Ray Goodlass

Rays peace activism

Month: February, 2013

More suggestions that a third Intifada may be looming

News in ‘Occupied Palestine’ that President Obama will visit the Al Aqsa mosque during his forthcoming visit to Israel has Hamas forecasting trouble. Does this mean that a third Intifada is looming? Given the unrest caused by the death after Israeli torture of  Palestinian Arafat Jaradat is could be so. It was Sharon’s visit to the same mosque that provoked the second Intifada. Why is the ‘West’ so insensitive and provocative?

Is Israel provoking a third Palestinian Intifada?

More press news about Arafat Jaradat’s death in an Israeli jail, now widely  assumed to be the result of torture, which even the Israeli’s a close to admitting. It may  provoke a third Intifada, but interestingly President  Abbas is suggesting that is the Isaelis intention, as reported by SMH’s Middle East correspondent Ruth Pollard. It wouldn’t surprise me, as she usually has her ear to the ground and is also quite perceptive.

Hagel was confirmed yesterday as US Secretary of Defence, but as I wrote yesterday, it probably won’t impact on the peace process.

Mainlt bad news, but nothing surprisingly new, unfortunately

 More unrest inPalestine over the death in an Israeli prison of protester Arafat Jaradat. Interestingly, Palestinian President Abbas has called for calm. Is he doing Israel’s bidding by carrying out its policing for it? That’s worrying, but nothing new, unforunately.

And today news that Israeli ‘Settlers’ have stormed the Al Aqsa mosque on the Temple Mount in East Jerusalem, by far the most important Muslim site in what was once Palestine. Would the Israeli government would rein in its own citizens, but of course almost all parties kow-tow to the right wing settlers.

Also news this morning that Chuck Hagel’s nomination as Secretary of Defence may come to the vote today in the US Senate after weeks of fillibustering. I know the Secretary of Defence won’t have much influence over foreign policy, let alone US efforts, ot lack of them, to move on the Israel/Palestine peace process, but from what I’ve read he would be a step in the right direction, though of course h\is nomination could fail given the Republican main stream’s reaction to him.

Good news, and a correction

My Letter to the Editor responding to Australia First’s racist attack on my Palestine Peace project interview weas published today, which does something to put the record straight, and shows how zenophobic Australia First is..
And I need to make a correction to yesterday’s post: the name of the Palestinian who died in an Israeli jail under torture was Arafat Jaradat, not Yasser. From footage on roday’s Aljazeera news it does look as though the protests could turn into a third Intifada. I hope it doesn’t turn really violent.

Palestinian prisoner dies after torture in Israeli jail.

Palestinian protester Yasser Jaradat died yesterday in an Israeli jail, probably killed by his captors, according to Aljazeera TV news from Doha. Israel says he died of a heart attack but the Palestinian Authority says there is no evidence of this, instead he died after torture.

Shades of Prsoner X, Ben Zygier, though he suicided. Jaradat’s death is likely to cause an uprising. Providing it is peaceful I would support that, though I wonder if it will have any effect at all on Israeli policies and practice, let alone on American or world opinion.


More on the Palestinian film-maker, and also ‘Prisoner X’

The news about Palestinian Oscar nominee Emad Burnat being held at LA International Airport has now been fleshed out. His film covers the village of Bilin’s fight against the Wall, which was one of the very few places to succeed in having the wall re-routed, though the fight to recover their stolen land goes on (and on).

Also more on Ben Zygier, aka Prisoner X, in that news in yesterday’s SMH claims that Shin Bet, Israel’s security agency, did tell ASIO of his imprisonment. A nice and cosy relationship between the two bodies, it seems. Pity it took this long for the story to make it out to the public domain. However, there seems to be distinct lack of fit between ASIO and our Attorney-General and our Foreign Ministers and PMs. No doubt things are tense in Canberra, but more to the point, why are ASIO and our Attorney-General so pally with Israel’s security services, amd so secretative about that relationship? However, I guess our security services being in bed with those of a military dictatorship is, unfortunately, nothing new. 

American anti-Palestinian mindset at work, unfortunately

Yesterday Emad Burnat, co-director of ‘5 Broken Cameras’ and a Palestinian Oscar nominee, was held at Los Angeles International Airport. After calls to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences he was eventually allowed in, but really! Is this yet another example of the USA dancing to Israel’s tune?

Given that we need the USA to make its massive amounts of aid to Israel (well over $8m a day, every day!) to be conditional over issues such as Israel halting settlement building, dismantling the wall, and returning to pre-1967 boundaries we need a major change in both its mind-set and policies. 

Having invited Livni in, which way will Netanyahu now go?

In Israel Netanahu has included Tzipi Livni and her Hatnua Party into his still being formed coalition government. Hatnua is described as a ‘Centrist’ party, yet it doesn’t include Peace negotiations in its platform, as I observed in  the lead up to the Israeli elections when I was there in January.

Livni will only bring him six Knesset votes, so the $64,000 question is still which of the ‘major’ new parties will he invite into his coalition, the progressive pro-peace ‘There is a Future’ or the adamantly no peace ‘A Jewish Home’, which actually wants to annex all of Palestine? It would be very hopeful if it was the former, but I have my doubts.

Bad and some personal good news today

According to press reports in yesterday’s SMH President Obama won’t use his forthcoming trip to Israel and meeeting with Prime Minister Netanyahu to “push new peace proposals”. Bugger, to put it mildly. This is both a missed opportunity, and a manifestation of my worst fears, as ‘conditional aid’ (rather than providing aid regardless of Israel flouting international law and UN resolutions) from the USA to Israel is one way of achieving progress towards a ‘just peace’. 

In other news my interview on local ABC radio yesterday about my Palestine Peace Volunteer project seemed to go well. This past week has been very productive in terms of my being an ‘Ambassador for Palestine’ and ‘Advocate for a Just Peace’. 

On being an ‘Ambassador for Palestine’ and an advocate of ‘A Just Peace’.

My Palestinian Peace Project story was in yesterday’s DA, and it was quite positive, even sympathetic, though there was a fairly obvious cut or edit point in the middle where it had clearly been shortended by a sub-editor. However, that it happened at all and in the way it did is the main point.

Today local ABC Radio is interviewing me on the same topic, so I’ve certainly achieved some useful coverage in my post-peace trip project of being an ‘Ambassador for Palestine’ and advocate for ‘A Just Peace’.