Adonis Diaries

Posts Tagged ‘Palestinian Authority

Can you Guess from which town the Third Palestinian Intifada (mass civil disobedience) Will Start?

South of the village of Nabi Saleh, you can see the red roofs of Halamish, an Israeli settlement on the hilltop across the valley. This settlement was founded in 1977 by members of the messianic nationalist group Gush Emunim, and growing steadily since on land that once belonged to residents of Nabi Saleh and another Palestinian village.

Next to Halamish is an Israeli military base, and in the valley between Nabi Saleh and the settlement, across the highway and up a dirt path, a small freshwater spring, which Palestinians had long called Ein al-Kos, bubbles out of a low stone cliff.

In the summer of 2008,the youth of Halamish began building the first of a series of low pools that collect its waters. Later they added a bench and an arbor for shade.

The land surrounding the spring has for generations belonged to the family of Bashir Tamimi, now 57 of age,

(Years after, the settlers retroactively applied for a building permit, which Israeli authorities refused to issue, ruling that “the applicants did not prove their rights to the relevant land.” Recently, several of the structures have been removed.)

When Palestinians came to tend to their crops in the fields beside it, the settlers, villagers said, threatened and threw stones at them.

It took the people of Nabi Saleh more than a year to get themselves organized.

In December 2009 they held their first march, protesting not just the loss of the spring but also the entire complex system of control — of permits, checkpoints, walls, prisons — through which Israel maintains its hold on the region.

Nabi Saleh quickly became the most spirited of the dozen or so West Bank villages that hold weekly demonstrations against the Israeli occupation. Since the demonstrations began, more than 100 people in the village have been jailed.

Ben Ehrenreich wrote:

“On the evening of Feb. 10, the living room of Bassem Tamimi’s house in the West Bank village of Nabi Saleh was filled with friends and relatives smoking and sipping coffee, waiting for Bassem to return from prison. His oldest son, Waed, 16, was curled on the couch with his 6-year-old brother, Salam, playing video games on the iPhone that the prime minister of Turkey had given their sister, Ahed.

Ahed had been flown to Istanbul to receive an award after photos of her shaking her fist at an armed Israeli soldier won her, at age 11, a brief but startling international celebrity. Their brother Abu Yazan, who is 9, was on a tear in the yard, wrestling with an Israeli activist friend of Bassem’s.

Nariman, the children’s mother, crouched in a side room, making the final preparations for her husband’s homecoming meal, laughing at the two photographers competing for shots from the narrow doorway as she spread onions onto oiled flat-breads.

On the living-room wall was a “Free Bassem Tamimi” poster, left over from his last imprisonment for helping to organize the village’s weekly protests against the Israeli occupation, which he has done since 2009.

Bassem was gone for 13 monthsto prison that time, released for 5 months before he was arrested again in October. A lot happened during this latest stint: another brief war in Gaza, a vote in the United Nations granting observer statehood to Palestine, the announcement of plans to build 3,400 homes for settlers, an election in Israel. Protests were spreading around the West Bank.

That night, the call came at about 7:30. Twenty people squeezed into three small cars and headed to the village square. More neighbors and cousins arrived on foot. (All of Nabi Saleh’s 550 residents are related by blood or marriage, and nearly all share the surname Tamimi.) Then a dark Ford pulled slowly into the square, and everyone fell silent. Is This Where the Third Intifada Will Start?

Peter van Agtmael/Magnum, for The New York Times. Protesters fleeing from tear gas launched by the Israel Defense Forces. In the background, the Israeli settlement of Halamish. More Photos »

Bassem, who is 45, stepped out of the car, straight-spined, his blue eyes glowing in the lamplight. He seemed a little thinner and grayer than the last time I saw him, in July. He hugged and kissed his eldest son. Ahed was next, then one by one, in silence, Bassem embraced family and friends, Palestinian activists from Ramallah and Jerusalem, Israeli leftists from Tel Aviv.

When Bassem had greeted everyone, he walked to the cemetery and stopped in front of the still-unmarked grave of his brother-in-law Rushdie, who was shot by Israeli soldiers in November while Bassem was in prison. He closed his eyes and said a quick prayer before moving on to the tomb of Mustafa Tamimi, who died after being hit in the face by a tear-gas canister in December 2011.

Back at home, Bassem looked dazed. Nariman broke down in his arms and rushed outside to hide her tears. The village was still mourning Rushdie’s death, but the young men couldn’t keep up the solemnity for long. They started with little Hamoudi, the son of Bassem’s cousin, tossing him higher and higher in the air above the yard. They set him down and took turns tossing one another up into the night sky, laughing and shouting as if they never had anything to grieve.

Nariman told me that by her count, as of February, clashes with the army have caused 432 injuries, more than half to minors. The momentum has been hard to maintain — the weeks go by, and nothing changes for the better — but still, despite the arrests, the injuries and the deaths, every Friday after the midday prayer, the villagers, joined at times by equal numbers of journalists and Israeli and foreign activists, try to march from the center of town to the spring, a distance of perhaps half a mile.

And every Friday, Israeli soldiers stop them with some combination of tear gas, rubber-coated bullets, water-cannon blasts of a noxious liquid known as “skunk” and occasionally live fire.

Last summer, I spent three weeks in Nabi Saleh, staying in Bassem and Nariman’s home.

When I arrived in June, Bassem had just been released from prison. In March 2011, Israeli soldiers raided the house to arrest him. Among lesser charges, he had been accused in a military court of “incitement,” organizing “unauthorized processions” and soliciting the village youth to throw stones.

(In 2010, 99.74 % of the Palestinians tried in military courts were convicted.)

The terms of Bassem’s release forbade him to take part in demonstrations, which are all effectively illegal under Israeli military law, so on the first Friday after I arrived, just after the midday call to prayer, he walked with me only as far as the square, where about 50 villagers had gathered in the shade of an old mulberry tree. They were joined by a handful of Palestinian activists from Ramallah and East Jerusalem, mainly young women; perhaps a dozen college-age European and American activists; a half-dozen Israelis, also mainly women — young anarchists in black boots and jeans, variously pierced.

Together they headed down the road, clapping and chanting in Arabic and English. Bassem’s son Abu Yazan, licking a Popsicle, marched at the back of the crowd.

There were the journalists, scurrying up hillsides in search of better vantage points. In the early days of the protests, the village teemed with reporters from across the globe, there to document the tiny village’s struggle against the occupation. “Sometimes they come and sometimes they don’t,” Mohammad Tamimi, who is 24 and coordinates the village’s social-media campaign, would tell me later. Events in the Middle East — the revolution in Egypt and civil war in Syria — and the unchanging routine of the weekly marches have made it that much harder to hold the world’s attention.

That Friday there was just one Palestinian television crew and a few Israeli and European photographers, the regulars among them in steel helmets.

In the protests’ first year, to make sure that the demonstrations — and the fate of Palestinians living under Israeli occupation — didn’t remain hidden behind the walls and fences that surround the West Bank, Mohammad began posting news to a blog and later a Facebook page (now approaching 4,000 followers) under the name Tamimi Press.

Soon Tamimi Press morphed into a homegrown media team: Bilal Tamimi shooting video and uploading protest highlights to his YouTube channel; Helme taking photographs; and Mohammad e-mailing news releases to 500-odd reporters and activists. Manal, who is married to Bilal, supplements the effort with a steady outpouring of tweets (@screamingtamimi).

News of the protests moves swiftly around the globe, bouncing among blogs on the left and right. Left-leaning papers like Britain’s Guardian and Israel’s Haaretz still cover major events in the village — deaths and funerals, Bassem’s arrests and releases — but a right-wing Israeli news site has for the last year begun to recycle the same headline week after week: “Arabs, Leftists Riot in Nabi Saleh.” Meanwhile, a pilgrimage to Nabi Saleh has achieved a measure of cachet among young European activists, the way a stint with the Zapatistas did in Mexico in the 1990s.

For a time, Nariman regularly prepared a vegan feast for the exhausted outsiders who lingered after the protests. (Among the first things she asked me when I arrived was whether I was a vegan. Her face brightened when I said no.)

Whatever success they have had in the press, the people of Nabi Saleh are intensely conscious of everything they have not achieved. The occupation, of course, persists. When I arrived in June, the demonstrators had not once made it to the spring. Usually they didn’t get much past the main road, where they would turn and find the soldiers waiting around the bend.

That week though, they decided to cut straight down the hillside toward the spring. Bashir led the procession, waving a flag. As usual, Israeli Army jeeps were waiting below the spring. The four soldiers standing outside them looked confused — it seemed they hadn’t expected the protesters to make it so far. The villagers marched past them to the spring, where they surprised three settlers eating lunch in the shade, still wet from a dip in one of the pools. One wore only soggy briefs and a rifle slung over his chest.

The kids raced past. The grown-ups filed in, chatting and smoking. More soldiers arrived in body armor, carrying rifles and grenade launchers. Waed and Abu Yazan kicked a soccer ball until a boy spotted a bright orange carp in one of the pools and Abu Yazan and others tried to catch it with their bare hands, splashing until the water went cloudy and the carp disappeared.

Four settlers appeared on the ledge above the spring, young men in sunglasses and jeans, one of them carrying an automatic rifle. Beside me, a sturdy, bald officer from the Israel Defense Forces argued with an Israeli protester. “I let you come,” the officer insisted. “Now you have to go.”

The children piled onto the swing the settlers had built and swung furiously, singing. A young settler argued with the I.D.F. officer, insisting that he clear the protesters away.

“What difference does 10 minutes make?” the officer said.

