The Blanket http://indiamond6.ulib.iupui.edu:81/
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can I tell you," she said, gazing at the red carpet and clasping
her hands into a tight fist,
Karen Lyden Cox
. . . The corporate media assures us daily that we are fighting the War On Terrorism.
"Conversations with friends in Jerusalem revolve around the latest news from family, friends and colleagues throughout the besieged cities of the West Bank. Words from telephone calls weave a tapestry of horror. Unconfirmed reports tell of death squads, men being lined up blindfolded and shot in the head; a child being shot in front of his mother; a family living with two corpses in the living room; IDF soldiers telling families to drink sewage . . . Articles tell of houses being bulldozed, refugee camps being rained with missiles, ambulances being denied access at checkpoints, slowly filling with blood." - Annika Hampson, eyewitness in Jerusalem, 04/09/02, from Children Raised with the Sounds of Bullets, full text at http://electronicintifada.net/diaries/archives/00000084.shtml
. . . "Israeli Operation Defensive Shield is in full swing." - the corporate "media", 04/08/02
"MSF denounces the serious obstruction of medical activities and harassment of medical personnel as well as the systematic violation of international humanitarian law by the Israeli Defense Forces. Access of the wounded and sick to medical care and respect of international humanitarian law is of fundamental importance and requires your urgent attention during your current Middle East visit." - Nicholas de Torrente, U.S.A., Executive Director Médecins Sans Frontières - Doctors Without Borders, 04/09/02, from Open letter to Secretary of State Colin Powell, full text of letter at http://www.doctorswithoutborders.org/publications/other/topowell_04-2002.shtml
"Palestinian civil society leaders today sent an urgent letter to EU foreign ministers, ahead of their meeting tonight on the deteriorating situation in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. The letter, which calls for immediate and urgent international protection for Palestinian civilians, has been shared with Christian Aid by our partners in the Occupied Territories. Christian Aid hopes that there will be a response from the European Union and International Community that will bring peace to the Palestinian Territories and Israel." - Christian Aid, 04/03/02, from Plea from the Palestinians, full text at http://www.christian-aid.org.uk/news/stories/020403.htm
"My name is Zuhair Sabbagh. I teach sociology at Bir Zeit University in the occupied West Bank. I am sending you the following email from occupied Ramallah. It covers a great part of the brutal events that took place in Ramallah in the last 9 days. I would like to ask you to send it to as many people as possible. I do appreciate your help and stand with our national struggle. Yours, Zuhair Sabbagh" - Zuhair Sabbagh, eyewitness in Ramallah, Occupied Palestine, Sociologist, Editor of Electronic Intifada, 04/08/02, from The Reoccupation of Ramallah, full text of Mr. Sabbagh's email at http://electronicintifada.net/diaries/archives/00000080.shtml
. . . "The dollar will remain vulnerable this week to the situation in the Middle East as investor attention focuses on Secretary of State Colin Powell's trip to the region in a bid to broker peace. Mr. Powell's trip comes amid optimism that the U.S. might be able to restore calm and engineer an Israeli withdrawal from Palestinian areas, which in turn would be positive for the dollar and other U.S. assets." - Dow Jones Newswires, New York, 04/08/02
Investors are worried about the health of the dollar. Palestinians are living with unburied corpses. Palestinians attempting to drag the wounded to safety are shot. It is reported that sewage water is being mixed with baby formula to feed infants.
"For six days, I cannot reach my sister who lives in the camp. There is no water, no electricity and no food in the camp." [Dr. Ahmed Rozeh, Jenin Refugee Camp] There were even claims that some in the camp had resorted to drinking sewage. - Huggler and Ghazali, 04/09/02, Independent, full text at http://www.independent.co.uk/story.jsp?story=283026
There is no water for mothers giving birth in Bethlehem.
