Friday, February 29, 2008

Canadians funding Jewish security

(From JTA)-For the first time ever, the Canadian government is giving money to Jewish institutions to bolster security.
The move marks the first time ever a government in Canada has allocated public funds for Jewish security needs.

Friday’s announcement came from Canada's public security minister, Stockwell Day, who said the money "allows community centers and places of worship to enhance their sense of safety and to be a deterrent to those who would have malicious aims in acting out their criminal and hate-motivated crimes.

The grant to the Jewish groups is the first made under the $3 million Security Infrastructure Pilot Program, established by Canada's Conservative government last summer to help ethnic and religious communities combat hate crimes.
The money will go to community centers, Jewish schools, synagogues and a Jewish burial society in Toronto, Ottawa, Calgary, Edmonton and Owen Sound, Ontario. It is meant for security equipment and hardware such as alarm systems, cameras, fences, lighting and intercom systems.

Jewish communities across Canada have been advised to review security measures in the wake of threats from Hezbollah following the assassination of arch-terrorist Imad Mughniyah (Most Wanted Terrorist-FBI.Gov.) in Damascus on Feb. 12.
A condition of the grant is that recipients match the amount, either dollar for dollar or with services in kind.
In Toronto, the money is on top of $3 million the local United Jewish Appeal has allocated for security over the last three years. (Canadian Govm't funding Jewish security)

"I'm not sorry for having plotted carnage among civilians"

(AP Photo/Majdi Mohammed)

Palestinian Shifa al-Qudsi, 30, who was caught and jailed six years ago after planning to blow herself up at an Israeli beach hotel, fills out a form at the Prisoner Club offices in the West Bank town of Tulkarem, Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2008. Just out of prison, the 30-year-old former hairdresser said she isn't sorry for having plotted carnage among civilians, times were different then, she explained, but now hopes to meet ordinary Israelis to explain herself and help bridge the hostile divide between the two peoples.

"Times were different then"? Does Mr Olmert agree with this statement?

Egypt supports comprehensive Palestinian dialogue

Frankly speaking, I do not understand a word of what he's saying, but I guess, coming from the Egyptian State Information Service, it must be important.
See what you can make of it...

Egypt supports comprehensive Palestinian dialogue

Egyptian Minister Omar Suleiman will discuss during a visit to Israel on Tuesday calm down measures, reopening crossings and lifting a suffocating blockade imposed on the Gaza Strip, MP Mohamed Bassiouni said Thursday 28/2/2008.

In statements to Radio Sout Falasteen (Voice of Palestine), Bassiouni, who chairs the People's Assembly Committee on Arab, Foreign and National Security Affairs, said Egypt backed Palestinian-Palestinian dialogue. (

Israel-Gaza: ready to roll!

JERUSALEM, Feb. 29- (Xinhua)- A senior Israeli defense official on Friday said a large-scale military operation in Gaza is "unavoidable" in a bid to bring a halt to the Qassam rocket fire on Israel.

"It will be sad and difficult, but we have no other choice," Israeli Deputy Defense Minister Matan Vilna'i told Israel Army Radio. (Matan Vilnai-Knesset Member)

Vilna'i said that Israel is getting close to using its full strength, noting that Israel so far has used a small percentage of the army's power.

Over the past few days, Israel Defense Forces (IDF) have positioned an artillery battery near Kibbutz Beeri, located about three km from the Gaza border, and dozens of tanks have made their way to an assembling area just north of the Gaza Strip, local daily Yedioth Ahronoth reported earlier Friday (Israel minister warns Palestinians of 'holocaust').

Forces from the Givati Brigade, the Armored Corps' 9th Battalion and the Engineering Corps have already entered the Gaza Strip ahead of a possible large-scale ground incursion, said the report.

The reinforcements, while limited, appear to indicate increased readiness on the part of the IDF, it noted. (Large-scale Gaza operation unavoidable)

See also: Pre-war atmosphere from

'USS Cole' sent to Lebanese coast

The United States has sent the USS Cole warship to the coast of Lebanon in a "show of support" for regional stability, US officials said today.

A senior Bush administration official said the US was concerned about the political deadlock in Lebanon, which Washington blames on Syrian interference.

"The United States believes a show of support is important for regional stability. We are very concerned about the situation in Lebanon. It has dragged on very long," said the senior official, who spoke on condition anonymity. (IrishTime)

Meanwhile, Hizbullah rejected the deployment of U.S. warships off the coast of Lebanon, calling it a threat to Lebanese sovereignty and independence that will not affect the Shiite group.

"We are facing an American threat against Lebanon," Hizbullah legislator Hasan Fadlallah said. "It is clear this threat and intimidation will not affect us," he said on local television. (Naharnet)

Latest News: Three other Navy vessels are
also heading to the Mediterranean as part of a regularly scheduled deployment: the USS Ross destroyer, the USS Nassau amphibious assault ship and the USS Philippine Sea cruiser.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Vandals strike memorial to Austrian Jews

An artwork remembering the suffering of Austrian Jews under the Nazis was destroyed days after it was installed.

Artist Peter Wagner had planted the 70 wooden stakes last week alongside a road in the town of Oberschutzen, near a controversial memorial that serves as a reminder of Germany's annexation of Austria on March 12, 1938.

According to the Kurier newspaper, Wagner's project was called "zone38 -- 70 years after the annexation," and was dedicated to the memory of the Jews of the Oberwart district.

Wagner reported the incident to the police.

Oberschutzen Mayor Gunter Toth said he had noticed that many stakes had been removed but thought it had something to do with traffic regulations.

Wagner said the vandalism was probably a deliberate act by those who disliked being reminded of the past.

Austria has been slow to recogize its complicity in the Nazi crimes.

"Someone deliberately did this, removing the stakes so we can't set them back up again," he said.

