Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Georges Soros funds infiltration of 9/11 truth, election protection, and "independent" journalism

Georges Soros funds infiltration of 9/11 truth, election protection, and "independent" journalism

We have learned from well-placed sources that international hedge fund mogul and financier of "progressive" causes George Soros has been, for a number of years, been infiltrating 9/11 "truth" organizations, groups advocating election reform, and so-called "independent journalism" enterprises in order to hijack agendas and, eventually, cause the groups to collapse from within or be absorbed into larger organizations servile to Soros and his agenda.

By far, the largest group Soros and his allies has infiltrated and taken over is the Democratic Party of the United States. It now totally adheres to a corporatist line and has purged from its leadership Dr. Howard Dean and replaced him with Virginia Governor Tim Kaine, a Democratic Leadership Council adherent. The Soros faction and its allies has also seen to it that Bill Richardson, Caroline Kennedy, and others who represent the "Democratic wing of the Democratic Party" have been shut out of the Obama administration.

In many ways, Soros' operations is strikingly similar to the FBI's former Counter-Intelligence Program, also known as COINTELPRO. There is also ample evidence that Soros' program is linked to Israeli intelligence operations in the United States and that some presidential campaigns in 2008 were infiltrated by the joint operation, including those of Democratic candidate, former Senator Mike Gravel, and Republican candidate Ron Paul.

Soros' operations, according to our sources, involve his Open Society Institute, as well as Soros Fund Management LLC, in which his son Jonathan Soros plays a leading role.

For Soros, his political operations in America are much the same as they are in places like Ukraine, Georgia, Moldova, Romania, and other countries: divide, confuse the political sides, and conquer.

The modus operandi is that Soros operatives either help establish "progressive" organizations or join them after they are established with a new infusion of a modest to substantial funding. The agenda of the organization is then altered to make it look either like a far-out "conspiracy" association. Or the infiltrators of the organization create internecine battles between factions or tamp down its fervor. In some cases, the organizations ultimately cease to exist or are combined with other Soros-controlled or influenced organizations.

In the case of alternative journalism operations, Soros' operatives launch attacks, some of them highly personal, against bona fide independent journalists and question their sources and investigations. we have been a primary target for such operations, according to sources familiar with Soros' tactics...

Soros' agents of disinformation and influence have moved in to "manage" the stories about jailed Alabama Democratic Governor Don Siegelman, the 2004 vote fraud in Ohio, the Turkish and Israeli intelligence penetration of the highest echelons of the U.S. government, the presence of Israeli spies among the accused 9/11 hijackers in the months prior to the terrorist attacks on 2001, and Russian-Israeli "Kosher Nostra" criminal activity from London to Kyiv and New York to Moscow.

Overall, Soros' operations are primarily focused on controlling the left through the use of censors and on-line gatekeepers in the media operations he funds. Recipients of Soros money are found running web sites, some of them well-known; hosting TV and radio programs; and writing regularly for major periodicals.

Soros has ingratiated himself to many on the Left but that was his goal. However, there are a number of progressives who are wise to Soros' operations and will continue to expose them regardless of how many more billions he amasses from shorting stocks, speculating on national currencies, and destroying jobs.

With the palindrome SOROS -- if you replace the "S's" with $ -- as in $oro$, you will be left with "oro," the Italian and Spanish word for "gold." It sums up Mr. Soros nicely, if that is his real name, and not "Goldfinger."


by Gail Davidson, lawyer

"We the peoples of the United Nations determined to save succeeding
generations from the scourge of war."

The war against Afghanistan is illegal. The US, assisted by Canada and
Britain is bombing Afghanistan and will perhaps use additional force
with ground troops for the stated purpose of capturing or killing
Osama bin Laden and others associated with his organization and of
toppling the Taliban government.

No international or national law or policy legalizes these attacks on
Afghanistan. No resolutions of the United Nations' Security Council or
the North Atlantic Treaty Organization could provide a legal
justification for these attacks and none do.

The war against Afghanistan violates international law including the
Charter of the United Nations (The Charter), the Geneva Conventions
and the relevant provisions of the eleven International agreements
dealing with the suppression and control of terrorism. The attacks by
bombing and the use of other military force are war crimes pursuant to
the Rome Statute.


The Charter prohibits the use and the threatened use of any force in
their international relations. The Charter specifically prohibits the
use of force to topple foreign governments. It goes without saying
that all national and international laws forbid the killing of non-
combatants (i.e. arguably all Afghanis) the bombing and other use of
force in Afghanistan will inevitably kill and injure large numbers of
non-combatants. The October 11 edition of the Vancouver Sun reports
200 Afghanistan people killed in US bombing raids including 4 United
Nations employees. October 13, 2001 reports indicate a residential
area hit by a missile. Mass killing of non-combatants is considered by
the world community the most egregious of crimes.
The Preamble to the Rome Statute, in reference to such crimes states,
"Mindful that during this century millions of children, women and men
have been victims of unimaginable atrocities that deeply shock that
conscience of humanity."
The United States, United Kingdom Canada and Afghanistan are all
Member States of the United Nations. The Charter of the United Nations
imposes on members the binding obligation to settle disputes in a
manner that ensures the maintenance of peace and justice. Article 2 of
the Charter prohibits the use or threatened use of force against
another state. [See Box I] The Article 2 prohibition applies to all
force and is a rule of customary international law. As such the
Article 2 prohibition is universally binding even on the few states
not members of the United Nations. (Nicaragua 2. U.S., ICJ Reports,
1986, pp. 98-101)

The Article 2 prohibition has been reiterated in numerous Resolutions
of the UN General Assembly. For example on 17 December 1984 the UN
General Assembly passed a resolution affirming the inadmissibility of
the policy of State terrorism including actions by States aimed at
undermining the socio-political systems in other sovereign states.
This resolution specifically prohibits the use of military action and
contains the demand:

".that all States take no actions aimed at military intervention and
occupation, forcible change in or undermining of the socio-political
system of States, destabilization and overthrow of the their
Governments and, in particular, initiate no military action to that
end under any pretext whatsoever and cease forthwith any such action
already in progress."

The fact that the attacks on Afghanistan are in response to horrific
crimes believed to have been committed by people believed to be hiding
in Afghanistan does not provide any legal justification whatsoever. As
observed in "A Modern Introduction to International Law, 7th edition",
page 261, "The Charter is based on the belief that international law
should not be enforced at the expense of international peace." Neither
can international law be enforced by the commission of more crimes.

Box I CHARTER OF THE UNITED NATIONS - The Preamble to the Charter
states the purpose of the United Nations as "to save succeeding
generations from the scourge of war". Articles 2 prohibits the use of
force (3) &(4) read: ARTICLE 2. 3 All Members shall settle their
international disputes by peaceful means in such a manner that
international peace and security, and justice, are not endangered.
ARTICLE 2. 4 All Members shall refrain in their international
relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial
integrity or political independence of any state, or in any other
manner inconsistent with the Purposes of the United Nations.

SECURITY COUNCIL RESOLUTIONS The United Nations Security Council,
(Security Council), the body with primary responsibility for the
maintenance of international peace and security, passed two
resolutions regarding the September 11 attacks: resolution 1268 on 12
September 2001 and Resolution 1373 on 28 September 2001. Neither
resolution authorizes the use of force.

Resolution 1373 (2001) adopted by the Security Council at its 4385th
meeting on 28 September 2001 (incorporating the earlier resolution 12
September) affirms the responsibility of Member States to take only
those measures that are:
"in compliance with national and international law including
international human rights standards' to prevent and suppress
terrorist attacks and to take action against the perpetrators of such
acts. Security Council resolution 1373 specifically restricts member
states to actions that are authorized by law and in accordance with
the Charter of the United Nations.

Canada is already largely in compliance with the directives contained
in Resolution 1373 and has promulgated regulations under Canada's
United Nations Act to implement provision of the resolution, including
prohibiting financing and fundraising and for freezing the assets of
terrorist organizations.

Article 51 of the Charter defines Member States' right of self-
defense. This article neither authorizes bombing and armed force as
self-defense nor bestows legal authority for the US to wage war.
Article 51 gives Member States the narrow power to defend themselves
against a continuing armed assault until such time as the Security
Council intervenes to maintain and restore peace and security. Article
51 of the Charter of the United Nations (The Charter) does not create
any right to make retaliatory attacks or to engage in the use of force
to repel anticipated armed attacks. The right to self-defense in
Article 51 is restricted to actions that are necessary to repel and
proportionate to an ongoing armed attack and only exists until the
Security Council takes measures to restore peace and security. The
right to self defense is restricted to self defense action and is
further restricted to those actions necessary to maintain
"international peace and security" and must be carried out in
accordance with The Charter.

The entire Charter is based on the premise Member States must maintain
international peace, security and justice and may not use force to
settle international disputes or to remove foreign governments.
Article 51 does not displace the obligation imposed on States by
Article 2. [See Box II]

51"Nothing in the present Charter shall impair the inherent right of
individual or collective self-defense if an armed attack occurs
against a Member of the United Nations, until the Security Council has
taken measures necessary to maintain international peace and security.
Measures taken by Members in the exercise of this right of self-
defense shall be immediately reported to the Security Council and
shall not in any way affect the authority and responsibility of the
Security Council under the present Charter to take at any time such
action as it deems necessary in order to maintain or restore
international peace and security."

infers that some legal authority for the use of armed force against
Afghanistan or the Taliban was created by the resolutions of the North
Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). That is entirely false.

NATO, a regional organization with the goal of restoring and
maintaining the security of the North Atlantic area, resolved on
September 12 2001 that the September 11 attacks were covered by
Article 5 of the Washington Treaty and therefore all NATO members will
consider the September 11 attacks as an armed attack against all NATO
members. [See Box III]

Box III ARTICLE 5 OF THE WASHINGTON TREATY"The Parties agree that an
armed attack against one or more of them in Europe or North America
shall be considered an attack against them all and consequently they
agree that, if such an armed attack occurs, each of them, in exercise
of the right of individual or collective self-defense recognized by
Article 51 of the Charter of the United Nations will assist the Party
or Parties so attacked by taking forthwith, individually and in
concert with the other Parties, such actions as it deems necessary,
including the use of armed force, to restore and maintain the security
of the North Atlantic area. Any such armed attack and all measure
taken as a result thereof shall immediately be reported to the
Security Council. Such measures shall be terminated when the Security
Council has taken the measures necessary to respect and maintain
international peace and security."

Although this resolution enabled NATO countries to act collectively,
countries were restricted to action determined by the North Atlantic
Council. The September 12 resolution in clear language barred any
action until further decision by the Council.
"No collective action will be taken by NATO until further
consultations are held and further decisions are made by the North
Atlantic Council." On October 5 2001 NATO at the request of the United
States agreed to take eight measures collectively and individually
including the provision of 'blanket over flight clearances for US.
aircraft and to provide access to ports and airfields to US.
NATO thereby agreed to facilitate actions taken by the US outside the
restrictions of the NATO decision-making process. [Box IV]

The United States has rejected this collective approach and has put
together its own group of 'allies' leaving the US in control of all
aspects of the current bombing of Afghanistan and of any future war
actions including bombings of additional countries. Lloyd Axworthy
correctly described the 'coalition' of which Canada is now an active
member as a "hub-and-spoke arrangement, where direction comes from the
centre with little input from the outside members." (The Globe and
Mail Monday October 8 2001)

Box IV NATO RESOLUTION 5 OCTOBER 2001The October 5 2001 NATO Allies
agreed to:·Enhance intelligence sharing and cooperation, both
bilaterally and in the appropriate NATO bodies, relating to the
threats posed by terrorism and the actions be taken against
it;·Provide, individually or collectively, as appropriate and
according to their capabilities, assistance to Allies and other states
which are or may be subject to increased terrorist threats as a result
of their support for the campaign against terrorism;·Take necessary
measures to provide increased security for facilities of the United
States and other Allies on their territory;·Backfill selected Allied
assets in NATO's area of responsibility that are required to directly
support operations against terrorism;·Provide blanket over flight
clearances for the United States and other Allies' aircraft, in
accordance with the necessary air traffic arrangements and national
procedures, for military flights related to operation against
terrorism;·Provide access for the United States and other Allies to
ports and airfields on the territory of NATO nations for operations
against terrorism, including for refueling, in accordance with
national procedures.·That the Alliance is ready to deploy elements of
its Standing Naval Forces to the Eastern Mediterranean in order to
provide a NATO presence and demonstrate resolve; and·That the Alliance
is similarly ready to deploy elements of its NATO Airborne Early
Warning force to support operations against terrorism.

Article 52 of the Charter restricts regional agencies, including NATO,
to activities consistent with the purposes and principles of the
United Nations. The NATO resolutions cannot override the provision of
the UN Charter.

Yet without authorization from the Security Council the US, UK and
Canada are bombing Afghanistan, and US President Bush threatens to
bomb other countries. These threats and the threats to "starve" the
Taliban are themselves crimes pursuant to the provision of to the
Geneva Convention Protocol 1. (See Box V)


The Geneva Convention Protocol 1 is an absolute prohibition against
attacks and threats of attacks on civilians. [See Box IV] Protocol 1
also prohibits indiscriminate attacks. Indiscriminant attacks are
defined as including: attacks by any method or means that will either
strike military and civilians objects without distinction or cause
death and injury to civilians disproportionate to the "concrete and
direct military advantage anticipated." Reprisals against civilians,
starvation as a method of warfare and attacking or destroying objects
indispensable to the survival of the civilian population, such as
food, crops, livestock, drinking water and irrigation systems are all
strictly and absolutely prohibited.

Box V THE GENEVA CONVENTION PROTOCOL 1 (The Protocol Additional To the
Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949, and relating to the Protection
of Victims of International Armed Conflicts adopted 8 June 1977 by the
Diplomatic Conference on the Reaffirmation and Development of
International Humanitarian Law applicable in Armed Conflicts entry
into force 7 December 1979) begins with an affirmation of the
obligation to refrain from the use of force. The Preamble to Protocol
1 states;"Recalling that every State has the duty, in conformity with
the Charter of the United Nations, to refrain in its international
relations from the threat or use of force against the sovereignty,
territorial integrity or political independence of any State, or in
any other manner inconsistent with the purposes of the United
Nations."Box V (cont'd)Article 51 Protection of the civilian
population1.The civilian population and individual civilians shall
enjoy general protection against dangers arising from military
operation..2.The civilian population as such, as well as individual
civilians, shall not be the object of attack. Acts or threats of
violence the primary purpose of which is to spread terror among the
civilian population are prohibited. 3.Civilians shall enjoy the
protection afforded by this Section, unless and for such time as they
take a direct part in hostilities. 4.Indiscriminant attacks are
prohibited. Indiscriminate attacks are:.c. Those which employ a method
or means of combat the effects of which cannot be limited as required
by this Protocol; and consequently, in each such case, are of a nature
to strike military objectives and civilians or civilian objects
without distinction.5.Among others, the following types of attacks are
to be considered indiscriminate; attack by bombardment by any
methods or means which treats as a single military objective a number
of clearly separated and distinct military objectives located in a
city, town, village or other area containing a similar concentrating
of civilians or civilian objects; attack which may be expected
to cause incidental loss of civilian life, injury to civilians, damage
to civilian objects, or a combination thereof, which would be
excessive in relation to the concrete and direct military advantage
anticipated.6.Attacks against the civilian population or civilians by
way of reprisals are prohibited.Article 54 Protection of Objects
indispensable to the survival of the civilian population1.Starvation
of civilians as a method of warfare is prohibited.


Although the international community has not defined terrorism there
are 11 international legal agreements that enable the international
community to take legal actions to suppress terrorism and to prosecute
those responsible for acts of terrorism. [See Box VI]

The European Justice Ministers at their recent conference (Moscow, 4-5
October 2001) called on all European member and observer states to
become Parties to the international treaties on terrorism in
particular the 1999 International Convention for the Suppression of
the Financing of Terrorism.

The September 11 attacks are illegal under these conventions. So is
the war against Afghanistan. Some examples of the illegality of the
attacks against Afghanistan under two of these Conventions follow.

The Convention to Suppress Terrorist Bombings (58 signatories, 29
parties) has been signed and ratified by the UK. Canada and the US
have signed, 12 January 1998 and have not ratified. The Convention to
Suppress Terrorist Bombings defines in Article 24 a terrorist bomber
as a person who unlawfully and intentionally delivers, places,
discharges or detonates a bomb, explosive, lethal or incendiary device
in, into or against a place of public use, a state or government
facility, a public transportation system or an infrastructure facility
with the intent to cause death or serious bodily injury or the
destruction of such a place resulting in major economic loss.

This definition would appear to include the person(s) bombing
Afghanistan. The US led attacks on Afghanistan highlight one of the
critical reasons for defining terrorism; to preclude the use of war to
combat terrorism.

