CPGB-ML » Posts for tag 'Israel'

Unity government finally emerges in Palestine

From the International Report delivered to the CPGB-ML’s central committee on 4 March.

It has been announced that Fatah and Hamas are to form a unity government, paving the way for both to participate in parliamentary and presidential elections due shortly in the Palestine Authority, and perhaps to the reunification of the West Bank and Gaza.

Negotiations to this end have been going on since last May and success has finally been achieved, with Hamas ceding the position of president to Abbas, and having to renounce violence, recognise Israel, and recognise all existing agreements between the Palestinian Authority and Israel. Qatar, which generally promotes western imperialist interests, has been actively brokering the arrangement, but it may nevertheless not be acceptable to Israel and the US.

Although Hamas has made what in many people’s eyes would be excessive concessions in the interests of Palestinian unity, Israel has announced that it is not prepared to talk about peace if Hamas (a ‘terrorist organisation’) is involved, and the US is threatening to cut off aid to the Palestinian Authority (it has already shut off its contributions to Unesco because that organisation recognised the Palestinian state).

Israel keeps up pressure for war against Iran

From the International Report delivered to the CPGB-ML’s central committee on 4 March.

Israel is stepping up its threats to bomb Iran’s nuclear facilities, which, it says, are now being buried deep underground, which will make them invulnerable unless measures are taken very soon to put them out of action. There has been speculation in the media on the question of whether Israel will therefore mount bombing raids on Iran.

In actual fact, Israel would not be able to do the job without support and assistance from the US, and the US is hesitant to involve itself in this action because of the considerable harm that Iran is in a position to do to its interests.

An article on this question appears in the latest issue of Lalkar.

In the meantime, parliamentary elections took place on Friday 2 March, with Iranians being urged to vote in order to shown the western powers that they “cannot resist the will” of the Iranian nation. Western imperialism, on the other hand, is looking at the election for any signs of demoralisation among the Iranian population (brought about by sanctions) that they might be able to exploit.

A thousand Palestinian prisoners freed

From the International Report delivered to the CPGB-ML’s central committee on 5 November

Sergeant Gilad Shalit, the Israeli soldier held by Hamas since June 2006, has been released in exchange for over 1,000 Palestinian prisoners held in Israel, including all Palestinian women prisoners except eight.

The 6,000 Palestinian prisoners who remain incarcerated in Israeli jails (including important leaders such as Marwan Barghouti) have mostly been convicted on unreliable evidence, or simply for their political affiliations, while hundreds of others have never been charged. Some 200 of the freed prisoners will not be allowed back into the West Bank but will either be sent to Gaza or into exile.

What may have brought about the deal is the need for the Israeli government to do something to please the Israeli people, who have become very disaffected as a result of rising prices. They have indeed been pleased by the return of Sergeant Shalit, an event aimed at showing that the Israeli government takes care of its own – very important in a country that relies on conscription to maintain its armed forces at the necessary level.

A similar deal has been done between Israel and Egypt. Israel is to release dozens of Egyptians imprisoned by the Israelis in return for an American law student (who has Israeli nationality) who has been charged with spying for Israel.

Anti-Israel sentiments at an all-time high in Egypt

From the International Report delivered to the CPGB-ML’s central committee on 1 October

In Cairo, tens of thousands of demonstrators were involved in tearing down a concrete wall that had only just been built around the Israeli embassy. The wall was meant to protect the embassy from the fury of continuing demonstrations that have been taking place outside it since the killing of Egyptian military personnel in Sinai last month.

Not only did the protesters tear down the concrete wall, they also scaled the walls of the building to tear down the Israeli flag, broke into offices and tossed documents into the streets. The Egyptian army did intervene to remove protesters from the building, but they were not arrested.

On 10 September, however, in the early hours of the morning, there was a full-scale confrontation between protesters and the police, who were trying to disperse the demonstrators by the use of tear gas and rubber bullets.

Subsequently, Egypt’s ruling military council, made up entirely of Mubarak-appointed military personnel, has reimposed emergency laws curtailing freedom of the press, and have closed a TV station connected to Al Jazeera on the grounds that it had no licence.

Developments in Palestine

From the International Report delivered to the CPGB-ML’s central committee on 1 October

The United Nations published a report on 2 September (the Palmer Report) finding that Israel’s naval blockade of Gaza is legal and that the Israeli commandoes who boarded the Mavi Marmara had a perfect right to defend themselves against the “organised and violent resistance” which it claimed a group of passengers had put up.

