domingo, 14 de julho de 2019

Reality check on Genocide: Deir Yassin, Jenin, Srebrenica, Gaza...


July 11 marks the 24th anniversary of the Srebrenica genocide, the worst atrocity on European soil since the Holocaust.
In July, 1995, Serb forces systematically killed more than 8,000 Bosniak men and boys in the so-called  UN-protected enclave in Srebrenica, Bosnia.
But what led to the massacre?
In the nineties, genocide scholar Gregory H Stanton examined the stages of genocide, which eventually became his "10 stages of genocide" theory.
According to him, at each stage preventive measures can stop the situation from deteriorating further. Bosnian-Australian anthropologist Hariz Halilovic later added an eleventh stage particular to Bosnia's and Palestine's cases - "triumphalism".
Here is how Stanton's 10 stages - and Halilovic's eleventh - relate to the Palestinian genocide:
Stages 1, 2, 3: Classification, symbolization and discrimination - The idea of a Great ewish state including all the historical Palestine and beyond - parcels of neighbouring countries Lebanon, Syria and Egypt dates back to the beginning of the 20th century. Stage 4: Dehumanisation - The Zionists dehumanised the Palestinians, regarding them as little more than primitives Christians and Muslims who posed a threat to their Jewish hegemonist project.
Stage 5: Organisation - The Zionist project was drawn up in order to steal Palestine through dispossession, colonization, expulsion and eventually extermination of the native people as early as the lobby tied up its plan with the support of strong members of the British government, which culminated with the Balfour Declaration in 1917.
Stage 6: Polarisation - Yishuv (Jewish immigrants) began to regularly spread polarising propaganda, to dehumanise victims and marginalise the international opposition to the colonisation and eventual occupation of Palestine.
Stage 7: Preparation - Organised from Tel Aviv with the support of the Zionist lobby yishuv militias were created and trained,  weapons were distributed to the yishuv population with the pretext for the arms deliveries and the rearmament that this was necessary for the defence against 'the natives' hostility' to foreign invasion.
Stage 8: Persecution - Across Palestine's major cities - Jerusalem, Haifa, Nablus, influential leaders, intellectual Palestinians were among the first to be imprisoned, expelled or executed, with their names drawn up in death lists.
Stage 9: Extermination - the Nakba in 1948.
Stage 10: Denial - In an attempt to conceal the killings, the Zionist militia groups buried the dead bodies in mass graves. The genocide is vehemently denied by Israeli politicians and the Zionist lobby. Israeli historian Benny Morris is known for his uncovering of some of Israel’s darkest secrets from the Nakba and later. He has just mentioned in detail in Hagar Shezaf’s staggering investigative report in Haaretz titled “Burying the Nakba: How Israel Systematically Hides Evidence of 1948 Expulsion of Arabs”. The piece uncovered a secret yet systematic operation by an Israeli Defense Ministry department, causing critical Nakba archives to disappear from the public eye – archives that had already been cited since the late 1980’s by historians such as Benny Morris.
"[Denial] is among the surest indicators of further genocidal massacres," Stanton wrote. 
Stage 11: Triumphalism - All Yishuv and Israeli war criminals today are respected and honoured as heroes. Including Ariel Sharon, whose crimes are still fresh in everyone's memory.
To make sure Zionist and Israeli crimes and the criminals won't be forgotten, here goes a short reminder of their massacres and of their conquest.

If you look over Israel’s history, you find that the massacre has been a ready tool in the Israeli war-chest; and Israelis have not been prosecuted for carrying them out. Indeed, a couple of those responsible later became prime minister.
Here, largely from my own memory, is a rapidly-assembled list of massacres, defined by Webster’s as the killing of a “number of usually helpless or unresisting human beings under circumstances of atrocity or cruelty” (and yes, a couple precede the birth of the state).
1946. Zionist militias blow up the south wing of the King David Hotel, killing 91 people, most of them civilians, in order to protest British rule of Palestine.
1948. Zionist militias kill over 100 civilians in the village of Deir Yassin, which is on the road to Jerusalem. The action helps clear the road for the military advance on Jerusalem and scares thousands of other Palestinians who flee their villages. The name Deir Yassin becomes a rallying cry for Palestinians for decades to come though no one is punished. An officer with responsibility for the massacre, Menachem Begin, became Israeli prime minister 29 years later.
1948. During the expulsion of Palestinians from the central Israeli city of Lydda, more than 100 men are rounded up and held in a mosque and later massacred (according to Reja-e Busailah’s new book and others). The episode terrifies thousands of other Palestinians who seek refuge in the West Bank.
1948. Hundreds of Palestinian civilians are killed by Israeli forces in Al Dawayima village, west of Hebron. Many are killed in barbarous manner; the crime is swept under the rug for décades.
1953. Israeli troops led by Ariel Sharon raid the village of Qibya in the Jordanian-occupied West Bank and kill 69 people, most of them women and children, in retaliation for a cross-border raid that killed three Israelis. (The massacre is memorialized in Nathan Englander’s latest novel as one that solidifies Sharon’s reputation as an officer who will exact swift and awful revenge on those who harm Jews, thereby assuring his rise.)
1956. Israeli forces gun down farmers in Kfar Qasim returning from the fields who are unaware that the village had been placed under a strict curfew by the Israeli government earlier that day. Forty-eight Palestinian citizens of Israel are killed, many women and children.
1956. Israeli forces kill 275 Palestinians in Gaza in the midst of the Suez Crisis. The massacre is documented by Joe Sacco in Footnotes in Gaza.
1967. Israeli forces are said to have killed scores of Egyptian army prisoners in the Sinai during the 1967 War. Some say 100s.
1970. Israel killed 46 Egyptian children and wounded 50 others during an air raid on a primary school in the village of Bahr el-Baqar, Egypt. Known as the Bahr el-Baqar Massacre, the assault completely destroyed the school and was part of the Priha (Blossoms) Operations during the War of Attrition.
1982. The Sabra and Shatilla massacres of Palestinians in Beirut refugee camps are carried out by Lebanese Phalangist militias. But the Israel Defense Forces had control of the area and Ariel Sharon allows the militias to go into the camps. Somewhere between several hundred and 3000 Palestinians are murdered. Sharon, who died in 2014, escaped punishment for war crimes; in fact, he became an Israeli prime minister.
1996. The first Qana massacre takes place when Israeli missiles strike a UN compound in southern Lebanon where many civilians have gathered seeking refuge during clashes between Israel and Hezbollah. Over 100 civilians are killed. “Israel was universally condemned, and the United States intervened to extricate its ally from the quagmire,” Avi Shlaim writes in The Iron Wall.
2006. The second Qana massacre takes places during the Lebanon invasion when Israeli missiles strike a building in a village outside Qana, killing 36 civilians, including 16 children. The strike is initially defended as a response to the firing of Katyusha rockets at Israel from civilian areas.
2008-2009. During Cast Lead, the Israeli assault on Gaza following exchanges of rocket/missile attacks in months before, more than 1400 Palestinians are killed over 22 days, most of them civilians. Many die as at Qana, when they flee their homes to UN compounds and schools, hoping to be safe. The massacre brings international condemnation, including by the Goldstone Report to the UN Human Rights Council alleging war crimes; but the United States does its utmost under President Obama to defend Israel from all charges, and no one is brought to the bar.
