Latest | Recent Articles | Multimedia Page | TV | Search | Blog

Email this article | Print this article | Link to this Article

BULLDOZERS PREPARING THE WAY FOR THE "BIG BANG"

July 11, 2001

INVASION FEVER

MID-EAST REALITIES - www.MiddleEast.Org - Washington - 7/11: It's all part of the same game. The Israelis think they have the Palestinians trapped. They publicly debate how to put them in their place with bulldozers, expulsions, invasion, awaiting the "big bang". The Palestinians don't know what to do, their own leadership having helped corner them into this no win situation and now in charge of "policing" them and "administrating" the neo-apartheid realities. The Intifada was their only hope many thought; but now it has also potentially become their nemesis threating to undo the gains they have made and the Statehood they were supposed to have now long ago...or at least so claims the "Authority".

Then there are so many other factors that come into play in the modern world when it comes to making war or peace these days: world ublic opinion, condemnations at the United Nations, possible eruptions in the Arab and Muslim worlds, potential use of weapons of mass destruction, maybe even a new oil embargo, possibly something other than total American support for the Israelis; and then of course the imponderables, the unknowns and accidents that always take place once the guns start pounding with all their might, especially in the Middle East it seems.

It's quite a complicated game now. Both Ariel Sharon and Yasser Arafat are veterans like few others. And both know that after a lifetime dedicated to this struggle to vanquish the other this may be their last time up to bat.

BIG PINES II - RUMORS ARE RIFE OF AN INVASION PLAN

By Akiva Eldar

[Ha'aretz - Tuesday, July 10, 2001] Only the fading bumper stickers from the winter campaign are left as a reminder that Ariel Sharon promised peace. Even Shimon Peres isn't talking about a new Sharon, "who doesn't want his career to end in smoke and flames." In private conversations with friends, the eternal optimist has narrowed his vision to a peace between Sharon and Yasser Arafat.

In the last few days, Peres's only excuse for his seat in the government is the holy mission to prevent war between the two. Peres warns that if he's out of the government, Sharon's invasion of the territories is a matter of weeks, if not days.

For three months there have been rumors of a new version of Big Pines (the 1982 Lebanon invasion plan), written especially for the territories. The rumor hovers over the planet like a storm, with everyone talking about it but nobody knowing if and when it shows up.

In early May, the Foreign Report section of Janes - a particularly serious journal - published details from what was purported to be Sharon's plan to reoccupy some of the West Bank's towns and once and for all put an end to the Palestinian Authority.

The report even mentioned a casualty estimate - 1,000 Palestinians and 100 Israelis. The last paragraph was the most interesting. It said that the U.S., Britain, and France have not only been informed of the plan's details but have also given Sharon a green light to strike at Arafat if the Palestinians don't cease the violence. Only the French, said the report, are opposed to any escalation.

Someone told Arafat about the report. In one of his first conversations with U.S. envoy William Burns (who's now in the region spending the weekend in Beirut), Arafat asked the American what he knew about the plan.

Burns said that Sharon didn't divulge anything to the U.S. about conquering the territories. So, in any case, said the diplomat, the U.S. government did not give any agreement, authorization or blessing to such a plan.

The clouds of war also flew with Sharon to Europe. In Paris they also apparently read the Janes report about European disagreements over a plan to get rid of Arafat.

"It's not only France that believes Arafat is your peace partner," French President Chirac and Prime Minister Jospin told Sharon. "Europe is united that a peace agreement will be reached with him, not against him and not without him." They were very polite about it, of course.

By the way, when Chief of Staff Shaul Mofaz is asked about "the plan" he shrugs and says he never saw nor heard about any plan to reoccupy the territories.

But he phrases his answer so carefully that it's hard to understand if he is also denying that his top desk drawer is holding a similar hit-and-run plan.

Members of the cabinet swear that they haven't ever been asked to approve a plan to reoccupy the territories - but they also say they won't be surprised if they hear on the radio that our troops are storming Arafat's headquarters.

Cop, judge and hangman

Along with the report from Paris about Sharon's visit, the Washington Post reported on waves of criticism against the Bush Administration in the Arab world. The newspaper, which described the Sharon visit to the U.S. capital as much less successful than what most of the Israeli reported, said that the American initiative against Saddam Hussein is being interpreted by many Arabs not as a way to defend the Gulf but "as a way to oppress the only country that has the power to threaten Israel."

U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell apparently knows what would happen to the sanctions he wants on Iraq on the day after Israel invades the territories.

In their discussions with the Europeans, the Americans sign on to every word the French told Sharon about the need to immediately start implementing the full Mitchell Report. They also agree that Sharon can not be the policeman of the cease-fire, its judge and its executioner. Would Sharon agree to Arafat's being the sole judge of whether Israel is living up to its commitments to freeze the settlements - and the one who decides how much force to use against a violation.

