Palestine: Plus ça change…

I had been worried about this even amidst the euphoria of Obama’s election, as his pre-election kowtowing to AIPAC had given a foretaste of things to come, i.e. that in terms of US-Israel nothing would change in the post-Bush era. And indeed it looks like we are going down the same old road, a sad turn of events as the recent visit of Benjamin Netanyahu has shown. Here are … Read more Palestine: Plus ça change…

Sunday Reads

Some Sunday morning reads (& an added game): JG Ballard’s last short story, The Dying Fall, just published by the Guardian, here. J.G. Ballard in 2007 There’s more pictures & writing on Ballard here. * If into French, check out Pierre Assouline’s Le Monde sponsored literary blog La République des livres here. I always find a couple wortwhile pieces to read there each week. Most recently an excellent piece on Pierre … Read more Sunday Reads


Operation Cast Lead *  by Clayton Eshleman [In this piece Clayton Eshleman synthesizes a number of reports on the Gaza atrocities, to create an accurate & horrifying report on what happened when the Israeli army invaded. Given the short historical memory — a true if invisible plague in a country where news is instant sound-bytes with 5-minute shelf lives — even among those who claim liberal or leftist convictions, it is important to … Read more OPERATION CAST LEAD

Obama's Bubble of Ignorance

Solving Palestine While Israel Destroys It By KATHLEEN and BILL CHRISTISON To a greater degree than perhaps ever before, Washington today is engulfed in denial about Israel and its stupefying behavior, about its murderous policies toward the Palestinians, about the efforts of Israel and its U.S. defenders to force us to ignore its atrocities.  Blinders have always been part of the attire of U.S. policymakers and politicians with regard … Read more Obama's Bubble of Ignorance

Mearsheimer on Charles Freeman

To stay with Israel/Palestine matters: back here in the good old USA it looks very much as if Obama’s policies in regard to Palestine are & will remain the same old AIPAC-directed blind pro-Israel stuff. In the current London Review of Books, John Mearsheimer publishes an excellent analysis of the Freeman debacle, but he also has some sense that the AIPAC front my be ever so slightly breached — … Read more Mearsheimer on Charles Freeman

'Shooting and crying' — The Gaza Massacres

The sordid details concerning the Gaza massacres are slowly emerging via soldiers & officers of the Israeli army and excellent investigative reporting by concerned Israelis.  You can find detailed accounts in Haaretz and an piece by Gideon Levy reprinted in Tikkun. Below, an extract from the testimony of one Israeli soldier from last Friday’s Haaretz account. Aviv: “I am squad commander of a company that is still in training, from the … Read more 'Shooting and crying' — The Gaza Massacres

Gideon Levy to A.B. Yehoshua

A ceasefire, yes. But it will not hold. Israel or Hamas — & it doesn’t matter which one it is, finally — will find an excuse to break it. Tomorrow Obama: in relation to Palestine I am not holding my breath. Plus ça change… Wish I were wrong… Here from Haaretz, a useful piece of thinking — as a response to an article by the writer A.B. Yehoshua — … Read more Gideon Levy to A.B. Yehoshua

373 Palestinians killed by Israeli forces in 2007

Palestinian relatives of two brothers and Hamas fighters, Mohammed and Zeyad Abu Anzai, mourn during their funeral in the southern Gaza Strip, 1 December 2007. (Wissam Nassar/MaanImages) B’Tselem today releases its year-end report. According to B’Tselem data, the number of Israelis and Palestinians killed in clashes in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip dropped. However, there has been deterioration in many other measures of the human rights situation … Read more 373 Palestinians killed by Israeli forces in 2007

More re: Debray on Palestine

Since translating & posting the extract of Régis Debray’s article on Palestine that appeared in Le Monde Diplomatique, I discovered that said monthly now has an online English edition in which you can read the whole article (under the title: “Palestine: a policy of deliberate blindness”) in a slicker translation than my own quick home-made version. Though I would like to point out some short-cuts taken by that translation. … Read more More re: Debray on Palestine

Régis Debray on Palestine

The current issue of Le Monde Diplomatique (August 2007 – #641) reprints a paper the previous [Chirac] government of France had asked the writer and philosopher Régis Debray to provide after, a fact finding tour of Palestine. Debray himself says that the piece is a “note diplomatique” (involving “concision and circonspection”) and so the language is rather guarded and far from radical/militant. And yet, the very description of the … Read more Régis Debray on Palestine