Who Creates Refugees?

bassadwest10years The common denominator in the refugee crisis. America has economic or military interests in each country producing massive numbers of displaced populations. Psychotic Britain has been steadfastly at its side with similar private multi-national business interests. The first plane into Benghazi Libya following the city’s liberation (not my choice of word) was a military craft loaded not with humanitarian supplies but Executives of BP AMMACO and Royal Dutch Shell to secure four percent of the worlds crude oil owned by Libya. The BBC and media throughout informed it was a NATO humanitarian intervention. How’s that working out?

Meanwhile George Osbourne just used the death of a Syrian child on a beech in Turkey to his advantage quickly launching into producing the sound bites for more war. He wants to kill them before they leave Syria so as not to upset people in Europe.

World Heritage Centre Hosts Palestinian Refugees.

This gallery contains 10 photos.

The Visitors centre at the Giant’s Causeway is a world away from Aida, a Palestinian refugee camp near Bethlehem that houses 5000 people in an area just two hundred meters long by four hundred wide. Staff at the world heritage site on the North Antrim Coast played host to a visiting delegation of young people […]

Former US Ambassador: Israel, not Hamas, started the November war on Gaza

Operation Pillar of Cloud

Operation Pillar of Cloud

The following is a transcript of part of a fascinating interview by RT’s Sophie Shevardnadze with Chas W. Freeman, former US Ambassador and Defence Secretary. This section is about Operation Pillar of Cloud: The recent onslaught on the Gaza Strip.

“(S.Sh.) But Israel invokes its right to defend itself against terrorism. And this is a claim backed by countries such as the United States and Germany. You certainly don’t deny Israel this right, do you?

“(Freeman) Certainly not. But that doesn’t mean you can take preëmptive action to attack others, especially civilians. The fact that one side commits occasional acts of terrorism doesn’t justify state terrorism. And in this case there was no rocket fire of any consequence from the Gaza Strip into Israel prior to Israel’s inauguration of the military raid that killed the military leader of Hamas.”

Contrast this with William Hague‘s assertion in the first statement he made to the House of Commons about Operation Pillar of Cloud on 20th November: “On 14 November, the Israeli defence forces began air strikes against the Gaza strip in response to a sharp increase in rocket fire.” A position from which he has not deviated in any of his later statements about the conflict.

http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201213/cmhansrd/cm121120/debtext/121120-0001.htm#12112042000004

You can hear the interview with Mr Freeman if you click here: http://rt.com/news/killing-palestinians-freeman-diplomat-617/

The Forgotton September Massacre-Sabra & Shatila 30 Years On

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The 16th-18th of September 1982 witnessed the butchering of over 3,500 men women & children in a Palestinian refugee camps in Lebanon.  The Israel Defense Forces surrounded the Palestinian refugee camps, controlled access to them, and fired illuminating flares over the camps.

In 1982, an International Independent Commission chaired by Sean MacBride concluded that the Israeli authorities or forces were, directly, responsible for the events. The late Seán MacBride (26 January 1904 – 15 January 1988) was an Irish government minister and prominent international politician as well as a Chief of Staff of the IRA.

The  MacBride report found that these atrocities “were not inconsistent with  wider Israeli intentions to destroy Palestinian political will and cultural  identity.”

One of the first International eye-witnesses on the scene was Robert Fisk an English writer and journalist from Maidstone, Kent. As Middle East correspondent of The Independent, he has primarily been based in Beirut for more than 30 years. His account accentuates in the most brutally honest, descriptive narrative the aftermath of the slaughter. I include his first reports following the massacre;

SABRA AND SHATILA

By Robert Fisk

What we found inside the Palestinian camp at ten o’clock on the morning of September 1982 did not quite beggar description, although it would have been easier to re-tell in the cold prose of a medical examination. There had been medical examinations before in Lebanon, but rarely on this scale and never overlooked by a regular, supposedly disciplined army. In the panic and hatred of battle, tens of thousands had been killed in this country. But these people, hundreds of them had been shot down unarmed. This was a mass killing, an incident – how easily we used the word “incident” in Lebanon – that was also an atrocity. It went beyond even what the Israelis would have in other circumstances called a terrorist activity. It was a war crime.