Wagner's has another art remembrance project scheduled to open nearby in mid-March. (JTA.ORG)

Eröffnung am 18. Feber 2008, Straßenabschnitt in der Nähe des Anschlussdenkmals.

Oberwart und der Anschluss vor 70 Jahren
Oberwart - Das Schicksal der Oberwarter Juden nach dem Anschluss im März 1938 an Hitler-Deutschland steht im Mittelpunkt des Projekts zone38.

Peter Wagner's Project
Peter Wagner Website

Vatican to Israel: "It is a question of life or death"

"The Palestinian question could jeopardise the Pope's visit to Israel" says the Nuncio.

by Manuela Borraccino
Rome - February 26, 2008

The Vatican has warned Israeli officials that the Holy See will not sign an agreement that cannot be sustained locally. The warning came during the last plenary meeting Dec. 13, aimed at resolving a key treaty between Israel and the Holy See.

That's according to Archbishop Antonio Franco, the Apostolic Nuncio in Israel (who is also the Apostolic Delegate in Jerusalem and Palestine, as well as Apostolic Nuncio in Cyprus) during a recent visit through Rome. Speaking to, the archbishop said he was "not making any forecasts" on the duration of the negotiations on tax and property of the Church in Israel, but stressed that both parties were working "with a great deal of good will" and there was progress because "the State of Israel is showing great understanding". But he added it was essential the negotiators understand "it is a question of life or death", because the "very survival of the Church of the Holy Land" is at stake.

Your Excellency, according to some of the participants, the last meeting in Jerusalem is alleged to have ended in stalemate. Was that really the case?
I can say that on the Israeli side, there was a certain disappointment because the Vatican delegation did not immediately accept the two proposals on tax exemption put forward by Israel. In my opinion, however, this did not bring the talks to a standstill or represent a backwards step. On the contrary, I would say that progress is being made, especially in understanding the concrete situation. The Holy See is not asking for privileges. We are asking, in the name of the Catholic Church, that the rights enjoyed until now by Christians resident in that very special land are implemented. And this is being asked because it is a question of life or death. If the Catholic communities in the Holy Land have to be subject to the obligations of taxes they will gradually disappear because they live exclusively on what they receive from the universal Church. Local resources are reduced to a minimum and this structure has to be maintained, not just the Holy Places but also the presence of a Church which was born there and which has real difficulties to survive.

What reaction have you had from the Israeli authorities on these considerations?
I think that really understanding what is at stake in these talks is already progress. Naturally, conditions will have to be reached which are satisfactory for Israel, but also for the Christians living there. Otherwise, the agreement will not be signed because this would mean exposing the Christians in the Holy Land to an unsustainable situation. I said this clearly at the last two meetings: the Holy See cannot sign an agreement that cannot be sustained locally. Until now, the Church has been living as it has always lived: with tax exemptions. And we must acknowledge that the State of Israel really intends to find a solution that is acceptable to both sides.

But if an agreement were not to be reached, what does the Holy See intend to do?
An agreement has to be found because we are not at loggerheads. Everybody realizes the importance and the value of the Christian presence, including the Israeli authorities. Therefore, we have to reach harmony between the different forces in the field. Recently, for example, on the question of visas, the Minister of Internal Affairs, Meir Shitrit, insisted: "We want the Christians to stay in Israel." And we replied, "Fine, very good, but if you want them to stay, then you also have to smooth out the practical difficulties they encounter." I have to say that there is real collaboration to find solutions that are satisfactory for both.

Church institutions, for the time being, do not pay taxes, from which they were exempted before the birth of the State of Israel or before Israel ruled otherwise?
Exactly. The notices of payment arrive, and we regularly send them back with a note from the Nunciature. For the time being, they [the churches] are not paying taxes thanks to the Fundamental Agreement, because this established that an agreement had to be reached on tax and economic matters. Until this is reached, there won't be any new taxes.

The Pope has said on several occasions that he would like to visit the Christians who live in Israel and Palestine. Do you think he will?
It is our hope that one day he can come and I am sure that it will be a beneficial visit for everyone. But what I am repeating continuously to our opposite numbers is that the Pope must be able to come in a relaxed atmosphere. If our Christian Catholic communities live in a situation of real difficulty and in a permanent state of tension, this makes the Pope's visit more difficult because there has to be a more serene atmosphere. Insofar as practical problems are resolved, and progress is possibly made on the Palestinian question - the fundamental problem which is at the basis of all the others - a climate is created and the foundations are laid for a journey by the Pope.

Apparently, where Jesus Christ gave his life, his vicar is afraid to go...

Hamas-Abbas: the Deadly Alliance

How much is Abbas' signature on the Annapolis Peace Agreement worth?

President Mahmoud Abbas of the Palestinian Authority said today in an interview with a Jordanian newspaper, al-Dustur, that he does not rule out the renewal of armed conflict with Israel.

Abbas was quoted as boasting about the fact that he was the one to "fire the first bullet of the resistance" back in 1965, adding it was the PLO that taught many around the world "how to resist, when resistance is most effective and when it is not."
"I had the honor to lead. We taught everyone, including Hizbollah, the ways of resistance. They were all educated in our training camps."

According to al-Dustur, Abbas does not demand that Hamas acknowledge Israel, but rather wants it to join a government which will negotiate the recognition.
Abbas also said he objects to Israel's definition as a Jewish State: "We negated the concept in the Annapolis peace conference and it almost ended because of it. They wanted us to state we recognize Israel as a Jewish State in the closing statements, but we wouldn't hear of it." (Lekarev Report)

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Israel: Barbarians at the Gate

(YNET)-Over 40 rockets were fired by Palestinian groups from the northern Gaza Strip towards Israel on Wednesday afternoon. During one of the barrages an Israeli college student was killed after a rocket landed in a parking lot adjacent to the Sapir College campus. Medics alerted to the scene also treated two more Israelis for minor wounds.

The victim, Ronnie Yechiya, 47, reportedly died shortly after sustaining massive wounds to his chest.