It is not clear how the universally unarmed passengers, shot from the air before the commandos had even landed, had been able to put up organised and violent resistance, and this was not explained. The report did, however, admit that the force used by the Israelis was “excessive and unreasonable”. Nevertheless the report put blame on the flotilla for “recklessly” running the blockade, and on Turkey for not persuading them to keep away.

The finding that the blockade of Gaza by Israel was a legitimate security measure designed merely to prevent armaments being supplied to Palestinians, rather than a deliberate collective punishment of the people of Gaza that is contrary to the Geneva conventions, is also outrageous. There are plenty of ways Israel could monitor the cargoes of ships headed for Gaza without actually blockading the Strip and preventing any ship from entering or leaving, even those carrying only humanitarian aid.

This hugely biased report has of course infuriated Turkey, which has expelled the Israeli ambassador and announced that it is freezing military ties with Israel until Israel both apologises and compensates the victims. Obviously, there is no chance of that happening any time soon! Furthermore, Turkey has announced that it will be providing future aid convoys to Gaza with naval escorts to guarantee their safety.

The bias in the report is readily understood by observing a number of factors. Three of the four members of the Palmer enquiry team were appointed only on Israel approving them. They included that arch violator of human rights Alvaro Uribe, former president of Colombia.

Moreover, the team heard no evidence at all from the survivors of the attack. It took for granted that the Mavi Marmara carried weapons when in fact it was well established that it did not. As to suggesting that the boarding of the Mava Marmara was legal because of the threat it posed to Israel, this argument would have been completely inappropriate even if it had been true, since even then it would not have been legal under international law to board a ship in international waters, as happened in this case.

In truth, the Palmer Report makes a mockery of justice – and of the United Nations as a credible international organisation.

Meanwhile, the Palestinian bid to be recognised as a state by the UN has caused major upheavals. Israel has been backed 100 percent by Barack Obama in its opposition to such recognition, which cannot have failed to open the eyes of those who had pinned all their hopes of justice for the Palestinian people on his sense of fair play.

Threats and bribes were proffered to try to persuade Abbas to withdraw the bid, but his hands were tied by the fact that his followers, against a background of mushrooming jewish settlements all over the West Bank at the cost of Palestinian homes and livelihoods, would simply not allow him to abandon, compromise or postpone this basic demand and entitlement of the Palestinian people.

It is clear that the US can and almost certainly will exercise its veto in the UN Security Council to prevent full recognition of Palestinian as a state within the pre-1967 boundaries. What they will have much more difficulty with is preventing the Palestinian Authority from having its status elevated by the General Assembly of the UN from non-voting ‘observer entity’ to ‘observer state’, a status equal to that of the Vatican.

This status would give the Palestinians not only the right to observe but also to submit resolutions and join other United Nations bodies and conventions. It would also give them status to pursue legal cases in the International Criminal Court, something that alarms Israel and the United States in particular.

For the moment, the issue has been postponed insofar as it is tabled to be discussed by the Security Council some time next spring. Only after the Security Council reaches its decision will the General Assembly have the chance to cast its votes. Between now and then one can expect heavy US pressure on various UN members – pressure that has already commenced – to vote as directed by the US or else face various highly pernicious and damaging unilateral sanctions.

For the moment, even France has broken ranks with its co-imperialists to express support for recognition by the General Assembly of the Palestinian state, as has Russia.

Finally, the High Court in the UK has ruled that British government’s detention of Sheikh Raed Salah was illegal and that he is entitled to damages in respect of this illegal detention.

Evidence before the court showed that the detention was prompted by pressure put by the notorious lobbyist for zionism, the so-called ‘Community Security Trust’. This outfit made all kinds of unfounded allegations against Sheikh Salah, which the Home Secretary took just 17 minutes to investigate. The zionists’ aim, in which they were successful, was to prevent Sheikh Salah attending and speaking at a meeting scheduled to be held in the House of Commons.

Sheikh Salah’s appeal against the deportation order that was made against him is still pending.

Libya : oil, banks, the United Nations and America’s holy crusade

By Felicity Arbuthnot, via Global Research

5 April 2011

“America is not - and never will be - at war with Islam.” (President Barack Hussein Obama, Al-Azar University, Cairo, 4 June 2009)

George W Bush embarked on the casual snuffing out of uncounted, unique, human lives in majority muslim populations, chillingly called it a “crusade”. President Barack Hussein Nobel Obama did not go that far, he left that to the French Minister of the Interior, Claude Gueant who, on 21 March, praised President Nicholas Sarkozy for having: “headed the crusade”.

