A British court issued an arrest warrant for Israel’s former foreign minister over war crimes allegedly committed in Gaza this year – only to withdraw it when it was discovered that she was not in the UK, it emerged today.
Tzipi Livni, a member of the war cabinet during Operation Cast Lead, had been due to address a meeting in London on Sunday but cancelled her attendance in advance. The Guardian has established that Westminster magistrates’ court issued the warrant at the request of lawyers acting for some of the Palestinian victims of the fighting but it was later dropped.
The warrant marks the first time an Israeli minister or former minister has faced arrest in the UK and is evidence of a growing effort to pursue war crimes allegations under “universal jurisidiction”. Israel rejects these efforts as politically motivated, saying it acted in self-defence against Hamas rocket attacks from Gaza. [continued…]
The White House condemns the torching of a mosque, yet respectable Americans contribute to a yeshiva whose rabbi said it’s okay to kill gentile babies. It is no surprise that the American administration tacitly, if unenthusiastically, accepted the excuse that the map of national priority zones the cabinet approved on Sunday does not violate the decision to freeze construction in the settlements.
How can President Barack Obama object to furthering education in a settlement like Yitzhar, located in the heart of the West Bank? After all, his own tax revenues contribute to the flourishing of the Od Yosef Chai Shechem yeshiva, the settlement’s crowning glory.
This is the same yeshiva whose rabbi said it is permissible to kill gentile babies because of “the future danger that will arise if they are allowed to grow into evil people like their parents.” In his latest book, the head of the yeshiva, Yitzhak Shapira, who bears the honorable title of rabbi, even permits killing anyone “who, through his remarks and so forth, weakens our kingdom” (Obama, beware!). [continued…]
Green Zone – is a 20 minute long documentary, exploring Israel’s discriminatory policies in occupied East Jerusalem. Since 1967 urban planning has been used by the Israeli establishment as a tool to contain the growth of the Palestinian population in the mixed city. The impact of these policies has been catastrophic for many Palestinian residents, resulting in an average of 100 house demolitions every year. The film incorporates interviews with Israeli and Palestinian residents, architects, journalists and politicians, in an attempt to present this complex situation, which has significant ramifications to the whole peace process.
The dogs of Shiloh run about, excited. Barking loudly, they try to chase after the long convoy of security vehicles passing the doghouses. But they aren’t going anywhere: They’re collared to long iron chains.
No sight could better illustrate the futile journey of the inspectors and police officers through the West Bank this week.
They’re here to deliver the building freeze orders, to people who rip them up in front of the cameras. This week, they traveled from one settlement to the next, and we followed, an odd convoy of armored vehicles from the Civil Administration, the Yasam special police forces and the Border Police, two cars full of journalists and one car driven by a settler activist reporting to his friends from the field and giving advance notice.
Some settlements the convoy passed quickly, without stopping, which raised even more speculation about the objective of this shadowy trip. At other settlements, its way was blocked. When the convoy parked at one West Bank junction, a few Palestinian passersby from a nearby village stared. They had no idea where it was headed; it seemed like the members of the secured convoy weren’t so sure either. [continued…]
The head rabbi of a far-right West Bank yeshiva declared Monday after his school was ousted from the Israel Defense Forces hesder program that he encouraged his students to refuse settlement evacuation orders because he had an obligation to “speak his inner truth.”
Rabbi Eliezer Melamed, whose Har Bracha Yeshiva’s status was revoked late Sunday, wrote in an article published on Arutz 7 that he had skipped a critical hearing on the matter with Defense Minister Ehud Barak because he would not give in to “governmental pressure.”
“Although I knew by the Defense Minister’s rudeness that this could cause the end of the arrangement with Yeshiva Har Bracha,” wrote Melamed. “And despite all of the harsh significance that it entailed, I was obligated to stick to my independent principles and not give in.” [continued…]
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s cabinet voted more funding for Jewish settlements on Sunday as violence over a temporary settlement building freeze in enclaves in the occupied West Bank increased.
Defense Minister Ehud Barak voted against the plan, saying it would reward settlers living in parts of the West Bank where Palestinians have lately come under attack, such as a village where parts of a mosque was torched at the weekend.
Netanyahu condemned the burning of carpets and copies of the Koran at Yasuf village near Nablus, where graffiti scrawled in Hebrew called the act “a price tag.” It was similar to a slogan left by suspected settlers after other acts of vandalism. [continued…]