Gaza | Iraq | Venezuela

Jeremy Scahill: Blacklisted Academic Norman Finkelstein on Gaza, “the World’s Largest Concentration Camp” (Intercept)

Israel has once again conducted a premeditated, full-scale massacre in broad daylight, in front of the cameras of the world. Once again, it took place in Gaza.
On May 14, Israeli snipers and other forces gunned down more than 60 Palestinians, and wounded thousands of others, including civilians, journalists, and paramedics. “You try nonlethal means and they don’t work,” said Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. “So you’re left with bad choices. It’s a bad deal. You know, you try and you go for below the knee, and sometimes it doesn’t work, and unfortunately these things are avoidable.”
It appears that the only way not to be killed, according to Netanyahu, is to meekly accept imprisonment inside the prison of Gaza. Among those killed by Israeli forces was an 8-month-old infant. Her name was Laila al-Ghandour. They also killed at least seven other children and a man in a wheelchair, and that man had lost his legs after they had to be amputated following an earlier Israeli attack.

Robert Fisk: How long after this week’s Gaza massacre are we going to continue pretending that the Palestinians are non-people? (Independent)

Remember how they were to blame for their own exodus seven decades ago, because they followed the instructions of radio stations to leave their homes until the Jews of Israel were ‘driven into the sea’. Only, of course, the radio broadcasts never existed.

Chemi Shalev: Carnage in Gaza Threatens to Revive Analogies Between Israel and Apartheid South Africa (Haaretz via Google)

American Evangelicals who now support Israel’s right-wing policies were once staunch defenders of Pretoria’s white supremacist regime. … Just as Evangelicals depict Israel today as the forward outpost of Western civilization against Islamic hordes, prominent Evangelical leaders such as Falwell, Jimmy Swaggart and Pat Robertson described apartheid South Africa as a vital Christian bastion against godless Communism. They preferred to camouflage their long-held support for segregation, which was probably one of their primemotivations to support South Africa’s white rulers in the first place. Their support for Israel may have more to do with biblical prophecies of End Times and their virulent opposition to Islam, but Israel has done much in recent years to portray itself as racist.

Roger Harris: Venezuela on the Eve of Presidential Elections: The US Empire Isn’t Sitting by Idly (CounterPunch)

Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro is the frontrunner in the presidential elections scheduled for May 20. If past pronouncements and practice by the US empire are any indication, every effort will be made to oust an avowed socialist from what is considered the US’ “backyard.” …
In addition to summoning Venezuela’s sycophantic domestic opposition, who support sanctions against their own people, the US has gone on the offensive using the regional Lima Group to destabilize Venezuela. The group was established last August in Lima, the capital of Peru, as a block to oppose Venezuela…
Across the Atlantic on May 3, the European Parliament demanded Venezuela suspend presidential elections. Four days later, US Vice President Pence called on the OAS to expel Venezuela. Adding injury to insult, the US announced yet another round of sanctions. Then the next day, US ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley joined the chorus calling on President Maduro to cancel the presidential election and resign.

Alex MacDonald, Mustafa Abu Sneineh: First female Communist elected in Iraq’s holiest city calls for ‘social justice’ (Middle East Eye)

Iraqis appear to have broken with the political establishment in response to what they see as rampant corruption and incompetence.
The biggest winner in Saturday’s elections was the boycott movement, which was evident after it emerged that only 44.5 percent of eligible voters went to the polls.
But those who did vote overwhelmingly cast their ballot for the Sairoun Alliance, a coalition of supporters of the Shia cleric Muqtada al-Sadr and the Iraqi Communist Party (ICP), as well as the smaller Iraqi Republican Party.

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