Israel criticized on security policies

An Israeli human rights group accused Israel of violating international law in its handling of Palestinian security prisoners.

In a report issued Thursday, B’Tselem said Israeli security forces have arrested some 9,000 Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, incarcerating many of them within the Jewish state.

This, it said, constitutes a breach of international laws against civilians from an occupied territory being forcibly transferred to the territory of the occupying power. B’Tselem further alleged that prison arrangements make it hard for inmates’ families to visit.

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New and unknown deadly weapons used by Israeli forces: 'direct energy' weapons, chemical and/or biol

[Are Palestinians a captive population providing experimental subjects for American and Israeli military research? - AUPHR]

By now there are countless reports, from hospitals, witnesses, armament experts and journalists that strongly suggest that in the present offensive of Israeli forces against Lebanon and Gaza 'new weapons' are being used.

New and strange symptoms are reported amongst the wounded and the dead.

Bodies with dead tissues and no apparent wounds; 'shrunken' corpses; civilians with heavy damage to lower limbs that require amputation, which is nevertheless followed by unstoppable necrosis and death; descriptions of extensive internal wounds with no trace of shrapnel, corpses blackened but not burnt, and others heavily wounded that did not bleed.

Many of these descriptions suggest the possibility that the new weapons used include 'direct energy' weapons, and chemical and/or biological agents, in a sort of macabre experiment of future warfare, where there is no respect for anything: International rules (from the Geneva Convention to the treaties on biological and chemical weapons), refugees, hospitals and the Red Cross, not to mention the people, their future, their children, the environment, which is poisoned through dissemination of Depleted Uranium and toxic substances released after oil and chemical depots are bombed.

Right now, the Lebanese and Palestinian people have many urgent and impellent problems, yet many people believe that these episodes cannot and must not pass ignored. In fact several appeals have been launched to scientists and experts with a view to investigating the issue.

Read more: New and unknown deadly weapons used by Israeli forces: 'direct energy' weapons, chemical and/or biol

Israeli Apartheid

{mosimage}Imagine, if you will, a modern apartheid state with first, second and eleventh class citizens, all required to carry identification specifying their ethnic origin. First class citizens are obliged to serve in the armed forces, kept on ready reserve status until in their forties, and accorded an impressive array of housing, medical, social security, educational and related benefits denied all others.

Second class citizens are exempted from military service and from a number of the benefits accorded citizens of the first class. They are issued identity documents and license plates that allow them to be profiled by police at a distance. Second class citizens may not own land in much of the country and marriages between them and first class citizens are not recognized by the state. Second class citizens are sometimes arrested without trial and police torture, while frowned upon and occasionally apologized for, commonly occurs.

Citizens of the eleventh class, really not citizens at all, have no rights citizens of the first class or their government are bound to respect. Their residence is forbidden in nearly nine-tenths of the country, all of which they used to own.

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The Democrats' Lebanon Failure

The Democratic Party could have seized upon these tragic miscalculations by the Bush administration to enhance its political standing and help steer America’s foreign policy in a more rational and ethical direction. Sadly, the Democrats instead once again overwhelmingly threw their support behind President George W. Bush.

Soon after Israel began its offensive on July 12, House Republican leader John Boehner, along with House International Relations Committee Chairman Henry Hyde, introduced a resolution unconditionally supporting Israel’s military actions and commending President Bush for fully supporting the Israeli assault. Despite reports by Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and the U.N. High Commissioner from Human Rights that Israel was committing war crimes in attacking civilians, the resolution praised Israel for its “longstanding commitment to minimize civilian loss” and even welcomed “Israel’s continued efforts to prevent civilian casualties.” The resolution also claimed that Israel’s actions were “in accordance with international law,” though they flew in the face of longstanding, universally recognized legal standards regarding the use of force and the treatment of noncombatants in wartime.

Despite such a brazen attack against the credibility of reputable human rights groups and the U.N. Charter that limits military action to legitimate self defense, Rep. Tom Lantos, the ranking Democrat on the International Relations Committee and likely next committee chairman should the Democrats win back the majority in November, signed on as a full cosponsor.

Even more alarmingly, all but 15 of the 201 Democrats in the House of Representatives voted in favor of the resolution.

Read more: The Democrats' Lebanon Failure

Settlements grow on Arab land, despite promises made to U.S.

A secret, two year investigation by the defense establishment shows that there has been rampant illegal construction in dozens of settlements and in many cases involving privately owned Palestinian properties.

The information in the study was presented to two defense ministers, Amir Peretz and his predecessor Shaul Mofaz, but was not released in public and a number of people participating in the investigations were asked to sign non-disclosure agreements.

According to security sources familiar with the study, the material is "political and diplomatic dynamite."

Read more: Settlements grow on Arab land, despite promises made to U.S.

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