If it were up to Peres, he would invite the CIA to monitor the cease-fire and go immediately to the confidence-building measure stage, including economic aid to the Palestinians. Sharon, so far, refuses to hear a word about outside monitors. Around Peres they are saying that's where the cracks might grow in the national unity government - and they hope that as usual, Foreign Ministry Director General Avi Gil will whisper a wonder formula into Sharon's ear that saves the situation.

Smart sanctions - on Israel

There are signs that if it were up to Powell, he wouldn't mind using a smart sanction or two to make clear to Sharon that he can't put the key to U.S. interests in the region in the hands of any crazed Hamasnik. The instructions from the Oval Office, as of now, are to avoid direct confrontations with Sharon. That's why Powell wasn't stubborn about the monitors for the cease-fire. It's also why he makes do with State Department spokesman's statements against the targeted assassinations.

The impending arrival of Dan Kretzer as the new ambassador in Tel Aviv - and a member of the inner circle of participants in the diplomatic dance - could help Powell explain to his president the meaning of a war in the territories. Kretzer is coming here after a long term in Cairo. He knows a thing or two about the anti-American mood that the Israeli occupation inspires in the Arab capitals. Communications Minister Reuven Rivlin joked last week to outgoing U.S. Ambassador Martin Indyk that he always goes to one of Indyk's farewell parties to make sure Indyk is really going.

Kretzer will find a man after his own heart in the American consulate in Jerusalem: Ron Shlicker, who also has served in many Arab capitals. Shlicker recently appointed a special consul for urban affairs, Robert Waller. And one of Waller's first actions was to ask Meretz city councillor Meir Margalit, for an update on Ehud Olmert's plans for demolishing building without licenses.

If you add Kretzer and Shlicker to Burns, an alumnus of the Amman embassy, the result is a powerful lobby for deeper American involvement in the conflict. Rivlin and company will soon be longing for the days of Indyk and Dennis Ross.

An hour in their bedroom

A.B. Yehoshua pointed to the Palestinian neighborhood across the way. He said that he wanted to sneak in one night to one of the bedrooms to hear what the neighbors have to say about us. Toward the end of Sunday's meeting of Israeli and Palestinian intellectuals, someone stuck a Hebrew letter into Hanan Ashrawi's hands. She whispered to Dr. Ron Pundak, who was sitting beside her, that it was demolition orders from Jerusalem city hall for 25 Palestinian homes. Yesterday, not a stone remained of the bedroom the Israeli novelist wanted to see. Maybe that's what Palestinian Culture Minister Yasser Abed Rabo meant when he said that he wanted his guest from Haifa to turn into a Palestinian from Ramallah, for an hour.

The discussion in the hall in A-Ram in northeast Jerusalem sometimes felt like group therapy for aging couples who are clinging to one another with the last of their strength. "We've been through worse," Abed Rabo said, trying to be encouraging, though it was hard to tell if he was trying to convince the guests or himself. He recalled the first Intifada and Yitzhak Shamir.

Prof. Galia Golan, a Peace Now old-timer, remembered the romance of the first meetings between Israelis and Palestinians in the 1980s, when the words "Palestinian entity" stuck in the throat of Peace Now leaders. Ashrawi said that the current crisis and the effort to persuade the Israeli peace camp that there's a partner for peace is a throwback to the 1970s. Yair Tzaban, the grand old man of Meretz, seemed emotional as he recalled burying the victims of the Deir Yassin massacre and his struggle against the radical Jewish undergrounds during the War of Independence. Prof. Yuli Tamir gushed about her honeymoon with Ashrawi only a year ago, when Barak and Arafat were so close to a deal on formalizing relations between the two peoples at Camp David.

Like all of his Israeli colleagues who spoke, and like most of the Israeli "peace camp,' Amos Oz sounded like a cuckolded husband. He was promised two states for two peoples and got the Palestinian right of return to both sides of the Green Line. He knew exactly when his attitude to the Palestinians changed. He was watching the return of Arafat to Gaza from Camp David on TV and heard the crowds chanting "welcome Salah a-Din." Now he has given up the dream of one big happy family with the Palestinians and is ready to make do with prosaic neighborly relations. He said that sometimes peace and justice are opposites. A just peace for one side can be a death sentence for the other," he said.

It seems that the Palestinian intellectuals and politicians understand the way back to broken Israeli hearts is through Oz, Yehoshua, Tamir, David Grossman and Nissim Kalderone. But it's also difficult for the acting president of Bir Zeit University, Gabi Baramki, and his colleagues, to empathize with the sufferings of the occupier.

Along with the desire to start anew with the Israeli left, they don't understand why all Israelis sound like Sharon. "You've all become security fanatics." Albert Agezarian said he wouldn't be surprised if the Shin Bet would have asked to make sure it was safe to drink the lemonade served to the Israelis at the gathering.

The event ended like a blind date. Everyone said it was important to meet and to meet again and promised to stay in touch. Sure, they'll call. But they aren't so sure anything can come of it.

