Zio-Watch News Round-up

Dr. Patrick Slattery’s News Roundup, January 5, 2015



From the Jewish Telegrapic Agency

Israel balks at tax transfer in response to Palestinians’ ICC bid

JERUSALEM (JTA) — Israel froze some $125 million in Palestinian tax revenue in response to the Palestinian Authority’s request to join the International Criminal Court.

The move over the weekend followed the P.A.’s request on Friday to join the court as well nearly 20 other international treaties and conventions.

The tax money, which is used to pay public sector employees, was to have been transferred to the Palestinian Authority on Friday. Israel has frozen P.A. tax revenues before as a retaliatory measure.

On Sunday, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Israel “will not sit idly by” in the wake of Palestinian efforts to join the ICC.
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From PressTV

The International Criminal Court in The Hague, Netherlands (File photo)

The “crimes” Israel committed during its latest war on the Gaza Strip will be the first case the Palestinians will refer to the International Criminal Court if their membership request is accepted, a legal expert says.

Shawan Jabarin, director of al-Haq rights group in Ramallah, said on Sunday that the Palestinians are determined to file a lawsuit over the Israeli regime’s actions in the West Bank and Gaza Strip since June 13, 2014.

That was the date that Israel launched a massive manhunt in the West Bank after three Israeli teenagers went missing, provoking Israeli armed forces to start attacking the Gaza Strip.

Israel has launched three wars on Palestinians in the besieged Gaza Strip since 2008. Over 2,140 Palestinians, mostly civilians, were killed in the Israel’s onslaught last year, while some 11,000 were injured.
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From PressTV

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu


Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says the Tel Aviv regime will not permit its soldiers to appear at the International Criminal Court (ICC) and face potential war crime charges.

On Sunday, the Israeli premier said the regime would not allow its military forces to “be dragged” to The Hague-based criminal court after Palestinian officials formally submitted Palestine’s ICC membership documents to the United Nations.

He added that the Palestinians have “chosen to take a path of confrontation with Israel, and we will not sit idly by.”

Palestinian ambassador to the UN Riyad Mansour said Friday that the ICC membership would pave the way for Palestinian authorities to seek justice for the victims of the Israeli regime’s aggression.

Mansour also confirmed that the Palestinian envoy to The Hague had officially asked the ICC to launch an investigation into Israel’s war crimes during the regime’s 50-day military offensive on Gaza last summer.
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From PressTV

Israeli settlers backed by army soldiers attack Palestinians. (File photo)

Israeli settlers backed by army soldiers attack Palestinians. (File photo)

At least three Palestinians have been wounded during an attack by Israeli settlers on a village north of the occupied West Bank.

Israeli soldiers were at the scene of the raid in Aqraba on Saturday, but did nothing when Palestinian shepherds and farmers were assaulted, Palestinian sources said.

The armed settlers set a car ablaze and opened live fire at the villagers.

The Palestinian shepherds had gathered in the village, saying their herds had been stolen.

An Israeli military spokeswoman said later that the herds were found, without saying whether the herds had been found inside the Israeli settlements or not.
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From the Jewish Daily Forward

Astronaut Snaps Stunning Photos of Israel. Spot the ’67 Lines from Space!

By J.J. Goldberg

NASA astronaut Barry Wilmore shot a series of amazing photos of Israel from on board the International Space Station as it passed over the region on a crystal-clear Christmas morning 10 days ago. They were posted on the International Space Station’s Facebook page.

They are not color-enhanced. This is what it actually looks like from up there.

The first shot, above, looks north from above the Gulf of Aqaba. You can see the Mediterranean coastline from the Nile Delta at lower left all the way across the Sinai Peninsula, up the Israeli, Lebanese and Syrian coasts to Turkey. Just south of Turkey, partly obscured by clouds, is the island of Cyprus. The vertical blue oblong surrounded by brown desert near the center of the photo is the Dead Sea.

One of the most strikingly unexpected aspects of these photos is the clarity with which you can see the Green Line, the pre-1967 border between Israel and the West Bank. It’s clearest in the next photo, which is shot from over the Kingdom of Jordan, looking west (north is to the right, south to the left). You can see the West Bank as two brown oblong shapes in the middle of the photo, with the smaller Judean region to the left and the much larger Samaria to the right. They’re separated by the dark green finger of the old Jerusalem Corridor stretching down eastward from the coastal plain.
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From PressTV

Chief Palestinian negotiator, Saeb Erekat

A senior Palestinian official has condemned Israel’s freeze on Palestinian tax revenues as a “new war crime.”  

“This decision is a new Israeli war crime, but we won’t back off in the face of those pressures,” Chief Palestinian negotiator, Saeb Erekat, said on Saturday.

He added, “Israel is once again responding to our legal steps with further illegal collective punishments.”

An Israeli official confirmed that Tel Aviv has blocked the transfer of taxes it collects on behalf of Palestinians in retaliation for their application to join the International Criminal Court (ICC) and file war crimes charges against Israel.

“The funds for the month of December were due to pass on Friday, but it was decided to halt the transfer as part of the response to the Palestinian move,” the Israeli daily Haaretz quoted an unidentified Israeli official as saying.

The official went on to say the halting involves 127 million dollars worth of value-added tax (VAT) and customs duties on Palestinian goods that pass through Israel.
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From the Independent

Jeffrey Epstein ‘sex slave case’: Prince Andrew may now regret friendship with financier who had very dark secret

From former US presidents to Nobel prize-winning scientists, Jeffrey Epstein had a rare knack for collecting acquaintances from the globe’s most powerful and rarefied walks of life.

The former Manhattan maths tutor turned multi-millionaire financier first became a fixture on the New York social scene in the early 1990s, amassing a list of contacts – from Bill Clinton to Donald Trump to Kevin Spacey – that competed only with his property portfolio in shiny exclusivity.

It was while moving in these circles that Epstein, a sharp-minded philanthropist who has donated millions to scientific research, came into contact with Prince Andrew, probably in 2000 when the Duke of York was on the cusp of a new career as a trade envoy for Britain.

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From the Jewish Telegrapic Agency

From the Archive: Black Hebrews, from Chicago to Dimona

Ben-Israel’s community now numbers about 3,000, with most living in the Negev town of Dimona. While not officially recognized as Jewish, the Black Hebrews, as they are commonly known, make up a small subculture in Israel. Their history there has been somewhat turbulent.

Three weeks after the group’s first immigrants arrived in Israel from Chicago by way of Liberia, JTA reported that the community was “apparently getting along very well in their new environment,” although “their eventual status as immigrants remains undecided.” The report went on:

“Within three days of their arrival at Dimona all families found work at the nearby textile plants and in local shops and factories, according to the Jewish Agency. Their children are already attending school. All of them have Hebrew names and have some knowledge of the Hebrew language.”
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From PressTV

In summer of 2011, Israelis protested against injustice in occupied territories. (file photo)

In summer of 2011, Israelis protested against injustice in occupied territories. (file photo)

An increasing number of Israelis are giving up their passports as they are faced with various problems in other countries, a report says.

The number of Israelis renouncing their citizenship has increased by more than 65 percent last year, the website of the Israeli paper Yedioth Ahronoth reported on Sunday.

The paper cited year-end summaries which shows many Israelis, who live in Europe and the United States, are increasingly submitting documents to renounce the Israeli citizenship.

The report further said that the main reason behind the surge is the desire among the Israelis to hold other citizenship as they are faced with various problems in those countries.

Holding citizenship in some countries requires people to give up their Israeli passports. According to the survey, many have decided to stop being a citizen of the Zionist regime in order to adopt the other nationality.
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