UN General Assembly: Israel’s actions in Jerusalem are null and void by Anthony Lawson

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UN General Assembly: Israel’s actions in Jerusalem are null and void

By

Anthony Lawson

MEMO | November 27, 2014

 

The United Nations General Assembly adopted six resolutions regarding Israeli occupied territories through a recorded vote last night, addressing the areas of Jerusalem and the Syrian Golan.

In terms of Jerusalem, the Assembly voted on a resolution confirming that all legislative and administrative measures taken by Israel to change the legal status of the Holy City of Jerusalem are null and void.

The decision was supported by a recorded vote of 144 countries in favour, six countries opposed, namely Canada, Israel, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Palau and United States, while ten countries abstained from the vote (Australia, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Madagascar, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Togo and Tonga and Vanuatu).

The Assembly also adopted a resolution that stressed the need for Israel, the occupying power, to withdraw from the occupied Palestinian territories, and demanded the complete cessation of all Israeli settlement activity and Israel’s compliance with its obligations under international law.

The Assembly’s decision also outlined the need for delivering humanitarian and medical aid to the Palestinians.

Another decision was implemented regarding the Syrian Golan Heights as a result of the Assembly’s concern for Israel’s lack of compliance with Resolution 497 (issued in 1981) calling on Israel to withdraw its forces from the Golan Heights which have been illegally occupied since 1967. The decision was supported by 99 countries, rejected by six, while 57 (mostly European) countries abstained from the vote.

We can only sit and wonder when some Apartheid-Zionist-Jewish-Israel-loving nation will blow this out of the water, just as Israel tried to blow the USS Liberty out of the water in June, 1967.  Will it be the United States applying its veto?

And just look at the nations controlled by the grubby little bribe takers: Stephen Harper of Canada and Australia’s Tony Abbott, who either voted against the six resolutions, or abstained; openly admitting that land-theft and prisoner-of-war slaying are permissible, as long as the Jewish State of Israel can cloak them in some kind of constitutionally fraudulent legalese.

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Shame on them!

And look at their expressions.  What are they thinking?

“This should be worth a nice a good-sized packet of Shekels.”

Anthony Lawson — with thanks to aletho for bringing it to my notice.

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Only fools believe what they are told, when it is clear that much else is being hidden.

 

Kourosh Ziabari Interview with Canadian Professor Denis Rancourt – Fars News Agency

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Editor’s Note: The following interview with Professor Rancourt is undoubtedly one of the finest contributions toward a greater understanding of how the West has been slowly taken over by the Zionist agenda. Whether we wish to view it (as Professor Rancourt appears to), as the American Empire using Israel for its own greater hegemonic agenda or whether we tend to see it as World Jewry’s take-over of the American government via stealth in order to commandeer its resources and exploit them for Zionism’s global conquest, Rancourt’s analysis of how this process has unfolded to the ongoing detriment of the Palestinian people is superlative.
 
The interview also succinctly explains the depth and degree of collusion which the various Zionist forces and their sycophants here in Canada went to in order to illegally remove Professor Rancourt from his academic position at the University of Ottawa and then to further exacerbate his unjust treatment by pursuing him with a defamation suit that basically bankrupt the man. Such extremely vexatious acts on the part of Allan Rock and the University of Ottawa, aided and abetted by Canada’s Zionist-controlled media, border on sadism and are a vivid reminder of just how cruel and criminal the Zionist cartel can be when it comes to protecting its own racket of death and destruction at any cost should Canadians have the audacity to exhibit their lawful constitutional right to freedom of expression. In this case Professor Rancourt’s only “crime” was to question the right of Israel’s ongoing genocide of the Palestinian people.
 
I suppose Denis Rancourt might be expected to consider himself lucky that he wasn’t also slapped with a sec. 319(2) Criminal Code of Canada “Hate Propaganda” charge on top of all the other woes he’s been subjected to by the Zionist-controlled judiciary here in Canada. I’m sure that they would love to send him to jail for a couple of years just as they are trying to do to me in order to reinforce their intimidation and threats to all of Canada’s academia never to question their authority or their evil designs.
 
Professor Rancourt has taken a courageous stand and like myself he needs your help in order to defend himself against all of these spurious charges that have resulted from his expressing his opinions on matters relevant to Canada’s democratic principles. For further information and contact please see:
Email contact: denis.rancourt@gmail.com

Funding campaign

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Kourosh Ziabari – Fars News Agency: A Canadian scholar and academic, who was fired from the university where he was teaching because of his pro-Palestinian viewpoints, believes the US government is funding and supporting Israel for its continued bloodletting in the Middle East.

According to Prof. Denis Rancourt, Israel’s plan in the Middle East is ethnic cleansing and the total obliteration of Palestine and its citizens in order to realize a colonial, imperial agenda backed by the US military, economic and finance empire.

“Israel’s program is to eradicate or neutralize all Palestinians who make claim to a home in Palestine. This is exactly what Israel has been doing since before its artificial creation,” said Prof. Rancourt in an exclusive interview with Fars News Agency.

“Israel’s program is planned incremental dispossession and an ongoing attempted genocide. This has been repeatedly and explicitly expressed by the Zionist architects and executioners,” he noted.

Prof. Denis Rancourt has also praised the resistance movement in the Gaza Strip for its steadfastness against the Israeli aggression during the past two months, maintaining that it was awe-inspiring that Hamas could kill some 70 invading Israeli soldiers.

