Saturday, January 30, 2010

Gazans Cheer On Egyptians; Egypt Locks Up Gazans

Friday night Egypt beat Algeria 4:0.

Walking past Talat Harb square in downtown Cairo I saw a circle of policemen standing idly by as the masses took over the streets.

In Le Comte bar later that night, Waheed the bartender tells me, all is well in Egypt.. never mind the excessive economic gap between rich and poor, never mind that the only time the Egyptian public can let out any emotions is over football, any other form outcry or uprising results in police brutality and torture.

Meanwhile in Gaza, despite the Egyptian regime further caging in its neighbors and selling subsidized natural gas to the Zionist occupation, Gazans cheer on their neighbors.

This from a friend in Gaza City..

enjoyed watching the football game between Algeria vs Egypt ,GAZANs WAY: that's mean all gaza were watching the game -suppurating the Egyptian team- using generators bcz they DON'T HAVE ELECTRICITY,but the funny thing the generator-at the coffee shop where i was watching-was over from the fuel 3 minutes before the end o...f the game:(yes its sad,but despite that gazans went in the dark celebrating the Egyptian victory!

Shame on the criminal Egyptian regime.

Israeli Female Soldiers..

Breaking the Silence.

Read more

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Joseph Massad: Oslo: Imploding the Palestinian State

Despite its surface appearance as a political compromise, this formula [Oslo] is in fact a reflection of the racial views characterizing (European Jewish) Israelis and Palestinian and other Arabs.
A resumption of steady funding continued after Arafat's death conditional upon Mahmoud Abbas's "seriousness" in pointing Palestinian guns at the Palestinians themselves, which he and the PA's thuggish security apparatuses have done. However, they have not been as effective as the US and Israel had wished, which is why US General Keith Dayton is assuming full control of the military situation on the ground in order to "assist" the Palestinians to deliver their peace part of the bargain to Israel.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Egypt's Police Day

Last night I asked a policeman on my street why he was working, wasn't it national police day?

"This is not a celebration for us, its for the people at the top," he said.

There are two versions to the story, you choose which to believe:

You can either celebrate with torture or with candy.

You pick your illusions.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Ramzy Baroud: My Father Was a Freedom Fighter

Friend and author Ramzy Baroud on the untold story of Gaza...

"Ramzy Baroud has written a deeply moving chronicle of the persisting Palestinian ordeal that manages to interweave and bring to life the heart-wrenching experience of his family, particularly the heroics of his father, with the daily cruelties of the prolonged Israeli occupation of Gaza, the frequent horrors of refugee existence, and the disillusioning futility of seeking an end to a bloody conflict that goes on and on. This book more than any I have read tells me why anyone of conscience must stand in solidarity with the continuing struggle of the Palestinian people for self-determination and a just peace."
-- Richard Falk, Albert G. Milbank Professor of International Law Emeritus, Princeton University, and Special Rapporteur for Occupied Palestinian Territories, UN Human Rights Council

"Ramzy Baroud provides a riveting account of his father's life and a compelling narrative of his people's history. It is the story of Exodus, but told from the view of the Palestinians on shore as the ship arrived. A narrative we have listened to time and again over sweet tea in Gaza, it is available now to those who cannot travel to Palestine. This book should be read by all who struggle to understand the Middle East and to find passage to a just peace in the region."
-- Cindy and Craig Corrie, The Rachel Corrie Foundation

My Father Was A Freedom Fighter: Gaza’s Untold Story is the latest book by Palestinian-American journalist, author, and former Al-Jazeera producer Ramzy Baroud. Baroud is Editor-in-Chief of the Palestine Chronicle, and his work has been published in hundreds of newspapers and journals worldwide. His 2002 book, Searching Jenin: Eyewitness Accounts of the Israeli Invasion has received international recognition. His 2006 book, The Second Palestinian Intifada: A Chronicle of a People’s Struggle (Pluto Press, London) has won the praise of many scholars worldwide.

But it from Pluto or Amazon

Beirut: Protest Against Egypt's Wall of Shame

A woman holds her shoe to the Egyptian embassy. A poster in the background reads: 'The high one built the high dam, the low one built the low dam.' It refers to former Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser building the Aswan Dam and current Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak building the underground wall in the Sinai to stop the tunnel trade with Gaza. (image: matthew cassel)

Jamiel Jam writes on a 500 strong protest in Beirut Saturday against Mubarak's Wall of Shame:

After an hour of loud, energetic anti Mubarak chanting the Lebanese army had heard enough. The response was pre-meditated and brutal. The steel fence separating the hostile soldiers from the protests was drawn away and the batons began to be swung everywhere. There was no consideration to age or gender whilst the soldiers pierced the crowd by smashing anybody in their way.

The crowd retreated 20 meters but were not going to give up on their protest. In fact the casualties only gave more reason to continue. Amoungst the injured I saw one woman had one side of her head saturated with blood, blood which had seeped through her hair. Unable to walk and in a state of shock she was rushed away from the emotionless thugs.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Israel Determining Gaza's "Minimum" Level of Nutritional Subsistence?

On October 28 2009 Israeli Human Rights organization Gisha filed a case at an Israeli District Court calling for Israel to explain its policy on its siege on Gaza.