A joint statement was supposed to come out today. It was worked out by Yossi Beilin and Ron Pundak on the Israeli side and Ashrawi and Abed Rabbo, culture minister in the Palestinian Authority. There's a call for a cease-fire, a return to sanity, rehabilitation of the dialogue, and implementation of Mitchell in its entirety.

The problem came up, as expected, around the right of return and the Jewish indentity of Israel.

Beilin and Yuli Tamir were unable to convince Hanan Ashrawi that there's no way they'd be able to sell the Israeli public a statement that did not mention the Jewish identity of the state of Israel alongside the Palestinian state. Ashrawi, who has been consulting lately with MK Azmi Bishara, pulled out the argument of the post-Zionists: She doesn't understand how liberal Israelis can ask the Palestinians to recognize a theocracy.

Abed Rabbo spent a lot of time trying to persuade the Israelis that the claim that the right of return made the peace talks fail was an Israeli disinformation ploy. As evidence, he said that Arafat at Camp David distinguished between the overall refugee problem and the specific problems of the refugees in Lebanon and offered five ways for refugee rehabilitation - only one of which was return to Israel.

But when the Israelis suggested a reference to the need for a solution to the refugee problem in the joint statement, Abed Rabo said that in a written document he had no choice but to make sure there was a mention of the right of return.

WAITING FOR THE BIG BANG

By Moshe Arens

[Ha'aretz 10 July 2001]: Everybody seems to be waiting for the big bang: the military onslaught against Arafat's forces, from Jenin to Hebron and from Gaza to Rafah, that will create chaos among the Palestinians and - in the same way the Big Bang 15,000,000,000 years ago blew our universe into existence - will bring forth new forces among the Palestinians, creating new dimensions of time and space in Judea, Samaria, and Gaza. Sharon's long-time supporters are convinced he is gritting his teeth, waiting for an opportune moment. It did not come, as some had expected, after Sharon's return from his meeting with President Bush, and it did not come after his return from his meetings with Chancellor Schroder and President Chirac. Will it take another catastrophe like the Dolphinarium? Or will it come after patience has worn thin, after everything that could have been said has been said at the Cabinet debates between Shimon Peres (who continues to insist Arafat is our only hope) and the hard-liners?

In the meantime the debate continues. Will we be better off with Arafat out of the way, or is this irascible terrorist the best option on offer to Israel? If he informs us that he intends to return to Tunis or set up shop in Baghdad, are we going to beg him to stay? And in the meantime, the government's policy of restraint and unilateral cease-fire continues while Israelis are being killed on the roads, Psagot receives its nightly dose of bullets and Gush Katif its daily ration of mortar shells, car bombs are left to blow up in Israel's cities and suicide bombers are being prepared for their murderous missions.

Instead of attempting to divine what alternate futures hold in store for us, or arguing about whether Israel would be worse or better off if Arafat were to leave the scene, our government should be concentrating on immediate objectives - putting first things first. It is incumbent upon the government to protect the lives of Israel's citizens and it should be taking all possible measures to attain that objective. Even Shimon Peres should have no difficulty explaining a policy whose specific objective is protecting Israelis against murder - murder on the roads and murder in the streets of our cities. This is not primarily a matter of targeting individual Palestinians, but rather of extending protective cover to Israelis in danger of attack, interdicting terrorists on their way to attack Israelis, and taking initiatives in the field to abort acts of terror.

Too often we hear the lame excuse that the Israel Defense Forces cannot protect motorists on thousands of kilometers of highways in Judea and Samaria - that, in other words, we are destined to suffer daily murder on the roads until such time as we have given Arafat what he wants. The fact of the matter is that the stretches of highway on which Israeli motorists are endangered are far fewer, and focused military action on these stretches can produce results. The use of protective walls along the sides of roads is generally a waste of time and money. Unfortunately, after almost 10 months of killings on the roads, we are only now beginning to hear of plans to direct the IDF to focus on the roads, and we have yet to see the results.

Dealing with the danger of suicide bombers is also presented as an almost impossible task. The fact is that the entry of Palestinian suicide bombers into our cities is at present relatively easy and often it has only been luck that prevented additional catastrophes. The reason for this is that over 100,000 Palestinians, from Judea, Samaria, Gaza, and Jordan, move freely among us, many of them residing in Israeli cities and villages. Total anarchy reigns concerning the entry - legal or illegal - of Palestinians into Israel, their work and their residence here. In these circumstances it is relatively easy for Palestinian terrorists to move about in Israel, frequently receiving assistance from Palestinians who happen to be here. Thus, suicide bombers make it to their intended targets with relative ease. The terrorist who exploded himself at the Dolphinarium was driven there by a Palestinian from Qalqilya who resides in Jaffa and was asked by his friends in Qalqilya to drive the suicide-bomber from the Qalqilya check-point to Tel Aviv. The time has come to put an end to this state of affairs. As long as we are threatened by these kinds of outrages, the presence of over 100,000 Palestinians from Judea, Samaria, Gaza, and Jordan in our midst is a luxury we can ill afford.

