Tag Archives: Benjamin Netanyahu

Intensifying ‘Genocidal Policies of Collective Punishment,’ Israel Shuts Down Gaza’s Main Cargo Crossing

Hamas, which governs the Gaza Strip, called the move “a new Israeli crime against humanity.”

By Jessica Corbett, staff writer for Common Dreams. Published 7-10-2018

Israel announced on Monday new restrictions for the Kerem Shalom crossing, the main cargo entry point into Gaza. (Photo: David Katz/The Israel Project/Flickr)

In a move condemned by human rights advocates as another of the Israeli government’s “genocidal policies of collective punishment” in Gaza, Israel has announced stringent new import rules for the territory’s main cargo crossing.

As Israel and Egypt have maintained a naval, aerial, and land blockade of the occupied territory for more than a decade, the Kerem Shalom crossing is how most commercial goods and foreign aid reach Gazans. Under the new restrictions, only food, medicine, and “humanitarian equipment” can come through the entry point. Continue reading

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Protests Against Trump and Israeli Occupation as US Embassy Officially Set to Open in Jerusalem

“By relocating its embassy to Jerusalem, the U.S. endorses and unlawfully legitimizes Israel’s policies and measures that seek to undermine Palestinians’ fundamental human rights.”

By Jake Johnson, staff writer for Common Dreams. Published 5-13-2018

“The move further perpetuates the longstanding impunity granted to Israel in the face of its continuous and systematic violations of international law, including by endorsing the illegal annexation of Jerusalem.” (Photo: @omdimbeyachad/Twitter)

With the U.S. embassy officially set to open in Jerusalem on Monday after President Donald Trump recognized the city as Israel’s capital last December—a move that has been decried by much of the international community and human rights groups as a “stark violation of international law“—Israelis opposed to the embassy move gathered in Jerusalem Saturday night to denounce Trump, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, and the brutal occupation of Palestinian territory.


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Proving Eager to ‘Get the War Started,’ Pompeo Ramps Up Anti-Iran Rhetoric in Israel and Saudi Arabia

“Less than three years after Iran signed the Iran Deal and began dramatically cutting back its nuclear program, Israel, Saudi, and the U.S. are fast coordinating a military attack on Iran.”

By Jake Johnson, staff writer for Common Dreams. Published 4-30-2018

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Tel Aviv, April 29, 2018. Photo: US State Department

Wasting no time confirming fears that he would would bring his disdain for diplomacy and zeal for war to the world stage if confirmed as Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo used his first official visits to Saudi Arabia and Israel this weekend to escalate the Trump administration’s anti-Iran rhetoric while ignoring the horrific atrocities currently being committed by America’s key Middle East allies.

Speaking alongside Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir in Riyadh on Sunday, Pompeo claimed Iran is “the greatest sponsor of terrorism in the world” and said the Trump administration is “determined to make sure it never possesses a nuclear weapon.” Continue reading

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Under New Deal, Palestinians to Be Offered Less Than Half of West Bank

This deal is, it appears, being cooked up with the co-operation of Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and the Gulf States. It will be presented to Palestinians on a take-it-or-leave-it basis.

By Ben Jamal  Published 3-16-2018 by MintPress News

Screenshot: NBC

 

Having announced his intention to move the U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem in December of last year, reversing years of U.S. policy and violating international law, President Donald Trump seems determined to further rub salt in the wound.

He announced weeks ago that the new embassy would open on May 15. No more provocative a date could have been chosen.

May 15 marks 70 years since the state of Israel was established in a process that saw 750,000 Palestinians expelled from their homes and over 450 towns and villages destroyed. Continue reading

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Amid Ongoing Israeli Crackdown, Three Palestinians Killed in Al-Aqsa Mosque Protests

Thousands of Palestinians and Israeli forces clashed Friday during protests against security devices recently installed at one of the world’s holiest sites

By Jessica Corbett, staff writer for Common Dreams. Published 7-21-2017

Photo: @firstqiblah/Twitter

At least three Palestinians reportedly have been killed by gunfire, and more than a hundred injured, in clashes with Israeli forces on Friday, during large-scale protests against enhanced security measures at the Al-Aqsa mosque, according to reports from the Ma’an News Agency and Al-Jazeera.