Denis Rancourt is a former professor of physics at the University of Ottawa. In the fall of 2008, he was removed from all teaching duties under the pretext that he had granted A+ grades to 23 students in one course during the winter 2008 semester; however, it’s quite clear to everybody that his outspoken criticism of Israel and his pro-Palestinian activism had triggered his dismissal from the university. Prof. Rancourt’s classes were always attended by tens of students and he was considered as one of the popular university professors at the Faculty of Science.

Rancourt has published more than 100 academic papers. He was a member of Ottawa-Carleton Institute for Physics and the Ottawa-Carleton Geoscience Centre. He is the author of the book “Hierarchy and Free Expression in the Fight Against Racism.”

During the Israeli war on the Gaza Strip that just ended on August 26 following the victory of Hamas and the declaration of ceasefire between the Israeli regime and the resistance movement, FNA did an interview with Prof. Denis Rancourt on the influence of the Israeli lobby over the media, politicians and universities in the West, the history of Israel-Canada relations and the international reactions to the recent Israeli war on Gaza. The following is the text of this in-depth interview.

Q: What’s your viewpoint regarding the influence of the Israeli lobby on the universities and academic unions in the West, especially in the North America? The case of your dismissal from your position as a professor at the University of Ottawa was simply one of numerous instances showing that the Israeli lobby can easily manipulate the university officials in the West into making illegal decisions and expelling the disobedient academicians, just like the Prof. Steven Salaita who has been recently fired from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign for his comments criticizing the Israeli massacre in the Gaza Strip. How has Israel gained such an influence over the academic institutions in the West?

A: The Israel Lobby has the role of chief-whip for the US military-economic-finance empire; Empire, for short. That is, the Lobby ensures doctrinal discipline among Western, that is, US-aligned politicians, intellectuals, and the media, regarding the Empire’s Middle East policy. I mean “intellectual” in the broad sense of any professional who has influence, and “media” in the broad sense of anyone who communicates to others.

The Empire’s main geopolitical focus presently is the Middle East, where the Empire is dedicated to actively and continuously prevent liberation and coalescence of Arab nations, so as to keep control of the territory and the energy resources. To achieve this, the Empire’s main policy in the Middle East is Israel, which is charged with continual war and sabotage against all Middle Eastern entities that would vie for independence from the Empire.

Thus, the Empire, via Israel, is embarked on a vicious and murderous project without an end in the Middle East, and this unsavory project must be sold to the Empire’s home populations, including both managers and ordinary citizens. That is the role of the Israel Lobby; to sell Israel and the continuous and deliberate carnage as acceptable and unavoidable.

That is why the Israel Lobby is actively engaged is creating Islamophobia, in exaggerating anti-Semitism, in constructing Nazi-holocaust remembrance, in suppressing academic freedom, in suppressing freedom of the press, in “finding” and pursuing alleged “terrorists”, in developing anti-speech [or] “anti-hate” laws, in promoting cultural ties with Israel, in attacking Muslim associations, and so on.

As such, the work of the Israel Lobby includes hundreds of ongoing campaigns to intimidate, discipline, fire, and vilify academics who dare to be critical of Israel or of US Middle East policy. The list of shut-out and targeted academics is a long one and includes the well-known cases of Joel Kovel, Ward Churchill, Norman Finkelstein, James Petras, Terri Ginsberg, William Robinson, David F. Noble, Steven Salaita, Iymen Chehade, and many others. The more an academic is threatening to the Lobby, the more aggressively that academic is attacked.

My own case is also an example. I was a tenured Full Professor of physics at the University of Ottawa in Canada’s capital city. I am an internationally recognized researcher and I taught in both the Faculty of Science and the Faculty of Arts. I was publicly critical of the university president’s paid trip to Israel. I invited Palestinian speakers into my classrooms to talk about Gaza, and geopolitical analysts who were critical of Israel. These moves led to condemnation of me in the Zionist mainstream media, and to discipline, which was overturned. In 2008, a new university president – Allan Rock – who is a staunch and unconditional supporter of Israel and who had been Canada’s Zionist ambassador to the UN, became immediately motivated to fire me, tenure or not, and irrespective of my popular courses and my large science research funding.

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With the help of an entire team using specially-hired union-busting lawyers, after contriving for years including intensive covert surveillance of me using a hired-student spy to monitor my every spoken and written word and my every activity on campus and at other university campuses, the university finally settled on the false pretext for dismissal of alleging that I had improperly assigned high grades to all 23 students in an advanced physics course. They needed a “clean” pretext that they hoped would be supported by public opinion and that would not bring out all of their dirt. When public opinion and some mainstream media sided with me instead, a high-profile Zionist columnist at the New York Times suddenly wrote not-one but two articles to discredit me, and was invited to Canada to falsely defame me, regarding my teaching, on a trend-setting Canadian TV talk show whose producers are Zionists.

Even after I was fired, as I continued to be publicly critical of the institution, the university funded a large defamation lawsuit against me which, after almost four years, has entirely washed-out my personal savings, and over which I was ordered to pay a total of legal costs and damages in excess of one million dollars, that I can never pay. I am presently struggling to generate the funds to pay the costs of court-transcripts for the appeal that has been filed. My funding campaign is endorsed by the Ontario Civil Liberties Association, which also has a campaign that condemns the university’s unlimited funding of the lawsuit against me using public money.