For the “change we can believe in” president, reducing another ancient land of eye-watering archeological gems, massive oil and water resources and a population of six million - little more than Scotland - it is, reportedly, a “turd sandwich”.

Humanity is not “at the crossroads”. It is on the Cross, scourged, nailed (in all senses) and utterly inconsequential, in face of murdering, marauding, looting Empire.

When President Obama “updated the American people on the international effort we have led in Libya” on 29 March, he stated that: “we are naturally reluctant to use force to solve the world’s many challenges” and referred to “our interests” being “at stake”. Reluctance would be a first. America’s bombing for “interests” would be an encylopaedia.

Colonel Gaddafi, had, of course, stated the president: “denied his people freedom, exploited their wealth, murdered opponents at home and abroad, and terrorised innocent people around the world”. Busy man. Heaven forbid ‘Nato’s’ blitzkrieg should send the occasional shiver down a spine.

However, interestingly, at the end of March, a report was due to be presented by the UN Human Rights Council leading to a resolution commending Libya’s progress in a wide aspect of human rights. Numerous quotes from UN diplomatic delegations of many countries commented. Citations included: “achieving a high school enrolment rate and improvements in the education of women“, Libya’s: “serious commitment to, and interaction with, the Human Rights Council … enhanced development of human rights … while respecting cultural and religious traditions“.

Also mentioned was: “ … establishment of the national independent institution entrusted with promoting human rights, which had many of the competencies set out in the Paris Principles“. The country had: “become party to many human rights conventions and had equipped itself with a number of institutions, national, governmental and non governmental tasked with promoting human rights …

The country was commended: “for the progress made in the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals, namely universal primary education [and] firm commitment [to] health care“. There was praise for “cooperation with international organisations in combating human trafficking and corruption” and for cooperation with the International Organization for Migration.

Progress in enjoyment of economic and social rights, including in the areas of education, health care, poverty reduction and social welfare” with “measures taken to promote transparency“, were also cited. Malaysia “Commended the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya for being party to a significant number of international and regional human rights instruments.” Promotion “of the rights of persons with disabilities” and praise for “measures taken with regard to low income families” were cited.

In May 2010, Libya had also been voted on to the UN Human Rights Council by a veritable landslide, 155 of 192 UN General Assembly votes. As noted previously (i), Libya comes top in Africa on the Human Development Index, which measures longevity (the longest) infant mortality (the lowest) education, health services, well being. (ii)

All that said, before this publication is flooded with complaints about the writer’s naivety, ‘propagandist flights of fancy’ (an orchestrated old favourite) or whatever, some of the countries making positive recommendations regarding Libya did not have the most shining human rights records. But then the US, UK and Nato member countries pontificate from the high moral molehills of the mass graves of the Balkans, Afghanistan and Iraq, overtly, and Yemen, Somalia and other countries, covertly. And of course there are Guantanamo, Bagram, Abu Ghraib, rendition flights and secret torture programmes and prisons across the globe for US/UK convenience. (iii)

Further, in a train wreck of factual inaccuracies in President Obama’s speech, a (possibly) Freudian slip crept in. “Benghazi”, he said, was “a city nearly the size of Charlotte” in danger of suffering “a massacre (staining) the conscience of the world”.

A quick check shows that Charlotte, North Carolina “has a major base of energy orientated organisations and has become known as ‘Charlotte, USA - The New Energy Capital’. In the region there are 240+ companies directly tied to the energy sector … Major players are AREVA, Babcock and Wilcox, Duke Energy, Electric Power Research Institute, Fluor, Metso Power, Piedemont Natural Gas, Siemens Energy, Shaw Group, Toshiba, URS Corp and Westinghouse.The University of North Carolina at Charlotte has a reputation in energy education and research and its ‘Energy Production and Infrastructure Center’ trains energy engineers and conducts research.” (Wikipedia)

Whilst many respected oil experts have argued that since so many western energy companies operate in Libya, this is not about oil, there are some points worth pondering. All companies operating in Libya must have Libyan partners, entitled to 35 percent of profits. (iv) Trading is via the Libyan Central Bank, in the Libyan Dinar, not US$. The Libyan Central Bank is also independently outside the IMF and the World Bank.

