JULY 2006


16 NATO-Led Soldiers, Personnel Killed in Helicopter Downed By Taliban Fire, the Dutch Insist it's an
Dutch Defense Ministry spokesman Lt. Col. Nico van der Zee said bad weather may have been a factor in the crash, though he said the military had not ruled out the helicopter being shot down.The Dutch military said two of its personnel, a lieutenant colonel from the air force and an army sergeant, were on the helicopter. Officials in Kabul declined to provide information about the other passengers. Aljazeera news

More than 140 Palestinians have died since Israel began its latest assault on Gaza. The campaign triggered by the capture of an Israeli soldier by Hamas-linked militants in a cross-border raid late last month.

ISRAEL:Debate grows over Israel strategy
Paul Reynolds BBC WORLD NEWS

The deaths of nine Israeli soldiers in the battle for the village of Bint Jbeil plus the continued ability of Hezbollah to rain rockets onto northern Israel have prompted questions in Israel about its military strategy in Lebanon.

Overall, there is clarity about Israeli intentions - the release of the two captured soldiers and the removal of Hezbollah from southern Lebanon, but lack of clarity about how to achieve them.

Ze'ev Schiff, the most respected military analyst in Israel commented: "Israel is far from a decisive victory and its main objectives have not been achieved."

The 12-strong "security cabinet" nevertheless decided on Thursday to continue with the current tactics of air bombardment (perhaps stepping this up) coupled with a limited ground operation near the border. However, 30,000 reserves are being called up, thereby keeping open the option of a major expansion of the ground campaign.

The decision appears to have been a compromise between those who want to be more aggressive and those who fear the consequences in terms of increasing both Lebanese civilian and Israeli military casualties. Defence Minister Amir Peretz is thought to be among the more cautious.


The UN in Lebanon says the Israeli air force destroyed the post, in which four military observers were sheltering.

It said the four, from Austria, Canada, China and Finland, had taken shelter in a bunker under the post after it was earlier shelled 14 times by Israeli artillery.

A rescue team was also shelled as it tried to clear the rubble.

"I am shocked and deeply distressed by the apparently deliberate targeting by Israeli Defence Forces of a UN Observer post in southern Lebanon," Mr Annan said in a statement from Rome.

Unifil has been operational in the border area since 1978 and is currently 2,000 strong.Kofi Annan declares the shelling "deliberate."Bolton the USA's UN man blusters:"We're obviously very sorry," Boltin[sic] said. "We're attempting to get information where we can to confirm the nature of the incident." and Israel has demanded Kofi Annan apologise for his accusation...

THE U.S-UK 26.7.2006
BBC diplomatic correspondent Bridget Kendall said the Italian prime minister and others believe a quick ceasefire to be the main priority.

But the US and Britain will not push for a ceasefire unless root causes of the conflict are addressed, she adds.

The summit will take place without a delegation from Israel.

July 20, 2006 -- WMR reported that the Israeli military was using poison gas on villages in south Lebanon. According to a former U.S. weapons expert who served in Iraq, the artillery shell in a photo taken in Lebanon (below) is a chemical weapon delivery device. It is being handled by an Israeli Defense Force soldier and Hebrew lettering can be clearly seen on the armored vehicle. Another chemical weapons shell of the same type can be seen lying on the ground to the right. It is not known what type of chemical is in the chemical canister, however, gas dropped by the Israelis in villages in southern Lebanon has resulted in severe vomiting among the civilian population.

Media commentators have scoffed that Israel, with its relatively unique history, would ever use chemical weapons or poison gas in any war. It is precisely because of that perception that they are using such weapons. The deniability factor prevents the media from taking seriously the credible reports of banned weapons being used by the Israelis.


Israel using chemical delivery weapons in Lebanon. Fuse and chemical canister can be clearly seen in photo of Israel Defense Force personnel in Lebanon. Drawing of chemical weapon is from the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons

"You Wave the Flag, Now Show the Veterans the Services"

by jimstaro on Tue Jul 25, 2006 at 03:52:42 PM PDT


July 24, 2006

The delivery of at least 100 GBU 28 bunker busters bombs containing depleted uranium warheads by the United States to Israel for use against targets in Lebanon will result in additional radioactive and chemical toxic contamination with consequent adverse health and environmental effects throughout the middle east.