"We see footage of water pipes in Bethlehem, broken by Israeli soldiers, with water streaming into the sky while Palestinian civilians have nothing to drink. People who are completely without water must now risk their lives to find some. The elderly, the pregnant women and newborns and people who are ill are endangered by these conditions." - Tzaporah Ryter, eyewitness in Bethlehem, 04/07/02, full text at http://www.electronicintifada.net
. . . 34 Israeli officers and soldiers are in military prisons for refusing to fight in the occupied territories. To date, 411 have refused to fight and the numbers are rising. - thecouragetorefuse.org, updated 04/10/02
of Ohmets Lesarev
("Courage to Refuse")
Combatant Letter 2002
We, reserve combat officers and soldiers of the Israel Defense Forces, who were raised upon the principles of Zionism, sacrifice and giving to the people of Israel and to the State of Israel, who have always served in the front lines, and who were the first to carry out any mission, light or heavy, in order to protect the State of Israel and strengthen it.
We, combat officers and soldiers who have served the State of Israel for long weeks every year, in spite of the dear cost to our personal lives, have been on reserve duty all over the Occupied Territories, and were issued commands and directives that had nothing to do with the security of our country, and that had the sole purpose of perpetuating our control over the Palestinian people. We, whose eyes have seen the bloody toll this Occupation exacts from both sides.
We, who sensed how the commands issued to us in the Territories, destroy all the values we had absorbed while growing up in this country.
We, who understand now that the price of Occupation is the loss of IDFs human character and the corruption of the entire Israeli society.
We, who know that the Territories are not Israel, and that all settlements are bound to be evacuated in the end.
We hereby declare that we shall not continue to fight this War of the Settlements.
We shall not continue to fight beyond the 1967 borders in order to dominate, expel, starve and humiliate an entire people.
We hereby declare that we shall continue serving in the Israel Defense Forces in any mission that serves Israels defense.
The missions of occupation and oppression do not serve this purpose - and we shall take no part in them.
http://www.couragetorefuse.org/default.asp?content=seruv_statement and http://www.zmag.org/ZNET.htm
. . . Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon said in a speech Monday to Israel's parliament that while his military campaign was limited in time, it would not end until the Palestinian militias have been crushed.
"Two children dragged the broken metal frame of a cart across the road. They arranged it next to a pile of plastic milk crates and some other small pieces of garbage and stone debris. They were giddy about their endeavor, attempting to make systematic rows of obstructions across the street to Manger Square. I paused to photograph this futile gesture. It was truly truly a saddening sight. These children were building a roadblock for tanks." - Ben Garby, eyewitness in Bethlehem, 04/08/02, full text at http://electronicintifada.net
. . . War crimes are being committed with American-made and American-patented weapons, billions of dollars worth. The sign that says YOUR TAX DOLLARS AT WORK doesn't mention this.
"There are many myths about what is happening in the Middle East- urban legends, stereotyping and dangerously slanted information. This information has been spoon-fed to the American people. We lap it up unquestioningly. But these half truths, slants and outright lies do as much to perpetuate this blood bath as if we were sending guns and ammunition. Oh wait we are." - Nancy Stohlman, eyewitness in Bethlehem, 04/03/02, from The Invasion of Bethlehem and Our Tax Dollars at Work, full text at http://counterpunch.org/stohlman2.html
. . . "Calling for the largest increase in defense spending in 20 years and asking Congress to nearly double the money for homeland security, President Bush promised Saturday to "spend what it takes to win the war against terrorism." - Associated Press, Washington, 01/26/02, from Bush: No Limit For Security Budget
"I helped kill a Palestinian today. If you pay taxes to the U.S. government, so did you. And unless the policies of the U.S. government change, tomorrow will be no different. It is easy for Americans to decry the "cycle of violence" in Palestine, but until we acknowledge our own part in that violence, there is little hope for a just peace in Palestine or the Middle East." - Robert Jensen, 04/09/02, full text at http://www.factpress.com
. . . I think we have to keep reminding everybody that this is an arms control problem, Powell said [referring to the Israeli/Palestinian conflict]. - Alan Sipress, The Washington Post, 02/02/01
"Since Israel's declaration of independence in 1948 it has been involved in five wars with neighboring states. Its vulnerable location - bordered by Egypt, Lebanon, Syria, and Jordan, and within missile distance, of Iran, Iraq, and Saudi Arabia - has prompted the U.S. to maintain a commitment, since the Truman administration, to "safeguard Israel's security and well-being" and cultivate its "qualitative edge." In other words, we help make Israel's military technology far superior to that of any of its neighbors'. This also, incidentally, helps the U.S. "secure access to [Middle Eastern] energy resources."