There are only five nations without a Rothschild model central bank: North Korea, Iran, Sudan, Cuba and Libya.

There were two others: Afghanistan and Iraq, but they were gobbled up by the international banking system within a heartbeat of the invasions.

It has always been about gaining control of the central banking system in Libya. Oil is just a profitable side issue like every other state asset that is waiting in Libya to be privatised and sold off to multinational corporations like Bechtel, GE, and Goldman Sachs. Oil is important and it is certainly a target but it isn’t the driving force behind these global wars for profit. Banking is.” (v)

That said, as President Obama was busy being inaugurated, Colonel Gaddafi (January 2009) was mooting nationalising “US oil companies, as well of those of UK, Germany, Spain, Norway Canada and Italy”. “Oil should be owned by the state at this time, so we could better control prices by the increase or decrease in production”, stated the Colonel. (vi)

So how does the all tie together? Libya, in March, being praised by the majority of the UN for human rights progress across the board, to today being the latest, bombarded international pariah? A nation’s destruction enshrined in a UN resolution?

The answer lies in part with the Geneva based UN Watch. (vii) UN Watch is “a non-governmental organisation whose mandate is to monitor the performance of the United Nations“. With consultative status to the UN Economic and Social Council, with ties to the UN Department of Public Information, “UN Watch is affiliated with the American Jewish Committee” (AJC).

Among those involved in UN Watch are Co-Chair, AJC’s David A Harris. Core values: “AJC has long believed that the development of a comprehensive US energy programme is essential to the economic and social well-being of our country.” AJC’s website is an exceptionally instructive listen and read. (viii)

Ambassador Alfred Moses, former US Ambassador to Romania, heads UN Watch. His company, Secure Energy’s mission: “Improving US energy security“, “Securing America’s energy future“. (ix)

Board Member Ruth Wedgwood is “an international law expert … at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) a former member of Donald Rumsfeld’s Defence Policy Board (formerly headed by Richard Perle.)“, closely associated with “a number of neo-conservative and rightist pro-Israeli groups - including Freedom House, UN Watch and Benador Associates - a neo-con dominated public relations firm“. She “has been a vocal advocate of the war on terror … strong defender of the Patriot Act and decision to invade Iraq“. (x)

Executive Director Hillel Neuer has served as law clerk to the Supreme Court of Israel, is a Graduate Fellow at the Shalem Center think tank and holds a host of law degrees. In addition to extensive human rights legal advocacies and testimonies, as associate in the international law firm of Paul Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton and Garrison llp (New York), “He was associate in the legal team that successfully represented Raytheon Company in various claims against Hughes Electronics Corporation.” Neuer was also instrumental in achieving victory for the California Public Utilitites Commission in: “various disputes with Pacific Gas and Electric Company“. (xi)

Speakers at events hosted by the company have included Hillary “I met the rebel leader in Paris” Clinton (xii) and Vernon Jordan, former political advisor to Bill “I would be inclined to arm the rebels” Clinton. (xiii)

UN Watch’s relentless campaign “to remove Libya from the Human Rights Council” began in May 2010, “working closely with Libyan dissident Mohamed Eljahmi“. (vii) Mr Eljahmi is “a Libyan/American human rights activist. He is a co-founder and former Communication Officer of American Libyan Freedom Alliance. ALFA was founded 2003 to help educate and inform US government and media about Libya. Mr Eljahmi actively educates and informs US government, national and international media and NGOs about Libyan affairs.” (xiv)

An aspect of especial ire for UN Watch has been Libya’s place on the five-member investigation by the Human Rights Council into the use of mercenaries. Given their woeful excesses from Blackwater’s (now Xe) shoot-ups to CACI’s man-management at Abu Ghraib (then there’s Paravant, an Xe subsiduary at Bagram; Guantanamo and KBR), it is a supreme irony that UN Watch’s cry of “foul” over Libya has won out, while the US’s place on the council is unsullied. (Libya was suspended from the Human Rights Council on 25 February this year.) And did Libya employ ‘black African mercenaries’, to fight the rebels? In the fog of disinformation, certainties are scarce, but it is a story which would seem to be unravelling.