Yechiya, a father of four from the community of Bitcha near Ofakim, underwent a kidney transplant operation in the United States five years ago.

Something must be done!
(Video on Sderot)

Israeli student killed in Qassam attack

A Israeli college student was killed on Wednesday after a Qassam rocket landed in a parking lot near the Sapir College campus in southern Israel. Medics alerted to the scene also treated two more Israelis for minor wounds. The 30-year-old student who was killed reportedly died shortly after sustaining massive wounds to his chest.

Over 30 Qassam rockets were fired by Palestinian groups from Gaza on Wednesday afternoon, hitting a factory in an industrial zone and striking in and around the town of Sderot and other Gaza vicinity.

The last barrage included 11 rockets which were fired successively over the course of several short minutes. Hamas has claimed responsibility for the rocket attacks. (YNET)

The Hamas war against Israel claims victim

Workers survey the damage after a rocket fired by Palestinian militants in Gaza landed in a factory in the southern Israeli town of Sderot February 27, 2008. A Palestinian rocket attack from the Gaza Strip killed one person in Israel on Wednesday, the Zaka emergency service said. Crude rockets fired from the Hamas-controlled territory rarely cause fatalities in Israel and the death seemed likely to increase pressure on Prime Minister Ehud Olmert to order stronger military action in the Gaza Strip.

27 Feb 2008

An Israeli college student was killed Wednesday afternoon (27 Feb) when a Kassam rocket exploded in a parking lot near the Sapir College campus in southern Israel. Two others were lightly wounded.
A total of 22 Kassam rockets were fired by Palestinian terrorists from Gaza on Wednesday afternoon, hitting a Sderot factory cafeteria shortly after some 100 workers had left the room. Another rocket caused severe damage to a residential building in the city's Neveh Eshkol neighborhood.
Hamas has claimed responsibility for the rocket attacks. (Ynet report)
(Ministry of Foreign Affairs)

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Top Album in Gaza: Dire Straits-Brothers in Arms-Money for Nothing

Dire Straits-Brothers in Arms-Money for Nothing (What a great hit in Gaza)

News just in and I can't help remembering the Dire Straits!

The United States will provide additional aid to Palestinian refugees, including those living in the Hamas-run Gaza Strip, a senior diplomat said on Tuesday.
In January, the US government contributed 40 million dollars to the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine refugees (UNRWA), and Sam Witten, assistant secretary of state in charge of refugees, said more would be forthcoming. "We will be making additional substantial contributions in the near future," he told reporters during a visit to an UNRWA-built girls' primary school and clinic in the Jalazon refugee camp near the West Bank city of Ramallah. Much of that support will go to the more than one million refugees living in the Gaza Strip, which has been under crippling economic sanctions since the Islamist Hamas movement seized power there in June. "The United States is not abandoning the people of Gaza and our additional contribution will be of assistance to them," Witten said, adding that Washington is the largest bilateral donor to UNRWA.
UNRWA head Karen Abu Zayd, who accompanied Witten, has repeatedly called on Israel to reopen crossings into Gaza, which has been cut off from all but vital humanitarian aid for more than eight months. "You see the deterioration before your eyes ... The electricity problem, the water problem. It's cold and it's dark and the people are simply miserable," she told AFP. The United States, along with the European Union, considers Hamas a terrorist organisation, and has said mechanisms are in place to prevent aid from reaching the organisation. Last year the United States gave more than 154 million dollars to UNRWA, which provides basic services to 4.5 million Palestinian refugees, mainly in Lebanon, Syria, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.


13th IDF Chief of Staff Dan Shomron dies

Shomron, 70, passed away Tuesday at Tel-Aviv’s Sourasky Medical Center where he was hospitalized three weeks ago following a stroke. Peres: He was one of the IDF’s greatest generals.

President Shimon Peres said in eulogizing Shomron that “he was one of the greatest generals that the IDF had ever known, and a born warrior. I remember him most for his actions during the raid on Entebbe. Everyone said this operation was a fantasy that could not be actualized, but Shomron insisted that the IDF’s reach was long indeed, and that that it could be done.
(continues here)

Dan Shomron, the 13th Chief of Staff of the IDF, replaced Lieutenant General Moshe Levi. Shomron, a native of Kibbutz Ashdot Ya'akov, enlisted into Paratroopers in 1955 and took part in reprisal activities and in the "Kadesh" operation (Sinai Campaign). During the Six Day War he commanded a Paratroopers patrol force, and was the first Paratrooper to reach the Suez Canal. During the War of Attrition he commanded a Paratroopers Battalion, and during the Yom Kippur War he commanded the Armor Brigade. In 1974 he was appointed the head officer of Paratroopers and Infantry Corps in the rank of Brigadier General, and in July of 1976 he commanded the "Yonatan" operation for the rescue of Israeli hostages in Entebbe. In 1979 he was appointed Southern Command Major General. Following the signing of the peace treaty with Egypt, Shomron was responsible for the evacuation of IDF forces from Sinai. Towards the end of 1983, he established the headquarters of Field Corps, and in January 1985 he was appointed the head of Missions Branch. In October of 1986 he was appointed deputy Chief of Staff in the place of Major General Amir Drori.
(IDF website)

Auguri, Ariel Sharon

Ricorre oggi l'80mo compleanno di Ariel Sharon, ancora in stato comatoso allo Sheba Medical Center di Tel Hashomer.
Sharon e' stato ricoverato d'urgenza il 4 Gennaio 2006 in seguito ad emorragia cerebrale e da allora non si e' piu' ripreso.

Israël et un tremblement de terre de forte intensité

Le directeur du Service des urgences nationales, Zeev Tsouq-Ram, a déclaré dans la soirée de lundi qu'Israël n'était absolument pas prêt à affronter un tremblement de terre de grande envergure. Selon lui, les déficiences et le manque de préparation se situent d'abord au niveau "des autorités devant transmettre des directives en cas de séisme, et des responsables censés les faire appliquer".