ISRAEL 25.7.2006
Yesterday evening, the representative of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs Alexander Saltanov arrived in Israel. Anatoly Yurkov, the head of the press service of the Russian embassy in Israel said that the Russian official has meetings scheduled with Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni and Vice-President Shimon Peres. There may be a meeting with the Prime Minister Ehud Olmert. Russia has already appealed to hold a meeting “between all countries and sides that may genuinely contribute to overcoming the crisis”. “The ideal thing, evidently, would be to gather in Beirut as soon as possible, for example at the beginning of the week”, said the Russian Ministry of Defense in a statement.PRAVDA NEWS SERVICE

FAN Bulletin 625: Countdown to August 4   July 22, 2006   Dear All,
August 4 is the deadline for comments in support of the effort by FAN, EWG, Beyond Pesticides (and now the Organic Consumers Association) to have the EPA revoke its approval of the use sulfuryl fluoride (ProFume) as a fumigant on hundreds of foodstuffs. As you know, our kids are already being overdosed on fluoride, this will make it even worse.
It is CRITICALLY IMPORTANT that we get as many letters to EPA Administrator Stephen Johnson and  into the EPA docket on this as AUGUST 4. As of 6:00 pm last night (Friday July 21) we had 22 letters sent in.
We have a SIMPLE system that allows you and your friends to do this ONLINE. You simply add your name and contact details - and any comments or modifications you want to the letter (see copy below) -and with the push of button your letter will be sent to Johnson with a request that the letter also be entered into the EPA dockets on this.
Go to:  If for some reason that doesn't work try cutting and pasting it in.
This is winnable. We have more going for us on this than at any other time.

1) We have the support of EWG, Beyond Pesticides and the Organic Consumers Association.

2) We have a top notch law firm in DC handling our case if this goes to court.

3) The EPA's case is very poor.  Its Pesticide divison has been blatant about twisting the science in the interests of its "client" Dow AgroSciences. It used the VERY SAME standard (the MCLG of 4 ppm) in THREE different ways, to come up with THREE DIFFERENT supposedly "safe" dosages for infants- the second and third of these manipulations coming as a response to the interventions of FAN, EWG and Beyond Pesticides. The final supposedly "safe" dosage for an infant is now TEN TIMES higher than for an adult!

4) Now the NRC (March 22, 2006) has told the EPA that their starting point for these manipulations is not safe any way!

I will be providing a COUNTDOWN on how many letters we get sent in, so please sign the online letter and send it off today - and please get as many other people to do it as well - Go to:
Thank you - please help us WIN this one. Remember each person who receives this request will learn about several important things:

1) Our kids are being overexposed to fluoride.

2) It is going to get worse.

3) The NRC report which indicates that the 4 ppm standard is not safe and needs to be lowered.

4) There are serious health concerns which are now on the scientific table.

All of these help to undermine the case for water fluoridation.
This is a time when those of you who send on the more important FAN bulletins to your own email list, will do just that and at the same time give us a rough count on what your "amplifying capacity" is by filling in the blanks:
My email address is ____________________ I live in ______________(state) and I have the caopcity to send out emails to ______________people.

Does "democratic" USA intend to interfere in Sistani's electoral list?

NAJAF, Iraq, Dec 5 (AFP) - The man in charge of drawing up an electoral list backed by Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, the spiritual leader of Iraq's Shiite Muslim majority, has been arrested by the US military, an aide said Sunday.

"American forces on Saturday arrested Mohammed Hashem al-Yehya, coordinator of the six-person committee set up by the Marjaiya (Iraq's highest Shiite authority) to supervise the drawing up of an electoral list with the backing of the ayatollah," said a Sistani representative in the holy city of Najaf.

"If he is not released, there will be serious consequences," said the source, giving no reason for Yehya's arrest in Baghdad.

The US military said it had heard reports of the arrest but was unable to give any further information.

On Tuesday, Shiite political leaders said that they were in the final stages of drawing up an electoral list that had Sistani's blessing, ahead of the landmark elections scheduled for January 30.

Sistani is one of the most powerful and popular figures in Iraq and commentators argue that any list endorsed by him would stand a good chance in the polls.

12/05/2004 17:39 GMT - AFP Turkish Press

DID THE ARABS REALLY START THIS? BLOG COMMENT QUOTES NOAM CHOMSKY:"Gaza, itself, the latest phase, began on June 24. It was when Israel abducted two Gaza civilians, a doctor and his brother. We don’t know their names. You don’t know the names of victims. They were taken to Israel, presumably, and nobody knows their fate. The next day, something happened, which we do know about, a lot. ‘Militants’ in Gaza, probably Islamic Jihad, abducted an Israeli soldier across the border. That’s Corporal Gilad Shalit. And that’s well known; first abduction is not. Then followed the escalation of Israeli attacks on Gaza, which I don’t have to repeat. It’s reported on adequately.The next stage was Hezbollah’s abduction of two Israeli soldiers, they say on the border. Their official reason for this is that they are aiming for prisoner release. There are a few, nobody knows how many. Officially, there are three Lebanese prisoners in Israel. There’s allegedly a couple hundred people missing. Who knows where they are?"- Chomsky, by Bernhard, Germany 07.16.06