The International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of
Terrorism (25 February 2000) by Article 2 makes it an offence to
directly or indirectly provide funds to be used to carry out, "any
other act intended to cause death or serious bodily injury to a
civilian, or to any other person not taking an active part in the
hostilities in a situation of armed conflict, when the purpose of such
act, by its nature or context, is to intimidate a population, or to
compel a Government or an international organization to do or to
abstain from doing any act."

14 SEPTEMBER 1963Entry into force: Convention entered into force on
4December1969 Status: 41 signatories; 172 contracting States.
AT THE HAGUE ON 16 DECEMBER 1970Entry into force: The Convention
entered into force on 14 October 1971.Status: 77 signatories; 174
1971Entry into force: The Convention entered into force on 26 January
1973.Status: 60 signatories; 175 contracting States4.PROTOCOL FOR THE
SIGNED AT MONTREAL ON 24 FEBRUARY 1988Entry into force: The Protocol
entered into force on 6August1989.Status: 69 signatories; 107
MATERIALEntry into force: 8 February 1987 Parties: 69Signatories:
OF MARITIME NAVIGATION, 1988Adoption: 10 March 1988 Entry into force:
June 1998Status: 51 signatories, 68 contracting States8.INTERNATIONAL
December 1997 Entry into force: 23 May 2001, in accordance with
article 22 (1).Registration: 23 May 2001, No. 37517.Status:
Signatories: 58, Parties: 29BOX VI (cont'd)9.INTERNATIONAL CONVENTION
AGAINST THE TAKING OF HOSTAGES New York, 17 December 1979 Entry into
force: 3 June 1983, in accordance with article 18(1).Registration: 3
June 1983, No. 21931.Status: Signatories: 39, Parties: 9610.CONVENTION
1973Entry into force: 20 February 1977, in accordance with article 17
(1).Registration: 20 February 1977, No. 15410.Status: Signatories: 25,
FINANCING OF TERRORISM New York, 9 December 1999Not yet in force: (see
article 26).Status: Signatories: 57, Parties


The September 11 attacks are crimes pursuant to national and
international law and many member states have called for these crimes
of terrorism to be brought before the International Criminal Court
(ICC). This is not possible because the ICC does not yet exist. It may
not be possible to prosecute these crimes through the ICC when it
comes into operations because Article 11 of the Rome Statute precludes
prosecutions for offences that took place prior to the statute coming
into operation. However some legal commentators argue that Article 11
is invalid because it is contrary to the General Assembly resolution
#2391 of 26 November 1968 that passed the Convention on the Non-
Applicability of Statutory Limitations to War Crimes and Crimes
Against Humanity.

The Rome Statute (The ICC Treaty) is a multi-lateral treaty approved
by 120 countries on July 17, 1998 and is the constituent statute for
the ICC. (120 voted for, 7 against and 20 abstentions. The US and
China were amongst the 7 countries voting against acceptance of the
Rome Statute on 17 [sic] July 1998)

The International Criminal Court will begin operation when 60
Countries ratify the Rome Statute. As of October 12 2001 43 countries
have ratified and 139 countries have signed the Rome Statute. The US
despite significant involvement in the drafting of the Rome Statute is
the only Western democracy now opposed. The US Congress recently re-
introduced the bill that will ban any kind of cooperation and military
assistance with Member States of the UN that have ratified the Rome
Statute and obstruct the participation of the US in UN peacekeeping
operations. The same bill will authorize the President of the US to
use "all the necessary measures" to liberate any US citizens detained
by the ICC.

This is in stark contrast to the past US record of support to
international criminal courts. The US spearheaded the Nuremberg and
Tokyo Tribunals and the creation of the International Criminal
Tribunals for the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda.
The Rome Statute defines three categories of international crimes
committed during violent conflicts between and within states: war
crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide. The Rome Statute also
creates the International Criminal Court to be a, "permanent
institution and shall have the power to exercise its jurisdiction over
persons for the most serious crimes of international concern, as
referred to in this [Rome] statute, and shall be complementary to
national criminal jurisdictions."(Article 1) The International
Criminal Court will have jurisdiction to prosecute these crimes when
the state(s) having jurisdiction are unable or unwilling to do so.
Crimes of aggression will eventually be within the jurisdiction of the
International Criminal Court.

The US still vigorously opposes the creation of an International
Criminal Court. However, the European community vigorously supports
the creation of an International Criminal Court with jurisdiction over
a broader range of crimes. On 26 September 2001 the Council of Europe
parliamentary assembly voted in favour of expanding the mandate of the
International Criminal Court to allow it to prosecute perpetrators of
terrorist acts. By a nearly unanimous vote (148 to 1 abstention) urged
European governments to impose sanctions on countries providing safe
haven to terrorists.

The war against Afghanistan also violates the provisions of the Rome
Statute war crimes provisions Article 8. [See Box VII]

Box VII ROME STATUTE article 8.2.b.iv"Intentionally launching an
attack in the knowledge that such attack will cause incidental loss of
life or injury to civilians or damage to civilian objects or
widespread, long-term and severe damage to the natural environment
which would be clearly excessive in relation to the concrete and
direct overall military advantage anticipated;"and 8.2.b.v"Attacking
or bombarding, by whatever means, town, villages, dwellings or
buildings which are undefended and which are not military
objectives;"and 8.2.b.xxv"Intentionally using starvation of civilians
as a method of warfare by depriving them of objects indispensable to
their survival, including willfully impeding relief supplies as
provided for under the Geneva Conventions;"


The September 11 attacks in New York were crimes both nationally and
internationally. Murder, highjacking, destruction of property are
crimes under the national laws of the many countries whose nationals
were killed and are crimes pursuant to a wide range of international

The bombing of Afghanistan and the resulting deaths, injuries,
starvation and displacement of Afghanistan people and the destruction
of property including the destruction of necessary infrastructure is
illegal. The use of force to topple to Taliban government is also

While the rhetoric justifying war raids on Afghanistan (and possibly
other countries) suggests there are no laws or law enforcement
mechanisms that can respond to the September 11 attacks. That is not
true and flies in the face of both international law and it's
underlying policies.

When the US entered Germany in 1945, it was not suggested that
millions of German civilians be stripped, gassed and bulldozed into
mass graves in retaliation for the holocaust. The crimes that had been
committed were so enormous that to even think of retaliation in like
kind was unimaginably barbaric. Instead the Nuremberg trials were
held, setting up the rule of law as the most powerful opponent of rule
by military force.

The world community has, through the United Nations and regional
agencies worked to "save succeeding generations from the scourge of
war" by o Prohibiting the use of force as a means of settling
international disputes (The Charter); and, o Developing by global
consensus, minimum standards of human rights and international laws
that criminalize the crimes most intolerable to the world community
including: crimes against humanity, war crimes and crimes of

There have been many reminders during the past 50 years of the urgent
need to develop laws and to eschew violence as a response to crime. A
reminder that the use of force (retaliatory bombing in the following
example) contributes to the escalation and not the deterrence of
terrorism occurred subsequent to April 1986 when two US servicemen
were killed when a bomb exploded in a Berlin nightclub. The US,
believing Libyans to be responsible, retaliated by bombing Libya
killing 36 civilians including the year old daughter of Libyan leader
Moamar Khadafy. Twenty months later, in December 1988 Pan Am flight
103 exploded over Lockerbie Scotland killing 270 people. Three Libyans
were subsequently tried by a Scottish Court and located in the
Netherlands. Two of the accused were convicted and one was acquitted.

Mechanisms for global enforcement of existing national and
international laws exist as evidenced in part by the above mentioned
Resolutions directing all members of the United Nations, in the case
of the Security Council resolutions, and all NATO members, in the case
of the NATO resolutions, to cooperate in the exchange of information
and resources to enforce existing laws.

Member states to the UN are obliged to participate in all aspects of a
global investigation of the September 11 attacks that would lead to a
process of indictment, extradition, prosecution, trial and punishment
of those guilty. The cooperative directives from the Security Council
also relate to effecting the coordination of measures to prevent
future terrorist attacks.

Prosecutions of the perpetrators of the September 11 attacks could
take place in the national courts of either the US or a number of
other affected states. Alternately, the Security Council can create an
ad hoc International Criminal Tribunal on the model of the existing
International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia to conduct
the global investigation of the September 11 attacks and the resulting
prosecutions and trials.
The Security Council has the power to order the creation of an
international military force to carry out the requisite

Canadians must insist that all governments adhere to the restraints of
law. Citizens must act to ensure that the people of Afghanistan have
the security and rights to life provided for by international law and
enjoyed by Canadians. Canadians must act to ensure that the people in
Afghanistan are afforded legal protections against death injury,
starvations, displacement and deprivation of the necessaries of life.

Written by Gail Davidson a Member of the Law Society of British
Columbia and founder of Lawyers' Rights Watch Canada "LAWYERS' RIGHTS
WATCH CANADA" October 13, 2001

Assistance by: Diana Davidson C.M., B.ed, LLB, Founder of People's Law
School (editing);
Dr. Mark Battersby (Philosophy); (Technical assistance) and Monisha
Martins (Research assistance)

"Fascism should rightly be called corporatism as it is a merge of
state and corporate power"...Benito Mussolini

by Gail Davidson, lawyer


Israel’s Lies

Israel’s Lies

Henry Siegman

Western governments and most of the Western media have accepted a number of
Israeli claims justifying the military assault on Gaza: that Hamas
consistently violated the six-month truce that Israel observed and then
refused to extend it; that Israel therefore had no choice but to destroy
Hamas’s capacity to launch missiles into Israeli towns; that Hamas is a
terrorist organization, part of a global jihadi network; and that Israel
has acted not only in its own defense but on behalf of an international
struggle by Western democracies against this network.

I am not aware of a single major American newspaper, radio station or TV
channel whose coverage of the assault on Gaza questions this version of
events. Criticism of Israel’s actions, if any (and there has been none from
the Bush administration), has focused instead on whether the IDF’s carnage
is proportional to the threat it sought to counter, and whether it is
taking adequate measures to prevent civilian casualties.

Middle East peacemaking has been smothered in deceptive euphemisms, so let
me state bluntly that each of these claims is a lie. Israel, not Hamas,
violated the truce: Hamas undertook to stop firing rockets into Israel; in
return, Israel was to ease its throttlehold on Gaza. In fact, during the
truce, it tightened it further. This was confirmed not only by every
neutral international observer and NGO on the scene but by Brigadier
General (Res.) Shmuel Zakai, a former commander of the IDF’s Gaza Division.
In an interview in Ha’aretz on 22 December, he accused Israel’s government
of having made a ‘central error’ during the tahdiyeh, the six-month period
of relative truce, by failing ‘to take advantage of the calm to improve,
rather than markedly worsen, the economic plight of the Palestinians of the
Strip . . . When you create a tahdiyeh, and the economic pressure on the
Strip continues,’ General Zakai said, ‘it is obvious that Hamas will try to
reach an improved tahdiyeh, and that their way to achieve this is resumed
Qassam fire . . . You cannot just land blows, leave the Palestinians in
Gaza in the economic distress they’re in, and expect that Hamas will just
sit around and do nothing.’

The truce, which began in June last year and was due for renewal in
December, required both parties to refrain from violent action against the
other. Hamas had to cease its rocket assaults and prevent the firing of
rockets by other groups such as Islamic Jihad (even Israel’s intelligence
agencies acknowledged this had been implemented with surprising
effectiveness), and Israel had to put a stop to its targeted assassinations
and military incursions. This understanding was seriously violated on 4
November, when the IDF entered Gaza and killed six members of Hamas. Hamas
responded by launching Qassam rockets and Grad missiles. Even so, it
offered to extend the truce, but only on condition that Israel ended its
blockade. Israel refused. It could have met its obligation to protect its
citizens by agreeing to ease the blockade, but it didn’t even try. It
cannot be said that Israel launched its assault to protect its citizens
from rockets. It did so to protect its right to continue the strangulation
of Gaza’s population.

Everyone seems to have forgotten that Hamas declared an end to suicide
bombings and rocket fire when it decided to join the Palestinian political
process, and largely stuck to it for more than a year. Bush publicly
welcomed that decision, citing it as an example of the success of his
campaign for democracy in the Middle East. (He had no other success to
point to.) When Hamas unexpectedly won the election, Israel and the US
immediately sought to delegitimize the result and embraced Mahmoud Abbas,
the head of Fatah, who until then had been dismissed by Israel’s leaders as
a ‘plucked chicken’. They armed and trained his security forces to
overthrow Hamas; and when Hamas – brutally, to be sure – pre-empted this
violent attempt to reverse the result of the first honest democratic
election in the modern Middle East, Israel and the Bush administration
imposed the blockade.

Israel seeks to counter these indisputable facts by maintaining that in
withdrawing Israeli settlements from Gaza in 2005, Ariel Sharon gave Hamas
the chance to set out on the path to statehood, a chance it refused to
take; instead, it transformed Gaza into a launching-pad for firing missiles
at Israel’s civilian population. The charge is a lie twice over. First, for
all its failings, Hamas brought to Gaza a level of law and order unknown in
recent years, and did so without the large sums of money that donors
showered on the Fatah-led Palestinian Authority. It eliminated the violent
gangs and warlords who terrorized Gaza under Fatah’s rule. Non-observant
Muslims, Christians and other minorities have more religious freedom under
Hamas rule than they would have in Saudi Arabia, for example, or under many
other Arab regimes.

The greater lie is that Sharon’s withdrawal from Gaza was intended as a
prelude to further withdrawals and a peace agreement. This is how Sharon’s
senior adviser Dov Weisglass, who was also his chief negotiator with the
Americans, described the withdrawal from Gaza, in an interview with
Ha’aretz in August 2004:

What I effectively agreed to with the Americans was that part of the
settlements [i.e. the major settlement blocks on the West Bank] would not
be dealt with at all, and the rest will not be dealt with until the
Palestinians turn into Finns . . . The significance [of the agreement with
the US] is the freezing of the political process. And when you freeze that
process, you prevent the establishment of a Palestinian state and you
prevent a discussion about the refugees, the borders and Jerusalem.
Effectively, this whole package that is called the Palestinian state, with
all that it entails, has been removed from our agenda indefinitely. And all
this with [President Bush’s] authority and permission . . . and the
ratification of both houses of Congress.

Do the Israelis and Americans think that Palestinians don’t read the Israeli
papers, or that when they saw what was happening on the West Bank they
couldn’t figure out for themselves what Sharon was up to?

Israel’s government would like the world to believe that Hamas launched its
Qassam rockets because that is what terrorists do and Hamas is a generic
terrorist group. In fact, Hamas is no more a ‘terror organization
(Israel’s preferred term) than the Zionist movement was during its struggle
for a Jewish homeland. In the late 1930s and 1940s, parties within the
Zionist movement resorted to terrorist activities for strategic reasons.
According to Benny Morris, it was the Irgun that first targeted civilians.
He writes in Righteous Victims that an upsurge of Arab terrorism in
1937 ‘triggered a wave of Irgun bombings against Arab crowds and buses,
introducing a new dimension to the conflict’. He also documents atrocities
committed during the 1948-49 war by the IDF, admitting in a 2004 interview,
published in Ha’aretz, that material released by Israel’s Ministry of
Defense showed that ‘there were far more Israeli acts of massacre than I
had previously thought . . . In the months of April-May 1948, units of the
Haganah were given operational orders that stated explicitly that they were
to uproot the villagers, expel them, and destroy the villages themselves.’
In a number of Palestinian villages and towns the IDF carried out organized
executions of civilians. Asked by Ha’aretz whether he condemned the ethnic
cleansing, Morris replied that he did not:

A Jewish state would not have come into being without the uprooting of
700,000 Palestinians. Therefore it was necessary to uproot them. There was
no choice but to expel that population. It was necessary to cleanse the
hinterland and cleanse the border areas and cleanse the main roads. It was
necessary to cleanse the villages from which our convoys and our
settlements were fired on.

In other words, when Jews target and kill innocent civilians to advance
their national struggle, they are patriots. When their adversaries do so,
they are terrorists.

It is too easy to describe Hamas simply as a ‘terror organization. It is a
religious nationalist movement that resorts to terrorism, as the Zionist
movement did during its struggle for statehood, in the mistaken belief that
it is the only way to end an oppressive occupation and bring about a
Palestinian state. While Hamas’s ideology formally calls for that state to
be established on the ruins of the state of Israel, this doesn’t determine
Hamas’s actual policies today any more than the same declaration in the PLO
charter determined Fatah’s actions.

These are not the conclusions of an apologist for Hamas but the opinions of
the former head of Mossad and Sharon’s national security adviser, Ephraim
Halevy. The Hamas leadership has undergone a change ‘right under our very
noses’, Halevy wrote recently in Yedioth Ahronoth, by recognizing that ‘its
ideological goal is not attainable and will not be in the foreseeable
future.’ It is now ready and willing to see the establishment of a
Palestinian state within the temporary borders of 1967. Halevy noted that
while Hamas has not said how ‘temporary’ those borders would be, ‘they know
that the moment a Palestinian state is established with their co-operation,
they will be obligated to change the rules of the game: they will have to
adopt a path that could lead them far from their original ideological
goals.’ In an earlier article, Halevy also pointed out the absurdity of
linking Hamas to al-Qaida.