Filant la métaphore musicale, il a comparé la situation à "une multitude de musiciens, et même à un orchestre au grand complet, qui seraient néanmoins privés de la direction d'un chef".

Plusieurs secousses telluriques de faible amplitude se sont produites ces derniers mois en Israël, sans faire ni victime ni dégâts, mais selon les estimations les plus fiables, une catastrophe possible pourrait causer seize mille morts, quatre vingt mille blessés, et plus de quatre cents mille sans-abri. Les services de sécurité seraient dans ce cas incapables de répondre aux demandes en soins médicaux, ravitaillement, et inhumation des victimes.
"Dans le chaos suscité par un tremblement de terre de forte intensité, il est impératif que les choses soient parfaitement réglées à l'avance et que chacun sache exactement ce qui lui incombe de faire" a également souligné Tsouq-Ram. (

Monday, February 25, 2008

Hizbullah Planning Attack On Israel In March

The Kuwaiti daily Al-Watan has quoted a report by top Western sources that, according to reliable intelligence information, Hizbullah has begun planning a large-scale attack on Israel in retaliation for its assassination of senior Hizbullah commander Imad Mughniya.

According to the report, the attack is being planned in coordination with Syria and Iran, and is to take place before the Arab summit next month.

It was also reported that there would be a simultaneous military escalation by Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and other Palestinian organizations in Gaza, with the aim of changing the priorities of the leaders of the Arab countries.

MEMRI: Source: Al-Watan, Kuwait, February 25, 2008

L'Union des écrivains palestiniens appelle au boycott

This is getting more boring by the hour!

Pour le président de l'Union des écrivains palestiniens, la présence d'Israël comme "invité d'honneur" au Salon du Livre de Paris, qui se tient du 14 au 19 mars à Paris, revient "à légitimer tous ses agissements fascistes".

Le président de l'Union des écrivains palestiniens Al-Moutawakel Taha a vivement dénoncé lundi 25 février la présence d'Israël comme "invité d'honneur" au Salon du livre de Paris qui se tient du 14 au 19 mars. Il a appelé les maisons d'édition arabes à boycotter cette manifestation.

"Légitimer les agissements fascistes"

"Nous nous sommes adressés aux maisons d'édition palestiniennes et arabes pour leur demander de boycotter ce Salon", a-t-il déclaré. "Il n'est pas digne de la France, le pays de la Révolution et des droits de l'Homme d'accueillir dans son Salon du livre un pays d'occupation raciste". Inviter Israël au Salon revient pour lui "à légitimer tous ses agissements fascistes (…) La France ne doit pas réserver un tel honneur à Israël".

Bourreaux et victimes

En effet, à l'occasion du 60e anniversaire de la création de l'Etat hébreu, en mai 1948, une quarantaine d'écrivains israéliens sont invités par les organisateurs du Salon du Livre. De leur côté, les Palestiniens commémoreront la "Nakba" (catastrophe) que fut pour eux l'émergence d'Israël sur trois quarts des territoires de la Palestine historique avant l'occupation du reste, la Cisjordanie et la bande de Gaza, en 1967.
"Nous aurions souhaité voir la France faire du Salon du livre une occasion pour marquer le 60ème anniversaire de la Nakba au lieu de prendre parti pour le bourreau aux dépens de la victime", a expliqué Al-Moutawakel Taha.
Ces derniers jours, des critiques à l'égard de l'invitation d'Israël et des menaces de boycottage de la manifestation s'étaient élevées, notamment en Egypte.
Pour sa part, le ministère français des Affaires étrangères avait défendu vendredi la présence d'Israël comme "invité d'honneur" du Salon du Livre, en relevant que les critiques émanaient de cercles "privés", mais pas à ce jour de gouvernements arabes ou d'organisations comme la Ligue arabe.

EU condemns 'uncivilised' Iranian comments on Israel

About time...

BRUSSELS, Feb 25, 2008 (AFP) — The European Union condemned "in the strongest terms" Monday remarks by President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and other Iranian officials about Israel, after the killing of a top Hezbollah commander.

"Their comments ... against Israel are unacceptable, damaging and uncivilised," a statement from the EU's Slovenian presidency said.

"The EU calls on Iran to stop hostile rhetoric and refrain from all threats towards other states, members of the international community," it said.

Last week, Ahmadinejad called Israel a "dirty microbe" and "savage animal", as Iran stepped up its rhetoric against the Jewish state after the murder of a top Hezbollah commander.

"World powers have created a black and dirty microbe named the Zionist regime and have unleashed it like a savage animal on the nations of the region," he said at a rally, in remarks broadcast on state television.

The commander of Iran's Revolutionary Guards, Mohammad Ali Jafari -- who along with Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki was also singled out by the EU -- had predicted the Lebanese Shiite militant group Hezbollah would destroy Israel.

"The EU calls again on the Iranian leadership to support the need for a two-state solution to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict and to the search for lasting peace between Israel and its neighbours," the statement said.

Israel has denied involvement in the killing in a car bombing on February 12 in Damascus of Imad Mughnieh, a top Hezbollah commander hailed by Iran as a great martyr.

From L.A. Live for Sderot

As a launch for Israel’s 60th birthday celebrations, this Tuesday (Feb. 26) there will be a benefit concert in Los Angeles for the city of Sderot which has had rockets launched at it literally every day. Paula Abdul will be hosting the benefit concert, and many celebs, including Sylvester Stallone and Jon Voight, and will also feature a performance by Ninette Tayeb.

Gaza Human Chain shows Hamas has lost its appeal

It should have been a show of force of Palestinian unity, but it turned out as a shameful defeat for Hamas.
Of the tens of thousand of Gazans expected to form a human chain from North to South, only 5,000 turned up and most of them were schoolchildren and university students.
Was it really a protest against Israel or a protest against Hamas?