“Every 10 seconds makes a difference,” the settler answered.

But before their 10 minutes were up, one hour after they arrived, the villagers gathered the children and left as they had come, clapping and chanting, their defiance buoyed by joy. For the first time in two and a half years, they had made it to the spring.

They headed back along the highway, which meant they would have to pass the road leading to Halamish. Ahed, her blond hair in a long braid, clutched a cousin at the front of the procession. As they approached the road, a border-police officer tossed a stun grenade — a device that makes a loud bang and a flash but theoretically, at least, causes no bodily harm — at Ahed’s feet, and then another, and another. Within a few seconds, the marchers were racing up the hill back toward their village, tear-gas grenades streaking through the sky above their heads.

On warm summer evenings, life in Nabi Saleh could feel almost idyllic. Everyone knows everyone. Children run in laughing swarms from house to house. One night, Bassem and Nariman sat outside sharing a water pipe as Nariman read a translated Dan Brown novel and little Salam pranced gleefully about, announcing, “I am Salam, and life is beautiful!”

Bassem is employed by the Palestinian Authority’s Interior Ministry in a department charged with approving entrance visas for Palestinians living abroad. In practice, he said, P.A. officials “have no authority” — the real decisions are made in Israel and passed to the P.A. for rubber-stamping.

Among other things, this meant that Bassem rarely had to report to his office in Ramallah, leaving his days free to care for his ailing mother — she died several weeks after I left the village last summer — and strategizing on the phone, meeting international visitors and talking to me over many cups of strong, unsweetened coffee. We would talk in the living room, over the hum of an Al Jazeera newscast.

A framed image of Jerusalem’s Al Aqsa Mosque hung above the television (more out of nationalist pride than piety: Bassem’s outlook was thoroughly secular).

Though many people in Nabi Saleh have been jailed, only Bassem was declared a “prisoner of conscience” by Amnesty International. Foreign diplomats attended his court hearings in 2011. Bassem’s charisma surely has something to do with the attention. A strange, radiant calm seemed to hover around him. He rarely smiled, and tended to drop weighty pronouncements (“Our destiny is to resist”) in ordinary speech, but I saw his reserve crumble whenever one of his children climbed into his lap.

When Israeli forces occupied the West Bank in 1967, Bassem was 10 weeks old. His mother hid with him in a cave until the fighting ended. He remembers playing in the abandoned British police outpost that is now the center of the I.D.F. base next to Halamish, and accompanying the older kids who took their sheep to pasture on the hilltop where the settlement now stands. His mother went to the spring for water every day. The settlers arrived when Bassem was 9.

Halamish is now fully established and cozier than most gated communities in the United States. Behind the razor wire and chain-link perimeter fence, past the gate and the armed guard, there are playgrounds, a covered pool, a community center and amphitheater, a clinic, a library, a school and several synagogues. The roads are well paved and lined with flowers, the yards lush with lemon trees. Halamish now functions as a commuter suburb; many of the residents work in white-collar jobs in Tel Aviv or Modi’in. The settlement’s population has grown to more than double that of Nabi Saleh.

I first met Shifra Blass, the spokeswoman for Halamish, in 2010. She talked about how empty the West Bank — she used the biblical name, Judea and Samaria — was when she and her husband emigrated from the U.S. in the early 1970s, intent on establishing a Jewish presence in a land they believed had been promised to them. Relations with the surrounding villages, she told me, had remained cordial, friendly even, until the first intifada. (When I asked people in Nabi Saleh about this, no one remembered it that way.) During the second intifada, three residents of the settlement, Blass said, were killed by gunfire on nearby roads. They weren’t near the village, but attitudes hardened.

When I visited Shifra again last month, she was not eager to talk to me about the conflict over the spring and the lands surrounding it. “We want to live our lives and not spend time on it,” Blass said. She dismissed the weekly demonstrations as the creation of “outside agitators who come here and stir the pot — internationalists, anarchists, whatever.” It was all a show, she said, theater for a gullible news media. “I’ll tell you something: it’s unpleasant.”

On Fridays, Shifra said, the wind sometimes carries the tear gas across the valley into the settlement. “We have some grown children who say they cannot come home from university for Shabbat because of the tear gas. They call and say, ‘Tell me how bad it is, because if it’s really bad, I’m not coming.’ ”

When the first intifada broke out in late 1987, Nabi Saleh was, as it is now, a flash point. The road that passes between the village and the settlement connects the central West Bank to Tel Aviv: a simple barricade could halt the flow of Palestinian laborers into Israel.

Bassem was one of the main Fatah youth activists for the region, organizing the strikes, boycotts and demonstrations that characterized that uprising. (Nabi Saleh is solidly loyal to Fatah, the secular nationalist party that rules the West Bank; Hamas, the militant Islamist movement that governs Gaza, has its supporters elsewhere in the West Bank but has never had a foothold in the village.)

Bassem would be jailed 7 times during the intifada and, he says, was never charged with a crime. Before his most recent arrest, I asked him how much time he had spent in prison. He added up the months: “Around four years.”

After one arrest in 1993, Bassem told me, an Israeli interrogator shook him with such force that he fell into a coma for eight days. He has a nickel-size scar on his temple from emergency brain surgery during that time. His sister died while he was in prison. She was struck by a soldier and fell down a flight of courthouse stairs, according to her son Mahmoud, who was with her to attend the trial of his brother. (The I.D.F. did not comment on this allegation.)

Bassem nonetheless speaks of those years, as many Palestinians his age do, with something like nostalgia. The first intifada broke out spontaneously — it started in Gaza with a car accident, when an Israeli tank transporter killed four Palestinian laborers. The uprising was, initially, an experience of solidarity on a national scale. Its primary weapons were the sort that transform weakness into strength: the stone, the barricade, the boycott, the strike.

The Israeli response to the revolt — in 1988, Defense Minister Yitzhak Rabin reportedly authorized soldiers to break the limbs of unarmed demonstrators — began tilting international public opinion toward the Palestinian cause for the first time in decades. By the uprising’s third year, however, power had shifted to the P.L.O. hierarchy. The first Bush Sr. administration pushed Israel to negotiate, leading eventually to the 1993 Oslo Accord, which created the Palestinian Authority as an interim body pending a “final status” agreement.

But little was resolved in Oslo.

A second intifada erupted in 2000, at first mostly following the model set by the earlier uprising. Palestinians blocked roads and threw stones. The I.D.F. took over a house in Nabi Saleh. Children tossed snakes, scorpions and what Bassem euphemistically called “wastewater” through the windows. The soldiers withdrew. Then came the heavy wave of suicide bombings, which Bassem termed “the big mistake.”

An overwhelming majority of Israeli casualties during the uprising occurred in about 100 suicide attacks, most against civilians. A bombing at one Tel Aviv disco in 2001 killed 21 teenagers. “Politically, we went backward,” Bassem said.

Much of the international good will gained over the previous decade was squandered. Taking up arms wasn’t, for Bassem, a moral error so much as a strategic one. He and everyone else I spoke with in the village insisted they had the right to armed resistance; they just don’t think it works. Bassem could reel off a list of Nabi Saleh’s accomplishments. Of some — Nabi Saleh had more advanced degrees than any village — he was simply proud. Others — one of the first military actions after Oslo, the first woman to participate in a suicide attack — involved more complicated emotions.

In 1993, Bassem told me, his cousin Said Tamimi killed a settler near Ramallah. Eight years later, another villager, Ahlam Tamimi escorted a bomber to a Sbarro pizzeria in Jerusalem. Fifteen people were killed, eight of them minors. Ahlam, who now lives in exile in Jordan, and Said, who is in prison in Israel, remain much-loved in Nabi Saleh.

Though everyone I spoke with in the village appeared keenly aware of the corrosive effects of violence — “This will kill the children,” Manal said, “to think about hatred and revenge” — they resented being asked to forswear bloodshed when it was so routinely visited upon them.  Manal told me, “lost his father, uncle, aunt, sister — they were all killed. How can you blame Said?

The losses of the second intifada were enormous. Nearly 5,000 Palestinians and more than 1,000 Israelis died. Israeli assassination campaigns and the I.D.F.’s siege of West Bank cities left the Palestinian leadership decimated and discouraged.

By the end of 2005, Yasir Arafat was dead (assassinated by Israeli poison), Israel had pulled its troops and settlers out of Gaza and the Palestinian Authority president, Mahmoud Abbas, had reached a truce with Prime Minister Ariel Sharon. The uprising sputtered out. The economy was ruined, Gaza and the West Bank were more isolated from each other than ever, and Palestinians were divided, defeated and exhausted.

But in 2003, while the intifada was still raging, Bassem and others from Nabi Saleh began attending demonstrations in Budrus, 20 minutes away. Budrus was in danger of being cut off from the rest of the West Bank by Israel’s planned separation barrier, the concrete and chain-link divide that snakes along the border and in many places juts deeply into Palestinian territory. Residents began demonstrating. Foreign and Israeli activists joined the protests. Fatah and Hamas loyalists marched side by side.

The Israeli Army responded aggressively: at times with tear gas, beatings and arrests; at times with live ammunition. Palestinians elsewhere were fighting with Kalashnikovs, but the people of Budrus decided, said Ayed Morrar, an old friend of Bassem’s who organized the movement there, that unarmed resistance “would stress the occupation more.”

The strategy appeared to work.

