Welcome, one and all, step this way up ye olde boarding ramp. Please take your seats for another excursion courtesy of the Weekend Holyland Update. Your in-flight entertainment today will include(in no particular order) some journalistic fuckups, an environmental catastrophe, diplomatic suicide, PR suicide, land theft, infanticide, necrophilia, corruption, petty police brutality and major spook mendacity. Please fasten your seatbelts and refrain from popping any alternative medicinal pills, the captain
has turned on the no herbs sign.
Noam Chomsky, world renowned linguist and political malcontent extraordinaire, was refused entry into Israel on Sunday, May 16 (or rather, refused entry by Israel into the Paltustinian Authority, all entrances into which are controlled by Israel). Official Israel was uncharacteristically quick to realize what immensely putrid PR doodoo it had stepped in and announced that the denial of passage was a mistake. Kick-ass Israeli blogger Didi Remez writes that "Interior Ministry sources said the official overstepped her authority and was reprimanded. Sources in the Interior Ministry noted that the official made the decision on the basis of her familiarity with the person’s activity and the fact that he is considered an extreme leftist." I wonder if the overstepping official happens to be a suicide blond? Another paper has the interior ministry (which oversees border crossings) claiming that the IDF told them to bar Chomsky's entry... Anyway, former judicial star Boaz Ukon, who was blocked from the Supreme Court by the cabal of mediocre clowns currently in control there and is now legal editor at Yediot (Israel's most popular rag), sees the Chomsky affair as part of a trend that "could mark the end of Israel as a freedom-loving state of law"
Remember the two Arab-Israeli citizens, who were arrested and whom the secret police attempted to hold in secret until the international media on one hand and yours truly on the other made a mockery of this effort, publishing the terribly verbotten names of Ameer Makhoul (who still hasn't seen a lawyer, btw, 11 days after his arrest and a week after the stasi oh-so-graiously allowed his arrest to be reported to the people) and Dr. Omar Sayid? Well, thanks to a cross-Atlantic sleuthing correspondence between yours truly and the excellent Richard Silverstein, the following details have come to light:
The "foreign agent"/"Hizballah agent" Makhoul and Sayid are accused of meeting and being in contact with is Hassan Ja'ja', a Lebanese national, environmental activist and flower merchant/landscape gardening-firm owner. He is married to Razan Zuayter, daughter of renowned Palestinian author and historian Akram Zuayter, who now runs the Arab Group for Protection of Nature (APN) which her husband founded and is still active in. The couple live in Amman with their three children, and both are members of a facebook group which opposes the Syrian domination of Lebanon, which is kind of anathema for hizballah. Now, of course, this could mean he's just a deviant undercover hizballah agent. However, two things make this unlikely:
1) Jordan is not a hospitable abode for hizballah, and its intelligence service is quite good. It is unlikely that shabak know a resident of their capital is a hizballah recruiter but they don't, that Israel isn't sharing that information, and that if the information is valid they aren't doing anything about it.
2) Our Stasi have already attempted to make this guy out to be a hizballah recruiter. In January of this year Jamal Juma'a, a Palestinian human rights activist from the Stop The Wall group was charged before a MILITARY tribunal (less defendant rights, lower burden of proof) with having met this same Hassan Ja'ja' in Amman, where Ja'ja' tried to recruit him to hizballah. Despite this fairytale being supporte by a third man who was allegedly at the very recruiting meeting, Juma'a was released after a single six-day remand extension (in Israel the first remand requested by authorities, even against citizens and particularly against occupied Palestinians, is almost a total gimme).
So, why DOES the stasi want to criminalize contact with this man? Well, maybe becaue his organization supports Arab farmers who try to resist the confiscation of their land. Maybe because the ANP donated money to Ittijah, the Arab ngo-umbrella group headed by Makhoul. And maybe it's just a convenient excuse to nail Makhoul, an outspoken man who is active in pushing for the financial, diplomatic and cultural boycott of Israel (BDS) around the world. Oh, almost forgot - Ja'ja's wife, Razan Zuayter, took the very unusual step in the Arab world of addressing Israeli accusations of the sort and published an open letter in Jordanian newspaper al-Ghad, stating flatly that she and her husband have absolutely nothing to do with hizballah, and that these allegations are merely a part of Israel's attempts to sever connections between Palestinians in the homeland and those abroad. I concur, myself.