If the measures required to restore safety to Israel's citizens are taken, the big bang may not even be necessary.

ISRAEL MOVES INTO GAZA REFUGEE CAMP

By IBRAHIM BARZAK

RAFAH REFUGEE CAMP, Gaza Strip (AP - July 10) - Moving tanks and bulldozers into a Gaza refugee camp early Tuesday, Israel demolished Palestinian homes it said served as cover for gunmen, triggering one of the fiercest gun battles since a truce was declared a month ago.

Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat, meanwhile, laughed off persistent rumors that Israel's government is planning to topple him if he does not stop Palestinian attacks on Israelis. ``O mountain, you cannot be shaken by the wind,'' a smiling Arafat told reporters in the West Bank town of Ramallah, quoting an Arab proverb.

The Rafah raid came a day after Israel demolished 14 Palestinian homes in a refugee camp in Jerusalem on grounds they were built without permits. Palestinians have said it is virtually impossible for them to obtain building permits in Jerusalem.

For the second day in a row, U.S. State Department spokesman Richard Boucher criticized Israeli destruction of Palestinian houses on Tuesday, calling the moves ``highly provocative.''

At a briefing in Washington, he said the United States is ``deeply troubled,'' and ``urged an immediate halt to any further demolition of Palestinian homes,'' according to a transcript released by the State Department.

On Monday, Boucher had spoke against the tearing down of 14 houses in the Shuafat refugee camp near Jerusalem.

The Israeli moves threatened to further undermine a cease-fire negotiated by CIA director George Tenet. The truce went into effect June 13, but has been shaken by repeated acts of violence and deaths on both sides.

As the armor-plated bulldozers rumbled into the camp, Palestinians opened fire and threw grenades. Three Israeli soldiers were wounded, one seriously, the military said. Five Palestinians were wounded by Israeli fire.

The destruction was so complete that it was impossible to count the number of structures that once stood on the site in the Rafah camp along the Gaza-Egypt border, opposite an Israeli army post. An area of about 500 square yards was destroyed. Palestinian agencies gave varying numbers up to 24 houses and 11 shops, but there were several apartments and shops in each building, confusing the picture further.

Piles of rubble lay on the ground, and residents picked through the remains, looking for belongings, though the Israeli military said the structures were uninhabited and used only by Palestinian gunmen to fire at the army post on the Egyptian border.

An Israeli army spokesman, Lt. Col. Olivier Rafowicz, said 10 to 15 homes were demolished.

Mohammed Abu Libdeh, an engineer, watched with his five children as bulldozers destroyed his house. ``It is a barbaric action by them,'' he said. ``I spent all my savings to build this house and now I am homeless,'' he said.

The Israeli military said the area is under Israeli security control, under interim peace accords, because it is near the border. However, the Palestinians said the operation was an incursion into their territory. The army post on the border has come under daily gunfire and grenade attacks from the camp. The Israelis said hundreds of grenades have been thrown at the post, and they cleared away the structures to stop the attacks.

``It's a crime,'' said Arafat, talking to reporters. ``They have demolished these houses while the residents were sleeping in them.'' He said he would seek Arab and international involvement ``to stop these crimes.''

Arafat laughed off reports in the Israeli press that Cabinet ministers were calling for his expulsion because of more than nine months of violence. Reports from an Israeli Cabinet meeting Monday reflected deep divisions within Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's national unity government, with hard-liners calling for an offensive against Arafat and moderates counseling restraint.

Environment Minister Tsachi Hanegbi, from Sharon's Likud party, called for an operation including attack helicopters and warplanes, according to the Yediot Ahronot daily. Trade Minister Dalia Itzik of the Labor party warned that a small war might turn into a big war.

Sharon took the side of the moderates, pounding his fist on the Cabinet table in anger, according to the newspaper account, insisting that he has not limited the actions of the military.

Sharon, meanwhile, toured the Golan Heights, a strategic plateau captured from Syria in the 1967 Mideast war. He assured Jewish settlers there that Israel would not withdraw from the Golan. ``This danger does not exist,'' he said. ``Today the reality is different.''

Peace negotiations between Israel and Syria, conducted by Sharon's predecessor Ehud Barak, broke down, though Barak offered to give back almost all of the territory.


July 2001


Magazine






DISASTEROUS ARAB-AMERICAN AFFAIRS IN WASHINGTON-PART 1
(July 31, 2001)
The Arabs are so weak in the Middle East and in the world for reasons that go deep into history and culture. This isn't a genetic matter, it's the way they are politically and socially organized in "modern times" that creates an absurd situation whereby a small resourceless country like Israel can dominate some 23 Arab countries with a population nearly as large as the United States.

