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Child murders and war crimes in Gaza are being softly repackaged by the media. This must stop.

August 3, 2014 – 2:34 am | 2 Comments

Hundreds of children that were alive a few short weeks ago in Gaza are dead – their deaths were no accident or an act of god, they were killed by munitions launched by the Israeli Defence Force, weapons that deliberately …

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Child murders and war crimes in Gaza are being softly repackaged by the media. This must stop.

August 3, 2014 – 2:34 am | 2 Comments

Hundreds of children that were alive a few short weeks ago in Gaza are dead – their deaths were no accident or an act of god, they were killed by munitions launched by the Israeli Defence Force, weapons that deliberately targeted civilian areas, schools and hospitals.

Some of the children died while they slept, some are maimed and suffer heartrending injuries, countless others have lost parents, brothers, sisters and surely all the children of Gaza will be scarred for life by the horror that fell from the skies.

The overall death toll is racing past 1,400

UPDATE: (as I write this article I hear that another school under the protection of the UN in South Gaza has been hit with many dead and injured, these crimes against humanity are on-going and happening right now. )

Launching shells at hospitals, schools and UN civilian shelters is a war crime. Firing indiscriminately into the densely populated areas of Gaza is a war crime. Destroying the fragile civilian infrastructure of Gaza is a war crime.

The actions of Hamas in firing rockets at Israel should also be regarded as a war crime – they were not aimed at military targets – the target was anyone who was an Israeli.

In truth the firing of low grade rockets by Hamas was an act of futile bravado – most were easily intercepted by Israel’s sophisticated defences and those that weren’t fell almost entirely in open ground. That is no excuse and those responsible should be held to account just as surely as those responsible on the Israeli side.

But the inconvenient truth is, almost nobody in Israel is in any danger from Hamas or anyone else in the Gaza strip, inconvenient because the west is complicit in supplying arms to a nation now using them for war crimes.

To listen to the mainstream media in recent weeks one could be forgiven for thinking that some ‘war’ was taking place between two titanic foes in Gaza and that the daily slaughter of hundreds of people – nearly all of which were Palestinian civilians was just an anomalous and curious detail. This is a shameful distortion of the truth.

A Palestinian holds his daughters, Shada and Lama al-Ejla, injured in an Israeli tank attack

Hamas seeks the destruction of Israel, sections of the Israeli government and military seek the destruction of Palestine, but only Israel has sophisticated missile defences, one of the strongest collections of military might in the world and the support of powerful friends.

Its not hard to see that the combination of entrenched hatred and the military power imbalance that the West has so enthusiastically created, was always going to end tragically for the children of Gaza.

 In a truly dreadful article in today’s Guardian - Michael Cohen happily muddles the innocent civilians of Gaza with Hamas and then conflates everyone living in Israel with hawks in the Israeli cabinet – using one sweeping generalisation to fit all… 

 “the inability of the US to stop the fighting has been a tough blow to US diplomacy and a further reminder that both Israelis and Palestinians are more interested in doing what they believe is in their narrow interests than they are in listening to the United States.”

Really Michael, really – all Palestinians, all Israelis? I suppose all the dead of Gaza and Israel have only themselves to blame in that case? Shameful. 

Michael then repeats Israeli government propaganda as though it were literal fact including this priceless commentary:

“for Israel, which stumbled into a war that it clearly didn’t want to wage”

Given the ferocity of the assault by the IDF and the bellicose language of the Israeli government, my credulity is stretched to breaking point. If Michael has any supporting material for this extraordinary assertion he offers none – but in the current media climate he doesn’t need to – examples of these lazy conflations and distortions are everywhere. 

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With wicked and shameful cynicism, the mainstream western media is repackaging child murders and war crimes into a fog of war scenario that is more palatable to vested interests and the powerful Israeli lobbying machine.

Incredibly the impotent Hamas rockets are to be blamed for the civilian slaughter in Gaza, which is the most blatant example of journalistic distortion I think I have ever seen and not coincidentally, the same spin offered by the Israeli government. While most, newspapers, politicians and TV pundits hold the line, the public isn’t convinced – with 62% in a recent UK poll convinced that Israel IS guilty of war crimes in Gaza.

Michael Cohen bereft of a truthful narrative upon which to base the rightful demand for international sanctions and legal proceedings against the guilty, predictably wrings his hands in despair:

So how does this end? Your guess is as good as mine. Increasingly, it’s hard to escape the sad and horrifying reality that maybe, it never will.

But I refuse to despair – I still believe that the sheer weight of international public disgust and horror at the slaughter in Gaza may yet pull the region back from the abyss.

  • If you believe that the Israeli bombing of children, asleep in a school designated as a U.N. shelter is a war crime then share this article.
  • If you believe that Hamas firing rockets blindly at Israel is a war crime then share this article.
  • If you believe that we are being wilfully misled about the truth in Gaza by the mainstream media then share this article.