A day after we at Youpost published these latest revelations, Haaretz also noticed the open letter and reported on it (using only euphemisms and explaining it was still forbidden by big brother to mention the actual name), making an embarrassing transcription mistake in the process and also calling Ms. Zuayter "wife of the Hizballah agent", before saying she denied her husband being any such thing. What about a little "alleged" there, MSM bigshots?
(and while we're ragging Haaretz, check out this. Who knew they were hit that bad by subscribers leaving in protest over the Anat Kamm affair?)
Continuing with trumpeting my own horn (the website of which I am editor in Chief is the only one with the balls to flout the gag order and report any details it finds about the Makhoul case...), we had another exclusive, albeit somewhat less important, regarding law-enforcement abuse. On Friday afternoon, a bunch of stoners (including some good friends of mine) converged on Rabin Square in Tel Aviv, where despite a pretty harsh heat wave they protested for some 3.5 hours against Israel's stupid, US-inspired drug laws, and also against the horrible, very bad, no good at all and MidEast-wide cannabis shortage. No buds or hash can be had almost anywhere, and what can be had is expensive as hell. I suspect crop failure. Egypt is hit bas as well. Grrrrr. Anyway, after almost 4 hours of peaceful protest along come the pesky porkers and start violently arresting folks. 15 were dragged away to the station at around 15:00. At around 19:00 (a full hour after Israeli law says a detainee must be formally arrested and given a phone call or released) most were released. Four were kept till the wee hours. At 01:00 (tem hours after the arrest, still no phone call, not even meeting an officer as law requires) the following exchange took place:
An hour later, two of the four were released on bail, and two were held overnight and brought before a judge in the morning. Of these two, one was released by the judge and one held over another day and a half and then released. All for no reason and with trampling of rights and laws throughout. We're waiting for an official comment from the pigsty.
Several Palestinians "found their death", as IDF spokesman famously used to put it, over the past week. In the least egregious of these cases, a teenager was shot by a settler for hurning rocks with a sling at the guy's car, in which his family including a baby were sitting. I say least because despite the fact that the settler is fair game and sholdn't fucking be there, rocks hurled by a sling are not a child's toy, can kill and if someone hurls one at my baby I'ma shoot them too. Boy had a right to resist the occupier, but occupier also had a biologically-driven right to defend his young. Moving along to utterly defenseless killings: A baby died from inhaling tear gas in a Hebron, where the thugs fired the gas to enforce the perpetual curfew in the "divided" city (divided between 80 thousand "Ismaelites" who can't open shops in their main streat, and 500 of the chosen people). A 75 year-old man was shot to death from across the fence in Gaza. There was another one, I think, cause I read somewhere of four deaths in all, but it's getting hard to keep track. Oh, yeah, there was another baby who died from tear gas - this one in his own home, from a gas canister fired in his village which landed under his window. This one was particularly galling because the news reports in Hebrew about it were saying that the gas was fired at a Palestinian demonstration that was endangering a nearby settlement - and nobody at the news desks aw the disconnect. This is because it is standard operating procedure for the army to chase protesters from where the original protest began (say the separation wall) and then keep attacking with gas and rubber bullets inside the village. So the gas that killed the baby was not necessary for anyone's safety.
The ultra-religious are still going ape over the Roman era (non Jewish) graves that were dug up so that the southern city of Ashkelon could have a fortified ER in the event of resumed rocket attacks from the neighboring Gaza Strip. They have moved their violent protests to Jerusalem and other towns. In Jerusalem, the city responded by suspending municipal services till they chill the fuck out. Can't blame them. If you're gonna make your hood a death trap on defiant purpose, people are gonna refuse to walk in. This is what happens when you nurture the Jehovah virus. Speaking of the virus - some of the more severe cases are talking about "laying a curse" on PM Binyamin von Bibhausen. This would be merely chuckle-worthy if not for the fact that the murder of PM Yitzhak Rabin was preceded by the issuing of the same sort of religious curse. The leaders of the ultra-Jehovist camp are disowning the cursing talk. Then again, they did back then, too.
