A New Flotilla Steams Towards Gaza

by Elizabeth Murray from Consortium News

“Islands Bruegge,” an idyllic harbor park that stretches along the east bank of Copenhagen, was alive with a celebratory crowd on Monday as three ships were about to steam towards Gaza. The 2018 Freedom Flotilla—two ships from Sweden and one from Norway — will call at ports in Germany, Holland, Belgium, France, Spain, Portugal and Italy before traveling through the Mediterranean Sea to its final destination: Gaza harbor.

Volunteer boat guides explained the history and mission of the Gaza Flotilla movement, which has organized a number of journeys to demonstrate solidarity with the people of Gaza and break the illegal economic siege. An independent U.N. panel and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) say the blockade violates the Geneva Conventions and is illegal.

Israel dragged the last Israeli settlers from Gaza and withdrew the Israeli Defense Force in 2005. When the Palestinian Authority lost a 2006 election in Gaza to Hamas, Israel imposed the illegal blockade. A considerable number of young Danish people learned about Gaza for the first time and walked away with new political awareness of the injustices suffered by Gaza’s children, who are denied the same carefree life enjoyed by Danish children.

The upbeat music and offerings of traditional Palestinian falafel wraps washed down with Danish beer created a festive atmosphere at the Freedom Flotilla tent Passerby lined up to buy ‘Boat to Gaza’ T-shirts, Palestinian kaffiyehs (traditional checkered scarves) while a Palestinian musician strummed the oud (traditional Palestinian lute) and sang a song of sentimental love for his Palestinian homeland. A local Palestinian man danced and waved the Palestinian flag while the crowd clapped along…

[read more here]

Israel Exploits International Sentiment Surrounding Death of Shimon Perez to Bomb Gaza, Commit Piracy on International Waters and Start a New Illegal Settlement in West Bank

by Scott Creighton

The policy makers in Israel always know how to take advantage of any situation in order to advance their criminal agenda, don’t they?

In the wake of the death of the brutal war-monger Shimon Perez, when public sentiment in support of Israel was at it’s highest since their illegal bombing of civilians in Gaza… the last time…, Israel has apparently decided to take full advantage of the moment in order to further their agenda by launching a series of international crimes against humanity. It’s like they see any measure of international empathy directed their way as some form of sheckles they can spend on cover for their actions.

But it doesn’t work that way. Or at least, it shouldn’t.

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Is anti-BDS group Sawtona impersonating Palestinians?

by Charlotte Silver, Electronic Intifada

Claiming to be a group of Palestinians opposed to the growing boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement in the US, an organization calling itself Sawtona – “our voice” in Arabic – has emerged over the last two months.

But the organization does not appear to be what it says it is.

The group first emerged at Indiana University–Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) last month when faculty and students were meeting to discuss BDS and support for Palestinians.

It then popped up at City University of New York (CUNY), just ahead of today’s scheduled graduate student council vote on a resolution to boycott Israeli academic institutions.

The group claims to be a voice “from the ground” in Palestine that is dedicated to ending Israel’s occupation. But so far the only objective Sawtona has in fact pursued is to stop BDS, claiming it does more harm than good for Palestinians.

And some evidence – including fraudulent postings on Facebook – cast significant doubt on the group’s central claim that it is run by Palestinians.

Rather, the group would appear to be based in present-day Israel – not Palestinian cities in the occupied West Bank where people representing Sawtona claim to live.

Sawtona has emerged at a moment when Israel has greatly stepped up its efforts to sabotage and attack the BDS movement, including efforts to undermine it by Israeli intelligence agencies.

[read more here]

Glenn Greenwald: Hillary Clinton Has Embraced Some of the Most Brutal Dictators in the World (video)

(Yeah, Glenn has his issues, but he’s right on this one)

How the New York Times Whitewashed a Gruesome Videotaped Israeli Execution (B’tselem video included)

(Could you imagine how much coverage this would have received from the MSM had the soldier been Iranian, North Korean or Syrian? For the record, this is what a real execution video looks like so compare it to the fake “ISIS” ones if you like.)

from Alter Net

…The NYT chose this headline “Israel Soldier Detained in Shooting of Palestinian” to cover a crime that was filmed—and, had it not been recorded, one that would otherwise likely have gone unnoticed. The crime is composed of two disturbing scenes, both equally severe (and painful): In the first, an Israeli soldier executes a motionless and injured young Palestinian man in Hebron by a bullet in the head from point zero, and the other soldiers carry on as if nothing happened. And in the second, Israeli medics and soldiers ignore the injured Palestinian (before he was shot the second time) and leave him lying on the ground as if he were a piece of trash.

(video after break. It is disturbing)

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Bernie Sanders Gives Tepid/Measured Speech on Israeli/Palestinian Conflict (video and partial transcript)

by Scott Creighton

UPDATE: For comparison purposes, you can read the transcript of Donald Trump’s war-mongering, sycophantic pandering speech to AIPAC, here.

Bernie Sanders politely declined an invitation to speak at this year’s AIPAC convention in D.C. yesterday. The other presidential candidates went there and pandered to the Likudnik Lobby as if their professional lives depended on it, slandering everyone from Iran to Palestinian children “being taught to hate” the Jewish state for no other reason than… Muslims.

Bernie gave a lengthy stump speech in Utah then he gave a little press conference type address in which he delivered what he claims would have been his AIPAC speech. It is notable for a number of reasons but the most obvious is… he chose not to give it to the AIPAC crowd… which probably would have booed him off the stage if he gave it there or physically dragged him off the stage, exposing AIPAC and it’s rabid followers for what it and they really are.

So, was his decision to give this speech half a country away a decision he made in his best interests or in theirs? Hard too say. My guess is “both”

I have copied part of the transcript of his speech from his website and posted the full video below my comments.

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45,000 demand Israel PM Netanyahu’s arrest for ‘war crimes’ during UK state visit

UPDATE: I am told it is nearly 54,000 at this point

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from RT

A petition calling for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to be arrested for ‘war crimes’ when he arrives in London next month has been signed by over 45,000 people.

Netanyahu will arrive in London on a state visit in September and meet with British Prime Minister David Cameron.

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