After 55 demonstrations, the Israeli government agreed to shift the route of the barrier to the so-called 1967 green line. The tactic spread to other villages: Biddu, Ni’lin, Al Ma’asara and in 2009, Nabi Saleh. Together they formed what is known as the “popular resistance,” a loosely coordinated effort that has maintained what has arguably been the only form of active and organized resistance to the Israeli presence in the West Bank since the end of the second intifada in 2005. Nabi Saleh, Bassem hoped, could model a form of resistance for the rest of the West Bank.

The goal was to demonstrate that it was still possible to struggle and to do so without taking up arms, so that when the spark came, if it came, resistance might spread as it had during the first intifada. Bassem said: “If there is a third intifada,we want to be the ones who started it.

Bassem saw three options:

1.  “To be silent is to accept the situation, and we don’t accept the situation.”

2. Fighting with guns and bombs could only bring catastrophe. Israel was vastly more powerful,

3.  “But by popular resistance, we can push Israel power aside.”

As small as the demonstrations were, they appeared to create considerable anxiety in Israel. Paul Hirschson, a spokesman for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, told me that while the West Bank demonstrations do not pose an “existential threat” to Israel, they “certainly could be more problematic in the short term” than a conventional armed revolt.

Eytan Buchman, a spokesman for the I.D.F., took issue with the idea that the weekly protests were a form of nonviolent resistance.

In an e-mail Eytan described the protests as “violent and illegal rioting that take place around Judea and Samaria, and where large rocks, Molotov cocktails, improvised grenades and burning tires are used against security forces. Dubbing these simply demonstrations is an understatement — more than 200 security-force personnel have been injured in recent years at these riots.” (Molotov cocktails are sometimes thrown at protests at the checkpoints of Beitunia and Kalandia but never, Bassem said, in Nabi Saleh.)

Buchman said that the I.D.F. “employs an array of tactics as part of an overall strategy intended to curb these riots and the ensuing acts of violence. Every attempt is made to minimize physical friction and risk of casualties” among both the I.D.F. and the “rioters.”

One senior military commander, who would agree to be interviewed only on the condition that his name not be used, told me: “When the second intifada broke out, it was very difficult, but it was very easy to understand what we had to do. You have the enemy, he shoots at you, you have to kill him.” Facing down demonstrators armed with slings and stones or with nothing at all is less clear-cut. “As an Israeli citizen,I prefer stones. As a professional military officer, I prefer to meet tanks and troops.”

But armies, by their nature, have one default response to opposition: force. One soldier who served in Nabi Saleh testified to the Israeli veterans’ group Breaking the Silence about preparing for Friday protests. “It’s like some kind of game. Everyone wants to arm themselves with as much ammo as possible. . . . You have lots of stun grenades . . . so they’re thrown for the sake of throwing, at people who are not suspected of anything. And in the end, you tell your friend at the Friday-night dinner table: ‘Wow! I fired this much.’ ”

According to a leaked 2010 U.S. State Department memo, Maj. Gen. Avi Mizrahi of Israel “expressed frustration” with the West Bank protests to American diplomats, and “warned that the I.D.F. will start to be more assertive in how it deals with these demonstrations, even demonstrations that appear peaceful.” The memo concluded that “less-violent demonstrations are likely to stymie the I.D.F.,” citing the Israeli Defense Ministry policy chief Amos Gilad’s admission to U.S. officials, “We don’t do Gandhi very well.”

Sagi Tal, a former I.D.F. soldier, who was stationed near the villages of Bil’in and Ni’lin, which also held weekly demonstrations, explained to me that his unit sometimes conducted night raids to gather intelligence or make arrests and sometimes simply so “that they should feel that we are here and we are watching them.”

After dinner one Sunday, Nariman put on a DVD shot both by her and Bilal, the village videographer. (“From the beginning,” Bilal told me at the march on the previous Friday, filming calmly as tear-gas grenades landed all around us, “we decided that the media is the most important thing in the popular resistance.”)

We watched a clip shot in the house in which we sat: soldiers banged on the door late at night and rifled through the boys’ room as Salam and Abu Yazan cowered beneath the covers and Nariman yelled in Arabic: “What manliness this is! What a proud army you’re part of!” The soldiers confiscated a gas mask, two computers, Waed’s camera and two of his schoolbooks — geography and Palestinian history. (In an e-mail, an I.D.F. spokesman described such night raids as “pre-emptive measures, taken in order to assure the security and stability in the area.”)

We watched footage of Nariman being arrested with Bilal’s wife, Manal, early in 2010. Soldiers had fired tear gas into Manal’s house, Nariman explained. Manal ran in to fetch her children, and when she came out, a soldier ordered her back in. She refused, so they arrested her. Nariman tried to intervene, and they arrested her too. They spent 10 days in prisons where they were beaten repeatedly, strip-searched and held for two days without food before each was dumped at the side of a road. (The I.D.F.’s Buchman said, “No exceptional incidents were recorded during these arrests.” He added that no complaints were filed with military authorities.)

We watched a clip of crying children being passed from a gas-filled room out a second-story window, down a human ladder to the street. Early on, the villagers took all the children to one house during demonstrations, but when the soldiers began firing gas grenades into homes, the villagers decided it was safer to let them join the protests. We watched footage of a soldier dragging a 9-year-old boy in the street, of another soldier striking Manal’s 70-year-old mother. Finally, Nariman shook her head and turned off the disc player. “Glee” was on.

One Friday, shortly after the marchers had barricaded the road with boulders and burning tires in order to keep the army out of the village center, a white truck sped around the bend, a jet of liquid arcing from the water cannon mounted on its cab. Someone yelled, “Skunk!” and everyone bolted. Skunk water smells like many things, but mainly it smells like feces. Nariman wasn’t fast enough. A blast of skunk knocked her off her feet. Moments later, she was standing defiantly, letting the cannon soak her and waving a Palestinian flag at the truck’s grated windshield. An hour or so later, smelling of skunk and shampoo, she was serving tea to a dozen protesters.

Every Friday was a little different. Some demonstrations were short and others almost endless. Some were comic, others not at all. Some days the I.D.F. entered the village, and others they stuck to the hills. Sometimes they made arrests. The basic structure, though, varied little week to week: a few minutes of marching, tear gas fired, then hours of the village youth — the shebab — throwing stones while dodging tear-gas canisters and rubber-coated bullets until the sun set and everyone went home. Or failed to make it home.

It was strange, asymmetric combat: a few dozen masked shebab ranging in age from 8 to 38, armed with slings and stones, against 20 or more soldiers in armored vehicles and on foot, dressed in helmets and body armor, toting radios and automatic weapons. The shebab put a great deal of thought into tactics, trying to flank and surprise the soldiers. But even when their plans were perfectly executed, they could not do much more than irritate their enemies. The soldiers, though, would inevitably respond with more sophisticated weaponry, which would motivate the shebab to gather more stones Friday after Friday despite — and because of — the fact that nothing ever seemed to change, for the better at least.

I asked one of the boys why he threw stones, knowing how futile it was. “I want to help my country and my village, and I can’t. I can just throw stones.”

We see our stones as our message,” Bassem explained. The message they carried, he said, was “We don’t accept you.”

While Bassem spoke admiringly of Mahatma Gandhi, he didn’t worry over whether stone-throwing counted as violence. The question annoyed him: Israel uses far greater and more lethal force on a regular basis, he pointed out, without being asked to clarify its attitude toward violence. If the loincloth functioned as the sign of Gandhi’s resistance, of India’s nakedness in front of British colonial might, Bassem said, “Our sign is the stone.”

The weekly clashes with the I.D.F. were hence in part symbolic. The stones were not just flinty yellow rocks, but symbols of defiance, of a refusal to submit to occupation, regardless of the odds. The army’s weapons bore messages of their own: of economic and technological power, of international support. More than one resident of Nabi Saleh reminded me that the tear gas used there is made by a company based in Pennsylvania.

One afternoon, I visited the family of Mustafa Tamimi, who was 28 when he died in December 2011 after being shot at close range with a tear-gas canister from the back of an Israeli Army jeep. (An I.D.F. investigation concluded, according to Buchman, that when the soldier fired the canister “his field of vision was obscured.”) The walls were covered with framed photos: an action shot of Mustafa in profile, his face behind a red Spider-Man mask as he slung a stone at soldiers outside the frame.

In the weeks before her son’s death, Ekhlas Tamimi, his mother, told me that soldiers had twice come to the house looking for him. When she got a call that Friday asking her to bring Mustafa’s ID to the watchtower, she thought he’d been arrested, “like all the other times.” Beside me, Bahaa, a tall young man who was Mustafa’s best friend, scrolled through photos on a laptop, switching back and forth between a shot of Mustafa falling to the ground a few feet behind an I.D.F. jeep, and another, taken moments later, of his crushed and bloody face.

Ekhlas told me about a dream she’d had. Mustafa was standing on the roof, wearing his red mask. There were soldiers in the distance. She called to him: “Mustafa, come down! Everyone thinks you are dead — it’s better that they don’t see you.”

He turned to her, she said, and told her: “No. I’m standing here so that the Israeli soldiers will see me.”

“This is the worst time for us,” Bassem confided to me last summer. He meant not just that the villagers have less to show for their sacrifices each week, but that things felt grim outside the village too. Everyone I spoke with who was old enough to remember agreed that conditions for Palestinians are far worse now than they were before the first intifada.

The checkpoints, the raids, the permit system, add up to more daily humiliation than Palestinians have ever faced. The number of Israeli settlers living in the West Bank has more than tripled since the Oslo Accords. Assaults on Palestinians by settlers are so common that they rarely made the news. The resistance, though, remained limited to a few scattered villages like Nabi Saleh and a small urban youth movement.