By AMY TEIBEL, Associated Press Writer

NATIV HAASARA, Israel - Israel deployed thousands of troops and police along the volatile border with the Gaza Strip on Monday but a Hamas demonstration against Israel's blockade of the territory appeared to pass without incident.
Organizers had hoped to form a human chain running the length of the 25-mile strip, but turnout was well below expectations. About 5,000 people, many of them schoolchildren and university students, joined the chain outside the town of Beit Hanoun, about four miles from the border.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

La France honore Israël au Salon du Livre de Paris

Bandeau oblique en haut de la photo: "Entreprise juive ! Quiconque achète ici sera photographié." - Caricature d'un Juif dans un cercle rouge, en haut et au centre de la photo : "Quiconque achète chez des Juifs est un traître à son peuple." - Inscription dans un rectangle, à gauche de la tête du soldat allemand : "Allemands! défendez-vous contre la funeste propagande juive. Achetez seulement dans des magasins allemands!" - Ecriteau sur le côté inférieur gauche de la photo : "Allemands ! prenez-garde à vous ! N'achetez pas chez les Juifs !" - Traduction : Menahem Macina.

24 février 2008
- revue de presse

Le ministère français des Affaires étrangères défend vendredi la présence d’Israël comme " invité d’honneur" au prochain Salon du Livre de Paris, face aux critiques de milieux syndicaux littéraires arabes.

Lors d’un point de presse, la porte-parole du ministère, Pascale Andréani a dit que "chaque année il y a un pays qui est invité d’honneur" , avant de souhaiter que le prochain salon "se tienne dans de bonnes conditions" et "permette des échanges ouverts, fructueux, positifs".

En réponse à une question sur l’éventualité d’un boycott du salon par des écrivains arabes, la porte-parole a indiqué que cela serait "extrêmement regrettable". Selon elle, les critiques émanaient de cercles "privés", mais pas à ce jour de gouvernements arabes ou d’organisations comme la Ligue arabe.

Le Salon du Livre de Paris, qui se tiendra du 14 au 19 mars, a choisi cette année, à l’occasion du 60ème anniversaire de la création d’Israël, d’inviter 39 écrivains israéliens de toutes générations de Aharon Appelfeld à Etgar Keret.

Il est rapporté qu’une quinzaine de syndicats égyptiens, des écrivains aux médecins, se sont ligués jeudi contre ce choix, qualifié "d’inacceptable alors qu’Israël se livre comme jamais aux violations des droits de l’Homme". (


Hamas: la catena (dis)umana dei Palestinesi

Sderot in primo piano. Gaza in lontananza (21 Feb 2008-Menahem Kahana-AFP/Archives)

Israele ha elevato lo stato di allerta militare nella zona limitrofa a Gaza per far fronte al rischio che Hamas cerchi di forzare l'isolamento della Striscia mediante il ricorso ad una manifestazione di massa che superi i recinti, in maniera simile all'abbattimento del muro di confine con l'Egitto a Rafah il mese scorso.

Ieri Hamas ha chiesto all'opinione pubblica internazionale, in particolare nel mondo arabo, l'organizzazione di manifestazioni popolari di protesta contro l'isolamento di Gaza. Gia' venerdi' Hamas ha organizzato proteste in alcuni campi profughi della striscia di Gaza.

Fonti militari a Tel Aviv precisano che rinforzi sono gia' stati inoltrati nella zona per far fronte alla possibilita' che all'improvviso masse di palestinesi si lancino verso i reticolati di confine, sorprendendo i militari di pattuglia.

Nella zona di confine attorno a Gaza non ci sono di norma campi minati. Ogni tratto di confine e' tuttavia controllato mediante telecamere fisse. I soldati hanno ordine di fermare mediante intimazioni chiunque cerchi di infiltrarsi in Israele. Qualora cio' non bastasse, possono fare ricorso a gas lacrimogeni, a proiettili rivestiti di gomma e poi anche a munizioni vere. Ma fra i vertici militari israeliani c'e' il timore che le manifestazioni di Hamas, se dovessero avere luogo davvero, vedrebbero in prima fila donne e bambini.

"In ogni caso e' evidente che non potremmo tollerare l'ingresso in massa di palestinesi nelle nostre zone abitate" ha osservato un alto ufficiale della riserva. "Anche perche' Hamas e' solito mischiare ai civili anche terroristi".
Oggi intanto sono proseguiti i lanci di razzi Kassam da Gaza verso Israele. Nella zona di Sderot ne sono caduti cinque, senza provocare vittime. (RaiNews24)
Cliquez ici pour en savoir plus

France/ Qui adoptera Charles Gurfinkiel ?

Par Michel Gurfinkiel

Qui adoptera mon frère Charles Gurfinkiel, né à Paris le 8 décembre 1933, raflé à Paris le 16 juillet 1942, déporté à Auschwitz par le convoi numéro 21 à la date du 19 août 1942, gazé sur place dès l’arrivée, avec 816 autres personnes dont 372 enfants de moins de treize ans ? Car c’est cela qui est en jeu dans le projet que le président de la République, Nicolas Sarkozy, a évoqué mercredi dernier au cours du dîner annuel du Crif. Les élèves de CM2 seraient invités à aller à la rencontre de jeunes destins assassinés. Non pas à travers un récit abstrait, mais en passant une sorte de pacte, de personne à personne, d’individu à individu, d’enfant à enfant, avec une ombre.