THE INCREDIBLE UGLY NATURE OF THE JEWISH MILITARY - CHILDREN WRITE:Israeli girls write messages on shells at a heavy artillery position near Kiryat Shmona, in northern Israel, next to the Lebanese border, Monday, July 17, 2006.(AP Photo/Sebastian Scheiner) Dear Lebanese/Palestinian/Arab/Muslim/Christians - Kids,
Die with love.
Israeli Kids*??? :

12 Egyptian Sailors Rescued to al-Bassel Hospital in Tartous, Syria Saturday, July 15, 2006 - 09:20 PM

Tartous, Syrian coast, July 15 (SANA)

Twelve Egyptian sailors have been rescued and taken to al-Bassel Hospital in the Syrian coastal city of Tartous on Saturday after their ship which was in offshore Beirut in the Lebanese international waters was fired at, set ablaze by an Israeli barge that was firing at random in all directions. The Egyptian survivors said they sent a distress call via the satellites Friday night. They were rescued by two Syrian and Egyptian ships who were sailing in the area towards the Syrian coast, definitely to Tartous seaport.


"They keep telling us that there is a consensus in support of the war, and that's not true. They keep telling the citizens that this is the only way, and I think that there is another way," said Abeer Kopty of Mossawa, The Advocacy Center for Arab Citizens in Israel. The organizations Ta'ayush, Yesh Gvul, The Women's Coalition for Peace and other left-wing groups have joined forces "to voice a different opinion against the war and in favor of negotiations," she explained.

Eitan Lerner, who took part in the rally, said: "Israel is entering another cycle of fighting and continues the foolishness of exaggerated aggression. I came here to protest because there's a link between starving and oppressing the Palestinians and the bombings in Lebanon." "It's true that what Hizbullah did was unacceptable, but Israel is overreacting. Since when is the entire population to blame for all this?" he asked.

Rela Mazali from the New Profile organization explained: "This is a stupid, unnecessary and evil war. Our leaders could have prevented it. eventually the hostages will be released through negotiations, but hundreds will be killed along the way in Lebanon, and I don't know how many will die here. I think that we must make our voice heard." Manal Amuri from Jerusalem called on the Israeli government to hold talks with Hamas and Hizbullah. "The Israeli aggression leads to an overall war no one wants. I think that Israel should negotiate with Hizbullah and Hamas and release Palestinian prisoners in exchange for the hostages. This way this story will come to an end." "What Israel is doing now resulted in the death of civilians, innocent children, and it serves no purpose except for the government's vindictiveness. I think it's good we're showing that there are Arab and Jewish citizens in Israel who oppose the war."

GAZA: & News Agencies
GAZA CITY — "We're going to have water! We're going to have water!" chanted Palestinian children while watching workers drilling in desperate search for water, which has been something of a rarity for the 1.4 million Palestinians in Gaza since Israel bombed the strip's only power plant two weeks ago.

"Water is a human right, it's life. But we don't have any, so what can we do? We have to have water," Nabhan Habboush, a father of 11 children, told Reuters. "We couldn't wash, we couldn't clean our clothes, everyone stank," he said. Making up his mind, the 60-year-old grandfather, who is a water expert, has sought to find out a solution to the water crisis. Within hours, a crane was outside his front door, driving an industrial-sized drill through the neatly tiled pavement. The next morning, the crane arrived at the area and a group of ten men were preparing to work.

"I just decided enough was enough. I had to do something," said Habboush, who spent more than 40 years working for the Gaza water authority. "We only had about two hours of water every four or five days," he explained.

After breaking through the pavement tiles, the men drove the 30-cm-wide drill down 35 meters (115 ft) until they hit the water table beneath.It took more than nine hours, and the expectant crowd stayed to watch it all."It's very exciting," said Habboush, breaking into a smile that showed off a silver-capped tooth.

The sweating workmen behind him pulled up the drill and prepared to drive a thick pipe down the hole to complete the spring.We'll have water by tomorrow, Inshallah." Young boys played in the wet sand and dirt dredged up by the drill, while older relatives, babies on their knees, watched patiently.

An Israeli missile incinerated a van in south Lebanon, killing 20 people, among them 15 children, in the deadliest single attack of the four-day-old campaign launched by Israel after Hizbollah captured two of its soldiers and killed eight.

Police said the van was carrying two families fleeing the village of Marwaheen after Israeli loudspeaker warnings to leave their homes.

Hizbollah rockets hit Sea of Galilee town

We could not believe this would happen to us. It was very scary. We are frightened and intend to escape with our children," Ayala Aloni told Israel's Ynet news Web site after the first rocket hit.

In Karmiel, another Israeli town struck by rockets, the mayor urged residents to stay with relatives in the south of the country until the violence subsides. Several people were injured in an Israeli Arab town across the road from Karmiel on Friday.

