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URUK Net 22 October, 2009 Part 2

Last updated: Saturday, October 24, 2009 20:12

Free Gaza “Dignity” First Anniversary
Greta Berlin, Free Gaza Movement
October 22, 2009 – A year ago today, our boat, the DIGNITY, made her first voyage to Gaza. She was a beautiful white and silver yacht, donated by people who believed in the Free Gaza movement after our first successful voyage in August. On board were dignitaries such as Mairead Maquire, the 1976 Nobel Peace Prize winner from Ireland and Mustafa Barghouti, President of the Palestinian National Initiative and a member of the Palestinian Legislative Council (MP).

It was to be our second trip to Gaza, one postponed for a month, because we didn’t have the proper vessel to go in the fall until the week before we were leaving…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=59234

Outrage! Isolation of Ahmad Sa’adat extended six months
The Campaign to Free Ahmad Sa’adat
October 22, 2009 – As actions across Palestine and around the world in support of imprisoned Palestinian national leader Ahmad Sa’adat continue, the illegitimate Israeli occupation military court in Bir Saba today extended Sa’adat’s isolation for six additional months. Take action today to say that we will not allow these abuses to continue! Ahmad Sa’adat, the General Secretary of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, continued his boycott of the occupation courts, stating that these courts are illegitimate, invalid and can produce nothing but a mockery of justice, and that these courts are part and parcel of the war machine that continues its aggression against the Palestinian people, with isolation another weapon in their arsenal…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=59246

America’s Phoney War in Afghanistan
by F. William Engdahl
October 22, 2009 – One of the most remarkable aspects of the Obama Presidential agenda is how little anyone has questioned in the media or elsewhere why at all the United States Pentagon is committed to a military occupation of Afghanistan. There are two basic reasons, neither one of which can be admitted openly to the public at large. Behind all the deceptive official debate over how many troops are needed to “win” the war in Afghanistan, whether another 30,000 is sufficient, or whether at least 200000 are needed, the real purpose of US military presence in that pivotal Central Asian country is obscured. Even during the 2008 Presidential campaign candidate Obama argued that Afghanistan not Iraq was where the US must wage war. His reason? Because he claimed, that was where the Al Qaeda organization was holed up and that was the “real” threat to US national security. The reasons behind US involvement in Afghanistan is quite another one. The US military is in Afghanistan for two reasons. First to restore and control the world’s largest supply of opium for the world heroin markets and to use the drugs as a geopolitical weapon against opponents, especially Russia. That control of the Afghan drug market is essential for the liquidity of the bankrupt and corrupt Wall Street financial mafia…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=59231

Wadi Araba Treaty: No cause for celebration
By Ibrahim Alloush
October 22, 2009 – … Slowly but surely it has become clear to all that the “Israeli” version of peace is not about making peace, but about re-structuring the geo-political environment in “Israel’s” vicinity by breaking up Arab states in order to establish a “brave new Middle East” that is based on a multiplicity of ethnic, sectarian, and regional mini-states which revolve in “Israel’s” orbit. From Tel Aviv to AIPAC in Washington, the Zionist promotion of the destruction of Iraq along sectarian and ethnic lines, and the role of the Zionist lobby in the US in pushing for the secession of Darfur in Sudan—always under the banner of “minority rights”—are just two casual cases in point as far as this goes. In this geopolitical context, Jordan is to become a “substitute homeland” for Palestinians as many an “Israeli” politician and journalist has stipulated so succinctly; in fact, as the “Israeli” Knesset has deliberated quite openly for the whole world to watch and learn…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=59241

Pro-Israel Group’s Money Trail Veers Hard Right
By Eli Clifton
October 22, 2009 – StandWithUs – an “organization that ensures that Israel’s side of the story is told” – has become increasingly aggressive in challenging the “pro-Israel” credentials of moderate Jewish-American groups, going so far as to suggest that receiving money from Arab donors and supporters of Human Rights Watch undermines a group’s commitment to Israel and peace. J Street – the “Pro-Israel and Pro-Peace” advocacy group – faced criticism last week for accepting contributions from donors who have been critical of Israeli government actions. But an IPS investigation into the tax records of the donors to StandWithUs, which professes to be ideologically neutral, found a web of funders who support organisations that have been accused of anti-Muslim propaganda and encouraging a militant Israeli and U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=59232

