The War in Context  
  Iraq + war on terrorism + Middle East conflict + critical perspectives     
CONGRESSIONAL TREASON?

"We are all members of Likud now"
Our Vichy Congress

"George Sutherland," Counterpunch, May 10, 2002

In March, Senator James Inhofe of Oklahoma took the Senate floor and said the September 11 attacks were punishment by God in response to U.S. policy toward Israel. Asserting that Israel is "entitled" to the West Bank, he also criticized his fellow citizens who counselled the Israelis to use restraint, in effect blaming them for the terrorist attacks of September 11: "One of the reasons I believe the spiritual door was opened for an attack against the United States of America is that the policy of our government has been to ask the Israelis, and demand it with pressure, not to retaliate in a significant way against the terrorist strikes that have been launched against them."

According to this Tornado-Belt St. Augustine, God in effect allowed airliners to be flown into the World Trade Center and the Pentagon because U.S. actions towards Israel offended the Almighty. In other words, the United States was punished because the Bush administration had been insufficiently worshipful towards Israel (the $3 billion annually that Congress squeezes out of the taxpayer as tribute to the Jewish State is apparently not sufficient in the opinion of this self-styled "fiscal conservative"--and in the opinion of the Almighty Himself, Whose inscrutable will Inhofe claims to be able to interpret).
[The complete article]

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The solution is the problem
Noam Chomsky, The Guardian, May 11, 2002

A year ago, the Hebrew University sociologist Baruch Kimmerling observed that "what we feared has come true - War appears an unavoidable fate", an "evil colonial" war. His colleague Ze'ev Sternhell noted that the Israeli leadership was now engaged in "colonial policing, which recalls the takeover by the white police of the poor neighbourhoods of the blacks in South Africa during the apartheid era". Both stress the obvious: there is no symmetry between the "ethno-national groups" in this conflict, which is centred in territories that have been under harsh military occupation for 35 years.
[The complete article]

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RICHARD PERLE: PRINCE OF DARKNESS

The Prince of Darkness explains Iraq

David Corn, AlterNet, May 10, 2002

"I think Perle is smoking dope, just like the majority of these guys who've held high level positions but never served a stitch of time in combat. It's a lot hotter on the battlefield than it is in the halls of the Pentagon, and the margin of error is much slimmer."
[The complete article]

US action on Iraq slowed by rift over whom to support
Michaek R. Gordon, New York Times, May 10

Despite repeated vows by President Bush to force Saddam Hussein from power, Bush administration officials are still at odds over which Iraqi opposition groups the United States should support, American officials and Iraqi opposition leaders say.
[The complete article]

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A voice in the wilderness
David Bonior, U.S. House of Representatives, May 2, 2002

Comment -- There have been very few members of Congress willing to appeal for justice for Palestinians. One such congressman is David Bonior and these are his remarks when he spoke in opposition to the resolution expressing support for Israel, passed in the House on May 2:

Congressman Bonior: Mr. Speaker, I rise in strong opposition to this resolution. This resolution blindly supports Israel's actions against the Palestinians and wholly denies the generations of suffering of the Palestinian people. This would be wrong at any time, but in light of what has happened at Jenin and Bethlehem, Ramallah, Haifa, Jerusalem, and Netanya, and what continues to happen today, this resolution is dangerous.

Like most Americans, I support Israel. However, just like most Americans, I do not support and will not support all of Israel's policies. Generations of Palestinians and Israelis have suffered in the region, but the violence of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict cannot be examined or addressed in isolation of decades of occupation of millions of Palestinians.

Israeli suffering is something that this body understands and discusses. But what of the suffering of the Palestinian people? What of the history of land confiscation, water rights, torture, settlements, collective punishments, home demolitions, curfews, administrative detentions, expulsions, child labor? Where is the language about the 1,000-plus Palestinians killed in the last 19 months, bodies found under rubble? Where is the language about the thousands made homeless by the bulldozers in Jenin alone? Where is the language about the relief agencies denied access to treat the sick and wounded? We know that relief agencies, including the International Committee of the Red Cross, were prevented from reaching and evacuating and treating the sick and wounded throughout the West Bank and Gaza Strip, resulting in untold deaths, from the mother who bled to death from a normally nonfatal wound in front of her children, to the couple buried alive under rubble for 8 days. The stories coming to light are horrific.
Rarely on this floor is there discussion of the nearly 420 Palestinian villages destroyed at the time of Israel's founding in 1948, or the 3.8 million refugees registered by the United Nations or the estimated 2 million others not registered. Palestinians live in 59 different recognized refugees camps in misery, in poverty, with no hope of a better future for the next generations that are born into those camps.