Defence Minister Amir Peretz issued an order giving authorities the power to shut schools, factories and public institutions in the north, in a bid to limit rocket casualties. The "Special Situation" declaration falls short of a full state of emergency. Israeli generals urged the public to remain calm in the region where about 750,000 Israelis were under rocket threat, but cautioned it may be weeks until they subside. "We have to be ready for some more days, perhaps more than that, perhaps weeks, to face this reality," the Israeli army's operations chief, General Gadi Eizenkot, told reporters in Tel Aviv. "We have to prepare for a continued campaign, not to panic." The army said people living north of Haifa and Tiberias should stay inside buildings below the fourth floor. Radio announcements urged Israelis to avoid travel to northern Israel, and public events have been cancelled. The Israeli army believes Hizbollah has 10,000 to 12,000 rockets in its arsenal with ranges of 30 to 70 km (18 to 45 miles), suggesting they could reach beyond Haifa or Tiberias.Reuters

The disaster that overtook one of the Israeli Navy’s state of the art warships, Ahi-Hanit, was "thoroughly planned" in advance by an enemy which managed to take Israel’s military commanders by surprise. It has shocked Israel’s military to a degree comparable to the profound effect on US forces of al Qaeda’s 2000 attack on the USS Cole in Aden. The Saar-5 class corvette, with a crew of 61 seamen and a 10-man helicopter crew, was hit Friday, July 17 at 20:15 hours, while shelling Beirut international airport. Four crewmen were reported missing. One was found dead Saturday aboard the crippled ship......Shortly before 20:00 hours Friday, Hizballah launched a pair of land-to-sea C-802 missiles against the Israeli ship from the coast of Beirut. The trajectory of the first was adjusted to a landing amidships from above. It missed and exploded in the water. The second was rigged to skim the water like a cruise missile. It achieved a direct hit of the Ahi Hanit’s helicopter deck, starting a fire. The ship began to sink, as Nasrallah said, and would have been lost were it not for the speed and bravery of crewmen who jumped into the flames and doused them before the ship exploded and sank. ...DEBKA

US-led Iraqi army increased its arrest campaign of hundreds of Iraqi civilians in the city of Tikrit yesterday, while the world's attention is focused on the Israeli atrocities in Lebanon (Assafir, 7/15/06).
15th July

The UN Security Council held an emergency meeting on Friday and called for an end to the Israeli operation, saying it was causing the death of innocent civilians.

A three-man UN crisis team has arrived in Cairo and will hold talks with the Arab League on Saturday. The situation is also sure to be discussed at the G8 forum in St Petersburg, Russia.

Syria said it would support Hezbollah and Lebanon against Israel's attacks.
BBC World News

Silvia Cattori interviews a Palestinian doctor
11 July 2006

Interview with Doctor Juma al-Saqqa of the Hospital Shifa in Gaza

Q: It seems that you are receiving people with wounds that are very difficult to treat. Do you know what kind of arms are being used?

A: We dont know exactly what kind of weapon it was but we suggest it was a chemical weapon or a weapon with radiation [inaudible] they also had a very strong explosion. There was shrapnel trapped in the bodies.

Q: When did they use this weapon for the first time?

A: They started with Operation Summer Rain two weeks ago.

Q: Were these weapons being used from tanks or planes?

A: From the planes.

Q: And did many people die from these attacks?

A: Yes, many of them died and many are going to die because they are completely injured. Many of them have cuts that are haemorrhaging...

Q: How many died?

A: 50 killed, 200 injured.

Q: Israeli did not allow me to enter Gaza.

A: They dont want you to see what is happening here. This is the worst situation we have had since '48. We have Arab people dying day after day...We are in lack of everything. Bad water supply, bad sewage management, lack of food lack of supplies, they....[Phone line cut off.]

A hard rain's gonna fall

Laurie King, The Electronic Intifada
13 July 2006

"If you are not rain, my love
Be tree
Sated with fertility, be tree
If you are not tree, my love
Be stone
Saturated with humidity, be stone
If you are not stone, my love
Be moon
In the dream of the beloved woman, be moon
(So spoke a woman to her son at his funeral)"

From the poem, "Under Siege," by Mahmoud Darwish

The Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) have named their relentless military operation in Gaza "Summer Rain" (gishmei ha-qeitz in Hebrew), which is cruel and sarcastic given the political, historical, and environmental context of the Eastern Mediterranean. It does not rain in the summer in this region. From early May to mid-September, one can expect clear skies and no precipitation. What is raining, though, is fire and metal, along with leaflets bearing chillingly familiar threats.

Any Palestinian in Gaza, or indeed anyone who knows what happened in Lebanon one scorching summer 24 years ago, will be appropriately terrified by those leaflets warning people of the firestorms to come. The metal rains of the summer of 1982 in Beirut were heavy and deadly. No one stopped the IDF then from committing massive crimes, directed against an Arab capital crowded with civilians. And sadly, no one will stop them now. Thursday morning, President G.W. Bush and the newly elected German leader Angela Merkel reiterated that Israel has the "right to defend herself."