Afghan Resistance Statement
Were the Elections not A Travesty?
Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan
October 22, 2009 – It is now clear as the broad day light that the August 20 elections in Afghanistan was readily ludicrous and preposterous which caused more shame and disgrace to the surrogate regime in Kabul. Only a minuscule numbers of voters participated in the polling from among the 30 million Afghans. Still the elections were fraught with fraud, ballot stuffing and corruption. A great number of Afghans observed a complete boycott. It is still a matter of extreme shame for the supporters of the sham democracy, that they were merely able to announce the results after the passage of two months…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=59239

Those amazing and wonderful Iraqi security forces
The Common Ills
October 22, 2009 – A recent spate of high-profile crimes, including a brazen and violent robbery of Baghdad jewelry shops thought to have involved police collusion, has forced Interior Ministry officials to confront head-on the corruption within the ranks of the 663,000-strong security forces.
The problems, the officials say, include cases in which troops and officers are working at the behest of political leaders, as well as instances in which security forces are engaged in a range of crimes, from petty robberies at checkpoints to kidnappings and killings. The above is from Nada Bakri’s “In Iraq, battling an internal bane” (Washington Post) and that’s the Iraqi security forces — so highly praised in yesterday’s US House Armed Services Committee by the Pentagon’s Michele Flournoy, Alan Estevez and Vice Admiral James Winnefeld…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=59233

IRAN, ISRAEL: Avowed enemies allegedly held secret nuclear talks
Alexandra Sandels
October 22, 2009 – Reports are surfacing about a meeting that allegedly took place between an Israeli atomic expert and a senior Iranian official in Cairo in September to discuss the possibility of making the Middle East a nuclear-free zone. The talks, vehemently denied by Iranians but confirmed by Israelis, were reportedly held behind closed doors at the Four Seasons Hotel in Cairo under Australian auspices and would be the first direct negotiations between the two archenemies since the ousting of the shah in Iran in 1979. Although participants in the meeting had “committed to complete secrecy,” as the Israeli daily Haaretz reported, the talks ended up being leaked by Australian sources to the Australian daily the Age, which broke the story on the purported Cairo meetings in a little-noticed Oct. 16 report. Israel said today that the meeting had in fact taken place…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=59243

Fundamental Groups Call For Attacking The Al Aqsa Mosque Sunday
Saed Bannoura
October 22, 2009 – A number of fundamental groups in Israel called on their supporters to attack the Al Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem on Sunday as part of a ceremony dedicated to the ‘temple mount’ day. The Al Aqsa foundation issued a press release stating the fundamental groups are planning a ceremony on Sunday evening, and that they would call for breaking into the Al Aqsa mosque in the coming days…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=59236

Pakistan fighting sparks exodus
Aljazeera.net
October 22, 2009 – Tens of thousands of Pakistanis have been forced to leave their homes in South Waziristan as the Pakistani military enagages in fighting with the Taliban. Many people have escaped to neighbouring Dera Ismael Khan, the largest city outside the conflict zone, while about 38,000 ground and air troops are attempting to eliminate about 10,000 Taliban fighters in the region. The exodus from the region has intensified since the ground offensive’s launch six days ago, and more than 100,000 people are said to have been displaced so far…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=59245

General Sir David Richards: five more years of fighting in Afghanistan
James Kirkup,
October 22, 2009 – Sir David, the Chief of the General Staff, said British numbers in Afghanistan are unlikely to fall significantly before 2014. However, he said that Afghan security forces will be much better able to take on Taliban insurgents within two or three years. Britain has 9,000 troops in Afghanistan with another 500 set to be deployed in the coming weeks. After eight years in Afghanistan, 222 British personnel have died in the country, and polls show public support for the mission is waning…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=59237

Book review: Shlomo Sand’s “The Invention of the Jewish People”
Raymond Deane
October 22, 2009 – In 1967 the Palestinian poet Mahmoud Darwish published his poem “A Soldier Dreaming of White Lilies,” only to be accused of “collaboration with the Zionist enemy” for his sympathetic depiction of an Israeli soldier’s remorse of conscience. Forty years later that soldier has identified himself as the historian Shlomo Sand. He has translated his remorse into a book that has become a bestseller in Israel and France, where the award of the Prix Aujourd’hui has made the author something of a TV star…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=59240