I sat down one afternoon in Ramallah with Samir Shehadeh, a former literature professor from Nabi Saleh who was one of the intellectual architects of the first intifada and whom I met several times at Bassem’s house. I reminded him of the car accident that ignited the first uprising and asked what kind of spark it would take to mobilize Palestinians to fight again. “The situation this time is 1,000 times worse. There are thousands of possible sparks,” and still nothing has happened.

In the 1980s, youth organizers like Bassem focused on volunteer work: helping farmers in the fields, educating their children. They built trust and established the social networks that would later allow the resistance to coordinate its actions without waiting for orders from above. Those networks no longer exist. Instead there’s the Palestinian Authority. Immediately after the first Oslo Accord in 1993, the scholar Edward Said predicted that “the P.L.O. will . . . become Israel’s enforcer.”

Oslo gave birth to a phantom state, an extensive but largely impotent administrative apparatus, with Israel remaining in effective control of the Palestine Authority’s finances, its borders, its water resources — of every major and many minor aspects of Palestinian life. More gallingly to many, Oslo, in Said’s words, gave “official Palestinian consent to continued occupation,” creating a local elite whose privilege depends on the perpetuation of the status quo.

That Palestinian  elite lives comfortably within the so-called “Ramallah bubble”: the bright and relatively carefree world of cafes, NGO salaries and imported goods that characterize life in the West Bank’s provisional capital. During the day, the clothing shops and fast-food franchises are filled. New high-rises are going up everywhere. “I didn’t lose my sister and my cousin and part of my life,” Bassem said, “for the sons of the ministers” to drive expensive cars.

Worse than any corruption, though, was the apparent normalcy. Settlements are visible on the neighboring hilltops, but there are no checkpoints inside Ramallah. The I.D.F. only occasionally enters the city, and usually only at night. Few Palestinians still work inside Israel, and not many can scrape a living from the fields.

For the thousands of waiters, clerks, engineers, warehouse workers, mechanics and bureaucrats eeking a living in Ramallah who spend their days in the city and return to their villages every evening, Ramallah — which has a full-time population of less than 100,000 — holds out the possibility of forgetting the occupation and pursuing a career, saving up for a car, sending the children to college.

But the checkpoints, the settlements and the soldiers are waiting just outside Ramallah, and the illusion of normalcy made Nabi Saleh’s task more difficult.

If Palestinians believed they could live better by playing along, who would bother to fight? When Bassem was jailed in decades past, he said, prisoners were impatient to get out and resume their struggles. This time, he ran into old friends who couldn’t understand why he was still fighting instead of making money off the spoils of the occupation. “They said to me: ‘You’re smart — why are you doing this? Don’t you learn? Don’t you want to make money..’ ”

At times the Palestinian Authority acts as a more immediate obstacle to resistance. Shortly after the protests began in Nabi Saleh, Bassem was contacted by P.A. security officials. The demonstrations were O.K., he said they told him, as long as they didn’t cross into areas in which the P.A. has jurisdiction — as long, that is, as they did not force the P.A. to take a side, to either directly challenge the Israelis or repress their own people. (A spokesman for the Palestinian security forces, Gen. Adnan Damiri, denied this and said that the Palestinian Authority fully supports all peaceful demonstrations.)

In Hebron, P.A. forces have stopped protesters from marching into the Israeli-controlled sector of the city. “This isn’t collaboration,” an I.D.F. spokesman, who would only talk to me on the condition that he not be named, assured me.“Israel has a set of interests, the P.A. has a set of interests and those interests happen to overlap.”

Bassem saw no easy way to break the torpor and ignite a more widespread popular resistance. “The P.A  have the power, more than the Israelis, to stop us.” The Palestinian Authority employs 160,000 Palestinians, which means it controls the livelihoods of about a quarter of West Bank households. One night I asked Bassem and Bilal, who works for the Ministry of Public Health, how many people in Nabi Saleh depend on P.A. salaries. It took them a few minutes to add up the names. “Let’s say two-thirds of the village,” Bilal concluded.

Last summer, my final Friday in Nabi Saleh was supposed to be a short day. One of the shebab was getting engaged to a girl from a neighboring village, and everyone planned to attend the betrothal ceremony. The demonstration would end at 3.

Four armored cars waited at the bend in the road, the skunk truck idling behind them. Manal pointed to the civilian policemen accompanying the soldiers. “There is a new policy that they can arrest internationals,” she explained. Earlier that month, as part of the effort to combat what Israelis call the “internationalization” of the conflict, the defense forces issued an order authorizing Israeli immigration police to arrest foreigners in the West Bank.

About half the marchers headed down the hillside. Soldiers waiting below arrested four Israelis and detained Bashir, the owner of the land around the spring. Everyone cheered as Mohammad raced uphill, outrunning the soldiers. (Three months later they would catch up to him in a night raid on his father’s house. He was imprisoned until late December.)

I saw Nariman standing in the road with a Scottish woman. I walked over. Two soldiers grabbed the Scottish protester. Two more took me by the arms, pulled me to a jeep and shoved me in. I showed my press card to the driver. His expression didn’t change. Two frightened young women, both British, were already locked inside.

After almost an hour, the soldiers brought a Swede and an Italian who had been hiding in the convenience-store bathroom. More soldiers piled in. I showed one my press card and asked if he understood that I was a journalist. He nodded. Finally, the driver pulled onto the road. As we passed the gas station, the shebab ran after us.

“They were so beautiful a few minutes ago, right?” the soldier beside me said as the shebab’s stones clanged against the jeep. “They were so cute.”

They drove us to the old British police station in the I.D.F. base in Halamish. While I was sitting on a bench, an I.D.F. spokesman called my cellphone to inform me that no journalists with press cards had been detained in Nabi Saleh. I disagreed. (The next day, according to Agence France-Presse, the I.D.F. denied I had been arrested.) A half-hour later, an officer escorted me to the gate.

As I walked back to Nabi Saleh, the road was empty, but the air was still peppery with tear gas. I made it back in time for the engagement party and flew home the next day. The five activists detained with me were deported. Two nights after I left, soldiers raided Bassem’s house. The following week, they raided the village five days in a row.

This past October, the popular resistance movement began to shift tactics, trying to break the routine of weekly demonstrations. They blocked a settler road west of Ramallah, and the following week staged a protest inside an Israeli-owned supermarket in the settlement industrial zone of Shaar Binyamin. Bassem was arrested outside the market — soldiers grabbed at Nariman and dragged Bassem off when he stepped forward to put his arms around her.

Less than two weeks later, Waed was arrested at a Friday demonstration. Soldiers beat Waed “with their fists and their rifles.” When he appeared in court, Waed was still bruised. The judge threw out the charges. But while he was detained, he was in the same prison as his father and saw him briefly there. “When I said goodbye to him,” Waed told me with obvious pride, “he had tears in his eyes. I was stronger than him.”

On the day of Waed’s arrest, a camera caught Ahed shaking her fist, demanding that soldiers tell her where they were taking her brother. The Internet took over: video of the tiny, bare-armed blond girl facing down a soldier went viral. She and Nariman were invited to Istanbul, where, to their surprise, Nariman said, they were greeted at the airport by dozens of children wearing T-shirts printed with Ahed’s photo. They drove past billboards displaying Ahed’s image. Reporters followed them everywhere. Crowds gathered when they walked in the streets. They were taken to Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan in the southeastern city of Urfa, Nariman said, and flew back with him to Istanbul on his plane.

Not everyone reacted so enthusiastically. One right-wing blogger dubbed Ahed “Shirley Temper.” The Israeli news site Ynet took the images as evidence that “Palestinian protesters use children to needle I.D.F. soldiers in the hope of provoking a violent response.”

In mid-November, Israeli rockets began falling on Gaza. Protests spread throughout the West Bank. “We thought it was the start of the third intifada,” Manal told me. The demonstrations in Nabi Saleh stretched beyond their usual Friday-evening terminus. One Saturday in November, Nariman’s brother Rushdie — who worked as a policeman near Ramallah and was rarely home on Fridays — joined the shebab on the hill. He was standing beside Waed when he was hit by a rubber-coated bullet.

Then the soldiers began shooting live ammunition, but Rushdie was hurt and couldn’t run. As he lay on the ground, a soldier shot him in the back from a few meters away. Nariman ran to the hillside with her video camera and found her brother lying wounded. “I wanted to attack the soldier and die with Rushdie right there, but I knew I had to be stronger than that,” Nariman said. “Why is it required of me to be more humane than they are?” Rushdie, who was 31, died two days later. An I.D.F. investigation found that soldiers fired 80 shots of live ammunition and neglected to “control the fire.” The unit’s commander was reportedly relieved of his command.

When the fighting stopped in Gaza, the protests in the West Bank ceased. I went back to Nabi Saleh in January, three weeks before Bassem was expected home. The village seemed listless and depressed, as if everyone were convinced of the futility of continuing. On my first Friday back, the demonstration ended early: the shebab had a soccer match in another village. It rained the next week, and everyone went home after an hour. “We are still living the shock of Rushdie’s killing,” Mohammad told me.

Elsewhere in the West Bank, though, momentum was building. In late November, Netanyahu announced plans to build 3,400 settlement units in an area known as E1, effectively cutting off Jerusalem from the West Bank. Just before I arrived in January, popular-resistance activists tried something new, erecting a tent “village” called Bab al-Shams in E1, symbolically appropriating the methods of land confiscation employed by settlers. “The time has come now to change the rules of the game,” the organizers wrote in a news release, “for us to establish facts on the ground — our own land.”

