israel, in order to guarantee “a Zionist-Jewish state with an overwhelming majority of Jews.” In one particularly telling prediction, Sofer says, “When 2.5 million [Palestinians] live in a closed-off Gaza, those people will become even bigger animals than they are today, with the aid of an insane fundamentalist Islam. So, if we want to remain alive, we will have to kill and kill and kill. All day, every day. If we don’t kill, we will cease to exist. The only thing that concerns me is how to ensure that the [Jewish] boys and men who are going to have to do the killing will be able to return home to their families and be normal human beings.” [7]

According to Barghouti there are however taboos within academia:

“The Zionist ideology which stipulates that Israel must retain its Jewish majority is a non-debatable given in the country — and the bedrock of opposition to allowing the return of Palestinian refugees. The very few intellectuals who dare to question this sacred cow are labeled ‘extremists’.” Ben-Dor attacks those in the Israeli “left” who opposed the boycott as “sophisticated accomplices to the smothering of debate .”

That antisocial, dysfunctional, racist behaviour is tolerated amongst academic leaders may explain in some way how Israeli politicians have made calls to violence so frequently throughout the short, violent existence of Israel without censure, committal to psychiatric institutions or jail. When leaders express sociopathic murderous intent, they can engender it amongst the populace as well. This promotion of violence as a public ethic may also explain the feelings of Israel’s neighbours toward it. Israel – paranoid, sociopathic and suffering from a bad case of Munchausen’s Syndrome by Proxy.

Boycott calls renewed after Israel bombs University Teachers Assn.

The Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott learned today from its Steering Committee member Dr. Haidar Eid that the headquarters of the University Teachers Association-Palestine, in Gaza, was bombed by the Israeli occupation forces during their indiscriminate, willful destruction campaign in the Tel al-Hawa neighborhood of Gaza City on Friday.

This latest wanton attack on an academic organization is far from being an exception. It is only the latest episode in what Oxford University academic Karma Nabulsi has termed “scholasticide,” or Israel’s systematic and intentional destruction of Palestinian education centers. In its current war on Gaza alone, Israel has bombed the ministry of education, the Islamic University of Gaza, and tens of schools, including at least four UNRWA [the United Nations agency for Palestine refugees] schools, after having largely destroyed the infrastructure of teaching throughout the year and a half of its illegal and criminal siege of the densely populated Gaza Strip.

Specifically, and as a minimal response to these Israeli atrocities and grave violations of international law and the most basic human rights, PACBI calls on academics, academic unions, intellectuals, cultural workers and institutions the world over to intensify the boycott of all Israeli academic and cultural institutions due to their complicity in the Israeli occupation and other forms of oppression against the Palestinian people. Putting an end to Israel’s impunity and holding it accountable is the moral responsibility of every conscientious human being today.

Here’s some links to assist you to support Palestinian rights when next you go shopping.

Palestinian Mothers

Boycott Israel Campaign

Israel’s attack on Gaza demonstrated clearly the need for Boycott, Divestment & Sanctions (BDS)

Israel’s bar code prefix is 729. More information here.

Israeli fruit and veg leave a bitter aftertaste

Finally, in case a hasbaranik tries to convince you to rip out the Intel chip in your computer – Intel has 3 manufacturing plants in China, the US and Israel.

For those who try to tell you cell phones were invented in Israel

Veolia looses 3,5 billion EUR contract in Sweden – this is a significant loss for Israeli industry brought about by concerned citizens in Stockholm.

Oxford City Council boycotts Israel

This is clearly another sign of the importance for commercial actors not to have their brand associated to unethical behaviour, in the case of illegal settlements on occupied Palestinian territory we can already see a trend of international companies who are moving out their operations from settlements, says Joakim Wohlfeil at the Swedish development organization Diakonia.

Get involved with the Global Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions Program to help Palestine and stop Israeli apartheid.