Institutionalized Israeli impunity is an amazing phenomenon: The capture of one Israeli soldier, taken as a bargaining chip to ransom hundreds of Palestinian men, women and children held in administrative detention in violation of the Fourth Geneva Convention, now provides the unquestioned and self-righteous pretext for massive violations of international humanitarian law. Given the mainstream media's depiction of Palestinians as cruel, heartless terrorists, and Hamas as the most evil organization ever to exist, the IDF can safely assume they'll get away with crimes this summer that will rival those committed in 1982, when 17,000 civilians lost their lives in Lebanon and Beirut was put to a brutal siege during the hottest months of the year.

Israeli Prime Minister Olmert declared last week that he wanted no one in Gaza to sleep. With the dramatic bombings of buildings and accumulating corpses in Gaza the last two nights (among them seven children in the last 24 hours), he need not worry that anyone is dozing, oblivious of the might of the IDF. As for losing sleep at night, you don't have to be in Gaza to be tossing and turning. The dynamic interaction of recent events in the region, and beyond, augur for one of the hottest summers on record.

For the last three years, I have wondered if the Middle East is at a turning point or a breaking point. The former would entail a denouement, a last-minute deliverance from horror. It would require, more than anything else, wise leadership on all sides, strong moral vision, courage, and compassion. The indices of a turning point, sadly, are not in evidence.

A breaking point would entail a cataclysmic but contained explosion or implosion, bringing a long and bloody chapter of modern history to a violent but decisive end. This, too, seems unlikely, because the region has reached another, far more dangerous stage: a tipping point that poses lethal threats and dramatic changes to communities far from the alleys of Gaza and the marble halls of the Knesset.

A tipping point constitutes the critical point in an evolving situation that leads to a new and irreversible development. Small changes which, seen in isolation, may appear insignificant, build up to a critical mass, such that the next small change may suddenly change everything in unpredictable and dramatic ways.

For those attentive to small changes and their interrelationships, indices of a tipping point in the Middle East are now coming into terrifying focus: Escalating intercommunal violence and outright ethnic cleansing in Iraq and the revelation that US troops have committed murder and rape in cold blood, not to mention a chilling report in the New York Times on July 7th that "a decade after the Pentagon declared a zero-tolerance policy for racist hate groups, recruiting shortfalls caused by the war in Iraq have allowed large numbers of neo- Nazis and skinhead extremists to infiltrate the military."

The report, by John Kifner, cited accounts by neo-Nazis of their infiltration of the military, including a discussion on the white supremacist Web site Stormfront: "There are others among you in the forces," one participant wrote. "You are never alone." These guys will come home one day - well organized, trained, and very knowledgeable about weapons and urban warfare tactics. They view their army training as preparation for a coming race war in American cities. Such soldiers pose a more lethal threat to American society than does Al-Qaida.

Meanwhile, the "War on Terror" is looking bleak further east, with this week's announcement that the UK is sending reinforcements to Afghanistan, where the Taliban are clearly, and predictably, pursuing a strategy to take back the cities. Pakistan, a member of the nuclear club, is also home to Taliban and Al-Qaida forces, who might one day be able to control the levers of the state and military. But this week came news that US intelligence services are no longer concerned with Al-Qaida in the Middle East, but rather, are redirecting their attention to Al-Qaida v.2 in Europe, London, and in the US.

And yesterday, the fires of the hot summer of 2006 spread to Lebanon. The Israeli Government just declared that entire country a legitimate target for massive air strikes following the kidnapping of two Israeli soldiers by Hizbullah members who crossed the border into Israel in a daring raid, an action that may well not have happened had the IDF's punishment of the Gaza Strip not been so cruel and the world's silence in the face of Israel's war crimes so deafening. Hizbullah, like Palestinians, wants illegally imprisoned friends and relatives to be freed and returned. Diplomatic and multilateral mechanisms for attaining this end have halted, so maybe this is the last resort: taking Israeli soldiers as bargaining chips.

If Israel carries through with its threats to "turn back the clock 30 years in Lebanon," it should surprise no one if this exacerbates growing Sunni-Shi'a tensions in the region, particularly in Iraq, and also leads to violence and chaos in countries throughout the region, all with unpredictable effects. If this scenario plays out, expect to see attempts to destabilize Jordan and Saudi Arabia in the coming weeks.

The Middle East is in dire need of the refreshing rains of law, justice, sanity, and wisdom. The clouds on the horizon, though, are full of fire and death, not life-giving water.

A hard rain's gonna fall, clanging like metal on concrete and bone. It did not have to come to this, but the tipping point is here, and few will be able to sleep peacefully through the coming storms.