Gisha required an answer for the sporadic way that Israel runs the siege on Gaza. They demanded what criteria exist for the definition of "humanitarian" goods and how the list is determined on what is and is not permitted into Gaza.

In court again on January 21 the presiding judge was not pleased with the Israeli state spokesman's response who had claimed that a document on "red lines" that defines "minimum" nutritional subsistence levels for Gazans did not exist.

Guy Inbar, the spokesman of the Israeli Coordinator of Activities in the Territories wrote, "the office of the Coordinator of Activities examines the requirements of the Gaza population all the time"- like a prison warden.

The judge gave the occupying state 30 days to provide an explanation on how they are "putting Palestinians on a diet."

Friday, January 22, 2010

Light to Shine out of Darkness

US-made rifles inscribed with Bible codes are being used by US forces and Afghans to fight the Taliban.
"They've always tried to paint the US efforts in Afghanistan as a Christian campaign."
The Trijicon Reflex sight is stamped with 2COR4:6, a reference to part of the second letter of Paul to the Corinthians: "For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ," the King James version reads.

Tom Munson, Trijicon's sales director, said: "We don't publicise this. It's not something we make a big deal out of."

Thursday, January 21, 2010


One more case of example of the Israeli propaganda machine at work.

Expelling Jared, who for years has been doing good work as a journalist for the Bethlehem-based Ma'an News Agency.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Israel Plays God: Floods Gaza Strip

The Gaza Valley (Wadi Ghaza) used to host a river with lush banks from Hebron to the Mediterranean. For the past many years it has been transferred into a trickle of sewage after Israeli authorities built a dam and cut the water flow.

Yesterday, the Israelis decided to open the dam, causing the banks of the trickling river to flood the homes of Gaza residents.

The BBC, silencing the perpetrator, turned the incident into an act of nature.

"On Monday seven people were killed in the region when heavy rains caused the worst flash floods seen in a decade."

Human Rights Group Al-Mezan described it differently,

"For the second time in less than ten years the Israeli occupation forces have flooded Palestinian homes, fields and possessions of tens of families in the Gaza Strip."

No deaths means the English-speaking media is uninterested.

This is another case of the Gaza Strip's state of exception. One day Israel has use of water, so damn the Palestinians fields. Two days ago the Israelis had too much water, so damn the Palestinian homes.

A few words on the State of Exception..

Political Theorists Carl Schmitt’s conceptualization of the state of exception mirrors theologian Soren Kierkegaard’s formulation of the suspension of the ethical, whereby any ethical standardization is suspended during an incident of ‘divine intervention’ as that faced by Abraham’s intention of sacrificing his son. It is such logic of exception that Israel utilizes in the ongoing siege on Gaza- breaking all standards of international law- and in the flooding of a few homes in the Gaza valley.

The Palestinians are on the recipient end of this tableau of ethical suspension and in full approval of an on-looking international community, which applies its own “divine” exceptions when deemed fit.

Its fun to play god.

Monday, January 18, 2010

War-Comic-Journalism: Joe Sacco

"[W]hen I was in high school what I saw on TV news and what I read in the newspapers gave me the impression that Palestinians were terrorists.

And later on I began to understand why. Every time the word 'Palestinian' came up on the news it was in relationship to a bombing or a hijacking or something else like that. And that is objective journalism: just reporting what's going on. 'This is a fact' and leave it there. What it meant was that I had no education from the American mainstream media about what was going on there.

I knew nothing about the Palestinians. I didn't know why they were fighting at all or what they were striving for."

Interview: Elia Suleiman

Monday, January 11, 2010

Ramez... of the Multitude

Last night, during a visit to the Nile delta, I met Ramez. As soon as he saw me- overcome with joy- he threw his arms around me. I was not quite sure why.

This picture explains it a bit.

Many months ago- though he had never met me- Ramez protested for my release. He is a student of law. Ramez has a speech and hearing impairment, so he struggles with his studies. 

This is the multitude, that still brings a ray of hope. 

My Friend Fares... One Year On

In January 2009 Fares Akram's diary described the ordeal of life in Gaza during the Israeli military assault. A year on, he describes how he still mourns his lost father, but keeps going for the sake of a baby born in war.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

This State of Exception

According to a UN official Israel will be paying the UN "around $10.5 million" in compensation for the "damage"- caused during Israel's war last winter against Gaza:

1. of U.N. property (two U.N. schools and a World Food Program warehouse in Gaza City- nevermind the over 40 refugees sheltering there after being told to do so by leaflets dropped by Israeli fighter jets in order to "safety")

2. for the life of the driver of a U.N. truck 

nevermind the over 1,300 other lives

nevermind the over 20,000 injured

nevermind the over 22,000 buildings destroyed, 

nevermind the ongoing destruction lived by people like you and me in the Gaza Strip today,

and I wonder, how does the people behind this entity called Israel get away with it.

Down With the Wall

Philip Rizk, a blogger and filmmaker, was kidnapped and detained by security forces last February after he organized a march from Cairo to Gaza with local and international activists. “Throughout the interrogation, my biggest crime seemed to be one simple thing: I cared too much for Palestinians and was willing to turn this solidarity into action.”