Last week, at the height of Operation Cast Lead, a group of Israeli firemen threw their hats into the political ring, albeit in somewhat undiplomatic and uncivilised fashion. During a peaceful anti-war vigil outside a Tel Aviv air force base, several members of the fire brigade turned on one protester, drenching her relentlessly with water from their hoses, before approaching her and ordering her into the station in order to "give us all head".
The more we lump terrorist groups together and draw the battle lines as a simple binary struggle between moderates and extremists, or good and evil, the more we play into the hands of those seeking to unify groups with little in common. Terrorist groups need to be tackled at root, interdicting flows of weapons and finance, exposing the shallowness of their claims, channelling their followers into democratic politics.
The "war on terror" also implied that the correct response was primarily military. But as General Petraeus said to me and others in Iraq, the coalition there could not kill its way out of the problems of insurgency and civil strife.
The US has to re-route arms shipment to Israel as Athens declined to allow a Greek port be used as a transit point, fearing nationwide protests.
Opposition parties in Greece have called for public demonstrations in Astakos on Wednesday and Thursday, raising fears of fresh nationwide protests, only weeks after violent anti-government riots were subdued.
The Central Elections Committee (CEC) yesterday banned the Arab parties United Arab List-Ta'al and Balad from running in next month's parliamentary elections amid accusations of racism from Arab MKs. Both parties intend to challenge the decision in the Supreme Court. Members of the CEC conceded yesterday that the chance of the Supreme Court's upholding the ban on both parties was slim.
Arab faction delegates in the CEC walked out of the hall before the vote, shouting, "this is a fascist, racist state." As they walked out, CEC deputy chairman MK David Tal (Kadima) and the Arab delegates pushed each other and a Knesset guard had to intervene and separate them.
TVNL Comment: Democracy at its best, right? Just asking....
President Bush deflected a secret request by Israel last year for specialized bunker-busting bombs it wanted for an attack on Iran’s main nuclear complex and told the Israelis that he had authorized new covert action intended to sabotage Iran’s suspected effort to develop nuclear weapons, according to senior American and foreign officials.
TVNL Comment: Would the US or Israel allow "covert operations' by any other nation to disrupt their nuclear facilities? Just asking....
Israel has taken a battering in the global media battle over its war on Gaza, despite deploying a propaganda campaign that used Youtube and blogs, experts said.
Populations and even governments worldwide have slammed the Israeli military onslaught on the Gaza Strip, with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon condemning attacks near UN schools that killed dozens and foreign media angry at being kept out of the Palestinian territory.
With images of parents carrying lifeless children to overwhelmed hospitals dominating international media, angry protests have been staged in major capitals and Israeli websites have reportedly come under cyber attack.
TVNL Comment: We should expect some kind of false flag cyber-terrorism that will result in a lock down of the Internet.
Israel is believed to be using controversial white phosphorus shells to screen its assault on the heavily populated Gaza Strip yesterday. The weapon, used by British and US forces in Iraq, can cause horrific burns but is not illegal if used as a smokescreen.
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