Then there is the water. Gaddafi’s project to make Libya’s vast desert bloom has been dubbed by some “The eighth wonder of the world.” A succinct overview cites: “the large quantities of water in Libya deep beneath the desert … Libya’s Great Man-Made River Project. A project worth 33 billion dollars. The value of the small reservoirs is about 70,000,000,000,000 dollars.” (xv) When the project was announced in September 1991, London and Washington were reported to be “ballistic“. At a ceremony attended by Arab and African heads of state, foreign diplomats and delegations, including President Mubarak of Egypt, King Hassan of Morocco, Gaddafi called it a gift to the Third World. He also said: “American threats against Libya will double.” (xvi)

Looking at the all, it is impossible not to think the truth of an attack of over thirty nations on a country of six million is buried deeper than Libya’s aquifers. ‘Operation Odyssey Dawn’ was well named. An odyssey indeed. Odysseus’s tortured journey lasted ten years.

End Note:

Libyan rebels in Benghazi said they have created a new national oil company to replace the corporation controlled by leader Muammar Gaddafi, whose assets were frozen by the United Nations Security Council.

The Transitional National Council released a statement announcing the decision made at a 19 March meeting to establish the “Libyan Oil Company as supervisory authority on oil production and policies in the country, based temporarily in Benghazi, and the appointment of an interim director general” of the company.

The council also said it “designated the Central Bank of Benghazi as a monetary authority competent in monetary policies in Libya and the appointment of a governor to the Central Bank of Libya, with a temporary headquarters in Benghazi“.

And of course, given Israel’s chronic water shortage, Libya’s abundant underground blessings, and the close geographical proximity of the two countries, there might be other regional advantages mooted in regime change.

Notes

i. http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=23660

ii. http://hdr.undp.org/en/

iii. http://www.statewatch.org/rendition/rendition.html

iv. http://www.benlawyers.com/law-of-libya/the-obligation-for-foreign-companies-which-execute-a-contract-in-libya-to-create-a-235.html

v. http://willyloman.wordpress.com/2011/03/29/un-resolution-in-libya-is-about-oil-and-their-central-banking-system-updated/#more-15364

vi. http://english.pravda.ru//hotspots/crimes/25-03-2011/117336-reason_for_war_oil-0/

vii. Full chronology of the Campaign against Libya: http://www.unwatch.org/site/apps/nlnet/content2.aspx?c=bdKKISNqEmG&b=1316871&ct=9142899

See also: http://blog.unwatch.org/index.php/category/libya/

viii. http://www.ajc.org/

ix. http://www.secureenergy.org/diplomatic-council-energy-security/ambassador-alfred-moses

x. http://www.rightweb.irc-online.org/profile/Wedgwood_Ruth

xi. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hillel_Neuer

xii. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-12741414

x111. http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0411/52466.html

See also: http://www.paulweiss.com/

xiv. http://www.genevasummit.org/speaker/71

ALFA, about which not a lot can be found: http://www.alfa-online.net/

xv. http://www.wearechange.org/?p=7359

xvi. http://american_almanac.tripod.com/libya.htm

See also: http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=24096

No cooperation with war crimes: step up the campaign

The following motion is being submitted by the CPGB-ML to the upcoming Stop the War national conference.

We believe that the proposed programme of action is both necessary and achieveable. We therefore call on all anti-imperialists and anti-war campaigners to give it the widest possible circulation in order to generate discussion and to mobilise support for this important work.

Individually, we may be powerless, but together, we do have the power to stop imperialism’s criminal wars.

CPGB-ML resolution to StW conference, October 2010

This conference notes the passing last year of a motion calling on the coalition “to do all in its power to promote a movement of industrial, political and military non-cooperation with all of imperialism’s aggressive war preparations and activities among British working people“.

Since that resolution was passed, many important developments have taken place, which on the one hand make this work more urgent, and on the other have created an atmosphere that is more receptive to our message.

Conference notes the attack on those condemning war crimes that was embodied in the draconian sentences handed down to the Gaza protestors. Congress further notes that these sentences were aimed not only at discouraging muslim youth from political activism, but also at dividing the anti-war and Palestine solidarity movements along racial lines, and branding Palestine solidarity as a ‘muslim’ issue.

Conference condemns the murder by Israeli commandos of nine solidarity activists aboard the Gaza Freedom Flotilla in May, despite the fact that the UN had called for the ships to be allowed to pass. Conference notes the UN’s recent findings that these murders were illegal – another war crime to add to the many being committed daily against the Palestinian people.

