Israeli settler runs over, seriously injures Palestinian man south of Nablus


BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — A 40 year-old Palestinian man was seriously injured after he was run over by an Israeli settler car south of Nablus city in the northern occupied West Bank on Friday, according to Israeli police and Hebrew-language media.

Hebrew news websites reported that an Israeli settler ran over the Palestinian while he was walking on the side of the road, causing serious injuries to him. An Israeli ambulance reportedly transferred the Palestinian to Rabin Medical Center in the Israeli city of Petah Tikva.
The identity of the Palestinian man and of the settler who attacked him remained unknown.
Israeli Police Spokeswoman Luba al-Samri confirmed the incident in a statement, saying a “Palestinian was ran over Friday by an Israeli vehicle near Ariel settlement, causing the Palestinians to be seriously injured.”
Al-Samari added that Israeli police opened investigation to uncover the circumstances of the incident, which she referred to as an “accident.”
(Source / 06.01.2017)

Shariffa Carlos amazing Journey to Islam

Article of 14 September 2014

Sister Shariffa Carlos was being groomed by individuals in high Government positions in US to study, learn and then go to Egypt to destroy Islam by instigating the ‘oppressed’ Muslim women. They had their plans and Allah had his Plan. Allah is the best planner!!!! read her story in her own words……….


The story of how I reverted to al Islam is a story of plans.  I made plans; the group I was with made plans, and Allah made plans.  And Allah is the Best of Planners.  When I was a teenager, I came to the attention of a group of people with a very sinister agenda. They were and probably still are a loose association of individuals who work in government positions but have a special agenda — to destroy Islam.  It is not a governmental group that I am aware of, they simply use their positions in the US government to advance their cause.

One member of this group approached me because he saw that I was articulate, motivated and very much the women’s rights advocate.  He told me that if I studied International Relations with an emphasis in the Middle East, he would guarantee me a job at the American Embassy in Egypt.  He wanted me to eventually go there to use my position in the country to talk to Muslim women and encourage the fledgling women’s rights movement.  I thought this was a great idea.  I had seen the Muslim women on TV; I knew they were a poor oppressed group, and I wanted to lead them to the light of 20th century freedom.

With this intention, I went to college and began my education.  I studied Quran, hadith and Islamic history.  I also studied the ways I could use this information.  I learned how to twist the words to say what I wanted them to say.  It was a valuable tool.  Once I started learning, however, I began to be intrigued by this message.  It made sense.  That was very scary.  Therefore, in order to counteract this effect, I began to take classes in Christianity.  I chose to take classes with this one professor on campus because he had a good reputation and he had a Ph.D. in Theology from Harvard University.  I felt I was in good hands.  I was, but not for the reasons I thought.  It turns out that this professor was a Unitarian Christian.  He did not believe in the trinity or the divinity of Jesus.  In actuality, he believed that Jesus was a prophet.

He proceeded to prove this by taking the bible from its sources in Greek, Hebrew and Aramaic and show where they were changed.  As he did this, he showed the historical events which shaped and followed these changes.  By the time I finished this class, my deen [religion] had been destroyed, but I was still not ready to accept Islam.  As time went on, I continued to study, for myself and for my future career.  This took about three years.  In this time, I would question Muslims about their beliefs.  One of the Individuals I questioned was a Muslim brother with the MSA [Muslim Students’ Association].  Alhamdulllah, he saw my interest in the deen, and made it a personal effort to educate me about Islam. May Allah increase his reward.  He would give me dawaa [i.e. tell me about Islam] at every opportunity which presented itself.

One day, this man contacts me, and he tells me about a group of Muslims who were visiting in town.  He wanted me to meet them.  I agreed.  I went to meet with them after Ishaa [night] prayer.  I was led to a room with at least 20 men in it.  They all made space for me to sit, and I was placed face to face with an elderly Pakistani gentleman.  Mashallah, this brother was a very knowledgeable man in matters of Christianity.  He and I discussed and argued the varying parts of the bible and the Quran until the fajr [dawn prayer].  At this point, after having listened to this wise man tell me what I already knew, based on the class I had taken in Christianity, he did what no other individual had ever done.  He invited me to become a Muslim.

In the three years I had been searching and researching, no one had ever invited me.  I had been taught, argued with and even insulted, but never invited. May Allah guide us all.  So when he invited me, it clicked.  I realized this was the time.  I knew it was the truth, and I had to make a decision.  Alhamdulillah [All praise be to Allah], Allah opened my heart, and I said, “Yes.  I want to be a Muslim.”  With that, the man led me in the shahadah [the testimony of faith] – in English and in Arabic.  I swear by Allah that when I took the shahadah, I felt the strangest sensation.  I felt as if a huge, physical weight had just been lifted off my chest; I gasped for breath as if I were breathing for the first time in my life. Alhamdulillah, Allah had given me a new life — a clean slate — a chance for Jennah [Paradise], and I pray that I live the rest of my days and die as a Muslim.  Ameen.