“An Israeli settler killed an 18-year-old Palestinian man in the Ras al-Amud neighborhood,” Al-Jazeera reports. Hospital officials confirmed a second Palestinian was killed by live fire during the demonstrations after Friday prayer, and a third man died during clashes in the West Bank. Continue reading

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Has Obama Abandoned Israel? What You’re Not Being Told

By Darius Shahtahmasebi. Published 12-30-2016 by The Anti-Media

Photo: Public domain via Wikimedia Commons

In 2011, linguist and foreign policy critic Noam Chomsky was asked whether he thought Obama was as bad as George W. Bush, to which Chomsky responded: “he’s worse.” Asked why, Chomsky cited Obama’s use of the U.N. veto at the Security Council level, which killed a resolution condemning settlement expansions that Israel was building in 2011.

After that, Obama was famously known for placing very few limits on Israel (with the exception of blocking an arms transfer during Operation Protective Edge, for example). There was also the supposed fallout between Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Obama over the Iranian nuclear agreement last year, but that agreement had nothing to do with curbing Israel’s power in the region. Anyone paying attention to the Iranian nuclear issue knows the agreement was largely symbolic and meaningless as sanctions targeting Iran have continued quite dramatically. Continue reading

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Turkey-Israel Pact Betrays Gazans, Grants Immunity for 2010 Flotilla Attack

Normalized relations allow Israel to maintain siege on Gaza and raise the prospect of a mutually-beneficial natural gas deal

By Lauren McCauley, staff writer for Common Dreams. Published 6-27-2016

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Monday that he was "not willing to compromise" over Israel's protracted siege on Gaza. Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Monday that he was “not willing to compromise” over Israel’s protracted siege on Gaza. Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Abandoning Palestinians and its pledge to fight Israel’s protracted blockade of Gaza, the Turkish government on Monday announced an agreement to normalize relations with the Middle East powerhouse—reportedly just in time for a new, lucrative natural gas deal.

The two countries have been engaged in a bitter dispute since 2010 when the Israeli Defense Force (IDF) attacked the Turkish-owned Mavi Marmara, which was carrying humanitarian supplies to the people of the Gaza Strip, killing nine people at the time and and fatally injuring a tenth. Continue reading

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Netanyahu Wants Fence Around Israel to Keep Out ‘Wild Beasts’

‘In the environment in which we live we must defend ourselves from the wild beasts,’ Prime Minister says.

By Andrea Germanos, staff writer for Common Dreams. Published 2-10-2016

A section of the wall in the West Bank. (Photo: hjl/flickr/cc)

A section of the wall in the West Bank. (Photo: hjl/flickr/cc)

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has proposed a plan to encircle his entire country with a fence as protection against “wild beasts,” referring to those in neighboring Arab states.

He made the comments Tuesday while visiting an 18-mile stretch of fence already under construction on the Israel-Jordan border.

“At the end of the day, in the State of Israel as I see it, there will be a fence like this one surrounding its entirety,” he said, according to a statement on the Prime Minister’s website.

“They tell me: Is this what you want to do, defend the villa? The answer is yes. What, are we going to surround the entire State of Israel with a fence, a barrier? The answer is yes, unequivocally. In the environment in which we live we must defend ourselves from the wild beasts.”

He added that it would be a multi-year project, multi-million dollar project.

“Perhaps the most notorious of Israel’s walls built for ‘security purposes’ runs within the occupied West Bank,” as Al Jazeera reports. It was deemed illegal by the International Court of Justice in 2004.

Haaretz columnist Asher Schechter argues that “Israel is already not even trying to function like a democracy,” and writes that Netanyahu’s statement is “a display of everything wrong with Israel under his leadership. Israel circa 2016 is fearful, hateful, and paranoid, self-involved to a degree even Donald Trump would find distasteful, and soon it might have big walls surrounding it from every which way, quarantining it, and a political system where only Jews need apply.

On Wednesday Netanyahu also spoke to the Israeli parliament and referred to the existing fence along the border with Egypt, saying that it prevented Israel from being “overrun” with migrants.