Conference further notes that in the atmosphere of international outrage that followed these murders, even Israeli-friendly politicians such as Cameron and Hague were forced to make statements condemning both the murders and the siege on Gaza.

Conference reaffirms its support for all those who have taken the lead in active non-cooperation over the past year, in particular for Joe Glenton, for the EDO Decommissioners, for the Gaza protestors, and for the many British participants in siege-busting missions by land and sea to Gaza.

Conference notes that the landmark acquittal in the case of the Decommissioners can only facilitate more actions of this kind, since it not only sets a legal precedent, but is a reflection of the general sense of disgust against Israeli war crimes in particular.

Conference reaffirms its belief that the majority of people in Britain are opposed to British imperialism’s wars, and considers that the time is ripe to make active non-cooperation a central theme of our work. Conference therefore calls on the incoming steering committee to take the line of non-cooperation into as many arenas as possible, including:

  1. Putting on a fundraising concert to draw attention to the Gaza prisoners’ plight and to raise money towards a campaign to overturn their convictions.
  2. Approaching Joe Glenton to take part in a national speaking tour against cooperation with the Afghan war.
  3. Giving full backing, including maximum possible publicity, to all those groups or individuals, whether affiliated to the Coalition or not, who, like the EDO Decommissioners, the Raytheon activists and Joe Glenton, are targeted by the state for refusing to cooperate with, or for actively attempting to prevent, the illegal wars and bombings waged and backed by British imperialism.
  4. Stepping up the campaign outside army recruitment centres and at army recruitment stalls in schools, colleges and universities, drawing attention to the war crimes committed by the British armed forces in Iraq and Afghanistan.
  5. Launching a full campaign inside the unions to draw attention to British, US and Israeli war crimes, with the aim of passing in each of them, and then at the TUC, motions condemning those crimes and calling on workers to refuse to cooperate in their commission, whether it be by making or moving munitions or other equipment, writing or broadcasting propaganda, or helping in any other way to smooth the path of the war machine.
  6. Following the excellent example set by PSC (eg, the campaign to draw attention to pro-Israeli propaganda in Panorama) and Media Lens (eg, alerts drawing attention to the media’s cover-up of war crimes committed in Fallujah) and working with these and others to draw in as many members and supporters as possible to an ongoing campaign to hold the media to account for their pivotal role in apologising for, covering up and normalising British, US and Israeli war crimes.
  7. Continuing and increasing the work already done to make Britain a place where war criminals, whether US, British or Israeli, can get no peace, through holding protests, through citizens’ arrests and through all other available channels, including using local, national and international courts to file charges and draw attention to their crimes.

Victory for the EDO decommissioners – the accusers not the accused: resisting war crimes is not a crime!

Five of the seven defendants in the EDO decommissioners trial in Brighton have been found not guilty of conspiracy to cause criminal damage by unanimous verdict given yesterday.

Clearly under pressure from the growing public anger against Israeli attrocities and British complicity, the judge directed the jury to remember the suffering of the Palestinians during the massacre, and pointed out to them that legal channels to oppose EDO-MBM had been exhausted.

The remaining two defendants await their verdict, which is likely to be decided on Friday by the jury at Hove crown court.

The defendants were on trial for decommissioning the EDO-MBM arms factory in Brighton during last year’s attack on Gaza by Israel. Six activists entered the factory on 17 January 2009 to sabotage the production of essential component parts for bomb release mechanisms in F16 fighter planes used by the Israeli ‘Defence’ Force.

The action caused over £300,000 worth of damaged and, most importantly, disrupted the supply chain of the Israeli war machine.

The defendants took the stand as the accusers not the accused, admitting they had deliberately sabotaged the factory in order to prevent Israeli war crimes from continuing in Gaza. As the trial proceeded, EDO-MBM was exposed as being complicit in these crimes through supplying parts for the F16 fighter jets.

This result follows the acquittal at the beginning of June of nine women for their part in the protests at the Raytheon armaments factory in Derry in January 2009, and the victory in 2008 of the Raytheon 9, who occupied the Derry plant during Israel’s attack on Lebanon in 2006.

Meanwhile, however, a large number of young people, mostly muslim, who demonstrated in London against the Israeli attacks on Gaza in 2008/9, have been handed down outrageous and draconian sentences simply for showing their opposition to Israeli war crimes.

And Joe Glenton remains in prison after being court-martialled for his heroic and principled refusal to return to the illegal war in Afghanistan.