(Source / 06.01.2017)

Millions in Damascus face water shortage

Syrian refugees fill up bottles with water [Anadolu]

Syrian refugees fill up bottles with water

About 5.5 million inhabitants of Damascus and its environs have been cut off from the central water supply, the UN has warned.

Some 70 per cent of the capital’s water comes from the valley of Wadi Barada, which is under opposition control.

Deputy official spokespersons of the UN Secretary-General Farhan Haq speaking to reporters said: “The 5.5 million residents of Damascus and its suburbs remain cut off from water supplies because of the fighting in Wadi Barada, where the city receives 70 per cent of the water.”

The shortage of supply is reported to have increased water prices considerably. According to Haq, drinking water in the city increased by between six and ten times, and the shortage threatens the spread of infectious diseases.

The UN also reported that the authorities in Damascus announced the implementation of an action plan in an emergency situation to meet the basic needs of its inhabitants. Trucks are delivering water tanks to schools, hospitals and bakeries, as well as in a number of areas of the city.

Huck also confirmed that the UN has restored and arranged the 120 wells in the Damascus area, which meets a third of the demand. “On December 22 these wells were the only water source in Damascus,” the UN representative said. The UN has also provided the authorities with equipment to check water purity, generators and fuel, which ensure the operation of the pumps.

The main water source of Damascus is El-Fiji in the valley of Wadi Barada. Last month, opposition forces blew up the pipeline supplying the city’s water. In recent weeks, Syrian troops carried out operations to seize control of area. According to the UN, fighting in the area has forced thousands to flee.

(Source / 06.01.2017)

MP Qar’awi slams PA political arrests despite reconciliation efforts


Palestinian lawmaker Fathi Qar’awi has denounced the escalating political arrests taking place in the West Bank despite the renewed efforts to hold reconciliation meetings between the Palestinian rivals.

“We deplore the ongoing arrest campaign that the [Palestinian Authority] security apparatuses have launched against their own people, especially the university students who are about to take final exams,” Qar’awi told the Palestinian Information Center (PIC).

He stressed the need for halting the political arrest campaign in the West Bank in order to provide the atmosphere for the recent efforts being made at home and abroad to heal the rift in the Palestinian arena.

The lawmaker warned that “any reconciliation efforts without halting political arrests would be hollow and unsuccessful.”

(Source / 06.01.2017)

If Not in Syria, We Should Have Fought Takfiris in Iran: Leader

رهبر انقلاب نخبگان

TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei said Iran could have fought a war inside its borders if the enemy threats had not been thwarted in Syria.

“If the ill-wishers and seditionists, who are the puppets of the US and Zionism, had not been confronted (in Syria), we should have stood against them in Tehran, Fars, Khorasan and Esfahan,” Ayatollah Khamenei said in remarks published Thursday.

The Leader made the remarks this week during a meeting with the families of Iranian commandos killed in Syria, in which he paid tribute to the memory of those who lost their lives in the battle against Takfiri terrorists.

“Not only the army, but also the entire nation is proud of these martyrs,” said Ayatollah Khamenei, whose remarks were reported by several Iranian news agencies, Press TV reported.

Earlier Thursday, a senior military commander said Iran’s armed forces are capable of thwarting any US threats due to the Islamic Republic’s achievements in enhancing the country’s military might.

Brigadier General Hossein Salami, the second-in-command of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC), touched on US strategies against Iran during the imposed Iran-Iraq war in 1980s.

“They (the US) sought to undermine us in the war, but we managed to build an immense missile and marine power and an endless ground force,” he said in the Iranian city of Yazd, adding Iran has built up so much power that has made it “capable of overcoming the US.”

“Today, no one talks about overthrowing the (Islamic) establishment and military invasion of Iran, because the more the enemy fought with this nation, the stronger the Iranian nation became,” he added.

Salami pointed to Iran’s awareness of the extent of Washington’s real power. “We know that the capacity of the US, Europe and their regional allies for the dominance over the Muslim world is diminishing.”

The commander said US attempts to undermine Iran’s influence in the region have prompted the Islamic Republic to promote its weight in different parts of the Muslim world, including in Syria, Lebanon and Palestine.

“In Iraq, we witness what kind of power has been created. The Americans are not capable of taking action in Iraq, but the Iraqi popular mobilization forces, inspired by Iran’s Islamic Revolution, have now taken the initiative in Iraq’s field developments,” Salami added.

