Adonis Diaries

Archive for June 21st, 2013

Palestinian children tortured, used as shields by Israel: U.N.

A United Nations human rights body accused Israeli forces on June 20, 2013 of mistreating Palestinian children, including by torturing those in custody and using others as human shields.

Palestinian children in the Gaza and the West Bank, captured by Israel in the 1967 war, are routinely denied registration of their birth and access to health care, decent schools and clean water, the U.N. Committee on the Rights of the Child said.

Reporting by Stephanie Nebehay in Geneva and Allyn Fisher-Ilan in Jerusalem; Editing by Alistair Lyon (Reuters)-

“Palestinian children arrested by (Israeli) military and police are systematically subject to degrading treatment, and often to acts of torture, are interrogated in Hebrew, a language they did not understand, and sign confessions in Hebrew in order to be released,” it said in a report.

The Israeli Foreign Ministry said it had responded to a report by the U.N. children’s agency UNICEF in March on ill-treatment of Palestinian minors and questioned whether the U.N. committee’s investigation covered new ground.

“If someone simply wants to magnify their political bias and political bashing of Israel, not based on a new report, on work on the ground, but simply recycling old stuff, there is no importance in that,” spokesman Yigal Palmor said.

The report by the U.N. Committee on the Rights of the Child acknowledged Israel’s national security concerns and noted that children on both sides of the conflict continue to be killed and wounded, but that more casualties are Palestinian.

Most Palestinian children arrested are accused of having thrown stones, an offence which can carry a penalty of up to 20 years in prison, the committee said.

Israeli soldiers had testified to the often arbitrary nature of the arrests.

The watchdog’s 18 independent experts examined Israel’s record of compliance with a 1990 treaty as part of its regular review of a pact signed by all nations except Somalia and the United States. An Israeli delegation attended the session.

The U.N. committee regretted Israel’s “persistent refusal” to respond to requests for information on children in the Palestinian territories and occupied Syrian Golan Heights since the last review in 2002.

“DISPROPORTIONATE”

Hundreds of Palestinian children have been killed and thousands injured over the reporting period as a result of the state party military operations, especially in Gaza where the state party proceeded to (conduct) air and naval strikes on densely populated areas with a significant presence of children, thus disregarding the principles of proportionality and distinction,” the report said.

Israel battled a Palestinian uprising during part of the 10-year period examined by the committee.

It withdrew its troops and settlers from the Gaza Strip in 2006, but still blockades the Hamas-run enclave, from where Palestinian militants have sometimes fired rockets into Israel.

During the 10-year period, an estimated 7,000 Palestinian children aged 12 to 17, but some as young as nine, had been arrested, interrogated and detained, the U.N. report said.

Many are brought in leg chains and shackles before military courts, while youths are held in solitary confinement, sometimes for months, the report said.

It voiced deep concern at the “continuous use of Palestinian children as human shields and informants”, saying 14 such cases had been reported between January 2010 and March 2013 alone.

Israeli soldiers had used Palestinian children to enter potentially dangerous buildings before them and to stand in front of military vehicles to deter stone-throwing, it said.

“Almost all those using children as human shields and informants have remained unpunished and the soldiers convicted for having forced at gunpoint a nine-year-old child to search bags suspected of containing explosives only received a suspended sentence of three months and were demoted,” it said.

Israel’s “illegal long-standing occupation” of Palestinian territory and the Syrian Golan Heights, continued expansion of “unlawful” Jewish settlements, construction of the Wall into the West Bank, land confiscation and destruction of homes and livelihoods “constitute severe and continuous violations of the rights of Palestinian children and their families”, it said.

Israel disputes the international position that its settlements in the West Bank are illegal. It says the wall it built there during the uprising stopped Palestinian suicide bombers from reaching its cities.

In March, Palmor, the Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman, had said that officials from the ministry and the military had cooperated with UNICEF in its work on the report, with the goal of improving the treatment of Palestinian minors in custody.

“Israel will study the conclusions and will work to implement them through ongoing cooperation with UNICEF, whose work we value and respect,” he said, in response to the UNICEF report.

 

Are Books the door to truth?

Seth Godin posted: “I get it”

“No need to read the whole book, I can just glance over the Cliffs Notes… I get it.

I don’t need to hear your entire pitch, just show me the summary slide… got it.

No, I already heard about your vacation… remember, I saw the Instagram feed.

Why would I go out with him? I read his match.com profile.

You’re probably smart enough to ‘get it’ merely by reading the 140 character summary of just about anything.

But of course, that doesn’t mean you understand it, or that it changed you. All it means is that you were quickly able to sort it into an appropriate category, to make a decision about where it belongs in your mental filing cabinet.

The best experiences and the biggest ideas don’t fit into a category. They change it. They don’t get filed away, they transform us.

It’s entirely possible that you can process and file more information than anyone who has come before you.

And quite likely that this filing is preventing you from growing and changing and confronting the fear that’s holding you back.

You get it? No you don’t. Not yet. Because all you’ve gotten is a tweet.

Read the book. The whole thing. Use the product. A few times. More than a few times.

Immersed. It can change you.”

(And post a review of what you read, the story and how it impacted on you…)

The essential confrontation is with yourself. You should be your own biggest critic

It’s not between you and your boss, your critics, your editor, your competition, your spouse or some other outsider.

Hay Festival celebrates the openness of the imagination.

Hanif Kureishi: “Books are the door to truth… There’s always a temptation to be fearful and to hate, but it’s too narrow, it’s too boring.

Think of fascism. In the end, people tire of it, in the end, fascism blows itself up. People cannot live in it for a long time.

Fascism is always destroyed, because people wish for a bigger life. And to me that’s what literature represents. And that’s a form of love.

Imagination and creativity come from love because it’s a form of real exchange.”
Hanif and Joe Sacco speak at length in the festival, Cristina Fuentes La Roche explains it well here.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=EX15LWnmtxA

Note: If what you are reading are not catalyst to trying to write, change the category of books you are reading.

 


adonis49

adonis49

adonis49

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