Full support needs to be given to the campaigns to free Joe and the Gaza protestors. We must show that such acts of intimidation will not deter our opposition to war crimes or stop the growing Palestine solidarity movement.

The vindication of the action taken by the EDO decommissioners is a victory for the anti-war and Palestine solidarity movements.

Free Joe Glenton; jail the warmongers!
Free the Gaza protestors; jail the warmongers!
No cooperation with war crimes!

SEE ALSO:
Smash-EDO decommissioners vindicated as Brighton crown court agrees that Israel was committing war crimes in Gaza
decommissioners.co.uk

Israel accused of executing parents in front of children in Gaza

Via the Telegraph.

One nine-year-old boy said his father had been shot dead in front of him despite surrendering to Israeli soldiers with his hands in the air.

Another youngster described witnessing the deaths of his mother, three brothers and uncle after the house they were in was shelled.

He said his mother and one of his siblings had been killed instantly, while the others bled to death over a period of days.

A psychiatrist treating children in the village of Zeitoun on the outskirts of Gaza City, where the alleged incidents took place, described the deaths as a “massacre”.

Rawya Borno, a Jordanian doctor, said civilians, including children, were rounded up and killed by Israeli troops.

Israel has denied the claims, dismissing them as Hamas propaganda, but said that an investigation is being conducted into soldiers’ conduct in the area.

In interviews with ITV News, Palestinians claimed that Israeli forces knowingly killed civilians in Zeitoun on the morning of Jan 14.

Abdullah Samouni, nine, described the moment his father was allegedly “executed” by Israeli soldiers.

Holding his arms in the air, he said: “He was surrendering like this. My father came out and they shot him right away.”

A boy named Ahmed said he was trapped for days in the wreckage of the shelled Samouni family’s house.

He said: “My mother was dead beside me, she was clutching my brother Nasser and they were dead. My brother Itzaq was bleeding for two days and then he died. My brother Izmael bled to death in one day. My uncle Talal was bleeding for two hours and he died. God bless them.”

Dr Borno said: “It’s a massacre. They collected them from their houses. They knew that they were civilians. They were children.”

When asked if Hamas had been in Zeitoun, Dr Borno replied: “Suppose that there is one of the fighters around, what is it to do with all these? Is the price to kill the family as a whole? Is this baby carrying a machine gun?”

Israeli spokesman Mark Regev suggested the claims could be Hamas propaganda and said an investigation was under way. However, he said that Israeli troops had reported that Zeitoun was “full of Hamas” militants and that soldiers encountered booby traps in “every house” in the village.

He said: “When people live in an authoritarian regime, when it’s clear there is an official message and the message is to give out atrocity propaganda, [then] at least I think we should ask questions.

“Hamas has an interest in sending out this sort of atrocity propaganda.

“What happened in that village is under investigation. I know from speaking to IDF officers that there was very serious combat in that village, that every house was booby-trapped, there were guns. Very difficult military operation.

“If there is any Israeli solder that has done something inappropriate of course that will be discovered and there will be law, but I am very concerned about a situation where children are manipulated, where everyone is on the same message.

“We know that village was full of Hamas fighters. It’s against the rules of engagement of the Israeli army to shoot innocent civilians.”

DPRK’s support to Palestinians’ struggle reiterated

Via KCNA

Pyongyang, January 21 (KCNA) — The DPRK extends full support and solidarity to the Palestinian people in their struggle to drive the Israeli aggressors out of their land and take back the legitimate rights including the right to self-determination.

A DPRK delegate said this in a speech made at a special meeting of the UN General Assembly held on Jan. 15 in connection with Israel’s attack on the Gaza Strip of Palestine.

He bitterly dismissed the said aggression as a wanton violation of the UN Charter and international law and an undisguised provocation to the Mid-east peace process.

Referring to the fact that the Israeli army mercilessly killed innocent Palestinians and ruthlessly deprived them of the cradle of their life as evidenced by the destruction of dwelling houses, public establishments and schools, etc., he went on:

What should not be overlooked is that the Israeli army’s dreadful atrocities are being committed under the strong patronage of the U.S.

The reality proves once again that the U.S. is the harasser of world peace and the worst human rights abuser.

It is not only the legitimate rights but also the just cause for the Palestinians to struggle to retake the occupied territories and build a sovereign and independent state.

Israel should stop all military actions in the Gaza Strip and immediately withdraw its aggressor armed forces from there.