Laurie King-Irani is a co-founder of the Electronic Intifada. She has lived and worked in
Israel, Palestine and Lebanon and is currently living in Washington, DC.


Israeli planes Saturday 15th destroyed a bridge in the central Gaza Strip, wounding a civilian, Palestinian security sources said. It was the fourth bridge destroyed by Israel since the offensive in Gaza began two weeks ago.

Offices belonging to Hamas politicians and alleged militant training camps in northern Gaza were also hit.

Poet arrested for verses written 22 years ago:
>Dear friend,
>I hope this finds you well.
>I am writing to you today, to inform you about serious charges the
>Government of Jordan has accused me of, which might lead to imprisonment.
>The accusation is based on verses in some poems I wrote 22 years ago. These
>accusations vary from "offending the Jordanian State and the armed forces,
>raising internal conflicts and unrest, and presenting distorted information
>on the events of September 1970 to the new generations".
>As you can see, these accusations are groundless. It is a clear case of
>violating the basic human rights, specifically the freedom of expression.
>The Jordanian Writer Association has condemned this action and called upon
>the Government of Jordan to stop this violation and to immediately drop the
>charges against me. Many Jordanian and Arab associations and human rights
>organizations have voiced concern and joined the campaign protesting
>against this action. Nevertheless, the Government still insists on its
>accusations and the charges are now submitted to the Court of Law. If
>condemned I'll be facing a prison sentence from 6 to 36 months.
>For this, and because I know that you personally would not accept such
>violation, I call on you to join the solidarity campaign initiated by The
>Jordanian Writer Association, and write to the Jordanian government in
>protest against this action. I will appreciate it if you can circulate this
>call among friends, media and associations in your country and worldwide.
>The addresses of the concerned Government organizations to write to are the
>Warmest Wishes
>Ibrahim Nasrallah>

At least 631 Iraqi civilians and security forces were killed between June 8 and June 30, according to Associated Press figures. That includes 25 people killed Monday in a bicycle bombing in Baqouba.


At least 40 Palestinians and an Israeli have died in raids launched after militants seized an Israeli soldier.

Israeli aircraft hit fresh targets in Gaza on Sunday evening, including a suspected weapons depot in Gaza city.

Five Palestinians were wounded in an air strike on a van transporting weapons, while Palestinian militants fired two Qassam rockets at the Israeli border town of Sderot.

'No re-occupation'

"I think that once the Qassam shooting will be stopped and the terrorist actions against innocent civilians will be halted altogether, there will be no need for any Israeli action in Gaza," Mr Olmert told foreign journalists in Jerusalem.

On Sunday, he told ministers the offensive was not a re-occupation of Gaza, but would continue for as long as it took to secure the release of 19-year-old Cpl Gilad Shalit, captured two weeks ago, and stop cross-border rocket attacks.

On Friday the European Union condemned "the loss of lives caused by disproportionate use of force by the Israeli Defence Forces and the humanitarian crisis it has aggravated".

Mr Olmert responded on Monday: "Can one measure the anxiety, the fear, the shocks, the lack of security of tens of thousands of people living day in and day out for almost a year under the constant threat of missiles shot at them?

"When was the last time that the European Union condemned this shooting and suggested effective measures to stop it? We were waiting and waiting and waiting."

UN Secretary General Kofi Annan has demanded an immediate halt to Israel's "disproportionate use of force in densely populated areas" which he said was against international humanitarian law.

Hamas policy

Israeli forces have withdrawn from parts of northern Gaza they seized last week, but they remain east of Gaza City and in the south of the Gaza Strip.

Hamas says Cpl Shalit is alive and being well-treated, and it is demanding Israel release women and children among the 9,000 Palestinians held in Israeli jails.

Mr Olmert ruled out any negotiations with the Hamas led-Palestinian government, calling the militant group a "terrorist bloody organization".

But he also denied trying to topple the democratically elected Palestinian government.

"We have no particular desire to topple the Hamas government as a policy. We have a desire to stop terrorists from inflicting terror on the Israeli people," he said.

Since Cpl Shalit's capture, Israeli forces have re-entered Gaza, bombed its infrastructure and arrested Hamas Cabinet ministers and threatened to assassinate other leaders.


Bloody life in Gaza, scary days and dark nights all the time, The attack is still ongoing, This laptop computer is running out of battery at the moment—I will get back to update the website as soon as possible.

All the residents of Gaza, including myself, are having rolling power outages after the power plant was completely damaged in a missile attack launched as Israel began an incursion with Israeli F-16s and helicopters. There is no electricity and this is affecting the entire Gaza Strip and is making it impossible for hospitals, among other things, to work.

The power outages have also affected the water supplies running with electrical pumps.