Can we know today what 38 percent employment in the West Bank or 75 percent unemployment in Gaza can do to a population? While we cling to the hope of peace that Oslo would bring, Palestinians saw a remarkable growth in settlements. As of February, Peace Now estimates the settlers' population at 230,000, having approximately doubled in the last 10 years under Oslo.

Mr. Speaker, this is not a good resolution. I encourage Members to vote against it.

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Militarism's lethal logic
It's better to make more friends than name more enemies

James P. Pinkerton, Los Angeles Times, May 10, 2002

Americans might like to think of themselves as unique, but history suggests a pattern of behavior into which superpowers can stumble. Here's what the late economist Joseph Schumpeter wrote about the Roman Republic, the predecessor to the Roman Empire: "There was no corner of the known world where some interest was not alleged to be in danger or under actual attack. If the interests were not Roman, they were of Rome's allies; and if Rome had no allies, the allies would be invented. When it was utterly impossible to contrive such an interest, why then it was national honor that had been insulted." At all times, Schumpeter noted, Roman leaders maintained "an aura of legality"; that is, they declared themselves to be on the side of truth and justice, dealing decisively with rogues. But the result was a Rome constantly at war. Soon, as a matter of military necessity, democracy was supplanted by dictatorship, and eventually the Romans could no longer beat back all the enemies they had made.
[The complete article]

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The politics of verticality
Eyal Weizman, Open Democracy, May 2002

Israeli architect, Eyal Weizman, argues that none of us have a coherent mental map of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. We're missing verticality. In this series of articles and photo-essays published by Open Democracy, he paints the extraordinary, three-dimensional battle over the West Bank: from settlements to sewage, archaeology to Apaches.

Introduction - The experience of territory in the West Bank explodes simple political boundaries and "crashes three-dimensional space into six dimensions - three Jewish and three Arab."

Maps - Two-dimensional maps, fundamental to the understanding of political borders, have been drawn again and again for the West Bank. Each time they have failed to capture its vertical divisions.

Hills and Valleys of the West Bank - Mountains play a special part in Zionist holiness. The settlers' surge into the folded terrain of the West Bank and up to its summits combines imperatives of politics and spirituality.

West Bank Settlements - Many different types of settlements perch atop the hills of the West Bank, providing islands of biblical identity that are also strategic vantage points.

From Water to Shit - The aquifers deep below the West Bank are a battleground, just as much as the rivers of sewage split through its valleys by both Israeli and Palestinian settlements.

Excavating Sacredness - In a quest for biblical archaeology, Israel has attempted to resurrect the subterreanean fragments of ancient civilization to testify for its present-day rights above ground.

Jerusalem - From the struggles over Haram al-Sharif (the Temple Mount) to the historic stone with which all Greater Jerusalem is now clad, Jerusalem is an intense case study of the politics of verticality.

Roads: Over and Under - A bewildering network of bypass roads weave over and under one another, attempting to separate the Israeli and Palestinian communities. And the future could be wilder - a 48-kilometre viaduct between Gaza and the West Bank.

Control in the Air - Now and in the final settlement proposals, Israel holds control of the airspace over the West Bank. It uses its domination of the airspace and electromagnetic spectrum to drop a net of surveillance and pinpoint executions over the territory.

The complete Politics of Verticality including 13 photo-essays as a PDF document

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Palestinians want reforms, too, but not on US and Israeli terms
Suzanne Goldenberg, The Guardian, May 10, 2002

There can hardly be a Palestinian in the West Bank or Gaza who is not desperate for an overhaul of Yasser Arafat's corrupt and paralysed administration. But they want no part of the reforms being preached by President George Bush and Israel's prime minister, Ariel Sharon.
[The complete article]

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Support for Refuseniks
Neve Gordon, The Nation, May 9, 2002

The refusenik community has grown dramatically in the past months, and now comprises more than 1,000 conscientious objectors, twenty-nine of whom are currently serving time in military prison. About half of these belong to the new movement "Courage to Refuse", while the rest are either members of Yesh Gvul ("There Is a Limit," ) or 18-year-olds who have completed high school and are unwilling to be conscripted. Considering that the average sentence of a reserve soldier is twenty-eight days, the number of refuseniks who have been in prison since the outbreak of the second intifada is about 100 and not merely the twenty-nine who are currently incarcerated.
[The complete article]