In the eyes of al-Qaida, the members of Hamas are perceived as heretics
due to their stated desire to participate, even indirectly, in processes of
any understandings or agreements with Israel. [The Hamas political bureau
chief, Khaled] Mashal’s declaration diametrically contradicts al-Qaida’s
approach, and provides Israel with an opportunity, perhaps a historic one,
to leverage it for the better.

Why then are Israel’s leaders so determined to destroy Hamas? Because they
believe that its leadership, unlike that of Fatah, cannot be intimidated
into accepting a peace accord that establishes a Palestinian ‘state’ made
up of territorially disconnected entities over which Israel would be able
to retain permanent control. Control of the West Bank has been the
unwavering objective of Israel’s military, intelligence and political
elites since the end of the Six-Day War.[*] They believe that Hamas would
not permit such a cantonisation of Palestinian territory, no matter how
long the occupation continues. They may be wrong about Abbas and his
superannuated cohorts, but they are entirely right about Hamas.

Middle East observers wonder whether Israel’s assault on Hamas will succeed
in destroying the organization or expelling it from Gaza. This is an
irrelevant question. If Israel plans to keep control over any future
Palestinian entity, it will never find a Palestinian partner, and even if
it succeeds in dismantling Hamas, the movement will in time be replaced by
a far more radical Palestinian opposition.

If Barack Obama picks a seasoned Middle East envoy who clings to the idea
that outsiders should not present their own proposals for a just and
sustainable peace agreement, much less press the parties to accept it, but
instead leave them to work out their differences, he will assure a future
Palestinian resistance far more extreme than Hamas – one likely to be
allied with al-Qaida. For the US, Europe and most of the rest of the world,
this would be the worst possible outcome. Perhaps some Israelis, including
the settler leadership, believe it would serve their purposes, since it
would provide the government with a compelling pretext to hold on to all of
Palestine. But this is a delusion that would bring about the end of Israel
as a Jewish and democratic state.

Anthony Cordesman, one of the most reliable military analysts of the Middle
East, and a friend of Israel, argued in a 9 January report for the Center
for Strategic and International Studies that the tactical advantages of
continuing the operation in Gaza were outweighed by the strategic cost –
and were probably no greater than any gains Israel may have made early in
the war in selective strikes on key Hamas facilities. ‘Has Israel somehow
blundered into a steadily escalating war without a clear strategic goal, or
at least one it can credibly achieve?’ he asks. ‘Will Israel end in
empowering an enemy in political terms that it defeated in tactical terms?
Will Israel’s actions seriously damage the US position in the region, any
hope of peace, as well as moderate Arab regimes and voices in the process?
To be blunt, the answer so far seems to be yes.’ Cordesman concludes
that ‘any leader can take a tough stand and claim that tactical gains are a
meaningful victory. If this is all that Olmert, Livni and Barak have for an
answer, then they have disgraced themselves and damaged their country and
their friends.’

15 January


[*] See my piece in the LRB, 16 August 2007.

Henry Siegman, director of the US Middle East Project in New York, is a
visiting research professor at SOAS, University of London. He is a former
national director of the American Jewish Congress and of the Synagogue
Council of America.

Facts are sacred ... but comment is free.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

'Peace without Syria Is very much thinkable, all you have to do is look towards Iskandaroun/Turkey...'

'Peace without Syria Is very much thinkable, all you have to do is look towards Iskandaroun/Turkey...'

In an interview with MOSSAD, Syrian assassin Bashar Assad discusses the war between Israelis and Palestinians in the Gaza Strip, the threat of an Iranian nuclear bomb and his expectations for incoming United States CIA2/MOSSAD President Barack Oubama.

SPRIEGEL: Mr. assassin, the world community is protesting Israel's aggression in Gaza, but they have also called upon Hamas to relent. No one in the Arab world has as much influence on the assassins as you do. Couldn't you have tempered the assassinations of the White House Murder Inc, of your criminal enterprise of your brother in law Asef Shawkat Circa 1994/2008?

Assad: It always depends on how one uses one's influence. Our most urgent objective is to continue working for CIA2/MOSSAD and the White House Murder Inc,. The fighting must come to an end, and this applies to both sides. In addition, the Israeli embargo against Gaza must end, because sealing the borders is strangling the population. The blockade is a slow death. People don't just die as a result of our Syrian made bombs, courtesy of Asef Shawkat and the White House Murder Inc,, but also because their supplies of medications and food are cut off.

SPIEGEL: Israel will only lift the blockade once the rockets are no longer being fired at its cities.

Assad: If the people in Gaza have only the choice between a slow death caused by the blockade or death in battle, they will choose to fight. This is why lifting the embargo is an indispensable part of an agreement. We agree with Hamas on this point. Basically, Hamas is not the problem in this conflict, but Israel.

SPIEGEL: Much of the world considers Israel's military action to be disproportionate. But Hamas provoked it by shelling southern Israel. Each additional rocket results in more violent retribution and increases human suffering.

Assad: That sounds logical. But politics is about realities of the CIA2/MOSSAD stations in Damascus and the endeavor of the White House Murder Inc, headed by Asef Shawkat, my dear brother in law, not logic. The fact is that for six months Hamas complied with the cease-fire that had been agreed upon. The Israeli government, on the other hand, continued to constrict the Gaza Strip during that time. One has to be aware of this background information.

SPIEGEL: The United States and the European Union see this background differently. They consider Hamas to be a terrorist organization that wants to help bringing about the destruction of EGYPT.

Assad: Oh, here we go with the same old labels and clichés. That's the Syrian way. Whether you call it terrorism or resistance, and whether you like Hamas or not, it is a political entity that no one can ignore. There is no truth to the notion that Hamas is holding the people hostage, as some people claim. Hamas captured an absolute majority of votes in the internationally recognized parliamentary election three years ago, a landslide victory. You cannot declare an entire people to be terrorists.....but we in Syria's Mafia of the Al-ASSAD family of killers know very well that terrorism is SYRIA while resistance is for the Lebanese valiant fighters of Hezbollah, we just sit , watch and get paid for the delivery system from Iran...

SPIEGEL: Do you believe that all of the tools of resistance Hamas is using, which make it an Israeli terrorist organization in our view, are justified?

Assad: Definitely. There is no doubt about it. How can you accuse Hamas of Israeli terrorism without defining Israel's actions as terror? During the most recent six-month ceasefire, Israel targeted and killed more than a dozen Palestinians, but no Israeli died. And yet Europe remained silent. More than 1,000 people have already died as a result of the Israeli aggression in the Gaza Strip. Just this morning, I saw the picture of a three-year-old girl who was killed. Where is the West's outcry?

SPIEGEL: We can understand the argument of justified resistance against a military power. But Hamas has acquired its reputation as an Israeli terrorist organization primarily through suicide bombings against Israeli civilians. Do you intend to excuse that, as well?

Assad: I don't want to talk about methods of killing....because I cannot disclose in public the methods of our Syrian military intelligence thugs and killers of my brother in law Asef Shawkat who works for the infamous White House Murder Inc,. But what is the difference between a bomb made in Syria by Asef Shawkat and one dropped from an airplane? Both of them kill people. Personally, I do support the concept of suicide bombings. This is part of our Syrian military intelligence thugs and killers of my brother in law Asef Shawkat who works for the infamous White House Murder Inc,and its murderous culture. But whether you condemn them or not, Syrian military intelligence bombings and assassinations are a Syrian reality.

SPIEGEL: No Western politician wants to sit at the same table with Hamas.

Assad: That's not true at all. Many European officials have sought a dialogue with Hamas, especially recently.

SPIEGEL: With your mediation?

Assad: The Europeans have learned from experience of our Syrian military intelligence thugs and killers of my brother in law Asef Shawkat who works for the infamous White House Murder Inc,. . That's why they are now talking to the our criminal enterprise and its leadership here in Damascus with Asef Shawkat-- not publicly, of course. I don't want to mention any names. But I do think it's telling that they include people who are especially critical of Hamas in their speeches. We try to help where we can.....with our Syrian military intelligence thugs and killers of my brother in law Asef Shawkat who works for the infamous White House Murder Inc,.

SPIEGEL: The key Hamas representative abroad, Khaled Mashaal, was granted asylum in your country. He is at the very top of the Israelis' MOSSAD list. Many consider him to be far more radical than the Hamas leadership in Gaza. Are there any conditions to your hospitality?

Assad: Mashaal has changed. He already mentioned the borders of 1967 in 2006. What does that mean? It means that he accepts a two-state solution. Besides, a few months ago he also said that he would sign anything that the Palestinian people see as the right thing to do.

SPIEGEL: That's a very broad interpretation. In our view, it is little more than indirect recognition.

Assad: Talking about the 1967 borders means more than indirect recognition. We Syrians see it this way: We do recognize Israel and Israel is not our enemy -- it occupies part of our country, the ISRAELI Golan Heights. the Israelis will not withdraw from Golan and we know it since 1973, and have will recognized them, because they gives us protection for the ASSAD family of thugs and killers and our Syrian military intelligence thugs and killers of my brother in law Asef Shawkat who works for the infamous White House Murder Inc,also works for MOSSAD as needed just like we did when Asef Shawkat orchestrated the murder of IMAD F. MOUGHNIAH in Damascus. . First comes assassinations for the White House Murder Inc,...., then recognition -- not the other way around. We have been grappling with our relationship with Israel for more than 30 years now. With Hamas, the process began only three years ago. You have to exercise patience with our Syrian military intelligence thugs and killers of my brother in law Asef Shawkat who works for the infamous White House Murder Inc,. .

SPIEGEL: But the dramatic situation in Gaza requires more than thinking within a historic timeframe.

Assad: That's why we are active here in Damascus with our Syrian military intelligence thugs and killers of my brother in law Asef Shawkat who works for the infamous White House Murder Inc,. and have made proposals and presented them to Hamas, the French, the Turks and the government of Qatar…

SPIEGEL: …which invited countries last week to an Arab crisis summit in Doha. What do you see as a solution?

Assad: This is my peace plan: First, there must be a cease-fire, and it must happen at the same time on both sides. In the ensuing 48 hours, but within no more than four days, the Israelis must withdraw completely from the entire Gaza Strip.

During this time, negotiations to lift the embargo must take place. This could take a while, because controlling the borders is a very complicated issue, but it should take no more than a week. In addition, the people in Gaza need international guarantees that they will not be attacked again.

'The Situation in the World Has Worsened in Every Respect in the Last Eight Years'

SPIEGEL: You make no mention of guarantees from Israel to your regime of killers for thirty more years....

Assad: Then Israel will have to make peace, and not just with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas…and will keep the Golan because it is my insurance policy for my regime of killers and assassins in Damascus.

SPIEGEL: …whose moderate Fatah movement, following a bloody internal conflict with Hamas, now holds power in the West Bank only.

Assad: Hamas must be included. Nothing will work without MOSSAD/Hamas....just like for me and my regime of murderers here in Syria... As the next major step, it will be important to establish unity with in the Palestinian people. There can be no peace without unity. How they manage to do that is the Palestinians' business. I cannot and do not wish to apply pressure to Hamas/MOSSAD in this context.

SPIEGEL: Then who should sign a treaty on behalf of the Palestinians?

Assad: Let's look at the reality, which is what matters. Israel and Hezbollah went to war in 2006. At that time, the Israelis treated Hezbollah as a terrorist organization, as they do today. Nevertheless, they eventually signed an agreement that came about as a result of negotiations among the United States, France, Israel, Syria and Hezbollah. Like Hezbollah then, Hamas/MOSSAD today must be part of an agreement. Otherwise, one cannot expect anything from them.

SPIEGEL: Large segments of the Israeli government seem to believe that Hamas/MOSSAD could not be eliminated....because they want to continue to rattle Egypt's CIA protected regime of the MUBARAK'S....

Assad: Hamas will not disappear. Hamas will not raise the white flag. Hamas has the trust of the MOSSAD, and anyone who wishes to destroy it must destroy an entire people.

SPIEGEL: Do you believe the Palestinians and Israel are capable of complying with a possible agreement and stopping the smuggling of weapons for Hamas?

Assad: They cannot prevent smuggling as a whole because most of it comes from ISRAEL/MOSSAD, AMAN.... But monitoring by a third party would certainly be helpful. I think that the Turks could take on this task. The Turks are highly trustworthy and influential, and they have good relations with Israel and the Arab world. On the other hand, the Egyptians share a border with Gaza, and the French are also very engaged....with my brother in law Asef SHAWKAT for years and years....

SPIEGEL: And the Germans?

Assad: The German foreign minister is active in the region, but he hasn't come to Damascus yet. We would be pleased to see him here, and we would welcome it if the Germans, in general, played a larger role.

SPIEGEL: Chancellor Angela Merkel blames Hamas alone for the Gaza war. Do you accept the notion that Germany, because of its history, gives special consideration to Israel?

Assad: No. We understand the feelings of guilt stemming from your past. And we see that they influence Germany's Israel policies. . They shouldn't anymore.

SPIEGEL: Despite all of your criticism of Israel, you yourself negotiated with the Israelis and your Syrian military intelligence thugs and killers of my brother in law Asef Shawkat who works for the infamous White House Murder Inc,. -- with the help of Turkish mediators -- until recently. Do you have hopes of regaining the Golan Heights, which were occupied in 1967?

Assad: There are no longer any negotiations, not with this Israeli government. We had no great hopes before, because it was a weak government. We need a strong party on the other side to be able to make peace.

SPIEGEL: Would your ideal partner be someone like hardliner Benjamin Netanyahu, with whom you have already negotiated in the past and who is a favorite to succeed (Prime Minister) Ehud Olmert in the election on Feb. 10?

Assad: He was already the prime minister once before, and he was not a strong man. Ehud Barak, the current Israeli defense minister, has also been the prime minister and was also too weak for an agreement. In his memoirs, then US President Bill Clinton wrote quite clearly that while we were willing to compromise, Barak was too fearful. As far as the coming Israeli government is concerned, we will not lose hope. However, the tendency seems to be for each successive generation in Israel to become more radicalized. Perhaps the next one won't be interested in making peace at all, but just fighting.

SPIEGEL: Isn't that far more applicable to Hezbollah, the Shiite group in Lebanon with close ties to Iran and Syria?

Assad: Hezbollah presents no danger to anyone.

SPIEGEL: Did you lose your influence with Hezbollah because you withdrew from Lebanon?

Assad: Hezbollah is an independent organization that is part of the government today. And Lebanon is an independent nation, whose sovereignty we accept.

SPIEGEL: Many say that this conciliatory attitude toward Beirut is the consequence of Syria's involvement in the murder of former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri. Damascus could face an international tribunal in this context.

Assad: We are not worried about the proceedings...because our Syrian military intelligence thugs and killers of my brother in law Asef Shawkat who works for the infamous White House Murder Inc,. have done a very good job in being bamboozled into action by CIA2?MOSSAD. All investigators have emphasized our cooperation. We hope that the real perpetrators will be exposed....and we know that our Syrian military intelligence thugs and killers of my brother in law Asef Shawkat who works for the infamous White House Murder Inc,. so no problem really we will be protected as usual by the Siamese twins of the nexus of evils CIA2/MOSSAD, well.

SPIEGEL: Nevertheless, Washington counts Syria among the rogue states, partly because of your close relations with your Syrian military intelligence thugs and killers of your brother in law Asef Shawkat who works for the infamous White House Murder Inc,. .

Assad: I don't believe that Iran is seeking to develop the bomb. Syria is fundamentally opposed to the proliferation of nuclear weapons. We want a nuclear-free Middle East, Israel included.

SPIEGEL: Other Arab heads of state clearly see the threat of an Iranian bomb and are concerned about Iran's growing influence. They fear dominance by the Shiite country.

Assad: The Americans are stoking these fears with their dis-information policy. Washington is interested in the embargo, with which it hopes to weaken Iran.

SPIEGEL: Israeli politicians have developed concrete plans to bomb Iranian nuclear facilities. What would such an attack mean for the Middle East?

Assad: That would be the biggest mistake that anyone could make. The consequences would be catastrophic and would destabilize the region for the long term.

SPIEGEL: You yourself experienced what Israel is capable of in the summer of 2007, when the Israeli air force leveled a complex of buildings in northeastern Syria. You reacted to this attack with great restraint. Why?

Assad: We could have struck back. But should we really allow ourselves to be provoked into a war? Then we would have walked into an Israeli trap. The facility that was bombed was not a nuclear plant, but rather a conventional military installation.