Israel also destroyed three bridges in the territory, rendering the structures impassable to vehicles. These bridges are the only ones connecting the North of Gaza with its south. If this siege continues, our life will become more hellish!

"The badly damaged power plant provided about half of the territory's electricity," says Mohammed Abu Shamaleh, Executive director of the Palestinian Generating Company in Gaza. He estimates that the damage to the structure is $16m and it could take up to six months to repair. So now, all Gaza Strip, will stay with no electricity.

The hovering of F-16s are still over,Rafah. The Gaza International Airport was attacked and Israeli soldiers transformed it into a military zone full of snipers. Umm Yousef Abu Jazar, a mother of 7 children escaped the shelling of her house as it was blasted by the soldiers. "I don’t know where to go with my daughters, we don’t want to die under the Israeli tanks and bulldozers, we want to live as everyone else lives" she said, crying and running to seek shelter.

I must leave now, the laptop is running out of battery and should get this online and will try to be back when I get the chance. Please tell about what is going on to the local media in your area and show the world about what the Israeli Occupation Forces are doing to the civilians here.

The Israelis say they are at war with the Palestinians but they cannot accept the status of "prisoner of war" for Gilad Shalit(JB.Editor):

BBC: Israel's operations in Gaza and the West Bank appear to have as their aim not just an increase in pressure to get the release of its captured soldier but the weakening of the Hamas government.

The Israeli Defence Minister, the Labour leader Amir Peretz, far from being a hawk himself, said: "The masquerade ball is over."

In a reference to the detention of eight Hamas cabinet ministers and about 20 other members of the Palestinian parliament, Mr Peretz said: "The suits and ties will not serve as cover to the involvement and support of kidnappings and terror." BUT there are signs of disagreement within Israel about tactics

Some of those measures, such as the bombing of a power station in Gaza, have brought international criticism and questions as to whether this attack violated Article 48 of the addition to the Geneva Conventions in 1949:

"In order to ensure respect for and protection of the civilian population and civilian objects, the Parties to the conflict shall at all times distinguish between the civilian population and combatants and between civilian objects and military objectives and accordingly shall direct their operations only against military objectives."

Israel has ruled out any negotiations and is calling for the unconditional release of its soldier.


Al-Jazeerah conflict terminology comment: In previous reports, civilians were killed but were describes as "militants, "extremists," and "insurgents," the derogatory words for resistance fighters. As a result, readers are cautioned to suspect that these alleged Taliban deaths could be for Afghani civilians).

By TINI TRAN Associated Press Writer

Jul 2, 2006, KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) --

A Taliban attack on a British base killed two soldiers and an Afghan interpreter, military officials said Sunday, while at least 20 alleged Taliban fighters were killed during clashes and coalition airstrikes. Four other British soldiers were wounded but are in stable condition. Two British soldiers were killed last week in an attack in the same district of Helmand province. A total of five British troops have been killed since the start of Operation Mountain Thrust.

There has been a spike of violence in recent weeks as the NATO occupation forces (Dubbing themselves as International Security Assistance Force) prepare to take over security in southern Afghanistan from the U.S forces.

While the world gapes at Gaza the Israelis push ahead with other devastation

Bulldozers start work on Wall to annex Bethlehemıs Cremisan Monastery  

While the worldıs attention turns to the dramatic situation in Gaza, the Israeli Army has begun uprooting ancient olive trees in Bethlehemıs Cremisan area, marking out the path of the wall to be built through one of the regionıs most valuable heritage sites.

The Cremisan area is of significant heritage value, home to the only winery in Palestine and two monasteries.  Some of the finest examples of the regions ancient terraced landscape can be found here.  The Wall will carve through these terraces destroying agricultural landscapes that have survived for centuries.

An urgent appeal has been circulated by Beit Jala district council, calling for action to stop the bulldozers. The statement reads: ³This morning Tuesday 27th of June 2006, the Israeli bulldozers guarded with armed personnel started cutting and uprooting olive trees in the Cremisan area in preparation for the construction of the segregation Wall. Cremisan area has the only remaining forest in the city, and the most fertile agricultural land, which is the main source of income to many farmers in the city.²

When the Wall is completed, Beit Jala district will have lost access to two-thirds of its land.  The Cremisan area is one of the very few recreational sites in the city where locals used to go on weekends and holidays.  

Open Bethlehemıs Chief Executive, Leila Sansour says: ³At a time when the US Congress is considering the plight of Palestinian Christians, we are witnessing the destruction of this communityıs land, heritage and livelihood.  The people of Bethlehem are united in their message to the international community: if you want to help us, stop the construction of Israelıs Wall.²

The last announcement of major confiscation of Beit Jalaıs land happened in March when world attention was focused on the Jericho Prison siege.

