Students end occupation of university building

The Oxford Times: Stefan Tarnowski, left, and Tom Costello watch from a window at the Clarendon Building Stefan Tarnowski, left, and Tom Costello watch from a window at the Clarendon Building

Students occupied a historic building in protest against Oxford University’s perceived pro-Israeli stance today.

The protest ended at 7pm following hours of discussion with the university proctor, although protesters had earlier claimed they were prepared to stay for weeks.

About 80 pro-Palestine protesters began their occupation of the Clarendon Building, in Broad Street, at noon.

They walked into the building and told staff they were taking over.

But it was university security staff who secured the front gates, effectively locking them in.

The protesters called on the university to meet a list of demands relating to the conflict between Israel and Palestine.

They said the university should release a statement condemning the attacks on Gaza and cut its ties with arms firm BAE Systems and other companies involved in providing defence equipment to Israel. After the protest ended, spokesman Juliette Harkin said students felt the response from the university had been “satisfactory”.

They asked not to be punished for taking part in the protest.

The demonstrators also called on the master of Balliol College, Andrew Graham, to cancel the lecture series inaugurated by Israel President Shimon Peres on a visit to Oxford last November.

The students said they were prepared to occupy the listed building, part of the Bodleian Library, until their demands were met.

During the protest, Omar al-Shehabi, a 26-year-old economics student at Pembroke College, said protesters wouldn’t leave until their demands were met.

Russell Inglis, a 27-year-old former St Hugh’s College student, said: “The demands are reasonable and, as members of this academic community, we should have the right to make them.”

Asked whether cancelling the lecture series opened by Shimon Peres would be undemocratic, Dan, an 18-year-old Wadham College student, said: “It’s not a question of free speech. We’re happy to have people speaking from a variety of viewpoints but what we object to is the naming of the series after him and getting him to inaugurate it.”

Fellow Wadham student Will McCallum added: “It’s appalling the master of Balliol made a personal invite to Shimon Peres to come.

“I don’t have a problem with him coming to the university – we’ve had far more controversial people – but they have never been invited by an individual and given the Sheldonian to speak in, and it’s a very different matter having the lectures named after him.”

During the siege, the university refused to discuss the demands. After it ended, it was unavailable for comment.

A BAE Systems spokesman said: “BAE Systems maintains the highest ethical standards in the conduct of its business and complies with all applicable laws and regulations.

“We do not sell defence equipment direct from the UK to Israel, but BAE Systems does sell products from its US-managed businesses directly and indirectly to Israel, including through the US government. Any sale of such equipment to Israel is in full compliance with government controls and regulations.”

Balliol College refused to comment.

  • The protesters called on Oxford University to:

  • Release a statement condemning Israeli attacks on Gaza, especially the Islamic University
  • Provide scholarships to five Palestinian students from Gaza
  • Cease investment in arms firm BAE Systems, which they say supplies weapons to Israel
  • Provide resources to help rebuild Gaza University
  • Demand Balliol College cancels a lecture series recently inaugurated by Shimon Peres, the president of Israel.

tairs@oxfordmail.co.uk

Comments (21)

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9:43pm Thu 22 Jan 09

Mikeinexile says...

I want to express my support for these students. I notice that most other comments on the stories about this issue have been full of tired outdated cliches about students, and racist comments. Instead of being negative, how about celebrating the fact that, at a time when young people are accused of being politically apathetic, these students have taken action for a cause in which they believe? It is disgraceful the Oxford University has links to the state that is butchering the Palestinians of Gaza, and I'm glad to see somebody taking action to stop it.
I want to express my support for these students. I notice that most other comments on the stories about this issue have been full of tired outdated cliches about students, and racist comments. Instead of being negative, how about celebrating the fact that, at a time when young people are accused of being politically apathetic, these students have taken action for a cause in which they believe? It is disgraceful the Oxford University has links to the state that is butchering the Palestinians of Gaza, and I'm glad to see somebody taking action to stop it. Mikeinexile
  • Score: 1

10:25pm Thu 22 Jan 09

richn says...

The UN wants to take action against Israel. This cannot happen without active support from national governments. If we do not show concern, the government doesn't bother, simple as that. Please put your cynicism to one side and take a positive stance towards bringing peace to an area of tremendous suffering.

The point of this protest was to raise awareness and concern amongst students and the population as a whole. We choose a prominent yet unimportant building to occupy, and did not disturb either students or townspeople in either nuisance or expense.
The UN wants to take action against Israel. This cannot happen without active support from national governments. If we do not show concern, the government doesn't bother, simple as that. Please put your cynicism to one side and take a positive stance towards bringing peace to an area of tremendous suffering. The point of this protest was to raise awareness and concern amongst students and the population as a whole. We choose a prominent yet unimportant building to occupy, and did not disturb either students or townspeople in either nuisance or expense. richn
  • Score: 0

11:06pm Thu 22 Jan 09

Ian Sternberg says...

I am glad that this Attack on Academic Freedom has now ended - I hope that this is the last time We see an occupation that disrupts Students & Lecturers going about Their Lawfull Business - but somehow I doubt that the Totalitarian Forces Who have created a climate of fear & intimidation will stop their undemocratic activities anytime soon .

