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Heart - Black

Israeli airstrike hits Gaza family's home, murdering 12, including 4 children

gaza family murder
© Mahmud Hams / Agence France-Presse / Getty Images / November 18, 2012Palestinians search the debris of the Dalu family home following an Israeli airstrike in Gaza City on Sunday that killed at least 12 people, 10 of them members of the family.
An Israeli airstrike here on Sunday killed 10 members of one family, mostly women and children, marking the deadliest single attack and worst civilian tragedy since the current fighting in the Gaza Strip began last week.

"This is a massacre,'' shouted Nasser Dalu, a cousin and neighbor as he watched in anguish as his relatives were pulled from debris. "What did these children do?"

Two male next-door-neighbors were also killed, bringing the total death count to 12, with more than 20 people wounded.

The 2:30 p.m. attack took place in the Naser district, a crowded residential neighborhood of Gaza City.

Star of David

Israel's Shortsighted Assassination: Hamas' Al-Jabari was working to PREVENT rocket attacks

Ahmed al-Jabari, Hamas negotiator working on a cease-fire to stop rocket attacks on Israel -- assassinated by Israel.
Jerusalem - Ahmed Al-Jabari - the strongman of Hamas, the head of its military wing, the man responsible for the abduction of the Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit - was assassinated on Wednesday by Israeli missiles.

Why? Israel's government has declared that the aim of the current strikes against Gaza is to rebuild deterrence so that no rockets will be fired on Israel. Israel's targeted killings of Hamas leaders in the past sent the Hamas leadership underground and prevented rocket attacks on Israel temporarily. According to Israeli leaders, deterrence will be achieved once again by targeting and killing military and political leaders in Gaza and hitting hard at Hamas's military infrastructure. But this policy has never been effective in the long term, even when the founder and spiritual leader of Hamas, Sheik Ahmed Yassin, was killed by Israel. Hamas didn't lay down its guns then, and it won't stop firing rockets at Israel now without a cease-fire agreement.

Comment: In other words, Jabari was against the Saudi and CIA-connected groups who oppose Hamas, the ones largely behind the rocket attacks on Israel. Conveniently for Israel, he's now dead, provoking the very type of retaliation he would have worked to control, giving Israel the tired excuse that it is only 'responding' to attacks from Gaza, and not the opposite.


SOTT Focus: An Israeli speaks out against the crimes of her government

© Unknown
I am ashamed to be an Israeli. There, I said it. And yes, I know better than most that there are many good and kind people in Israel. But what is happening right now in Gaza in the name of those good people CANNOT be tolerated, because it goes against everything humane and decent.

Yes, there are deaths on the Israeli side as well, but despite the heartbreak and tragedy experienced by the families of the victims, it's important to understand that the amount of pain and suffering experienced by the Palestinians is infinitely greater, and it's the responsibility of all of us to speak out against it!

We forgot the lessons of the past, and because of that, because of our lack of responsibility, ignorance and inaction, we allowed psychopathic leaders and their twisted ideologies to take hold of our own perception of reality. But if we could just stop for a moment and think, we would clearly see that this situation is not about "who fired first" and "how many rockets" (although, research shows that Israel was the aggressor in most past cases, including this one), but about the basics, like human decency, conscience, and not having blood on one's hands after our government ("oops, again") is murdering children and calling it 'self-defense'.

And that's the bottom line, that I, as an Israeli, even if I didn't pull the trigger, will still have blood on my hands if I see what is happening and stay silent.

Star of David

The History of Israeli Spying: The Mother of all Scandals

Once again, Israel has been caught with spies at the highest levels of the US Government.

At the heart of the investigation are two people who work at The American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), a powerful pro-Israel lobby in Washington. The FBI investigation, headed up by Dave Szady, has involved wiretaps, undercover surveillance and photography that CBS News was told document the passing of classified information from the mole, to the men at AIPAC, and on to the Israelis.

CBS sources say that last year the suspected spy, described as a trusted analyst at the Pentagon, turned over a presidential directive on U.S. policy toward Iran while it was, "in the draft phase when U.S. policy-makers were still debating the policy." This put the Israelis, according to one source, "inside the decision-making loop" so they could "try to influence the outcome." [CBS News]

Once again Israel denies wrongdoing, or faced with incontrovertible evidence (in this case one of the spies has reportedly cooperated with the FBI) dismisses the spying with the claim that such spying is harmless, because Israel and the United States are such good friends.

