Adonis Diaries

Archive for June 29th, 2018

Tidbits from Lamis Bejjani: Car bombs were current tactics in Lebanon civil war starting in 1975

late martyr 3imad Moghniyyeh uncovered the dozens of assassinations during Lebanon civil war.

’كن القاتل..’ ولو بعد حين!

مع إندلاع الحرب ـ حرب السنتين ـ 1975 ـ 1976، تحول لبنان إلى مسرح لعمليات القتل المنظم، واستمرت بوتيرة متصاعدة، يومها كانت السيارات المفخخة أبرز أساليبها.

ويومها أيضاً، كما في كل تاريخه كان للحاج عماد مغنية دور في فضح القطبة المخفية في هذا النسق من العمليات المتنقلة بين مختلف المناطق اللبنانية.

يومها أيضاً وأيضاً أنجز الحاج رضوان تقريره الأمني ووضعه أمام كل المعنيين، كاشفاً الدور الإسرائيلي ـ الأميركي والتمويل السعودي في كل تلك العمليات، ولا بأس أن نذّكر اللبنانيين بموجز سريع عن هذا الملف.

*البداية*

بعد أقل من عام على تفجير بئر العبد الشهير في 8 آذار/ مارس من العام 1985، كشف الحاج رضوان تفاصيله بالأسماء والتواريخ وكشف معها تفاصيل لأكثر من 22 تفجيراً حصلوا خلال الأعوام الأربعة التي سبقت العملية وهي:

ـ 1981 : تفجير سينما سلوى.
ـ 1982 : تفجير محلات مكتبي.
ـ 1982 : تفجير سوق الروشة.
ـ 1982 : تفجير الدار الاسلامية.
ـ 1982 : تفجير في الأوزاعي.
ـ 1982 : تفجير سينما سلوى مجدداً.
ـ 1982 : تفجير السفارة المصرية.
ـ 1982 : تفجير مطعم أبو النواس.
ـ 1982 : تفجير مكب للنفايات قرب مكتب لحركة امل في المصيطبة.
ـ 1983 : تفجير ABC .
ـ 1983 : تفجير مكتب منظمة التحرير الفلسطينية.
ـ 1983 : تفجير سوبر ماركت سميث.
ـ 1983 : تفجير في شارع التلفزيون.
ـ 1984 : نفجير في منطقة عائشة بكار.
ـ 1984 : تفجير محلات الشيخ موسى.
ـ 1984 : تفجير سيارة في أول شارع صبرا.
ـ 1985 : تفجير مبنى مهجور في محلة البيكاديلي.
ـ 1985 : تفجير بار كانون لايت في جان دارك.
ـ 1985 : تفجير بنك الرافدين.
ـ 1985 : تفجير أمام مسجد الإمام علي بن أبي طالب في الطريق الجديدة.
ـ 1985 : تفجير محطة الزهيري في وطى المصيطبة.

وكذلك عاد إلى ما سبق هذه التواريخ فكشف عن سلسلة تفجيرات مرتبطة بملف الأحزاب والقيادادت والشخصيات فكانت المفاجآت بالأسماء والمراكز وهي على الشكل التالي:

في الضاحية الجنوبية في العام 1985 وبفارق أسبوع تم تفجير قاعدة الشهيد بلال فحص في الرويس، وبعد ذلك وضعت متفجرتان في منطقة حي ماضي إحداهما في سيارة مفخخة والثانية في طرد يحمل عبوة ناسفة.

في بيروت (الغربية) تفجير الجامعة العربية، ومحاولة اغتيال وليد بيك جنبلاط، وتفجير مركز الأبحاث الفلسطيني، تفجير فندق السمرلاند، تفجير جريدة السبيل، محاولة اغتيال سليم الحص و تفجير دار الطائفة الدرزية في عائشة بكار.

في طرابلس اغتيال الدكتور عصمت مراد، وتفجير مسجد الإمام علي(ع) في منطقة التل.

الملاحظ في كل تلك التفجيرات هو الهوية الطائفية للمناطق المستهدفة، سنية، شيعية ودرزية.. لزرع الفتنة بينها.