It is vitally important that The University stands firm & Resists the demands of these Extremists - All Our Freedoms are at risk if We don't all stand up & Defend them now !

I am glad that this Attack on Academic Freedom has now ended - I hope that this is the last time We see an occupation that disrupts Students & Lecturers going about Their Lawfull Business - but somehow I doubt that the Totalitarian Forces Who have created a climate of fear & intimidation will stop their undemocratic activities anytime soon . It is vitally important that The University stands firm & Resists the demands of these Extremists - All Our Freedoms are at risk if We don't all stand up & Defend them now ! Ian Sternberg
  • Score: 0

9:04am Fri 23 Jan 09

wallingford1 says...

Racist comments? where? You should study English.

*yawn*yawn*

Stuck up pompous idiots stamping their feet and wanting attention. Didn't stick it out like they said they would, all talk no action as per normal. Get a job!!
Racist comments? where? You should study English. *yawn*yawn* Stuck up pompous idiots stamping their feet and wanting attention. Didn't stick it out like they said they would, all talk no action as per normal. Get a job!! wallingford1
  • Score: 0

9:46am Fri 23 Jan 09

EB says...

Solidarity, friends. Well done for standing up against the terrorist and apartheid state that Israel is.

Solidarity, friends. Well done for standing up against the terrorist and apartheid state that Israel is. EB
  • Score: 0

11:06am Fri 23 Jan 09

Quentin Walker says...

Typical of the loonie left. Anyone who holds different opinions is pilloried.

These children should realise that democracy is all about freedom to hold and express diverse views.

Attempting to force people to agree to their views by petulant acts does nothing for reasoned debate and alienates others against their cause - which may, or not, be just.

It would appear maturity is not taken into much account at the University selection process.
Typical of the loonie left. Anyone who holds different opinions is pilloried. These children should realise that democracy is all about freedom to hold and express diverse views. Attempting to force people to agree to their views by petulant acts does nothing for reasoned debate and alienates others against their cause - which may, or not, be just. It would appear maturity is not taken into much account at the University selection process. Quentin Walker
  • Score: 0

1:31pm Fri 23 Jan 09

Diamond Lil says...

I have often thought Oxford students need locking it was a shame it was only eighty or so!
I am sure their protest will bring peace in the middle east.lol

Do look at the wider picture with what has happened in the past..Israel protects its own...maybe these spoilt brats have heard of the haulocaust?
I have often thought Oxford students need locking it was a shame it was only eighty or so! I am sure their protest will bring peace in the middle east.lol Do look at the wider picture with what has happened in the past..Israel protects its own...maybe these spoilt brats have heard of the haulocaust? Diamond Lil
  • Score: 0

5:02pm Fri 23 Jan 09

Terry Chandler says...

If palestinians stop firing rockets into Israel they would have no reason to do what they are doing.
These students should be thrown out,
disgraceful behaviour.
If palestinians stop firing rockets into Israel they would have no reason to do what they are doing. These students should be thrown out, disgraceful behaviour. Terry Chandler
  • Score: 0

6:45pm Fri 23 Jan 09

DanOxford says...

wallingford1 wrote:
Racist comments? where? You should study English. *yawn*yawn* Stuck up pompous idiots stamping their feet and wanting attention. Didn't stick it out like they said they would, all talk no action as per normal. Get a job!!
Totally agree.

You can usually rely on pampered and over- privileged white people to roar their terrible roar and gnash their terrible teeth against the US or Israel, conveniently ignoring the fact that the enemies of both Countries are led by religious nutcases who target civillians, behead people, pay no heed to the Geneva convention and inflict the worst atrocities and indignations upon their own people.

We all know full well that the majority of these 'protestors' either join the establishment itself or get ridiculously well paid jobs working for various mickey mouse groups that the establishment has to appear to engage over 'controversial' issues.

[quote][p][bold]wallingford1[/bold] wrote: Racist comments? where? You should study English. *yawn*yawn* Stuck up pompous idiots stamping their feet and wanting attention. Didn't stick it out like they said they would, all talk no action as per normal. Get a job!![/p][/quote]Totally agree. You can usually rely on pampered and over- privileged white people to roar their terrible roar and gnash their terrible teeth against the US or Israel, conveniently ignoring the fact that the enemies of both Countries are led by religious nutcases who target civillians, behead people, pay no heed to the Geneva convention and inflict the worst atrocities and indignations upon their own people. We all know full well that the majority of these 'protestors' either join the establishment itself or get ridiculously well paid jobs working for various mickey mouse groups that the establishment has to appear to engage over 'controversial' issues. DanOxford
  • Score: 0

1:07am Sat 24 Jan 09

Nn says...

"Stuck up pompous idiots stamping their feet and wanting attention. Didn't stick it out like they said they would, all talk no action as per normal."