2012.  During eight days of “Pillar of Clouds,” Israel kills 160 Palestinians in Gaza, most of them civilians. The offensive boosts Netanyahu in the polls and seems timed to torpedo Palestine’s historic UN bid for statehood.
2014. Another Israeli onslaught on Gaza, this one lasting 51 days, kills upwards of 2200 Palestinians, most of them civilians. The massacre is famous for sniper killings of unarmed people and for the killings of entire families, 89 according to some authorities, typically wiped out in their homes by a missile strike. In one instance, 20 members of one family are killed. The international condemnation is again toothless.



The shameful result of the "creation" of Israel is that Palestinians then and today have almost no rights at all, including being able to live in peace and security on their own land in their own state that no longer exists.  Survivors then and their offspring either live in Israel as unwanted natives Arabs citizens with few rights or in the Occupied Palestinians Territories (OPT) where their lives are suspended in limbo in an occupied country in which they’re subjected to daily institutionalized and codified racism and persecution.  They have no power over their daily lives and live in a constant state of fear with good reason.  They face economic strangulation; collective punishment for any reason; loss of free movement; enclosures by separation walls, electric fences and border closings; regular curfews, roadblocks, checkpoints, loss of their homes by bulldozings and crops and orchards by wanton destruction and seizure; arrest without cause, and routine subjection to torture while in custody. 
They’re targeted for extra-judicial assassination and indiscriminate killing; taxed punitively and denied basic services essential to life and well-being including health care, education, employment and even enough food and water at the whim of Israeli authorities in a deliberate effort to destroy their will to resist and eliminate those who won’t by expulsion or extermination.  Palestinians have no power to end these appalling abuses and crimes against humanity or receive any redress for them in Israeli, the West or through the International Criminal Court Israel ignores when it rules against its interests.
How can they as Christians and Muslims in a racist Jewish state where Israelis oppressive them with impunity, the US goes along with huge financing and supplying of the most modern and destructive weapons of war, and the West and most Arab states are indifferent preferring to ally with Israel and the US for benefits received while writing off Palestinians as a small price worth paying.  It created state of appalling human misery and desperation severely aggravated by crushing economic sanctions for the past year imposed for the first time ever on an occupied people.  They’re responsible for poverty and unemployment levels of 80% or more and increasing instances of starvation and unreported deaths from all causes because Israel controls everything and everyone allowed in and out of the territories.  Those inside them suffer painfully as a result.  Others with power to help, don’t care and do Nothing.
Here we go with the three first stages of genocide: Symbolization, Discrimination and classification.
The genocide was planned abroad and in the "Red House" in Tel-Aviv, which became headquarters for the Hagana, the dominant Zionist underground paramilitary militia during the British Mandate period in Palestine between 1920 and 1948 when the Jewish state came into being.  He details how David Ben-Gurion, Israel’s first prime minister, met with leading Zionists and young Jewish military officers on March 10, 1948 to finalize plans to ethnically cleanse Palestine that unfolded in the months that followed including large-scale intimidation; laying siege to and bombarding villages and population centres; setting fire to homes, properties and goods; expulsion; demolition; and finally, planting mines among the rubble to prevent any of the expelled inhabitants from returning.
The final master plan was called Plan D (Dalet in Hebrew) following plans A, B, and C preceding it.  It was  to be a war without mercy complying with what Ben-Gurion said in June, 1938 to the Jewish Agency Executive and never wavering from later: "I am for compulsory transfer; I do not see anything immoral in it."  Plan D became the way to do it.  It included forcible expulsion of hundreds of thousands of unwanted Palestinian Arabs in urban and rural areas accompanied by an unknown number of others mass slaughtered to get it done.  The goal was simple and straightforward – to create an exclusive Jewish state without an Arab presence by any means including mass-murder.
Once begun, the whole ugly business took six months to complete.  It expelled about 800,000 people, killed many others, and destroyed 531 villages and 11 urban neighborhoods in cities like Tel-Aviv, Haifa and Jerusalem.  The action was a clear case of ethnic cleansing that international law today calls a crime against humanity for which convicted Nazis at Nuremberg were hanged.  So far Israelis have always remained immune from international law even though names of guilty leaders and those charged with implementing their orders are known as well as the crimes they committed. 
They included cold-blooded mass-murder; destruction of homes, villages and crops; rapes; other atrocities; and massacres of defenseless people given no quarter including women and children.  Than came the denial. The crimes were suppressed and expunged from official accounts as Israeli historiography cooked up the myth that Palestinians left voluntarily fearing harm from invading Arab armies.  It was a lie covering up Israeli crimes Palestinians call the Nakba – the catastrophe or disaster that’s still a cold, harsh festering unresolved injustice.
Even with British armed presence still in charge of law and order before its Mandate ended, Zionist forces completed the expulsion of about 250,000 Palestinians the Brits did nothing to stop.  It continued unabated because when neighboring Arab states finally intervened, they did so without conviction.  They came belatedly and with only small, ill-equipped forces, no match for a superior, well-armed Israeli military easily able to prevail as discussed below.
Ethnic cleansing is well-defined in international law that calls it a crime against humanity.  The Hutchinson encyclopedia says it is expulsion by force to homogenize the population.  The US State Department concurs adding its essence is to eradicate a region’s history.  The United Nations used a similar definition in 1993 when the UN Commission on Human Rights (UNCHR) characterized it as the desire of a state or regime to impose ethnic rule on a mixed area using expulsion and other violence including separating men and women, detentions, murder of males of all ages who might become combatants, destruction of houses, and repopulating areas with another ethnic group. 
In 1948, Zionists waged their "War of Independence" using Plan D to "cleanse" (the word was actually used) Palestine according to the UN definition.  It involved cold-blooded massacres and indiscriminate killing, targeted assassinations and widespread destruction as clear instances of crimes of war and against humanity, later expunged from the country’s official history and erased from its collective memory.  It was left it to a few courageous historians like Ilan Pappe and Norman Finkelstein to resurrect events to preserve the truth too important to let die.  
The roots of Zionism can be traced to the late 1880s in Central and Eastern Europe. Founded by Theodor Herzl, the genocidal movement became international in scope supporting a Jewish homeland in the Land of Israel, or Eretz Israel, even though early on many in the movement were ambivalent about its location.  That changed following Herzl’s death in 1904 when it was decided the goal was to colonize Palestine because of its biblical connection that happened to be land occupied inappropriately by "strangers" meaning anyone not Jewish having "no right" to be there. 
So as justification, the myth was created of "a land without people for a people without a land" even though this "empty land" had a flourishing Palestinian population. Zionist leaders wanted a complete dispossession of indigenous Palestinians to "reestablish" the ancient land of Eretz Israel as a Jewish state for Jews alone and got help doing it from the British after Palestine became part of its empire post-WW I.  With duplicity, the Brits crafted the 1917 Balfour Declaration supporting the notion of a Jewish homeland in Palestine while simultaneously promising indigenous Christians and Muslins Arabs their rights would be protected and land would be freed from foreign rule.