IMPRISONED, TRAPPED, AND UNPREPARED BY ARAFAT
(July 31, 2001)
Arafat has once again trapped and imprisoned his own people -- keep reading. Wherever he has set up his headquarters corruption, repression, nepotism, and scandal have followed. And always these realities of what we have termed the "Arafat regime" are exploited to further fracture and weaken the Palestinian people -- a people whose basic claim to independence, "return", and reparations should at this point be unassailable.

DECEPTIVE AND OUT OF FOCUS REPORTS
(July 30, 2001)
About that report published "in full" in the Saudi Royal Family London newspaper Al-Hayat over the weekend and then, it now appears erroneously, picked up by Israel's top newspaper Ha'aretz. We already mentioned that the whole thing seemed suspicious. And sure enough with the Monday dawn of a new week and a little fast checking it seems the author, long-time military analysis and close CIA confidant at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) Anthony Cordesman, says he didn't write it and the whole thing looks like a set-up.

AMERICAN STUDY: ISRAEL WOULD BE UNABLE TO REPEL ALL-OUT ARAB ATTACK
(July 30, 2001)
The report in Saturday's Ha'aretz is not up to their usual standards as names are misspelled and context missing -- it appears to be a journalistic quickie. But even so, and though the Israelis aren't going to admit it, they are becoming more nervous and insecure about their future. And among other reasons that's why they choose the heretofore unelectable Ariel Sharon as their Prime Minister.

CREEPING TEMPLE AND CREEPING EMBASSY
(July 29, 2001)
In 1967, as the Israeli army took control of all of Jerusalem, the Israeli Flag flew on what the Jews call "the Temple Mount" for the first time since Christ and Mohamed walked the area. Sensing what this could lead to General Moshe Dayan quickly ordered the flag lowered, turned the area that the Muslims call "the Noble Sanctuary", al Haram al Sharif, back over to the Islamic authorities, and though Israel claims sovereignty it's flag has never flown again over the area of the Temple Mount

THE BLEAK FUTURE TODAY IN THE HOLY CITY OF JERUSALEM
(July 29, 2001)
It was "radical" groups that emplanted themselves in the city of Hebron a long time ago, back in fact when the Labor party was still supreme in Israeli affairs. And just look today at that city where the common forefather of both the Jews and the Arabs is buried.

POTENTIAL EXPLOSION IN JERUSALEM SUNDAY
(July 28, 2001)
Arab leaders have warned that a messianic Jewish organisation's plan to make the first move towards rebuilding the Biblical Temple in Jerusalem is a "dangerous step" that could lead to uncontrollable consequences.

JEWS PREPARE FOR JERUSALEM THIRD TEMPLE- AND SO FINALLY DO THE ARABS
(July 28, 2001)
After today's previous MER article was published -- "God War Emerging In Holy Land" -- this Agence France-Presse article has just come over the wires. Characteristically the representatives of the Hashemite Kingdom -- the regime that has been most complicitous in secretly collaborating with the Israelis for decades to control the Palestinians sandwiched between them -- are publicly posturing in one way while actually acting in another.

RELIGIOUS WAR EMERGING IN THE HOLY LAND
(July 28, 2001)
In the years since the turn of the millenium the Arab-Israeli conflict is being transformed into an even more dangerous and potentially cataclysmic Muslim-Jewish war. Ariel Sharon's "visit" to the Temple Mount last year, accompanied by a huge military force, helped sparked Intifada II -- make no mistake about that.

WAR CRIMES TRIALS FOR SHARON ET. AL.?
(July 27, 2001)
In the end the Israelis are likely to find a way to deal with this new situation. They have great resources at their disposal when it comes to the media, intelligence information, lobbying capabilities, help from key governments in the US, UK, and Germany. They have a long history of twisting things to their advantage one way or another. And those opposed to them have a long reputation for much the opposite in fact.

TWISTING ARAFAT UNTIL HE IS DEAD OR GONE
(July 27, 2001)
The Israelis probably prefer Arafat dead at this point; but not at their own hand, at least not directly. Indeed, many of those who used the "Oslo Peace Process" to end Intifada I probably thought Arafat would have either been assassinated or died by now, leaving behind a "peace process" legacy as did Anwar Sadat when he was gunned down by his own soldiers just a few years after reluctantly signing on-the-dotted-line at Camp David 1.

"WARNING! ELECTRIC FENCE" - "WARNING! ISRAELI ARMY"
(July 26, 2001)
NEWSFLASH Thursday Evening 9pm ET: An Israeli teenager has been killed in a shooting attack in the West Bank and three bombs have gone off in the West Bank near Israeli vehicles. The attacks came hours after Palestinians buried a militant killed in an Israeli missile attack. Israeli tanks also shelled Palestinian police posts in a village north of Ramallah and a checkpoint run by Force 17, an elite unit of the police, south of the town, not far from the site of the shooting, said Palestinian security sources.