Actually, the reason we left was that we'd got what we were there for, which were all extremely reasonable demands (proved by the fact that the university was willing to negotiate and compromise on all of them very quickly). By leaving as soon as we had achieved as much as we could, we proved that we weren't just there for 'attention'.
"Stuck up pompous idiots stamping their feet and wanting attention. Didn't stick it out like they said they would, all talk no action as per normal." Actually, the reason we left was that we'd got what we were there for, which were all extremely reasonable demands (proved by the fact that the university was willing to negotiate and compromise on all of them very quickly). By leaving as soon as we had achieved as much as we could, we proved that we weren't just there for 'attention'. Nn
  • Score: 0

12:02pm Sat 24 Jan 09

Eddy Grundy says...

Nn wrote:
"Stuck up pompous idiots stamping their feet and wanting attention. Didn't stick it out like they said they would, all talk no action as per normal." Actually, the reason we left was that we'd got what we were there for, which were all extremely reasonable demands (proved by the fact that the university was willing to negotiate and compromise on all of them very quickly). By leaving as soon as we had achieved as much as we could, we proved that we weren't just there for 'attention'.
I'm still not sure what you have achieved - if anything. A precise statement detailing exactly what you achieved is needed not just vague hints. Put up or shut up.
[quote][p][bold]Nn[/bold] wrote: "Stuck up pompous idiots stamping their feet and wanting attention. Didn't stick it out like they said they would, all talk no action as per normal." Actually, the reason we left was that we'd got what we were there for, which were all extremely reasonable demands (proved by the fact that the university was willing to negotiate and compromise on all of them very quickly). By leaving as soon as we had achieved as much as we could, we proved that we weren't just there for 'attention'.[/p][/quote]I'm still not sure what you have achieved - if anything. A precise statement detailing exactly what you achieved is needed not just vague hints. Put up or shut up. Eddy Grundy
  • Score: 0

2:08pm Sat 24 Jan 09

Nn says...

achievements:
the university agreed to ..
1)release a statement condemning the attack on the university in gaza
2)make an effort to contribute to the rebuilding of the university in gaza, by providing equipment and sending academic staff
3)raise the issue of investment in arms companies before the relevant committee
4)initiate a process of providing scholarships for Palestinian students
5)suggest to the Master of Balliol college that he should reconsider the lecture series inaugurated by Shimon Peres.
achievements: the university agreed to .. 1)release a statement condemning the attack on the university in gaza 2)make an effort to contribute to the rebuilding of the university in gaza, by providing equipment and sending academic staff 3)raise the issue of investment in arms companies before the relevant committee 4)initiate a process of providing scholarships for Palestinian students 5)suggest to the Master of Balliol college that he should reconsider the lecture series inaugurated by Shimon Peres. Nn
  • Score: 0

3:14pm Sat 24 Jan 09

Eddy Grundy says...

Nn wrote:
achievements: the university agreed to .. 1)release a statement condemning the attack on the university in gaza 2)make an effort to contribute to the rebuilding of the university in gaza, by providing equipment and sending academic staff 3)raise the issue of investment in arms companies before the relevant committee 4)initiate a process of providing scholarships for Palestinian students 5)suggest to the Master of Balliol college that he should reconsider the lecture series inaugurated by Shimon Peres.
1. Has the statement been released yet?
2. Make an effort? Not anything firm agreed then?
3. I'm sure this would prove extreemly inflential - NOT!!!
4. Is this a firm commitment yet?
5. Suggest? Reconsider? That's not an achievement but wish?

And the above could only be achieved by occupying a building? Sorry, but your a joke if you think you have made any difference.
[quote][p][bold]Nn[/bold] wrote: achievements: the university agreed to .. 1)release a statement condemning the attack on the university in gaza 2)make an effort to contribute to the rebuilding of the university in gaza, by providing equipment and sending academic staff 3)raise the issue of investment in arms companies before the relevant committee 4)initiate a process of providing scholarships for Palestinian students 5)suggest to the Master of Balliol college that he should reconsider the lecture series inaugurated by Shimon Peres.[/p][/quote]1. Has the statement been released yet? 2. Make an effort? Not anything firm agreed then? 3. I'm sure this would prove extreemly inflential - NOT!!! 4. Is this a firm commitment yet? 5. Suggest? Reconsider? That's not an achievement but wish? And the above could only be achieved by occupying a building? Sorry, but your a joke if you think you have made any difference. Eddy Grundy
  • Score: 0

11:59pm Sat 24 Jan 09

Hugh Jaeger says...

Ian Sternberg claims the brief student occupation "disrupts Students & Lectures going about their Lawfull Business" (sic). As far as I know the Clarendon Building houses only offices: no teaching or studying takes place there.

Diamond Lil refers to the Holocaust. But Germany's genicode of Jews does not justify an Israeli attack that has killed over 400 children, nearly 170 police, 30 medical staff and four UN staff, injured 5,300 people and made thousands homeless.

Terry Chandler defends Israel's destruction of Gaza as a response to Hamas rocket attacks. However in June 2008 Hamas began a six-month ceasefire to try to get Israel to lift of its illegal blockade of Gaza. But Hamas aren't the only paramilitaries in Gaza, and a few militants continued to fire at Israel. Even so the ceasefire cut rocket attacks on Israel by 98%. Sadly the remaining 2% was excuse enough for Israel to continue the blockade, allowing Gazans only about half the food, fuel, medical supplies and other goods that they needed. After 19 weeks of ceasefire and 17 months of blockade, Hamas lost patience and resumed rocket and mortar attacks on Israel. That gave Israel the excuse it needed to attack Gaza with artillery and aircraft and then invade.