Jenkins and Tveit were so overwhelmed by what we found in Chatila that at first we were unable to register our own shock. Bill Foley of AP had come with us. All he could say as he walked round was “Jesus Christ” over and over again. We might have accepted evidence of a few murders; even dozens of bodies, killed in the heat of combat. Bur there were women lying in houses with their skirts torn torn up to their waists and their legs wide apart, children with their throats cut, rows of young men shot in the back after being lined up at an execution wall. There were babies – blackened babies babies because they had been slaughtered more than 24-hours earlier and their small bodies were already in a state of decomposition – tossed into rubbish heaps alongside discarded US army ration tins, Israeli army equipment and empty bottles of whiskey.

Where were the murderers? Or to use the Israelis’ vocabulary, where were the “terrorists”? When we drove down to Chatila, we had seen the Israelis on the top of the apartments in the Avenue Camille Chamoun but they made no attempt to stop us. In fact, we had first been driven to the Bourj al-Barajneh camp because someone told us that there was a massacre there. All we saw was a Lebanese soldier chasing a car theif down a street. It was only when we were driving back past the entrance to Chatila that Jenkins decided to stop the car. “I don’t like this”, he said. “Where is everyone? What the f**k is that smell?”

Just inside the the southern entrance to the camp, there used to be a number of single-story, concrete walled houses. I had conducted many interviews in these hovels in the late 1970’s. When we walked across the muddy entrance to Chatila, we found that these buildings had been dynamited to the ground. There were cartridge cases across the main road. I saw several Israeli flare canisters, still attached to their tiny parachutes. Clouds of flies moved across the rubble, raiding parties with a nose for victory.

Down a laneway to our right, no more than 50 yards from the entrance, there lay a pile of corpses. There were more than a dozen of them, young men whose arms and legs had been wrapped around each other in the agony of death. All had been shot point-blank range through the cheek, the bullet tearing away a line of flesh up to the ear and entering the brain. Some had vivid crimson or black scars down the left side of their throats. One had been castrated, his trousers torn open and a settlement of flies throbbing over his torn intestines.

The eyes of these young men were all open. The youngest was only 12 or 13 years old. They were dressed in jeans and coloured shirts, the material absurdly tight over their flesh now that their bodies had begun to bloat in the heat. They had not been robbed. On one blackened wrist a Swiss watch recorded the correct time, the second hand still ticking round uselessly, expending the last energies of its dead owner.

On the other side of the main road, up a track through the debris, we found the bodies of five women and several children. The women were middle-aged and their corpses lay draped over a pile of rubble. One lay on her back, her dress torn open and the head of a little girl emerging from behind her. The girl had short dark curly hair, her eyes were staring at us and there was a frown on her face. She was dead.

Another child lay on the roadway like a discarded doll, her white dress stained with mud and dust. She could have been no more than three years old. The back of her head had been blown away by a bullet fired into her brain. One of the women also held a tiny baby to her body. The bullet that had passed into her breast had killed the baby too. Someone had slit open the woman’s stomach, cutting sideways and then upwards, perhaps trying to kill her unborn child. Her eyes were wide open, her dark face frozen in horror.

“…As we stood there, we heard a shout in Arabic from across the ruins. “They are coming back,” a man was screaming, So we ran in fear towards the road. I think, in retrospect, that it was probably anger that stopped us from leaving, for we now waited near the entrance to the camp to glimpse the faces of the men who were responsible for all of this. They must have been sent in here with Israeli permission. They must have been armed by the Israelis. Their handiwork had clearly been watched – closely observed – by the Israelis who were still watching us through their field-glasses.

When does a killing become an outrage? When does an atrocity become a massacre? Or, put another way, how many killings make a massacre? Thirty? A hundred? Three hundred? When is a massacre not a massacre? When the figures are too low? Or when the massacre is carried out by Israel’s friends rather than Israel’s enemies?

That, I suspected, was what this argument was about. If Syrian troops had crossed into Israel, surrounded a Kibbutz and allowed their Palestinian allies to slaughter the Jewish inhabitants, no Western news agency would waste its time afterwards arguing about whether or not it should be called a massacre.

But in Beirut, the victims were Palestinians. The guilty were certainly Christian militiamen – from which particular unit we were still unsure – but the Israelis were also guilty. If the Israelis had not taken part in the killings, they had certainly sent militia into the camp. They had trained them, given them uniforms, handed them US army rations and Israeli medical equipment. Then they had watched the murderers in the camps, they had given them military assistance – the Israeli airforce had dropped all those flares to help the men who were murdering the inhabitants of Sabra and Chatila – and they had established military liason with the murderers in the camps