How Israel is turning Gaza into a super-max prison

How Israel is turning Gaza into a super-max prison


Palestinians walk under the minaret of a destroyed mosque in Gaza. Israel not only are profiting from the reconstruction but also turning the territory into a super-maximum prison. Photo: Mohammed Saber / EPA

According to the United Nations, 100,000 homes have been destroyed or damaged, leaving 600,000 Palestinians – nearly one in three of Gaza’s population – homeless or in urgent need of humanitarian help.

Roads, schools and the electricity plant to power water and sewerage systems are in ruins. The cold and wet of winter are approaching. Aid agency Oxfam warns that at the current rate of progress it may take 50 years to rebuild Gaza.

Where else in the world apart from the Palestinian territories would the international community stand by idly as so many people suffer – and not from a random act of God but willed by fellow humans?

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Under cover of reconstruction, UN and PA become enforcers of Israel’s Gaza siege

[Among the more cynical acts of “humanitarian imperialism” is the invention of this “relief” program for the further humiliation and victimization of the Gazan victims of imperialism and Zionism. — Frontlines ed.]
10/17/2014

http://electronicintifada.net/blogs/ali-abunimah/under-cover-reconstruction-un-and-pa-become-enforcers-israels-gaza-siege

Details given in a confidential briefing this week confirm that the UN has agreed to become the chief enforcer of Israel’s ongoing siege of Gaza.

Under the guise of reconstruction, the UN will be monitoring and gathering private information about Palestinian households to be passed onto Israel, which will have a veto over which families get aid to rebuild their homes.

This was presented as part of an effort to try to entrench and legitimize the Israeli-backed Ramallah-based Palestinian Authority of Mahmoud Abbas in Gaza.
Under the arrangements, Israel will be given even more intrusive control over the lives of Palestinians in Gaza, who will be subjected to onerous ongoing monitoring as they try to rebuild their houses, communities and lives following Israel’s summer massacre.

UN agencies estimate that almost 90,000 homes must be rebuilt, in addition to hundreds of schools and other major infrastructure systematically destroyed in Israel’s attack, or degraded by years of blockade.

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Mindanao: “MILF hails UN, EU, UK, US, other states’ support”

http://www.luwaran.com

October 11, 2012 — The Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) today said the support of the international community for the recent breakthrough in the GPH-MILF peace process has been overwhelming as it expressed gratitude to world leaders and foreign envoys who have welcomed the Framework Agreement reached between the Government of the Philippines and the (GPH) and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF).

MILF Chairman Al Haj Murad Ebrahim has hailed with great satisfaction and utmost gratitude these expressions of support from the United Nations, The European Union, Malaysia, The United Kingdom, Japan, United States Australia, Switzerland, and Indonesia.

“We are deeply honored and humbled, and assured by their support,” Murad told Luwaran in an interview this morning.

Murad particularly took note of the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon commendation of President Benigno Aquino III for his vision and courage, as well as the commitment of the MILF leadership, in reaching the landmark agreement. Continue reading

Julian Assange Addresses UN General Assembly – Full Video and Transcript

[In a bold new move to bring his case, Wikileaks, and the case of accused whistleblower and political prisoner Bradley Manning, to the United Nations, Julian Assange has delivered this electronic media.  While he addresses special appeals to President Obama, which will fall on deaf imperialist ears as usual, his arguments will undoubtedly gain renewed circulation and support among activists and people internationally.  —  Frontlines ed.]

Sep 26, 2012 by  Russia Today

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange addressed permanent representatives to the United Nations (UN) General Assembly at a high-level talk on the legal and ethical legitimacy of diplomatic asylum. Assange’s address, which was made from inside the Ecuadorian Embassy in London via live stream to the UN on September 26, was broadcast live and exclusively by Russia Today (RT).

Transcript

Transcript of Julian Assange’s Address to the UN on Human Rights – given on Wednesday 26th September – Proofed from live speech. Continue reading

India: “…1.8 million victims of police torture and violence every year…”

India’s record on custodial torture dismal

Anahita Mukherji | The Times of India | June 28, 2012

NEW DELHI: The Torture Convention was adopted by the General Assembly of the United Nations on 10 December 1984 (resolution 39/46) and it came into force on 26 June 1987 after being ratified by 20 nations. The Torture Convention completed 25 years of its presence earlier this week and it’s an opportune moment for India to introspect on its dismal track record of custodial torture.