DanOxford's comments that the enemies of the USA and Israel "behead people... and inflict the worst atrocities and indignations upon their own people" may be true of insurgents in Afghanistan and Iraq but generally not of Palestinian militants. Dan is right that Hamas targets rockets and suicide bombs on civilians. But plenty of Muslim scholars are not nutcases: many condemn suicide bombing and make clear that it has no justification in Islam.

Only a small part of Hamas is paramilitary: the rest of it runs schools, hospitals and other social services. An Israeli academic says "approximately 90% of work is in social, welfare, cultural, and educational activities". Many Palestinians suspect Hamas' main rival, the secular Fatah movement, of corruption involving aid money and materials. Many Palestinians prefer Hamas because it seems more puritanical and trustworthy.

Nazi brutality is relevant to Israeli treatment of Arabs, but not in the way Diamond Lil seems to suggest. In 1948 the British left Palestine because they were overwhelmed by terrorism, most of it committed by illegal Jewish militant groups. In the power vacuum left by the British departure the new Israeli state seized control, not only of the 55% of Palestine that the UN had voted to give to Jews but also over half of what the UN had allocated to the Arabs. The new Israel waged an unprovoked war that ethnically cleansed 850,000 Arabs from their homes. Israeli forces massacred Arab villages and towns.

Even some Israelis were horrified. A Jewish politician called Aharon Zisling said "I couldn’t sleep at night… Jews too have committed Nazi acts". Josef Nahmani, a leading figure in the Jewish National Fund for buying up Arab land, wrote about the Israelis committing these atrocities "Where did they come by such a measure of cruelty like Nazis? They had learnt it from them. One officer told me that those who ‘excelled’ had come from the camps".

Israeli treatment of Arabs has been aggressive ever since. Israel started the 1956 and 1967 wars. From 1967 onwards it illegally occupied so much Palestinian, Egyptian and Syrian land that the Arab countries counter-attacked in 1973 to try to recover what Israel had illegally taken. Israel eventually gave Sinai back to Egypt but now Israel and Egypt illegally blockade the Gaza strip. Israel still illegally occupies part of Syria and has housed 18,000 illegal Jewish settlers there. Israel has stolen huge strips of the West Bank and has housed 282,000 illegal Jewish settlers there. Israel has illegally annexed East Jerusalem and housed 184,000 illegal Jewish settlers there. Some of these settlers, e.g. in Hebron, treat Arab-bashing as a pastime and teach their children to join in. Others, e.g. in East Jerusalem, illegally occupy Arab houses and try to drive the Arabs out.

Today Arabs form 20% of Israel's population, but their two political parties hold only 7 of 120 Knesset (Israeli parliament) seats. Israel's electoral commission has banned both Arab parties from standing in the General Election due held in February. If Israel hadn't ethnically cleansed 85% of its Arabs in 1948, its population today would probably have an Arab majority. Israel is democratic only to the extent that apartheid South Africa was democratic: with the West Bank and Gaza strip equating to the "Bantustans" that South Africa created to avoid giving blacks full rights and the vote.

