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M i d e a s t Newsstand

Month: July, 2015

Saudi Arabia’s New Sunni Alliance – Hussein Ibish/The New York Times

by NewsStand

OCCUPIED WASHINGTON — If the Iran nuclear deal was an earthquake shaking the Middle East’s strategic landscape, one of the most dramatic aftershocks was the surprising arrival last month in Saudi Arabia of a high-level delegation from Hamas. The visit by the Islamist organization that rules Gaza is the latest sign of an about-face in Saudi policy, which is now seeking a rapprochement with the regional Muslim Brotherhood movement, to which Hamas belongs.

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Sheldon Adelson Recruits NBA To Fight BDS Movement – Kit O’Connell/MintPress

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 Kings’ DeMarcus Cousins, Omri Casspi get muddy in the Dead Sea /Photo: Sacramento Bee-Twitter

Supporters of Israel are pouring millions into opposing the growing success of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement.

MINNEAPOLIS — A delegation of eight professional basketball players visited Israel earlier this month. Yet this was no simple sightseeing visit: Multiple reports suggest the trip was part of a renewed, multimillion dollar effort to oppose the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement.
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Turkey In Danger of Civil War – Thierry Meyssan/Voltairenet.org

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While the Western Press salutes the authorisation given by Turkey to the United States, allowing the US to use its military bases in order to fight Daesh, Thierry Meyssan looks at the nation’s internal tensions. In his view, maintaining Mr. Erdoğan in power, as well as the lack of a new majority during the next general elections, will rapidly lead to civil war.

For the last fifteen years, George Friedman, the founder of the private intelligence company Stratfor, has been persuading Western leaders that the BRICS will play no important rôle in the 21st century, but that an Islamic Turkey will [1]. Friedman is an ex-collaborator of Andrew Marshall, the Pentagon strategist between 1973 and 2015 [2].
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Alliance Flux in the Middle East – Paul R. Pillar/The National Interest Blog

by NewsStand

Some recent policy decisions by Middle Eastern governments have the potential to shake up regional alignments, or what are widely perceived to be alignments. In the near term this will have little to do with the Iran nuclear agreement, despite the attention the agreement is getting at the moment. That accord will not lead to realignments as great as its opponents fear, and its larger impact on regional diplomacy will be gradual and only slightly apparent in the near term.

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Jesus Was A Palestinian Part 2: And Jesus Wept – Kathrine Frisk/Veterans Today

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jesus-palestinian4

This is a further elaboration on: Jesus Was A Palestinian.The Old Testament reflects the New Testament. There is no inconsistency. No confusion. It is clear. There is no cognitive dissonance. There is no misinterpretation or misunderstanding.

Names and blood lines and essentially the naming of the firstborn. Which is the thread that runs through it all, like an underground stream through time.
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Liberation Operations in Western Palmyra

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*Jewish Daesh Settlers Burn West Bank Palesnian Baby Alive (Sunday Updates Indluded) – AFP

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OCCUPIED Nablus (WB) – An 18-month-old Palestinian baby died and its parents were injured in a fire started by Israeli settlers in the West Bank, Palestinian security officials said Friday.

Israeli Defence Minister Moshe Yaalon labelled the attack an “act of terrorism.”
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5 Broken Cameras

by NewsStand

A Palestinian Emad records his village’s resistance to the encroachment of Israeli settlements.

Amreeka

by NewsStand

A vivacious Palestinian woman and her teenage son  cope with culture clash and more as they try to build a new life in rural Illinois.

*Recommended Viewing

 

How Israel’s Wars Hurt Diaspora Jews – J J. Goldberg/Forward.com

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The Israeli cabinet held a special session June 28, dedicated to one of its least-known and potentially most fraught rituals: the annual briefing on the current state of Jewish life worldwide. It’s presented each spring by a semi-official Jerusalem think tank that monitors Israel-Diaspora relations, the Jewish People Policy Institute .

Some of what they talked about might surprise you. What they didn’t talk about might shock you.
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UN Resolution: Israel the World’s Only Violator of Economic and Social Rights – Global Research

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The UN’s 54-nation Economic and Social Council adopted a resolution on Monday that names the world’s only – only – violator of economic and social rights in the world, UN Watch reports. Which country did a majority of 42 states including all EU members condemn? If you guessed Iran, Syria, Russia, Saudi Arabia, or any other likely candidate, then you haven’t been paying attention to world affairs or the United Nations since the establishment of the nation of Israel.