Barely larger than New Jersey, Israel is nonetheless the fourth-largest recipient of weapons from the U.S. - since 1993, it has received close to $10 billion in weapons alone - as well as engaging in joint military exercises, weapon research and development programs, and exchanges of military scientists and engineers with the United States.
To help fund its operations, Israel has since 1986 received an annual U.S. allotment of $1.8 billion in foreign military financing (FMF), dedicated to weapon procurement. Israel is also the only country allowed to spend $475 million of its FMF each year to develop and buy weapons domestically. And Israel's due for a raise: The 1999 Omnibus Bill allots the country an additional $6 million next year for procurement and also raises the cap on Israel's own weapons development by $15 million." - MOJO Wire, full text at http://www.motherjones.com/arms/israel.html
. . . My worry is that Yasser Arafat can't perform," Bush said, according to a transcript of the interview. "He's been given plenty of opportunities. Asked whether Arafat had forfeited Bush's trust, the president replied, "He certainly hasn't earned it." As an example, Bush said that Arafat had pledged to fight terrorism, but then ordered a shipment of arms from Iran. "He's got a long way to go," Bush said. - CNN, Washington, 04/09/02
"The U.S. also fears that Israel's close partnership and resulting knowledge of sophisticated military technology is propelling still-secret American weapons into the wrong hands. The U.S. Arms Export Control Act (AECA) specifically states that no country may sell U.S. "defense articles or service" to a third country (known as unauthorized retransfer) without U.S. approval. From 1975 to 1995, 17 reports went to Congress concerning so-called end-use violations, seven of which pertained to Israel. Yet the U.S. has continually backed down from taking action against Israel, primarily due to enormous pressure from Israel's well-organized congressional lobby.
Two of Israel's alleged end-use violations involve "selling modified versions of our weapons" or "sending technicians familiar with our equipment" to other countries, Zakheim says. In one case, Israel allegedly sold a modified version of the Patriot missile to China in 1992, which led the State Department to send an investigative team to Israel.
In another case, there is the possibility that the PL-8 missiles China made and then sold to Iraq have U.S. Sidewinder technology on board -- which Israel may have passed to China in the sale of its own, possibly Sidewinder-enhanced, missiles." - MOJO Wire, full text at http://www.motherjones.com/arms/israel.html
. . . Secretary of State Colin Powell was sent from Washington on Sunday to broker a cease-fire between Israelis and Palestinians. He will arrive in Israel after stops in Morocco, Egypt, Spain, and Jordan.
During a photo session in Morocco, King Mohammed of Morocco asked Powell "Don't you think it would be more important to go to Jerusalem first?" - Arabic News, 04/08/02
. . . Secretary of State Colin Powell is lauded as the latest in a long line of peacemakers sent to the Middle East. "He confronts and almost intractable set of problems." - Henry Hyde, Republican chair U.S. House International Relations
"In a speech Monday pledging to proceed with his offensive in the West Bank, Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon said his next step would be to isolate the Palestinians from Israelis with what he called buffer zones." - Williams, The Washington Post, Ramallah, 04/09/02
"The move toward peace was just one component of Israel's transformation from a centralized, garrison state to a robust, bourgeois and capitalistic society, with a decade of economic growth, a high-tech boom and an influx of immigrants from the former Soviet Union." - Frankel, The Washington Post in the International Herald Tribune, 04/08/02
"To single Ariel Sharon out as Israel's exceptional evil - if only he were gone and polite, decent folks like Shimon Peres could guide the nation - is to be oblivious of history. It wasn't under Ariel Sharon that the Drobles Plan was drafted, nor under Sharon that Kiryat Arba was established in 1968, but under Labor. Permanent settlement, retention and expansion of the settlements: this has driven Israeli policy under all every government since 1967." - Cantarow, U.S.A., 04/06/02, from Speak Out: 34 Years of Israeli Policy Have Laid the Groundwork for Its Unholy War in the West Bank and Gaza, full text at http://www.zmag.org/content/Mideast/cantarowwar.cfm
. . . "There is no military solution to the conflict," said a joint statement issued by four leaders and Powell after their meeting." - Schweid, Associated Press Diplomatic Writer, 04/10/02, from UN, EU Back Powell Peace Mission
"Plans are under way for U.S. and coalition forces to help train and create an Afghan national army, Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld said today. Air Force Gen. Richard B. Myers, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, noted that U.S. service members involved in training Afghans could be "in the low hundreds, at most." He said the training "is directly" part of the U.S. military's mission to ensure Afghanistan no longer is a safe haven for terrorists.