If a line is not drawn here – then we lay the ground for the next series of war crimes.

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Join a protest in support of justice in Gaza near you – There will be a national march in London on the 9th August – visit the Stop The War website for details.

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My deepest fear is that we have now set the stage for the ethnic cleansing of the Palestinian people in Gaza.  

Israel has the military might to unleash a catastrophe of unimaginable horror and we must act now to preclude any possibility of things getting worse.

The west has supplied the weapons to Israel and if we now also choose to look the other way while horrific war crimes are committed with those weapons, then we should not be surprised when the horrors of tomorrow are even worse than the horrors of today.

John Lynch

RIP David Clapson, Another Man ‘Helped’ To Death By Iain Duncan Smith

July 28, 2014 – 7:15 pm | Comments Off

 
When Funghi, the unemployed alcoholic  featured in the recent Benefits Street television series, disclosed that he had been abused as a child, most of those condemning him on twitter did not even blink.  Such is …

MP’s Scrounging Is Out Of Control: Cap Esther McVey’s Housing Benefit

July 28, 2014 – 3:42 pm | Comments Off

MPs are being handed huge subsidies to rent second homes in London whilst thousands of the capital’s poorest residents are being socially cleansed due to slashed benefits and soaring rents.
Unemployment Minister Esther McVey claimed a …

Ecuador Doused In Oil, Two Months After Drilling Begins [Amazon Watch]

July 28, 2014 – 2:18 pm | Comments Off

After Ecuador issued a permit to drill for oil in Yasuni National Park in May, there’s already been one of its largest oil spills.  
On July 2, state-owned oil company Petroamazonas spilled 660,000 gallons of oil into the …

Debunking Israel’s 11 Main Myths About Gaza, Hamas and War Crimes [Medhi Hasan]

July 28, 2014 – 2:06 pm | Comments Off

You’ve got to hand it to Israeli spinners like Mark Regev. They are masters of PR. In fact, as the Independent‘s Patrick Cockburn revealed over the weekend, “the playbook they are using is a professional, …

We Need Electoral Reform To Save Our Democracy [Natalie Bennett - Green Party]

July 28, 2014 – 12:40 pm | Comments Off

After the massive loss of the Alternative Vote referendum in 2011, I spent a lot of time saying to downcast electoral reformists “don’t say ‘this kills reform for a generation’”. My argument had two parts: 1. This isn’t …

‘Let’s party!’ says Middle East peace envoy Tony Blair as Israel carpet bombs Gaza

July 28, 2014 – 10:28 am | Comments Off

WHERE was Middle East peace envoy last week as Israel invaded Gaza and committed horrific war crimes, killing over 1000 Palestinians, 80% of them civilians, 200 of them children?
Not at his official residence and office …

Whatever Israel says, why it is impossible for Hamas to use human shields in Gaza

July 26, 2014 – 9:42 am | Comments Off

 
Israel has a pathological disregard for the humanity of Palestinians and you can’t use human shields against an enemy that doesn’t recognise you as human.
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WHAT does it mean to use human shields? Employed by the …

Gaza: If we don’t protest – blood is on our hands too

July 25, 2014 – 2:14 pm | Comments Off

Surely the UK complicity in the slaughter in Gaza is something that no ethical Briton should tolerate?
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We all know that money and realpolitik drive UK foreign policy.
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We all know that the Foreign Office ensures that our relations with other nations are never polluted …

Academics call for Gaza ceasefire and just peace agreement

July 25, 2014 – 10:34 am | Comments Off

 
Hilik Bar (A thirst for Israeli blood, 21 July) reduces the charge against Israel to killing too many Palestinians. The story is more complicated. The government of Israel, having provoked the firing of rockets by …

The Tory donor whose firm is one of Britain’s biggest tax avoiders – with HMRC’s blessing [Independent]

July 25, 2014 – 9:58 am | Comments Off

One of the Tories’ biggest donors and a major contributor to the Scottish “No” campaign runs a vast oil-trading company which has potentially avoided UK corporate taxes on billions of pounds of profit with the …

‘BBC shame on you’- Demonstrations take place against the BBC’s coverage of Gaza and Israel

July 25, 2014 – 9:36 am | Comments Off

Approximately 5,000 protesters gathered outside the British Broadcasting Corporation’s (BBC) studios on Tuesday to protest the news outlets coverage of the ongoing conflict between Hamas and Israel.
Protestors accuse the BBC of showing bias towards …

Undercover police spied on grieving families of De Menezes, Groce and Reel [Guardian]

July 23, 2014 – 7:43 pm | Comments Off

Undercover police gathered intelligence on grieving families who were battling the Metropolitan police for justice, including the relatives of Jean Charles de Menezes, Cherry Groce and Ricky Reel.
Police have approached the three families, inviting them …

Plans to Shackle Industrial Action Have a More Sinister Purpose

July 21, 2014 – 10:46 am | Comments Off

So now we know what the Conservative manifesto will say about industrial action.

