Beyond the Gaza Blockade

Gaza: Beyond the Blockade
by TRNN
It has been almost four weeks since Israel decided to completely seal the borders of the Gaza Strip. While Israel has maintained a partial blockade ever since Hamas took power in June of 2007, this is the first time that the Israeli government has elected to stop foreign journalists from entering the Palestinian territory. On Monday, a small number of trucks bringing much-needed fuel and other supplies were permitted to enter for the first time since the full blockade began on November 5th, but within hours the gates had been sealed shut once again in response to rocket fire emanating from inside Gaza. In our conversation with Sameh Habeeb, via phone from inside Gaza City, we hear first hand of the devastating influence that the blockade is having on the lives of those trapped inside the Gaza Strip.
 
 

Sameh Habeeb reports on the humanitarian crisis taking place inside Gaza's sealed borders
 

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Gen-Next: Sowing the Dragon's Teeth in Gaza

Gen-Next: Sowing the Dragon's Teeth in Gaza
by C. L. Cook
Despite serial misinformation campaigns by first Israel, then its defenders in the western corporate and State media, millions around the world are witnessing what it means to be a supporter of the new state of affairs throughout the middle east. It means: countenancing the random destruction of lives in their thousands; abandoning the principle of innocence, and; surrendering regret upon the steely altar of a scorched-earth realpolitik that takes no prisoners.

But above all, as witnessed over Christmas week, it means supporting the actions of the Israeli war machine, as we outside are told the majority of Israel's citizens do, (Arab-Israeli citizens presumably excluded the poll) and embracing lies as truth, shadow as light, black as white. This the media, the networks and FOX has proven ever willing to do, but State broadcasters in Britain, Canada, and Australia too unquestioningly take the Israeli Defence Force line and in turn propagate its message to their respective home viewers.

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Where Ways Intersect: The Profitable World of Spooks and Narco Traffickers

The Secret and (Very) Profitable World of Intelligence and Narcotrafficking
by Tom Burghardt
When Afghan drug kingpin Haji Bashir Noorzai was arrested in New York in 2005, it set off a chain of events that continue to echo today. A federal jury in Manhattan convicted Noorzai September 22, for his involvement in an international narcotics trafficking conspiracy that sold tens of millions of dollars of heroin on world markets. The drug lord now faces life in prison and will be sentenced on January 7.
 
But things aren't always what they seem. Noorzai, described by federal investigators and journalists as "the richest man in Afghanistan," enjoyed close and cosy relations with the Taliban's top leader Mullah Omar, al-Qaeda and Pakistan's Inter Service Intelligence agency (ISI). Indeed, Noorzai had become one of the capo tutti capos of Afghanistan's flourishing heroin rackets and profited handsomely from the protection of his Taliban "friends," his ISI mentors and allegedly the CIA.

The Washington Post reported December 27, that Noorzai's New York arrest was aided by a private security outfit, Rosetta Research and Consulting, a firm founded in 2003 by two "businessmen" which the Post refuses to name "because of the sensitive nature of their undercover work."

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The "Fort Dix Five"

America's War On Islam - The "Fort Dix Five"
by Stephen Lendman
With world eyes on Gaza, the horrific carnage on the ground, innocent civilians being slaughtered, Israel's grievous crimes of war and against humanity, and its slow-motion genocide gaining speed, it's easy to forget America's war at home on Islam and its growing number of victims. This article highlights five recent ones - innocent young Muslim men called the "Fort Dix Five."

On December 22, The New York Times headlined: "5 Are Convicted of Conspiring to Attack Fort Dix" in reporting that a federal jury "convicted five men of conspiring to kill American soldiers at (the base) last year, but acquitted them of attempted murder."

After an eight-week trial, jurors deliberated for six days before returning a verdict. "The men, all Muslim immigrants (from) South Jersey or Philadelphia, face a maximum term of life in prison."
 
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Sentencing is scheduled for April 22 for three defendants and April 23 for the others. Even The New York Times admitted that the "five defendants seemed (more like) South Jersey than seething jihadists" - based on their backgrounds, employment, normal activities, and trial evidence showing nothing out of the ordinary.

It's the latest example of post-9/11 witch-hunt justice against innocent Muslim victims - targeted for their faith, ethnicity, activism, prominence, benevolent charity, or whatever other motives the administration concocts for political advantage. As a result, growing numbers fill federal prisons for being Muslim at the wrong time in America. The "war on terror" is a jihad against them. Muslims everywhere are at risk. So are we all, and that won't change under Obama.

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New Grounds for a New Opposition

JUDGING OBAMA: GROUNDS FOR A NEW OPPOSITION
by Jack Random
Never has a nation, its people or indeed the nations and people of the world waited so anxiously for the coronation of a new president.  After eight years of the serial catastrophe known as the Bush administration, there has never been greater hope for real and substantial change.  After eight years of muted at best media criticism of the morally bankrupt and inept policies of the worst government in American history, rarely has there been so much criticism based on so little substance.  

Now, as the world’s attention is drawn to the tragic assault on Palestinian Gaza, where thousands of civilians are caught in the crossfire of an ancient conflict, we are reminded that events will not wait for new leadership.  Indeed, it is entirely possible that Israel’s aggressive action was initiated now in anticipation that the next American administration might not be so eager to approve.  While that possibility gives hope that the new president will at long last embrace some semblance of neutrality in Middle East policy, we are reminded as well that Obama was forced to retreat on his statement of empathy for the Palestinian cause by the powerful Israeli-American political lobby.  
 