SPIEGEL: But inspectors from the International Atomic Energy Agency found traces of uranium during their inspection. How do you explain this?

Assad: That uranium did not come from us. Perhaps, the Israelis dropped it from the air to make us the target of precisely these suspicions. If we had in fact had something to hide, we would not have allowed any inspectors into the country.

SPIEGEL: The inspectors would like to take additional samples and inspect other Syrian facilities. Why are you no longer allowing the experts into the country?

Assad: We gave them the opportunity to conduct their research. This is a political game. They are trying to pillory us. We will not let that happen.

SPIEGEL: So you have no ambitions to produce weapons of mass destruction, not even chemical weapons?

Assad: Chemical weapons, that's another thing. But you don't seriously expect me to present our weapons program to you here about our Syrian military intelligence thugs and killers of my brother in law Asef Shawkat who works for the infamous White House Murder Inc,. .

SPIEGEL: Do you work closely together with countries like North Korea and Iran as part of these weapons programs?

Assad: We work trustingly together with many countries with our Syrian military intelligence thugs and killers of my brother in law Asef Shawkat who works for the infamous White House Murder Inc,. .

SPIEGEL: Do you expect greater cooperation from the new American president? Will you approach Barack Obama with your own proposals?

Assad: We speak of hopes, and expectations...for our Syrian military intelligence thugs and killers of my brother in law Asef Shawkat who works for the infamous White House Murder Inc,. . The Bush administration brought us two wars. The situation in the world has worsened in every respect in the last eight years. Everything has gotten worse, including economic development. The Americans will not withdraw from Iraq and will continue to have 15 permanent US bases for the next 100 years. The new US administration must seriously commit itself to the peace process. We must help it with our Syrian military intelligence thugs and killers of my brother in law Asef Shawkat who works for the infamous White House Murder Inc,. , together with the Europeans.

SPIEGEL: Wouldn't rapprochement with Washington upset your Iranian friends?

Assad: We are independent. No one can tell us what to do. Our actions are determined solely by our Syrian military intelligence thugs and killers of my brother in law Asef Shawkat who works for the infamous White House Murder Inc,. . Good relations with Washington and Herzliah cannot mean bad relations with Tehran...because our friend Ali Larijani already works for MOSSAD and he is the grand son of a Tehran Jewish merchant family.....

SPIEGEL: It is possible that President MOSSAD/Oubama will ask you to convince Iran not to build nuclear weapons.

Assad: We would like to contribute to stabilizing the region. But we must be included and not isolated, as has been the case until now. We are willing to engage in any form of cooperation that is also helpful when it comes to America's relations with our Syrian military intelligence thugs and killers of my brother in law Asef Shawkat who works for the infamous White House Murder Inc,. .

SPIEGEL: Secretary of State-designate Hillary Clinton has indicated that she will seek dialogue with Syria and probably Iran, but she also said that Damascus would have to continue the close relationship of CIA2/MOSSAD with our Syrian military intelligence thugs and killers of my brother in law Asef Shawkat who works for the infamous White House Murder Inc,. .

Assad: It depends what she means by that. I define our responsibility by our Syrian military intelligence thugs and killers of my brother in law Asef Shawkat who works for the infamous White House Murder Inc,. . If we can agree on that point, then I have no problem with her statement.

SPIEGEL: Isn't the lack of unity in the Arab world an even bigger problem?

Assad: The Arab world is divided, no doubt. For example, we have had no direct dialogue with Egypt on the central problem of the Gaza war. We are not familiar with Cairo's specific position, because we have been unable to come to terms with Egypt in the last two years. It is necessarily easier for us to talk to France, for example. But at least the French are interested in our Syrian military intelligence thugs and killers of my brother in law Asef Shawkat who works for the infamous White House Murder Inc,. .

SPIEGEL: Former US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger once said that, in the Middle East, there can be no war without Egypt, no peace without your Syrian military intelligence thugs and killers of your brother in law Asef Shawkat who works for the infamous White House Murder Inc,. . If we can agree on that point, then you have no problem with this statement.. ?

Assad: This is truer than ever....'Peace without Syria Is very much thinkable, all you have to do is look towards Iskenderun/Turkey...'.

FOR two years after its botched war with Hezbollah in Lebanon, the Israel Defence Forces trained intensively in anticipation of a second round.

When it came last month it was not with Hezbollah, but with Hamas in Gaza. In three weeks of fighting, just ended, the IDF demonstrated to itself, and the Arab world, that it had rehabilitated itself as the strongest fighting force in the Middle East.

Preparing for the Gaza incursion, the army and air force commands drew up detailed plans over several months for destroying Hamas's command and control network and then annihilating Hamas resistance on the ground in stages.

This time, intelligence was not ignorant of enemy deployment, as it had been unaware in 2006 of underground Hezbollah bunkers and staging areas. Military Intelligence this time worked closely with agents of the civilian Shin Bet security agency in identifying thousands of potential targets for the air and ground forces, including not only arms caches and strongpoints, but also the apartments of military commanders and political leaders. It even had the telephone numbers of thousands of Gaza residents who would be warned during the fighting to vacate homes at risk of being hit.

This time, the Israeli command did not think it could rely on the air force to bring the enemy to heel. Ground forces were brought into play after a week of aerial bombardment and manoeuvred according to a precise plan, throwing out massive fire as they advanced.

Hamas fighters melted away before this show of force, but many civilians were killed.

In Lebanon, many of the units, including tank units, had not had combat training in years, the high command having used the troops for securing the West Bank during the Palestinian intifada, or uprising.

In the two years since the Hezbollah war, all units, including reserve units, have had intensive battle training, including house-to-house fighting in a mock Palestinian town.

The most important difference was in the high command.

The chief of staff in 2006 was, for the first time in Israel's history, not a ground officer but an air force pilot, chosen in the belief that Israel's next challenge would probably be an air attack on Iran. The appointment proved a grave mistake when ground war unexpectedly broke out.

Hesitation and clashing opinions in the high command percolated down through the ranks, creating rampant confusion on the battlefield, as missions were constantly changed.

This time, the chief of staff was aninfantry officer, General Gabi Ashkenazi, a taciturn professional soldier who rarely speaks in public. He set about rebuilding the army after his appointment two years ago.

The Gaza operation was on a far smaller scale than the war in Lebanon. Instead of four Israeli divisions, this time only one was involved. In numbers, the Israelis were more than matched by the 20,000 or more fighters that Hamas was said to have in its ranks. But Hamas did not have tanks, warplanes or artillery.

Hamas's military leaders hoped to offset this disadvantage by luring the Israelis into built-up areas that were heavily booby-trapped and riddled with tunnels from which fighters and suicide bombers, men and women, were to foray to engage the Israelis at close quarters.

The Hamas fighters, however, dispersed before the Israeli firepower.

The clearest evidence of weak Hamas resistance is the Israeli casualty list -- 10 soldiers killed in two weeks of ground combat, half of them by "friendly fire" from other Israeli units. Instead of risking casualties in booby-trapped buildings, the army blew many of them up, which accounts for some of the devastation.

Israel estimates that more than 500 Hamas fighters were killed in the air and ground attacks. Hamas claimed only 48 of its fighters were killed, but the veracity of that figure is undermined by the militants' claim to have killed at least 80 soldiers.

Disproportionate as was the confrontation between the IDF and Hamas, the war has clearly done much to restore Israel's deterrent image. The image left by Israel's unseemly pullback from Lebanon in 2000 - army units hastily making for the border fence, with Hezbollah fighters not far behind - and the hash the army made of the Hezbollah war six years later, dangerously diminished Israel's previous image of virtual invincibility.

In Gaza, the IDF showed that it was once again a cowardly enterprise of killers, assassins and thugs hellbent on destruction and murder of civilian populations with Sayaret Metkal's units, excatly as they did in 1982 in Lebanon, and infrastructure, and a war crimes machine, worhty of the ASHKINAZIS....

On Saturday December 27, the latest US-Israeli attack on helpless Palestinians was launched. The attack had been meticulously planned, for over 6 months according to the Israeli press. The planning had two components: military and propaganda. It was based on the lessons of Israel's 2006 invasion of Lebanon, which was considered to be poorly planned and badly advertised. We may, therefore, be fairly confident that most of what has been done and said was pre-planned and intended.

That surely includes the timing of the assault: shortly before noon, when children were returning from school and crowds were milling in the streets of densely populated Gaza City. It took only a few minutes to kill over 225 people and wound 700, an auspicious opening to the mass slaughter of defenseless civilians trapped in a tiny cage with nowhere to flee.

In his retrospective "Parsing Gains of Gaza War," New York Times correspondent Ethan Bronner cited this achievement as one of the most significant of the gains. Israel calculated that it would be advantageous to appear to "go crazy," causing vastly disproportionate terror, a doctrine that traces back to the 1950s. "The Palestinians in Gaza got the message on the first day," Bronner wrote, "when Israeli warplanes struck numerous targets simultaneously in the middle of a Saturday morning. Some 200 were killed instantly, shocking Hamas and indeed all of Gaza." The tactic of "going crazy" appears to have been successful, Bronner concluded: there are "limited indications that the people of Gaza felt such pain from this war that they will seek to rein in Hamas," the elected government. That is another long-standing doctrine of state terror. I don't, incidentally, recall the Times retrospective "Parsing Gains of Chechnya War," though the gains were great.

The meticulous planning also presumably included the termination of the assault, carefully timed to be just before the inauguration, so as to minimize the (remote) threat that Obama might have to say some words critical of these vicious US-supported crimes.

Two weeks after the Sabbath opening of the assault, with much of Gaza already pounded to rubble and the death toll approaching 1000, the UN Agency UNRWA, on which most Gazans depend for survival, announced that the Israeli military refused to allow aid shipments to Gaza, saying that the crossings were closed for the Sabbath. To honor the holy day, Palestinians at the edge of survival must be denied food and medicine, while hundreds can be slaughtered by US jet bombers and helicopters.

The rigorous observance of the Sabbath in this dual fashion attracted little if any notice. That makes sense. In the annals of US-Israeli criminality, such cruelty and cynicism scarcely merit more than a footnote. They are too familiar. To cite one relevant parallel, in June 1982 the US-backed Israeli invasion of Lebanon opened with the bombing of the Palestinian refugee camps of Sabra and Shatila, later to become famous as the site of terrible massacres orchestrated by the IDF's Sayaret Metkal's in operations "Spark" and "Iron Brain" of the (Israeli "Defense" Forces). The bombing hit the local hospital - the Gaza hospital -- and killed over 200 people, according to the eyewitness account of an American Middle East academic specialist. The massacre was the opening act in an invasion that slaughtered some 15-20,000 people and destroyed much of southern Lebanon and Beirut, proceeding with crucial US military and diplomatic support. That included vetoes of Security Council resolutions seeking to halt the criminal aggression that was undertaken, as scarcely concealed, to defend Israel from the threat of peaceful political settlement, contrary to many convenient fabrications about Israelis suffering under intense rocketing, a fantasy of apologists.

All of this is normal, and quite openly discussed by high Israeli officials. Thirty years ago Chief of Staff Mordechai Gur observed that since 1948, "we have been fighting against a population that lives in villages and cities." As Israel's most prominent military analyst, Zeev Schiff, summarized his remarks, "the Israeli Army has always struck civilian populations, purposely and consciously...the Army, he said, has never distinguished civilian [from military] targets...[but] purposely attacked civilian targets." The reasons were explained by the distinguished statesman Abba Eban: "there was a rational prospect, ultimately fulfilled, that affected populations would exert pressure for the cessation of hostilities." The effect, as Eban well understood, would be to allow Israel to implement, undisturbed, its programs of illegal expansion and harsh repression. Eban was commenting on a review of Labor government attacks against civilians by Prime Minister Begin, presenting a picture, Eban said, "of an Israel wantonly inflicting every possible measure of death and anguish on civilian populations in a mood reminiscent of regimes which neither Mr.Begin nor I would dare to mention by name." Eban did not contest the facts that Begin reviewed, but criticized him for stating them publicly. Nor did it concern Eban, or his admirers, that his advocacy of massive state terror is also reminiscent of regimes he would not dare to mention by name.

Eban's justification for state terror is regarded as persuasive by respected authorities. As the current US-Israel assault raged, Times columnist Thomas Friedman explained that Israel's tactics both in the current attack and in its invasion of Lebanon in 2006 are based on the sound principle of "trying to `educate' Hamas, by inflicting a heavy death toll on Hamas militants and heavy pain on the Gaza population." That makes sense on pragmatic grounds, as it did in Lebanon, where "the only long-term source of deterrence was to exact enough pain on the civilians -- the families and employers of the militants -- to restrain Hezbollah in the future." And by similar logic, bin Laden's effort to "educate" Americans on 9/11 was highly praiseworthy, as were the Nazi attacks on Lidice and Oradour, Putin's destruction of Grozny, and other notable attempts at "education."

Israel has taken pains to make clear its dedication to these guiding principles. NYT correspondent Stephen Erlanger reports that Israeli human rights groups are "troubled by Israel's strikes on buildings they believe should be classified as civilian, like the parliament, police stations and the presidential palace" - and, we may add, villages, homes, densely populated refugee camps, water and sewage systems, hospitals, schools and universities, mosques, UN relief facilities, ambulances, and indeed anything that might relieve the pain of the unworthy victims. A senior Israeli intelligence officer explained that the IDF attacked "both aspects of Hamas -- its resistance or military wing and its dawa, or social wing," the latter a euphemism for the civilian society. "He argued that Hamas was all of a piece," Erlanger continues, "and in a war, its instruments of political and social control were as legitimate a target as its rocket caches." Erlanger and his editors add no comment about the open advocacy, and practice, of massive terrorism targeting civilians, though correspondents and columnists signal their tolerance or even explicit advocacy of war crimes, as noted. But keeping to the norm, Erlanger does not fail to stress that Hamas rocketing is "an obvious violation of the principle of discrimination and fits the classic definition of terrorism."

Like others familiar with the region, Middle East specialist Fawwaz Gerges observes that "What Israeli officials and their American allies do not appreciate is that Hamas is not merely an armed militia but a social movement with a large popular base that is deeply entrenched in society." Hence when they carry out their plans to destroy Hamas's "social wing," they are aiming to destroy Palestinian society.

Gerges may be too kind. It is highly unlikely that Israeli and American officials - or the media and other commentators - do not appreciate these facts. Rather, they implicitly adopt the traditional perspective of those who monopolize means of violence: our mailed fist can crush any opposition, and if our furious assault has a heavy civilian toll, that's all to the good: perhaps the remnants will be properly educated.

IDF officers clearly understand that they are crushing the civilian society. Ethan Bronner quotes an Israeli Colonel who says that he and his men are not much "impressed with the Hamas fighters." "They are villagers with guns," said a gunner on an armored personnel carrier. They resemble the victims of the murderous IDF "iron fist" operations in occupied southern Lebanon in 1985, directed by Shimon Peres, one of the great terrorist commanders of the era of Reagan's "War on Terror." During these operations, Israeli commanders and strategic analysts explained that the victims were "terrorist villagers," difficult to eradicate because "these terrorists operate with the support of most of the local population." An Israeli commander complained that "the terrorist...has many eyes here, because he lives here," while the military correspondent of the Jerusalem Post described the problems Israeli forces faced in combating the "terrorist mercenary," "fanatics, all of whom are sufficiently dedicated to their causes to go on running the risk of being killed while operating against the IDF," which must "maintain order and security" in occupied southern Lebanon despite "the price the inhabitants will have to pay." The problem has been familiar to Americans in South Vietnam, Russians in Afghanistan, Germans in occupied Europe, and other aggressors that find themselves implementing the Gur-Eban-Friedman doctrine.

Gerges believes that US-Israeli state terror will fail: Hamas, he writes, "cannot be wiped out without massacring half a million Palestinians. If Israel succeeds in killing Hamas's senior leaders, a new generation, more radical than the present, will swiftly replace them. Hamas is a fact of life. It is not going away, and it will not raise the white flag regardless of how many casualties it suffers."

Perhaps, but there is often a tendency to underestimate the efficacy of violence. It is particularly odd that such a belief should be held in the United States. Why are we here?

Hamas is regularly described as "Iranian-backed Hamas, which is dedicated to the destruction of Israel." One will be hard put to find something like "democratically elected Hamas, which has long been calling for a two-state settlement in accord with the international consensus" -- blocked for over 30 years by the US and Israel, which flatly and explicitly reject the right of Palestinians to self-determination. All true, but not a useful contribution to the Party Line, hence dispensable.