The numbers were relatively small — about 250 people took part, including Nariman and a few others from Nabi Saleh — and, on direct orders from Netanyahu, soldiers evicted everyone two days later, but the movement was once again making headlines around the globe. Copycat encampments went up all over the West Bank — some in areas where the popular resistance had not previously been active.

The day after his release, Bassem told me that even sitting in prison he had felt “a sense of joy” when he learned about Bab al-Shams. The popular resistance was finally spreading beyond the village demonstrations. “We have to create a sense of renewal,” he said, “not only in Nabi Saleh but on a larger scale.” The village’s losses — and his own — he acknowledged, were daunting. “The price is now higher,but if we don’t continue, it would mean that the occupation has succeeded.” It would take constant creativity, he said, to hold onto the momentum. He didn’t know what it would look like yet, but just talking about it seemed to add inches to his height.

Within days, thousands of Palestinians would protest around the West Bank, first in solidarity with prisoners on hunger strikes to demand an end to the indefinite detention of Palestinians without trial, later in outrage at the death of a 30-year-old prisoner named Arafat Jaradat. Once again, the words “third intifada” were buzzing through the press. Avi Dichter, the head of Israeli domestic security during the second intifada and the current minister of Home Front Defense, cautioned in a radio interview that an “incorrect response by the security forces” might push the protests into full-out revolt.

When I saw Bassem in February, I asked him whether he was worried that the uprising might finally arrive at Nabi Saleh’s moment of greatest self-doubt, that it might catch the village drowsing. “It doesn’t matter who is resisting,” he said. “What’s important is that they are resisting.”

On the last Friday I was there, the wind was against the demonstrators. Nearly every grenade the soldiers fired, regardless of how far away it landed, blew a cloud of gas up the road right at them. A dozen or so villagers watched the clashes from the relative safety of the hillside. Bassem’s cousin Naji was sitting on a couch cushion. Mahmoud, Bassem’s nephew, poured coffee into clear plastic cups. Bright red poppies dotted the hill between the rocks. The way was clear, but no one tried to walk down to the spring.

When the demonstration seemed over, I trekked back to the village with a young Israeli in a black “Anarchy Is for Lovers” T-shirt. He told me about his childhood on a kibbutz bordering the Gaza Strip. His parents were “right-wing Zionists,” he said, “hard-core.” They didn’t talk to him anymore. A group of soldiers appeared behind us, and we ducked into Nariman’s yard as they tossed a few stun grenades over the wall.

Later that evening, at Naji’s house, I watched Bilal’s video of the same soldiers as they strolled down the drive, lobbing tear-gas grenades until they reached their jeeps. They piled in and closed the armored doors. One door opened a crack. A hand emerged. It tossed one last grenade toward the camera. Gas streamed out, the door closed and the jeep sped off down the road.

Ben Ehrenreich won a 2011 National Magazine Award in feature writing. His most recent novel is “Ether,” published by City Lights Books. Editor: Ilena Silverman

Apartheid on all fronts: Israel persists on religious ideology in civic education, in mercenary colonial outpost in Middle-East…

Author Sami Michaeel, a Jewish Israeli from Iraq, has been delivering speeches and conducting seminars on the need for Israel to consider the alternative existential policy of integrating with the people in the region.

It is the responsibility of Israel to prove that it is ready to be part of the Middle-East region, and desist from resuming the policy of being the foreign colonial outpost to the western nations (Britain, France, and lately the USA in succession), desist from further preemptive wars, and seriously negotiate a long-term peace treaty with the Palestinians

Sami latest study was delivered at the “International convention for Israeli studies” hosted in Haifa.

Sami insists that Israel has become the worst apartheid State in the entire world.

Since 1967, after Israel expanded its occupation of Palestinian and Arab States lands, the spirit of Israel has been polluted and poisoned…

Israel thinks that it cannot afford to bail out as an outpost: It wants the most sophisticated weapons, keeps its weapon industry expanding and exporting more military hardware to African States, receive lavish donations to open up new colonies…

Adar Cohen, inspector of civic studies, agreed to sign on the published new civic education school book “On the road to civic citizenship“, a civic school book which transcend the fundamental Zionist ideology of apartheid and pure race, and exclusive Jewishness status…

And Adar was promptly sacked: This is not a good time for internal politics to demonstrate that Zionism is “that civic”

Israel has been applying a mind-fix policy to enforce her ideological thinking in all the Palestinian schools, and on diffusing any kinds of opinions that go counter to the radical Jewish religious ideology.

Israel has imposed on the Palestinian Authority in the West Bank its concept of “Economic Peace“, a unilateral contract based on the two premises:

1. Under the current conditions, there will be no resolutions for the cases of Jerusalem, the Palestinian refugees, and Hamas in Gaza. Consequently, the Palestinians should drop any illusion for any final peaceful agreement.

2. The occupation of Israel of the Palestinian territory is a serious threat to the stability and sustainability of the society in Israel. This colonial occupation is a demographic, moral, and political danger. The occupation is threatening to destroy the policy of forming a pure Jewish State.

The tacit reason for extending more trade and economic facilities in the West Bank is due to the evidences that points to the idea that occupation will inevitably ignite a Third Mass Disobedience Palestinian movement (Intifada). And Israel feels it be unable to tame this intifada by the sheer force, time around.

Thus, Israel is planing to extend small economical facilities for the current Palestinian Authority to lick on and defuse the growing grunting of the Palestinians under occupation.

Note: Post inspired by three articles published by Antoine Shalhat in the Lebanese daily Al Nahar.

So many of such minorities…? Only in Israel counting is a sacred business…

“Liberal” Zionists have acquired this tendency of glorifying the apartheid nature of Israel by avoiding the occupation policies and the ever expansion of illegal settlements in the Palestinian Territories, and putting forth the “imaginary threats that Israel is facing or might be facing, without reminding the readers that these threats are the results of Zionism ideology of supremacy and heaping indignities on the “goyim” everywhere the Zionists are in majority and in control… This following article is an example.

AARON DAVID MILLER published on August 14, 2012 In the New York Times under “Preserving Israel’s Uncertain Status Quo”:

“If someone asked me to sum up in a sentence where Israel will be a decade from now, I’d paraphrase Dickens: It will be neither the best nor worst of times. The Israelis will prosper and keep their state, but the Arabs and Iranians will never let them completely enjoy it.

What drives many Israelis and the successive governments is not a Scrooge-like Christmas Eve glimpse of a terrifying future, but a strange mix of accomplishment, comfort and anxiety that reinforces the desire to maintain the status quo, particularly on the Palestinian issue.

And that attitude is not going to change anytime soon.

Mitt Romney’s stumble on the Palestinian question highlighted just how comfortable many Israelis are, and the sheer magnitude of what they have accomplished. Romney mistakenly lowballed Israel’s per capita G.D.P. (about $31,000 in 2011, according to the World Bank, rather than his misstated $21,000).

Israel has serious worries:

1. The gaps between rich and poor are growing.

2. The military conscription issue highlights the resentment toward the ultra Orthodox, their unemployment rate (60 percent for men) and the drain they place on state resources.

3. The country’s demographics look bad — too many ultra-Orthodox Jews, Palestinians and Israeli Arabs and not enough secular Jews.

4. The frequent mass demonstrations that have been organized for a year now by Israelis young and old protesting the extremes in wealth and poverty and the squeeze on the middle class were stunning reminders of the extent of general disaffection.

Still the demonstrations weren’t sustainable. Most likely, it’s because — all in all — times are just not that bad. Indeed, along with all the forecasting of gloom and doom there’s this: Per capita Israel gives rise to more startups than any other country in the world.

On the U.N.’s 2011 Human Development Index, Israel — a country of seven-and-a-half million people — stands 17th out of 187 nations. The discoveries of natural gas in the Mediterranean will not only take care of Israel’s needs but by 2017 make it a significant exporter.

As for the Palestinian issue that threatens to undermine Israel’s future as a Jewish, democratic State, the dangers seem mitigated by the current situation.

The Palestinian Authority’s state-building enterprise and the security cooperation between Israeli and Palestinian services have generated more than a manageable status quo and all but eliminated terrorism.

The Arab Spring has left the Hamas leadership with few options and no real desire to wrangle with the Israelis militarily. And the approaching demise of the Assad regime in Syria will weaken Hezbollah.

If economic prosperity and a tolerable Palestinian problem seem to reinforce the status quo, the disquiet caused by instability elsewhere in the region validates Israel’s caution in not wanting to change it.

Israel seems bookended by two major worries that have all but subordinated the Palestinian issue to the back burner: Egypt’s future and Iran’s centrifuges.

The Israelis may have gotten over the shock of Hosni Mubarak’s ouster and the immediate fear that a Muslim Brotherhood president was going to abrogate the peace treaty. The Egyptian military and Cairo’s need for Western support will prevent that.

Yet the range of problems from security in the Sinai to support for Hamas in Gaza will introduce new uncertainty into Israel’s most important relationship with any Arab state and the only one based on the exchange of significant territory for the promise of normalized relations. Should that relationship deteriorate, the chances of a deal with the Palestinians on the same basis will recede.

The Iranian nuclear issue presents an even greater challenge and strategic priority. Israel is seeing its worst fears now realized. Sanctions hurt but won’t retard Iran’s enrichment of uranium, and negotiations aren’t capable now of producing a deal to stop that process at bomb-grade levels.

The fall of Bashar al-Assad’s regime in Syria will help weaken Iran. But it could also serve to accelerate the Iranian nuclear program out of Tehran’s fear of Sunni encirclement.