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Holding Corporate Toes to the Fire

Holding Corporations Accountable
by corpwatch.org
CorpWatch's vision is to promote human, environmental and worker rights at the local, national and global levels by making corporate practices more transparent and holding corporations accountable for their actions. During 2009 we will continue a special focus on building our new and innovative wiki web site, www.Crocody.org, Collaborative Research On Corporations.
Crocodyl is an evolving online compendium of critical corporate research, tracking the accountability records of the world's largest multinationals.
 
 
 
A global North-South project and resource,  are currently honing in on financial and extractive industry companies:

AIG
http://www.crocodyl.org/wiki/american_international_group_aig

Countrywide Financial
http://www.crocodyl.org/wiki/countrywide_financial_subsidiary_of_bank_of_america

Citigroup
http://www.crocodyl.org/wiki/citigroup

CVRD (Vale)
http://www.crocodyl.org/wiki/cvrd_vale

Xstrata
http://www.crocodyl.org/wiki/xstrata

Anglo American
http://www.crocodyl.org/wiki/anglo_american_plc


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Gaza: New Year Received in Blood

Day 5 of Israeli War On Gaza: Report direct from Gaza 31 December 2008: 400 death toll to date; wounded 2000
by Sameh A. Habeeb
Gaza Strip December 31, 2008 - Three hours later, a new happy year would be starting for the rest of the world. Palestinians in Gaza would receive it with blood, sadness and bombings.  It seems Israeli air force, naval forces, rockets, shells would share them a high-tech bloody fireworks. War on the Gaza Strip continues raising casualties and effects in both sides.  Bombings, rockets, heavy missiles of Apachi and F16s tear down many targets across the besieged strip.  The number of victims still dramatically raising.

Many calls raised for a ceasefire. The Islamist Hamas Movement expressed its readiness for a truce in return of lifting siege and ending the recent launched War. The Hamas stance was conveyed to Russia which is trying to play role to end this War.  Lately in Tuesday, Israel refused a French suggestion of 48-hour-truce.

Israeli Television said that troops would enter Gaza n Friday to pursue the ongoing War. Meanwhile, Hamas Primer, Ismail  Hanya,  said that Israli war on Gaza is against Arab, Islamic and free civilized countries.
 
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Voiceless in Gaza: Israeli Carnage and the American Courtiers

Voiceless in Gaza: Israeli Carnage and the American Courtiers
by Chris Floyd   
Death and sorrow continue to pour down in torrents over Gaza. And every death is delivered with the backing of the full faith and credit of the United States. American money, American weaponry -- and unstinting, unquestioning American diplomatic support -- are underwriting the brutal carnage. There is scarcely a single voice along the commanding heights of American power to raise the slightest protest against a savage war crime being committed in broad daylight, day after day, with the approval and connivance of the "civilized" world.
 
The hard, enclosed, impenetrable shell of American "bipartisanship" has achieved a steely perfection on the issue of Palestine; it is itself a missile -- a weapon of mass destruction -- falling on the people of Gaza.
 
 
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Escalation: Death Toll Up to 390 in Gaza

Escalation goes on; death toll up  to 390 in Gaza
by Sameh A.Habeeb
Gaza Strip, 30 Dec, 2008 - Israeli air force still launching the heaviest bombardments in Gaza ever. The fourth day of Israeli military operation started with heavy bombings took place west of Gaza City in addition to killing 2 children and around 10 in various places in Gaza to raise death toll to 390 while wounded people up to 1 thousand and 700 most of them civilians.

The Israeli announced decapitation strategy of targeting Hamas movement and avoiding civilians clearly unveiled. The F16s targeted a group of governmental building using tons of explosion resulting in killing at least 4 Palestinians. The bombings lasted for 30 minutes echoed across Gaza City causing great trauma and panic for civilians. Total damage stormed the buildings while partially destroyed some neighboring populated buildings.

Israeli warplanes, drones, artillery machines, and apache helicopters broadly took part in the nightly raids. Israeli air raids destroyed a sport club and a building inside the Islamic University of Gaza IUG. IUG was hit Monday night and 2 building were destroyed. One of the destroyed building was the laboratory funded by Islamic Development Bank estimated of millions of dollars.

The bombings continued for the whole night in separated areas in Gaza Strip. Many civic targets were bombs including mosques in Khanyonis City. Old man was killed in south of Gaza in Rafah City.
 
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Plan of Attack: Seeing Gaza

Plan of Attack
by Jim Miles
I can only witness the tragedy of Gaza from the knowledge I have gained from years of historical and foreign affairs reading, from the personal contacts and information that are readily available on the internet, and least significantly from the local evening news programs. 
 
That is more than sufficient to provide me with the overall context and the understanding of the language used in order to form a strong idea of what is really happening in Gaza.
 
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Plan of Attack: Seeing Gaza

Plan of Attack
by Jim Miles
I can only witness the tragedy of Gaza from the knowledge I have gained from years of historical and foreign affairs reading, from the personal contacts and information that are readily available on the internet, and least significantly from the local evening news programs. 
 
That is more than sufficient to provide me with the overall context and the understanding of the language used in order to form a strong idea of what is really happening in Gaza.
 
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Campaign for Hope Promised

Camp Hope Holds Obama to "Change" Pledge
by Mike Ferner
Determined to keep President-elect Barack Obama true to his promise of change, peace and economic justice activists kick off an 18-day outdoor vigil January 1, four blocks from the Illinois Senator’s home in Chicago. Camp Hope, headquartered in the Windy City’s Drexel Square Park, seeks to have Obama swiftly enact eight initiatives on issues he supported during his campaign.

A Thursday, 1:00 pm news conference will feature ministers, a Chicago City Alderman, a 25 year-old father facing deportation after living in the U.S. for 17 years and the mother of Tomas Young, a paraplegic Iraq war veteran featured in the movie, "Body of War."
 
 
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