Ma première réaction : de quel droit ? De quel droit dispose-t-on de la mémoire de mon frère ? Charles Gurfinkiel est devant moi tous les jours. Au sens propre. Sa photo – l’une des trois photos qui restent de lui – est sur mon bureau, en face de moi, au moment où j’écris ces lignes. Autrefois, elle était dans le petit atelier de mon père, juste en face de la machine à coudre. Un grand frère, mon aîné de quinze ans, qui est pourtant toujours un petit garçon, et le restera pour toujours. Ses yeux sont magnifiques. Son sourire, radieux. Cet enfant était aimé de ses parents, et le savait. Petit garçon, grand frère, dis-moi, de quel droit seras-tu « adopté » , au hasard d’une initiative gouvernementale ? Comme si tu n’as pas eu une famille réelle. Comme si moi, qui te regarde chaque matin et chaque soir, je n’existais pas ?

Ma seconde réaction ? Le président de la République et ses conseillers ont-ils mesuré ce qu’ils faisaient en imaginant un tel pacte ? Croient-ils que le petit enfant français de 2008 qui « adoptera » un petit Juif de France assassiné en 1942 passera ensuite, comme si de rien n’était, aux jeux vidéos ? Les forces de l’esprit existent, comme l’a confessé un autre président de la République. On peut tout envisager. Que le souvenir de Charles soit une source d’inspiration pour le petit garçon et la petite fille qui le reçoivent en héritage provisoire. Ou que l’enfant de 2008 rejette de toutes ses forces ce qui lui apparaisse comme une sorte de dibbouk, et veuille à tout prix s’en défaire.

Ma troisième réaction ? Charles, du haut de ses neuf ans, était à la fois un petit Juif exemplaire et un petit Français exemplaire. A l’automne 1940, juste après la promulgation du Statut des Juifs par le gouvernement de Vichy, il avait rossé de coups un camarade de classe qui l’avait insulté. Le directeur de l’école avait convoqué mon père : « Monsieur, je dois renvoyer votre fils pour vingt-quatre heures », avait-il commencé à lui dire, d’un air sévère. Avant d’ajouter, en lui serrant la main : « Monsieur, vous avez un brave petit gamin. C’est avec des enfants comme ça que la France, un jour, renaîtra ». A ce titre, son destin peut être, en effet, un enseignement : contre la culture de renoncement que certains voudraient imposer.

Ma quatrième et dernière réaction ? Nous verrons ce qu’il en sera du projet présidentiel, et s’il prend forme. La bonne volonté et la sincérité de Nicolas Sarkozy ne sont pas en cause. L’homme que le suffrage universel – et Dieu – ont porté à la tête de la France est un ami véritable, sincère, du peuple juif et du pays d’Israël. Si ce projet est mis en application, je m’engage à l’avance à recevoir l’enfant français inconnu qui « adopterait » Charles Gurfinkiel, 1933-1942. Que dis-je ? J’exige de le rencontrer. Je jouerai jusqu’au bout le jeu de l’histoire républicaine. Et gare aux tricheurs, quels qu’ils soient.

© Michel Gurfinkiel, 2008

Israel-Gaza: Hamas en masse

( Hamas plans to mass large numbers of Gaza residents along the border between Israel and Gaza Monday morning at 10 A.M.. According to Voice of Israel government radio, a Hamas source said the human chain will stretch from Rafiah in southern Gaza to Erez in the north.

Israel's security forces are on alert regarding the possibility that the human chain will turn into a massive stampede across the border with Israel. A security source said that there are no specific alerts and that the scenario is not a new one. The source said that Israel is concerned about the possibility that its forces will have to fire into an Arab mob that will try to storm the fence between Gaza and Israel.

The Hamas source hinted that the event could bear a similarity to the breaching of the fence with Egypt several weeks ago, but claimed that any such occurrence will be "spontaneous" and not pre-planned.

Salon du livre de Paris: boycott des éditeurs Algeriens et écrivains Européens

Le syndicat national des éditeurs de livres (SNEL) a décidé de boycotter le prochain Salon International du Livre, à Paris, pour dénoncer sa transformation en manifestation de soutien à la politique d’Israël, rapporte Le Soir d'Algérie.
C’est à l’unanimité que les éditeurs algériens ont décidé de suspendre leur participation au Salon international du livre de Paris, prévu du 14 au 19 mars prochain. La raison invoquée est le choix de l’invité d’honneur de cette édition, qui n'est autre que l'Etat d'Israël.

Le Syndicat national des éditeurs de livres (SNEL) qui s’est réuni en assemblée générale extraordinaire, le 13 février dernier, s’est refusé à soutenir la dérive idéologique de ce grand espace interculturel.
Parce que c’est au détriment de la nation palestinienne, tyrannisée au quotidien par les sionistes, que la France compte célébrer les soixante ans de la création d’Israël.

Une vive polémique se déroule en ce moment en Italie autour de la Foire du livre qui doit avoir lieu à Turin, du 8 au 12 mai prochain, et qui est consacré à la célébration de la fondation de l'Etat d'Israël. Des partis politiques aux personnalités en passant par les associations militantes pour les droits fondamentaux des Palestiniens, un vif mouvement de protestation s’est déclenché afin que le comité d’organisation renonce à célébrer un Etat qui ne respecte pas le minimum des droits humains et opprime sans répit le peuple palestinien.
Face au refus opposé par les organisateurs, des auteurs et écrivains italiens ont décidé de boycotter la manifestation, parmi lesquels, l'écrivain philosophe Gianni Vattimo (Université de Turin), ancien élu au Parlement européen, qui a expliquea au quotidien italien La Stampa, pourquoi il boycottera le le prochain Salon du Livre à Turin.

