Saturday, February 24, 2007

News Roundup for February 24

All is not well in Palestinian paradise. The civil war's civil truce is hanging by a thread.
...a Palestinian, who belonged to Hamas movement, was shot dead by gunmen from a rival clan amid a family feud...

...the killing triggered a clash in which a member of the rival clan, who was a Fatah supporter, was killed.

Both families said the fighting was an internal dispute and was not motivated by political rivalries.
Oh really? Hamas claims otherwise.
...Some odd persons don't want the calm to continue in our cities. those [Fatah] traitors, who don't like to the promises to be committed.
They are making a list and checking it twice.
This is the second crime during Mecca agreement after killing Muhmmad Abu Kharesh from Al-Qassam Brigades near Dahalan's [Fatah strongman] house in the Gaza Strip.
The accusations are flying. Stay tuned.

UPDATE - Reports have the dead at 5 and wounded at 15. Lovely how those Palestinian truces work.


The Palestinian peace movement is taking one on the chin. As the Ma'an news agency headline describes: Israeli army uses excessive force against peaceful demonstrators marking two years of Bil'in's struggle against the wall
Some 400 demonstrators marked two years of non-violent struggle...
The protesters are frequently confronted by new forms of weapons under trial by the Israeli forces.
Introducing: the Blue Water Cannon! That blue water has got to be radioactive, or something.

Needless to say, the carnage left no protestor untouched.
Around 20 people were injured today, including an elderly Palestinian man targeted by the Israeli water cannon,
See above.
...which knocked the frail gentleman from his feet, raised stones around him and left him in a crumpled heap on the uneven ground.
That's a wordsmith-y way of saying the old man got sprayed. Sorry I can't find a picture - it must have been too graphically horrible for anyone to photograph.


Hamas' leadership can claim victory where no one else can find one. Headline: Haneyya: USA position not in agreement with world stand

The world is against America and with Hamas. Sounds like prime conspiracy material.
[Haneyya] has underlined that the American administration's negative position vis-à-vis the Palestinian unity government was not in harmony with the world welcoming stand.
I think he means "the world welcoming stance". Adding insult to injury, Damascus-based Hamas leader Khaled Meshaal also announced that European aid was to resume for them. And he even accused Israel of issuing an Islamic ruling that the Europeans can't accept.
Meshaal said: "Neither Arabs nor Muslims are concerned by the Israeli fatwa and I think that the international community, for whom Israel has become a burden, will not pay attention either."
Well, according to the European Union themselves, the "welcoming stand" is dependent on certain expectations.
European Union's chief diplomat Javier Solana...."We cannot boycott what does not exist, the government still has not been formed," Solana said, but he stressed that the new administration would have to comply with the three Quartet principles. Solana cautioned that a Palestinian unity government would either be "part of a solution or ... be part of the problem."
Yes, "welcome" if Hamas does what they have explicitly refused to do.
But she [German Chancellor Merkel] returned to the conditions imposed by the Quartet, that any new government must give up violence, recognize Israel and accept existing agreements reached with Israel. The [Palestinian] power-sharing deal skirts those issues, and Hamas still refuses to recognize Israel.
If that's not enough, even the "unity government" partner, President Abbas, is also against Hamas on this.
Abbas was referring to the three principles drafted by the Quartet of Middle East peace negotiators - the United States, the European Union, Russia and the United Nations.

"We did not change our position, we did not change our principles," ... Abbas said that his Fatah party remained "committed to the principles of a two-state-solution, renouncing violence and terror and reiterating our commitment to agreements signed."
Never mind that Abbas made no such effort to do so when he took power after Arafat's death and before Hamas' election last year.

Regardless, Hamas' world wide "welcome" is still in the dock.


And finally, the King of Pop might switch cults. Headline: Michael Jackson 'Could Convert to Islam,' Brother Says
Jermaine Jackson, who converted to Islam in 1989, said he thought it was "most probable" that his eccentric brother, known for hits including "Thriller" and "Bad," would follow his lead by converting to the faith.

"When I came back from Mecca, I got him a lot of books and he asked me lots of things about my religion and I told him that it's peaceful and beautiful,"
Yes, so peaceful

and so beautiful.

A little advice, Michael: Islam has ways of dealing with its own when it comes to minors and, uh, "touching", usually via separating parts of your body from the other. So, unless the "touching" is restricted to little girls, I'd steer clear of the Religion of Peace if I were you.

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