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Your Move, US Congress: EU and UN Back Iran Nuclear Accord

International bodies back diplomatic agreement, agree to lift punishing economic sanctions

Written by Lauren McCauley, staff writer for Common Dreams. Published 7-20-15.

United Nations Security Council. Photo via Twitter

United Nations Security Council. Photo via Twitter

Sending a strong signal to the U.S. Congress to follow suit, both the European Union and United Nations Security Council on Monday endorsed the nuclear agreement between Iran and world powers.

As part of the accord, both bodies agreed to end crippling economic sanctions against Iran in exchange for new limits to its domestic nuclear program.

Representatives from each of the 15 countries within the Security Council unanimously voted to back the landmark deal reached last week between Iran and the so-called P5+1 Nations, which include the United States, Russia, China, United Kingdom, France, Germany, and the European Union.

Following the Security Council vote, U.S. President Barack Obama said he hoped the move would “send a clear message that the overwhelming number of countries” recognize that diplomacy is “by far our strongest approach to ensuring that Iran does not get a nuclear weapon.”

According to the text, in exchange for Iran’s compliance, seven UN resolutions passed since 2006 to sanction Iran will be gradually terminated. However, BBC reports, “The resolution also allows for the continuation of the UN arms embargo on Iran for up to five years and the ban on sales of ballistic missile technology for up to eight.”

The UN’s nuclear watchdog, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), is charged with the “verification and monitoring of Iran’s nuclear commitments.”

Meeting in Brussels, EU Foreign Ministers also formally committed to lift economic sanctions against Iran. The lawmakers, though, also elected to maintain the EU’s ban on the supply of ballistic missile technology and sanctions related to human rights, in accordance with the agreement.

The votes mark another step forward within a major worldwide agreement, reached after years of arduous negotiations.

The onus now falls on the U.S. Congress to also approve the accord, which was formally given to both Houses on Sunday, beginning a 60-day deliberation period. Conservative U.S. lawmakers and other warhawks, echoing the words of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, have tried to thwart the international agreement.

“There is broad international consensus around this issue,” Obama continued in his address. Then speaking beyond the agreement’s critics, he added: “My working assumption is that Congress will pay attention to that broad basic consensus.”

More than 150,000 people have so far signed a petition calling on Congress to back the deal and take us off “the path to confrontation and war with Iran.”

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 License.

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Rights Campaigners ‘Disturbed’ as Obama Offers Further Spike to Israeli Military Aid

‘The fact that Netanyahu’s temper tantrum about the Iran deal could go towards an increase in aid is disturbing,’ said Naomi Dann of Jewish Voice for Peace

Written by Sarah Lazar, staff writer for Common Dreams. Published 7-16-15.

President Barack Obama told Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that he is ready to hold "intensive discussions" about bolstering Israel's military. (Photo: White House/flickr/public domain)

President Barack Obama told Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that he is ready to hold “intensive discussions” about bolstering Israel’s military. (Photo: White House/flickr/public domain)

President Barack Obama offered Israel even more military aid this week as a consolation prize for the Iran deal, raising the concerns of human rights campaigners who oppose U.S. funding of atrocities against Palestinians.

Speaking with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Tuesday, the same day the accord was reached, Obama said he is ready to hold “intensive discussions” about bolstering Israel’s military, according to unnamed administration officials cited by The New York Times.

However, Netanyahu—who has vigorously opposed diplomacy with Iran—rebuffed the gesture.

Obama indicated in an interview with the Times on Tuesday that Netanyahu is likely holding out to see if he can still sink the Iran deal. Netanyahu “perhaps thinks he can further influence the congressional debate, and I’m confident we’re going to be able to uphold this deal and implement it without Congress preventing that,” said the president.

Due to recently-passed legislation, the U.S. House and Senate will have 60 days to review Tuesday’s agreement between Iran and the United States, Russia, China, United Kingdom, France, Germany, and the European Union. If lawmakers were to vote against the deal, and amass the votes to override a presidential veto, Obama’s hands would be tied on sanctions relief and the deal would sink. Continue reading

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