Although the university had many and mixed unstated and illegitimate reasons for wanting to fire me – such as my defiance and outspokenness in several areas, my popular courses and public events, and my support of student and community activism, I have no doubt that I was fired because the new Zionist university president Allan Rock – former Ambassador to the UN, and former Canadian federal government minister – wanted me out and silenced at any cost, and knew that he could count on support from the Zionist establishment. Under cross-examination, the dean testified that the pre-dismissal lockout of my graduate students and I from our laboratory was directed from above by Allan Rock. This president knew my firing would be seen as a good deed by the powerful Zionist establishment that he is part of. Years before I was ultimately fired, it had already been pronounced in the media that my firing was necessary and was desirable because of the “anti-Semitic” nature of my courses, to the great dismay and protests of many of my students.

After I was escorted off campus in handcuffs by police and charged with “trespassing” while I was still a tenured professor, and since my firing in 2009, Allan Rock has been systematically transforming the University of Ottawa into an institutional instrument at the service of Canada’s accelerating “globalist” agenda, and at the service of legitimizing Israel’s role in that agenda — rather than actually prioritizing the learning environment for students in Ottawa, an environment that is in dire need of an overhaul.

Allan Rock needed me out of the way. The Empire needs critics of the Empire out of the way. And the Israel Lobby needs anyone who threatens the acceptance of Israel’s crimes out of the way.

Q: Why has the criticism of Israel become so costly in the West? Why are the academicians, media personalities and other public figures who dare to question the policies and practices of Israel being immediately vilified and denigrated as anti-Semitist? Moreover, why don’t the mainstream media in the West ever give coverage to the viewpoints critical of Israel or exposing its violations of international law?

A: The mainstream media is a highly perfected arm of the Empire’s propaganda apparatus, as are Hollywood, the music industry, video games, and so on. The barely-maintained illusions of freedom of the press and of artistic freedom only make the propaganda more effective.

The propaganda apparatus is an integral part of the Empire’s military structure. The Israel Lobby is an added structure for direct and forceful control of politicians and intellectuals concerning the role of Israel as the Empire’s main thug in the Middle East.

The Empire’s Israel-based violent control in the Middle East, in turn, gives control over energy and wealth, via both the energy itself and energy transportation routes, and helps to ensure that the US-dollar remains the petro-dollar and, thus, the World currency, which the US prints at will.

In this way, the Empire both maintains its main instrument of global exploitation, namely finance-extortion based on the US-dollar and enforced with military might, and suppresses the development of its main competitors by strategically controlling the energy market via sanctions, pricing, and directed profits. That is the Empire’s working theory, which is realistically achievable thanks to absolute military dominance.

Within this scheme, the Israel Lobby at home is in a symbiotic relation with the Empire. The two are inseparable as long as the Empire’s main geopolitical focus is the Middle East, and as long as the Empire’s main policy in the Middle East is Israel. This is why one finds a strong and visible Israel Lobby satellite in every Western nation that is aligned with the Empire: Canada, France, Australia, and so on.

The two elements that give the Israel Lobby its raison d’etre – namely, the Empire’s main geopolitical focus on the Middle East, and Israel as the Empire’s main policy in the Middle East – are not necessarily good for the Empire. But the Israel Lobby has gotten too powerful; to the point of being able to largely dictate the Empire’s geopolitical priorities, and the Empire’s goals.

Thus, the Israel Lobby has to a large extent overrun the US democracy. It is not presently possible for US politicians to objectively and freely discuss Israel’s role and the Empire’s foreign policy. Virtually no US politician has the backbone to do so. US critics of Israel who are sufficiently threatening are crushed, and the US establishment fully participates in these mobbings.

When the stakes are so high, it is impossible for the Israel Lobby to relax its aggressive stance against all ideological threats. The Lobby considers its intimidation campaigns to be necessary for its own survival. It uses bribery, extortion, and propaganda at every level to discipline all who need to be reminded of which peoples most need to be killed on the planet.

Q: Canada has usually been one of the major advocates and supporters of the Tel Aviv regime since its establishment in 1948, either financially, politically or militarily and has always justified its racist policies in the Occupied Territories publicly. Somewhere in a 2011 article, you noted that Canada does not have much significant trade ties with Israel, and is a net exporter of oil and gas itself. So, why do you think the Canadian politicians continue to offer their “unwavering support” to Israel and rationalize its atrocities against the besieged people of Gaza? Why does Canada always lobby to dissuade world countries from voting against Israel in the UN resolutions? In what ways does Canada benefit from backing Israel?

A: Interestingly, it was Allan Rock – the same man who engineered my firing from the University of Ottawa – who, in 2004, under Paul Martin’s Liberal government and as Canada’s Ambassador to the UN, changed Canada’s longstanding position on Israel from abstaining on human rights resolutions for Palestine to being one of the few countries in the World that vote with the US and Israel against UN human rights resolutions for Palestine.