Palestinians saw through the scheme wanting no part of it.  It was their land, and they weren’t about to give it up without a struggle.  They strongly opposed further Jewish immigration but to no avail, as their wishes conflicted with British plans for the territory. It set off decades of conflict leading to the establishment of the Jewish state in 1948 with British help under their Mandate and neighboring Arab state indifference doing little to prevent it.  Palestinians lost their homeland, their struggle for justice goes on unresolved, and these beleaguered people are virtually isolated from the West and their Arab neighbors preferring alliance with Israel for their own interests that exclude helping Palestinian people get theirs served including a viable independent state free from Israeli occupation.
At the early post-Balfour history Palestinians comprised 90% of the population.  The fourth stage of nenocide was clear. Even then they fared poorly under British Mandate rule giving Zionist settlers - Yishuv - preferential treatment over the deshumanized natives.  It led to uprisings in 1929 and 1936, the later one lasting three years before being brutally suppressed.  In its wake, Britain expelled Palestinian leaders making their people vulnerable to Jewish forces post-WW II that led to their defeat and subjugation.  The sympathetic British Mandate made it possible by helping the Yishuv to reach the fifith level of genocide - organization. Besides a parallel government, the British enabled the Yishuv to transform their 1920 paramilitary organization into the Hagana, a name meaning defense.  It then became the military arm of the Jewish Agency or Zionist governing body now called the Israel Defense Forces or IDF. With the militia came a secret service, and with it, the polarization.
David Ben-Gurion, Israel’s first prime minister, led the Zionist movement from the mid-1920s until well into the 1960s.  He played a central role and had supreme authority planning the establishment of a Jewish state serving as its "architect" with full control over all security and defense issues in the Jewish community.  His goal was Jewish sovereignty over as much of ancient Palestine as possible achieved the only way he thought possible – by forceable removable of Palestinians from their land so Jews could be resettled in it.
To do it, he and other Zionist leaders needed a systematic plan to "cleanse" the land for Jewish habitation only.  The stage six of genocide began with a detailed registry or inventory of Palestinian villages the Jewish National Fund (JNF) was assigned to compile. The JNF was founded in 1901 as the main Zionist tool for the colonization of Palestine.  Its purpose was to buy land used to settle Jewish immigrants that by the end of the British Mandate in 1948 amounted to 5.8% of Palestine or a small fraction of what Zionists wanted for a Jewish state.  Early on, Ben-Gurion and others knew a more aggressive approach was needed for their colonization and ethnic cleansing plan to succeed.
It began with the JNF Arab village inventory that was a blueprint completed by the late 1930s that included the topographic location of each village with detailed information including husbandry, cultivated land, number of trees, quality of fruit, average amount of land per family, number of cars, shop owners, Palestinian clans and their political affiliation, descriptions of village mosques and names of their imams, civil servants and more.  
The preparation, stage seven of genocide, ended when the final inventory update was finished in 1947. Then came stage 8, the persecution. Lists of "wanted" persons were made in each village targeted in 1948 for search-and-arrest operations with those seized summarily shot on the spot in cold blood. 
The idea was simple – kill the leaders and anyone thought to be a threat the British hadn’t already eliminated quelling the 1936-39 uprising.  It created a power vacuum neutralizing any effective opposition to Zionists’ plans. The only remaining obstacle thereafter was the British presence Ben-Gurion knew was on the way out by 1946 before it finally ended in May, 1948.
Then came stage 8 - extermination. The ethnic cleansing began in early December, 1947 when Palestinians comprised two-thirds of the population and Jews, mostly from war-torn Europe, the other third.  The British tried dealing with two distinct ethnic entities  choosing partition as the way to do it.  By 1937, this solution became the centerpiece of Zionist policy, but it proved too hard for the Brits to resolve and be able to satisfy both sides.  It instead handed the problem to the newly formed UN to deal with before their Mandate ended.
It put the Palestinians’ fate in the hands of a Special Committee for Palestine (UNSCOP) whose members had no prior experience solving conflicts and knew little Palestinian history.  It was a recipe for disaster as events unfolded.  UNSCOP opted for partition favoring the Jews as compensation for the Nazi holocaust that became General Assembly Resolution 181 on November 29, 1947 giving them a state encompassing 56% the country with one-third of the population while making Jerusalem an international city.  Palestinians were justifiably outraged.  They were excluded from the decision-making process concluded against their will and at their expense. 
From that moment on, the die was cast leading to partition, ethnic cleansing, the first Arab-Israeli war, the others to follow, and decades of disregard for their rights  to this day creating their desperate state with no resolution in prospect.  Resolution 181 was even worse than an unfair 56 – 44% division of territory as it allotted the most fertile land and almost all urban and rural territory in Palestine to the new Jewish state plus 400 of the over 1000 Palestinian villages their residents lost with no right of appeal. 
Ben-Gurion simultaneously accepted and rejected the resolution.  He and other Zionist leaders wanted official international recognition of the right of Jews to have their own state in Palestine.  He was also determined to make Jerusalem the Jewish capital, intended final borders to remain flexible wanting to include within them as much future territory as possible, and today Israel is the only country in the world without established borders.  Ben-Gurion decided borders would "be determined by force and not by partition resolution."  He headed the Consultancy or Consultant Committee, an ad-hoc cabal of Zionist leaders created solely to plan the expulsion of  Palestinians to cleanse the land for Jewish habitation only.
The process began in early December, 1947 with a series of attacks against Palestinian villages and neighborhoods.  They were engaged ineffectively from the start on January 9 by units of the first all-Arab volunteer army.  It resulted in forced expulsions beginning in mid-February, 1948.  On March 10, final Plan Dalet was adopted with its first targets being Palestinian urban centers that were all occupied by end of April with about 250,000 Palestinians uprooted, displaced or killed including by massacres, the most notorious and remembered being at Deir Yassin even though Tantura may have been the largest.
The massacre in Deir Yassin was the warning, on April 9. Yishuv militia burst into the village, machine-gunned houses randomly killing many in them.  The remaining villagers were then assembled in one place and murdered in cold blood including children and women first raped and then killed.  Recent research puts the number massacred at 93 (including 30 babies), but dozens more were killed in the fighting that ensued making the total number of deaths much higher.
The Arab League finally decided on April 30 to intervene militarily but only after the British Mandate ended on May 15, 1948, the day the Jewish Agency declared the establishment of the state of Israel in Palestine.  The US and Soviet Union officially recognized the new state legitimizing it, and on the same day Arab forces entered the territory.
One Zionist crime leading to another, many steps followed to gain as much of Palestine as possible with the fewest number of Palestinians remaining in it, irrespective of Resolution 181 it ignored.  They wanted  over 80% of Mandatory Palestine, that is, over 40% more land than the UN allotted them taken forcibly from the Palestinians. To get it, they colluded tacitly with the Jordanians, effectively neutralizing the strongest Arab army, buying them off with the remaining 20% of the territory.
The Zionist army counted around 80,000 Yishuv and a few mercenaries.  They included a small air force, navy and units of tanks, armored cars and heavy artillery.  The army was comprised of the main Hagana force plus elements of the two extremist terrorist groups – the Irgun led by future prime minister and fanatical Arab-hater Menachem Begin and the Stern Gang whose most notorious member was also a future prime minister, Yitzhak Shamir, another extreme racist.  It also included special commando Palmach units, founded in 1941 and whose leaders included future Israeli prime minister Yitzhak Rabin and noted general and war hero Moshe Dayan. They faced a hopelessly outmanned and outgunned Palestinian irregular force of about 7000.