DEATH, REPRESSION, AND DESTRUCTION EVERYWHERE. SHARON'S POLICY TO PROVOKE VIOLENCE IS WORKING
(July 26, 2001)
Everywhere the settlements continue to expand even as the Israelis constantly twist their words as well as the facts. The Israelis know very well what they are doing and what they want -- they are taking the land and the resources from the indigenous people and then isolating the people in what amount to ghettos and concentration camps calling them "autonomous" areas.

ISRAELI RIGHT STRIKES WHILE ISRAELI LEFT WRITES
(July 25, 2001)
The Israeli army is partially mobilized and positioned for a quick and multi-directional assault on the forces of Yasser Arafat's Palestinian Authority, ironically armed by the Israelis themselves in years past. Draft mobilization offices have been opened by the Israelis in key U.S. and European cities. The Israelis propaganda machine has been beefed up and already beginning to operate on all cylinders.

PALESTINIAN CIVIL WAR DRAWS CLOSER
(July 25, 2001)
"Israel says Arafat is not doing enough to bolster a US-brokered truce, demanding he arrest activists and stop attacks against armed Jewish settlers and soldiers in occupied areas of the West Bank and Gaza. But Arafat has said he is not in control of security in occupied areas. Palestinians blame Israel for the on-going violence"

WHAT'S UP FOR ARAFAT?
(July 25, 2001)
Ariel Sharon has always been scamming everyone. His long career in the military is full of deception and treachery in public while committing blood-curdling massacres in private. In the most notorious case of all, the Sabra and Shatilla refugee camps of 1982 ...

OFFICIAL PLO VERSION OF CAMP DAVID
(July 25, 2001)
The latest dueling, in advance of the "big bang" which Arafat himself now says is definitely coming -- and whose real purpose by the Israeli right-wing is to end the "Oslo Peace Process" once and for all -- is a battle for public opinion conducted through a convoluted debate over who offered what to whom and who is responsible for the failing of the "peace process".

REGIONAL WAR POSSIBILITIES
(July 24, 2001)
The following two articles are from publications associated with Janes Intelligence Weekly in the U.K. But what's looked at here are the short-term implications and the correct assessment that the very weak and in most cases U.S.-controlled Arab "client regimes" in the region will find one way or another to avoid any military clashes with the vastly superior Israelis.

PALESTINIAN CIVIL WAR LOOMS
(July 24, 2001)
Those who have read MER for some time know that we have long indicated that one of the Israeli goals was to foment a Palestinian civil war. Some of the Israelis, dubbed the "peace camp", preferred to twist Arafat into totally succumbing and signing some kind of "end of conflict" agreement along with creation of a rump and everywhere-controlled Palestinian State.

NEW BATTLE FOR HISTORY
(July 24, 2001)
The latest dueling, in advance of the "big bang" -- whose real purpose by the Israeli right-wing is to end the "Oslo Peace Process" once and for all -- is a battle for public opinion conducted through a convoluted debate over who offered what to whom and who is responsible for the failing of the "peace process".

ARMIES AND POLITICIANS POSITIONING THEMSELVES FOR "BIG BANG" AND THEREAFTER
(July 23, 2001)
Ehud Barak is in the U.S. explaining why his former "peace partner" Arafat is really a big thug who can't possibly be believed or trusted, and how he Barak proved it, kind of sacrificing himself he continually implies.

THE BIG LIES
(July 21, 2001)
Goebbels himself could not have done a better job. For those who don't recognize the name, check back in the not too distant history books under the heading Nazi Information Ministry.

ISRAEL SET TO ATTACK ACCORDING TO CIA
(July 20, 2001)
At first we had the adjective "cowardly" as a preface to "Arabs" in the headline. Let's be clear what we mean here. We're not talking about the Arab peoples, nor about those who do the brave struggling...and the real suffering...and the bleeding and the dying.

WAR DRUMS IN THE HOLY LAND
(July 20, 2001)
No way to know for sure, but if we had to predict at this moment the "Big Bang" (see previous "War Drums" articles for context) will be heard not this week but next after the Maccabiah games have ended and the G8 leaders survive Genoa.

AMERICANS GET ANOTHER WARNING
(July 19, 2001)
With the unprecedented "Red Zone" in Genoa; with key Washington buildings surrounded by concrete and high-tech survelliance; and with Americans warned again by their government to "beware" following on last month's Threatcon Delta alert; the "terrorists" have already accomplished a small part of their goal.

AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL AND ARAB LEAGUE OFFER LITTLE BUT WORDS AND A FEW BUCKS
(July 19, 2001)
It's that little old problem rearing it's ugly head again -- calls that come much too late and even then call for much too little. Worse yet the calls come in very self-serving ways from persons and institutions whose past records make them not very credible, and certainly not very potent.

FINALLY BURYING OSLO
(July 18, 2001)
The "Oslo Peace Process" -- which would have been more aptly named the "Rabin" or the "Clinton" -- has been brain-dead for some time now; kept alive only by extraordinary life-support efforts by its parent surrogates.