The complete selling of Canada to the US started prior to Martin, notably at the hands of Conservative Prime Minister Brian “free trade” Mulroney who thereby destroyed the Conservative party for more than a decade. Martin continued the job of selling Canada. Paul Martin engineered a takeover of the Liberal Party of Canada from the last Prime Minister Jean Chrétien who was moderately independent, or wanted to appear to be, and Martin proceeded to wreck that party into oblivion, with the help of other Zionists such as Rock and Harvard-based import Michael Ignatieff who also wrote academic arguments to legitimize torture “in an age of terror”, and others. At present, all three major parties [of] Conservative, NDP, and Liberal are led by ultra-Zionists, which is no accident. Harper, in particular, vehemently demonizes Iran, in what can only be understood as a criminally irresponsible call for a war of aggression, in line with a well-known Israeli desire.

The reason that Canada gives unconditional diplomatic support to Israel is the same as with all states aligned with the Empire. There is no choice on that issue because Israel is a major component of the Empire’s World-domination apparatus. The Israel Lobby is existentially committed to keeping things that way. The widespread tolerance and political adoration of the anti-democratic Israel Lobby in the US suggests that it is now not unreasonable to entertain an analysis of the Empire as a US-Israel Empire, as though the elite-bosses that run the global military-finance exploitation enterprise had effectively merged across US-Israel lines.

The other main Western states vie to align themselves in order to be on the receiving side of the Empire’s global exploitation project. This alignment is the most disgusting and vicious enactment of global racism in human history – largely surpassing its immediate predecessor that was the British Empire – that directly targets indigenous populations in the developing and emerging world, whether or not these populations support resistance movements. In this regard, a color-coded world map of diplomatic stance regarding Israel is identical to a world map of the global exploitation by the states aligned with the Empire.

Canada, in particular, is more than aligned. Canada is truly a vassal state of the US, with virtually complete integration in the political, corporate, security, military, cultural, and intelligentsia spheres. It is not uncommon for high-ranking “Canadian” politicos to have been trained at Harvard. The entertainment and sports enterprises are seamlessly the same, except for Quebec to some degree. This deepening integration has been accompanied by a loss of Canadian nationalism, a dramatically increased Israel Lobby presence, a dumbing down of the provincial education systems, an abandonment of natural-resources ownership, a near-total loss of resistance to foreign corporate ownership, frightening mimicry in the cultural, political, statutory, military, police, etc., fields, and so on.

Years ago, as one personal anecdote, I was shocked to find that the airport security in Ottawa, for an internal flight in Canada, was being managed by a US firm, that the security employees were US citizens, spoke with heavy US accents, and did not speak French – Canada is bilingual, and Ottawa is its capital. I was on stolen Canadian soil being processed by US security personnel. That is now the norm. Canadian citizens have a lot of work to do if they want to effectively oppose US and Israeli crimes against humanity.

Of course the local Canadian establishment needs to benefit from Canada being a vassal state of the Empire. So your question of how does Canada benefit is a fair one. The first answer is that Canada is allowed to share in the plunder practiced by the Empire, to a limited and controlled degree. In addition, Canada is given a share of the Empire’s military economy, in terms of military manufacturing contracts, and is temporarily allowed to have a First World standard of living, even though it must permit its natural resources to be plundered.

Also, Canada is a major producer of oil from tar sands that are relatively expensive to exploit. Wars and imposed sanctions in the Middle East increase the price of oil, which serves the Canadian energy sector well, in terms of political benefits. The price of gas is also increased, which inadvertently serves Russia. Thus, Russia must be sanctioned and cut off from the European market. Enter Ukraine, etc. Energy is geopolitics and Canada, as a major energy producer, “chooses” to be on the side of the big guns.

Q: What do the ordinary Canadian citizens, and the young generation of Canadian people think about Israel and its ongoing campaign of carnage and genocide in the besieged Gaza Strip? Do they sympathize with the major Canadian parties, including the Conservatives, Liberals and the NDP in their unwarranted support for Israel?

A: Political participation in Canada is a farce. By statute – thanks to former Liberal Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau – all local political candidates must be approved and certified by the party leader. Therefore, unlike in the UK where local party members can choose their representatives and where parliamentary rule actually means something, there is no representative democracy whatsoever in Canada. It does not take a PhD in political science to understand this. The employment and career of each Member of Parliament depends on obeying party discipline, and the party bosses are selected and positioned by powerful private interests predominantly represented by the Israel Lobby.

Ordinary Canadians, young and old, understand that politics does not include them. Consequently, political participation is low. The smaller the citizen’s possible influence, the less [they] participate, logically. In Canada – like in most places where citizens do not feel overly threatened by their governments or by foreign influences or by war – effective political allegiance is hired directly using widespread partisan employment, by the government, the public institutions, the private corporations, the hired lobbies, and the non-government organizations. In addition, superficial popular acceptance of fake agendas is bought via disguised propaganda projected by the “educational” system, the media, and the hired “experts” from all sectors. This works brilliantly because most professional workers are fully indoctrinated into the system.

Among aware Canadians, however, there is great concern about Israel’s crimes in Gaza. This concern and resulting outrage are significant, as is evident from the massive media and public-relations counter campaigns to legitimize Israel’s war crimes.

Canadian civil society is recognizing and organizing against the Israel genocide that continues to unfold. There has been a significant backlash against the public positions of the leaders of the three major parties, and this backlash has caused the NDP in particular to do some damage-control. A Member of Parliament even resigned from the NDP over the issue, which is a first in Canada. Furthermore, in reporting the carnage in Gaza, the mainstream media was feeling the pressure to not completely follow the most absurd dictates of the Israel Lobby regarding media strategy.