BOYCOTT ISRAEL! Launched in Marawi City – Philippines

A Moral Choice – Divesting from the Israeli Occupation

International Writers and Scholars Endorse Academic Boycott of Israel

We reject as false Israel’s characterization of its military attacks on Gaza as retaliation. Israel’s latest assault on Gaza is part of its longtime racist jurisprudence against its indigenous Palestinian population, during which the Israeli state has systematically dispossessed, starved, tortured, and economically exploited the Palestinian people.

We reject as untrue the Israeli government’s claims that the Palestinians use civilians as human shields, and that Hamas is an irredeemable terrorist organization. Without endorsing its platforms or philosophy, we recognize Hamas as a democratically elected ruling party. We do not endorse the regime of any existing Arab state, and call for the upholding of internationally mandated human rights and democratic elections in all Arab states.

Why I’m Boycotting Israeli Produce:

Fruit and vegetable exports are crucial to the Israeli economy. A consumer boycott of agricultural produce exerts direct economic pressure where it matters

Israel’s agricultural exporting company, Carmel Agrexco, is one of the biggest suppliers of fresh produce to the UK.

We can use the same tactic against Israel that was so effective in showing up South Africa as the apartheid state it once was. The parallels with South Africa are striking. Writing in the Guardian, Naomi Klein recently reminded us of the words of Ronnie Kasrils, a prominent South African politician, who said in 2007 that the segregation he saw in the West Bank and Gaza was “infinitely worse than apartheid”.

So what, exactly, is he talking about? While we have been munching our way through its avocadoes, Israel has demolished Palestinian homes, evicted their occupants and expropriated their land and water resources. It has illegally colonised productive Palestinian land with waves of settlers. A boycott of Israeli fruit and vegetables, as opposed to other sorts of boycott (academic, sporting), is particularly apt because horticulture has been a major plank of Israeli expansion. Medjoul dates in the Jordan Valley, for example, base their operations on confiscated Palestinian land, in contravention of international law and the Fourth Geneva Convention.

As if that wasn’t enough, Israel has effectively imprisoned Palestinians with checkpoints, an illegal wall and an oppressive system of travel permits and colour-coded identity cards, so scuppering Palestinian economic development. As OXFAM told the House of Commons International Development Committee (pdf), costs for Palestinians who want to export products are up to 70% higher than for Israelis. Settlers in the West Bank get direct access to markets in and through Israel without the disruptive road blocks and transfers faced by the Palestinians who are obliged to rely on Israeli intermediaries. The revenue from taxes and customs goes to Israel, which costs the Palestinian economy 3% of its GDP a year.

By refusing to buy Israeli produce, ethically-minded consumers can be part of the wider Boycott Israeli Goods campaign (BIG) and add to the international condemnation of Israel’s tactics in Palestine. The reasons for a boycott precede the most recent open conflict and are ever-more important. Even if the current shaky ceasefire holds, Gaza will still be an open prison and Palestine will still be a country whose food economy is actively sabotaged by its powerful neighbour. Just at the moment, many people don’t have any appetite for Israeli produce. A boycott gives us something to do about it.

Congressman Keith Ellison – understanding the Palestinian narrative

Keith Ellison, a US congressman for the state of Minnesota and the only Muslim to be elected to US congress, talks to Al Jazeera’s Shihab Rattansi about the Israeli offensive in Gaza and why he feels so few US politicians understand the Middle East.

Ellison also draws attention to possible US complicity in war crimes through the use of US supplied weaponry by Israel.

In further updates, Hugo Chavez has expelled the Israeli Ambassador.

Israel will halt its bombardment of Gaza for three hours daily to allow residents of the Gaza to obtain much-needed supplies.

However, Israel insists it has already allowed enough supplies into Gaza during the conflict, although the UN says there is a humanitarian crisis because of shortages of food, fuel and medicines.

Heba, a Gaza resident and mother of two, told Al Jazeera there was no place left in Gaza that can be considered safe.

“What happened in the school was a hugely offensive and inhumane thing. We never expected that people who sought refuge in a UN building would be attacked and killed,” she said.

Randa Seniora, from the Independent Commission on Human Rights, told Al Jazeera: “What is happening in Gaza are crimes against humanity.

“Israel cannot claim, as an occupying authority, that it is acting in self defence because simply it is considered a war crime to create harm and damage among civilian populations.”

