A memo to Obama on Israel, Uri Avnery* (The Nation, Dec 29, 2008)
*Uri Avnery is a veteran of Israel's 1948 war, a former Member of the Knesset, founder of the Gush Shalom peace movement
3)Unfortunately, all your predecessors since 1967 have played a double game. While paying lip service to peace, and sometimes going through the motions of making some effort for peace, they have in practice supported our governments in moving in the very opposite direction. In particular, they have given tacit approval to the building and enlargement of Israeli settlements in the occupied Palestinian and Syrian territories, each of which is a land mine on the road to peace.
6) By now, the number of settlers in the West Bank has reached some 250,000 (apart from the 200,000 settlers in the Greater Jerusalem area, whose status is somewhat different). They are politically isolated, and sometimes detested by the majority of the Israel public, but enjoy significant support in the army and government ministries.
7) No Israeli government would dare to confront the concentrated political and material might of the settlers. Such a confrontation would need very strong leadership and the unstinting support of the President of the United States to have any chance of success.
9) The Clinton administration, and even more so the Bush administration, allowed the Israeli government to keep up this pretense. It is therefore imperative to prevent members of these administrations from diverting your Middle Eastern policy into the old channels.
Some more background here .
And a thirty second video that was not shown on DirectTV in the states:
Business as usual, a joint effort from the two volunteer blogs above.
Aid ship .