The recent public demonstrations in support of Gaza, held in every major Canadian city, were massive, by Canadian standards. The pro-Palestine demonstrations that I attended in Ottawa had hundreds and thousands of participants and were among the largest that I have ever witnessed. More importantly, the demonstrators were from across Canadian society and were profoundly moved and committed, more than I have ever seen for any broad Canadian foreign policy matter. Consequently, the mainstream media was forced to report these demonstrations in a somewhat balanced fashion, under the threat of losing credibility.

Thus, there is a significant enough gap, between the extreme Zionism of the political party leaders and public opinion on Gaza, that it is possible that there could be a large and lasting popular backlash that would change the public political discourse and force the Lobby to be less overt. I more than hope that this backlash will be of formidable magnitude and that it will occur at an accelerated pace, in order to create and recover the dignity of Canadians, to bring Canadians into the World, and to bring maximum support to the Palestinian resistance.

Q: During its more than 50 days of incursion into the Gaza Strip, Israel continually bombed the civilian areas, hospitals, mosques and schools. The deliberate targeting of the civilians is a crime under international law. Why is Israel persistent on violating international law while its leaders know what they’re doing is not humane and defendable? Is it because Israel has been enjoying immunity from accountability thanks to the public diplomatic, political and financial support it receives from the United States?

A: It is criminally and morally disgusting that Israel continued to bomb Gaza during the negotiations for the agreement that led to a halt to further Israeli attacks for an “unlimited period”. It is utterly disgusting that Israel murdered the wife and a daughter and a son of the Hamas military commander Mohammed Deif during negotiations. Israel continued to murder Hamas opponents during negotiations. This is abominable. It is difficult to comprehend this degree of disregard by Israel for basic human decency, not to mention international law. This tells us that Israel never negotiated in good faith, and that the “negotiated” agreement cannot possibly represent any measure of interim justice.

The Palestinian resistance in Gaza is awe-inspiring, having killed some 70 invading soldiers that were part of one of the most technologically advanced militaries in the World, and Gazans having sustained unspeakable civilian death, displacement, and destruction. However, Israel is in fact mainly contained by the global political and popular reactions to its crimes. The US cannot afford to convince the World that it is a genocidal-maniac nation, whether it is or not. This would seriously impair the Empire, domestically, with allies, and in its arenas of exploitation.

This is why the Empire funds and supports Israel for the constant bloodletting in the Middle East, and covertly trains and funds proxy thugs wherever it cannot sell a direct intervention, such as in Syria. Make no mistake, the US runs a global empire, with over 1,000 military bases spread in every corner of the globe, but it cannot be perceived in Western circles as an outright purveyor of ruthless and unlimited terror. Just don’t ask Latin Americans what they know from lived experience.

In this regard, a reality that protects the world from US-Israeli ravages is the fact that, more and more, there are Muslim, Latin American, etc., populations in the US and in the aligned countries, such as the Muslim citizens of the UK, and the Latin Americans in the US. This, in turn, explains the growing government fixations on preventing immigration and systemically targeting profiled refugees for deportation. It also explains the police-state occupation and incarceration in the US of the Black and Hispanic less-integrated social classes.

Basically, all the survival, self-defense, and liberation struggles against and from-within the Empire share a common oppressor. These struggles can greatly benefit from Western middle class allies, and from Western middle class indignation. The elite management class has connections to the professional class, which is largely from the middle class, and so on. In this way, “public opinion”, beyond simply most members of the public having some superficial opinion, can pressure towards rejecting the most egregious abuses of the Empire.

Q: In response to Israel’s deadly military operation against the Gaza Strip, the United States simply said that Israel has a right to defend itself, and a right to exist. Are these rights, including a right to exist, contingent upon the destruction of the entire civilian infrastructure in a coastal territory that has been under siege for some 7 years, and the blowing up of its unarmed citizens? Do the US politicians really think this way or are pretending that they’re not aware of the realities of Gaza on the ground?

A: The “right to exist” and “right to defend itself” postures of Israel are ridiculous sophistries that a child can recognize as such. Israelis have a right to not be displaced arbitrarily without a just process. That process must weigh all the facts related to Israel’s long-term genocidal policies and actions of population cleansing and annexing of territory. It must also respect international law, and respect unrescinded UN resolutions. And, it cannot reward continued violations by Israel of the said UN resolutions regarding territorial lines.

The Israeli spin concocted to justify Israel’s gruesome crimes of war is so insulting to the intellect that in itself it could be considered a crime, a crime of language, if it made any sense to have such a category of crimes. Indeed, if it were advisable to condone the development of a criminal law for “hate speech”, then Israel’s spin, uttered in the context of its massacres in Gaza, should certainly qualify as “hate speech”.

As usual, Israel turns everything on its head. The Israel Lobby seeks “hate speech” laws to be enacted in all the aligned states, to prevent criticism of Israel, as being “anti-Semitic” speech of course. This explicitly exists in France, and persists in Canada, where one elderly Canadian citizen was sent to jail in Germany for years for printed publications denying “the” holocaust. Here, the Lobby finds allies in well-meaning middle-class advocates of purified language who wrongly and self-servingly believe that racism can and should be reduced by strict language and social behaviour codes.