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After Jenin
Yitzhak Laor, London Review of Books, April 22, 2002

What has the war between us and the Palestinians been about? About the Israeli attempt to slice what's left of Palestine into four cantons, by building 'separation roads', new settlements and checkpoints. The rest is killing, terror, curfew, house demolitions and propaganda. Palestinian children live in fear and despair, their parents humiliated in front of them. Palestinian society is being dismantled, and public opinion in the West blames it on the victims - always the easiest way to face the horror. I know: my father was a German Jew.
[The complete article]

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PUBLIC ARE AHEAD OF POLITICIANS IN ISRAEL AND U.S.

Poll: 59% say W. Bank, Gaza exit would renew peace process
Associated Press, May 9, 2002

More than half of Israelis believe withdrawing troops from Palestinian territories and dismantling most Jewish settlements there will help put the peace process back on track, according to an opinion poll. [...] In the poll, 59 percent of those questioned said they believed a unilateral withdrawal of troops and settlers from the West Bank and Gaza Strip would lead to the renewal of the peace process while 72 percent felt it would improve the country's international standing.
[The complete article]

Bush approach on Mideast conflict "out of step" with U.S. public, poll shows
Jim Lobe, OneWorld, May 9, 2002

The United States public may not be nearly as supportive of the Israeli government of Prime Minister Ariel Sharon in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict as recent actions by Congress and the Bush administration suggest, according to a surprising new poll released in Washington Wednesday.
[The complete article]

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LACK OF LEADERSHIP SPANS FROM EAST TO WEST

Comment -- A president who lacks both vision and a strong intellect cannot be expected to coral a team of policymakers that is split into factions, each pushing their own conflicting agendas. GWB thought he could wing it and rely on others to make up for his own deficits, but having dispersed his power he now faces the challenge of trying to reclaim power from individuals who neither want to relinquish it, nor believe in the competance of a president who can't figure out where he's going.

Policy changes and splits inside administration add to confusion
Julian Borger, The Guardian, May 9, 2002

Although the White House moved yesterday to deny Israel's claims that it had US backing for the removal of Yasser Arafat, the denials did little to clarify President Bush's policy in the Middle East, adrift among disagreements within the administration and a general reluctance to get more deeply involved. A White House official insisted that the line remained unchanged - that Arafat was a constant source of disappointment but he was after all, the Palestinian leader. But the official added that he would call back if that policy changed in the next few hours. Policy changes have come thick and fast from an administration that - before it was forced to come to grips with the Middle East - liked to characterise itself as a granite embodiment of moral and strategic resolve.
[The complete article]


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U.S. arms sales to Israel end up in China, Iraq
Jonathan Reingold, Common Dreams, May 9, 2002

From 1990 to 2000 U.S. military aid to Israel totaled over $18 billion. No other nation in the world has such a close relationship with the U.S. military and arms industry. The UN, Amnesty International and other groups have raised questions about the extent the to which U.S. military aid is abetting human rights abuses by Israeli forces operating in the West Bank. These debates will no doubt continue for some time. In the mean time, however, there is another aspect of the American-Israeli relationship that may have an even greater impact on U.S. and Israeli security in the long run: the ongoing transfer of American arms technology from Israel to potential U.S. (and Israeli) adversaries around the globe.
[The complete article]

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This slur of anti-semitism is used to defend repression
Seumas Milne, The Guardian, May 9, 2002

Since the French revolution, the fates of the Jewish people and the left have been closely intertwined. The left's appeal to social justice and universal rights created a natural bond with a people long persecuted and excluded by the Christian European establishment.
[The complete article]

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Israel's black propaganda bid falters as documents reveal an impotent leader not a terrorist mastermind
Robert Fisk, The Independent, May 9, 2002

Israel's so-called Book of Terror designed to prove that Yasser Arafat is a master of terror involved in suicide attacks on Israel is riddled with errors, omissions and deliberate misinformation. The dossier, which was presented to President George Bush by the Israeli Prime Minister, Ariel Sharon, characterises Mr Arafat as an evil, scheming warlord funded by Iran and Saudi Arabia. But in some cases, translations of Palestinian documents allegedly seized by Israeli troops in the West Bank have been doctored to "prove" Arafat's responsibility for anti-Israeli attacks. At least one "translation" of a Palestinian document posted on the Israeli army's website is a palpable falsehood.
[The complete article]