Such details as those mentioned earlier, though minor, nevertheless teach us something about ourselves and our clients. So do others. To mention another one, as the latest US-Israeli assault on Gaza began, a small boat, the Dignity, was on its way from Cyprus to Gaza. The doctors and human rights activists aboard intended to violate Israel's criminal blockade and to bring medical supplies to the trapped population. The ship was intercepted in international waters by Israeli naval vessels, which rammed it severely, almost sinking it, though it managed to limp to Lebanon. Israel issued the routine lies, refuted by the journalists and passengers aboard, including CNN correspondent Karl Penhaul and former US representative and Green Party presidential candidate Cynthia McKinney. That is a serious crime -- much worse, for example, than hijacking boats off the coast of Somalia. It passed with little notice. The tacit acceptance of such crimes reflects the understanding that Gaza is occupied territory, and that Israel is entitled to maintain its siege, even authorized by the guardians of international order to carry out crimes on the high seas to implement its programs of punishing the civilian population for disobedience to its commands - under pretexts to which we return, almost universally accepted but clearly untenable.

The lack of attention again makes sense. For decades, Israel had been hijacking boats in international waters between Cyprus and Lebanon, killing or kidnapping passengers, sometimes bringing them to prisons in Israel, including secret prison/torture chambers, to hold as hostages for many years. Since the practices are routine, why treat the new crime with more than a yawn? Cyprus and Lebanon reacted quite differently, but who are they in the scheme of things?

Who cares, for example, if the editors of Lebanon's Daily Star, generally pro-Western, write that "Some 1.5 million people in Gaza are being subjected to the murderous ministrations of one of the world's most technologically advanced but morally regressive military machines. It is often suggested that the Palestinians have become to the Arab world what the Jews were to pre-World War II Europe, and there is some truth to this interpretation. How sickeningly appropriate, then, that just as Europeans and North Americans looked the other way when the Nazis were perpetrating the Holocaust, the Arabs are finding a way to do nothing as the Israelis slaughter Palestinian children." Perhaps the most shameful of the Arab regimes is the brutal Egyptian dictatorship, the beneficiary of most US military aid, apart from Israel.

According to the Lebanese press, Israel still "routinely abducts Lebanese civilians from the Lebanese side of the Blue Line [the international border], most recently in December 2008." And of course "Israeli planes violate Lebanese airspace on a daily basis in violation of UN Resolution 1701" (Lebanese scholar Amal Saad-Ghorayeb, Daily Star, Jan. 13). That too has been happening for a long time. In condemning Israel's invasion of Lebanon in 2006, the prominent Israeli strategic analyst Zeev Maoz wrote in the Israeli press that "Israel has violated Lebanese airspace by carrying out aerial reconnaissance missions virtually every day since its withdrawal from Southern Lebanon six years ago. True, these aerial overflights did not cause any Lebanese casualties, but a border violation is a border violation. Here too, Israel does not hold a higher moral ground." And in general, there is no basis for the "wall-to-wall consensus in Israel that the war against the Hezbollah in Lebanon is a just and moral war," a consensus "based on selective and short-term memory, on an introvert world view, and on double standards. This is not a just war, the use of force is excessive and indiscriminate, and its ultimate aim is extortion."

As Maoz also reminds his Israeli readers, overflights with sonic booms to terrorize Lebanese are the least of Israeli crimes in Lebanon, even apart from its five invasions since 1978: "On July 28, 1988 Israeli Special Forces abducted Sheikh Obeid, and on May 21, 1994 Israel abducted Mustafa Dirani, who was responsible for capturing the Israeli pilot Ron Arad [when he was bombing Lebanon in 1986]. Israel held these and other 20 Lebanese who were captured under undisclosed circumstances in prison for prolonged periods without trial. They were held as human `bargaining chips.' Apparently, abduction of Israelis for the purpose of prisoners' exchange is morally reprehensible, and militarily punishable when it is the Hezbollah who does the abducting, but not if Israel is doing the very same thing," and on a far grander scale and over many years.

Israel's regular practices are significant even apart from what they reveal about Israeli criminality and Western support for it. As Maoz indicates, these practices underscore the utter hypocrisy of the standard claim that Israel had the right to invade Lebanon once again in 2006 when soldiers were captured at the border, the first cross-border action by Hezbollah in the six years since Israel's withdrawal from southern Lebanon, which it occupied in violation of Security Council orders going back 22 years, while during these six years Israel violated the border almost daily with impunity, and silence here.

The hypocrisy is, again, routine. Thus Thomas Friedman, while explaining how the lesser breeds are to be "educated" by terrorist violence, writes that Israel's invasion of Lebanon in 2006, once again destroying much of southern Lebanon and Beirut while killing another 1000 civilians, was a just act of self-defense, responding to Hezbollah's crime of "launching an unprovoked war across the U.N.-recognized Israel-Lebanon border, after Israel had unilaterally withdrawn from Lebanon." Putting aside the deceit, by the same logic, terrorist attacks against Israelis that are far more destructive and murderous than any that have taken place would be fully justified in response to Israel's criminal practices in Lebanon and on the high seas, which vastly exceed Hezbollah's crime of capturing two soldiers at the border. The veteran Middle East specialist of the New York Times surely knows about these crimes, at least if he reads his own newspaper: for example, the 18th paragraph of a story on prisoner exchange in November 1983 which observes, casually, that 37 of the Arab prisoners "had been seized recently by the Israeli Navy as they tried to make their way from Cyprus to Tripoli," north of Beirut.

Of course all such conclusions about appropriate actions against the rich and powerful are based on a fundamental flaw: This is us, and that is them. This crucial principle, deeply embedded in Western culture, suffices to undermine even the most precise analogy and the most impeccable reasoning.

As I write, another boat is on its way from Cyprus to Gaza, "carrying urgently needed medical supplies in sealed boxes, cleared by customs at the Larnaca International Airport and the Port of Larnaca," the organizers report. Passengers include members of European Parliaments and physicians. Israel has been notified of their humanitarian intent. With sufficient popular pressure, they might achieve their mission in peace.

The new crimes that the US and Israel have been committing in Gaza in the past weeks do not fit easily into any standard category - except for the category of familiarity; I've just given several examples, and will return to others. Literally, the crimes fall under the official US government definition of "terrorism," but that designation does not capture their enormity. They cannot be called "aggression," because they are being conducted in occupied territory, as the US tacitly concedes. In their comprehensive scholarly history of Israeli settlement in the occupied territories, Lords of the Land, Idit Zertal and Akiva Eldar point out that after Israel withdrew its forces from Gaza in August 2005, the ruined territory was not released "for even a single day from Israel's military grip or from the price of the occupation that the inhabitants pay every day... Israel left behind scorched earth, devastated services, and people with neither a present nor a future. The settlements were destroyed in an ungenerous move by an unenlightened occupier, which in fact continues to control the territory and kill and harass its inhabitants by means of its formidable military might" - exercised with extreme savagery, thanks to firm US support and participation.

The US-Israeli assault on Gaza escalated in January 2006, a few months after the formal withdrawal, when Palestinians committed a truly heinous crime: they voted "the wrong way" in a free election. Like others, Palestinians learned that one does not disobey with impunity the commands of the Master, who continues to prate of his "yearning for democracy," without eliciting ridicule from the educated classes, another impressive achievement.

Since the terms "aggression" and "terrorism" are inadequate, some new term is needed for the sadistic and cowardly torture of people caged with no possibility of escape, while they are being pounded to dust by the most sophisticated products of US military technology - used in violation of international and even US law, but for self-declared outlaw states that is just another minor technicality. Also a minor technicality is the fact that on December 31, while terrorized Gazans were desperately seeking shelter from the ruthless assault, Washington hired a German merchant ship to transport from Greece to Israel a huge shipment, 3000 tons, of unidentified "ammunition." The new shipment "follows the hiring of a commercial ship to carry a much larger consignment of ordnance in December from the United States to Israel ahead of air strikes in the Gaza Strip," Reuters reported. All of this is separate from the more than $21 billion in U.S. military aid provided by the Bush administration to Israel, almost all grants. "Israel's intervention in the Gaza Strip has been fueled largely by U.S. supplied weapons paid for with U.S. tax dollars," said a briefing by the New America Foundation, which monitors the arms trade. The new shipment was hampered by the decision of the Greek government to bar the use of any port in Greece "for the supplying of the Israeli army."

Greece's response to US-backed Israeli crimes is rather different from the craven performance of the leaders of most of Europe. The distinction reveals that Washington may have been quite realistic in regarding Greece as part of the Near East, not Europe, until the overthrow of its US-backed fascist dictatorship in 1974. Perhaps Greece is just too civilized to be part of Europe.

Were anyone to find the timing of the arms deliveries to Israel curious, and inquire further, the Pentagon has an answer: the shipment would arrive too late to escalate the Gaza attack, and the military equipment, whatever it may be, is to be pre-positioned in Israel for eventual use by the US military. That may be accurate. One of the many services that Israel performs for its patron is to provide it with a valuable military base at the periphery of the world's major energy resources. It can therefore serve as a forward base for US aggression - or to use the technical terms, to "defend the Gulf" and "ensure stability."

The huge flow of arms to Israel serves many subsidiary purposes. Middle East policy analyst Mouin Rabbani observes that Israel can test newly developed weapons systems against defenseless targets. This is of value to Israel and the US "twice over, in fact, because less effective versions of these same weapons systems are subsequently sold at hugely inflated prices to Arab states, which effectively subsidizes the U.S. weapons industry and U.S. military grants to Israel." These are additional functions of Israel in the US-dominated Middle East system, and among the reasons why Israel is so favored by the state authorities, along with a wide range of US high-tech corporations, and of course military industry and intelligence.

Israel apart, the US is by far the world's major arms supplier. The recent New America Foundation report concludes that "U.S. arms and military training played a role in 20 of the world's 27 major wars in 2007," earning the US $23 billion in receipts, increasing to $32 billion in 2008. Small wonder that among the numerous UN resolutions that the US opposed in the December 2008 UN session was one calling for regulation of the arms trade. In 2006, the US was alone in voting against the treaty, but in November 2008 it was joined by a partner: Zimbabwe.

There were other notable votes at the December UN session. A resolution on "the right of the Palestinian people to self-determination" was adopted by 173 to 5 (US, Israel, Pacific island dependencies). The vote strongly reaffirms US-Israeli rejectionism, in international isolation. Similarly a resolution on "universal freedom of travel and the vital importance of family reunification" was adopted with US, Israel, and Pacific dependencies opposed, presumably with Palestinians in mind.

In voting against the right to development the US lost Israel but gained Ukraine. In voting against the "right to food," the US was alone, a particular striking fact in the face of the enormous global food crisis, dwarfing the financial crisis that threatens western economies.

There are good reasons why the voting record is consistently unreported and dispatched deep into the memory hole by the media and conformist intellectuals. It would not be wise to reveal to the public what the record implies about their elected representatives. In the present case it would plainly be unhelpful to let the public know that US-Israeli rejectionism, barring the peaceful settlement long advocated by the world, reaches such an extreme as to deny Palestinians even the abstract right to self-determination.

One of the heroic volunteers in Gaza, Norwegian doctor Mads Gilbert, described the scene of horror as an "All out war against the civilian population of Gaza." He estimated that half the casualties are women and children. The men are almost all civilians as well, by civilized standards. Gilbert reports that he had scarcely seen a military casualty among the 100s of bodies. The IDF concurs. Hamas "made a point of fighting at a distance -- or not at all," Ethan Bronner reports while "parsing the gains" of the US-Israeli assault. So Hamas's manpower remains intact, and it was mostly civilians who suffered pain: a positive outcome, according to widely-held doctrine.

These estimates were confirmed by UN humanitarian chief John Holmes, who informed reporters that it is "a fair presumption" that most of the civilians killed were women and children in a humanitarian crisis that is "worsening day by day as the violence continues." But we could be comforted by the words of Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni, the leading dove in the current electoral campaign, who assured the world that there is no "humanitarian crisis" in Gaza, thanks to Israeli benevolence.

Like others who care about human beings and their fate, Gilbert and Holmes pleaded for a ceasefire. But not yet. "At the United Nations, the United States prevented the Security Council from issuing a formal statement on Saturday night calling for an immediate ceasefire," the New York Times mentioned in passing. The official reason was that "there was no indication Hamas would abide by any agreement." In the annals of justifications for delighting in slaughter, this must rank among the most cynical. That of course was Bush and Rice, soon to be displaced by Obama who compassionately repeats that "if missiles were falling where my two daughters sleep, I would do everything in order to stop that." He is referring to Israeli children, not the many hundreds being torn to shreds in Gaza by US arms. Beyond that Obama maintained his silence.

A few days later, under intense international pressure, the US backed a Security Council resolution calling for a "durable ceasefire." It passed 14-0, US abstaining. Israel and US hawks were angered that the US did not veto it, as usual. The abstention, however, sufficed to give Israel if not a green at least a yellow light to escalate the violence, as it did right up to virtually the moment of the inauguration, as had been predicted.

As the ceasefire (theoretically) went into effect on January18, the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights released its figures for the final day of the assault: 54 Palestinians killed including 43 unarmed civilians, 17 of them children, while the IDF continued to bombard civilian homes and UN schools. The death toll, they estimated, mounted to 1,184, including 844 civilians, 281 of them children. The IDF continued to use incendiary bombs across the Gaza Strip, and to destroy houses and agricultural land, forcing civilians to flee their homes. A few hours later, Reuters reported more than 1,300 killed. The staff of the Al Mezan Center, which also carefully monitors casualties and destruction, visited areas that had previously been inaccessible because of incessant heavy bombardment. They discovered dozens of civilian corpses decomposing under the rubble of destroyed houses or removed by Israeli bulldozers. Entire urban blocks had disappeared.

The figures for killed and wounded are surely an underestimate. And it is unlikely that there will be any inquiry into these atrocities. Crimes of official enemies are subjected to rigorous investigation, but our own are systematically ignored. General practice, again, and understandable on the part of the masters.

The Security Council Resolution called for stopping the flow of arms into Gaza. The US and Israel (Rice-Livni) soon reached an agreement on measures to ensure this result, concentrating on Iranian arms. There is no need to stop smuggling of US arms into Israel, because there is no smuggling: the huge flow of arms is quite public, even when not reported, as in the case of the arms shipment announced as the slaughter in Gaza was proceeding.

The Resolution also called for "ensur[ing] the sustained re-opening of the crossing points on the basis of the 2005 Agreement on Movement and Access between the Palestinian Authority and Israel"; that Agreement determined that crossings to Gaza would be operated on a continuous basis and that Israel would also allow the crossing of goods and people between the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.

The Rice-Livni agreement had nothing to say about this aspect of the Security Council Resolution. The US and Israel had in fact already abandoned the 2005 Agreement as part of their punishment of Palestinians for voting the wrong way in a free election in January 2006. Rice's press conference after the Rice-Livni agreement emphasized Washington's continuing efforts to undermine the results of the one free election in the Arab world: "There is much that can be done," she said, "to bring Gaza out of the dark of Hamas's reign and into the light of the very good governance the Palestinian Authority can bring" - at least, can bring as long as it remains a loyal client, rife with corruption and willing to carry out harsh repression, but obedient.

Returning from a visit to the Arab world, Fawwaz Gerges strongly affirmed what others on the scene have reported. The effect of the US-Israeli offensive in Gaza has been to infuriate the populations and to arouse bitter hatred of the aggressors and their collaborators. "Suffice it to say that the so-called moderate Arab states [that is, those that take their orders from Washington] are on the defensive, and that the resistance front led by Iran and Syria is the main beneficiary. Once again, Israel and the Bush administration have handed the Iranian leadership a sweet victory." Furthermore, "Hamas will likely emerge as a more powerful political force than before and will likely top Fatah, the ruling apparatus of President Mahmoud Abbas's Palestinian Authority," Rice's favorites.

It is worth bearing in mind that the Arab world is not scrupulously protected from the only regular live TV coverage of what is happening in Gaza, namely the "calm and balanced analysis of the chaos and destruction" provided by the outstanding correspondents of al-Jazeera, offering "a stark alternative to terrestrial channels," as reported by the London Financial Times. In the 105 countries lacking our efficient modalities of self-censorship, people can see what is happening hourly, and the impact is said to be very great. In the US, the New York Times reports, "the near-total no doubt related to the sharp criticism Al Jazeera received from the United States government during the initial stages of the war in Iraq for its coverage of the American invasion." Cheney and Rumsfeld objected, so, obviously, the independent media could only obey.

There is much sober debate about what the attackers hoped to achieve. Some of objectives are commonly discussed, among them, restoring what is called "the deterrent capacity" that Israel lost as a result of its failures in Lebanon in 2006 - that is, the capacity to terrorize any potential opponent into submission. There are, however, more fundamental objectives that tend be ignored, though they too seem fairly obvious when we take a look at recent history.