That’s right, Israel.
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Paid Hasbara Brigade Busted On Reddit

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Lenora Avraham is a ‘Casbara’ – that’s a captain of a hasbarat brigade.  Casbara is Lenora’s rank.  ‘Casbara’ has just been coined by yours truly so as to distinguish between the ziobot zombies: hasbarats, and their deranged cell leaders ‘Casbarats’.  Well, we often talk about the vile hasbarats –  and here now is our chance to look into the viler Casbarats.

Here below, folks, is the story behind Lenora Avraham getting busted for insidious Casbara activities  on reddit- I encourage you to read through ALL THREE links to get the fuller picture and nuance:

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DOUBLE ARTICLE: Al Aqsa “Dangerous Escalations” – Reuters and AFP

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Arab ministers to meet after Jerusalem clashes: “dangerous escalations” – AFP

Cairo – Arab League foreign ministers will meet in Cairo early next month to discuss clashes involving Israeli police at the Al-Aqsa mosque compound in Jerusalem, a senior Palestinian official said Monday.

Sunday’s incident saw Israeli police enter the mosque, one of Islam’s holiest sites, as they clashed with Palestinians angered by Jews’ access to the compound on an annual day of Jewish mourning.
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Tough times strike Saudi Arabia’s millionaires – Yahoo Finance

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Turmoil in the Middle East, an unimpressive international stock market debut and tumbling oil prices will hit the wealth of Saudi Arabia’s richest in years to come, according to a new report from WealthInsight.

Over the next five years, more Saudis will become U.S. dollar-millionaires, but the rate of increase will slow to 12.4 percent, less than half the steep 25 percent rate seen between 2010 and 2015, said the research firm.

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Turkey and U.S. Plan to Create Syria ‘Safe Zone’ Free of ISIS – The New York Times

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BAGHDADTurkey and the United States have agreed in general terms on a plan that envisions American warplanes, Syrian insurgents and Turkish forces working together to sweep Islamic State militants from a 60-mile-long strip of northern Syria along the Turkish border, American and Turkish officials say.

The plan would create what officials from both countries are calling an Islamic State-free zone controlled by relatively moderate Syrian insurgents, which the Turks say could also be a “safe zone” for displaced Syrians.

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Anti-Defamation League: Huckabee ‘completely out of line’ – CNNPolitics.com

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The Anti-Defamation League, a prominent Jewish advocacy group, slammed former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee’s comments Sunday that Obama is marching Israelis to “the door of the oven” by agreeing to the Iran nuclear deal.
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Camping versus Blogging

by Taxi

Dear Readers and Friends,

Tomorrow  I’ll be going camping for a couple of days with friends and dogs – there is no internet connection in the wilds of the ceder mountains where I’m heading so there will be no new activities on Platos till later on in the week.

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Iranian leader tweets graphic of Obama with gun to head – USAToday

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Iran’s supreme leader tweeted a graphic Saturday that appears to depict President Obama holding a gun to his head as Britain relaxed its travel advice to the nation, citing decreased hostility under the Iranian government.

“US president has said he could knock out Iran’s military. We welcome no war, nor do we initiate any war, but..” reads the caption above the tweet sent by Ayatollah Ali Khamenei on @khamenei_ir, his English language account.
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Obama, “Hollywood Jews” Targeted by Posters in L.A. at Anti-Iran Deal Rally – Hollywood Reporter

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Street artist Sabo tells THR that the event’s organizers asked him to remove the incendiary signs, but he refused.

Hollywood’s conservative nemesis has struck again.

Street artist Sabo papered the area around the Federal Building in Los Angeles early Sunday in preparation for a 2 p.m. PT Iran nuke deal protest, organized by Stop Iran Rally.
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Russia revises navy doctrine over NATO’s ‘inadmissible’ expansion – AFP

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Moscow – Russia aims to boost the strategic positions of its navy on the Black Sea and seek to maintain an Atlantic and Mediterranean presence, according its latest naval doctrine which has been revised over NATO’s “inadmissible” expansion.

Published Sunday on the Kremlin website, an updated version of the Russian Navy’s doctrine came half a year after a revised military doctrine that dramatically reflected deteriorating relations with the West.
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Q&A: ‘It is possible to break the Israeli occupation’ – Liam OHare/Al Jazeera English

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Palestinian Khader Adnan speaks with Al Jazeera about his recent release from Israeli jail after a 56-day hunger strike.

