~Violence against Palestinians by Settlers is up 152% while violence against Israelis via terrorist attacks [by Palestinians] is down 96%. That number does NOT include the increasing violence against Palestinians by the Israeli Defense Forces. If it did, the number would be off the charts. Interesting that the MSM, and the U.S. government, continue with the fiction that only Israelis have security needs. Also, why is violence against Israelis always called terrorism but when Palestinians are killed by Settlers it’s just called unfortunate?
~The recent Zogby poll on Arab attitudes, which I wrote about earlier in the week, shows that contrary to administration and Israel Lobby talking points, Arab countries do not see the potential for Iran to obtain nuclear weapons as the number one threat in the region. Rather, they are more concerned about occupation and the ongoing security risk that poses. This is important because much was made of the Arab world’s stated fear of Iran in the the selective reporting by the U.S. media after the WikiLeaks docu-dump. But in addition to cherry-picking which cables they would focus on, the media (primarily the NYT) didn’t provide context, nor did they show the cables which discussed the Arab world’s ongoing frustration with the the United States’ unquestioning support for Israel. Saudi Arabia, Bahrain etc. have long hated Iran, for ethnic and cultural reasons. They would like nothing more than the United States (not Israel) to “take care of” Iran, irrespective of whether they ever get nuclear weapons or not. Iran is a thorn in the side of all the Sunni countries. This is not “news.” This is simply a long-standing fact in the region.
~The anti-boycott law passed by the Israeli Knesset is a huge step backwards for Israel and it has demonstrated once and for all that Israel’s democracy is under attack, not by Palestinians or Iranians or “delegitimizer’s” but by Israel’s far-right government. It’s the kind of law one would expect to see in a country like China or Syria, not the Middle East’s lone democracy. Even conservative Israel apologist Jeffrey Goldberg wrote in the Atlantic that the U.S. Jewish community needs to boycott Netanyahu. And then of course, when the ADL’s Abe Foxman speaks out against something Israel does, you know it’s bad. I’m going to write more about this issue later because there is a lot to this that the U.S. media is simply ignoring because it calls into question many of our assumptions about Israel, Netanyahu and the status of the peace process.
~Ever wonder how the Israel Lobby manages to get all it’s talking points into the media? Well, it’s groups like AIPAC, but also groups like this. This group, which is partly funded by people/groups in Jerusalem, is also throwing money at the GOP for the 2012 campaign. Israel is the exception to most of the campaign finance rules about foreign donors/countries providing money in U.S. campaigns. Of course.
~Fascinating article about how Washington’s elite foreign policy think tanks have very, very few women. Is that why our foreign policy is so militaristic? Is that why from day one Secretary of State Clinton’s focus on women was belittled by people like Les Gelb and Aaron David Miller?
~This is an outrage and the MSM are completely ignoring it and not asking the Obama administration any questions about it. Prior to killing Bin Laden, the CIA ran a fake vaccination program for children in Afghanistan in an attempt to obtain DNA from Bin Laden’s children. This article brings up some very good issues about a) the life-and-death issue of vaccinations in third world countries like Afghanistan, b) it is off limits to use the medical community for this sort of trust-killing covert operation, c) it will hurt future public health/vaccination efforts in Arab countries and d) the whole thing is completely unethical in every sense of the word. I keep waiting to hear someone like Dr. Paul Farmer or other public health gurus come out and condemn this.
~If you only read one thing in this round-up, read this. The incredible investigative journalist Jeremy Scahill at the Nation uncovered evidence that the CIA has continued to use rendition/torture at a secret CIA prison in Somalia. Not only has the MSM dutifully ignored the story, the administration has been able to use the lazy, pathetic corporate media stenographers to provide anonymous rebuttals to the story, sans any evidence. Glenn Greenwald has a great article about that here. We wonder how the Bush admin. was able to get away with so much? In a democracy the media is an important check on government power. But not so much anymore.
~Wow, can you imagine arguing that the reason the GOP debt limit debate is so disastrous is because it could hurt Israel?