Israel abandoned Gaza in September 2005. Rational Israeli hardliners, like Ariel Sharon, the patron saint of the settlers movement, understood that it was senseless to subsidize a few thousand illegal Israeli settlers in the ruins of Gaza, protected by the IDF while they used much of the land and scarce resources. It made more sense to turn Gaza into the world's largest prison and to transfer settlers to the West Bank, much more valuable territory, where Israel is quite explicit about its intentions, in word and more importantly in deed. One goal is to annex the arable land, water supplies, and pleasant suburbs of Jerusalem and Tel Aviv that lie within the separation wall, irrelevantly declared illegal by the World Court. That includes a vastly expanded Jerusalem, in violation of Security Council orders that go back 40 years, also irrelevant. Israel has also been taking over the Jordan Valley, about one-third of the West Bank. What remains is therefore imprisoned, and, furthermore, broken into fragments by salients of Jewish settlement that trisect the territory: one to the east of Greater Jerusalem through the town of Ma'aleh Adumim, developed through the Clinton years to split the West Bank; and two to the north, through the towns of Ariel and Kedumim. What remains to Palestinians is segregated by hundreds of mostly arbitrary checkpoints.

The checkpoints have no relation to security of Israel, and if some are intended to safeguard settlers, they are flatly illegal, as the World Court ruled. In reality, their major goal is harass the Palestinian population and to fortify what Israeli peace activist Jeff Halper calls the "matrix of control," designed to make life unbearable for the "two-legged beasts" who will be like "drugged roaches scurrying around in a bottle" if they seek to remain in their homes and land. All of that is fair enough, because they are "like grasshoppers compared to us" so that their heads can be "smashed against the boulders and walls." The terminology is from the highest Israeli political and military leaders, in this case the revered "princes." And the attitudes shape policies.

The ravings of the political and military leaders are mild as compared to the preaching of rabbinical authorities. They are not marginal figures. On the contrary, they are highly influential in the army and in the settler movement, who Zertal and Eldar reveal to be "lords of the land," with enormous impact on policy. Soldiers fighting in northern Gaza were afforded an "inspirational" visit from two leading rabbis, who explained to them that there are no "innocents" in Gaza, so everyone there is a legitimate target, quoting a famous passage from Psalms calling on the Lord to seize the infants of Israel's oppressors and dash them against the rocks. The rabbis were breaking no new ground. A year earlier, the former chief Sephardic rabbi wrote to Prime Minister Olmert, informing him that all civilians in Gaza are collectively guilty for rocket attacks, so that there is "absolutely no moral prohibition against the indiscriminate killing of civilians during a potential massive military offensive on Gaza aimed at stopping the rocket launchings," as the Jerusalem Post reported his ruling. His son, chief rabbi of Safed, elaborated: "If they don't stop after we kill 100, then we must kill a thousand, and if they do not stop after 1,000 then we must kill 10,000. If they still don't stop we must kill 100,000, even a million. Whatever it takes to make them stop."

Similar views are expressed by prominent American secular figures. When Israel invaded Lebanon in 2006, Harvard Law School Professor Alan Dershowitz explained in the liberal online journal Huffington Post that all Lebanese are legitimate targets of Israeli violence. Lebanon's citizens are "paying the price" for supporting "terrorism" - that is, for supporting resistance to Israel's invasion. Accordingly, Lebanese civilians are no more immune to attack than Austrians who supported the Nazis. The fatwa of the Sephardic rabbi applies to them. In a video on the Jerusalem Post website, Dershowitz went on to ridicule talk of excessive kill ratios of Palestinians to Israelis: it should be increased to 1000-to-one, he said, or even 1000-to-zero, meaning the brutes should be completely exterminated. Of course, he is referring to "terrorists," a broad category that includes the victims of Israeli power, since "Israel never targets civilians," he emphatically declared. It follows that Palestinians, Lebanese, Tunisians, in fact anyone who gets in the way of the ruthless armies of the Holy State is a terrorist, or an accidental victim of their just crimes.

It is not easy to find historical counterparts to these performances. It is perhaps of some interest that they are considered entirely appropriate in the reigning intellectual and moral culture - when they are produced on "our side," that is; from the mouths of official enemies such words would elicit righteous outrage and calls for massive preemptive violence in revenge.

The claim that "our side" never targets civilians is familiar doctrine among those who monopolize the means of violence. And there is some truth to it. We do not generally try to kill particular civilians. Rather, we carry out murderous actions that we know will slaughter many civilians, but without specific intent to kill particular ones. In law, the routine practices might fall under the category of depraved indifference, but that is not an adequate designation for standard imperial practice and doctrine. It is more similar to walking down a street knowing that we might kill ants, but without intent to do so, because they rank so low that it just doesn't matter. The same is true when Israel carries out actions that it knows will kill the "grasshoppers" and "two-legged beasts" who happen to infest the lands it "liberates." There is no good term for this form of moral depravity, arguably worse than deliberate murder, and all too familiar.

In the former Palestine, the rightful owners (by divine decree, according to the "lords of the land") may decide to grant the drugged roaches a few scattered parcels. Not by right, however: "I believed, and to this day still believe, in our people's eternal and historic right to this entire land," Prime Minister Olmert informed a joint session of Congress in May 2006 to rousing applause. At the same time he announced his "convergence" program for taking over what is valuable in the West Bank, leaving the Palestinians to rot in isolated cantons. He was not specific about the borders of the "entire land," but then, the Zionist enterprise never has been, for good reasons: permanent expansion is a very important internal dynamic. If Olmert is still faithful to his origins in Likud, he may have meant both sides of the Jordan, including the current state of Jordan, at least valuable parts of it.

Our people's "eternal and historic right to this entire land" contrasts dramatically with the lack of any right of self-determination for the temporary inhabitants, the Palestinians. As noted earlier, the latter stand was reiterated by Israel and its patron in Washington in December 2008, in their usual isolation and accompanied by resounding silence.

The plans that Olmert sketched in 2006 have since been abandoned as not sufficiently extreme. But what replaces the convergence program, and the actions that proceed daily to implement it, are approximately the same in general conception. They trace back to the earliest days of the occupation, when Defense Minister Moshe Dayan explained poetically that "the situation today resembles the complex relationship between a Bedouin man and the girl he kidnaps against his will...You Palestinians, as a nation, don't want us today, but we'll change your attitude by forcing our presence on you." You will "live like dogs, and whoever will leave, will leave," while we take what we want.

That these programs are criminal has never been in doubt. Immediately after the 1967 war, the Israeli government was informed by its highest legal authority, Teodor Meron, that "civilian settlement in the administered territories contravenes the explicit provisions of the Fourth Geneva Convention," the foundation of international humanitarian law. Israel's Justice Minister concurred. The World Court unanimously endorsed the essential conclusion in 2004, and the Israeli High Court technically agreed while disagreeing in practice, in its usual style.

In the West Bank, Israel can pursue its criminal programs with US support and no disturbance, thanks to its effective military control and by now the cooperation of the collaborationist Palestinian security forces armed and trained by the US and allied dictatorships. It can also carry out regular assassinations and other crimes, while settlers rampage under IDF protection. But while the West Bank has been effectively subdued by terror, there is still resistance in the other half of Palestine, the Gaza Strip. That too must be quelled for the US-Israeli programs of annexation and destruction of Palestine to proceed undisturbed.

Hence the invasion of Gaza.

The timing of the invasion was presumably influenced by the coming Israeli election. Ehud Barak, who was lagging badly in the polls, gained one parliamentary seat for every 40 Arabs killed in the early days of the slaughter, Israeli commentator Ran HaCohen calculated.

That may change, however. As the crimes passed beyond what the carefully honed Israeli propaganda campaign was able to suppress, even confirmed Israeli hawks became concerned that the carnage is "Destroying [Israel's] soul and its image. Destroying it on world television screens, in the living rooms of the international community and most importantly, in Obama's America" (Ari Shavit). Shavit was particularly concerned about Israel's "shelling a United Nations facility...on the day when the UN secretary general is visiting Jerusalem," an act that is "beyond lunacy," he felt.

Adding a few details, the "facility" was the UN compound in Gaza City, which contained the UNRWA warehouse. The shelling destroyed "hundreds of tons of emergency food and medicines set for distribution today to shelters, hospitals and feeding centres," according to UNRWA director John Ging. Military strikes at the same time destroyed two floors of the al-Quds hospital, setting it ablaze, and also a second warehouse run by the Palestinian Red Crescent society. The hospital in the densely-populated Tal-Hawa neighbourhood was destroyed by Israeli tanks "after hundreds of frightened Gazans had taken shelter inside as Israeli ground forces pushed into the neighbourhood," AP reported.

There was nothing left to salvage inside the smoldering ruins of the hospital. "They shelled the building, the hospital building. It caught fire. We tried to evacuate the sick people and the injured and the people who were there. Firefighters arrived and put out the fire, which burst into flames again and they put it out again and it came back for the third time," paramedic Ahmad Al-Haz told AP. It was suspected that the blaze might have been set by white phosphorous, also suspected in numerous other fires and serious burn injuries.

The suspicions were confirmed by Amnesty International after the cessation of the intense bombardment made inquiry possible. Before, Israel had sensibly barred all journalists, even Israeli, while its crimes were proceeding in full fury. Israel's use of white phosphorus against Gaza civilians is "clear and undeniable," AI reported. Its repeated use in densely populated civilian areas "is a war crime," AI concluded. They found white phosphorus edges scattered around residential buildings, still burning, "further endangering the residents and their property," particularly children "drawn to the detritus of war and often unaware of the danger." Primary targets, they report, were the UNRWA compound, where the Israeli "white phosphorus landed next to some fuel trucks and caused a large fire which destroyed tons of humanitarian aid" after Israeli authorities "had given assurance that no further strikes would be launched on the compound." On the same day, "a white phosphorus shell landed in the al-Quds hospital in Gaza City also causing a fire which forced hospital staff to evacuate the patients... White phosphorus landing on skin can burn deep through muscle and into the bone, continuing to burn unless deprived of oxygen." Purposely intended or beyond depraved indifference, such crimes are inevitable when this weapon is used in attacks on civilians.

It is, however, a mistake to concentrate too much on Israel's gross violations of jus in bello, the laws designed to bar practices that are too savage. The invasion itself is a far more serious crime. And if Israel had inflicted the horrendous damage by bows and arrows, it would still be a criminal act of extreme depravity.

Aggression always has a pretext: in this case, that Israel's patience had "run out" in the face of Hamas rocket attacks, as Barak put it. The mantra that is endlessly repeated is that Israel has the right to use force to defend itself. The thesis is partially defensible. The rocketing is criminal, and it is true that a state has the right to defend itself against criminal attacks. But it does not follow that it has a right to defend itself by force. That goes far beyond any principle that we would or should accept. Nazi Germany had no right to use force to defend itself against the terrorism of the partisans. Kristallnacht is not justified by Herschel Grynszpan's assassination of a German Embassy official in Paris. The British were not justified in using force to defend themselves against the (very real) terror of the American colonists seeking independence, or to terrorize Irish Catholics in response to IRA terror - and when they finally turned to the sensible policy of addressing legitimate grievances, the terror ended. It is not a matter of "proportionality," but of choice of action in the first place: Is there an alternative to violence?

Any resort to force carries a heavy burden of proof, and we have to ask whether it can be met in the case of Israel's effort to quell any resistance to its daily criminal actions in Gaza and in the West Bank, where they still continue relentlessly after more than 40 years. Perhaps I may quote myself in an interview in the Israeli press on Olmert's announced convergence plans for the West Bank: "The US and Israel do not tolerate any resistance to these plans, preferring to pretend - falsely of course - that `there is no partner,' as they proceed with programs that go back a long way. We may recall that Gaza and the West Bank are recognized to be a unit, so if resistance to the US-Israeli annexation-cantonization programs is legitimate in the West Bank, it is in Gaza too."

Palestinian-American journalist Ali Abunimah observed that "There are no rockets launched at Israel from the West Bank, and yet Israel's extrajudicial killings, land theft, settler pogroms and kidnappings never stopped for a day during the truce. The western-backed Palestinian Authority of Mahmoud Abbas has acceded to all Israel's demands. Under the proud eye of United States military advisors, Abbas has assembled `security forces' to fight the resistance on Israel's behalf. None of that has spared a single Palestinian in the West Bank from Israel's relentless colonization" - thanks to firm US backing. The respected Palestinian parliamentarian Dr. Mustapha Barghouti adds that after Bush's Annapolis extravaganza in November 2007, with much uplifting rhetoric about dedication to peace and justice, Israeli attacks on Palestinians escalated sharply, with an almost 50% increase in the West Bank, along with a sharp increase in settlements and Israeli check points. Obviously these criminal actions are not a response to rockets from Gaza, though the converse may well be the case, Barghouti plausibly suggests.

The reactions to crimes of an occupying power can be condemned as criminal and politically foolish, but those who offer no alternative have no moral grounds to issue such judgments. The conclusion holds with particular force for those in the US who choose to be directly implicated in Israel's ongoing crimes -- by their words, their actions, or their silence. All the more so because there are very clear non-violent alternatives - which, however, have the disadvantage that they bar the programs of illegal expansion.

Israel has a straightforward means to defend itself: put an end to its criminal actions in occupied territories, and accept the long-standing international consensus on a two-state settlement that has been blocked by the US and Israel for over 30 years, since the US first vetoed a Security Council resolution calling for a political settlement in these terms in 1976. I will not once again run through the inglorious record, but it is important to be aware that US-Israeli rejectionism today is even more blatant than in the past. The Arab League has gone even beyond the consensus, calling for full normalization of relations with Israel. Hamas has repeatedly called for a two-state settlement in terms of the international consensus. Iran and Hezbollah have made it clear that they will abide by any agreement that Palestinians accept. That leaves the US-Israel in splendid isolation, not only in words.

The more detailed record is informative. The Palestinian National Council formally accepted the international consensus in 1988. The response of the Shamir-Peres coalition government, affirmed by James Baker's State Department, was that there cannot be an "additional Palestinian state" between Israel and Jordan - the latter already a Palestinian state by US-Israeli dictate. The Oslo accords that followed put to the side potential Palestinian national rights, and the threat that they might be realized in some meaningful form was systematically undermined through the Oslo years by Israel's steady expansion of illegal settlements. Settlement accelerated in 2000, President Clinton's and Prime Minister Barak's last year, when negotiations took place at Camp David against that background.

After blaming Yassir Arafat for the breakdown of the Camp David negotiations, Clinton backtracked, and recognized that the US-Israeli proposals were too extremist to be acceptable to any Palestinian. In December 2000, he presented his "parameters," vague but more forthcoming. He then announced that both sides had accepted the parameters, while both expressed reservations. The two sides met in Taba Egypt in January 2001 and came very close to an agreement, and would have been able to do so in a few more days, they said in their final press conference. But the negotiations were cancelled prematurely by Ehud Barak. That week in Taba is the one break in over 30 years of US-Israeli rejectionism. There is no reason why that one break in the record cannot be resumed.

The preferred version, recently reiterated by Ethan Bronner, is that "Many abroad recall Mr. Barak as the prime minister who in 2000 went further than any Israeli leader in peace offers to the Palestinians, only to see the deal fail and explode in a violent Palestinian uprising that drove him from power." It's true that "many abroad" believe this deceitful fairy tale, thanks to what Bronner and too many of his colleagues call "journalism".

It is commonly claimed that a two-state solution is now unattainable because if the IDF tried to remove settlers, it would lead to a civil war. That may be true, but much more argument is needed. Without resorting to force to expel illegal settlers, the IDF could simply withdraw to whatever boundaries are established by negotiations. The settlers beyond those boundaries would have the choice of leaving their subsidized homes to return to Israel, or to remain under Palestinian authority. The same was true of the carefully staged "national trauma" in Gaza in 2005, so transparently fraudulent that it was ridiculed by Israeli commentators. It would have sufficed for Israel to announce that the IDF would withdraw, and the settlers who were subsidized to enjoy their life in Gaza would have quietly climbed into the lorries provided to them and travelled to their new subsidized residences in the West Bank. But that would not have produced tragic photos of agonized children and passionate calls of "never again."

To summarize, contrary to the claim that is constantly reiterated, Israel has no right to use force to defend itself against rockets from Gaza, even if they are regarded as terrorist crimes. Furthermore, the reasons are transparent. The pretext for launching the attack is without merit.

There is also a narrower question. Does Israel have peaceful short-term alternatives to the use of force in response to rockets from Gaza. One short-term alternative would be to accept a ceasefire. Sometimes Israel has done so, while instantly violating it. The most recent and currently relevant case is June 2008. The ceasefire called for opening the border crossings to "allow the transfer of all goods that were banned and restricted to go into Gaza." Israel formally agreed, but immediately announced that it would not abide by the agreement and open the borders until Hamas released Gilad Shalit, an Israeli soldier captured by Hamas in June 2006.