Outside Arab intervention only began on May 15, 1948, five and a half months after UN Resolution 181 was adopted and during which time the Palestinians were defenseless against the Zionist ethnic cleansing onslaught against them.  Arab states waited because they were indifferent, and when they finally acted they sent an inferior force proving no match for the superior Zionist one it faced.
In December, 1947, the Palestinian population numbered 1.3 million of which one million lived in the territory of the future Jewish state.  The Yishuv minority stood at lower than half.  Zionist leaders needed a way to dispose of this large number of people "cleansing" the land for Jewish habitation only.  They weren’t planning to do it gently.  Instead it became a systematic campaign of state-sponsored terror against a near-defenseless population unable to withstand the horrific onslaught unleashed against it step by step.  It included threats and intimidation, villages attacked including while its inhabitants slept, shooting anything that moved, and blowing up homes with their residents inside plus other violent acts sparing no one, especially fighting-age men and boys who might pose a combat or determined resistance threat.
Ben-Gurion exulted in the progress as events unfolded with comments like: "We are told the army had the ability of destroying a whole village and taking out all its inhabitants, let’s do it."  Another time he explained: "Every attack has to end with occupation, destruction and expulsion."  He meant the entire population of a village had to be removed, everything in it leveled to the ground and its history destroyed.  In its place, a new Jewish community would be established as part of the new Jewish state he and others in the Consultancy believed wasn’t possible without a mass ethnic cleansing transfer and/or extermination of Palestinians  living there. 
Their plan also included cleansing urban neighborhoods that were attacked beginning with Haifa picked as the first target.  It was where 75,000 Palestinians lived in peace and solidarity with their Jewish neighbors until it ended with the outbreak of the massacres. The Palestinians were killed or forced out to other cities including Jerusalem where initial sporadic attacks later became intense. It was part of an overall initiative of occupation, expulsion and slaughter of anyone resisting or just having the misfortune to live on land Zionists wanted for themselves and intended taking by force.
As ethnic cleansing progressed, it got more vicious as the Consultancy decided to ransack whole villages and massacre large numbers in them including women, children and babies.  Shamefully, it began and intensified under Mandate authority with a large British military presence on the ground to maintain order that never did.  It chose instead to look the other way and let all horrific events on the ground go on unimpeded.  By March, 1948, Plan Dalet became operational as the battle plan to remove the entire Palestinian population from the 78% of the country Zionists established as the state of Israel on May 15 when the Mandate ended.
Then bagean the 10th stage of genocide; denial. The campaign included disingenuous rhetoric and propaganda about Jews in Palestine being under threat from a hostile population having to go on the offensive in self-defense.  The truth turned that notion on its head because of the military, political and economic imbalance between the two communities.  It was so lopsided, the outcome was never in doubt as long as the British stayed out of it.  They did, and after the Mandate ended in mid-May it was the UN’s problem to deal with.  It also failed the test as discussed below.
Plan Dalet began in the rural hills on the western slopes of the Jerusalem mountains half way on the road to Tel-Aviv.  It was called Operation Nachshon, and it served as a model for future campaigns.  It employed sudden massive expulsions using terror tactics that proved the most effective way to clear an area preparing it for Jewish resettlement to follow.  Early on, the plan wasn’t to spare a single village, and orders given to carry it out were clear: "the principle objective of the operation is the destruction of Arab villages (and) the eviction of the villagers so that they would become an economic liability for the general Arab forces." 
To motivate attacking Israeli forces, Palestinians were dehumanized as sub-humans worthy of no respect or consideration making them legitimate targets for destruction.  It’s the same tactic US forces used against the Japanese in WW II, in Vietnam, in Iraq, Afghanistan, etcetera. In each instance, targets were people of color or others not white enough like Arabs.
Illan Pappe calls those massacres "urbicide of Palestine", which included attacking and cleansing the major urban centers in the country.  They included Tiberias, Haifa, Tel-Aviv, Safad and what Pappe calls the "Phantom City of Jerusalem" changed from the "Eternal City" once Zionist troops shelled, attacked and occupied its western Arab neighborhoods in April, 1948.  The Brits stood aside shamelessly doing nothing to stop it except in one area, Ahaykh Jarrah, where a local British commander intervened.
It was a rare exception proving how much better Palestinians would have fared if their British "protectors" had actually done their job.  They didn’t, and the result was chaos and a state of panic with Israelis having free reign to ravage Northern and Western Jerusalem with heavy shelling, pillaging and destruction while ethnically cleansing the population in eight Palestinian neighborhoods and 39 villages in the greater Jerusalem area transferring them to the Eastern part of the city.
The urbicide continued into May with the occupation of Acre on the coast and Baysan in the East on May 6.  On May 13, Jaffa was the last city taken two days before the Mandate ended.  The city had 1500 volunteers against 5000 Jewish troops.  It survived a three week siege and attack through mid-May, but when it fell its entire population of 50,000 was expelled.  With its fall, Jewish occupying forces had emptied and depopulated all the major cities and towns of Palestine, and most of their inhabitants never again got to see their former homes.
This all happened between March 30 and May 15, 1948 "before a single regular Arab soldier had entered Palestine (to help Palestinians which they did ineffectively when they finally came)."  His account also undermines the Israeli-concocted myth that Palestinians left voluntarily before or after Arab forces intervened.  Nearly half their villages were attacked and destroyed before Arab countries sent in any forces, and another 90 villages were wiped out from May 15 (when the Mandate ended) till June 11 when the first of two short-lived truces took effect.
The UN’s partition plan caused the problem, and yet the world body did nothing to remediate a situation that was out of control.  Early on it was clear a potential disaster loomed that, in fact, ended up worse than first imagined.  Still, the British through May 15, the UN, and neighboring Arab states of Egypt, Syria, Lebanon, Jordan and Iraq procrastinated as long as possible before reluctantly stepping in, and when they did it was too little, too late.  Pappe calls Jordan’s (Transjordan then) King Abdullah "the odd man out."  He had army units inside Palestine, some were willing to protect villagers’ homes and lands, but they were restrained by their commanders.
It was because earlier the King and Zionists cut a deal allowing Jordan to annex most of the land the partition allocated to the Palestinians that became the West Bank.  In return, Jordanian forces agreed not to engage Jewish troops militarily.  To their shame and discredit, the Brits agreed to this scheme effectively sealing the Palestinians’ fate.  Still, once the British Mandate ended, Jordan had to fight Zionist forces for what it got because Ben-Gurion reneged on his deal.  All along, he wanted as much territory as possible for a "Jewish state" on more land than the 78% he ended up with. Fortunately, that time, the Jordanian military prevailed, spoiling his plans. It saved 250,000 Palestinians in the West Bank from being ethnically cleansed the way other Palestinians were who weren’t as fortunate.
As already explained, after waffling during March and April, the Arab League finally sent regular armies to intervene in Palestine.  Ironically at this time, it was learned the US State Department on March 12, 1948 drafted a new proposal to the UN suggesting the partition plan failed and an alternate approach was needed.  The proposal was for an international trusteeship over Palestine to last five years during which time the two sides would work out a mutually agreed solution.  It concluded partitioning failed and was causing violence and bloodshed.  At that point, this was probably the most sensible proposal ever made.