Israel must recognise that squatting on Arab land will never give it security and peace. In the 1990's white South Africa started talks with the ANC that led to majority rule and peace, and then Ulster unionists and Irish nationalists started talks that led to peace and power-sharing. In 2008 Hamas offered a long-term ceasefire and to accept the existance of Israel as long as Israel withdraw from all territory it has occupied since 1967. Israel's rejection of this offer was a mistake that has already cost about 2,000 lives, most of them Palestinian. What worked in South Africa and Northern Ireland could be the most realistic hope for Palestine and Israel.
Ian Sternberg claims the brief student occupation "disrupts Students & Lectures going about their Lawfull Business" (sic). As far as I know the Clarendon Building houses only offices: no teaching or studying takes place there. Diamond Lil refers to the Holocaust. But Germany's genicode of Jews does not justify an Israeli attack that has killed over 400 children, nearly 170 police, 30 medical staff and four UN staff, injured 5,300 people and made thousands homeless. Terry Chandler defends Israel's destruction of Gaza as a response to Hamas rocket attacks. However in June 2008 Hamas began a six-month ceasefire to try to get Israel to lift of its illegal blockade of Gaza. But Hamas aren't the only paramilitaries in Gaza, and a few militants continued to fire at Israel. Even so the ceasefire cut rocket attacks on Israel by 98%. Sadly the remaining 2% was excuse enough for Israel to continue the blockade, allowing Gazans only about half the food, fuel, medical supplies and other goods that they needed. After 19 weeks of ceasefire and 17 months of blockade, Hamas lost patience and resumed rocket and mortar attacks on Israel. That gave Israel the excuse it needed to attack Gaza with artillery and aircraft and then invade. DanOxford's comments that the enemies of the USA and Israel "behead people... and inflict the worst atrocities and indignations upon their own people" may be true of insurgents in Afghanistan and Iraq but generally not of Palestinian militants. Dan is right that Hamas targets rockets and suicide bombs on civilians. But plenty of Muslim scholars are not nutcases: many condemn suicide bombing and make clear that it has no justification in Islam. Only a small part of Hamas is paramilitary: the rest of it runs schools, hospitals and other social services. An Israeli academic says "approximately 90% of [Hamas'] work is in social, welfare, cultural, and educational activities". Many Palestinians suspect Hamas' main rival, the secular Fatah movement, of corruption involving aid money and materials. Many Palestinians prefer Hamas because it seems more puritanical and trustworthy. Nazi brutality is relevant to Israeli treatment of Arabs, but not in the way Diamond Lil seems to suggest. In 1948 the British left Palestine because they were overwhelmed by terrorism, most of it committed by illegal Jewish militant groups. In the power vacuum left by the British departure the new Israeli state seized control, not only of the 55% of Palestine that the UN had voted to give to Jews but also over half of what the UN had allocated to the Arabs. The new Israel waged an unprovoked war that ethnically cleansed 850,000 Arabs from their homes. Israeli forces massacred Arab villages and towns. Even some Israelis were horrified. A Jewish politician called Aharon Zisling said "I couldn’t sleep at night… Jews too have committed Nazi acts". Josef Nahmani, a leading figure in the Jewish National Fund for buying up Arab land, wrote about the Israelis committing these atrocities "Where did they come by such a measure of cruelty like Nazis? They had learnt it from them. One officer told me that those who ‘excelled’ had come from the camps". Israeli treatment of Arabs has been aggressive ever since. Israel started the 1956 and 1967 wars. From 1967 onwards it illegally occupied so much Palestinian, Egyptian and Syrian land that the Arab countries counter-attacked in 1973 to try to recover what Israel had illegally taken. Israel eventually gave Sinai back to Egypt but now Israel and Egypt illegally blockade the Gaza strip. Israel still illegally occupies part of Syria and has housed 18,000 illegal Jewish settlers there. Israel has stolen huge strips of the West Bank and has housed 282,000 illegal Jewish settlers there. Israel has illegally annexed East Jerusalem and housed 184,000 illegal Jewish settlers there. Some of these settlers, e.g. in Hebron, treat Arab-bashing as a pastime and teach their children to join in. Others, e.g. in East Jerusalem, illegally occupy Arab houses and try to drive the Arabs out. Today Arabs form 20% of Israel's population, but their two political parties hold only 7 of 120 Knesset (Israeli parliament) seats. Israel's electoral commission has banned both Arab parties from standing in the General Election due held in February. If Israel hadn't ethnically cleansed 85% of its Arabs in 1948, its population today would probably have an Arab majority. Israel is democratic only to the extent that apartheid South Africa was democratic: with the West Bank and Gaza strip equating to the "Bantustans" that South Africa created to avoid giving blacks full rights and the vote. Israel must recognise that squatting on Arab land will never give it security and peace. In the 1990's white South Africa started talks with the ANC that led to majority rule and peace, and then Ulster unionists and Irish nationalists started talks that led to peace and power-sharing. In 2008 Hamas offered a long-term ceasefire and to accept the existance of Israel as long as Israel withdraw from all territory it has occupied since 1967. Israel's rejection of this offer was a mistake that has already cost about 2,000 lives, most of them Palestinian. What worked in South Africa and Northern Ireland could be the most realistic hope for Palestine and Israel. Hugh Jaeger
  • Score: 0

12:01am Mon 26 Jan 09

Ian Sternberg says...

Dear Hugh ,

Yes - You are probably correct that The Clarendon Building houses only offices - but it was still very disruptive & frightning for any admin staff working in The Building .

DanOxford's comments are correct in that two reservist Israeli Soldiers Who had taken a wrong turn were lynched in Ramalah in 2000 , two 14 year old children ( Kobi Mandell & Yosef Ishran ) were beaten to death with rocks in 2001 . A mother & two chidren were shot at kibbutz Metzer in 2002. Large number of Israelis
( and Palestinians Who have been accused of " Collaboration " ) have been killed with knives & Axes .

Israel annexed The Golan Heights because when Syria controlled it They used the height to fire at Israeli areas below .

Your post is 3 days out of date - The Israeli Supreme Court overturned the suspension of Arab political parties on wednedsay .

You are 100% right that Israel $ The Palestinian Groups should get back around the negotiating table to sort Their problems out - but this negotiation should be carried out in good faith & aspire to a permanent peace for the two Peoples - not a Temporary ceasefire that will be broken as soon as HAMAS figure that Israel has weakened & violence will suit Their Political Strategy !