Myers said interim Afghan government leader Hamid Karzai emphatically doesn't want the United States to do the security job, but to provide the Afghans the wherewithal to do that job themselves.
Another issue, Rumsfeld noted, is finding the money to train, equip and pay an Afghan army. In fact, he added, the size of a national army would be proportionate to available funds.
said the United States and coalition countries are trying to raise money for
both the interim and follow-on international security assistance forces and
for the training of the Afghan army.
Similar training arrangements are being discussed for Yemen and the Republic of Georgia, Rumsfeld remarked. The intent is to train soldiers so they can better defend and fight against terrorism." - Gilmore, American Forces Press Service, Washington, 03/25/02, from U.S. Military Will Help Train Afghan Army, Rumsfeld Says, Defense Link U.S. Dept. of Defense
. . . "Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon has begun to prepare a defence against potential war crimes charges in Belgium, according to reports on Israeli Army Radio. Survivors of a 1982 massacre of Palestinian refugees in Beirut have begun proceedings against the Israeli leader." - BBC News, 07/26/01
"Powell traced this relationship to the basis of the alliances democratic cooperation...a cooperation based on rules of law and democracy [relationship with Israel]. We have stood with Israel throughout its history. We have demonstrated again and again that our roots are intertwined, as they are with all nations who share our beliefs in openness and democracy." - Mitchell Bard, 11/03/95, Jewish Bulletin of Northern California, Op-Ed
"On all my stays in the West Bank I witnessed the daily humiliation of Palestinians at Israeli checkpoints; the casual landscape and social scenery of apartheid (the most obvious and continual manifestations were the checkpoints with differing treatment of Palestinians on the one hand; Israeli Jews and internationals on the other, and the different color of license plates - blue for Palestinians, yellow for Israelis). I interviewed villagers whose homes had been blown up and/or bulldozed by Israeli soldiers. I heard accounts by men and women jailed, abused, and tortured in Israel's prisons (the practice is an established fact acknowledged by Israel 's B'tselem and foreign human rights organizations and is ongoing as I write: THE FINANCIAL TIMES April 6 reported, "The Israeli human rights organization B'tselem yesterday petitioned the High Court after receiving reports of torture at the Ofer detention center near Ramallah.") About all of the foregoing the Hebrew press was quite open while the US press was almost invariably silent." - Cantarow, U.S.A., 04/06/02, from Speak Out: 34 Years of Israeli Policy Have Laid the Groundwork for Its Unholy War in the West Bank and Gaza, full text at http://www.zmag.org/content/Mideast/cantarowwar.cfm
. . . Secretary of State Colin Powell said Sunday he will meet face-to-face with Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat later this week "if circumstances permit," calling on Arafat to denounce the violence that has engulfed the Middle East. The secretary, who has been critical of Arafat's efforts to crack down on Palestinian-based terrorism, said he "looks forward to meeting" the Palestinian leader if access, security and "other circumstances" can be ironed out." - CNN, Washington, 04/02/02 "Sharon has branded Arafat the leader of a regime of terror, and has suggested he would no longer do business with him." - MSNBC, 04/10/02
"The Middle East conflict exploded in a new round of violence on Monday after a Palestinian leader wanted by Israel was killed in a blast, triggering a revenge attack which left one Israeli dead. Palestinian officials said the death of Raed Al-Karmi, the 30-year-old leader of the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades in the West Bank town of Tulkarem, marked a return to Israel's controversial policy of assassinations." - DAWN, 01/15/02, from Palestinian Leader Killed In Explosion, full text at http://www.dawn.com/2002/01/15/int7.htm