*فضح الدور الاسرائيلي في لبنان*

قبل أيام أعادت صحيفة “نيويورك تايمز” نشر فصول من كتاب “انهض.. واقتل أولاً: التاريخ السرّي لاغتيالات إسرائيل الموجّهة”، للكاتب “الاسرائيلي” في الشؤون الامنية “رونن بيرغمان”، والصديق الشخصي لرئيس الموساد السابق “مائير داغان”،

كشف فيه تأسيس رئيس الأركان ـ في حينه ـ الجنرال رفاييل إيتان، بالتنسيق مع قائد المنطقة الشمالية الجنرال “أفيغدور بن غال”، لمنظمة سرية تدعى “جبهة تحرير لبنان من الأجانب” أوكلت مهمة قيادتها لـ “مئير داغان” الذي تولى لاحقاً منصب رئيس “الموساد”.

هدف المنظمة بحسب الكاتب “خلق فوضى بين الفلسطينيين والسوريين في لبنان، دون ترك بصمات إسرائيلية، ليتولد لديهم الانطباع بأنهم مهاجمون”. وقد عمد داغان لـ “تجنيد بعض اللبنانيين، الناقمين على الفلسطينيين. فقتلت الجبهة بين الـ1979 و1982 مئات الأشخاص”.

فصول هذا الكتاب جاءت لتؤكد النتائج التي كشفها الحاج رضوان في تحقيقاته، سيما وأن الكاتب يؤكد ارتفاع وتيرة استخدام السيارات المفخخة بعد تعيين أرييل شارون وزيراً للحرب في 5 آب/ أغسطس من العام 1981 أي قبل الاجتياح الصهيوني للبنان بعام.. لتشكل موجة التفجيرات ضغط على المقاومة الفلسطينية فترد عليها باستهداف الأراضي المحتلة، فيأتي التبرير لشن الاجتياح.

*وصية التلمود*

الكتاب المكون من 750 صفحة، حمل في طياته وصية تلمودية تقول: “إذا جاء أحدهم لقتلك ، انهض واقتله أولاً”. إضافة لوصية من “داغان” نفسه.. ـ كان يحتفظ في مكتبه بصورة لجده الملتحي والمؤتزر بشال الصلاة ، راكعاً أمام القوات الألمانية” ـ “يجب ألا نصل إلى هذا الوضع مرة أخرى ، نركع ، دون القدرة على القتال من أجل حياتنا”.

القتل ثم القتل..هذه عادتهم والتبرير كالعادة أنهم “الأخيار”.. يقتلون الاطفال والنساء والرجال ويهربون من مواجهة المقاومين

يحتلون الأرض..ويدعون أنهم أصحابها..ويعاونهم الأذناب.. مهما طال الزمن ستنتهي اسطورتهم وسيرحلون، وسنصلي في القدس التي حضّر لتحريرها قائد الفاتحين لها عماد فايز مغنية.

*​​#الحديدة_مقبرة_الغزاة​​*
*​​#عزيز_يا_يمن​​*

Who’s Really Crossing the U.S. Border, and Why They’re Coming

By Stephanie Leutert.  Saturday, June 23, 2018, 10:04 AM

Central American migrants riding freight trains through Mexico (Flickr/Peter Haden)

Over the past week, the separation of 2,000 children from their parents along the U.S. border has forced immigration into the national spotlight.

President Trump, who initiated the separations and then sought to quash criticism with a muddled executive order, has portrayed the policy as a harsh but necessary measure to stop a wave of migrants “bringing death and destruction” into the United States.

At another point, he claimed that migrants want to “pour in and infest our country,” linking those crossing the border to the gang MS-13.

Despite what the president says, the situation at the border is much more nuanced.

There’s not a flood of people racing across the border.

The majority of migrants aren’t dangerous criminals. Many are women and families—and many are fleeing gang violence rather than seeking to spread that violence farther north.

For the past two years, I’ve worked to document these issues at the Strauss Center for International Security and Law at the University of Texas at Austin, and also in the Beyond the Border column for Lawfare—based in part on my fieldwork from across Mexico.

