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Israel passes bill setting stringent conditions on withdrawal from land

Israel sets stringent conditions for withdrawalIsrael's parliament has passed a bill setting stringent new conditions before any withdrawal from the Golan Heights or East Jerusalem.
The bill requires a two-thirds majority in the Knesset before any withdrawal could be approved.

Failing that, the proposal would be subject to a national referendum. Analysts say the move could complicate peace efforts by making it more difficult for any Israeli government to make territorial withdrawals.


Israeli troops guilty of using child as human shield in Gaza

IDF soldiers guilt of abuse in GazaAn Israeli military court has handed down suspended prison sentences to two former soldiers who forced a Palestinian boy to search for suspected booby-traps during the Gaza Strip war.

The ruling, issued on Sunday by the Kastina military court, meant the ex-conscripts, who were last month convicted of reckless endangerment and conduct unbecoming, are free but face a minimum three-month jail term if they commit another crime.
They were also stripped of their ranks as reservists.


London Mayor Boris Johnson: Bush Could Be Arrested For Torture

GW Bush criminalBoris Johnson is a total Tory and an old friend from college days. In a piece in the conservative Daily Telegraph, he advises George W. Bush not to bring his book tour to Britain, because he could face arrest as a war criminal:

“Waterboarding” is a disgusting practice by which the victim is deliberately made to think that he is drowning. It is not some cunning new psych-ops technique conceived by the CIA. It has been used in the dungeons of dictators for centuries.


U.S. taxpayers are paying for Israel's West Bank occupation

US taxpayers paying for Israeli occupationAccording to a June 2010 fact sheet on the USAID Internet site, last year American taxpayers funded the paving of 63 kilometers of asphalt roads in the West Bank. Travelers along the "original" West Bank roads, the ones enabling drivers to bypass Palestinian villages, can see signs declaring "USAID from the American People."

The roads are one of the initiatives of the United States Agency for International Development for building infrastructure in underdeveloped countries. Israel has already proudly left the club of developing countries and is not among the clients of USAID. Nevertheless, it appears the Smith family of Illinois is making the occupation a little less expensive for the Cohen family of Petah Tikva.


U.S. offers incentives to Israelis to halt settlements for 90 days

A senior U.S. administration official said Friday that while talks between U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Netanyahu on Thursday were substantive, there were no breakthroughs.

Another U.S. official said that the prime minister isn't budging on settlements in a way that will satisfy Palestinians, who broke off the peace talks when Israeli resumed settlement construction in late September.


US to expand military aid to Israel

US Congress approved a boost of $400 million worth of additional military equipment for Tel Aviv last month, Israeli newspaper Ha'aretz reported on Thursday.

The fresh aid package will bring the value of American military equipment stockpiled in Israel to $1.2 billion by 2012.


Israel demolishes illegal mosque in Arab town

Israel demolishes illegal mosque in Arab townIsraeli police demolished an illegally built mosque in this impoverished Arab town on Sunday, touching off rock-throwing protests by residents and fueling new grievances against the government by the country's Arab minority.

Before dawn, police armed with clubs and shields surrounded the area as a bulldozer knocked down the mosque in the southern desert town of Rahat. Arab residents shouted in protest and prayed close to the site. Later some hurled rocks at police, said police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld. There were no injuries and five people were arrested, he said.


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