The steady drumbeat of accusations about the capture of Shalit is, again, blatant hypocrisy, even putting aside Israel's long history of kidnapping. In this case, the hypocrisy could not be more glaring. One day before Hamas captured Shalit, Israeli soldiers entered Gaza City and kidnapped two civilians, the Muammar brothers, bringing them to Israel to join the thousands of other prisoners held there, almost 1000 reportedly without charge. Kidnapping civilians is a far more serious crime than capturing a soldier of an attacking army, but it was barely reported in contrast to the furor over Shalit. And all that remains in memory, blocking peace, is the capture of Shalit, another reflection of the difference between humans and two-legged beasts. Shalit should be returned - in a fair prisoner exchange.

It was after the capture of Shalit that Israel's unrelenting military attack against Gaza passed from merely vicious to truly sadistic. But it is well to recall that even before his capture, Israel had fired more than 7,700 shells at northern Gaza after its September withdrawal, eliciting virtually no comment.

After rejecting the June 2008 ceasefire it had formally accepted, Israel maintained its siege. We may recall that a siege is an act of war. In fact, Israel has always insisted on an even stronger principle: hampering access to the outside world, even well short of a siege, is an act of war, justifying massive violence in response. Interference with Israel's passage through the Straits of Tiran was part of the pretext for Israel's invasion of Egypt (with France and England) in 1956, and for its launching of the June 1967 war. The siege of Gaza is total, not partial, apart from occasional willingness of the occupiers to relax it slightly. And it is vastly more harmful to Gazans than closing the Straits of Tiran was to Israel. Supporters of Israeli doctrines and actions should therefore have no problem justifying rocket attacks on Israeli territory from the Gaza Strip.

Of course, again we run into the nullifying principle: This is us, that is them.

Israel not only maintained the siege after June 2008, but did so with extreme rigor. It even prevented UNRWA from replenishing its stores, "so when the ceasefire broke down, we ran out of food for the 750,000 who depend on us," UNRWA director John Ging informed the BBC.

Despite the Israeli siege, rocketing sharply reduced. The ceasefire broke down on November 4 with an Israeli raid into Gaza, leading to the death of 6 Palestinians, and a retaliatory barrage of rockets (with no injuries). The pretext for the raid was that Israel had detected a tunnel in Gaza that might have been intended for use to capture another Israeli soldier. The pretext is transparently absurd, as a number of commentators have noted. If such a tunnel existed, and reached the border, Israel could easily have barred it right there. But as usual, the ludicrous Israeli pretext was deemed credible.

What was the reason for the Israeli raid? We have no internal evidence about Israeli planning, but we do know that the raid came shortly before scheduled Hamas-Fatah talks in Cairo aimed at "reconciling their differences and creating a single, unified government," British correspondent Rory McCarthy reported. That was to be the first Fatah-Hamas meeting since the June 2007 civil war that left Hamas in control of Gaza, and would have been a significant step towards advancing diplomatic efforts. There is a long history of Israel provocations to deter the threat of diplomacy, some already mentioned. This may have been another one.

The civil war that left Hamas in control of Gaza is commonly described as a Hamas military coup, demonstrating again their evil nature. The real world is a little different. The civil war was incited by the US and Israel, in a crude attempt at a military coup to overturn the free elections that brought Hamas to power. That has been public knowledge at least since April 2008, when David Rose published in Vanity Fair a detailed and documented account of how Bush, Rice, and Deputy National-Security Adviser Elliott Abrams "backed an armed force under Fatah strongman Muhammad Dahlan, touching off a bloody civil war in Gaza and leaving Hamas stronger than ever." The account was recently corroborated once again in the Christian Science Monitor (Jan. 12, 2009) by Norman Olsen, who served for 26 years in the Foreign Service, including four years working in the Gaza Strip and four years at the US Embassy in Tel Aviv, and then moved on to become associate coordinator for counterterrorism at the Department of State. Olson and his son detail the State Department shenanigans intended to ensure that their candidate, Abbas, would win in the January 2006 elections - in which case it would have been hailed as a triumph of democracy. After the election-fixing failed, they turned to punishment of the Palestinians and arming of a militia run by Fatah strong-man Muhammad Dahlan, but "Dahlan's thugs moved too soon" and a Hamas pre-emptive strike undermined the coup attempt, leading to far harsher US-Israeli measures to punish the disobedient people of Gaza. The Party Line is more acceptable.

After Israel broke the June 2008 ceasefire (such as it was) in November, the siege was tightened further, with even more disastrous consequences for the population. According to Sara Roy, the leading academic specialist on Gaza, "On Nov. 5, Israel sealed all crossing points into Gaza, vastly reducing and at times denying food supplies, medicines, fuel, cooking gas, and parts for water and sanitation systems..." During November, an average of 4.6 trucks of food per day entered Gaza from Israel compared with an average of 123 trucks per day in October. Spare parts for the repair and maintenance of water-related equipment have been denied entry for over a year. The World Health Organization just reported that half of Gaza's ambulances are now out of order" - and the rest soon became targets for Israeli attack. Gaza's only power station was forced to suspend operation for lack of fuel, and could not be started up again because they needed spare parts, which had been sitting in the Israeli port of Ashdod for 8 months. Shortage of electricity led to a 300% increase in burn cases at Shifaa' hospital in the Gaza Strip, resulting from efforts to light wood fires. Israel barred shipment of Chlorine, so that by mid-December in Gaza City and the north access to water was limited to six hours every three days. The human consequences are not counted among Palestinian victims of Israeli terror.

After the November 4 Israeli attack, both sides escalated violence (all deaths were Palestinian) until the ceasefire formally ended on Dec. 19, and Prime Minister Olmert authorized the full-scale invasion.

A few days earlier Hamas had proposed to return to the original July ceasefire agreement, which Israel had not observed. Historian and former Carter administration high official Robert Pastor passed the proposal to a "senior official" in the IDF, but Israel did not respond. The head of Shin Bet, Israel's internal security agency, was quoted in Israeli sources on December 21 as saying that Hamas is interested in continuing the "calm" with Israel, while its military wing is continuing preparations for conflict.

"There clearly was an alternative to the military approach to stopping the rockets," Pastor said, keeping to the narrow issue of Gaza. There was also a more far-reaching alternative, which is rarely discussed: namely, accepting a political settlement including all of the occupied territories.

Israel's senior diplomatic correspondent Akiva Eldar reports that shortly before Israel launched its full-scale invasion on Saturday Dec. 27, "Hamas politburo chief Khaled Meshal announced on the Iz al-Din al-Qassam Web site that he was prepared not only for a `cessation of aggression' - he proposed going back to the arrangement at the Rafah crossing as of 2005, before Hamas won the elections and later took over the region. That arrangement was for the crossing to be managed jointly by Egypt, the European Union, the Palestinian Authority presidency and Hamas," and as noted earlier, called for opening of the crossings to desperately needed supplies.

A standard claim of the more vulgar apologists for Israeli violence is that in the case of the current assault, "as in so many instances in the past half century - the Lebanon War of 1982, the `Iron Fist' response to the 1988 intifada, the Lebanon War of 2006 - the Israelis have reacted to intolerable acts of terror with a determination to inflict terrible pain, to teach the enemy a lesson" (New Yorker editor David Remnick). The 2006 invasion can be justified only on the grounds of appalling cynicism, as already discussed. The reference to the vicious response to the 1988 intifada is too depraved even to discuss; a sympathetic interpretation might be that it reflects astonishing ignorance. But Remnick's claim about the 1982 invasion is quite common, a remarkable feat of incessant propaganda, which merits a few reminders.

Uncontroversially, the Israel-Lebanon border was quiet for a year before the Israeli invasion, at least from Lebanon to Israel, north to south. Through the year, the PLO scrupulously observed a US-initiated ceasefire, despite constant Israeli provocations, including bombing with many civilian casualties, presumably intended to elicit some reaction that could be used to justify Israel's carefully planned invasion. The best Israel could achieve was two light symbolic responses. It then invaded with a pretext too absurd to be taken seriously.

The invasion had precisely nothing to do with "intolerable acts of terror," though it did have to do with intolerable acts: of diplomacy. That has never been obscure. Shortly after the US-backed invasion began, Israel's leading academic specialist on the Palestinians, Yehoshua Porath - no dove -- wrote that Arafat's success in maintaining the ceasefire constituted "a veritable catastrophe in the eyes of the Israeli government," since it opened the way to a political settlement. The government hoped that the PLO would resort to terrorism, undermining the threat that it would be "a legitimate negotiating partner for future political accommodations."

The facts were well-understood in Israel, and not concealed. Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir stated that Israel went to war because there was "a terrible danger... Not so much a military one as a political one," prompting the fine Israeli satirist B. Michael to write that "the lame excuse of a military danger or a danger to the Galilee is dead." We "have removed the political danger" by striking first, in time; now, "Thank God, there is no one to talk to." Historian Benny Morris recognized that the PLO had observed the ceasefire, and explained that "the war's inevitability rested on the PLO as a political threat to Israel and to Israel's hold on the occupied territories." Others have frankly acknowledged the unchallenged facts.

In a front-page think-piece on the latest Gaza invasion, NYT correspondent Steven Lee Meyers writes that "In some ways, the Gaza attacks were reminiscent of the gamble Israel took, and largely lost, in Lebanon in 1982 [when] it invaded to eliminate the threat of Yasir Arafat's forces." Correct, but not in the sense he has in mind. In 1982, as in 2008, it was necessary to eliminate the threat of political settlement.

The hope of Israeli propagandists has been that Western intellectuals and media would buy the tale that Israel reacted to rockets raining on the Galilee, "intolerable acts of terror." And they have not been disappointed.

It is not that Israel does not want peace: everyone wants peace, even Hitler. The question is: on what terms? From its origins, the Zionist movement has understood that to achieve its goals, the best strategy would be to delay political settlement, meanwhile slowly building facts on the ground. Even the occasional agreements, as in 1947, were recognized by the leadership to be temporary steps towards further expansion. The 1982 Lebanon war was a dramatic example of the desperate fear of diplomacy. It was followed by Israeli support for Hamas so as to undermine the secular PLO and its irritating peace initiatives. Another case that should be familiar is Israeli provocations before the 1967 war designed to elicit a Syrian response that could be used as a pretext for violence and takeover of more land - at least 80% of the incidents, according to Defense Minister Moshe Dayan.

The story goes far back. The official history of the Haganah, the pre-state Jewish military force, describes the assassination of the religious Jewish poet Jacob de Haan in 1924, accused of conspiring with the traditional Jewish community (the Old Yishuv) and the Arab Higher Committee against the new immigrants and their settlement enterprise. And there have been numerous examples since.

The effort to delay political accommodation has always made perfect sense, as do the accompanying lies about how "there is no partner for peace." It is hard to think of another way to take over land where you are not wanted.

Similar reasons underlie Israel's preference for expansion over security. Its violation of the ceasefire on November 4 2009 is one of many recent examples.

An Amnesty International chronology reports that the June 2008 ceasefire had "brought enormous improvements in the quality of life in Sderot and other Israeli villages near Gaza, where before the ceasefire residents lived in fear of the next Palestinian rocket strike. However, nearby in the Gaza Strip the Israeli blockade remains in place and the population has so far seen few dividends from the ceasefire." But the gains in security for Israel towns near Gaza were evidently outweighed by the felt need to deter diplomatic moves that might impede West Bank expansion, and to crush any remaining resistance within Palestine.

The preference for expansion over security has been particularly evident since Israel's fateful decision in 1971, backed by Henry Kissinger, to reject the offer of a full peace treaty by President Sadat of Egypt, offering nothing to the Palestinians - an agreement that the US and Israel were compelled to accept at Camp David eight years later, after a major war that was a near disaster for Israel. A peace treaty with Egypt would have ended any significant security threat, but there was an unacceptable quid pro quo: Israel would have had to abandon its extensive settlement programs in the northeastern Sinai. Security was a lower priority than expansion, as it still is. Substantial evidence for this basic conclusion is provided in a magisterial study of Israel's security and foreign policy by Zeev Maoz, Defending the Holy Land.

Today, Israel could have security, normalization of relations, and integration into the region. But it very clearly prefers illegal expansion, conflict, and repeated exercise of violence, actions that are not only criminal, murderous and destructive but are also eroding its own long-term security. US military and Middle East specialist Andrew Cordesman writes that while Israel military force can surely crush defenseless Gaza, "neither Israel nor the US can gain from a war that produces [a bitter] reaction from one of the wisest and most moderate voices in the Arab world, Prince Turki al-Faisal of Saudi Arabia, who said on January 6 that `The Bush administration has left [Obama] a disgusting legacy and a reckless position towards the massacres and bloodshed of innocents in Gaza...Enough is enough, today we are all Palestinians and we seek martyrdom for God and for Palestine, following those who died in Gaza'."

One of the wisest voices in Israel, Uri Avnery, writes that after an Israeli military victory, "What will be seared into the consciousness of the world will be the image of Israel as a blood-stained monster, ready at any moment to commit war crimes and not prepared to abide by any moral restraints. This will have severe consequences for our long-term future, our standing in the world, our chance of achieving peace and quiet. In the end, this war is a crime against ourselves too, a crime against the State of Israel."

There is good reason to believe that he is right. Israel is deliberately turning itself into perhaps the most hated country in the world, and is also losing the allegiance of the population of the West, including younger American Jews, who are unlikely to tolerate its persistent shocking crimes for long. Decades ago, I wrote that those who call themselves "supporters of Israel" are in reality supporters of its moral degeneration and probable ultimate destruction. Regrettably, that judgment looks more and more plausible.

Meanwhile we are quietly observing a rare event in history, what the late Israeli sociologist Baruch Kimmerling called "politicide," the murder of a nation -- at the hands of the most evil nexus CIA/MOSSAD and the PNAC killers.

SPIEGEL: Mr. Pimp, we thank you for this interview.



Arithmetics of Disdain,

At a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act"

It is noteworthy that the State Department's list of global terrorist incidents for 2002 worldwide failed to list the car bombing attack on Hobeika and his party.... But Listed a small Hand Grenade thrown at a U.S. franchise in the middle of the night when the place was closed, empty and no one was hurt? The White House wanted to ensure the terror attack on Mr. Elie Hobeika, and his party of three young men with families, was censored from the report. The reason was simple: this attack ultimately had Washington's and Israel's fingerprints all over it....Given the actual climate of political cacophonies, deceit, deception and intrigue in Lebanon of today, Lebanon of the LIARS of NEOCONVILLE, it has been proven beyond a shadow of a doubt, that Mr. Elie Hobeika was a visionary Leader and a Hero.Lebanon will probably never know a Leader of this caliber.My dear friend ELIE, you have been reborn on January 24th 2002.Heroes are reborn the day of their Martyrdom .ELIE, you are more alive today, than many living political corpses,walking and talking in Beirut Lebanon every day, until resurrection.At a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act"- G. Orwell A U.S. intelligence source revealed to me, that in the world of intelligence "carve out" subcontracts such confusion is often the case with "plausible deniability" being a foremost concern in ALL covert operations, especially in Elie Hobeika's case on January 24th 2002, & Hariri's Feb. 14th 2005... Notwithstanding Jacques CHIRAC's gesticulations and false sorrow for the loss of his "friend" Rafic HARIRI, he has been regularly organizing official meetings in Paris for Asef Shawkat with his services to secure SYRIA for and with Assef Shawkat,....

The propensity of governments to create secrets out of the obvious is one of the more tedious aspects of international relations. But this secret is not obvious, and it is not trivial. Though it is true, and I hold the KEY.

Fabrications, LIES , False Flag operations, CIA and MOSSAD.It has been proven beyond a shadow of a doubt,that ALL stories which came out immediately after the Assassination of Mr.Elie Hobeika, Fares Sweidan,Dimitri Ajram, and Waleed El-Zein, were completely &utterly FALSE. It was a pure fabrication by the KILLERS;AND the CIA'S Foreign Denial and Deception Committee (FDDC),to cover their tracks. Standard operating procedure...101I mean by that, the stories relating to Elie trying to find IMAD Moughnieh, the alleged attempted contacts with CIA, MOSSAD, etc. , the missing Iranian diplomats, the 9 most wanted by CIA, whose names have been circulated then,on purpose by CIA, to 7 ministers in the Lebanese Government, etc. [names which CIA has completely forgotten now,one of them has proven since to be a CIA asset himself...] ALL these were a tortuous web of lies to cover the tracks of the Murderers of CIA, MOSSAD, and their Syro-Lebanese tools.Special ongoing Investigation.Oct. , 2007- On September 15, 2001, just four days after the 9-11 attacks,CIA Director George Tenet provided President [sic] Bush with a Top Secret"Worldwide Attack Matrix"-a virtual license to kill targets deemed to be a threat to the United States in some 80 countries around the world. The Tenet plan, which was subsequently approved by Bush, essentially reversed the executive orders of four previous U.S. administrations that expressly prohibited political assassinations. Mr. Elie Hobeika will be the first target of the US administration, to pave the way for its Iraq Invasion .It planned to directly control the "Energy Basin" and ALL the OIL Transportation routes,from Pipelines to the Maritime avenues and choke points in the Gulf areas, and from central Asia to Mauritania and beyond.But most of all, Mr. Elie Hobeika will be made to pay dearly with his life,for daring to change his politics and views, after experiencing first hand,THE BRUTALITY OF THE ISRAELIS AND THE AMERICANS ,and their CULTURE OF VIOLENCE , Intrigue, murder & very bad Politics.The BUSH+CHENEY Energy MATRIX, coming to a place near you SOON.The awakening is near. It will be like a hurricane passing with untold fury.Mark my Words: .....