There are few straightforward and easy answers to what often feel like basic questions for Central American migration. So it’s worth taking a step back and asking: who are the people arriving at the border? Why are they coming? And how does the current situation compare to migration in the past?

First off, while the current administration has tried to tie Central American migrants to MS-13, government data reveals that gang members crossing irregularly are the rare exceptions.

Since the Trump administration took office, the Border Patrol has detected fewer gang members crossing irregularly than during the Obama administration. (Gangs have to get more careful with tighter rhetoric)

In FY2017, these detection amounted to 0.075 percent of the total number of migrants (228 MS-13 members out of 303,916 total migrants).

When combined with MS-13’s rival, the Barrio 18 gang, the number rises only slightly to 0.095 percent. This is far from the “infestation” of violent gang members described by the president.

The current crisis hasn’t been caused by a sudden influx of migration, either.

The peak in apprehensions of irregular migrants actually took place some 17 years ago, in FY2000. At that point, U.S. Border Patrol agents caught 1,643,679 migrants attempting to enter the United States without the appropriate papers, compared to 303,916 apprehensions in this past fiscal year.

But this decreasing number of apprehensions should not be confused with a gentler, kinder approach to border security—in fact, just the opposite.

Since 2001, the number of Border Patrol agents along the southwest border has nearly doubled from 9,147 agents to 16,605. Border fencing also increased: to date, there are 705 miles of fencing along the 2,000-mile long U.S.-Mexico border.

The face of migration has also changed.

Back in 2000, Mexican nationals made up 98 percent of the total migrants and Central Americans (referring to Honduran, Guatemalan, and Salvadoran migrants) only one percent.

Today, Central Americans (Not Mexican) make up closer to 50% of migrants. (Due primarily to US multinationals controlling these smaller States and spreading poverty. Even water is privatized by these companies and pollution is at its zenith)

 

Total U.S. Border Apprehensions by Nationality

Nationality was only made available from FY1995 through FY2017. U.S. Customs and Border Protection, FOIA request.

A declining Mexican birth rate, a stable economy, and the U.S. border buildup have all contributed to the decrease in migration from Mexico.

But as Mexican irregular migration has plummeted, Central American migration has simultaneously picked up.

Until 2011, Central Americans constituted less than 10% of total U.S.-Mexico border apprehensions, but by 2012 they constituted 25 percent, and by 2014 they numbered half of all illicit border crossers.

While migration from each country within the Northern Triangle (El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras) has fluctuated over time, each country has sent roughly similar numbers of people in the aggregate.

From FY1995 to FY2016, the U.S. Border Patrol apprehended around 500,000 citizens from each country. In other words, it’s not a coincidence that most recent news stories about migrant parents separated from their children feature families from Honduras, Guatemala, and El Salvador.

 

Central Americans as a Percent of Total Southwest Border Apprehensions

U.S. Customs and Border Protection, FOIA request.

Yet there’s no one simple description of a migrant. Across the U.S. political spectrum, politicians and activists present Central American migrants as either dreamers or law-breakers; those fleeing violence or those abusing immigration loopholes; crying toddlers or MS-13 gangsters.

These labels force migrants into rigid categories, losing the diversity of their reasons and their wide-ranging demographics and backgrounds.

To understand Central American migrants means first abandoning the depiction of the “Northern Triangle” of Central America as a homogeneous region. All three countries have different histories and contemporary political realities, along with varying security and development indicators that help explain today’s situation. Using the World Bank’s measure, Honduras has the highest levels of poverty, with 30 percent of the population living at US$3.20 a day or less, compared to Guatemala (25 percent), and El Salvador (ten percent). Meanwhile, two thirds of Salvadorans live in cities, compared to 55 percent of Hondurans and closer to 50 percent of Guatemalans. Finally, Guatemala’s authorities report that 40 percent of the population is indigenous, versus closer to 10 percent in Honduras, and an almost non-existent indigenous population in El Salvador (0.2 percent). These factors help explain what moves migrants from each country to travel to the United States.