@AJGaza Hamas says it will not fire rockets into Israel during the same period of time, Al Jazeera’s correspondent reports.

@AJGaza Shelling heard in #Gaza during Israel’s three hour ceasefire to allow Palestinians access to aid, Al Jazeera’s Sherine Tadros reports.

@AJGaza Five houses in #Gaza hit by Israeli air attacks ten minutes into Israel’s three-hour pause in hostilities, Al Jazeera’s correspondent says.

@AJGaza One rocket and two mortars fired from #Gaza by Izz al-Din Qassam Brigades, the military wing of Hamas, thirty minutes into hostility pause.

@AJGaza Israeli apache helicopters open fire in Beit Lahiya, Al Jazeera’s correspondent reports.

@AJGaza Nicolas Sarkozy, the French president, says Israel and the Palestinian Authority had accepted a truce plan for #Gaza announced by Egypt.

Are Hamas being marginalised in this pseudo-truce? – Israel and the PA are already in cahoots, there hasn’t needed to be a truce between them. Has Abbas received the nod from the big boys?

Has Al Qaeda been taking lessons from neocons? or from Israel and their “proportionate responses”?

(CNN) — An audio message reportedly from al Qaeda’s deputy chief vows revenge for Israel’s air and ground assault on Gaza and calls the Jewish state’s actions against Hamas militants “a gift” from U.S. President-elect Barack Obama.

Al Qaeda’s Ayman al-Zawahiri is said to address Muslims in Gaza in an audio message released Tuesday.

The speaker, identified as Ayman al-Zawahiri, addresses Muslims in Gaza. He said the violence “is one part of a series of a crusade war against Islam and these air strikes are a gift from Obama before he takes office, and (Egyptian President) Hosni Mubarak, that traitor, is the main partner in your siege and killing.”

The message, posted Tuesday on various Islamist Web sites with a picture of al-Zawahiri next to an image of a wounded child, urges militants to rally against Israel.

“My Muslim brothers and mujahedeens in Gaza and all over Palestine, with the help of God we are with you in the battle, we will direct our strikes against the crusader Jewish coalition wherever we can.”

@AJGaza Osama Hamdan, Hamas representative in Lebanon, says Franco-Egyptian peace initiative “still being discussed”.

@AJGaza Israel’s pause in hostilities to allow Palestinians access to aid only applied to #Gaza City in the #Gaza strip, Israel says.

Even to say Hamas is the cause of this is to blame the rape victim for what she was wearing.

@rafahkid Binational state? Not a chance because Israel has to be Jewish. Two states? Not a chance because Palestine has the resources. So, we die.

The UNHRC is holding a special session on Friday on Gaza

at the request of Islamic and developing countries as well as Russia.

The formal request — from 29 members of the 47-nation body — says the session should discuss “the grave violations of human rights in the Occupied Palestinian Territory including the recent aggression in the Occupied Gaza Strip.”

Resolutions issued by the Council are not binding.

Still, a resolution now might add to the weight of proceedings at Le Hague later on when the war criminals are tried.

@AJGaza Israel’s halt in fire agreement applies to whole of #Gaza and not just #Gaza City, correcting earlier statement, Israeli military says.

FURTHER UPDATES

Hamas will not accept a permanent truce without an end to the occupation and opening of the crossings i.e. end to the terrible blockade which Israel has inflicted on its less than model concentration camp for nearly 2 years. Sounds reasonable. Perhaps Hamas feels the world is paying attention, and now is as good a time as any to make a stand?

Of SubPrimes and Pigs in Shit

Howard WallowingWith the passing of the Ides of March, we have strong suspicions that the second market correction may be over – will there be a third? It is possible the subdued buying of resources – first copper, then zinc – by the Chinese in the past little while was deliberately orchestrated to engineer prices down to coincide with the beginning of the Year of the Gold Pig. Of relevance here may be the decision by the Whorestralian government last December to remove capital gains taxes for foreign investors and the more recent Chinese government decision not to impose capital gains tax on their investors. Metals prices rose strongly last night. Will the bull market resume or will the crazy crazy selloff of our precious resources continue unabated?