Dear Hugh , Yes - You are probably correct that The Clarendon Building houses only offices - but it was still very disruptive & frightning for any admin staff working in The Building . DanOxford's comments are correct in that two reservist Israeli Soldiers Who had taken a wrong turn were lynched in Ramalah in 2000 , two 14 year old children ( Kobi Mandell & Yosef Ishran ) were beaten to death with rocks in 2001 . A mother & two chidren were shot at kibbutz Metzer in 2002. Large number of Israelis ( and Palestinians Who have been accused of " Collaboration " ) have been killed with knives & Axes . Israel annexed The Golan Heights because when Syria controlled it They used the height to fire at Israeli areas below . Your post is 3 days out of date - The Israeli Supreme Court overturned the suspension of Arab political parties on wednedsay . You are 100% right that Israel $ The Palestinian Groups should get back around the negotiating table to sort Their problems out - but this negotiation should be carried out in good faith & aspire to a permanent peace for the two Peoples - not a Temporary ceasefire that will be broken as soon as HAMAS figure that Israel has weakened & violence will suit Their Political Strategy ! Ian Sternberg
  • Score: 0

6:45pm Tue 27 Jan 09

Hugh Jaeger says...

In June 2008 Hamas offered Israel recognition within her 2008 borders and a long-term ceasefire. Israel preferred to continue blockading Gaza and raiding the territory until after four and a half months it finally managed to provoke Hamas to end its ceasefire and resume rocket attacks.

Syria has never made an unprovoked attack on Israel. In 1948 Syrian troops tried to defend Palestinian villages in Galilee but Israel drove out both the Syrian army and the Palestinian villagers.

In the mid-1960's Syrian forces opened fire from the Golan when Israel deliberately and repeatedly provoked them along the armistice line. Eventually Israel goaded Syria into preparing for war. Moshe Dayan has admitted the strategy and described the tactics.

In 1973 Egypt and Syria unsuccessfully attacked Israel in order to recover territory that Israel had illegally conquered in 1967. In 1981 Israel unilaterally and illegally annexed the Golan Heights, in defiance of UN Security Council resolution 242.

Despite Israeli law-breaking and provocation, Syria has not attacked Israel for 36 years. Israel has no security reason to hang on to the Golan.

Israel illegally occupies the Golan Heights because it gets 15% of its water from there. Israel abstracts from the Sea of Galilee and the River Jordan colossal amounts of water that should reach Jordan and the West Bank. On the West Bank 282,000 illegal Israeli settlers hog 80% of the water supply, leaving 2,345,000 Palestinians to manage on the remaining 20%.

Israel could offer to withdraw from the Golan in return for a treaty with Syria on water. Syria could guarantee Israel a water supply in return for Israel promising not to take too much and to pay a fair price for it.

Israel can leave the Al Assanyieh‎ wind farm in the Golan as a goodwill present to the Syrians. Its 600 kiloWatt turbines are garden ornaments compared with the 5 MegaWatt ones that Germany is planting in the North Sea.
In June 2008 Hamas offered Israel recognition within her 2008 borders and a long-term ceasefire. Israel preferred to continue blockading Gaza and raiding the territory until after four and a half months it finally managed to provoke Hamas to end its ceasefire and resume rocket attacks. Syria has never made an unprovoked attack on Israel. In 1948 Syrian troops tried to defend Palestinian villages in Galilee but Israel drove out both the Syrian army and the Palestinian villagers. In the mid-1960's Syrian forces opened fire from the Golan when Israel deliberately and repeatedly provoked them along the armistice line. Eventually Israel goaded Syria into preparing for war. Moshe Dayan has admitted the strategy and described the tactics. In 1973 Egypt and Syria unsuccessfully attacked Israel in order to recover territory that Israel had illegally conquered in 1967. In 1981 Israel unilaterally and illegally annexed the Golan Heights, in defiance of UN Security Council resolution 242. Despite Israeli law-breaking and provocation, Syria has not attacked Israel for 36 years. Israel has no security reason to hang on to the Golan. Israel illegally occupies the Golan Heights because it gets 15% of its water from there. Israel abstracts from the Sea of Galilee and the River Jordan colossal amounts of water that should reach Jordan and the West Bank. On the West Bank 282,000 illegal Israeli settlers hog 80% of the water supply, leaving 2,345,000 Palestinians to manage on the remaining 20%. Israel could offer to withdraw from the Golan in return for a treaty with Syria on water. Syria could guarantee Israel a water supply in return for Israel promising not to take too much and to pay a fair price for it. Israel can leave the Al Assanyieh‎ wind farm in the Golan as a goodwill present to the Syrians. Its 600 kiloWatt turbines are garden ornaments compared with the 5 MegaWatt ones that Germany is planting in the North Sea. Hugh Jaeger
  • Score: 0

6:47pm Tue 27 Jan 09

Hugh Jaeger says...

Sorry, I meant recognition within Israel's pre-1967 borders.
Sorry, I meant recognition within Israel's pre-1967 borders. Hugh Jaeger
  • Score: 0

11:24am Wed 28 Jan 09

Hugh Jaeger says...

IanSternberg mentions the bloody lynching of two Israeli soldiers in Ramallah in 2000. These murders echoe the lynching of two British army corporals in Belfast in 1988. Britain's response in 1988 was to continue working for peace, which it achieved within a decade. Israel's response in 2000 was to use its air force to destroy two police stations, a militia headquarters and a Palestinian radio station.