Take the following map, which illustrates the hometowns of Central American migrant families apprehended at the border (as reported by the U.S. Border Patrol) from 2012-2017. In Honduras, most families report that they are coming from major cities, such as San Pedro Sula and Tegucigalpa; the situation is similar in El Salvador, with migrants hailing from San Salvador and San Miguel. This urbanization matters: these cities have high levels of urban gang violence, committed by MS-13 and Barrio 18. These groups have divided control of the cities up into a patchwork quilt and earn the majority of their money from local-level extortion.

 

Hometowns of Apprehended Central American Family Units

U.S. Customs and Border Protection, FOIA request.

 

For Central American residents, control of these gangs over their neighborhood likely means a weekly or monthly extortion payment simply for the right to operate a business or live in their territory. The price for failing to provide this money is death. All it takes is a neighbor or nearby shopkeeper to be gunned down for failing to pay the adequate fees, and it becomes clear that the only options are pay or flee. Parents may also send their children to the United States or take them north as the gangs try to recruit them into their activities: Boys of eleven years old (or younger) may be recruited as lookouts and teenage girls may be eyed for becoming the members’ “girlfriends.” Older women who date or at one point dated a gang member can become trapped and unable to escape the violence, with partner-violence a driving migratory factor for many women.

While the gang activities and gender-based violence can empty out neighborhoods, they are not the only factors driving outward migration from these cities. Across the region’s larger cities, LGBT migrants are fleeing discrimination and violence. At a recent trip to a migrant shelter in southern Mexico, I listened as the shelter’s director recounted the story of a father and teenage son who had fled Guatemala City only a few weeks prior: the father was afraid that his son would be killed for coming out as gay. It is not an idle threat. Since 2009, 264 LGBT people in Honduras have been murdered. The La 72 shelter in Tenosique, Tabasco even has a building in the shelter dedicated to providing specialized housing for LGBT migrants.

Among migrants leaving Guatemala, some are fleeing gangs or societal violence in cities, but many migrant families and unaccompanied children come from the Guatemalan highlands, which are more rural, agriculture-based, indigenous, and have lower rates of violence (defined by homicides) than other parts of the country. In asylum proceedings in the United States, women and children from this region frequently cite endemic family and domestic violence, and neglect from the local police who cannot speak their languages or do not answer their phone calls. These areas have also been buffeted by a changing climate, frequent natural disasters, and droughts. And the poverty in these regions leaves residents with little ability for resilience in the face of unpredictable rains or external events.

Without an ability to live safely or prosperously in Central America, residents begin looking to head north to the United States. That means coming up with the US$6,000 to $10,000 necessary for hiring a smuggler. To obtain this money, residents may sell their land or property, rely on the generosity of friends or family in the United States, or borrow money from local loan sharks and leave their farms and property as collateral. This latter option has its own consequences: migrants who use loan sharks and then are detected and deported by Mexican or U.S. officials are unable to pay back the loans, losing their lands in the process and becoming displaced once again.

Once the migrants have found a way to raise the money—or if they set out without a smuggler—then they will begin their journey through Mexico. Their mode of transportation and experience will depend heavily on the amount of money that they have, the smuggler’s modus operandi, and whether they plan to seek asylum or try to pass between ports of entry undetected into the United States. Migrants often find smugglers through recommendations from friends and family and they choose between various services on a sliding scale of prices. Migrants with significant amounts of money could choose to take planes to the U.S.-Mexico border and cross in to the country on fake documents; migrants with less money may pay to ride in a trailer through Mexico or take buses through the country; and those without any money at all will walk or ride on the roof of the trains that pass through Mexico.

These routes also change based on Central America’s geography. Hondurans generally enter Mexico closer to the Gulf Coast, Salvadorans enter along the Pacific coast, and Guatemalans enter more frequently through crossing points in between. While the image of migrants riding Mexico’s train network dominates the migration narrative, this is far from the only way to reach the United States. Surveys by researchers from El Colegio de la Frontera Norte (COLEF) of Central Americans who were recently deported by U.S. authorities give a sense of these routes’ diversity. In 2017, roughly 40 percent of Hondurans reported riding the train and 40 percent said that they traveled in a tractor trailer at one point in their journey. However, Guatemalan and Salvadoran migrants reported taking these two means of transportation at much lower levels. In fact, only one percent of Salvadorans and eight percent of Guatemalans said that they had ridden the train at any point during their trip through Mexico, and instead reported primarily taking buses through the country.