The River Jordan is dying, due to overuse by Israel, Jordan and Syria. The Jordan was never a mighty river (there are stories of Zionist pioneers crying and going into depression upon seeing it for the first time, having come from Eastern Europe and expecting actual Don, Dnjeper and Volga-like rivers, and also an urban myth about a guy who drowned himself in the unimpressive stream just to prove that it could actually be done. Still, without it the Dead Sea (Just one of the 7 natural wonders of the world) will die out completely (it's already in miserable condition because of the dam we've erected at where the Lake of Galilee flows into the Jordan, so as to provide water for most of the country). But the Dead Sea is the least of our problems. Millions of people who subsist on agriculture along the banks of Jordan will not be able to if the Jordan dries out.
Israel has been accepted into the OECD, and all sorts of yahoos tried to seize on this as proof-positive that we are not only an economic powerhouse (like longtime members Greece and Iceland, ya know), but also a totally enlightened democratic country - and never mind that Russia is also up for membership, and we all know how open and democratic IT is. But anyway, people were all happy that the efforts to block Israel's acceptance to the august club were blocked, and failed to realize that now the continued membership (which is up for review in a year) can be heldf over Israel like a whip. If having failed to gain acceptance could have been excused as due to economic parameters, being thrown out will undeniably be due to the occupation. Besides, OECD membership ain't gonna make joe blow on the Israeli street one bit richer.
This gay guy had kids by a surrogate mother in India. He applied for a tissue exam to prove that the resulting twins are his flesh and blood, so he could bring them home. The judge happens to be a bona-fide Jehovah patient, skull-cap and all, where they don't like surrogacy and don't like gays having or raising kids. So he refused. Reason? "The father may be a pedophile, or a serial killer." Yup. Judge won't budge, Interior Minister Eli Yishai is rejecting Bibi's order that he let the man bring his children home. Cause Jehovah said so, and this is Jehovah's country, not the people's.
Update: Score one for the people. Jehovaist judge caved in the face of pressure and ordered to have the tissue test performed. Mr. Goldberg should be bringing his baby twins home within a few days. Power to the people does not come with a standard plug, but sometimes it does come.
Three postal workers have been hospitalized with itching after touching some white powder that was in a package. the post office in question has been shut down pending investigation.
Our racist, very probably Russian plant foreign minister Yvette Lieberman hasn't picked a fight in a while, so he's decided to go after Saudi Arabia, whining that they are behind the efforts to boycott Israel around the world. Actually, to the best of my knowledge that effort is more grassroots than that. But even if so, what Liebermouse won't tell you is that this is only happening after Saudi Arabia put its prestige on the line to author a ground-breaking peace proposal back in 2002, offering Israel EVERYTHING it ever asked for. When someone offers you everything you want, after a very long time when no-one would, even if their asking price is a little high, basic sanity requires that you show polite appreciation for the offer and make a counter-suggestion. Not ignore it like it didn't exist. When you ignore it, pissing in the face of the offer-maker, as it were, don't come fucking whining that they resort to pressure to get you to do what THEY want out of the deal. So now Liebermouse wants to pick a fight with them, and never mind that if we do actually ever want (he wants) or need (who knows) to bomb Iran, we need flyover rights from the Saudis. But Liebermouse don't care. He's about pride.
The IDF is totally ignoring the Supreme Court's decree that Palestinians be allowed to use Rte 443, which goes over their land that was confiscated to pave it. Because the army runs this country, not the law.
Finally, Knesset member Taleb a-Sana, who delights in testing the very limits of legitimate protest, dissent, and so on, applied for a new diplomatic passport, claiming he lost the old one. Now, shit happens, but Taleb has lost five passports in five years. Liebermouse wants to look into all these incidents of misplacing documents before he issues MK a-Sana his sixth diplomatic passport in as many years. a-Sana is being all defiant and shit, saying Liebermouse doesn't have the right to deny him a passport. Actually that's an interesting question, to be resolved by the courts, but just as a broken clock tells the right time twice a day, the child beater kinda has a point here.
And on that horological note, your captain shall now go gouge his eyes out with a rosebush from the nurseries of the terrible garden-shear terrorist and let the autopilot bring her in for landing to your original points of departure, which should be looking far less pathetic in comparison or you should seriously be considering relocation. WHU airlines is not responsible for any illusions, sympathies or misconceptions that may have been misplaced on our tours. Please collect your luggage and check your comments and thumbs. Thank you for flying the crazy skies.