Draft of Iran nuclear deal: Start of a thaw in relations with US?
By Howard LaFranchi | Staff writer of The Christian Science Monitor
October 22, 2009 – The tentative agreement reached in Vienna on Wednesday to substantially reduce Iran’s stockpile of low-enriched uranium raises a tantalizing question: After 30 years of hostility, could this be the beginning of a thaw in US-Iranian relations? No one paints the deal as a Nixon-to-China watershed moment that from now on puts relations on positive and constructive footing. But it could nonetheless be the beginning of a shift from a dominant antagonism to an openness to addressing mutual interests, some diplomatic experts say…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=59242

Pakistan fighting sparks exodus
Aljazeera.net
October 22, 2009 – Tens of thousands of Pakistanis have been forced to leave their homes in South Waziristan as the Pakistani military enagages in fighting with the Taliban. Many people have escaped to neighbouring Dera Ismael Khan, the largest city outside the conflict zone, while about 38,000 ground and air troops are attempting to eliminate about 10,000 Taliban fighters in the region. The exodus from the region has intensified since the ground offensive’s launch six days ago, and more than 100,000 people are said to have been displaced so far…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=59245

The Rotten Fruits of War
by Dan Pearson and Kathy Kelly
October 22, 2009 – Five months ago, shortly after the Pakistani government had begun a military offensive against suspected Taliban fighters in the northernmost area of the country, we arrived in Islamabad, the capital, as part of a small delegation organized by Voices for Creative Nonviolence (www.vcnv.org). Our initial travel plans had focused on learning more about civilian suffering caused by U.S. drone attacks. But, over the course of our three-week visit, close to 3 million people had become uprooted by violence in the Swat Valley and neighboring districts. Visiting tent encampments and abandoned buildings to which people had fled, we spoke with people who identified themselves as poor people, with meager resources, who were anxious to return to their homes as soon as possible. They were also alarmed because they feared that their crops, animals, shops and stores were already destroyed. Now that the military offensive in Swat has wound down, Pakistan’s government officials have labeled the operation a success. They claim to have cleared the area of Taliban fighters and have commenced a new military offensive in South Waziristan. A closer look reveals a very different story…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=59225

Australia brokers Israel-Iran nuclear meeting
John Lyons
October 22, 2009 – ISRAEL has confirmed that one of its officials attended Australian-brokered meetings last month over the nuclear issue which included a representative of Iran. An Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman said last night such meetings did occur in Cairo and had been brokered by the Kevin Rudd-established International Commission on Nuclear Non-Proliferation and Disarmament. It was one of the few direct official contacts that an Israeli has had with an Iranian official for decades. The meetings occurred at the Four Seasons Hotel in Cairo and were held in secret…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=59227

Video: Recording West Bank attacks
AlJazeeraEnglish
October 22, 2009 – Some Palestinian farmers in the occupied West Bank are complaining that they are being attacked by Israeli settlers living nearby. To help documenting and reporting the violence, the Israeli human rights group B’Tselem has been handing out small video cameras to farmers and teaching them how to use them. Monthly training sessions are held across the West Bank, with simulated settler attacks…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=59229

Iran, Israel attend secret nuclear meet in Cairo
By Yossi Melman and News Agencies
October 22, 2009 – Israeli and Iranian representatives recently took part in a conference in Cairo on nuclear non-proliferation in the Middle East, the Israel Atomic Energy Commission (IAEC) said Thursday, but Tehran said the report on the meeting was untrue. IAEC Spokeswoman Yael Doron, said, however that “no dialogue or interaction” between the Israeli and Iranian representatives took place at the meeting in Cairo in September. She gave no further details. Iran however dismissed the report, with the spokesman for the Iranian Atomic Organization (IAO) telling the website of state television that “The reports in this regard are sheer lies and there has been no meeting in Cairo.”…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=59211

New jobless claims rise more than expected to 531K
By CHRISTOPHER S. RUGABER (AP)
October 22, 2009 — The number of newly laid-off workers filing claims for jobless benefits rose more than expected last week, as employers remain reluctant to hire even with the economy showing signs of recovery. Claims had fallen in five out of the previous six weeks and most economists expect that trend to continue, but at a slow pace, as jobs remain scarce…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=59222

Did Blackwater attack Islamic University? Students think so
Moin Ansari
October 22, 2009 – A large number of students from different universities of the Capital, on Wednesday, took to the streets against the brutal killing of their colleagues in terrorists’ twin blasts on International Islamic University, Islamabad (IIUI) on Tuesday. They were of the view that the main purpose to target the IIUI was to isolate Pakistan internationally, as more then 56 countries’ students are enrolled in the IIUI, adding that their majority was enrolled in the Faculty of Sharia and Law which was targeted, thereby exposing the intentions of the culprits…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=59228