INDIA-PAKISTAN SUMMIT COLLAPSES, INDIA IMMEDIATELY ANNOUNCES MAJOR MILITARY ESCALATION WITH ISRAEL
(July 18, 2001)
With both Turkey and India the Israelis are developing formidable military, financial, and intelligence alliances surrounding the Arab and Muslim worlds. These relationships tremendously strengthen the Jewish State financially, militarily, and strategically at a very critical time.

TINDERBOX AWAITS MATCH
(July 17, 2001)
"This could result in a bloodbath and thereby set the entire region aflame. It's not out of the question that demonstrations could topple unpopular regimes in Jordan, Egypt or Saudi Arabia... The tinderbox is awaiting a match."

ARAFAT FADING
(July 17, 2001)
It's beginning to appear that it's just a matter of time now for Arafat to finally be gone. As far as the Israelis and Americans are concerned, it no longer really matters like it use to.

ISRAEL PUSHES PALESTINIANS TOWARD CIVIL WAR
(July 17, 2001)
"No power in the world can stop the resistance operations that come as a reaction to the Israeli aggression ... we have nothing more to lose."

ISRAELIS PUSHING HARD TO PROVOKE MORE PALESTINIAN ATTACKS
(July 16, 2001)
A few years ago when the Americans essentially forced Yasser Arafat to sign one of those deals, this one about Hebron, that was supposed to push the "peace process" forward, it was foreseeable that sooner rather than later Hebron would once again erupt.

MUBARAK REGIME EARNS ITS PAY ONCE AGAIN
(July 15, 2001)
Today the Egyptians hosted Shimon Peres and Yasser Arafat in Cairo. It's a replay of this kind of thing they've been doing for quite some years now. The Egyptians are at it again, fronting for the Americans as they have ever since the original Camp David extravaganza in 1978.

WAR DRUMS FROM ISRAEL
(July 15, 2001)
Longtime top adviser to Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, Osama el-Baz, has issued a not-so-veiled warning to the Israelis not to attack Syria. The head of Egyptian military intelligence rushed to Israel a few days ago supposedly to warn the Israelis not to dethrone Yasser Arafat.

RACE TO NUCLEAR WAR
(July 14, 2001)
While the Israelis and the Arabs confront each other in a conflict that may now last for a very long time and even lead to a Middle East holocaust in the future; and while the other "peace process" in Northern Ireland also collapses due to its similar duplicitous nature; it is in the subcontinent that the race toward a possible nuclear conflagration is furthest advanced at this moment in history.

MORE U.S. DUPLICLITY - COLIN POWELL NOW IN CHARGE
(July 13, 2001)
It was another top General turned State Department Secretary who gave Ariel Sharon the behind-the-scenes "green light" back in 1982 - General Alexander Haig.

PREPARING FOR THE WAR OF HIS CHOOSING
(July 13, 2001)
What we feared has come true: Two ethno-national groups, living in each other's backyards, are going through a proces of regression to superstitious tribalism. The sounds of the drums are heard throughout the land calling both tribes to gather around the campfire, dress in the colors of war and head out to battle to eliminate the very last member of the other side.

INVASION WATCH?
(July 13, 2001)
What are we to call this situation? "War Watch"...no, the sides are far too uneven, it's not really going to be a war...not unless one or more of the Arab regimes should find itself cornered or facing revolution.

WEST WING PARTIALLY EVACUATED
(July 12, 2001)
A few barks from the sniffers dogs and even after all the security checks required to get into the White House grounds the Secret Service pulled the alarm and quickly began the evacuation procedure.

ISRAELIS GENERALS' PLAN TO "SMASH" PALESTINIANS
(July 12, 2001)
Israeli generals have updated plans for an all-out assault to smash the Palestinian authority, force out leader Yasser Arafat and kill or detain its army, according to a report published Thursday in London.

JANES "FOREIGN REPORTS" DETAILS ISRAELI INVASION PLAN
(July 12, 2001)
The report that a force of some 30,000 Israeli troops is preparing to take on Arafat's "Authority" and bring it to an end was just published in one of the most reputable international publications, one published by the Janes Intelligence network in the U.K. and available only to members who pay a sizeable yearly subscription fee.

ISRAELIS PREPARE WAY TO TAKE OUT ARAFAT REGIME AND TO TAKE ON IRAN'S NEW WEAPON SYSTEMS
(July 11, 2001)
Whatever the truth of Israel's latest allegations against both the Arafat Authority and Iran, there should be little doubt what the Israelis are really up to at this point, with Shimon Peres leading the charge.

BULLDOZERS PREPARING THE WAY FOR THE "BIG BANG"
(July 11, 2001)
It's all part of the same game. The Israelis think they have the Palestinians trapped. They publicly debate how to put them in their place with bulldozers, expulsions, invasion, awaiting the "big bang".