If it were serious about discussing rights, Israel would admit the Palestinian rights of return and of self-determination. It would respect the right to life and liberty enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. It would respect the Geneva Conventions on military occupation. It would release all of its Palestinian prisoners. It would stop using its mass-killing machine against civilians, and so on. After that, it would also agree to be judged independently in making substantial reparations to all Palestinians, especially those occupied and the refugees.

Q: The United Nations has just appointed a fact-finding committee to probe into Israel’s possible war crimes during its recent military operation against the Gaza Strip. Do you see the political will and determination in the United Nations to really hold Israel accountable and investigate its criminal conduct in an impartial and fair way?

A: We’ll see. The more interesting question is whether citizens will provide a significant backlash if the commissioners do not properly do what must be done. And, will Israel and the Empire succeed in derailing this UN commission of inquiry into Israel’s war crimes?

Will this commission allow the UN to salvage some credibility? Will the Lobby succeed in its personal attacks against the commission’s chairman? Will anything significant on the ground come from the legalistic exercise?

Nothing significant has come from the UN in the past. This Gaza massacre was as criminal and as evil as the previous one. The only evolution has been the development of the remarkable Gazan military resistance, from killing three invading soldiers in the previous land incursion, to some 70 Israeli soldiers this time. We can only hope that this progression will continue, enough to deter Israel.

Q: What do you think is the reason for Israel’s obduracy in keeping the blockade of Gaza Strip in place and its continued refusal to lift it? Is the siege going to serve certain purposes, such as the demonization of Hamas and turning the residents of Gaza against it?

A: Israel’s program is to eradicate or neutralize all Palestinians who make claim to a home in Palestine. This is exactly what Israel has been doing since before its artificial creation. Israel’s program is planned incremental dispossession and an ongoing attempted genocide. This has been repeatedly and explicitly expressed by the Zionist architects and executioners.

Over 300 Nazi Holocaust survivors and their descendants recently signed an open letter, published as an advertisement in the New York Times, calling what Israel is doing what it is, genocide. Israel’s attempted genocide of Palestinians is also expressly cheered-on by many Israeli citizens and by members of the Zionist diaspora of all religions.

Therefore, the Israeli apartheid is not meant as a sustained apartheid. It is an increment in the attempted genocide that accompanies the racist pillaging of land and resources. The massacres in Gaza and the collective punishments against Gazans can be understood only in this context.

As such, Israel will continue the gruesome intimidations of all sorts, which are Israel’s history, and which are intended to cause Palestinians to flee from Palestine. Israel wants Gaza. And, Israel wants all Palestinians out of the greater Israel that it is creating.

The US accepts Israel’s crimes against Palestinians because the US “accepts” Israel’s conviction that this is necessary for Israel’s “security”. The US acceptance of the Zionist genocide is part of the negotiated understanding between the Empire and Israel. The US propaganda about seeking restraint is purely deflection and risk management for the Empire.

Furthermore, Israel knows that a real impediment to its greater design, its final solution, is Palestinian armed resistance, presently limited to Gaza. Israel, therefore, has an illegitimate military objective to strangle the armed resistance and to murder its leaders and closest enablers, and the Zionists willfully disregard international law to pursue this aim. It is a classic dirty war of extermination of popular armed resistance. If Israel cannot kill the armed resistance, then it plans to expel and kill the population that supports the resistance. In any case, it wants Gaza.

Within this criminal mentality, there is no way that Israel will voluntarily relax the blockade. The fight to dissolve the blockade, and even just to have Israel respect the general language of the ceasefire agreement to ease restrictions at the Gaza border crossings, will be continuous and arduous.

This is what Israel does. It strangles Palestinians. Only real pressures can slow Israel and, one day soon, turn it around. Things can happen. Populations can enforce democratic rule. Leaders can side with popular movements. Anything is possible when resisters everywhere become committed and determined. It happened in the recent past with liberation struggles everywhere when the British Empire was forced to retract, and with civil rights and democratized institutions in the 1960s. It’s happening in Latin America now. It’s happening on the streets. It can happen again and everywhere.

This interview was originally published on Fars News Agency.

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Glaring Western hypocrisy on the notion of human rights by Kourosh Ziabari – Press TV

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Glaring Western hypocrisy on the notion of human rights by Kourosh Ziabari – Press TV

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Kourosh Ziabari – Press TV: Now that Iran is reconstructing its international relations through a dynamic nuclear diplomacy and gaining reputation as an emerging regional superpower, the United States and its allies, infuriated and frantic, consider it as worthwhile to test Iran’s patience by using the notion of human rights as a leverage for pressuring and annoying the Islamic Republic.

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On Wednesday, December 18, the UN General Assembly adopted a resolution proposed by the Canadian government to condemn the alleged violations of human rights in Iran. 83 countries votes in favor, 36 against and 62 others abstained.

The adoption of the anti-Iran resolution, despite failing to get the vote of the majority of the 193 UN member states, comes on the heels of the sensitive and highly significant negotiations between Iran and the six world powers over Iran’s nuclear program, especially after Iran and the Sextet ratified the Joint Plan of Action on November 24, 2013 which stipulated limitations on certain portions of Iran’s nuclear program in return for relief from some of the sanctions imposed against Iran in the recent years.

Such a resolution which seems completely irrelevant and unbecoming amidst the important expert-level talks between the representatives of Iran and the five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany to find a practical basis for implementing the Geneva accord, is undeniably counterproductive and unconstructive and will simply serve to increase the Iranians’ feeling of mistrust in the United States and the other Western states who voted in favor of the resolution.