. . . "Justice for the victims appears remote as long as those suspected of having committed serious human rights violations against the Sarajevo population remain at large, be they commanders or common soldiers." (referring in this case to Bosnia-Herzegovina) - Amnesty International, 04/06/02, from No Justice for Victims of War Crimes as Long as Perpetrators Remain at Large, full text at http://www.amnesty-usa.org/news/2002/bosnia04062002.html "LAW calls on member states, including as High Contracting Parties to the Fourth Geneva Convention to comply with their obligations under article 146 by searching for, investigating and bringing to trial perpetrators of war crimes and crimes against humanity, under universal jurisdiction and through a War Crimes Tribunal and calls for an end to all acts by member states aiding and abetting the perpetration of war crimes and crimes against humanity, including by ending supply of all arms used to perpetrate such crimes." - LAW: The Palestinian Society for the Protection of Human Rights and the Environment, 04/08/02, full text at http://www.lawsociety.org/Press/Preleases/2002/April/apr8.html
"In direct refutation of this portrayal is the fact that relations between American soldiers and the Vietnamese people is excellent." - Major Colin Powell, December 13, 1969, in response to Spec. 4th Class Tom Glen's complaints about atrocities committed by American forces in Viet Nam, later known as the My Lai Massacre, see also http://www.consortiumnews.com/archive/colin.html
. . . "Between celebrating his 65th birthday and embarking on a trip to the Middle East, Secretary of State Colin Powell found an hour Saturday to outline U.S. diplomatic policy at the annual meeting of The Trilateral Commission." - Palo, Associated Press, 04/08/02
The details of the meetings are not permitted to be released to the public. The Trilateral Commission founded - 29 years ago for a three year stint - by David Rockefeller, Chairman, Chase Manhattan Bank, Zbigniew Brzezinski [Carter's national security advisor], and approximately 350 private members in international industry, media, banking, labor unions, "public service", etc. from Japan, European Union countries, United States, and Canada.
"The growing interdependence that so impressed the founders of the Trilateral Commission in the early 1970s is deepening into globalization". - The Trilateral Commission
"Among the 250 political, business, academic and media leaders gathered for the group's weekend meeting at a plush hotel, bow-ties and dark suits were the apparel of choice. But former secretary of state Madeleine Albright, wearing a lavender-colored suit, offered a reprieve from the dark parade. "The commission, however, has "always made a point to invite important voices of the press," said Francois Sauzey, the group's press officer." - Vanessa Palo, Associated Press Writer, 04/08/02, from Powell Talks to Trilateral Group
. . . "Typically, both the Post and the Times fixate on the strategic efficacy of the Israeli military offensive rather than its flagrant illegality and fierce cruelty. . .The New York Times ended an April 3 editorial with this sentence: "Only the most bankrupt leadership - spiritually, intellectually and politically - allows this macabre, self-delusional act of ruin to pass without anguished condemnation." Those words referred to a recent suicide bombing. But they also apply to the U.S. government and major media outlets continuing to wink and nod while the Israeli military slaughters Palestinian people." - Norman Solomon, Media Beat, 04/09/02, from Media Pick Sides In The Mideast, full text at FAIR http://www.fair.org/media-beat/ and Working Assets - Working For Change at http://www.workingforchange.com/article.cfm?ItemId=13101
"It's easy to see why reporters, analysts and media executives confidently ascribe staunchly pro-industry, anti-consumer views to Michael Powell. There's his record as FCC commissioner, a job he's held since 1997. Powell has often criticized rules restricting concentration, and specifically questioned the agency's authority to place public interest conditions on mergers. The AOL/Time Warner deal also showcased Powell's nonchalant approach to personal conflicts of interest; he took part in the merger decision despite the fact that his father, Secretary of State Colin Powell, was one of AOL's directors, with lucrative stock options in the company. (The New York Times' Stephen Labaton has also noted [1/23/01] that since Michael Powell joined the FCC, "the National Association of Broadcasters has been a generous contributor to the foundation started by his father, America's Promise: the Alliance for Youth".)" - Jackson, FAIR, from Their Man in Washington: Big media have an ally in new FCC chair Michael Powell, full text at http://www.fair.org/extra/0110/powell.html