Un boycott qui va s'élargissant

"Je me joins au boycott du Salon du Livre en France", vient d' annoncer l'écrivain britannique John Berger après avoir appris que l’Etat d’Israël était son invité d’honneur. Romancier, peintre, critique d’art et scénariste, le lauréat du prix Booker est un homme de principes. Toujours aussi actif, ce n’est pas à 80 ans qu’on risque de lui faire avaler des couleuvres.
En Israël, l’écrivain israélien Benny Ziffer, responsable des pages littéraires du quotidien Haaretz, a appellé, le 15 février, au boycott de l’entreprise de propagande montée par les gouvernements israélien et français à l’occasion de la prochaine édition du Salon du Livre de Paris.
Dans une déclaration au journal Libération, Benny Ziffer trouve "indécent que des écrivains israéliens viennent à Paris recevoir des honneurs pendant que des mères palestiniennes restent coincées dans le froid aux check-points."
Agé de 55 ans, Benny Ziffer n’usurpe pas, lui, l’appellation d’intellectuel engagé, et pas seulement par sa plume. Il a ainsi fait partie, avec sa fille, de la petite cohorte de militants israéliens qui ont mené, aux côtés de la population palestinienne et d’autres militants internationaux, à la campagne contre le Mur d’annexion à Bi’lin (Cisjordanie), où il a d’ailleurs été légèrement blessé par le tir des soldats.

Source le Soir d'Algérie, cajpo-euroPalestine

Voire aussi sur le site:
Call to Boycott Israel at the Paris Book Fair
Boycottage d’Israël au Salon du livre de Paris?

Boicottaggio d'Israele alla Fiera del Libro di Parigi

Brainwashed Iranians

تجمع دانشجويي دانشگاه‌هاي تهران درباره رخدادهاي غزه در مقابل دفتر سازمان مل

They even lined up to sign the "I'm ready to be sacrificed for the holy aims of "qods" petition. (ISNA)
Qods is the battle for Israel (Palestine).

The message is clear: "Palestine is to gain victory-Israel is to vanish"

Elbaradei: a good Iranian

Iran Says Elbaradei's Report Will Clear Them of Nuclear Charges

Iran claims that UN nuclear watchdog agency chief will clear the regime with his report that is due out in hours.
The Iranian Fars News reported:
The UN nuclear watchdog agency chief will, thus, announce the end of IAEA's four-year-long probe into Iran's case, the diplomats said, adding, "ElBaradei will likely announce that according to the survey findings, Iran's nuclear activities have been peaceful, and thus, the country's case should be normalized."

After four years of allegations by the US-led West about the non-peaceful nature of Iran's nuclear activities and after a long-time ploy by the western countries that the IAEA has not been able to wrap up a probe into the nature of Iran's nuclear programs, the report to be presented by ElBaradei within hours seems to play a decisive role in annulling west's claims about Iran's nuclear drive.
Fars News obtained a copy of Elbaradei's report on Iran. It is posted in full HERE.

Earlier this week on Wednesday an Iranian dissident group charged that the regime was still developing nuclear warheads.

Meanwhile... Spiegel Online reported that Iran will have enough uranium for a bomb by year's end.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

US will back new Iran sanctions

The US wants a new resolution on Iran agreed 'with some dispatch'

US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has said there is a "very strong case" for a third round of sanctions on Iran over its disputed programme.

She spoke as the UN nuclear agency said it could offer no "credible assurances" that Iran was not building a bomb.

UN Security Council members the US, UK, China, France and Russia meet on Monday in Washington to mull their next step.
But Iran's top nuclear negotiator said the UN report backed Tehran's claim its nuclear programme was peaceful.

Tehran refuses to stop enriching uranium, insisting its work is aimed purely at generating electricity.

Travel bans

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) report did praise Iran for granting its inspectors access to previously off-limits sites, but said it remained evasive on key issues.

Tehran says its nuclear programme is for civilian purposes

The nuclear watchdog struck a deal last August with Iran on a timetable to resolve questions over aspects of its past nuclear activities.

But Friday's report said Tehran had evaded a proper response to claims it had made secret efforts to "weaponise" nuclear material.

It had also ducked questions about alleged high explosives testing and design work on a missile warhead, the IAEA found, noting: "This is a matter of serious concern."

Iran was also still openly enriching uranium in defiance of UN resolutions and testing advanced centrifuges to speed up the process, said the inspectors.

The US secretary of state said: "This report demonstrates that whatever the Iranians may be doing to try to clean up some elements of the past, it is inadequate given their current activities.

"What we all have to worry about... is the future in which Iran could start to perfect the technologies that could lead to a nuclear weapon."

Iran's chief nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili told reporters: "This report showed that our activities are peaceful."

Iran's key nuclear sites

But BBC diplomatic correspondent Jonathan Marcus says the IAEA findings are definitely not a clean bill of health.

On Thursday, Britain and France introduced a UN Security Council resolution - a draft of which was approved last month - with support from the US, Russia, China and Germany.

It seeks to expand the number of Iranian companies targeted by sanctions and impose travel bans on certain Iranian officials.

A declassified US intelligence report last December judged that the Iranians had put a nuclear weapons program on hold in 2003. But the US, Israel and others contend Iran's continued advances in the crucial centrifuge work will eventually give it a capability to build a bomb.

Holocaust Nintendo DS Game

Luc Bernard, the mind behind the upcoming Wii-Ware title Eternity's Child, is already hard at work on a new and what is sure to be a very controversial game on the DS. Imagination Is The Only Escape is the story of a young Jewish boy living in France during the occupation by the Nazis in World War II. In order to escape the horrors around him, he imagines a fantasy land that becomes the basis of the game's world. The adventure platformer will attempt to educate players on the atrocities experienced by many children during the time of the Holocaust.

Mr. Bernard has sent Kotaku three initial screen shots from the game that he insists will probably be censored down the road for their use of Nazi symbolism.

From Luc Bernard's blog:
"Yes the press release isn't even out, but well we got into trouble, you see the nazi symbol is not allowed, and also you can't mention alot of things in games... but you can in films... weird huh?

I mean this game is the occupation of France from the eyes of a child, who escapes the horrors of the real world with his imagination. Yep no holocaust scenes or anything like that, but yet, why can't games talk about important subjects?

Oh well there will still be a press release next week"

Ayatollah Khamenei on Mughniyeh and Israel

Ayatollah Khamenei commemorated the memory of the senior Lebanese warrior Hajj Imad Mughniyeh, saying that the mottoes of the Islamic Revolution provided a source of honor to many Muslim, including the assassinated Hezbollah commander.