ISRAELIS UNDER SIEGE WITH ARAFAT FACING HIS OWN
(July 10, 2001)
Nearly half of the Israeli Jewish population got a stern warning yesterday - don't drink the water. Today Israel's lifeline, it's international airport between Tel Aviv and Jerusalem, is under virtual siege with huge traffic jams as all vehicles undergo the kind of rigorous fender-to-fender inspection previously reserved for just "Arab" cars with special blue plates.

ALGERIA READY TO EXPLODE
(July 10, 2001)
While the legacy of British colonialism still lingers in Palestine and Kashmir, still threatening cataclysmic conflict in both regions, in Algeria it is the legacy of French colonialism, which also of course still has loud echoes in Lebanon and Syria.

WAR IS IN THE AIR - Part 2
(July 10, 2001)
The Egyptians are arming with missiles to deter Israeli strikes against Egyptian cities or strategic targets such as the Aswan dam. These may be conceived as deterrent weapons; but they also could be used in other situations.

WAR IS IN THE AIR - Part 1
(July 9, 2001)
"The stage, therefore, has been set for the outbreak of the next wear: wall-to-wall political approval for a military solution to the current crisis, the appropriate international preparations during the period of restraint."

EVERYTHING YOU WANTED TO KNOW ABOUT THE "RIGHT OF RETURN" BUT WERE TOO AFRAID TO ASK
(July 7, 2001)
"Who will compensate me and my family for all the suffering we went through? Financial compensation cannot replace the right of return....The main thing is to go back to where I belong."

THE STAGE IS NOW SET
(July 7, 2001)
This is the way such things are done these days. Lots of testing of the waters. Lots of preparing the way. Lots of trial balloons. If (probably no longer when) the Israelis "remove" Arafat one way or another -- just as it was they who put him where he is in the first place -- it will no longer come as such a great shock.

FENCING THE PALESTINIANS IN - "UNILATERAL SEPARATION"
(July 6, 2001)
Having to a considerable extent succeeding in colonizing the "occupied territories", especially the most important areas around Jerusalem and the most cultivatable areas along with the crucial water resources, the Israelis are now ready for more fences and barricades.

STOPPING SHARON - PROBABLY TOO LATE
(July 6, 2001)
He's not likely to be stopped now. He's prepared most of his life for this moment in history. And as Israeli Prime Minister for just the past few months he's already visited the American President twice, Downing Street, and now both Germany and France, applauded in public more for his "restraint" as the "new Sharon" rather than for his war criminal past and the neo-apartheid oppression machine he now bears full responsibility for.

ISRAEL SHAHAK DIES AS CALAMITY HE FORESAW APPROACHES
(July 5, 2001)
Just what "cease-fire" is Sarid talking about? And if he really wants a serious outside force, why is he not appealing to the U.N. under Chapter 7 and why are not the Arabs included?

ISRAELIS TO NOW KILL MORE PALESTINIAN ACTIVISTS
(July 4, 2001)
Ariel Sharon and his government are preparing the way to kill more Palestinian street and faction leaders using various forms of high-tech assassination. They are also preparing world public opinion not only for bringing the Arafat "Authority" to an end but for killing and expelling as many Palestinians as circumstances will allow.

THE REAL ARAFAT
(July 3, 2001)
Of course Sharon's comment yesterday is ridiculous. Problem is the strategy behind it is not. "You must comply, resistance is futile" is indeed the loud message from Sharon to Arafat; and Sharon does intend to prove his words in the weeks and months ahead, make no mistake about that.

THE REAL SHARON, MASKED AND PREPARING FOR ANOTHER "GREEN LIGHT"
(July 2, 2001)
Ariel Sharon has Yasser Arafat cornered now -- right where he wants him. Sharon has in essence forced Arafat to publicly call off the Intifada -- or else Sharon made it rather clear, most of all to his American allies, that he would call off Arafat's regime whatever the consequences.

5 PALESTINIANS KILLED SUNDAY
(July 1, 2001)
Five Palestinian militants have been killed by Israeli forces, three in a pinpoint helicopter attack and two in a clash with soldiers. The helicopter fired missiles at a car in which the three men were travelling near Qabatiye in the northern West Bank, Palestinian security officials said.

SYRIA STRUCK FOR SECOND TIME SINCE SHARON BECAME PM
(July 1, 2001)
The Arabs have an amazing tolerance for being struck. Partly it is because of their weakness of course; coupled with their long history of subjugation and occupation. But those who know Arab society also are aware that after taking it and taking it there sometimes comes a moment of powerful emotional uproar screaming for revenge.

SHARON PLAYS THE PALESTINIANS OFF AGAINST EACH OTHER
(July 1, 2001)
While Ariel Sharon uses the greatest pressure of all so far in order to bow the Arafat regime into submission -- the possibility of crushing Arafat's "Authority" through brut military force -- at the same time he holds out the carrot.




© 2004 Mid-East Realities, All rights reserved