A Porky MonarchyWho wouldn’t like to have been a cashed up Chinese investor this year, rolling in US dollars, eager to drop them into cheap physical resources as the United Stupids economy sags under the weight of precarious hedge and subprime mortage funds and a tenuous bond market?

And where better to invest than in relatively insulated CGT free rich Australian resources at bargain basement prices – particularly uranium (Citic has been buying up more SAU this week), gold and zinc.

Kiss goodbye to your birthright treasures, fellow Whorestralians – and don’t expect to reap any of the proceeds of the fire sale in additional community services in this election year – Howard’s mudslingers need every cent to artificially deflate the trade deficit, to buy more crappy US jet fighters and electioneering pork. And as for you pathetic, whinging Whorestralian mortgagees, get ready to wear another interest rate rise you have to have, trust me, it’s for your own good,.

The Vatican Rag 11

http://www.amergold.com/library/InvestmentCaseForGold.shtml

“The invariable response to market shocks that threatened the now infamous virtuous circle of a strong currency and the bull market was decisive market intervention by the Federal Reserve and US Treasury. For example:

– Market crises triggered by the Asian meltdown, the Russian default, the collapse of LTCM, and plummeting stock prices post the NASDAQ mania, were countered by injections of liquidity by the Federal Reserve along with high profile public statements of assurance to the markets.

– The cosmetics of low inflation were fortified by debasement of Bureau of Labor Statistics inflation measures through dubious hedonic price adjustments and false productivity measures.

– A flare up in the gold price caused by a short squeeze following the Washington Agreement in 1999 was doused by fresh liquidity solicited from Kuwait, the Vatican, and Singapore. As discussed later, these maneuvers included mobilization of US gold reserves.

– The attempt to bring down long-term rates by suspending issuance of 30-year treasuries is the most recent and clumsiest of notable anti-market actions.

– In the true spirit of globalization, the government of Italy manipulated its own bond market to hide the true size of its budget deficit in order to be admitted to the European single currency. In a report published by the International Securities Market Association (November, 01), a currency bond swap was completed in 1997 to mask the true size of the country’s internal deficit. The transaction was orchestrated by Long Term Capital Management, which counted the Italian Central Bank among its clients.”

http://www.hbs.edu/bhr/archives/bookreviews/79/pwosh2.pdf#search=%22the%20vatican%20gold%20investments%22

“This newly unearthed evidence leads
Pollard to conclude that the 1930s witnessed a revolutionary moment in Vatican financial
history. As a result of the Lateran Pacts of 1929, the Holy See received a cash payment
of 750 million lire from the Mussolini government, thereby stabilizing papal finances.
Nogara used this money to pioneer a new investment strategy that involved building up
gold reserves, diversifying into property, experimenting with various forms of arbitrage,
cultivating close connections with Swiss banks, and investing heavily in Italian economic
enterprises. As a result, by the middle of the 1930s, the Vatican “was placed at the centre
of a world-wide network of banking, and other financial institutions” (p. 168), and its
traditional financial portfolio had been irrevocably altered.”

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vatican_Bank

“The Vatican Bank was a successful and profitable bank. By the 1990s, the Bank had invested somewhere over US$10 billion in foreign companies. Part of what made the Bank so profitable was that it offered certain illegal services; for 5%, the Bank would launder industrialists’ money, or money of those well-connected with the Catholic Church. The money laundering scandal leaked out in 1968 due to a change in Italian financial regulations, which would have mandated more transparency. To prevent the scandal that would occur when the public learned that the Vatican Bank (which was supposed to funnel all profits directly and immediately to charity) had in fact retained most of its profits and expanded its operations, Pope Paul VI enlisted Michele Sindona as papal finance advisor to sell off assets and move money overseas to hide the full extent of Vatican wealth”

http://www.hartford-hwp.com/archives/62/266.html
http://www.cloakanddagger.de/media/where_the_vatican_wealth_is_stor.htm
http://www.chick.com/reading/books/153/153_10.asp