Strike ballots will require a 50% turn out to be valid. Breaches of the picketing code of practice will be criminalised. A whole new list …

Liars! The National Charity Who Are Deceiving The Public About Their Role In Workfare

July 21, 2014 – 8:40 am | Comments Off

 

Some of the UK’s largest charities have a dirty little workfare secret and one of the best known has even resorted to telling bare-faced lies about their involvement in forced work.
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In a statement on their …

Chris Hedges interviews Noam Chomsky [VIDEO]

July 19, 2014 – 7:39 pm | Comments Off

 
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Western powers that arm Israel are complicit in war crimes against Palestinians

July 19, 2014 – 11:49 am | Comments Off

 
Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Noam Chomsky, Ken Loach, Brian Eno, many more call for comprehensive military embargo on Israel, like that imposed on Apartheid South Africa.

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Israel has once again unleashed the full force of its military …

What is the TTIP? New booklet explains all

July 19, 2014 – 11:35 am | Comments Off

The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) is a comprehensive free trade and investment treaty currently being negotiated – in secret – between the European Union and the USA. As officials from both sides acknowledge, …

Who fights the good fight exactly? No-one I know.

July 17, 2014 – 11:35 am | Comments Off

On the front page of the World Justice Movement are two taglines.
The first says they are ‘world justice campaigners’ and the other invites visitors to “Join us in the fight for economic justice and an …

Cuts to legal aid force parents to defend themselves in family court cases [Independent]

July 16, 2014 – 9:49 am | Comments Off

The number of parents forced to represent themselves before the family courts jumped by 20,000 last year following the withdrawal of legal aid for almost all family cases, official figures obtained by The Independent show.

 

The …

Nestlé’s water privatization push

July 15, 2014 – 9:22 pm | Comments Off

 
Nestlé’s water privatization push
Across the globe, Nestlé is pushing to privatize and control public water resources.
Nestlé’s Chairman of the Board, Peter Brabeck, has explained his philosophy with “The one opinion, which I think is extreme, …

Bedroom tax bites as low-income tenants choose between ‘heat or eat’ [Guardian]

July 15, 2014 – 4:49 pm | Comments Off

 
Thousands of low-income tenants have been plunged into “heat or eat” hardship as a result of the bedroom tax, a government-commissioned analysis of the policy’s impact reveals.
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The study, published by the Department for Work and …

The British government is terrorizing the public into accepting its snooping law [Robin Tudge]

July 15, 2014 – 2:48 pm | Comments Off

Our government is blasting a new law onto the books, out of the blue. Under the guise of a pincer movement from Syrian jihadists and British paedophiles, it is trying to terrorize its citizens into …

TTIP is an affront to democracy

July 15, 2014 – 2:32 pm | Comments Off

Prime minister David Cameron loves to portray himself as the defender of British sovereignty in his dealings with the EU. But as the volume of his anti-EU posturing increases, he is busy pushing for a …

Anti-Dollar Alliance Prepares Launch Of BRICS Bank

July 15, 2014 – 1:47 pm | Comments Off

Three months ago we discussed in detail the growing anti-dollar hegemony alliances that were building across the BRICS countries (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa). Their efforts at the time, to create a structure …

New website unpicks the lies of Iain Duncan Smith & the DWP

July 15, 2014 – 8:50 am | Comments Off

 
DWP Unspun – a new website from False Economy
The Department for Work and Pension’s combination of cuts and incompetence has been toxic for all sorts of struggling and, indeed, “hardworking” people it would prefer you …

The politics of our intimacy are our own – love can heal our atomised society if we embrace eachother in new ways

July 14, 2014 – 6:14 pm | Comments Off

Is consumerism related to our private lives?
Many people have noted the inevitable way that sex is sold, through pornography, prostitution and the myriad sex aids, products and services that fill sex shops and online …

The Lib Dems have a future, but Clegg’s neo-liberals are finished [Kevin Meagher]

July 14, 2014 – 12:05 pm | Comments Off

In rediscovering the value of wielding influence rather than power, the Lib Dems should reconnect with their social democratic heritage.
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Where did it all go wrong for Nick Clegg and the Liberal Democrats? Therein lies a …

Fighting austerity: why we need to talk about human rights [Alice Donald]

July 14, 2014 – 11:43 am | Comments Off

Since 1945, the welfare state has protected people in the UK from falling below an essential threshold of decency due to age, infirmity or circumstances beyond their control. Austerity and social security reforms are tearing …

Renewing Public Ownership

July 14, 2014 – 11:29 am | Comments Off

Since 1979 the privatisation and marketization policies of successive governments have delivered the economy into the hands of a narrow set of vested corporate and financial interests. The consequences are that decision-making is geared towards …