Rape used as weapon in DR Congo war
AljaeeraEnglish
October 22, 2009 – The Democratic Republic of Congo is grappling with rampant rape, which has become an every day practice and is used as a weapon of war, the UN has said. It said almost 5,400 cases of rape against women were reported in the South Kivu province during the first six months of the year. Elisabeth Byrs, a spokeswoman for the UN Office for the Co-ordination of Humanitarian Affairs, said South Kivu, near Rwanda, was an increasingly dangerous place for civilians, especially for women. “Night-time attacks against civilians by unidentified armed elements, and rape against women, remain widespread,” Byrs said. About 90 per cent of the rapes are allegedly committed by armed groups or regular forces…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=59210

Military aircraft crashes in Afghanistan: official
AFP
October 22, 2009 — A military aircraft crashed on Thursday in a mountainous area of northern Afghanistan, a local official said. “A military aircraft has crashed in the Basgah area on the peak of the Salang mountains, between northern and southern Salang,” Mohammad Asif Qazizada, district governor of Khinjan district, told AFP. “It is not known at this stage to whom the aircraft belongs, exactly what type of aircraft it is, if there were any passengers and who they were.”…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=59226

No way home: The tragedy of the Palestinian diaspora
A special report by Judith Miller and David Samuels
October 22, 2009 – It is a cynical but time-honoured practice in Middle Eastern politics: the statesmen who decry the political and humanitarian crisis of the approximately 3.9 million Palestinians in the Israeli-occupied West Bank and in Gaza ignore the plight of an estimated 4.6 million Palestinians who live in Arab countries. For decades, Arab governments have justified their decision to maintain millions of stateless Palestinians as refugees in squalid camps as a means of applying pressure to Israel. The refugee problem will be solved, they say, when Israel agrees to let the Palestinians have their own state…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=59213

RAPE – A Weapon of MASCULINE Wars.
Layla Anwar, An Arab Woman Blues
October 22, 2009 – Same happened in Iraq by armed Shiite militias from Iran and by US occupying forces. Not much coverage in our case…They kept it hush hush. Love’s collaboration between the US and Iran obliges… FILTH. Rape in Iraq has now become endemic. Hail “Liberation”…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=59217

Iran denies ‘secret Israel talks’
Aljazeera.net
October 22, 2009 – Iran has denied newspaper reports that its officials held secret talks recently with their Israeli counterparts to explore the possibility of declaring the Middle East a nuclear-free zone. The Haaretz on Thursday reported that Meirav Zafary-Odiz, of the Israel Atomic Energy Commission, and Ali Asghar Soltanieh, Iran’s ambassador to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), met several times on September 29 and 30 in Cairo, the Egyptian capital…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=59220

Palestinian civil society letter to Palestinian UN Observer
Various undersigned
…We, the undersigned representatives of Palestinian civil society organisations and international supporters of Palestinian human rights, are deeply concerned that the recommendations contained in the Goldstone Report may not be fully and effectively implemented in a timely manner before the UN General Assembly. We are therefore writing to inquire how civil society might best support your efforts in the coming days to ensure adequate attention is paid to the Report and its recommendations by the UN bodies in New York or by those to whom the New York bodies may refer the report. We understand that the consideration of the agenda item of Palestine will be considered by the Third Committee of the UN General Assembly during meetings on Thursday 29 October…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=59223

After Israelis deny him entry to Gaza, French Foreign Minister invited to visit via Rafah
PNN
October 22, 2009 – French Foreign Minister co-founder of Médecins Sans Frontières, Bernard Kouchner cancelled his trip after the Israeli administration refused to allow him to enter the Gaza Strip after his planned visit to Tel Aviv. Chairman of the Popular Committee against the Siege on Gaza and Palestinian Legislative Council member, Jamal Al Khudari is calling on the good doctor to come to Gaza anyway. He suggests bypassing the Israelis altogether and entering the Strip through the Rafah Crossing with Egypt…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=59218