Leila Sansour: +44 7814 937743 Charlotte Carson: +44 7768 35897
Samia Zeit (Beit Jala District Council): +972 2 274 2601 / +972 599 253 830

Open Bethlehem
Victoria Chambers
16-18 Strutton Ground, London SW1P 2HP.
020 7222 8443 / 07768 305897

Israel has revoked the East Jerusalem residency rights of a Hamas cabinet minister and three MPs detained with dozens of Hamas officials on Thursday.

Under attack , night in Gaza.

US Guantanamo tribunals 'illegal' , AS IF WE DID NOT ALREADY KNOW THAT....

The US Supreme Court has ruled that the Bush administration does not have the authority to try terrorism suspects by military tribunal.

Justices upheld the challenge by Osama Bin Laden's ex-driver to his trial at Guantanamo, saying the proceedings violated Geneva Conventions.

The ruling is seen as a major blow to President George W Bush - but it does not order the closure of Guantanamo.

Guantanamo inmates


A Connecticut based Palestinian activist, Mazin Qumsiyeh, attended a meeting in Detroit out of which came a document entitled the “Detroit Declaration.” He sent it to PNN and the statement is printed below.


“Thirty-two Palestinian organizers and activists from across the U.S gathered in suburban Detroit, Michigan on the weekend of June 23rd-25th 2006, marking the first politically diverse national meeting of Palestinians in the U.S. since 1988. This grouping is NOT a new organization, and in no way intends to become one. It is a loose network of activists and preexisting groups and in no way seeks to take the place of already existing groups. The meeting participants agreed, by consensus, to issue the following statement reflecting the results of the meeting.

“The Detroit meeting comes at a critical time when Palestinians are facing a political impasse and a political and economic siege. It also comes in response to a call issued by participants of the Palestinian Shataat (Exile) Conference in Geneva held in December 2005. At the Shataat conference, Palestinians gathered from Europe, North and South America, Australia and the Arab World to discuss the need to re-invigorate grass-roots organizing and rebuild community-based institutions within the framework of a reformed, democratic, inclusive and genuinely representative Palestinian National Council.

“The Detroit meeting sought to gather Palestinians, irrespective of political affiliations or community and organizational membership, with a focus on developing ways to mobilize the Palestinian community in the US to affirm our Palestinian narrative and assert our rights to:

“Self-determination and equality, return of the refugees to their original homes, lands, properties and villages (a natural right supported by international law and UN Resolution 194); and End of Zionist occupation and colonization of Palestine, including Jerusalem.

“The participants who hailed from California, Connecticut, Illinois, Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri, Nebraska, New York, Ohio, Virginia and Washington D.C., represented the entire Palestinian political spectrum, several generations of Palestinians in the US, and a rich pool of organizing experience.

“After a weekend of intense deliberation, brainstorming, and strategizing, the participants have committed to:

“1) Empower the Palestinian community and its existing grassroots organizations across the U.S. We believe that empowerment of our community hinges on its ability to live in relative security and safety. For this reason, we seek to address the community’s interest as members of the Palestinian national body as well as its particular concerns as activists, organizers, recent immigrants, youth, women, and workers who face particular challenges in the US. We seek to accomplish this by establishing a loose network of Palestinian activists and organizations at a national level and focusing on three campaigns in the US—BDS (boycott, divestment and sanctions), breaking the siege, and media advocacy.

“2) Build for the US Popular Palestinian National Conference to take place no later than 2008— the 60th Anniversary of the Palestinian Nakba.

“We seek to make the Conference as inclusive as possible --shaped by input generated amongst local Palestinian communities across the U.S. as well as a preparatory meeting set for November 2006.

“Many similar initiatives have already started in Europe, with incredibly successful results, including a conference held in Sweden in May 2006, attracting 5,000 Palestinians. We believe we have the ability to convene a similar conference in the US and that it is our duty to help shape our national ambitions as Palestinians, given our unique posture as US citizens and residents who are part of the social fabric of the immigrant community in the U.S. In addition to our national struggle, which seeks to triumph in an existential battle against Israeli colonialism and occupation, Palestinians in the U.S. are also struggling against racism, discrimination, political repression, and anti-immigrant policies. This community must rise up once again as it did in the heyday of the Palestinian American activism and organizing of the late 70s and 80s. Although we have faced serious blows and attacks, we should note the victory of Aiad Barakat as a turning point in our activism. After a lengthy 19 year court battle in the landmark case of the L.A. 8, which sought to persecute Palestinian activism, Barakat can finally live his life in relative normalcy after being granted U.S. citizenship against all odds.

“We are calling upon our community to celebrate this landmark victory by revitalizing our grassroots activism, speaking confidently for ourselves, and maximizing our potential as the agents of change in our collective struggle for justice, return, and liberation.

“Join us in rebuilding Palestinian activism in the US and building for the US popular Palestinian National Conference in 2008."