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End the occupation
Helena Cobban, Christian Science Monitor, May 9, 2002

Amid the hoopla surrounding this week's visits to the White House by Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and Jordan's King Abdullah, Americans should remember that the 3.5 million Palestinians of the West Bank and Gaza have lived under one version or another of foreign military occupation for nearly 35 years.
[The complete article]

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A willing witness, a painful price
Brooke A. Masters, Washington Post, May 5, 2002

Alrababah, 29, says his experiences since Sept. 11 also should serve as a cautionary tale. Since he came forward voluntarily [to provide the FBI with information about the hijackers], Alrababah has spent seven months in federal custody -- almost entirely in solitary -- first as a material witness and then charged and convicted in an unrelated identification fraud case. Now, a man who is engaged to a U.S.-born citizen and who once hoped to make his life here is facing deportation as soon as he gets out of prison.
[The complete article]

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SHARON KEEPS CONGRESS IN HIS POCKET

Visiting congressmen advise Israel to resist US administration pressure
Arieh O'Sullivan, Jerusalem Post, May 6, 2002

A visiting delegation of US congressmen believes that Prime Minister Ariel Sharon should rebuff attempts by the Bush administration for him to deal with Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasser Arafat. [...] "Our message to the people of Israel is we stand behind you and behind your action. You need to defend yourselves and do
what it takes.
[The complete article]

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The war on what?
Thomas L. Friedman, New York Times, May 8, 2002

There is a broad feeling among Indonesian elites that while some of their more authoritarian neighbors, like Malaysia or Pakistan, have suddenly become the new darlings of Washington as a result of the war on terrorism, Indonesia is being orphaned because it is a messy, but real, democracy. "We sometimes fear that America's democratization agenda also got blown up with the World Trade Center," says the Indonesian writer Andreas Harsono. "Since Sept. 11 there have been so many free riders on this American antiterrorism campaign, countries that want to use it to suppress their media and press freedom and turn back the clock. Indonesia, instead of being seen as a weak democracy that needs support, gets looked at as a weak country that protects terrorists, and Malaysia is seen as superior because it arrests more terrorists than we do."
[The complete article - registration required]

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There is a solution to this filthy war - foreign occupation
Robert Fisk, The Independent, May 8, 2002

Sharon himself has now taken to blaming not just Arafat and his corrupt henchmen for the wicked suicide bombing of Israeli civilians. He now blames the Palestinians as a people. Only last month, in the Knesset, he was referring to "the murderous insanity that has taken hold of our Palestinian neighbours". If Palestinians as a people are now possessed of "murderous insanity", Mr Sharon is not going to make peace with them. And if the Palestinians have to go on watching the Jewish settlements surrounding them on their land, they are not going to make peace with Israel. And contrary to song, myth and legend, the Israeli army has been behaving more like a militia than a disciplined military force. The reports of mass looting by Israeli troops in Ramallah, especially of jewellery and cash, have reached epic proportions. Israel may publicly claim that this is Palestinian propaganda, but the Israeli army's high command knows the stories are true one officer referred to it as "the wide-scale, ugly phenomenon of vandalism".
[The complete article]

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Indecision reigns in the White House
Julian Borger, The Guardian, May 8, 2002

The rolling disaster that is this administration's Middle East policy was set in motion well over a year ago when Bush put his team together. It was clear at the outset that Powell, with his belief in multilateral solutions to global problems, was the odd man out among the likes of Rumsfeld, Cheney and Rice - who all believe that the US should embrace the leadership history has placed in its lap, and begin acting like a real superpower. Its true friends would follow. Challenged over these inherent conflicts, Bush laughed them off. The administration would be all the richer for some constructive debate, he said. That is true as long as there is someone willing to make a decision once the debate is over. That, of course, is the task of the president. That is why they give him the big office and the impressive title. But over the Middle East, the president has floundered.
[The complete article]

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Israeli soldiers who moved into West Bank cities left behind destruction and degradation
Amira Hass, Ha'aretz, May 8, 2002

In the department for the encouragement of children's art [at Palestinian Ministry of Culture], the soldiers had dirtied all the walls with gouache paints they found there and destroyed the children's paintings that hung there. In every room of the various departments - literature, film, culture for children and youth books, discs, pamphlets and documents were piled up, soiled with urine and excrement. There are two toilets on every floor, but the soldiers urinated and defecated everywhere else in the building, in several rooms of which they had lived for about a month. They did their business on the floors, in emptied flowerpots, even in drawers they had pulled out of desks.
[The complete article]