All the European members of the UN General Assembly voted in favor of the resolution while some of them are themselves accused of violating the essential rights of their citizens. Aside from being detrimental to the spirit of Iran-West rapprochement which the new Iranian administration under President Hassan Rouhani sees itself committed to, the resolution clearly underlines the hypocritical and duplicitous approach of some of these countries to the notion of human rights.

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It seems as some Western powers are utilizing the idea of human rights as a pretext for furthering their agenda of isolating such independent countries as Iran. It’s interesting that they don’t present any confirmable evidence to substantiate their claims, and instead resort to general statements, condemning in their own way what they say is the violation of the rights of Iranian people.

They blatantly close their eyes on the grave violations of the rights of religious and ethnic minorities as well as women in the countries with whom they are allied, such as Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Yemen and Egypt, portraying everything in an upside-down manner, making the credulous people believe that it’s really Iran that violates the rights of its people.

But why is it so? The answer sounds simple. Confirming a country’s commitment to such values as human rights is a matter of alliance with the bullying powers who call themselves the sole defenders and pioneers of human rights. If you are an ally and a friend, they will commend you, and if you’re an adversary, they pull out all the stops to crush you.

The Canadian government that circulated the draft resolution against Iran is said to be one of the major violators and abusers of human rights in the Western world. [Emphasis mine. Ed.] In a December 2012 report, Amnesty International noted that committees on racial discrimination, prevention of torture and children’s rights found “a range” of “ongoing and serious human rights challenges,” especially for indigenous peoples in Canada.

“By every measure, be it respect for treaty and land rights, levels of poverty, average life spans, violence against women and girls, dramatically disproportionate levels of arrest and incarceration or access to government services such as housing, health care, education, water and child protection, indigenous peoples across Canada continue to face a grave human rights crisis,” it said.

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It’s been long objected by the people across the world who intend to travel to Canada for various purposes that the Canadian embassies in different countries treat the visa applicants in a derogatory, insulting and humiliating manner. Even in Iran, where Canada maintained an embassy which was unilaterally closed by the Ottawa government on September 7, 2012, the Iranian applicants of Canadian visa continuously complained of the rude behavior of the embassy staff and that the embassy prolonged the issuance of visas due to political reasons, leading to serious problems for those who wanted to travel to Canada on specific dates.

Canada also violates the rights of the aboriginal communities and the women in a very appalling and dreadful way.

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According to a report published by the Native Women’s Association of Canada in 2002, “aboriginal women continue to face violence in their lives every day… According to various statistics, Aboriginal women in Canada experience consistently higher rates of reported intimate violence than the overall female population. At least one in three is abused by a partner compared to one in ten women overall and there are some estimates of as high as nine in ten. Four out of five Aboriginal women have witnessed or experienced intimate violence in childhood.”

“A survey by Correctional Services of Canada pointed out that abuse played a more widespread part in the lives of Aboriginal women compared to non-native women. It indicated that 90% of Aboriginal and 61% of non-Aboriginal women had been physically abused, whereas 61% of Aboriginal and 50% of non-Aboriginal women had been sexually abused” in a given time, the report added.

The aboriginal Canadians have also face other types of discrimination and injustice in the recent decades, but there has been no UN General Assembly resolution to defend their rights and condemn the atrocities being committed against them.

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 The same goes with the U.S. allies in the Middle East which are surely the biggest human rights abusers in the world, but get away with their crimes and felonies thanks to their “passionate attachment” to Uncle Sam.

In Saudi Arabia, where the women are not allowed to drive cars, and constitute only 5% of the workforce, human rights are being trampled underfoot in the daylight, but no voice is raised in protest from the side of the world powers and international organizations. In Saudi Arabia, women and men are not allowed to work with each other in public offices. Even prior to 2008, the women were not allowed to enter hotels or furnished apartments without the permission of a male chaperon. Currently, every woman who wants to reside in a hotel for a few days should inform the nearest police station of her room reservation and the length of her stay.

Saudi Arabia is a Muslim country and a founding member of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, but even the Shiite Saudis who comprise around 10% to 15% of the population are deprived of their basic rights, including practicing their religious and denominational tenets in public, reciting the prayers exclusive to the Shiites and visiting the shrines of their demised relatives.

In December 2012, the Saudi forces raided a house in the province of al-Jouf and detained 41 people for “plotting to celebrate Christmas.”

The state of civil liberties, political freedoms and the freedom of press is immensely deplorable and declining in Saudi Arabia. The minutest criticism of the House of Saud and the government can lead to the detention and even execution of a journalist or blogger, as it has been the case with the Saudi novelist and political author Turki al-Hamad and blogger Fouad al-Farhan.

These kinds of injustice and discrimination are being committed in a country which is the closest U.S. ally in the Middle East and one of its major trade partners in the whole Asian continent.

The situation in Bahrain or Yemen is not any much better. Bahraini activists and human rights advocates have reported hundreds of cases of extrajudicial killing, illegal detention and abuse of the critics of the Al-Khalifa regime, especially following the February 2011 uprising in the tiny Persian Gulf kingdom.

The violation of human rights in these Arab countries with which the United States and other Western governments have strategic alliances can be effortlessly neglected and ignored. It clearly indicates a flagrant duplicity on the notion of human rights.