According to a recent report on human rights in India, a study of 47 districts over a period of more than two years shows that on an average 1.8 million people are victims of police torture and violence in India every year . The release of the report, prepared by the Working Group on Human Rights in India and the UN (WGHR), a coalition of human rights bodies, coincided with India’s Universal Periodic Review on human rights at the United Nations.

The report cites data released by the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), which reported an average of 43 deaths in police or prison custody every day in the decade 2001 to 2010. “These figures represent only a fraction of the actual number of deaths in custody as they reflect only the cases registered before the NHRC,” says the WGHR report.

The report points to the widespread and routine use of torture in conflict areas, leading to both physical and mental disabilities as well as impotence. “Common methods of torture in Kashmir and the North-East include assault, placement of an iron rod on the legs on which many people sit, placement of a burning stove between the legs and administration of electric shocks to the genitals,” adds the report. Continue reading

178 International Decisions in Condemnation of Israel’s Mistreatment of Palestinian Prisoners

[This report not only details the widespread and long-standing recognition of the Israeli policies and practices on torture of Palestinian prisoners; it also reveals the inability and unwillingness of international agencies to address and solve these serious violations of human rights by the Israeli regime.  It remains to the revolutionary people themselves to bring liberation and justice to the long-suffering people of Palestine. — Frontlines ed.]

——–

Friday, 22 June 2012
http://english.pnn.ps/index.php/prisoners/2004-178-international-decisions-in-condemnation-of-israels-mistreatment-of-palestinian-prisoners

The 26th of June marks the anniversary of the International Day against Torture.

A report recently issued by Detainees and Ex-Detainees Society revealed that torturing Palestinian prisoners and humiliating them have become a form of ethical and legal corruption practiced by the Israeli occupation authorities.

The report also said that in the past few years, torturing prisoners has become a means for humiliating prisoners and depriving them of their humanity and dignity, and not a for interrogation purposes.

This is shown through pictures published by Israeli soldiers that show the soldiers both male and female posing with prisoners who are handcuffed and blindfolded in disgraceful positions, while the soldiers appear happy and proud of their handwork. Continue reading

On the 10th Anniversary of the World Conference Against Racism in Durban, South Africa

23 September 2011

MEDIA ADVISORY from US Human Rights Network

Former UN Assistant Secretary General for the Center Against Apartheid, E.S. Reddy, opens the Durban +10 Coalition program on the 10th Anniversary of the Durban Declaration and Programme of Action (DDPA).

 New York City – The Durban +10 Coalition, convened by the US Human Rights Network (USHRN) and World Against Racism Network (WARN), ran its grassroots anti-racist program in NYC from September 19-21, 2011. The program opened with the words of E. S. Reddy, former UN Assistant Secretary General for the Center Against Apartheid:

We are not looking to persuade Western governments that ending racism is to their advantage. These governments and the corporations that they support and are supported by profit from global racism. We want to communicate to them that this is a war – a war for our basic human rights and dignity. We want to work with students and communities to raise hell, we want to go to local and state governments and raise hell, and we want to raise hell on national and international levels as well.

Indeed, the execution of Troy Davis on the eve of the anniversary of the DDPA nonetheless, could be read as a blatant exercise of white supremacy by sectors of the US government – an unapologetic willingness to continue its long history of institutionalized racism.

In the words of Mireille Fanon-Mendes, of the Frantz Fanon Foundation and Member of the UN Working Group of Experts on People of African Descent and daughter of Algerian revolutionary and famed author Frantz Fanon:

Human rights law should be an instrument of transformation. The law is transformed by how it is used and interpreted. How can we move the law? The law is between our hands, it is not in the hands of the State alone. Continue reading

UN to reduce its occupation force in Haiti

MINUSTAH has more than 8,700 soldiers and 3,500 police in the French-speaking Caribbean country. Its mandate expires October 15.

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti, Monday September 19, 2011 – UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has announced plans to discuss with the Haitian government, the gradual reduction of MINUSTAH’s peacekeeping force in the country.

This follows violent protests about a sexual assault on an 18 year old resident, allegedly by five Uruguayan peacekeepers who left the country on Friday.

In a broadcast, Ban apologized for the incident, which he termed “totally unacceptable.”

While he praised MINUSTAH’s contribution to the country since 2004, he said he also understands the frustrations of the Haitian people. Continue reading

Israel’s treatment of Palestinians to dominate UN racism conference

9 September 2011

The September meeting is the third review conference of the Durban Declaration; the second was held in Geneva in 2009.