The journey across Mexico is not, as Trump commented on Thursday, “like … walking through Central Park.” Migrants are extorted, robbed, assaulted, raped, kidnapped, and murdered at alarmingly high levels and with almost complete impunity. The perpetrators vary by geographic area, including MS-13 and Barrio 18 in the southern part of Mexico (the very gangs that many are escaping); larger criminal groups such as the Zetas and Gulf Cartel in the northern parts of the country such as Tamaulipas; local kidnapping rings and bandits throughout the territory; and even municipal, state, and federal migratory and public security authorities. A 2017 Doctors Without Borders report noted that 68 percent of the migrants that it provided services to in shelters across Mexico had been the victim of a crime during the journey. Women and children are also at particular risk, with nearly one-third of the women reporting that they were sexually assaulted during their trip through Mexico.

And many Central American migrants are female—many more than the Mexican migrants who came before them. While female Mexican migrants averaged around 13 percent of all Mexican migrants apprehended by the Border Patrol from FY1995 through FY2017, Central American women averaged between 20 and 32 percent. In recent years these numbers have increased even more, with women constituting 48 percent of all Salvadoran migrants in the last fiscal year and Honduran women reaching 43 percent of migrants from their country.

 

Percent of Female Central American and Mexican Migrants

U.S. Customs and Border Protection, FOIA request.

 

This change is even more dramatic when looking at families and unaccompanied minors. While these groups make up a small proportion of Mexican migrants overall, in recent years, Central American families and unaccompanied children have constituted on average between 40 and 60 percent of the migrants from Central America arriving to the United States. The numbers of unaccompanied children peaked in FY2014 and have since declined slightly, while the number of families arriving at the border—particularly from Honduras and Guatemala—has remained steady.

 

Apprehended Unaccompanied Minors and Families Along the Southwest Border

U.S. Customs and Border Protection, https://www.cbp.gov/newsroom/stats/sw-border-migration.

 

In other words, the families that the Trump administration has focused on separating make up an increasingly high proportion of the migrants who reach the U.S. border.

Previously, many migrants would seek to reach the United States by hiking through the desert undetected. But in recent years, families have begun crossing the border and waiting for a Border Patrol agent, or showing up at ports of entry, to ask for asylum. Before the Trump administration’s recent immigration crackdown, these families would be then taken to a family detention center, where they would have to pass a “credible fear” interview to be released—that is, prove that they have a real fear of returning to their home countries. At least 77 percent of the families pass this hurdleand are released with an ankle monitor or after paying a bond. They can then begin their cases in immigration courts.

The Trump administration is looking to shake up this system. Under the current policy and the June 20th executive order, the administration is pushing to detain families together for months, if not years, while their cases are processed. However, this flies in the face of the Flores settlement, a 1997 consent decree that courts have found to require that children not be detained for more than 20 days. The administration is now seeking to modify the settlement, a gambit that seems unlikely to succeed given the deciding judge’s previous rulings on the matter against the Obama administration.

 

U.S. Asylum Cases Received by the Executive Office of Immigration Review

Executive Office of Immigration Review, U.S. Department of Justice, https://www.justice.gov/eoir/file/asylum-statistics/download.

 

At the moment, the Trump administration’s policy is in flux. It’s not clear what will happen if the judge declines to amend the Flores settlement. Yet according to Politico, the administration focus on detaining adults indefinitely has hit it’s own wall—a casualty of insufficient resources on the part of the government. And while the Border Patrol has announced plans to return to their parents the children who are in its custody, there are still thousands of migrant children separated from their parents and families that remain in gut-wrenching uncertainty.