One of the biggest losers from the Iranian nuclear program may well be the Palestinians. The Israelis never bought the argument that solving the Palestinian issue would weaken Iranian influence in the region.

For this Israeli government, Iran is a much bigger priority. And if there is an Iranian-Israeli conflict or one involving the United States, the resulting turmoil would make Israeli-Palestinian negotiations almost impossible.

Given the uncertainties in the region, the odds of resolving its most complex problems — Palestine, the Iranian nuclear issue, the Arab quest for representative government — seem very long indeed.

Even under more enlightened governments than the current one, the issue has never been about comprehensive solutions. Instead, Israel traditionally looks to buy time, pre-empt and prevent on the military side when necessary, and take calculated risks in pursuit of peace when possible.

It’s not an ideal strategy — and one not always well-suited to the Silicon Valley of the Middle East and to a country that wants a more peaceful and prosperous future. But it’s kept a small country living on knife’s edge alive and in remarkably good shape. And that’s got to count for something…”

Philip Wiess replied: “Search for these phrases in the New York Times: Too many blacks in Alabama. Too many Jews in New York City.
Obama’s friend Eric Yoffie, a liberal Zionist, has used the same phrase, “too many Arabs.”  You don’t pay a price for such rhetoric in the U.S. No; you get into the New York Times!”

Aaron David Miller is a public policy scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars and the author of “The Much Too Promised Land: America’s Elusive Search for Arab-Israeli Peace.”

A version of this op-ed appeared in print on August 15, 2012, in The International Herald Tribune.

Residency rights Stripped of 250,000 Palestinians in the last 27 years?

Israel daily Haaretz published an article confirming that Israel stripped 250,000 occupied Palestinians of their residency rights in the last 27 years.

The affected Palestinians are more than 100,000 residents of Gaza and some 140,000 residents of the West Bank of their residency rights between Israel conquest of the territories in 1967 and the establishment of the Palestinian Authority in 1994.

As a result, close to 250,000 Palestinians who left the territories were barred from ever returning.

“Given that Gaza’s population has a natural growth rate of 3.3 percent a year, its population today would be more than 10 percent higher, had Israel not followed a policy of revoking residency rights from anyone who left the area for an extended period of time.

The West Bank’s population growth rate is 3 percent. Many of those prevented from returning were students or young professionals, working aboard to support their families.

The data on Gaza residency rights was released by the Defense Ministry’s Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories this week, in response to a freedom-of-information request filed by Hamoked – The Center for the Defense of the Individual.

In its letter, COGAT said that:

1.  44,730 Gazans lost their residency rights because they were absent from the territory for seven years or more;

2. 54,730 because they did not respond to the 1981 census;

3. and 7,249 because they didn’t respond to the 1988 census.

It added that 15,000 of those deprived of residency are now aged 90 or older.

In May 2011, Haaretz obtained the figures on West Bank residents who were stripped of their residency rights. The report noted that Israel had, for years, employed a secret procedure to do so. Palestinians who went abroad were required to leave their identity card at the border crossing.

Unlike those from Gaza, who were allowed to leave for seven years, the Palestinians from the West Bank received a special permit valid for three years. The permit could be renewed three times, each time for one year.

Any Palestinian who failed to return within six months after his permit expired would be stripped of his residency with no prior notice.

Former senior defense officials told Haaretz at the time of that report’s publication that they were unaware of any such procedure.

Today, a similar procedure is applied to East Jerusalem residents: A Palestinian who lives abroad for seven years or more loses his right to return to the city.

GOGAT’s letter to Hamoked regarding the Gaza natives said that there are various ways for Palestinians to get their residency restored, and in fact, some of those Gazans who lost their residency rights later regained them.

However, GOGA added, it lacks the resources to comply with Hamoked’s request to be told the specific reason behind each such restoration.

Since many of those who lost their residency rights from 1967 to 1994 in both Gaza and the West Bank were students or young professionals, their descendants today presumably number in the hundreds of thousands.

Of the original people affected by the policy – nearly 250,000 – many have since died. But several thousands who were affiliated with the PA were granted the right to return in 1994; still other Palestinians have since been allowed to return for a variety of reasons.

Among the more prominent West Bank residents who have been barred from returning are the brothers of the PA’s chief negotiator, Saeb Erekat, who went abroad to study and subsequently lost their residency. They now live in California.

Erekat said that having learned from their experience, he was careful to return to the West Bank periodically while he was studying abroad, so as to keep his residency permit valid.

Hamoked, which learned of the existence of this policy by chance while investigating the case of a West Bank resident jailed in Israel, charges that stripping tens of thousands of Palestinians of their residency – and thus effectively exiling them permanently from their homeland – is a grave violation of international law.

 
 

Part 2. Israel formed a war “unity government”: The Palestinian Authority formed what?

You might be interested to start with part 1: https://adonis49.wordpress.com/2012/05/16/israel-formed-a-war-unity-government-the-palestinian-authority-formed-what/

Israel Netanyahu PM changed his mind: Instead of his promise for an early election, he formed a “unity government” with Kadima and its leader Shawul Mofaz. Why?

Israel “unity government” is indeed a war cabinet: Israel is getting ready to confront two urgent problems to tackle:

First problem: The inevitable Fourth Palestinian Intifada (civil disobedience) has already started silently two months ago, and all indicate a full-fledge development:

1. Israel was forced to agree on all the demands of the Palestinian prisoners who waged a month-long hunger strike. More than two months ago, the two prisoners Bilal Diyab (27) and Thaer Halahela (34) crossed the dangerous hunger strike of 75 days. A month ago, 3,000 Palestinian prisoners, out of 4,500 started their hunger strike.

Egypt intervened in the negotiation and Israel agreed yesterday on all the demands of the prisoners. Mainly:

1. Releasing all prisoners in isolation cells: scores have been in isolation for over 10 years.

2. Dropping the antic British mandate apartheid administrative detention laws: 310 prisoners were jailed administratively and were not sent to trial. Under this emergency/curfew law, Israel authority could detain any Palestinian (exclusively Palestinians) for 6 months, renewable at will.

Actually, 60% of Palestinian youth entered this revolving door, just to keeping them out of circulation.

3. Allowing the families in Gaza to visit their members in jails. Prisoners from Gaza suffered undue harshness and complete isolation.

4. Permitting prisoners to continue their education…

5. Israel will return the dead bodies of 100 Palestinian martyrs, many of them died in prisons…

Mind you that in several occasions in the past 50 years, Palestinian prisoners engaged in hunger strikes and Israel would agree on deals, and then renege on them shortly after, and the prisoners had to suffer from the same humiliating tactics in prisons…

2. Israel is preparing to execute a new apartheid plan that Kadima approves, and was submitted to many institutions and military officers. Henry Sigman (see note) uncovered the secret apartheid program to be executed in the West Bank in Zones C.

Neftal Bennett, former cabinet secretary to Netanyahu and former director of the settlers council in Yehuda and Samaria, discussed and disseminated his apartheid new program in the occupied West Bank. What is this plan?

1. Israel and unilaterally (as usual), will grab the lands in zone C (as agreed upon in the Oslo deal) and annex all the town and villages to the State of Israel. Palestinians in zone C are about 150,000, and the program envisions to give Israeli passports to only 50,000 of these Palestinians. Where the other 100,000 Palestinians will be “transferred” to?

2. All of Jerusalem will be under total Israel security authority.

3. Israel will deploy its security umbrella to all of the West Bank

4. Gaza will be split from the West Bank and attached to Egypt

5. Deny all Palestinian refugees outside of Israel from returning to even zone A under the Palestinian Authority. Mind you that the UN guaranteed their right to return in 1948.

Apparently this new apartheid plan received good responses from the government coalition political parties and many veteran military officers.

Israel unity government has the task of executing this apartheid new plan, and very soon. The Palestinian Intifada is going to be protracted.

Netanyahu didn’t want to be singled out as the scapegoat during the many troubles ahead of the massive Palestinian civil disobedience movement, and wanted falsely demonstrate that all of Israel is behind this apartheid program.

While Israel is forming a unity government, what this Palestinian Authority of Mahmoud Abbas was doing for an entire year?

Last May 4, 2011, Mahmoud Abbas and Hamas (in Gaza) agreed to form a unity government, hold an election, and strengthen the institutions…in this May 4, 2012. The date had come and gone, and nothing was accomplished.

It appears that the new Palestinian middle class (nouveaux riches) in the West Bank and many academics are squeaky of a deal with Hamas (read link in note 2). Why?

This class of Palestinians think that any deal with Hamas will send the strong signal or message that an Intifada is on a hot burner.  And they don’t want any upheaval at this junction, and Israel is facilitating the illusion of prosperity and fairer behaviors with this middle Palestinian class.

The Lebanese correspondent Jihad el Zein to the daily al Nahar covered the conference in Cyprus in April 27 under the banner “Arab and Israel struggle in the light of the current changes”.  He said: “Each time I meet with a Palestinian coming from the West Bank  I ask him: “how long it took you to reach destination?” In general, it is an hour trip from Ramallah to the Jordanian border, but Palestinians spend 10 hours on the various checkpoints and lengthy investigation…This time, the academic Palestinians from the West Bank admitted it took them only about an hour and 30 minutes…”

Nabil Kassis, from the West Bank said: “In the past, when a faction split from the Palestinian Liberation Organization, the faction lost all credibility. This time around, it is the main organization that is suspected of deviation and lose credibility…”

The Hamas delegate Ghazi Hamad was the only member of the Palestinian delegation and he said: “I read all the papers and notes of the negotiation between Fateh and Hamas, and could not find a single word related to the religious issues…”

Sound very promising on civic mentality ground, though religious difficulties should be discussed head on, since there is no way to circumvent it being confronted to the rising tide of the Moslem Brotherhood movements… The Palestinians are the most educated and applied civil laws, and the people who experienced struggle in all its shape and forms.  The Palestinians are set be the prime catalyst to show the way to the “Arab States” citizens for a civic life-style and democratic systems

The middle class Palestinians and academics in the West Bank must have realized that it was Hamas that reaped the victory and the benefits from the hunger strike.  They have to decide: Shit or get off the seat. The Intifada is coming with the speed of a bullet train and you have got to take side and demonstrate steadfastness for the long haul.