Shamefully it was stillborn because even then a Zionist lobby was influential in Washington, it dealt with Harry Truman in the White House, and it succeeded in derailing the State Department’s efforts even though Department Arabists convinced Truman to rethink the partition plan and proposed a three month armistice to both sides to consider it.  That also failed as a new Jewish People’s Board was created and met on May 12. Ben-Gurion and almost all others present rejected Truman’s offer.  Three days later they established the state of Israel which the White House recognized almost immediately.
Zionist cunning is common knowledge now; then, not yet. The Arabs react, too late, actually. The  Arab League’s English Commander-in-Chief, Glubb Pasha, called the 1948 war in Palestine the "Phony War."  He was right. Pasha knew king Abdullah of Jordan cut a deal for his own territorial gain and other Arab armies entering the war planned to do it "pathetically" as some on the Arab interventionist side called their Campaign. Cairo only committed forces the last minute on May 12.  It set aside 10,000 troops for the engagement, but half of them were Muslim Brotherhood volunteers opposed to Egyptian collaboration with imperialism, and they’d just been released from prison because of their opposition.  They had no training, were likely picked as convenient cannon fodder, and despite their fervor were no match for the Jewish military.
Syrian forces were better trained, their political leaders more committed, but only a small contingent was sent, and they performed so ineffectively the Consultancy considered seizing the Golan Heights later gotten in the 1967 war.  Even smaller and less committed were Lebanese units most of which stayed on their side of the border defending adjacent villages.  Iraqi troops were also involved but only numbered a few thousand.  Their government ordered them not to attack Israel but only to defend the West Bank land allocated to Jordan.  Still, they defied orders, became more broadly engaged, and temporarily saved 15 Palestinian villages in Wadi Ara until 1949 when the Jordanian government ceded the area to Israel as part of a bilateral armistice agreement.
Overall, invading Arab forces performed "pathetically." They overstretched their supply lines, ran out of ammunition, used mostly antiquated and malfunctioning arms, and there was no command and control coordination vital for a successful campaign.  It showed their lack of commitment to the final outcome although in fairness to them their main British and French  suppliers declared an arms embargo on Palestine hamstringing their effort.  
In contrast, Zionist forces had a ready inexhaustible source of armaments from Eastern Europe.  As a result, their weapons easily outgunned the combined Arab force, and its force size outnumbered and outclassed them.  The Yishuv, despite the Israeli-concocted myth that the very existence of a Jewish state was at stake.  It never was, and Ben-Gurion and other Zionist leaders knew it early on, but shamessly used the Hasbara (propaganda) to spread fake news. The phony "war" only allowed ethnic cleansing to go on unimpeded.  It spared no one from removal, slaughter and loss of their homes and land.  They were dynamited, torched, and leveled to the ground to make way for new Yishuv settlements and neighborhoods to be built to the immigrants on bloody robbed land. 
When the phony war finally ended in September 1949, Israel signed separate armistice agreements with its four major warring adversaries.  The agreements allotted Israel 78% of British Mandatory Palestine, over 40% more than the UN partition allowed.  The cease-fire lines agreed to became known as the "Green Line."  Gaza was occupied by Egypt and the West Bank by Jordan.  For the victorious Israelis, this was their moment of triumph in their "War of Independence", but for the defeated and displaced Palestinians it became known as "al Nakba" – "The Catastrophe."  An unknown number of Palestinians were killed and about 800,000 became refugees.  Their lives were destroyed, and they were left to the mercy of neighboring Arab countries and conditions in the camps where they barely got any.
Toward the end of 1948, Israel focused on its anti-repatriation policy pursuing it on two levels.  The first was national, introduced in August that year, with the decision taken to destroy all cleansed villages transforming them into new Jewish settlements or "natural" forests.  The second level was diplomatic to avoid international pressure to allow Palestinian refugees to return to their homes and villages.
Nonetheless, Palestinians had an ally in the UN Palestine Conciliation Commission (PCC) that spearheaded efforts for refugees to return and called for their unconditional right to do it.  Their position became UN Resolution 194 giving Palestinians the unconditional option to return to their homes or be compensated for their losses if they chose not to.  This right was also affirmed in Article 13 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights adopted as General Assembly Resolution 217 A (III) on December 10, 1948, the day before it passed Resolution 194. To this day, all Israeli governments have ignored both resolutions and gotten away with it because of support and complicity by the West and indifference by Israel’s Arab neighbors preferring strategic alliances for their own benefit and writing off the Palestinians as a small price to pay for it  to their shame and disgrace.
Even at war’s end and Israel’s ethnic cleansing completed, Palestinians’ agony and hardships were only beginning. Throughout 1949, and beginning a precedent continuing to this day, about 8,000 refugees were put in prison camps while many others escaping cleansing were physically abused and harassed under Israeli military rule. The Palestinians lost everything including their homes, fields, places of worship and other holy places, freedom of movement and expression and any hope for just treatment and redress according to the rule of law not applied to them.  They were afflicted with such indignities as needing newly-issued identity cards.  Not having them on their person at all times meant imprisonment up to 1.5 years and immediate transfer to a pen for "unauthorized" and "suspicious" Arabs.  This went on in cities and rural areas as undisguised racism and persecution.
Other kinds of Israeli harshness were also introduced at this time that all Palestinians are still subjected to today in the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT).  There were roadblocks that now include checkpoints and curfews with violators shot on sight.  These conditions were imposed to make life so unbearable, those subjected to them might opt to leave the territories for relief elsewhere.
Worse still in 1949 were concentration camps where thousands of Palestinian prisoners were held under military rule for forced labor for all tasks that could strengthen the economy or aid the military.  Conditions in them were deplorable and included working in quarries carrying heavy stones, living on one potato in the morning and half a dried fish at noon.  Anyone complaining was beaten severely, and others were singled out for summary execution if they were considered a threat.
Life outside prison and concentration camps wasn’t much better.  Red Cross representatives sent their Geneva headquarters reports of collective human rights abuses including finding piles of dead bodies.  Overall, Palestinians surviving expulsion and now Israeli citizens gained nothing.  They had no rights and were subjected to constant random violence and abuse with no protection from the law applying only to Jews.  Their places of worship were profaned and schools vandalized.  Those still with homes were robbed with impunity by looters in broad daylight.  They took everything they wanted – furniture, clothing, anything useful for Jewish immigrants entering the new Jewish state.  Palestinians reported that there wasn’t a single home or shop not broken into and ransacked.  The authorities did nothing to stop it or prosecute offenders.  It was like living under a perpetual "Kristallnacht."
Further, Palestinian areas were "ghettoised" as a way to imprison people other than by putting them behind bars or in camps.  In Haifa, for example, they were ordered from their homes and transferred to designated parts of the city, then crammed into confined quarters the way it was done in Wadi Nisnas, one of the city’s poorest areas. The UN and Red Cross also reported many cases of rape, confirmed by uncovered Israeli archives and from the oral history of victims and their boasting victimizers.
Finally, with the phony war over and ethnic cleansing completed, the Israeli government relaxed its harshness and halted the looting and ghettoisation in cities.  A new structure was created called The Committee for Arab Affairs that dealt with growing international pressure on Israel to allow for repatriation of the refugees.  Israeli officials tried to sidestep efforts by proposing instead refugees be settled in neighboring Arab states like Lebanon, Jordan and Syria.  Their efforts succeeded as discussions produced no results nor was there much effort to enforce Resolution 194. 