Even in the best of situations, the current arrival of tens of thousands of Central American migrants at the U.S.-Mexico border would bring its own challenges: addressed effectively, it would require rethinking and shifting resources within the United States’ immigration and asylum systems to better process not just single adults but also mothers and fathers with toddlers and teenagers, who are in need of special protections. But despite the administration’s claims to the contrary, the numbers of Central Americans arriving at the border are not near the all-time highs, and there is no infestation or invasion of MS-13. What the data shows instead is something far less dramatic: men, women, families, and children who are arriving to seek safety and the basic American dream of a better life.

Part 1. Poultry farm is Carmel settlement gets more water and electricity than all neighboring Palestinian villages

Umm al-Kheir: A Bedouin Community Struggles to Survive in the Face of Israeli Aggression

And the Settlement of Carmel

November 24th, 2017

Eid Suleiman Hathaleen’s job is to locate unexploded mines in the rugged hills in the southern part of the Israeli-occupied West Bank. His life at home is, however, much more stressful.

Eid, thirty-four, lives in Umm al-Kheir, a small Palestinian hamlet south of Hebron.

For years, Umm al-Kheir has been under attack by both the Israeli army and Israeli settlers from the nearby settlement of Carmel. Recently, the situation has worsened considerably.

“We expect the bulldozers to come any day to demolish our homes,” Eid tells Muftah. “The authorities promised they wouldn’t demolish during Ramadan [May 26 – June 24], but since then they have demolished in other villages,” says Eid’s cousen, Tariq Hathaleen, twenty-four.

Israeli authorities engage in home demolitions all over the West Bank and occupied East Jerusalem.

According to the Israeli NGO Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions, the Israeli government has demolished nearly 50,000 Palestinian structures since 1967.

Home demolitions violate humanitarian law, which applies to Israel’s occupation of Palestinian territory.

Article 53 of the Fourth Geneva Convention states:

“Any destruction by the Occupying Power of real or personal property belonging individually or collectively to private persons, or to the State, or to other public authorities, or to social or cooperative organizations, is prohibited, except where such destruction is rendered absolutely necessary by military operations.”

Umm al-Kheir

Translated as “Mother of Goodness,” Umm al-Kheir is a collection of dilapidated shacks, tents, water tanks, and animal pens. Its tallest structure is an enclosure that houses pigeons.

The village does not have running water and is not connected to the power grid.

Its meager electricity supply comes from a few solar panels donated by international NGOs.

Caption: The village of Umm al-Kheir in the West Bank. Credit: Cody O’Rourke

The poverty of Umm al-Kheir stands in stark contrast to the wealth of the illegal Israeli settlement of Carmel, located a few dozen feet away. It is so close an effort has to be made not to notice the settlement’s yellow stucco houses—complete with air-conditioning, drip-irrigation gardens, and goldfish ponds—on the other side of the fence that divides the two communities.

At night, one can see and hear the settlers in their living rooms.

Caption: The settlement of Carmel. Credit: Richard Hardigan

The difference between the settlers’ standard of living and that of the people of Umm al-Kheir is perhaps best exemplified by the nearby poultry barn, which the settlers of Carmel run as a business.

As Israeli human rights activist Elad Orian told Nicolas Kristof of The New York Times in 2010, “those chickens get more water and electricity than all the Palestinians around here.”

The residents of Umm al-Kheir are Bedouins from the Hathaleen clan.

The family is part of the larger Jahaleen tribe, which was expelled from the Negev desert (in what is now Israel) in 1948. Initially, the Hathaleen were nomads in the South Hebron Hills; they eventually settled down in their current location in 1961.

When the Hathaleen first arrived, the West Bank was under Jordanian control. “In 1961 our grandfather paid 100 camels to buy all of this land from the village of Yatta,” Eid says. The clan still has Jordanian papers proving its ownership of the land.

At first, Israel’s 1967 occupation of the West Bank did not change life for the Hathaleen. “Israel was not interested in this area, and things were peaceful,” says Eid. “That changed when Israel began to build a line of settlements in the West Bank.”

Settlements in the West Bank

Since it is against international law for an occupying power to transfer its own population into occupied territory, Israel’s settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem are considered by the international community—including the United States—to be illegal, though Israel disputes this claim.