UNITED NATIONS, (IPS) – A high-level UN meeting on racism, scheduled to take place later this month, looks set to be dominated by questions relating to Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians.

Expressing fears that the meeting might turn out to be anti-Israel, several Western states, including Canada, Germany, the United States, Italy, Austria, the Netherlands, the Czech Republic and Australia, have indicated they will not participate.

The boycott is the result of an intense campaign by Israel, which has branded the meeting “anti-Semitic” even before it could get off the ground.

Still, an overwhelming majority of the UN’s 193 member states — along with dozens of human rights activists and organizations — are expected to actively participate in the meeting, scheduled to take place on 22 September during the 66th session of the UN’s General Assembly. Continue reading

Palestinian Youth Movement: ‘oppose the attempt to impose a false peace in false borders’

Statement on the September 2011
Declaration of Statehood

We, in the Palestinian Youth Movement (PYM), stand steadfastly against the proposal for Palestinian statehood recognition based on 1967 borders that is to be presented to the United Nations this September by the Palestinian official leadership. We believe and affirm that the statehood declaration only seeks the completion of the normalization process, which began with faulty peace agreements. The initiative does not recognize nor address that our people continue to live within a settler colonial regime premised on the ethnic cleansing of our land and subordination and exploitation of our people.

This declaration serves as a mechanism for rescuing the faulty peace framework and depoliticizing the struggle for Palestine by removing the struggle from its historical colonial context. The attempts to impose a false peace with the normalizing of the colonial regime has only led us to surrender increasing amounts of our land, the rights of our people, and our aspirations by delegitimizing and marginalizing our people’s struggle and deepening the fragmentation and division of our people. This declaration jeopardizes the rights and aspirations of over two-thirds of the Palestinian people who live as refugees in countries of refuge and in exile, to return to their original homes from which they were displaced in the 1948 Nakba (Catastrophe) and subsequently since then. It also jeopardizes the position of the Palestinians residing in the 1948 occupied territories who continue to resist daily against the ethnic cleansing and racial practices from inside the colonial regime. Furthermore, it corroborates and empowers its Palestinian and Arab partners to act as the gatekeepers to the occupation and the colonization of the region within a neo-colonial framework.

The foundation of this process serves as nothing more than to ensure the continuity of negotiations, economic and social normalization, and security cooperation. The state declaration will solidify falsified borders on only a sliver of historic Palestine and still does not address the most fundamental issues: Jerusalem, settlements, refugees, political prisoners, occupation, borders and resource control. We believe such a state declaration will not ensure nor promote justice and freedom for Palestinians, which inherently means there will be no sustainable peace in the region. Continue reading

Nepal: Bhattarai to visit US, UN, India

[Sealing deals and consolidating relations with imperialism and Indian hegemonists, Bhattarai sets agenda. — Frontlines ed.]

New Nepal PM to visit India, sidestepping controversy

By Sudeshna Sarkar, Kathmandu, Sep 7 : Nepal’s new prime minister, Jawaharlal Nehru University scholar Baburam Bhattarai, will visit India after attending a UN meet in New York this month, thereby sidestepping the old controversy about Nepali premiers’ first foreign trip after assuming office.

The 57-year-old architect, who took oath of office last month, Wednesday received the Indian ambassador to Nepal, Jayant Prasad, to discuss his first official visit to India after becoming Nepal’s new premier.

The nearly one and a half hour meeting, the first between the Indian envoy and Bhattarai, was also attended by the latter’s wife, senior Maoist leader and former minister Hisila Yami, who confirmed the India visit.

Yami told journalists that Bhattarai will visit New Delhi on the invitation of his Indian counterpart, Manmohan Singh, after attending the 66th UN General Assembly in New York. Continue reading

Haiti: Under the gauze of “humanitarianism”, US-led imperialists suppressed democracy


WikiLeaks Haiti: The Aristide Files

Kim Ives and Ansel Herz in The Nation | August 5, 2011

US officials led a far-reaching international campaign aimed at keeping former Haitian President Jean-Bertrand Aristide exiled in South Africa, rendering him a virtual prisoner there for the last seven years, according to secret US State Department cables.

The cables show that high-level US and UN officials even discussed a politically motivated prosecution of Aristide to prevent him from “gaining more traction with the Haitian population and returning to Haiti.”