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Giving up the settlements is cheaper than you think
Akiva Eldar, Ha'aretz, May 8, 2002

In the second half of 2000, at the height of the negotiations between the Barak government and the Palestinians over a final settlement, economics professor Haim Ben-Shahar prepared a document called "A home in Israel for every settler (working title)." In his introduction, Ben-Shahar calls the document "a feasibility study for returning the settlers to the State of Israel, as they will be determined in a permanent settlement." Ben-Shahar has long been a behind-the-scenes economic adviser to Labor Party leaders, and in the past was the party's candidate for finance minister. The intifada, which came instead of a permanent settlement, convinced Ben-Shahar that fall 2000 wasn't the right time to bother Barak with a plan to evacuate the settlements. Lately, as the campaign by the Council for Peace and Security for unilateral withdrawal gathers steam, Ben-Shahar updated his plan and agreed to let it be known in public.
[The complete article]

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Clash of the uncivilized -- extremism mars world stage
Yu Bin, Pacific News Service, May 6, 2002

Sept. 11 seems to have unleashed the most uncivilized part of every major religion in the world. Extremists from every part of the world -- be they Islamic fundamentalists, Hindu revivalists, Palestinian "kamikazes," Jewish hard-liners or Christian right-wingers -- are plunging themselves into holy wars of their own definition and making. The West's reaction to these clashes has been disappointing at best. The Bush team, which effectively destroyed the Taliban with a "with-us-or-against-us" policy, has yet to demonstrate its willingness and ability to reconstruct a global village of tolerance and coexistence for all.
[The complete article]

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Congress attacks human rights
Stephen Zunes, AlterNet, May 3, 2002

On Thursday, both the House of Representative and the U.S. Senate overwhelmingly passed resolutions defending the policies of right-wing Israeli prime minister Ariel Sharon in the occupied territories. Human rights activists are alarmed, both at the strong Congressional support for a repressive military occupation as well as the fact that the resolutions are being widely interpreted as an attack on the credibility of Amnesty International and other human rights groups.
[The complete article]

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US reneges on deal for war crimes world court
David Rennie, The Telegraph, May 7, 2002

America yesterday repudiated a treaty founding the world's first permanent war crimes tribunal, claiming that the court could be used to launch politically motivated prosecutions of US servicemen or officials. [...]
US ambassadors around the world were reportedly sent cables on Sunday night, instructing them to seek written promises from their host governments never to aid the court in any action against an American citizen. Allies who refused to issue blanket exemptions for US nationals could face penalties such as the withholding of US military aid, officials said.
[The complete article]

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War on terror may extend to Cuba
Julian Borger, The Guardian, May 7, 2002

The US threatened to extend its war on terror to Cuba yesterday, accusing Fidel Castro's regime of developing biological weapons and sharing its expertise with Washington's enemies. In a speech called Beyond the Axis of Evil, the undersecretary of state John Bolton presented no evidence for his claims, pointing only to Cuba's advanced biomedical industry and Mr Castro's visits last year to three "rogue states" accused by the the US state department of sponsoring terrorism: Iraq, Syria and Libya. "States that renounce terror and abandon WMD [weapons of mass destruction] can become part of our effort," Mr Bolton said. "But those that do not can expect to become our targets."
[The complete article]

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War on civil liberties
Edward Helmore, The Guardian, May 7, 2002

As the US war on terrorism meanders on, legal questions surrounding alleged terrorists and their associates have taken on all the complexity of the war itself. Despite George Bush's and US attorney general John Ashcroft's binary world view of friend or foe, many post-September 11 detainees live in a shadow world, denied the full measure of US constitutional rights, and held in custody under a system that will neither release nor charge them.
[The complete article]

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Afghan victims deserve U.S. support
Medea Benjamin and Jason Mark, The Nation, May 6, 2002

When Congress contemplates the upcoming 2002 Supplemental Appropriations bill, there's a small item that should be added to the budget: $20 million to help the Afghan people who were mistakenly hurt during the US military campaign.