Lebanon’s refugee waiting room
By Andrew Wander in Beirut
October 22, 2009 – “We thought we would be here for a few months,” says Huda al-Rukun, her red-rimmed eyes flicking around the tiny space she shares with her husband and five children. “No-one believed we would stay this long.” Twenty-three years after they were forced out of the nearby Shatila refugee camp during a particularly bloody phase of the Lebanese civil war known as the War of the Camps, the Palestinian al-Rukun family are one of hundreds still living in a disused hospital in south Beirut. The conflict may have finished 19 years ago, but many of those who fled the fighting have not been allowed back. Rebuilding was only permitted on the original site of camp, so those who had lived in the unofficial settlements attached to Shatila found themselves homeless…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=59219

Afghan Election Officials Replaced En Masse for Second Vote
Runoff May Be Even Less Credible Than August Vote
Jason Ditz
October 22, 2009 – With just two weeks until the planned Afghanistan runoff vote, the United Nations is scramling to make changes in the hopes that the balloting will be at least somewhat less fraud-ridden than the last one. The first move is to oust hundreds of top election officials which were believed to have played a role in the million plus fraudulent ballots casted in August. Other measures are expected, but time is not on their side…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=59224

The Final Stages of a Genocide
Amazon Tribe Down to Five as Oldest Member Dies
by Survival International
October 22, 2009 – The Akuntsu tribe in the Brazilian Amazon has lost its oldest member, Ururú, leaving the tribe with only five surviving members. Ururú was the oldest member of this close-knit, tiny group and an integral part of it.Altair Algayer, head of FUNAI’s (Brazilian government Indian affairs department) team which protects the Akuntsu’s land said, ‘She was a fighter, strong, and resisted until the last moment.’ In addition, the oldest-surviving Akuntsu, Ururú’s brother Konibú, is seriously ill. Ururú witnessed the genocide of her people and the destruction of their rainforest home, as cattle ranchers and their gunmen moved on to indigenous lands in Rondônia state…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=59230

Weekly Report: On Israeli Human Rights Violations in the Occupied Palestinian Territory No. 41/2009 (15 – 21 Oct. 2009)
PCHR – Palestinian Centre for Human Rights
October 22, 2009 – Israeli violations of international law and humanitarian law in the OPT continued during the reporting period (15 – 21 October 2009): Shooting: IOF used force against peaceful demonstrations organized by Palestinian civilians and international and Israeli human rights defenders to protest the construction of the Annexation Wall in the West Bank. As a result, two Palestinian civilians, a French human rights defender and a Canadian journalist were wounded. Incursions: During the reporting period, IOF conducted at least 19 military incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank. IOF arrested 25 Palestinian civilians, including two children…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=59216

UK navy forces to return to Iraq
BBC News
October 22, 2009 – British naval personnel are to return to Iraq to train local forces, Armed Forces Minister Bill Rammell has said. The announcement comes after politicians in Baghdad passed legislation allowing their return. The six-year British military mission in Iraq ended on 30 April this year with all UK personnel withdrawn in July…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=59215

Israel officials ordered to keep mum on reported Iran deal
By Barak Ravid
October 2, 2009 – The national security adviser has instructed all government officials involved in the Iranian nuclear issue not to respond to media reports on a draft agreement between Iran and the West regarding uranium enrichment in Russia. Uzi Arad, who heads the National Security Council, issued the directive to officials in the Foreign Ministry, the Atomic Energy Commission, the Defense Ministry and the Israel Defense Forces. A senior political source in Jerusalem said the directive was issued because Israel wishes to ascertain the details of the draft agreement and to ensure media reports on the deal are accurate…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=59221

Comrade Jarrar: Comrade Sa’adat continues to boycott the occupation courts as actions escalate
Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine -PFLP
October 22, 2009 – Comrade Ahmad Sa’adat, the imprisoned General Secretary of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, will continue to reject the illegitimate Zionist courts as those courts consider his over six months of isolation in the occupation prisons, said Comrade Khalida Jarrar, member of the Political Bureau of the PFLP, at a press conference on October 20, 2009 in Ramallah marking a national day of action for Comrade Sa’adat and all Palestinian prisoners…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=59214

Israeli warplanes strike Gaza
Ma’an News
October 22, 2009 – The Israeli military said its warplanes bombed two smuggling tunnels in the southern Gaza Strip and a building that it alleged was used to produce weapons near Gaza City early on Thursday morning. No injuries were reported in the strikes. The Israeli military spokesperson also said that it verified that the targets were accurately hit…

Read the full article / Leggi l’articolo completo: www.uruknet.de/?p=59212

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