The settlements are a major stumbling block to peace between Israel and the Palestinians. According to Israeli NGO B’Tselem, there are currently 127 settlements in the West Bank, in addition to fifteen neighborhoods in East Jerusalem.

600,000 settlers reside in the West Bank and another 200,000 in East Jerusalem.

In addition to the official settlements, there are roughly 100 outposts, which are not recognized by the Israeli government, but are supported financially by various governmental agencies and often protected by the Israeli army.

For the most part, the settlers fall into two camps.

Some are there to take advantage of the financial incentives—such as reduced housing costs—offered by the government to those residing in the settlements. Others choose to live in the settlements for ideological or religious reasons. Many of those in the South Hebron Hills, where Carmel is located, fall into the latter category, and believe they are doing God’s work by taking over the land.

The South Hebron Hills are part of Area C, a designation created under the Oslo Accords. Area C, which makes up 62% of the West Bank, is under full Israeli control.

In Area C, settlers have access to much more land than the Palestinians.

According to a 2015 report by the United Nations’ Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), the average settler in Area C is allocated more than 13-times more land than a Palestinian – roughly 8500 square feet per settler and 650 square feet per Palestinian.

The Settlement of Carmel

In 1980, Israel built an army base on Umm al-Kheir’s land. Two years later, it was converted into the settlement of Carmel.

“At first, there was no trouble with the settlers,” Eid says. “They did not show their evil.” But the situation changed in the early 2000’s with the outbreak of the Second Intifada.

“The settlers would often throw stones,” says Eid. “A woman wandered too close to the settlement, and they shot at her. They beat another woman who was grazing her sheep.”

In 2004, Carmel’s head of security attacked Tariq’s brother, Muhammad, while he was tending his sheep. “He beat him with the butt of his rifle while other settlers held back the villagers who wanted to help him,” Tariq’s brother, Bilal, told writer Ben Ehrenreich.[1]Thirteen years later, Muhammad still suffers from severe mental disabilities, as a result of the attack.

“If you want to speak with Muhammad, he will run from you. He is always afraid,” says Eid. “He is a victim of the conflict.” The settler was never held accountable for his actions, and still lives in Carmel.

“We see him sometimes,” says Tariq angrily. “If I were an atheist, I would kill myself. I have to know that these people will be punished in the afterlife.” Eid sees things differently, saying he has good relations with at least one settler. “Sometimes, if one of our goats escapes across the fence, I call him, and we can get the goat back,” he says.

For the last two months, the settlers have been throwing rocks at Umm al-Kheir on a daily basis. It happens in the middle of the night—on some occasions several times a night—and the rocks make a great deal of noise when they land on the corrugated tin roofs of the village’s houses.

It makes it difficult for residents to sleep, and it frightens the children. No effort has been made by the army, the police, or the settlement coordinators to put an end to this activity, even though they have been continuously notified.

Self service requires information, which requires design

Consider travel as an example:

If you’ve arranged the flights on the monitor in order of flight time, not destination, requiring me to stop and take out my ticket, you have failed.

If you’ve hidden the room numbers (or given them fancy names) so that only an employee can find the right spot, you’ve failed as well.

The label on prescription drugs, the instructions post-doctor visit, the manual for using software or putting together furniture–if we’re getting rid of service and turning it into self-service, we owe it to our newly deputized employees (our customers) to give them the tools they need to not need us.

Sure, you need someone in charge of customer service.

But you also need someone in charge of service design.

Someone responsible for fixing what’s broken, not merely apologizing for it again and again.

It’s not cheap, but it’s way cheaper than answering the phone or annoying the people who pay our bills.

Tried and yet false if no longer working?

The tried and true is beyond reproach. It’s been tried, and of course, it’s true.

True because it worked.

In times of change, though, most of the tried is in fact, false. False because what used to work, doesn’t, at least not any longer.

Sure, it might be what you’ve always done. But that doesn’t make it true, or right, or best. It just means that you already tried it.

The nature of revolutions is that they destroy the perfect and enable the impossible. Seeking out the tried and true is the wrong direction for crazy times.

Posted by Seth Godin on June 02, 2013


adonis49

adonis49

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