Iran is making progress on its human rights record, but there’s nobody to confirm and attest to it. Of course what has propelled Canada, the United States and their European partners to adopt a resolution in condemnation of the so-called human rights violations in Iran, as they did in 2011 and 2012, is not that they really care for the rights of the Iranian people. It’s simply a matter of demonization and propaganda to vilify Iran and undermine its international stature and the fact that the public around the world are coming to a new understanding of Iran as a pacifist and beneficial member of the international community that is ready to allay the concerns of the world countries over its nuclear activities.

This article was originally published by Press TV.

U.N. General Assembly votes to recognize Palestinian state!!!

http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-202_162-57556296/u.n-general-assembly-votes-to-recognize-palestinian-state/

CBS/AP/ November 29, 2012, 5:23 PM
U.N. General Assembly votes to recognize Palestinian state

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UNITED NATIONS The United Nations voted overwhelmingly Thursday to recognize a Palestinian state, a long-sought victory for the Palestinians but an embarrassing diplomatic defeat for the United States.

The resolution upgrading the Palestinians’ status to a nonmember observer state at the United Nations was approved by a more than two-thirds majority of the 193-member world body — a vote of 138-9, with 41 abstentions. The Vatican is the only other entity in the U.N. that shares the same status.

A Palestinian flag was quickly unfurled on the floor of the General Assembly, behind the Palestinian delegation.

Real independence, however, remains an elusive dream until the Palestinians negotiate a peace deal with the Israelis, who warned that the General Assembly action will only delay a lasting solution. Israel still controls the West Bank, east Jerusalem and access to Gaza, and it accused the Palestinians of bypassing negotiations with the campaign to upgrade their U.N. status.

The United States immediately criticized the historic vote. “Today’s unfortunate and counterproductive resolution places further obstacles in the path peace,” U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice said. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton called the vote “unfortunate” and “counterproductive.”

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called the speech by Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to the General Assembly shortly before the vote “defamatory and venomous,” saying it was “full of mendacious propaganda” against Israel.

Abbas had told the General Assembly that it was “being asked today to issue the birth certificate of Palestine,” saying the vote is the last chance to save the two-state solution.

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“The window of opportunity is narrowing and time is quickly running out. The rope of patience is shortening and hope is withering. The innocent lives that have been taken by Israeli bombs … are a painful reminder to the world that this racist, colonial occupation is making the two-State solution and the prospect for realizing peace a very difficult choice, if not impossible,” Abbas said ahead of the vote. He got a huge round of applause as he left the podium.

Israel’s U.N. ambassador, Ron Prosor, warned the General Assembly that “the Palestinians are turning their backs on peace” and that the U.N. can’t break the 4,000-year-old bond between the people of Israel and the land of Israel.

“For as long as President Abbas prefers symbolism over reality, as long as he prefers to travel to New York for U.N. resolutions, rather than travel to Jerusalem for genuine dialogue, any hope of peace will be out of reach,” Prosor said.

After the vote, Netanyahu said the U.N. move violated past agreements between Israel and the Palestinians and that Israel would act accordingly, without elaborating what steps it might take.

CBS News foreign affairs analyst Pamela Falk explains that many diplomats believe the Palestinian bid for non-member state status, despite U.S. and Israeli objections, could restart peace talks for several reasons: “The support for the bid of former Israeli prime minister Ehud Olmert; because there is agreement between the leadership of the West Bank and Gaza on the vote; and because the recent fighting has raised the stakes,” she said.

But Israeli and the U.S. officials say that the vote is not at all productive toward peace talks. Netanyahu said the Palestinians will not win a state until they recognize Israel as the Jewish homeland, declare an end to their conflict with the Jewish state and agree to security arrangements that protect Israel.

The vote had been certain to succeed, with most of the member states sympathetic to the Palestinians. Several key countries, including France, this week announced they would support the move to elevate the Palestinians from the status of U.N. observer to nonmember observer state.

Thursday’s vote came on the same day, Nov. 29, that the U.N. General Assembly in 1947 voted to recognize a state in Palestine, with the jubilant revelers then Jews. The Palestinians rejected that partition plan, and decades of tension and violence have followed.

The vote grants Abbas an overwhelming international endorsement for his key position: establishment of a Palestinian state in the West Bank, Gaza Strip and east Jerusalem, the territories captured by Israel in the 1967 Mideast war. With Netanyahu opposed to a pullback to the 1967 lines, this should strengthen Abbas’ hand if peace talks resume.

The overwhelming vote also could help Abbas restore some of his standing, which has been eroded by years of standstill in peace efforts. His rival, Hamas, deeply entrenched in Gaza, has seen its popularity rise after an Israeli offensive on targets linked to the Islamic militant group there earlier this month.

Israel has stepped back from initial threats of harsh retaliation for the Palestinians seeking U.N. recognition, but government officials warned that Israel would respond to any Palestinian attempts to use the upgraded status to confront Israel in international bodies.

The Palestinians now can gain access to U.N. agencies and international bodies, most significantly the International Criminal Court, which could become a springboard for going after Israel for alleged war crimes or its ongoing settlement building on war-won land.

However, in the run-up to the U.N. vote, Abbas signaled that he wants recognition to give him leverage in future talks with Israel, and not as a tool for confronting or delegitimizing Israel, as Israeli leaders have alleged.

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© 2012 CBS Interactive Inc.