Other issues also remained unresolved including money expropriated from the former 1.3 million Palestinian citizens of Mandatory Palestine as well as their property now in Israeli hands. The first governor of the Israeli national bank estimated it was valued at 100 million British pounds.  There was also the question of cultivated land confiscated and lost that amounted to 3.5 million dunum or almost 22,000 square miles.  The Israeli government forestalled international indignation by appointing a custodian for the newly acquired properties pending their final disposition.  It dealt with the problem by selling them to public and private Jewish groups which it claimed the right to do as the moment confiscated lands came under government custodianship they became property of the state of Israel.  That, in turn, meant none of it could be sold to Arabs which is still the law in Israel today.
As this took place, the human geography of Palestine was transformed by design.  Its Arab character in cities was erased and with it the history and culture of people who lived there for centuries before Zionists arrived to depopulate their state making it one for Jews alone.  They only succeeded partially but managed to transform ancient Palestine into the state of Israel creating insurmountable problems Palestinians now face in it and the OPT.  In 1949, about 150,000 Palestinians survived expulsion in the territory of Israel and were now citizens designated by the Committee of Arab Affairs as "Arab Israelis."  That designation meant they were denied all rights given Jews.
They were put under military rule, comparable to the Nuremberg Laws under the Nazis and no less harsh.  It  denied them the basic rights of free expression, movement, organization and equality with the "chosen Jewish people" of the new Jewish state.  They still had the right to vote and could be elected to the Israeli Knesset, but with severe restrictions.  This regime lasted officially until 1966, but, in fact, never ended to this day and has been especially severe since the democratic election of Hamas in January, 2006 as well as throughout the Second Intifada that began with Ariel Sharon’s provocative visit to the al-Aqsa Mosque on September 28, 2000.
The Committee of Arab Affairs continued meeting, and as late as 1956 considered plans for mass removal of all remaining Arabs in Israel. Even though ethnic cleansing formerly ended in 1949, expulsions continued throughout this period until 1953, but never really ended to this day.  Palestinians surviving it paid a terrible price with the loss of their possessions, land, history and future still unaddressed with justice so far denied them and ignored.
The theft of their land by ethnic cleansing led to new Jewish settlements in their place and now are built on occupied Palestinian land in the OPT.  In 1950, disposition of it was placed in the hands of the Settlement Department of the Jewish National Fund (JNF).  The JNF law was passed in 1953 granting the agency independent status as landowner for the Jewish state.  That law and others, like the Law of the Land of Israel, stipulated the JNF wasn’t allowed to sell or lease land to non-Jews.  The Knesset passed a final law in 1967, the Law of Agricultural Settlement, prohibiting the subletting of Jewish-owned land to non-Jews.  The law also prohibited water resources from being transferred to non-JNF lands.
After ethnic cleansing completion, Palestinians remaining comprised 17% of the new Israeli state but were was allotted only 2% of the land to live and build on with another 1% for agricultural use only.  Today, 1.4 million Palestinian Arabs are Israeli citizens or about 20% of the population.  The still have the same 3% total, an intolerable situation for a population this size.  The 1.4 million Palestinians in occupied, ghettoized and quarantined Gaza live under even harsher conditions in what’s now considered the world’s largest open air prison with a population density three times that of Manhattan.  The 2.5 million others in the West Bank aren’t treated much better living under severe repression from a foreign occupier.
Palestinian lands under JNF control also included authority to rename them to destroy centuries of history they signified.  The task went to archaeolgists and biblical experts volunteering to serve on an official Naming Committee to "Hebraisize" Palestine’s geography.  The goal was to de-Arabize the lands, erase their history, and use it for new Jewish colonization and development as well as create European-looking national parks with recreational facilities including picnic sites and children’s playgrounds for Jews only.  Hidden beneath them were destroyed Palestinian villages erased from the public memory but not from that of people who once lived there who’d never forget or allow their descendents to. 
The JNF website features four of the larger, most popular resort parks belying and defiling the long history beneath them – the Birya Forest, Ramat Menashe Forest, Jerusalem Forest and Sataf.  They all symbolize  Pappe’s poignant prose that: "better than any other space today in Israel, (these lands represent) both the Nakba and the denial of the Nakba."  Today, descendents of families displaced six decades ago still live in refuge camps and diasporic communities in neighboring Arab countries and elsewhere.  Their collective memories won’t ever be erased nor will justice be served until they receive redress for the crimes committed against their ancestors and those still living.
Pappe emphasizes what other regional experts like him believe – the key to peace in the Middle East is a just and lasting settlement of the Palestinian refugee problem as well as equity for those living in the OPT and all Palestinian Israeli citizens long denied any rights and forced to live in an Israeli apartheid state under harsh conditions of severe repression. 
Bottomline, two main factors deter conflict resolution  today – the Zionist ideology of ethnic supremacy and the so-called "peace process" that’s always been structured to avoid peace at all costs.  The first factor continues denying the Nakba’s legitimacy, and the second one always succeeds in foiling an international will to bring justice to the region by maintaining a state of conflict to justify Israel’s harsh response to it pretending it’s for self-defense.  It works because the US supports and funds the Jewish state allowing it to get away with mass-murder, property destruction, land theft and denial of everything Palestinians hold dear including their lives and freedom.  Nothing has changed since 1948 because the West goes along as well as do most Arab states for their own political and economic gain.  Palestinians have no bargaining power and can do nothing to alleviate their plight.
The UN world body should have aided them but never did. It’s flawed partition plan caused the conflict to begin with.  It cost Palestinians everything, and nothing happened since to win them redress.  Even after its early missteps, the UN might have made a difference but erred again by not involving the International Refugee Organization (IRO) that always recommends repatriation as a refugee entitlement.  Instead it backed Israel’s wish to avoid IRO involvement by creating a special agency for Palestinian refugees that became UNRWA in 1950 or the UN Relief and Work Agency.  UNRWA wasn’t committed to the Right of Return and only looked after refugees’ daily needs to provide employment and fund permanent camps to house them.  Its efforts amounted to little more than putting band-aids on gaping wounds still raw and unaddressed. 
It’s typical of how the UN still operates today under the thumb of its dominant member country where it’s headquartered.  It’s so-called "peacekeeping" function is a pathetic and disgraceful example as keeping the peace is the one thing Blue Helmets almost never do.  Its first ever operation began in 1948 as the United Nations Truce Supervision Organization (UNTSO) mandated to supervise the armistice agreements and earlier uneasy truces between warring Israeli and Arab forces.  It’s been there ever since, never prevented wars in 1956, 1967 and 1973 nor did it ever succeed in establishing or maintaining peace.  The operation is still active, but it’s little more than a pathetic presence without purpose observing violations on the ground and doing nothing to stop them or even report them properly to superiors.  The IDF controls everything, operates freely, and UN "peacekeepers" keep quiet but no peace. 
Out of this mess earlier, Palestinian nationalism emerged as the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) that became the sole legitimate representative of the Palestinian people.  It was founded by the Arab League in 1964 and committed to the Right of Return.  It also had to confront what Pappe calls "two manifestations of denial" – international peace brokers’ denial of Palestinian concerns as part of a future peace arrangement and refusal to deal with Israelis’ denial of the Nakba and their unwillingness to be held accountable for it.  To this day, refugee issues and  Nakba crimes are excluded from the so-called "peace process" assuring there never will be a one unless that changes.