Well, let us take a closer look at that idea of "harmless espionage" by recalling Israel's most famous failed spy, Jonathan Pollard.

Jonathan Pollard is an American of Jewish descent, born in Galveston Texas, who established a career as an intelligence analyst for the US Navy. There have been many theories offered as to why Pollard decided to betray his country of birth to the Jewish state, but that Pollard did betray his country of birth to Israel is beyond all doubt. Pollard's defense was that he did not spy so much against the United States, only that he spied for Israel, sending them documents that in his opinion the US should have shared with Israel anyway.

That it was never Pollards job to decide what documents Israel should have was apparently irrelevant. Pollard arrogated that authority to himself. From his position of trust within the US Navy, Pollard delivered over 1000 classified documents to Israel for which he was well paid. Included in those documents were the names of over 150 US agents in the Mideast, who were eventually "turned" into agents for Israel.

But by far the most egregious damage done by Pollard was to steal classified documents relating to the US Nuclear Deterrent relative to the USSR and send them to Israel. According to sources in the US State Department, Israel then turned around and traded those stolen nuclear secrets to the USSR in exchange for increased emigration quotas from the USSR to Israel. Other information that found its way from the US to Israel to the USSR resulted in the loss of American agents operating inside the USSR. Casper Weinberger, in his affidavit opposing a reduced sentence for Pollard, described the damage done to the United States thus, "[It is] difficult to conceive of a greater harm to national security than that caused by... Pollard's treasonous behavior."

This should end the suggestion that Israel's spies are harmless. They are not. The United States' nuclear deterrent cost an estimated five trillion taxpayer dollars during the 50s and 60s to build and maintain, and less than $100,000 for Pollard to undermine. Israel waited 13 years to admit Pollard had been spying for them, and now lobbies for his release, having granted him Israeli citizenship.


Gaza families huddle together hoping for safety from israeli assault

Zaytoun neighborhood of Gaza city
© Ashraf Amra / APA imagesThe Zaytoun neighborhood of Gaza City has been especially hard-hit by Israel’s relentless bombing.
More than 15 members of the Dalloul family now sleep in one room of their home in the al-Zaytoun neighborhood, a densely-populated area in the southeast of Gaza City.

"All the children and elder members of our family squeeze onto these mattresses when night falls," Naeema Dalloul, mother of seven, told The Electronic Intifada on Saturday afternoon as deafening bomb explosions could be heard in the background.

Dalloul and her children normally live in the Tal al-Hawa neighborhood to the west, but when Israel began its intense bombardment of the Gaza Strip on Wednesday, she moved to her parents' home in al-Zaytoun.

"When the air strikes began on Wednesday I was on the phone with my husband, who is now traveling. I was concerned about my seven children, so I moved here to stay with them," Dalloul said. "But as you see the attacks are widespread and no one seems safe."

In fact, the al-Zaytoun neighborhood has been one of the most heavily bombed areas.

Medical sources and human rights organizations said the death toll in the current Israeli assault had reached approximately 40 by Saturday afternoon, with at least seven children among the dead. Hundreds more are reported injured.

On Saturday, at least one person was killed and seven injured in attacks on al-Zaytoun.

Heart - Black

Best of the Web: Israeli pathological war in photos: Israel relentlessly bombs Gaza, West Bank protests repressed

Hanen Tafesh
© Majdi Fathi / APA images)The mother of 10-month-old Hanen Tafesh, killed the day before in an Israeli air strike, mourns over her daughter’s body before her funeral in Gaza City, 16 November.
Israel has shown no mercy in its bombing of the besieged and occupied Gaza Strip, as airstrikes and shelling entered into the fifth day on Sunday (see previous photostory documenting the run-up to and first days of the assault). Israel has reportedly approved the drafting of 75,000 reservists, though so far there has been no ground invasion.

With nearly 50 fatalities in Gaza since Israel's breaking of a tenuous ceasefire on Wednesday, the World Health Organization warned on Saturday that Gaza's hospitals "are overwhelmed with casualties from Israel's bombings and face critical shortages of drugs and medical supplies," according to the Reuters news agency ("Gaza hospitals stretched, need supplies to treat wounded: WHO").

Reuters adds: "the WHO, quoting Health Ministry officials in Gaza, said 382 people have been injured - 245 adults and 137 children." Gaza's health facilities were already "severely over stretched mainly as a result of the siege of Gaza," the UN organization said.


Israel-Gaza conflict: Psychopathic "Gates of Hell"

Will the crisis in Gaza escalate? Should we expect a ground incursion? What does Israel hope to achieve with its military assault this time? How well is Gaza prepared for another conflict? And do the Palestinians have the right to use military force to resist Israel's siege of Gaza? CrossTalking with Norman Finkelstein, Dan Pollak and Harry Fear.


Best of the Web: Israel and the U.S. CREATED Hamas, Hezbollah and Al Qaeda

Israel created Hamas
Creating the Enemies We Now Fight Against

We've extensively documented that the U.S. and Israel created Al Qaeda and other terrorist groups in an attempt to fight other enemies.

Larry Johnson - a counterterrorism official at the U.S. State Department - says:
The Israelis are their own worst enemies when it comes to fighting terrorism. They are like a guy who sets fire to his hair and then tries to put it out by hitting it with a hammer. They do more to incite and sustain terrorism than curb it.
As one example, Israel helped create Hamas.

Veteran journalist Robert Dreyfuss writes:
In the decades before 9/11, hard-core activists and organizations among Muslim fundamentalists on the far right were often viewed as allies for two reasons, because they were seen a fierce anti-communists and because the opposed secular nationalists such as Egypt's Gamal Abdel Nasser, Iran's Mohammed Mossadegh.


In Syria, the United States, Israel, and Jordan supported the Muslim Brotherhood in a civil war against Syria. And ... Israel quietly backed Ahmed Yassin and the Muslim Brotherhood in the West Bank and Gaza, leading to the establishment of Hamas.

War Whore

Israel ready to expand Gaza offensive, says Netanyahu

Israeli prime minister says Israel is prepared for 'significant' widening of Gaza operation as bombardment enters fifth day

© RONEN ZVULUN/ReutersIsraeli soldiers prepare for mass murder near the Gaza Strip, November 16, 2012.
The Israeli prime minister, Binyamin Netanyahu, has said it is prepared for a "significant" widening of its Gaza offensive as the bombardment entered its fifth day.

The Palestinian death toll since the conflict began on Wednesday topped 50 after a night of sustained bombing that killed seven civilians, including five children, according to a Gaza health official. Two children died and 12 people were injured when two houses were hit in northern Gaza.

Shells fired from Israeli gunboats off the coast pummelled Gaza for an hour in the middle of the night, causing massive explosions, and six people were injured when two Israeli war planes hit media buildings in Gaza City.

Netanyahu told the Israeli cabinet in remarks broadcast on Sunday: "We are exacting a heavy price from Hamas and the terrorist organisations and the Israel Defence Forces are prepared for a significant expansion of the operation."

War Whore

Obama: Israel has 'every right' to defend itself from Gaza missile attacks

President Barack Obama said Sunday that Israel has "every right" to defend itself against missile attacks by militants inside Gaza but warned that escalating the offensive with Israeli ground troops could undermine any hope of a peace process with the Palestinians.

"Let's understand what the precipitating event here that's causing the current crisis and that was an ever-escalating number of missiles that were landing not just in Israeli territory but in areas that are populated, and there's no country on Earth that would tolerate missiles raining down on its citizens from outside its borders," Obama said at press conference in Thailand at the start of a three-nation tour in Asia.

"So we are fully supportive of Israel's right to defend itself from missiles landing on people's homes and workplaces and potentially killing civilians."

He added: "Israel has every right to expect that it does not have missiles fired into its territory. If that can be accomplished without a ramping up of military activity in Gaza, that's preferable. It's not just preferable for the people of Gaza. It's also preferable for Israelis, because if Israeli troops are in Gaza, they're much more at risk of incurring fatalities or being wounded."

Comment: Obama "warned that escalating the offensive with Israeli ground troops could undermine any hope of a peace process with the Palestinians."

Mr. Obama, to what peace process are you referring to (Security Council resolutions, Arab-Israeli Accords, road-map to peace, Geneva Peace conference)? The list is long, as are the years of U.S. lies and bowing to Israeli aggression(s) toward her neighbors. Also, how is Israel defending itself, if they are in fact "escalating the offensive"? It's 'cause Israel has been on the offensive since the mid-1940s!
© Carlin