Note 1: Henry Sigman uncovered the secret apartheid program to be executed in the West Bank in Zones C. Sigman is the former director of the Jewish American council.

Note 2: https://adonis49.wordpress.com/2012/04/20/palestinian-scholar-change-of-mind-two-state-alternative-failed/

Discriminated against on all sides: When Rita and Taher fall in love in Palestine

In the previous post I stated: “How could you figure out this paradox: An Arab State (probably Qatar) invited two Jewish Israeli swimmers to participate in a sport event, and denied a Palestinian scholar to attend a scientific conference on the ground that his passport is Israeli?

In 1948, only about 150,000 Palestinians steadfastly remained and held on their land while Israel was pursuing its policy of ”transferring” all Palestinians from Palestine, by all means available, including genocide and erasing entire villages…

Those 150,000 Palestinians living within the State of Israel suffered all kinds of discrimination, humiliations and indignities and they are currently around 1.5 million or 20% of Israel total population”.

This posts describes the problems and detour of falling in love in Palestine.

Taher Al Musalmani (24) lives in Israel, in the town of Nazareth, and work with a Palestinian TV channel.

Rita (26) lives in Gaza and work as correspondent to a satellite chain. Their paths met as they tried to work out ways to do joint programs and the calls got frequent and friendship was established, long distance fashion.

Rita and Taher decided to meet at Cherm el Cheikh (the Sinai peninsula in Egypt) last June. Taher has an Israeli passport and made it fine to destination, but Rita could not pass the Rafah border check-point (Gaza side).

Taher refused to despair: He managed to link with a caravan of the Sinai bedouins that got him to Rafah in Gaza, then through one of the many underground tunnels that are frequently bombed by Israel to prevent livestock, oil, and arms from entering Gaza via Egypt…A trip that lasted 26 hours one way since he had no visa from Egypt…

Rita could not believe her eyes as Taher stepped into her house and recounted the trip hassles of his journey.  Rita has divorced from a failed marriage and was not contemplating to remarry, not any time soon. The persistence of Taher changed her heart, mind and determination

Rita’s family needed three entire days of discussion and pondering before it agreed on the engagement ceremony. Taher has the engagement papers and he has to return to Nazareth. How?

Back to the tunnel and out to Taba (Egypt), then to Eilat (Israel on the Red Sea) and off to Tel Aviv. A strong police force was waiting for Taher on the airport of Tel Aviv and thrown into prison. Israel was searching for Taher on the premises that he might have links with the “enemy”.

Worse, Taher entered Gaza, a forbidden occupied territory.

Taher detention lengthened for weeks, with dozen of lie detector sessions, and then transferred to the “bird-cage” prison where Palestinians are formed to become spies to Israel.  In case the Palestinian refuses to become an Israeli informant his name is disseminated so that other Palestinian factions assassinate him on the ground of a potential informer…

Three weeks later, Taher is set free to residential confinement for another 6 months.

Rita and Taher plan to marry in Egypt and settle in Ramallah (the Capital of the Palestinian Authority).  Apparently, the Palestinian Authority is going to give this couple the hell of their life before they get together, if they do in Ramallah.

In any case, the world is vast and this couple intend to settle wherever they are accepted.

Note: The story is taken from a piece by Samia Al Zubaidi and published in the daily Al Hayat, London

Does the majority of the Israeli Jews know what it wants?

What Israel “Peace Indicator” says?

The Lebanese daily Al Nahar published a piece by its correspondent in Israel, the Palestinian/Israeli Antoine Shalhat, titled “Israel “Peace Indicator”.

The article says: “The September survey for Israel “Peace Indicator”, which corresponded with the repercussions of (Mahmoud Abbas) officially submitting a letter to the UN for recognition of a Palestinian State, showed the following pieces of intelligence:

1)  77% of Israeli Jews are for the resumption of negotiation.

2)  70% believe that negotiations will not lead to any peace between the concerned parties;

3)  43% oppose any reduction in internal security budget;

4)  50% want such a reduction in the budget;

6)  49% asked for government flexibility in resuming the negotiation process, before formal recognition of the Palestinian State;

7)  48% oppose any kinds of negotiations;

8)  59% agree that it is not in Israel interest a recognition of a Palestinian State;

9)  51% are for cooperation with the potential Palestinian State;

10)  79% do not believe that the current Palestinian Authority is capable of delivering on promises;

What do these data demonstrate?

First, the vast majority of Israeli Jews does not believe that the peace and reconciliation is within reach;

Second, the majority does not see how a Palestinian State can serve Israel best interest;

Third, the vast majority considers the negotiation process  as purely tactical in nature. Just to appease world community concerns, and to provide a breathing period…

It seems that the question “Does Israel want negotiation” is not as important as formulating an answer to “What does Israel want from any negotiation“. Israel is plainly faking readiness to negotiate peace and reconciliation with the occupied Palestinians.

Israel has no idea what it wants in the medium-term that could alleviate the fast deteriorating internal and external conditions.

Note:  You may read the previous post on the state of democracy and sectarianism in Israel https://adonis49.wordpress.com/2011/09/29/israel-2011-less-democratic-and-far-more-sectarian-by-antoine-shalhat/

The most helpless US President in the face of Middle East reality

I have published lately six articles related to Robert Fisk book “Affliction of a Nation” and focused on chapters that connect dots on how Lebanese resistance forces, particularly Hezbollah, got motivated, organized and managed to kick Israel occupation forces from Lebanon in the year 2000, without negotiations or any preconditions.

On Friday, 23 September 2011, Robert Fisk published the following piece in the British daily The Independent:

“Barack Obama made the ‘preposterous’ suggestion that Palestinians and Israelis were ‘equal’ parties to the conflict

Today should be Mahmoud Abbas’s finest hour. Even The New York Times has discovered that “a grey man of grey suits and sensible shoes, may be slowly emerging from his shadow”.

But this is nonsense. The colorless leader of the Palestinian Authority, who wrote a 600-page book on his people’s conflict with Israel without once mentioning the word “occupation”, should have no trouble this evening in besting Barack Hussein Obama’s pathetic, humiliating UN speech on Wednesday, in which he handed US policy in the Middle East over to Israel’s gimmick government.

For the American President who called for an end to the Israeli occupation of Arab lands, an end to the theft of Arab land in the West Bank – Israeli “settlements” is what he used to call it – and a Palestinian state by 2011, Obama’s performance was pathetic.”

Let us listen to what, even GW.Bush wrote on the Palestinian cause:  “The more I thought of the troubles in the Middle East, the more I was convinced that the fundamental culprit is lack of liberty in the occupied Palestinian territories. Without a recognized State, the Palestinians could not find their place in the world community; as long as the Palestinians have no say in their future, the extremist elements were going to fill the void; without legitimate leaders, democratically elected, dedicated to fighting extremist movement, peace with Israel will be compromised… I was the first US President demanding a recognized Palestinian State by the UN…”  What Obama has to add to what Bush Junior have recently said?

This is the same GW. Bush who also wrote in his autobiography “Decisive moments”: “I gave Israel Ariel Sharon PM my assent for constructing a separation wall (Wall of Shame) between the occupied Palestinian territories and Israel: I believed that this Wall will prevent Palestinians to trespass into Israel. After I received vehement reproach from Arabic leaders, I warned Sharon: “You have to know when to stop your execessive military responses”, but Sharon refused to budge in surrounding the headquarter of Arafat in Ramallah. (Sharon had entered the Palestinian camp in Jenine in the West Bank and committed genocide there in 2003; he had committed genocide in the Palestinian camps of Sabra and Chatila in 1982…).  Bush Junior gave the green light to Israel Olmert PM to committing genocide in Gaza in 2008…

The US Barack Obama has been wasting his presidency convincing the US citizens that a Black President is not necessarily a moral entity (who has assimilated the roots of racism and apartheid), and who might take moral stands in the world community, but just a continuation of the US political system in foreign policies… Obama is failing internally and externally, simply because he refuses to taking the high ground with respect to human rights, everywhere in the world, fairly and equitably. Obama has refused to test the goodwill of the US citizens by expressing practically what changes need to be done in US foreign policies…

Note 1: You may read https://adonis49.wordpress.com/2011/09/22/so-you-wont-say-adonis49-failed-to-follow-up-on-the-recognition-process-of-the-palestinian-state/

Note 2: I have published on my blog several articles related to chapters of GW. Bush “Decisive moments”

Check-mate Israel: Last Strategic ally down in region (Egypt)

Israel has no longer any strategic allies in the region (on its borders), not even minor allies:  The people in the region guarantee that no State regime in the region will dare schmooze and negotiate with any Israeli leader who refuses a Palestinian State and support the resumption of building in occupied land and is not serious of transferring the Jews of colonies in occupied land back to Israel.

Not a single State around Israel is scared of Israel’s military retaliation of any kind: the people have risen from the ashes of humiliation and imposed foreign policies.