At first, in the spring of 1949, the UN made some  conflict resolution effort by organizing a conference in Lausanne, Switzerland.  Nothing came from it, however,  because prime minister Ben-Gurion and King Abdullah scuttled it to get on with their partition scheme. Two more decades were then lost until after the 1967 war when the US got more involved, began colluding with the Israelis, and couched all new peace efforts within an overall context of a Middle East Pax Americana.  It meant from that time till now, an equitable resolution of the conflict and attention to Palestinians’ needs and rights were sidelined in favor of addressing Israeli needs and those of its US Partner.
In 1967, Israel excluded the 1948 Nakba and Right of Return from any peace discussions. Thenceforth, it based all negotiations on the notion that the conflict began in 1967 when Israel seized and occupied the West Bank and Gaza in the June Six Days’ War that year, won by France and Great Britain to the profit of Israel's expansion.  This was also how Israel sought to legitimize its 1948 "War of Independence" and all its crimes it wanted erased from the public memory.  No longer were they on the table to be considered in any future conflict resolution negotiation.  For Palestinians, the 1948 Nakba is their core issue, and without it being settled equitably there can never be closure or a real lasting peace in the region.
Nonetheless, by the mid-seventies, the PLO softened its stance enough to accept a US-led international consensus favoring a two-state solution.  It led to the 1978 Camp David Accords and peace treaty between Israel and Egypt, but it left Palestinians out in the cold by implicitly renouncing their Right of Return and failing to address the issue of an independent state. 
The predictable result was festering anger in the OPT that led to the first Intifada in 1987 that, in turn, led to the Madrid peace conference following the 1991 Gulf war.  From it, the 1993 Oslo Accords and so-called Declaration of Principles emerged that once again betrayed Palestinian hopes for redress denied them to this day.  Israel got an agreement to establish a new Palestinian Authority (PA) to act as its comprador enforcer to control a restive people.  All the tough issues were left unaddressed meaning they never would be – an independent Palestinian state, the Right of Return, status of Jerusalem, settlements in the OPT and established borders.
Oslo I led to Oslo II in 1995 and further betrayal.  The new agreement divided the West Bank into three zones – Areas A, B, and C plus a fourth area of Israeli occupied East Jerusalem.  It established a complicated system of control allowing Israel in Area C to build settlements on the most valuable land with its water resources mostly denied the Palestinians.  By 2000, 59% of the West Bank was in Area C.  Israel is slowly annexing more of the territory by expanding settlements and building new ones.  It’s also getting it by its Separation or Apartheid Wall on seized Palestinian land, building new roads for Jews only on more of it, and defining one-third of the West Bank as Greater Jérusalem.
So-called "permanent status" talks began in July, 2000 at Camp David that once again resulted in betrayal.  Israelis never made a good faith offer in writing or intended to.  They provided no documentation or maps.  All Palestinians got was a plan dividing the West Bank into four isolated "Bantustan" cantons surrounded by Israeli settlements and continued occupation with no resolution of their fundamental long-standing problems and core issues. 
Predictably it led to the second al-Aqsa Mosque Intifada triggered by Ariel Sharon’s provocative visit to the Muslim Noble Sanctuary on September 28, 2000 as explained above.  It then spun out of control when Palestinians, fed up with Fatah betrayal, democratically elected a Hamas government in January, 2006 foiling Israeli efforts to assure their complicit allies would again prevail.  When they didn’t, Israel denounced the results, never accepted Hamas as a peace partner, refused to negotiate with them in good faith, and acted ever since in bad faith to destroy Hamas and punish the Palestinian people for their "wrong" choice. That’s how things always work under rules of imperial management practiced by the US and its Israeli partner complicit in their collective attempt to destroy a democratically elected government misportraying them as "terrorists" to get the West to go along and the public to believe it.
Today, Israel is slowly annexing more of the West Bank in a relentless process wanting all useful parts of it for exclusive Jewish habitation only.  It made the job easier by defining one-third of it as Greater Jerusalem while expropriating Palestinian land to expand existing settlements, build new ones, add new roads for Jews only, and erect the Separation Wall falsely claimed for security to disguise its real land-grab purpose plus another way to cantonize Palestinians in isolated areas cut off from all others and effectively enclose them in large open-air prisons.
This is part of the appalling daily oppression and persecution ongoing against Palestinians in the OPT and also against Israeli Arab citizens living in Israel.  Former US president Jimmy Carter pierced the "last taboo" daring to open a forbidden window on part of it in his new best-selling book Peace Not Apartheid that got him vilified by the Israeli Lobby implying he’s anti-semitic.  He courageously wrote about a rigid system of segregation in the OPT even though he failed to acknowledge the same injustices go on inside Israel he called a model democratic state which it is not.
Palestinian Israeli citizens living get none of the democratic rights afforded Israeli Jews, and Carter, of course, knows that or should know it.  He distanced himself from that consideration that might have been too much truth to reveal at one time.  Nonetheless, his bold, if partial, step represents an important breakthrough that may encourage other high-level officials in the US and elsewhere to add their voices to his exposing all Israeli crimes demanding redress.  They won’t ever be addressed until enough prominent figures step forward to denounce them and finally reveal their extent to an uninformed public duped by the Hasbara. Justice can be stablished, but not until the power of the Israeli Lobby is neutralized by forces for truth and justice surpassing it in power and influence. Regrettably, that day is nowhere in sight.
Zionists want at any cost to achieve their dream of transforming Palestine in a homeland for Jews alone. Theodor Herzl wrote his solution in his diary in 1895: "We shall endeavour to expel the poor population across the border unnoticed, procuring employment for it in the transit countries, but denying it any employment in our own country."
In 1947, Ben-Gurion adopted his own version of Herzl’s solution with his ethnic cleaning plan that’s gone on ever since in various forms under succeeding prime ministers to this day.  It’s meant continual displacement of Palestinians in the West Bank by new and expanded  Israeli settlement developments and Separation Wall land seizures.  Zionist project to construct and then defend a Jewish (repferrably white) fortress in a ‘brown’ Arab world.  At the heart of the refusal to allow Palestinians the Right of Return is the fear of Jewish Israelis that they will eventually be outnumbered by the rightfull nationals, this is, the Palestinians  To assure this won’t happen, Israel intends to maintain an overwhelming Jewish majority regardless of world public opinion.  There’s no dissent in the West or among most Arab leaders because US administrations won’t tolerate any.
The consensus in Israel today is for a state comprising 90% of Palestine "surrounded by electric fences and visible and invisible walls" with Palestinians given only worthless cantonized scrub lands of little or no value to the Jewish state.  In 2006, 1.4 million Palestinians live in Israel on 2% of the land allotted them plus another 1% for agricultural use with six millions Jews on most of the rest.  Another 3.9 million live concentrated in Israel’s unwanted portions of the West Bank and concentrated in Gaza that’s three times the population density of Manhattan.  It’s made for intolerable conditions throughout the OPT that guarantee resistance to them and the same harsh Israeli responses in an unending cycle of violence, repression and unresolved and unaddressed injustices.
For people of conscience and good faith, there’s only one solution – Israel’s willingness one day to transform itself into a civic and democratic state ending the last postcolonial European enclave in the Arab world.  The Palestinian people will accept nothing less nor should they, and growing numbers of Israelis are aware of the horror and injustice of the Nakba.  So far, they only comprise a small minority, but they may hold the key to a future resolution if their numbers grow enough and they become vocal as is now slowly happening.