"You own $13.3 million of AOL stock. If the AOL/Time Warner merger goes through, you will be a lot better off than if it doesnt. Your son Michael Powell is one of five FCC commissioners who have to approve the merger, yet he has refused to recuse himself from the decision. How can you justify such blatant conflict of interest?" - Nowar Collective, from questions raised to Colin Powell, sources: Norman Solomon, Media Beat, 3/25/00, at http://www.fair.org/ and http://www.nowarcollective.com/powellquestions.htm
. . . "Challenge young people by having high expectations of them; engage them with the opportunity to realize those expectations through constructive, character-building activities." - Colin Powell, Founding Chairman of America's Promise: A Crusade for Youth
"It's really not a number I'm terribly interested in." - General Colin Powell, when asked by the press how many Iraqis had been killed by the American ground and air assault, 03/23/91, The New York Times
"I worked very hard, fought very hard to get adequate support to the contras, the freedom fighters . . . I have no regrets about my role [Nicaragua]." - Colin Powell, National Security Advisor, Reagan Administration
. . . "Most Americans believe that "getting kids off to the right start" should be our number one national priority. Yet, despite our best intentions, one of the great ironies of America today is the extent to which our youth are not getting the nurture they need to grow up into successful adults." - General Colin Powell, Founding Chairman of "America's Promise: A Crusade for Youth", full text at America's Promise - The Alliance For Youth, http://www.americaspromise.org/GenPowellCorner/MTA.cfm
"We don't have oxygen", says a doctor from Rafiedia hospital in Nablus. "There are 14 premature babies in incubators who need oxygen and we have an additional twenty-two critically sick and injured, who desperately need oxygen." We are now working and coordinating with relevant agencies to get oxygen, which is ready, to get to the hospital. However, the truck which was supposed to pick up the oxygen was shot at and the driver had to get evacuated from the truck. Everyone is afraid that as the truck with oxygen will try to get through it will be shot at, which will explode not only the truck but also the escort. If the babies and critically sick and wounded don't get the oxygen soon, they will all die." - Arjan El Fassed, eyewitness in Ram, Occupied Palestine, 04/09/02, from Premature Babies Without Oxygen In Nablus, full text at http://www.electronicintifada.net/diaries/index.html
. . . "Responding to increasingly urgent pleas from President Bush, Israel began to withdraw this morning from two conquered West Bank towns, but Prime Minister Ariel Sharon insisted earlier that military attacks on other Palestinian towns and refugee camps would continue "until the mission is completed." "Let us hope that this is not a little bit of this and a little bit of that, but the beginning of a pullback," Powell said in Morocco at the start of his Middle East mission." - The Washington Post, 04/09/02
is a new Israeli lie because, as they pulled back, they tightened the siege
on the two cities and entered new areas." - Yasser Abed Rabbo, Palestinian
Information Minister, The Washington Post
"This is a reoccurring sentiment in Palestinian society - the false withdrawal is being pointed to whenever the attacks on Jenin and Nablus are mentioned.
Furthermore, according to Dr. Mustafa Barghouthi, this also provides the Israeli army with an opportunity to expand further their operations and invasions; numerous villages have been invaded, such as Doura near Hebron, and Aboun and Arruara, both near Ramallah.
The attack on Doura came at 3AM today, when approximately 50 Israeli tanks attacked and entered the village, killing three Palestinians. Two of the three killed, Aaref Muhammaed Saed Ahmad and his cousin Nair Saed Ahmad were both shot and wounded, but medical staff were prevented access to them until 11:30AM - by which time they had both bled to death. Houses were entered and searched, doors blown up, people detained without reason - the same things that have occurred for the past 11 days as Israel has systematically assaulted the towns and cities of the West Bank.
The situation in the Jenin refugee camp and the city of Nablus are currently indescribable. A doctor from Nablus tells how he has received numerous phone calls from residents who are trying to prevent dogs from eating the corpse of Muhammad Abu Khatib, a 40 year old man whose body has lain in the streets since the 3rd of April; medical teams are prevented to reach him and many others.