The secret cables, made available to the Haitian weekly newspaper Haïti Liberté by WikiLeaks, show how the political defeat of Aristide and his Lavalas movement has been the central pillar of US policy toward the Caribbean nation over the last two US administrations, even though—or perhaps because—US officials understood that he was the most popular political figure in Haiti.

They also reveal how US officials and their diplomatic counterparts from France, Canada, the UN and the Vatican tried to vilify and ostracize the Haitian political leader. Continue reading

Ten years since the WCAR in Durban: Activists still press for an end to racism and xenophobia

July 29, 2011

DURBAN + 10 COALITION: A Peoples and NGO Initiative to Commemorate the 10th Anniversary of the Durban Declaration and Programme of Action

To honor the 10th anniversary of the adoption of the Durban Declaration and Programme of Action at the United Nations World Conference Against Racism held in Durban, South Africa, and to continue the global fight against racism and xenophobia, a broad alliance of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) from the United States and worldwide have joined together to form the Durban + 10 Coalition.

The Durban +10 Coalition strongly welcomes the UN General Assembly holding of a High Level meeting at the level of heads of state and government to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the adoption of the Durban Declaration and Programme of Action (DDPA) on Thursday, September 22nd, 2011, with the theme “Victims of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance: recognition, justice and development.”

The Durban + 10 Coalition unequivocally supports and embraces the advances embodied in the DDPA, and is dedicated to ensuring that the DDPA remains the cornerstone of the UN’s program to combat racism. We see the DDPA as central to pressuring the governments of the world to adopt and thoroughly implement national plans of action to eradicate racial discrimination, inequity, colonialism, xenophobia and related intolerances. We further stand opposed to the slander and sabotage against the DDPA and 10th anniversary spearheaded by the United States, Canada, Israel and several members of the European Union, particularly Italy, the Netherlands, and the Czech Republic, to suppress the rights and demands of the many groups protected by the DDPA, including Migrants, Indigenous Peoples, African and African descendant peoples for restitution and reparations and those of the Palestinian people for self-determination. Continue reading

Haiti Before and After Aristide’s Return

Counterpunch, April 11, 2011

by Robert Roth

On April 4th, Haiti’s electoral council announced that, according to preliminary results, Michel Martelly had been selected Haiti’s new president. A kompa singer and long-time proponent of Jean-Claude Duvalier, Martelly worked with the dreaded FRAPH death squads that killed over 5000 people in Haiti after the first coup against President Jean- Bertrand Aristide in 1991. Martelly supporters had announced they would “burn down the country” if he were not selected.   Only a small number of Haitians – around 20% by most estimates – voted in the elections, the smallest percentage in 60 years to participate in any presidential elections in  the Americas. Fanmi Lavalas, the party of Aristide and by far the most popular in Haiti, was banned from participation. Why should people vote? It was a “selection,” not an “election,” we were told over and over again. By the second round on March 20th, Haitians had to choose between Martelly or Mirlande Manigat, a right-wing member of Haiti’s tiny elite. One Haitian friend told us, “This is a choice between cholera and typhoid. You cannot make such a choice.”

Yet the bitter taste of the dismal elections could not diminish the joy of “the return.” As the plane carrying President Aristide and his family back from a 7-year forced exile in South Africa approached the Port-au-Prince airport on March 18th, there were about 50 of us in the inner courtyard of his home. A day before, we had watched quietly as dozens of Haitians methodically painted walls, swept the same floors over and over again to make sure they were spotless, and fixed any last remnant of the destruction that took place at this house after the coup on February 29, 2004.

We had heard that President Aristide (called Titid throughout Haiti) would arrive at  the airport around noon, but we had gone to the house earlier to avoid the crush. I had come with a dear friend, Pierre Labossiere, representing the work of the Haiti Action Committee. We were both honored and overwhelmed to be there. Continue reading

Nepal: UNMIN exits, India enters

by Mohan Nepali for Public Journalism

January 18, 2011

Re-affirming that Nepal’s power-mongering politicians have long been accepting Indian political intervention in the country, Indian Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao has arrived in Kathmandu with a clearly stated purpose of representing the Indian role in forming a government in Nepal.

India has apparently sent her to make sure the Indian role would redouble in Nepal after the exit of the UN Mission to Nepal (UNMIN) from Nepal’s peace process monitoring and reporting role three days ago.

The visit is reported to have been concerned with quarrels among Nepali political parties and their intra-party feuds. Continue reading