Today, however, the situation for Palestinians is grim with unrelenting daily Israeli assaults against them in Gaza and the West Bank along with Jerusalem slipping away by an ethnic cleansing process to make the city one for Jews only. As Illan Pappe explains "The problem with Israel was never its Jewishness….it is its ethnic Zionist character."  It represents a "tempest that threatens to ruin Israeli Jews and Christian and Muslin Palestinians alike. 
On the other hand, more pressure is coming from Israeli officials calling Iran an "existential threat" and from Binyamin Netanyahu whose rhetoric and deeds are criminally insane.  If the US and Israel attack Iran as they wish, all bets are off, and Palestinians, already under an Israeli siege, will suffer even more.  It means cooler heads on both sides must denounce this kind of talk and find a way to avoid a wider war.  It won’t be easy at a perilous time where a Washington & Tel Aviv conflict escalation seems to be planned.
And there’s the internal threat of one Palestinian faction facing off against the other.  On one side is the besieged Hamas elected government in Gaza already in tatters from years of harsh sanctions and daily Israeli assaults. On the other are corrupted Fatah forces loyal to PA chairman Mahmoud Abbas acting as a quisling proxy comprador enforcer for Israeli and US imperial interests for everything he stands to gain selling out his people for crumbs handed him and his cronies. 
In the middle there is Marwan Barghouti - the Palestinian Nelson Mandela - in prison. He is the only Palestinian who has the trust of his people. He is the only Palestinian with authority to lead a conciliation and negotiate a peace agreement with Israel that would be accepted by all PLO members. Marwan Barghouti could, can get a fair deal that will bring peace and prosperity for all. That is why the Israeli officials keep him in jail. They don't want peace and justice, They want the Great Israel from the Mediterranean Sea to the Jordan River for Jews only, with the Palestinian survivors as a humiliated cheap/slave labour dispossessed of all of their belongs - nation, land, home. 

IRAN
Iran is ready to hold talks with the United States if Washington lifts sanctions and returns to the 2015 nuclear deal it pulled out of last year, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said in a televised speech this Sunday: "We have always believed in talks ... if they lift sanctions, end the imposed economic pressure and return to the deal, we are ready to hold talks with America today, right now and anywhere." 
But Iran has made any talks conditional on first being able to export as much oil as it did before the US withdrew from the nuclear pact with world powers in May 2018. 
Tensions heightened between the longtime foes last year when Donald Trump withdrew from the nuclear deal between Iran and six world powers and reimposed sanctions on Tehran that had been lifted under the pact. In reaction to US snctions, which have notably targeted Iran's main foreign revenue Stream in the shape of crude oïl export. Tehran announced in May it would scale back its commitments to the deal.

PALESTINA

Michael Lynk, an independent UN researcher, said the European Union (EU) and some world powers should consider cutting economic, political and cultural ties with Israel in support of the Palestinian quest for statehood.
"The international community has to look at the available menu of countermeasures that is commonly used to a wide range of countries involving gross human rights violations and has to decide what are the appropriate ones to consider to use with respect to Israel.
The international community actually holds a lot of cards with Israel, and it has to say to Israel: 'Your membership or privileges through bilateral or multilateral agreements with respect to your economy, political and cultural relationships are all going to be called into question and reviewed unless you show genuine attempts to unwind and undo the occupation'."
The continued expansion of Israeli settlements in the occupied territories is a hurdle to a future Palestinian state. Palestinians say peace with Israel can be achieved if they are given control of the occupied West Bank, Gaza Strip as well as occupied East Jerusalem.
Lynk is on a week-long trip to meet Israeli and Palestinian officials and activists in Jordanian capital Amman to carry out research for a report he will submit to the UN's Geneva-based Human Rights Council in October. He was holding meetings in Jordan because, as on previous visits, he was not granted access by Israeli officials. He is the UN's special rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian territory, meaning he probes the issue and publishes reports. In the past, his conclusions have been heavily criticised by the United States and Israel.
Lynk's recommendations are not legally-binding. While his requests may seem overly ambitious, Palestinian activists could well see them as a useful alternative to a formal peace process that has largely ground to a halt. For him, the UN members should consider everything from cutting cultural ties with Israel to suspending its membership of the world body. He emphasised the role of the EU, which accounts for some 40 percent of Israel's external trade and could make the flow of Israeli goods and services to the 28-nation bloc contingent on policy shifts that help Palestinians.
The Canadian law professor also focussed on two UN-backed mechanisms designed to hold Israel accountable for human rights violations that appear to have ground to a halt under pressure from the US and Israel.
Firstly, Lynk called for the speedy publication of a long-awaited blacklist of Israeli and international companies that profit from operations in Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank, which has been drawn up by the UN’s human rights apparatus in Geneva.
Secondly, he urged prosecutors at the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague to hasten its preliminary investigation of allegations of rights abuses by Israel and Hamas on Palestinian territory, which began in 2015.
"Unless there is international pressure on Israel to do the right thing, Israel will continue to deepen and further entrench the occupation. I don't know what the international community needs to come to the realisation that Israel is not going to unwind the occupation and permit Palestinian self-determination all on its own."
Israel captured the West Bank in 1967 war. Its settlements are illegal under international law. Palestinians deem the outposts, and the military presence needed to protect them, to be obstacles to their goal of establishing a state. Israel disputes this.
In April, Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu made a pre-election promise to voters that he would annex Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank if he won another term in office - a move that is increasingly discussed by Israeli politicians. His rhetoric was backed by US ambassador to Israel, David Friedman, who said that Israel has the right to annex at least "some" of the occupied West Bank.
According to Lynk, Israelis are confident because of support from US President Donald Trump, who has recognised Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, moved the US embassy there, and recognised Israeli sovereignty over the occupied Golan Heights.
Last month, a US-led conference in Bahrain designed to drum up investment in the Palestinian economy and pave a path to peace with Israel came under criticism, as no official delegation from either of the two parties attended.
Palestinians have rejected the US peace plan dubbed "deal of the century" - the terms of which have yet to be made public - saying they were not consulted.
That US peace initiative, hatched by Trump’s senior adviser and son-in-law Jared Kushner, is "on life support", said Lynk. "We're waiting to see what the Americans, presumably in November, will do … but unless the political part of the American peace plan adheres to a rights-based approach and international law, I think the plan is going to be dead on arrival and rejected.

Grayzone: The Guardian publishes, then censors Jewish open letter defending smeared pro-Corbyn Labour MP Chris Williamson.


OCHA  



BRASIL

O nosso país e a imprensa nacional perdeu no dia 10 o jornalista Paulo Henrique Amorim. 
Que João Gilberto o espere com Bossa e um grance abraço. 
Paulo Henrique Amorim merece todas as homenagens daqui debaixo e lá do alto. 
Obrigada, Paulo Henrique. Obrigada por sua lucidez, sua devoção ao jornalismo e a lealdade ao Brasil. 
Que Deus o guarde.
Paulo Henrique Amorim por si mesmo
Suas últimas. Encontrará outras tantas no site do Conversa Afiada. 




AOS FATOS:Todas as declarações de Bolsonaro, checadas

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