In Hawwara, near Nablus, Israeli soldiers shot dead Samir Wakat after he was released from Israeli detention. This is the second instance of a detainee being shot after release." - Patricia Smith, eyewitness in Beit Hanina, 04/09/02, full text at http://electronicintifada.net/diaries/archives/00000086.shtml
. . . "The Israeli army is pulling out of two Palestinian cities, keeping a pledge made Monday for a limited withdrawal from parts of the West Bank." - CNN, 04/09/02 "He [Bush] also praised the beginning of an Israeli withdrawal from occupied Palestinian areas, saying he hoped it was "the beginning of the end" of the spiraling violence in the region." - The Washington Post, Associated Press, 04/09/02
"Israeli military forces and media have announced that the Israeli troops have withdrawn from the Palestinian towns of Tulkaram and Qalqiliya. This is only partially true - they have withdrawn from the town centers, but remain in complete control of the towns with a ring of tanks and other armed vehicles around them. People in Qalqiliya and Tulkaram remain isolated from the surrounding villages and towns, and no one is able to leave the cities.
the governor of Qalqiliya, Mustafa Malki said, this whole Israeli move
is an empty political manoeuvre in response to the statement of President Bush,
and because Colin Powell will come to visit the area next week.
Qalqiliya has been destroyed with sustained attacks on the infrastructure and buildings; electricity poles have been torn down, houses have come under heavy fire from tanks and helicopters, and the water pipes and sewerage networks have been destroyed. Mr. Malki estimates that about 100 people have been detained or arrested from among the numerous men rounded up and held during the invasion. The lack of water poses a serious problem; food shortage is not yet an issue as the people were able to stock up prior to the invasion - however if the siege is not lifted and access to other towns and villages permitted soon, shortages will become a problem."
The same situation has been revealed in Tulkaram with the moving back of the troops to positions surrounding the city. Izz Ad-Din Al Sharief pointed out that the tanks and Israeli troops are still surrounding the city - hardly a withdrawal. In his view the whole so-called withdrawl from Qalqiliya and Tulkaram is merely a charade - the Israeli government and army are using this to cover up the most terrible crimes that they are carrying out in Jenin and Nablus as we speak. These attacks are barbaric and have to stop immediately." - Patricia Smith, eyewitness in Beit Hanina, 04/09/02, from Israeli Withdrawl - Only Partially True, full text at http://electronicintifada.net/diaries/archives/00000086.shtml
. . . "Wrapping up a two-day open debate on the situation in the Middle East, the United Nations Security Council today began informal consultations on a draft resolution sponsored by Syria. The proposed text condemns the failure to implement Council resolutions 1402 and 1403 and, among other points, calls on Israel to effectively respect the Fourth Geneva Convention on the protection of civilians in the occupied Palestinian territory, according to UN spokesman Fred Eckhard." - UN Security Council, in session, 04/09/02
"The Israeli Defense Force has broken the following resolutions: UN resolutions 242, 338; 4th Geneva Convention; Hague Regulations; UN Code of Conduct for Law Enforcement Officials; International Covenant of Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights; Convention on Elimination of All forms of Racial Discrimination; Convention on Rights of the Child; others." - http://electronicintifada.net/
"Unprotected, that is what Palestinians are. Palestinians are unprotected against war crimes being committed against them, they are unprotected against assaults on their lives, health, and they are unprotected against torture, degrading treatment, and humiliation. The international community has failed for so long to provide international protection. Palestinians but also international organizations and various UN bodies have called for such, but the international community prefers to make written statements and verbal declarations, instead of actually preventing and protection human beings against war crimes and human rights violations. This afternoon, we received information from witnesses in Jenin refugee camp that indicate that from those Palestinians resisting the Israeli military assault on Jenin refugee camp, a number of those sought to surrender to Israeli forces and were summarily executed . . . " - Arjan El Fassed, Ram, Occupied Palestine, 04/10/02, from We fear summary executions in Jenin refugee camp, full text at http://electronicintifada.net/diaries/archives/00000089.shtml
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