Jerusalem – Khader Adnan has become a symbol of the Palestinian resistance to occupation.

On 10 separate occasions, he has been placed in administrative detention, a practice that allows Israel to detain prisoners without charge for renewable six-month periods. In 2012, he rose to prominence after waging a 66-day hunger strike against his detention, and after his rearrest last year, Adnan embarked upon another 56-day hunger strike that ended in his release on July 12.
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Israel Auctions Its Military-Industrial Complex: How Much Is It Worth? — The Motley Fool

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Israel’s premier tank-builder is going on sale. An American company should buy it.

“In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex.”–President Dwight D. Eisenhower

Once upon a time, President Eisenhower warned us to beware the possibility of the military-industrial complex acquiring too strong a hold over America. But what about us acquiring a piece of the military-industrial complex for ourselves?
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Jesus Was A Palestinian – Katherine Fisk/Veterans Today

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I am going to tell you straight off the bat that Jesus was not the King of the Jews, he was not the son of David and he was not from the tribe of Judah. And then I am going to prove it to you.

If Jesus was alive today he would be living in Nabulus, he would be shot at regularly and by now would most probably have spent time in prison and under some form of torture.
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NATO and The West Just Became Irrelevant – Jim W. Dean/Veterans Today

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What the gangster strategists in the West claimed to fear from the East, they are just making it happen faster and bigger. Duhhh!!

[ Editors note: William Engdahl reminds us about the economic growth potential of the new silk road, centered around global alternative banking partnerships and the strong international security alliances being created by it.

He alerts us to the state of the art defensive capabilities that are being engineered into the high-speed rail network that crisscrosses Russia and Eurasia, and it would be interesting to have more information on this.

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Israel Is Steadfast in Criticism of Nuclear Deal – Michael R. Gordon/The New York Times

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OCCUPIED WASHINGTON — In a stern response to Secretary of State John Kerry’s recent comments on the Iran nuclear accord, an Israeli official said Saturday that Israel would continue to criticize the agreement and could not be pressured to stop voicing its objections.

In remarks on Friday, Mr. Kerry warned that the international community might blame Israel if Congress blocked the accord and that as a result Israel might “wind up being more isolated.”
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Omar

by NewsStand

Sunday Movie From Palestine:

Arrested after the death of an Israeli soldier, a Palestinian baker (Adam Bakri) agrees to work as an informant, but his true motives and alliances remain hidden.

Europe’s Arab-Israeli Meddling Will Get Nowhere Fast – Elliott Abrams/Newswek

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Syria is coming apart and there are millions of Syrian refugees in Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey. ISIS threatens Syria, Jordan, Lebanon and Iraq—the latter of which is also coming apart.

The new Iran nuclear deal would deliver $150 billion in cash to the Islamic Republic of Iran, and the removal of sanctions would bring even more money to the Revolutionary Guards. ISIS and other jihadis are increasingly active in Sinai. Hamas has a firm grip on Gaza.
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Barrel Bombing Us All – Gordon Duff/ Veterans Today

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Here is a fair question, why discuss barrel bombs at all? It is clear to anyone who pays attention to world news that President Assad of Syria is using old oil drums filled with caustic chemicals to wipe out his entire population.

No western paper, no Russian news bureau, no Arab network of news website has challenged this “fact” so often reported, in all cases at the hands of the Syrian Human Rights Observatory, a CIA “sockpuppet” front.

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Netanyahu and Iran: Prophet of Doom, Not Leadership – Natan B. Sachs/Newsweek

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Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is, today, doing what he genuinely excels at: warning against the dire consequences of a policy to which he vehemently objects. And there is much to warn about in the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JPOA), the deal which places a moratorium on most of Iran’s nuclear progress in exchange for sweeping relief of sanctions.

At the same time, Netanyahu is failing to do what he genuinely does not excel at: affecting change in the world to better Israel’s position.
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Hamas armed wing gives 25,000 Gazans combat training – AFP

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Gaza City (Palestinian Territories) – The military wing of Hamas opened its Gaza summer camp on Saturday, aimed at providing basic combat training for 25,000 Palestinians in the embattled strip.

Hamas, the de facto power in Gaza, is currently engaged in indirect contacts with Israel to try to reach a long-term truce, but a year after last summer’s devastating 50-day war the militant movement has kept up the fighting talk.
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