Eight years later Israel is still fighting arab militants and killing hundreds of civilians every year. Sternberg can name the Israeli victims of Hamas rockets because, thank goodness, they are so few. I cannot name the people that Israel killed in Gaza in three weeks because there are so many. Israel has murdered 1,330 people in three weeks including 437 children, 111 women, 123 elderly men, 231 policemen, 16 medical workers, 13 firefighters and 5 UN staff.

Isaiah told ancient Israel that God wanted them to be "a light to the nations" to extend his salvation to the ends of the Earth. Instead modern Israel murders its neighbours by the thousand and destabilises the entire region.
IanSternberg mentions the bloody lynching of two Israeli soldiers in Ramallah in 2000. These murders echoe the lynching of two British army corporals in Belfast in 1988. Britain's response in 1988 was to continue working for peace, which it achieved within a decade. Israel's response in 2000 was to use its air force to destroy two police stations, a militia headquarters and a Palestinian radio station. Eight years later Israel is still fighting arab militants and killing hundreds of civilians every year. Sternberg can name the Israeli victims of Hamas rockets because, thank goodness, they are so few. I cannot name the people that Israel killed in Gaza in three weeks because there are so many. Israel has murdered 1,330 people in three weeks including 437 children, 111 women, 123 elderly men, 231 policemen, 16 medical workers, 13 firefighters and 5 UN staff. Isaiah told ancient Israel that God wanted them to be "a light to the nations" to extend his salvation to the ends of the Earth. Instead modern Israel murders its neighbours by the thousand and destabilises the entire region. Hugh Jaeger
  • Score: 0

2:41pm Wed 28 Jan 09

Ian Sternberg says...

Starting off My new policy of not mentioning names :

I hope that The Palestinian Leaders take a similar attitude towards engaging in The Peace Process as The Leaders of Sinn-Fein as it was Their responsible involvement in Northern Ireland's Democratic Politics which helped to achieve progress for both Communities in Ulster .

My comment wasn't just about the deaths & injuries caused by Quassam & Grad Rockets - it mentioned just 7 of the over 1000 Israeli victims over the last eight years . Israel is a small country and just about everbody knows someone Who has been killed or injured in this Conflict -this is also the case with British Jews Who have friends & Family in Israel - this is why it is so personal for Us & why We respond so Tenaciously !

Israel is indeed
" a light to the nations " - People should know about the thousands of Medical advances that Israeli scientists have made especially in regard to Heart Disease & Cancer . Israel is a leading pioneer in Solar Technology & Irrigation techniques which we teach to people in developing Countries . Israeli Hi-Tech companies helped develop much of the Telecommunications industry ( Mobile Phones & The Internet ) IDF Medical & Rescue Units helped Refugees in Rwanda & Kosovo and helped victims of the Turkish Earthquake - These are just a tiny number of all the good things that Israel does to help The International Community - but You would never hear about Them from listening to the news or readong the papers . I am enormously proud of what Our tiny Nation has achieved in It's History & I know that We are going to do much more to help heal the Worlds problems .

For more information about these types of International Assistance & Innovations Please go to :

www.israel21c.org
Starting off My new policy of not mentioning names : I hope that The Palestinian Leaders take a similar attitude towards engaging in The Peace Process as The Leaders of Sinn-Fein as it was Their responsible involvement in Northern Ireland's Democratic Politics which helped to achieve progress for both Communities in Ulster . My comment wasn't just about the deaths & injuries caused by Quassam & Grad Rockets - it mentioned just 7 of the over 1000 Israeli victims over the last eight years . Israel is a small country and just about everbody knows someone Who has been killed or injured in this Conflict -this is also the case with British Jews Who have friends & Family in Israel - this is why it is so personal for Us & why We respond so Tenaciously ! Israel is indeed " a light to the nations " - People should know about the thousands of Medical advances that Israeli scientists have made especially in regard to Heart Disease & Cancer . Israel is a leading pioneer in Solar Technology & Irrigation techniques which we teach to people in developing Countries . Israeli Hi-Tech companies helped develop much of the Telecommunications industry ( Mobile Phones & The Internet ) IDF Medical & Rescue Units helped Refugees in Rwanda & Kosovo and helped victims of the Turkish Earthquake - These are just a tiny number of all the good things that Israel does to help The International Community - but You would never hear about Them from listening to the news or readong the papers . I am enormously proud of what Our tiny Nation has achieved in It's History & I know that We are going to do much more to help heal the Worlds problems . For more information about these types of International Assistance & Innovations Please go to : www.israel21c.org Ian Sternberg
  • Score: 0

9:37pm Sun 8 Feb 09

Hugh Jaeger says...

In eight years 2000-2007 Palestinian militants killed more than 1,000 Israelis but Israel killed 4,500 Palestinians. Israel's recent three-week invasion of Gaza killed 1,330 Palestinians but only 13 Israelis, and several of those were from Israeli "friendly fire". Whichever Zionist parties form the Israeli government, the IDF and armed illegal Israeli settlers are allowed to continue "shooting fish in a barrel". Zionism seems to embrace a crude arithmetic of "killing more of them than they kill of us". This is no light to any nation, except a few despotates such as Burma, Zimbabwe, and the Chinese occupation of Tibet.