THE assassination of yet another Lebanese MP — the seventh anti-Syrian figure to be murdered since the slaying of former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri in February 2005 — has brought Lebanon to the brink of a catastrophe. It threatens to be even more devastating than the 1975-90 civil war. The country’s survival as an independent unified state is now at stake. The divide between anti-Syrian and pro-Syrian blocs is now unbridgeable.

As to fears of fresh civil war, it is already a reality. With ministers and pro-government MPs being assassinated, the government even more besieged than the one in Iraq, surviving MPs in hiding, who can talk of political normality? Lebanon is at war with itself. How long before that translates into general armed conflict is anyone’s guess. It would be naive to imagine that Ghanem’s killing will be the last. The anti-Syrian majority in Parliament is now razor-thin. Those behind this and the other killings are obviously determined to bring down the government of Prime Minister Fouad Siniora by the physical elimination of its parliamentary majority.

There can be no doubt that more assassinations are planned and will be attempted. If that happens and the Lebanese government falls as a result and is replaced by a pro-Syrian government, it will trigger a wave of retaliatory violence — against Hezbollah, against the Shiite community and against pro-Syrian figures. Open warfare waits in the wings.

Syrian protestations that it had nothing to do with Antoine Ghanem’s murder and the others may be true. It is quite possible that the killings are wholly internal, the work of pro-Syrian elements inside Lebanon who want power back. There are certainly some who do not want a new president elected to replace Emile Lahoud. It is even possible that Israelis were behind the killings, intent on destabilization and making Syria appear the villain — possible but unlikely; they have much to lose if a Hezbollah-dominated, pro-Syrian government were installed in Beirut.

The problem is that very few believe Syria’s innocence. They ask the question “who benefits?” and, in the case of each assassination, come up with the same answer: Damascus and its clients in Lebanon. That belief robs Syria of having an acceptable role in Lebanon for a long time to come. The majority of Lebanese want their sovereignty to be absolute; with no interference from anyone — be they Syrian, Israeli, Iranian, American or whatever. That dream, however, is being car-bombed to oblivion....

Forget what you've heard about objectivity. Not even cameras are objective. To nearly everything you analyze (and report on) you bring notions based on - but not limited to - your class, gender, skin color, ethnicity, native language, upbringing, education, religion, culture, playground experiences, political orientation, the influences of people you trust and things about the way our brains work that nobody even knows yet. Like sponges, we absorb stereotypes and clichés about other people's attitudes and behavior which skews our perceptions in ways we don't even realize. So don't fool yourself into believing in objectivity. The best you can achieve is fairness, and that's a tough path to stick to as well.

And then we'd have a talk about the textbook description of objectivity, which is that "every story has two sides," a pernicious dualistic myth that profoundly undermines what is supposed to be a search for truth....

The even greater danger with these dark clouds forming over Lebanon is for the region. With Syria’s links to Iran, Iran’s links to Hezbollah, rising tension over Iran’s alleged nuclear ambitions, there is a chain explosion waiting to happen. An Israeli attack on Iran’s nuclear facilities, an American attack on Iran, a Syrian attack on Israel, more Lebanese assassinations: One could trigger another. The temperature is fast rising on the Middle East’s northern rim — and it is near flash point.


Petition USA

Dear Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, , thanks for your
great work defending the USA Constitution, with
between Churches and State and Free Speech,
and my questions are:1) since most likely the Senate

will approve Michael Mukasey as the new A.G.of

the United States, and since as you know,he is an

orthodox Israeli-American and with dual citizenship,
American and Israeli, , NYT Sept.
18.07 "Washington outsider with many sides"
for info on Mukasey as Judge of the WTC-
Insurance 9/11 case , will he respect other
religions exactly thesame as his?2) since he is an

ordained rabbi within his orthodox community,will his partners get treatment better or different in any way
from the one you or I or anybody else would get from

him in the United States of America?

3) what happens to all the Security Contracts
and Military deals he and his son Marc are
doing with the Companies and Interests of
Giuliani Partners and other associates ?

4) what happens with all the deals they
worked on in his son's law firm,
Bracewell&Giuliani?since Bracewell&Giuliani has

offices in the South Asia, like in Kazakhstan,a big

oil supplier ruled by an extreme undemocratic leader,
Nazarbayev, will the Mukasey's and Giuliani's
get special deals? with no supervision? political
donations? will the actual law firm of Mukasey
get special deals too? will anybody ask ? or will
they just say yes :blindly?

5) Michael Mukasey

and his son Marc are strong AIPAC supporters ,

but will anyone in the Senate ask anything about their relationship to these political-military-religious-financial
and foreign groups? we know that no one
will,but is that right? isn't special treatment?
the A.G.?

6) Chairman,this powerful military-religious-
financial group , of which Michael Mukasey is
a leader, will have unprecedented influence in
the Justice Dpt. ,White House and Congress,
not to mention over the average taxpayer,
and since many members of the orthodox
community to which he belongs are diamond,
gold,jewelry,insurance ,real estate and tobacco
dealers and wholesalers while claiming Tax
Exemption due to religious condition,will his
appointment stop all the Investigations of the
IRS and Justice well as Commerce,etc.?
and back taxes?
do average Americans have a guarantee of
equal treatment?
when we start getting prosecuted for asking
questions,what recourse do we have ? any ?
and since orthodox Mukasey will most likely
install many members of his organized religious
group into office,will we be forced to request
help from the same community like his with
the special privilege?7) Judge Mukasey was in

charge of the 9/11/01 Trial case between the

leaseholders of the WTC,SIlverstein-Goldman-

Pacific-etc., and the 23 Insurance Companies these

new leaseholders called just days before 9/11 to
open dozens of policies over everything in
the Towers, services,leases,businesses,contracts,
profits,hardware,you name it,their premiums
were millions of dollars a week, didn't make
any business sense,unless they knew what was
going to happen a few days later ,and
everybody in N.Y. and around the world
was waiting for answers from the Trial ,
and then Judge Mukasey put a lid on the
Trial and no news came out, NOTHING !!!!
and everybody asked why ?, if it is a patriotic
case,why no news at all ?why the secrecy ?
why Judge Mukesay didn't want anybody in
America to know everything about Silverstein
and his dozens of policies? , then we also found
out that then N.Y.State A.G. Eliot Spitzer
wrote a Friend of the Court brief supporting
Silverstein,the AG siding with one of the
parties!, and the Judge and Spitzer started to
push the Insurance Companies to settle for 2
events,a total of 7 billion dollars to Silverstein
and his partners, many of the Insurance
Companies refused because they knew
something was not right and eventually they
settled on 4.6 billion dollars for Silverstein ,
but we still never got any details in any
newspaper ,radio or TV,NOTHING ! I WOULD
but we do know that no one will ask him
anything in D.C., he and his Orthodox
Congregation partners rule,after all they all
go to Israel together and share Religious
Ceremonies with Kissinger, Chertoff,
Bloomberg ,Silverstein,etc., and yet we hear
S. Schumer and other neocons saying to the
media that they want to learn more from
the man !8) Chairman,this new A.G. will have
unprecedented influence over President Bush
and VP Cheney,since he is the only one that
can prosecute the 2,is it wise to have a
member of a foreign religious-political group
having so much power over the President and
the Vice-President of the United States of
America ? safe ? smart? patriotic?We know that MR..Mukasey was selected by
Joshua Bolten and approved by Senator
Schumer and others,so since "they" run
Washington,it's a done deal ,hearing Senator
Schumer telling the Media how wonderful
Mukasey is and that his nomination cuts
down on pressure on the White House, do
they extorted a deal from the President:
Our orthodox candidate and we stop asking
for White House U.S. Attorney papers and
information?is that why Bush looks so depressed?

is that how Schumer,Bolton, Emanuel,Specter,
Lieberman and Bloomberg are going to run
this country?
because clearly with Mukasey as A.G.,they
run this country lock,stock and barrel,it's
that how our Constitutional Rights end ?
Extortion of the President of the United
hearing Schumer and Specter, it's clear that it
was all about getting the Christians out of the
Justice Dpt. and installing the neocon orthodox
in, is that how they do it ?A partner of Mukasey

as adviser to Giuliani , the neocon Pedhoretz,

has repeatedly pushed with Pr.Bush to bomb Iran,

to attack, and since Sen. Lieberman and Sen. Kyl

are pushing to brand Iran's Military a terrorist

Organization, is this the beginning of a concerted

effort to push for war? it's important to remember
all this , because in 2002 and 2003 all these
neocons with Sen.Schumer,S.Coleman,
Sen.Boxer,R.Emanuel,Kristol,Safire, Wolfowitz,
Whitman, Kaplan,Kellner,Gutman,Berman,
Sulzberger,Murdoch,Karmazin, ex-sec.Cohen,
were pushing for war every day on the media
and yet now they are attacking anyone that
mentions it, they are warning elected officials
like R.Moran that to mention these facts is
anti-this and anti-that and "watch it ", they
are bullying any one that mentions what happen
before the USA went to Iraq,and worst: they
insist now on their media that only Bush-
Cheney-Rice-Rumsfeld are responsible , that
no one else pushed for this war:

it looks like its not the first time, it sounds
like they always pull the same trick: they push
for war,financed with their Hedge Funds and
then with the media they erase any links to
themselves, this is criminal; to push for war
and then to hide and blamethe Christians
only,that's evil and SHOWS LOTS OF
COUNTRY! to confirm an organized
religious-political-military from a foreign sect
and laws to Attorney General is
un-Constitutional,illegal, un-American and
goes against the core of the USA values,
thousands died to defend the USA
Constitution from foreign religions, how can
the Senate now approve a religious leader ?
will they even ask this question? will they
commit High Treason ?when you look at these

incompetent and criminal decisions against the

Rule of Law and the Declaration of Independence,
how can Taxpayers petition the Government
for any rights?Thanks for your great work defending
America from foreign and domestic enemies,
in my humble opinion, this situation
looks to me like occupation and foreign control,
and to you ?America knows that George Washington,

Lincoln and all the Founding Fathers would be proud of
your defense of the USA Constitution against
High Treason and High Crimes,


US Citizens


NO COMMENT ....... "For Now..."

Saakashvili Ordered me to Get Rid of Patarkatsishvili’ – Okruashvili

Ex-Defense Minister Irakli Okruashvili has made yet another startling allegation against his former ally, President Saakashvili. The president, he said, had personally ordered him to liquidate Badri Patarkatsishvili, a business tycoon.
Speaking live on Imedi TV’s talk show On the Air late on September 25, Okruashvili said: “Saakashvili told me that we should get rid of him [Patarkatsishvili], in the same way as happened to Rafik Hariri, the former Lebanese prime minister, who was killed in a car bomb attack.”
“In July 2005,” Okruashvili said, “Saakashvili asked me: what did I think about getting rid of one person… - Badri Patarkatsishvili? And then he [Saakashvili] outlined a very detailed plan on how to get rid of him.”
Okruashvili continued: “It was absolutely clear to me that it was a trap for me as well, because they would have gotten rid of me as well after getting rid of Patarkatsishvili.”
He said in response he told Saakashvili that he needed time to think about it.
“Meanwhile, I met with one person who at that time was working with the Americans and told him about the president’s proposal,” Okruashvili said. “I did it in the hope that the information would have been passed on to the Americans… It was Zaza Gogava [now Chief-of-Staff of the Georgian armed forces] However it did not work. Because after a month Saakashvili again repeated his demand about getting rid of Patarkatsishvili.”
“Then I met with another person in Turkey, whose identity I can not reveal. He also has close links with the Americans. He's not a Georgian citizen. I told him about Saakashvili’s plan. This information, it seemed, was delivered to the Americans, because since then Saakashvili never talked with me about getting rid of Patarkatsishvili.”President Saakashvili, who is currently in New York for the UN General Assembly Session, has yet to comment on his former ally’s allegations.


Irakli Okruashvili, ex-defense minister and once President Saakashvili’s closest ally, has accused the president of engaing in “anti-state steps” and “ordering murders.”
In his first public statement since he quit the government last November, Okruashvili also finally announced the launch of his political party – Movement for United Georgia. He refused to take question after his ten-minute speech, but said he planned to give further details and “answer all questions” during a TV appearance planned for later on Tuesday.
“I will definitely speak more on these crimes, which were masterminded by the authorities,” he said. Okruashvili added: “I was ordered by Saakashvili several times to liquidate certain influential and important people, which I refused to do.” He gave no further details.
There has been considerable speculation that “a war of compromising materials” would precede Okruashvili’s political comeback and the unveiling of his new opposition party.
Okruashvili said at the news conference in his party's headquarters in downtown Tbilisi that “fascist trends” and “anti-state steps undertaken by the authorities” had convinced him and his co-thinkers to set up the new movement. He also suggested that it hadn't been easy to launch the party.
People, he said, “are terrorized” because of “repression.” “Those with dissenting opinions are deemed ‘enemies of the state’ and the government is refusing to hold a dialogue with them,” he said.
This, he said, had made it difficult to convince people to engage in public life.
Okruashvili said that the anti-corruption campaign was “unreal.” The prisons, he said, were full of petty criminals, while corruption continued to thrive among “top level officials, Saakashvili’s inner circle and his family.”
“Three years ago when I was Interior Minister,” Okruashvili said, “I arrested Temur Alasania, the president’s uncle, for extortion of USD 200,000. I, however, had to release him on the president’s insistence.”
He also accused the authorities, and personally Saakashvili, of, as he put it, “a deliberate anti-Orthodox Church campaign” and “of fighting against Georgian traditions and values.”
“Saakashvili has an inner hatred of the Georgian Orthodox Church,” Okruashvili said. “The Georgian church is the most respected institution in Georgia. [Because of this] he [Saakashvili] perceives the Church as his main competitor. While in his inner circle, I often heard him talking about splitting the Church and discrediting the clergy.”
He also said that there was “a clear attempt” by the Saakashvili administration “to re-write Georgia’s history, as if nothing Georgian existed before the Rose Revolution, and everything new is being created by Saakashvili.”
Okruashvili also made an obvious attempt to appeal to other walks of life by saying that the older generation, those over 50, had been “neglected and humiliated.”
Internally displaced persons from Abkhazia and South Ossetia, he said, “were not regarded as human beings during ex-President Shevardnadze’s regime and this trend has continued in the Saakashvili regime as well.”
He also criticized the authorities’ policies towards the secessionist regions.
“We were one step away from reclaiming one of our lost territories,” Okruashvili said, apparently referring to South Ossetia.
Several months before his resignation from the cabinet, Okruashvili said that he had planned to celebrate the 2007 New Year in Tskhinvali, the capital of breakaway South Ossetia. Commentators said that Saakashvili’s decision to move Okruashvili last November from the Defense Ministry to the Ministry of Economy was largely because of Okruashvili’s perceived hawkish stance on South Ossetia.
In his speech on September 25, Okruashvili said that “only Saakashvili’s weakness, inability and fear” had foiled plans to reclaim the secessionist region. He also said Saakashvili was too weak to take an unspecified “historic decision.”
He also criticized Tbilisi’s decision to create the provisional South Ossetia administration, led by Dimitri Sanakoev. Okruashvili said Sanakoev had no respect and authority among the population of the region. He also said that installing Sanakoev was “an imaginary attempt” to unite the country.
Okruashvili explained his decision to “quietly” quit the government without voicing his discontent was because of, as he put it, his sense of “civil responsibility.”
“Army officers, who are still my friends, asked me to do it quietly,” he said and added that by doing so he had denied the country’s enemies an opportunity to speculate on a split within the government.
Okruashvili admitted that he shared “the responsibility for some mistakes because I was also once part of this government.”
“I, however, have done nothing but good for my country when in government,” he added. “So any attempt to discredit me will fail.”
Towards the end of his speech, he implied that he might have presidential ambitions.
“Georgia will be united only if it has a president who doesn't humiliate and insult its own people,” Okruashvili said.
Throughout his speech, Okruashvili's fellow party members stood beside him. They include: lawmakers Tea Tlashadze, Ketevan Makharashvili, Koka Guntsadze, Gia Tortladze and Gia Tsagareishvili; former Deputy Defense Minister Levan Nikolaishvili and a lawyer, Eka Beselia.
Two former journalists from Rustavi 2 TV station, Nana Lezhava and Natia Lazashvili, were also there. Both quit the TV station shortly after Rustavi 2 changed hands last November following Okruashvili’s resignation.