The Pentagon has not released any figures regarding the number of civilian casualties. But it appears that hundreds of Afghans--perhaps thousands--were killed by errant bombs, while others were wounded and/or had their property destroyed. There's a growing chorus both in the United States and Afghanistan calling on the US government to help these families, just as the government so compassionately helped the families who lost loved ones on September 11. By helping the Afghan civilian victims of the recent military campaign, we'll provide badly needed assistance to people living in desperate conditions, improve our image internationally and move closer toward lasting peace and security.
[The complete article]

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89 Harvard and MIT faculty urge divestment in Israel
Jenna Russell, Boston Globe, May 6, 2002

A teach-in on the campus of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology today is the latest development in an ongoing protest of Israeli policy by some MIT and Harvard University professors. About 90 faculty members at the two institutions have signed an online petition asking the schools to divest from companies doing business in Israel until its forces withdraw from occupied territories, among other conditions.
[The complete article]

Harvard or MIT faculty, students, and staff who wish to sign the petition should email harvardmitdivest@yahoo.com with the following information: name, email address, university affiliation, department or college (if applicable,) and graduation year (if applicable, otherwise, status -- staff, etc.) Please include the word "petition" in the subject line. If you are a professor, please also include the word "faculty" in the subject line.

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Gaza City: Sharon's war on the future
An eyewitness recounts Israel's military action

Benjamin Dov Granby, TomPaine.com, May 2, 2002

The recent Israeli re-occupation of Ramallah took a devastating toll not just among the upper echelon. The very institutions of the intellectual class were utterly ransacked. Christina Storm, director of Lawyers Without Borders, commented that it seemed as if the Israeli government sought to embitter any and all future peacemakers in the legal arena of educated Palestinian society.
[The complete article]

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US threat to wreck treaty system
David Teather, The Guardian, May 6, 2002

The US will today threaten to undermine the entire system of international treaties when it withdraws from plans for a court that will act as the world's first permanent war crimes tribunal. The decision is likely to provoke anger from the international community, and provide further evidence for what many see as the Bush administration's increasing unilateralism.
[The complete article]

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A mission too far
Haim Weiss, The Guardian, May 6, 2002

A captain in the Israeli Defense Force tank corps, who was once glad to serve in the Israeli army, tells his defence secretary why he will not go to the West Bank.
[The complete article]

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A U.S. cabal pulling America to war
Conn Hallinan, Foreign Policy in Focus, May 3, 2002

Sometime this fall, probably before the mid-term elections, the U.S. will probably be at war with Iraq. But why are we headed to war in the Mideast? Not because Iraq is engaged in terrorism. According to the CIA, it isn't. Not because Iraqi arms threaten our security. According to most arms inspectors, Iraq is essentially disarmed. No, it will happen because more than a decade ago a small cabal of political heavyweights in the administration of George Bush the First, who now also run the foreign and defense policy of George Bush II, sat down and drew up a blueprint to rule the world.
[The complete article]

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The new comeback kid
After years on the outside, Sharon shines brightly in Bush's Washington

Geoffrey Aronson, Los Angeles Times, May 5, 2002

Recollection of the problems that Sharon has created for Washington over the years is absent from both the institutional and personal memories of those who rule, and those who advise them. Bush has given every indication that he is content to see Sharon mold the agenda of the post-Oslo era according to his preferences, just as Clinton deferred to Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin's vision at Oslo in 1993. Even after Sharon deployed 75,000 soldiers in the West Bank, an action resulting in unprecedented ruin there, the utterly improbable word from Bush was: "I do believe Ariel Sharon is a man of peace."
[The complete article]

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THE OCCUPATION: HOW ISRAEL HAS INSTITUTIONALIZED ITS DISREGARD FOR PALESTINIAN LIVES

A bridge too far

Gideon Levy, Ha'aretz, May 5, 2002

The Palestinians are imprisoned in their towns and villages in such a way as to render movement from one place to another, even to save lives, impossible. In such a manner, Israel is again managing their lives and deaths. The semblance of Palestinian sovereignty has vanished and the few civil spheres that had been transferred to the Palestinians' control have been taken back.
[The complete article]

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Sharon the merciless and Arafat the corrupt have nothing meaningful to offer each other
Robert Fisk, The Independent, May 4, 2002

Self-delusion has crossed the Atlantic. George Bush is having visions again just as he did before the most recent bloodbath in Israel and Palestine and Colin Powell, whose latest Middle East mission was a wholesale disaster, wants to devise "a set of principles" for an Arab-Israeli peace. And, as usual, it is the occupied, not the occupier, who is warned this is the "last chance" for peace.
[The complete article]

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