No Jewish contribution to art, science or commerce justifies the existence of a Zionist state on Arab land. Jews in Gentile countries have achieved much for mankind without needing a Zionist state. The creation Israel against the will of Palestine's rightful inhabitants and the way that Israel has behaved for 60 years shame the good name of the Jewish people.

Israel's irrigation achievement is that its National Water Carrier steals water from the Jordan that should supply Jordan and the West Bank. Israel also steals water from the Golan Heights which it has illegally occupied since 1967 and illegally annexed in 1981. Illegal Israeli settlers are now 20% of the population of the West Bank but hog 80% of that territory's water.

Since Israel illegally expanded itself in 1967 it has destroyed a quarter of a million olive and citrus trees belonging to Palestinian farmers. Illegal Israeli settlers on the West Bank sell their illegal produce to British supermarkets including Sansbury and Waitrose.

Far from healing the World's problems, Israel IS a problem. Its 61-year disobedience to UN resolution 194 continues to cause an unbearable refugee burden on Jordan, Lebanon and the UN. Israel's injustice to Palestinians and defiance of international laws give Hamas and Hezbollah their raison d'etre and give Iran and Al-Qaeda fertile material to radicalise young muslims. Israel's illegal nuclear weapons have given Iran an incentive to develop nuclear race.

The occupation of the Clarendon Building by 80 students is as nothing compared with the occupation of Arab land by 485,000 illegal Israeli settlers. The students successfully publicised and challenged the links that University of Oxford and Balliol College have with Israel. All protest should be entirely lawful, but I respect the students for their achievement.
In eight years 2000-2007 Palestinian militants killed more than 1,000 Israelis but Israel killed 4,500 Palestinians. Israel's recent three-week invasion of Gaza killed 1,330 Palestinians but only 13 Israelis, and several of those were from Israeli "friendly fire". Whichever Zionist parties form the Israeli government, the IDF and armed illegal Israeli settlers are allowed to continue "shooting fish in a barrel". Zionism seems to embrace a crude arithmetic of "killing more of them than they kill of us". This is no light to any nation, except a few despotates such as Burma, Zimbabwe, and the Chinese occupation of Tibet. No Jewish contribution to art, science or commerce justifies the existence of a Zionist state on Arab land. Jews in Gentile countries have achieved much for mankind without needing a Zionist state. The creation Israel against the will of Palestine's rightful inhabitants and the way that Israel has behaved for 60 years shame the good name of the Jewish people. Israel's irrigation achievement is that its National Water Carrier steals water from the Jordan that should supply Jordan and the West Bank. Israel also steals water from the Golan Heights which it has illegally occupied since 1967 and illegally annexed in 1981. Illegal Israeli settlers are now 20% of the population of the West Bank but hog 80% of that territory's water. Since Israel illegally expanded itself in 1967 it has destroyed a quarter of a million olive and citrus trees belonging to Palestinian farmers. Illegal Israeli settlers on the West Bank sell their illegal produce to British supermarkets including Sansbury and Waitrose. Far from healing the World's problems, Israel IS a problem. Its 61-year disobedience to UN resolution 194 continues to cause an unbearable refugee burden on Jordan, Lebanon and the UN. Israel's injustice to Palestinians and defiance of international laws give Hamas and Hezbollah their raison d'etre and give Iran and Al-Qaeda fertile material to radicalise young muslims. Israel's illegal nuclear weapons have given Iran an incentive to develop nuclear race. The occupation of the Clarendon Building by 80 students is as nothing compared with the occupation of Arab land by 485,000 illegal Israeli settlers. The students successfully publicised and challenged the links that University of Oxford and Balliol College have with Israel. All protest should be entirely lawful, but I respect the students for their achievement. Hugh Jaeger
  • Score: 0

3:13pm Tue 10 Feb 09

Ian Sternberg says...

The achievements of Israel in helping mankind have been characteristically ignored & belittled in the last post - it doesn't surprise Me in the least that this negative attitude has been taken - The Palestinist Lobby really doesn't do constructive debate or activities .

How would The IDF Medical & Rescue Units have been able to help those suffering people without having a State Apparatus ( Aircraft , Unit Training , Transport Logistics )to reach those areas ?

How many of those Diaspora Jewish Scientists , Doctors , Inventors ended up being killed in The Holocaust ? The State of Israel gives a potential place of safety to Diaspora Jews & a framework for Our Scientific & Medical innovations .
The achievements of Israel in helping mankind have been characteristically ignored & belittled in the last post - it doesn't surprise Me in the least that this negative attitude has been taken - The Palestinist Lobby really doesn't do constructive debate or activities . How would The IDF Medical & Rescue Units have been able to help those suffering people without having a State Apparatus ( Aircraft , Unit Training , Transport Logistics )to reach those areas ? How many of those Diaspora Jewish Scientists , Doctors , Inventors ended up being killed in The Holocaust ? The State of Israel gives a potential place of safety to Diaspora Jews & a framework for Our Scientific & Medical innovations . Ian Sternberg
  • Score: 0
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