(Only this obscurantist Saudi monarchy is the last steady ally to Israel and against all Arabic States that it view as a menace to this monarchy…)

The regime of Shah of Iran has long vanished since 1979, Turkey has been alienated and Israel still refuses to apologize for the crime against the peace boat incident, Mubarak of Egypt is down.  Tunisia of Ben Ali is down; the people in Jordan are putting the squeeze on the Hashemite monarch; the people in Lebanon have fired ex-PM Saad Hariri; the Palestinian Authority is discredited with the latest WikiLeaks and Hamas of Gaza and the West Bank are is on the ascendance.

The policies of the US for establishing the so-called Greater Middle East is down the drain:  the US invasion of Iraq has been routed; the US troops in Afghanistan are readying to retreat from a war that cannot be won; the credibility in the sanity of the US Administration’s policies in the Middle East region has disintegrated; the faulty programs of the International Monetary Funds have not been revised for transparency and discussion with the concerned parties that led to the latest upheaval in Tunisia, Egypt, and Yemen.

Israel is no longer in a position to play coy and humiliate the US and everybody else during the negotiation of a Palestinian State, not even Saeb Erakat, one of lame and cowardly Palestinian negotiators.  The crude statement of Tzipi Livni  (Israel ex-foreign affairs minister) “To create your Palestinian State, you have got to agree with Israel in advance on everything.  Your only choice is to relinquish any choices in the future.  Those are the founding bases for negotiation” is one of Israeli posturing relegated to history bins.

The new Palestinian State demands total withdrawal of Israeli troops to the 1967 border; it demands the dismantling of all the Jewish colonies in occupied land; it refuses swapping small portions of lands to legitimizing forced settlement; it wants borders with Jordan and Egypt, it wants and an international airport and a maritime port and full autonomy.  The new Palestinian State, recognized by Russia, most of Latin American States, and Cyprus refuses to be totally dependent on Israel economy, finance, and military support.

The leaders of the Palestinian Authority, those self-appointed President, PM, and negotiators in the name of the Palestinian people (in the West Bank, in Gaza, in refugee camps all around the world…) that refused to have another democratic election for fear of Hamas winning all the way, have been under contemptible situations as leaks of their cowardly negotiations with Israel surfaced in the public domain.

A new election for the Palestinian people is necessary before the resumption of any “peace talk” with the extremist Israeli government.

The cooperation of this defunct Palestinian Authority of Abu Abbass and company with Israel in capturing and assassinating Hamas operators, under the excuse that the Oslo agreement in 1993 to safeguarding Israel’s security, is null and void.  A new generation of Palestinians demand drastic reforms and dignity; they are denying their political leaders to continue  functioning under a prison mentality.

This masquerade of offering free parcels of land to Israel, a parcel from here and a parcel from there and pretty soon there is no land to giving away, is no longer accepted.  The quarters of Har Homa, Gilo, the Armenian quarters, Ariel, and Maaleh Adumin belong to East Jerusalem, the Capital of the Palestinian State.

The oligarchic style of governance of the Palestinian Authority needs to be reformed to a democratic constitution:  currently, the Palestinians living in Jerusalem would rather apply for Israel citizenship, if given choices, and refrain from living under abject conditions and lacking basic rights under this rotten Authority.

The Palestinians living in Israel and having Israeli citizenship and passport have to be included in the negotiation as a full concerned party.  A unified negotiating team, including all the major factions, especially Hamas, is the only viable alternative to resuming a dead negotiation process.

Israel had a window of opportunity to live in peace in 1993 after the Oslo agreement, but it preferred to play the bully, its favorite game. Israel is experiencing a check-mate move:  No free oil from Egypt or Saudi Arabia; no free water from Syria or Lebanon; no free occupied land by force or negotiations; no makeshift democratic mask that the Western States can no longer sustain with the latest public Israeli policies reinforcing the apartheid and racist activities.

Down with the Wall of Shame separating people along the dividing line.

Time for Israel to deal with the UN Charters for human rights, prisoners rights, legal prosecution processes, crimes against humanity, sex market, slave market, drugs market, arms market.

Note 1:  Mubarak is denied political refugee status everywhere, even in Saudi Arabia.  Otherwise, Mubarak would have resigned a couple of days ago.  The US Administration is calling around to finding a resting location for Mubarak.  I suggest that the UN designate an Island State to be the refuge to all deposed Presidents in order to save thousands of casualties in mass upheavals.

Note 2:  You may read my post  “The next holocaust” https://adonis49.wordpress.com/2010/04/09/otherwise-the-next-holocaust-is-imminent/

The leaders of the Palestinian Authority, those self-appointed President, PM, and negotiators in the name of the Palestinian people (in the West Bank, in Gaza, in refugee camps all around the world…) that refused to have another democratic election for fear of Hamas winning all the way, have been under contemptible situations as leaks of their cowardly negotiations with Israel surfaced in the public domain.

The Palestinian Authority is blaming the Emir of Qatar, since Al Jazeera is headquartered in Qatar, to leaking enormous amount of documents that robbed any remaining legitimacy to the Palestinian Authority:  This Authority is holding simply because the US and the western States want them to remain in power. The Palestinian Authority, represented by the defunct President Mahmoud Abass, Fayyad PM (stooges to the IMF and US Administration), Ahmad Korey3,  Saeb Erakat…are claiming that the maps are those presented by Israel and not their own version of land concessions; that the negotiations didn’t waver from what Arafat signed on in Oslo in 1993…

It sounded so disgusting; an “illegitimate government” endeavoring to negotiate from positions of total impotence and helplessness.  This Authority has not the backing of the Palestinian people and has been behaving as an oligarchic political system:  The Treasury is considered as belonging to the Fateh faction and the miniature other factions, factions that relinquished resistance to the occupier and insist on licking asses at every opportunity. This Authority has been cooperating fully with Israel in capturing and assassinating Hamas operators, under the excuse that the Oslo agreement in 1993 was to safeguarding Israel’s security.

This Authority has been cornered since Sharon assigned Arafat to his quarter in Ramallah and then assassinated Arafat by poison.  This Authority has been functioning under a prison mentality and trying its best undignified posturing for being recognized by the western nations are “legitimate negotiators” on behalf of the Palestinian people.

You have commentators saying that the leaks didn’t divulge any strategic shift in the concept of independent State for peace but simple tactical giving away parcels of lands.  A parcel from here and a parcel from there and pretty soon there is no land to give away.  The quarters of Har Homa and Gilo are already under constructions for some years, and Ariel, and Maaleh Adumin well established.

Fact is, this Authority has been governing as an oligarchy to such an extent that the Palestinians living in Jerusalem would rather apply for Israel citizenship, if given choices, and refrain from living under abject conditions and lacking basic rights under this Authority.  What kind of Palestinian State these backstabbing and slandering negotiators are discussing?  Tzipi Livni was pretty crude, responding to Erakat, on the kind of military defenses the Palestinian State should have: “To create your State, you have got to agree with Israel in advance on everything.  Your only choice is to relinquish any choices in the future.  Those are the founding bases for negotiation.”

Rumors would like us to believe that:

First, the negotiation between Arafat and Uhud Barak failed during the Clinton Administration simply because Uhud wanted “what is underneath the Great Mosque” of Haram El-Sherif to be Israeli territory;

Second, Hamas refuses that Palestinian refugees in Lebanon, Jordan, and Syria to return to Israel but exclusively to the long-awaited Palestinian State

Third, the sticky parts in the negotiations is whether the Jewish quarter in Jerusalem should revert to Israel, or that the Armenian quarter should return to Israel…

What if the remaining West Bank land reserved for the Palestinian State barely constitute 30% of the original land before the 1967 borders, since all the 400 Jewish colonies distributed in the West Bank and special highways joining the colonies are to be Israeli territory…

What if the Palestinian State has no borders but with Israel and all its economy is based on Israel?

So far, No party discussed or asked the opinions and input from the Palestinians living in Israel and having Israeli citizenship and passport.

A unified negotiating team, including all the major factions, especially Hamas, is the only viable alternative to resuming a dead negotiation process.  Anyway, with the fall of Mubarak (Egypt), the last “strategic State” in the region to Israel, this Zionist State is no longer in a position to playing coy.  Not a single State around Israel is scared of Israel’s military retaliation of any kind.

In Lebanon, the channel Al Jadid has been diffusing videos of questioning sessions of the International Court representative to Lebanese political personalities,  related to the assassination of Rafic Hariri PM in 2005.  You cannot imagine how these politicians slandered and reviled their opponents in front of a foreigner, simply because he is a UN representative.  Lebanon has been ruled by those same leaders for 60 years; they claimed that stability and peace of Lebanon are linked to satisfying their family, clan, and sect interests.  The newly appointed Mikati PM has a small window of opportunity to demonstrate that he comprehend that the Lebanese people, before the fallen Mubarak, Ben Ali, and Saad Hariri, are no longer the same and demand drastic reforms.

Note:  Mubarak is denied political refugee status everywhere, even in Saudi Arabia.  Otherwise, Mubarak would have resigned a couple of days ago.  The US Administration is calling around to finding a resting location for Mubarak.  I suggest that the UN designate an Island State to be the refuge to all deposed Presidents in order to save thousands of casualties in mass upheavals.


adonis49

adonis49

adonis49

October 2021
M T W T F S S
 123
45678910
11121314151617
18192021222324
25262728293031

Blog Stats

  • 1,482,552 hits

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.adonisbouh@gmail.com

Join 813 other followers

%d bloggers like this: