Welcome to Sott.net
Mon, 11 Dec 2023
The World for People who Think

Puppet Masters

Star of David

Israel - Negev's Bedouins: A New Nakba in the Making

demolished bedouin home Israel
© Agence France Presse/Hazem Bader
A Palestinian Bedouin looks for belongings after Israeli army bulldozers destroyed their shacks and tents near the Jewish settlements of Maaon and Karmel, south of the West Bank.
Bedouins in the Negev continue to be targeted by Israeli efforts to displace them. The Israeli government has now approved a plan that would uproot 30,000 Palestinians and place them in "recognized villages."

The situation of Palestinians inside the green line is bleak, especially when compared to the hopeful atmosphere sparked throughout the region by the Arab Spring. Plans are underway to forcibly relocate tens of thousands of Palestinian Bedouins to designated towns that are in a deplorable condition.

The relocation scheme was among the recommendations of the Prawer Report, which called for relocating more than 30,000 Arab Bedouins in the Siaj section of the Negev to housing compounds elsewhere in the desert region south of the country.

Star of David

Palestinians left homeless as Israel demolishes West Bank houses

israel home demolition
© Amnesty International
Palestinian children in 'Aqaba on a road demolished this morning
Israeli military bulldozers demolished three homes and water cisterns in 'Aqaba village in the northern West Bank on Thursday morning, leaving 22 people, including 12 children, homeless.

Since the beginning of the year, over 750 Palestinians in the West Bank have been displaced after their homes were demolished by the Israeli military, nearly five times more than in the same period last year, according to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.

The bulldozers destroyed the homes of Khaled Sbeih, Basem Sbeih and Abdel Nasser Sbeih, leaving the three families with a few salvaged belongings on the street.

"This happened without warning. We had received a letter informing us that we had no permit to build, but there was no date for a demolition or anything like that," Khaled Sbeih told Amnesty International.

"We woke up in the morning and the children went to school. When they came back we had no home. I don't know how to explain it to them," he said.

Israeli army bulldozers also dug up more than two kilometres of main road in the area of the village.


Geithner's "succinct" message irks Europeans

Timothy Geithner
© Czarek Sokolowski / AP
U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner steps out of an informal meeting of European Union finance ministers in Wroclaw, Poland, Friday, Sept. 16, 2011. Geithner joined the meeting in Wroclaw, Poland, the first time that a U.S. finance chief has attended such a gathering, in a sign of how the U.S. is getting increasingly concerned over the global impact of the eurozone debt crisis.

It was an unprecedented visit designed to spur the euro zone into action. But Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner's high-profile trip to Europe left some European officials more dumbstruck than starstruck.

Geithner's decision to travel to the small city of Wroclaw to discuss the sovereign debt problems of Greece, Ireland, Italy and the wider euro zone was the clearest indication yet of the severity of the near two-year-old crisis, which now threatens the global economy not just the single currency bloc.

Officials said Geithner was coming to propose how the region might try leveraging its emergency bailout fund -- the 440 billion euro European Financial Stability Facility -- to better tackle the crisis, much as the United States used leverage to handle the fallout from the subprime collapse.

Star of David

Israel to retroactively legitimize illegal settlements that were "looted from their owners"

Illegal settlement
© Vos Iz Neias
Illegal settlement

One of the West Bank's largest illegal Israeli settlements, Ofra, is now going to be legitimized and upheld by the state of Israel regardless of the fact that much of it was built on privately owned Palestinian land.

Does this represent the state of Israel spitting in the face of the Palestinian people in preparation for their bid for UN statehood? Is this a warning of what is to come if the Palestinians will not back down and kowtow to their Israeli occupiers?

We can't be sure, but we do know that this is yet another instance of Israel flouting international law without hesitation.


US: Clinton Popularity Prompts Buyer's Remorse

The most popular national political figure in America today is one who was rejected by her own party three years ago: Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

Nearly two-thirds of Americans hold a favorable view of her and one-third are suffering a form of buyer's remorse, saying the U.S. would be better off now if she had become president in 2008 instead of Barack Obama.

The finding in the latest Bloomberg National Poll shows a higher level of wishful thinking about a Hillary Clinton presidency than when a similar question was asked in July 2010. Then, a quarter of Americans held such a view.

"Looking back, I wonder if she would have been a stronger leader, knowing the games and the politics and all that goes on," said Susan Dunlop, 50, a homemaker in New Port Richey, Florida. "I don't think she would have bent as much."

Penis Pump

Critics of Berlusconi's womanising just jealous: Putin

© Agence France-Presse
Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin (left) and his Italian counterpart Silvio Berlusconi talk during a joint press conference at the Villa Gernetto in 2010. Putin has made light of the sex scandals surrounding Berlusconi, saying critics were simply jealous of his sexual prowess
Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin on Friday made light of the sex scandals surrounding Italian premier Silvio Berlusconi, saying critics were simply jealous of his sexual prowess.

"However much they nag Signor Berlusconi for his special attitude to the beautiful sex, and by the way they nag him mainly because of jealousy, he has shown himself as a responsible statesman," Putin said at an international investment forum in Sochi, quoted by the state RIA Novosti news agency.

He was speaking in praise of Berlusconi's financial belt-tightening to battle Italy's economic woes.

Berlusconi is facing charges of paying for sex with a 17-year-old girl and eight people were charged Thursday with procuring prostitutes for his parties in an attempt to curry favour.

Arrow Down

Is China Ready To Pull The Plug?

© Unknown
There are two mainstream market assumptions that, in my mind, prevail over all others. The continuing function of the Dow, the sustained flow of capital into and out of the banking sector, and the full force spending of the federal government are ALL entirely dependent on the lifespan of these dual illusions; one, that the U.S. Dollar is a legitimate safe haven investment and will remain so indefinitely, and two, that China, like many other developing nations, will continue to prop up the strength of the dollar indefinitely because it is "in their best interest". In the dimly lit bowels of Wall Street such ideas are so entrenched and pervasive, to question their validity is almost sacrilegious. Only after the recent S&P downgrade of America's AAA credit rating did the impossible become thinkable to some MSM analysts, though a considerable portion of the day-trading herd continue to roll onward, while the time bomb strapped to the ass end of their financial house is ticking away.

The debate over the health and longevity of the dollar comes down to one very simple and undeniable root pillar of economics; supply and demand. The supply of dollars throughout the financial systems of numerous countries is undoubtedly overwhelming. In fact, the private Federal Reserve has been quite careful in maintaining a veil of secrecy over the full extent of dollar saturation in foreign markets in order to hide the sheer volume of greenback devaluation and inflation they have created. If for some reason the reserves of dollars held overseas by investors and creditors were to come flooding back into the U.S., we would see a hyperinflationary spiral more destructive than any in recorded history. As the supply of dollars around the globe increases exponentially, so too must foreign demand, otherwise, the debt machine short-circuits, and newly impoverished Americans will be using Ben Franklins for sod in their adobe huts. As I will show, demand for dollars is not increasing to match supply, but is indeed stalled, ready to crumble.


Major discovery: a purpose of the war in Afghanistan

© Unknown
The Washington Post today describes the failure of regimented programs in Afghanistan to reintegrate Taliban teenagers ("Taliban" (alt.: "Terrorist") means "any Afghan who fights against the presence of foreign military forces in their country" and "reintegrate" means "persuading or compelling them to passively acquiesce to those forces"):
The teenage insurgents spend their days learning to make shoes and bookshelves, listening to religious leaders denounce the radical interpretation of Islam they learned as children.

But when they return to their cells at Kabul's juvenile rehabilitation center, the boys with wispy beards and cracking voices talk only of the holy war from which they were plucked and their plans to resume fighting for the Taliban.

As the Taliban presses its efforts to recruit teenage fighters, Afghan officials and their international backers have crafted a program to reintegrate the country's youngest insurgents into mainstream society. But that ambition is coming up against the intransigence of the teens, who say they would rather be on the battlefield.

"We'll fight against America for a thousand years if we have to," said Ali Ahmad, 17, sitting at a desk that has hearts and Koran verses scratched in the wood . . .

"They bring us here to change us," said Nane Asha, in his late teens. "But this is our way. We cannot be changed." . . .

The Taliban visited Asha's school when he was about 13, preaching the evils of American interlopers and the value of violent jihad. Asha approached the speaker after the sermon ended. "How can I join you?" he asked. . . .

Within a few weeks, Asha was enrolled in a six-month training course, learning how to fire a Kalashnikov and to connect a nest of wires and explosives that could take out a U.S. tank. He studied the material obsessively. . . .

Reintegration is at the heart of U.S. and Afghan government strategies to wind down the war, with schooling and employment being offered to coax fighters away from the insurgency.


A Parent's Horrid Nightmare: California Passes Vaccinations Without Parental Consent

The state of California has just passed bill AB499, which will permit minor children as young as 12 years old to be vaccinated with sexually transmitted disease vaccines like Gardasil without parental knowledge or parental consent. This means that if you live in California, school or medical personnel would be allowed to vaccinate your child against an STD without your ever knowing it.

At issue, of course, is whether 12-year-olds are mature enough to fully analyze the benefits versus risks of vaccination (or any medical treatment for that matter), or recognize the alternatives to STD prevention, such as abstinence. Meanwhile, a child could suffer a vaccine reaction and the parent, not knowing the child had been vaccinated, could mistake it for the flu or another condition, delaying getting help until it is too late.

But, perhaps the greatest issue of all is whether this law violates your basic right to be involved in important decisions regarding your child's health.

Bad Guys

Bedouin transfer plan shows Israel's racism

The Israeli cabined approved a plan which enforces the relocation of 30,000 Bedu

The Israeli cabinet accepted plans to relocate Bedouin villages to government-approved towns.

Recently the Israeli cabinet approved a major plan for the Negev that seeks to "relocate" an estimated 30,000 Bedouin Palestinian citizens to government-approved townships.

The details that have emerged about the government's 'solution' for Bedouin Palestinians show a continuation of the colonial logic that has shaped Israeli policy in the Negev since 1948. Reports suggest that the state will reject half of the Bedouins' land claims. For the tens of thousands of Bedouin Palestinians in 'unrecognised villages', there is now uncertainty about exactly which communities will be 'legalised' - and which will be demolished, their residents forcibly transferred.

Unsurprisingly, you wouldn't know that from the Israeli Prime Minister's communiqué about the decision, which repeatedly used language like development and absorption. There was only a hint about the forced relocation, in the promise to "strengthen the [state's] enforcement mechanism".