"Martyr Hajj Imad Mughniyeh who died a martyr at the hands of the Zionists considered himself as descendant of Imam Khomeini and felt pride because Imam revived him and other Lebanese and Palestinian youths and imbued them with a new spirit," Ayatollah Khamenei said.

Ayatollah Khamenei viewed the disgraceful defeat of the Zionist regime and America against a few faithful, lightly-armed young Lebanese men in the Sumer 2006 war as the fruit of the Islamic Revolution and the movement of Imam Khomeini.

"The Lebanese youths tore apart the myth of invincibility of the Zionist regime and America by reliance on God and renouncing fear of death," the Islamic Revolution Leader affirmed.
(The Office of the Supreme Leader)

Jumblat Slams 'Crazy' Ahmadinejad

Druze leader Walid Jumblat has told a British daily that Damascus viewed Lebanon as just a province of Syria and that "crazy" Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was trying to establish a Hizbullah state in the country.
"For Syria, Lebanon is just a province, part of Syria. As for the crazy Iranian Ahmadinejad, Lebanon is a platform to be used against the Israelis and the Americans and he is trying slowly but surely to establish his Hizbullah state in Lebanon. Lebanon is paralyzed ... we won't have stability and peace in Lebanon as long as these bloody butchers are there," Jumblat told The Guardian newspaper in remarks published Thursday.

He said that Hizbullah had helped the Assad regime to carry out assassinations, attempted killings and bombings in Lebanon since Oct. 2004.

"Hizbullah has a formidable security infrastructure and the Syrians couldn't have done all their bloody murders without the facilities offered by Hizbullah and other allies of Syria," he insisted. "All the people who were killed were opponents of the Syrian regime and key figures in the military."

He accused Hizbullah of following Iran's and Syria's orders to paralyze Lebanese life.

"We have a party that is run by remote control by the Iranians and the Syrians, that is very well armed and trained and is paralyzing the whole of life and is not willing to accept the rule of the Lebanese state," Jumblat told the Guardian.

"They are part of the parliament but they want to impose their will to declare war and peace whenever they feel like it. They are using Lebanon as a platform for their own advantage," he said.

President Bashar Assad, Jumblat charged, would "do anything" to sabotage the Special Tribunal for Lebanon that would try suspects in ex-Premier Rafik Hariri's assassination and related crimes.

The Progressive Socialist Party leader also said the Assad regime was allowing Hizbullah to smuggle rockets into Lebanon.

"Lebanon is in an existential crisis," Jumblat concluded. "Either we survive as an independent state and a democracy or we disappear under the killings of the Syrians and the Iranians and their allies. Up to now I've been able to survive, but at a price."

Nasrallah told off

Lebanese Forces leader Samir Geagea, in a swift reaction on Friday, told Hizbullah leader Hassan Nasrallah "you have no right to take us against our will to where we don't want to go" and challenged him to accept a TV debate to allow "the lebanese, the Arabs and the whole world judge" us.
Geagea was reacting to Nasrallah's insistence that he has the right to set the time and place of war by proclaiming it our "national right."

Nasrallah, in an address to a rally commemorating Hizbullah's Imad Mughniyeh a few hours earlier, had attacked the international tribunal saying its prosecutor is in Meerab, in reference to Geagea's residence northeast of Beirut.

Geagea responded by addressing Nasrallah: "The prosecutor of the international tribunal remains better than your Addoum," in reference to ex-prosecutor general Adnan Addoum who held the post prior to withdrawal of Syria's Army from Lebanon in April 2005.

Addresing Nasrallah, Geagea said: "remember the downfall of the whole Soviet Union and look at the developments in Palestine, so far. We are against this logic and you have no right, Sayyed, to take us against our will to where we don't want to go."

Arab leaders warn Israel over belligerency

Arab leaders said that Israel is sabotaging the Middle East peace process and warned they could withdraw their landmark offer of peace with Israel in exchange for a return of Arab lands, unless Israel explicitly accepts the initiative.
The warnings reflect increasing Arab impatience with the long-stalled peace process with Israel. Peace negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians have bogged down since they were relaunched at the US-sponsored Annapolis peace conference last November after a seven-year hiatus.
Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Saud al-Faisal
- whose country sponsored the Arab peace initiative, adopted by Arab nations in 2002 - warned Thursday that "despair would force us to review these options" including withdrawing the proposal. He accused Israel of "sabotaging" the initiative. The Arab plan calls for complete withdrawal from the lands Israel captured in the 1967 Middle East war, and establishment of an independent Palestinian state with Quds as its capital. It also calls for Palestinian refugees' right of return to their homes in Israel to be addressed. Israel has lingered on full withdrawal called for in the plan. Arab leaders are to hold a summit in March in the Syrian capital, Damascus, at which they are expected to reiterate their adherence to the peace plan. But ahead of the gathering, they have stepped up their warnings it could be rescinded.
Israeli-Palestinian peace talks have been marred by ongoing Israeli construction in the West Bank and East Quds, areas the Palestinians want for their future state. Saud, whose country is a close US ally, blamed Israel during a gathering of South American-Arab foreign ministers in Argentina on Thursday. "It's unbelievable that we keep blaming the weak party in the equation, which is the Palestinian people, with all the suffering they live under, while ignoring what Israel does by expanding settlements, tightening the siege, humiliating the Palestinians and carrying out a mass punishment against them," al-Faisal said. (IRNA)

Friday, February 22, 2008

La Turchia e l'Europa

Leggo da qualche parte che la Turchia vorrebbe entrare nell'Unione Europea.
Forse e' un po' prematuro perfino parlarne.
Sul banner del sito islamico turco, Kudus Yolu, si legge: "Il Martirio e' una Chiamata per tutte le generazioni ed per qualsiasi momento".