Another IRGC commander praised Iran’s military prowess. Speaking at a conference in Fars Province in southern Iran, commander of the IRGC’s Aerospace Division Brigadier General Amirali Hajizadeh elaborated on Iran’s success in achieving self-sufficiency in its defense industry.

“Today, we are capable of designing and manufacturing any missile and aircraft that we need,” Hajizadeh said.

In recent years, Iran has made great achievements in its defense sector and attained self-sufficiency in producing essential military equipment and systems.

The Islamic Republic has repeatedly assured other states that its military might poses no threat to other countries since the Islamic Republic’s defense doctrine is based entirely on deterrence.

(Source / 06.01.2017)

Israeli municipality threatens to raze home, displace family in Silwan


The Israeli municipal authority in Occupied Jerusalem has notified a Palestinian citizen of its intention to demolish his home in Silwan district for the second time and displace his family at the pretext of unlicensed construction.

According to Wadi Hilweh Information Center in Silwan, Issa Ja’afera, a Jerusalemite citizen, recently built a makeshift home made of wood and steel sheets after the municipality knocked down his house on October 26, 2016.

As a result of Israel’s racist demolition policy, Ja’afera and his eight family members will become homeless again.

Several court hearings were held in vain to postpone the demolition of his home, and the Israeli municipality refuses to impose a financial penalty on him in order to delay the demolition measure.

Ja’afera said the municipality ordered him to remove his own home or else he would incur demolition expenses amounting to 40,000 shekels.

“I will not demolish my home, and I cannot even think about it. It is impossible for me to demolish my own home with my own hands,” he said.

(Source / 06.01.2017)

Opinion: Obama and the Palestinian Fig Leaf

In the days that Fleet Street was the home of the British press many clichés circulated in the public bars as gospel truth of journalism. One such was the claim that the safest issues to write an editorial about were Palestine and Afghanistan. Six hundred words on why Palestine needed a better deal or why Afghanistan had to be helped to develop its economy would make the writer feel good about himself while the paper could pose as a fount of wisdom- all that without committing anyone to anything let alone upsetting any applecart.

It seems that the administration of President Barack Obama has adopted at least part of the cliché by suddenly feeling an upsurge of sympathy for the Palestinian cause. For more than a week the White House has been spreading the news that the US decided not to veto a resolution critical of settlement buildings in Israel on Obama’s “firm instructions.”

The resolution, numbered 2334, is marketed as an attempt at reviving the mythical peace process by fomenting confusion regarding other key resolutions of the Security Council, on the subject, notably the famous 242. It makes a set of recommendations to Israel without even hinting at what might be done if they are ignored. More immediately, it gives Israeli Prime Minister Benyamin Netanyahu additional arguments in favor of its “stand firm and fast, no compromise” stance that he tries to justify with reference to an uncertain international situation compounded by Obama’s apparent wish to fire parting shots at his Israeli bête-noire.

You need not be an expert in diplomacy to know that the resolution reduces any chance there might have been for a two-state solution, a chimera put in circulation by the then juvenile United Nations and later given a second life by President George W Bush. Because Obama is intelligent enough to know this, the only reason for his 11th hour activism on this issue must be his desire to hide the total favor of his lackluster presidency, especially in international affairs. One could already imagine him claiming in his memoirs that he had “worked hard” for a two-state solution until the last moments of his presence in the White House. (I wish Senator George Mitchell would write about his experience as Obama’s Middle East peace appointee and how the 11th hour self-styled peacemaker effectively sabotaged every practical step in that direction.)

Those who might ask why Obama didn’t do a thing eight years, or even two years ago, must remember that he was more concerned with his petty electoral calculations than any desire for justice for the Palestinians. In 2008 he needed the support of Jewish Americans in such crucial states as Florida and Ohio; and they did help by giving him 85 per cent of their votes. Last year he had the same calculation, this time in favor of Mrs. Hillary Clinton, his Democrat Party’s presidential candidate. No longer in need of electoral calculations, he can rediscover a conscience that reminds him of his attachment in his youth to the Palestinian cause.

Obama’s foreign policy factotum John Kerry has also been searching for a fig leaf to hide the nakedness of his failure as Secretary of State. His entourage tells me that he wanted to make a big speech on the subject in 2014, presumably to divert attention from his and Obama’s abject failures on Georgia, the Baltic States, Turkey, Egypt, Poland, Ukraine and Syria among other places. According to the yarn spun by his entourage, Kerry did not trigger his logorrhea because Obama ordered him to remain silent after the 2016 presidential election.

With that order no longer in force, Kerry, too, could build a bit of a legacy with a 60-minute diatribe that is bound to be studied as a model of confusion and dishonesty in diplomacy. According to French officials, Kerry has also asked to be allowed to make another lengthy speech in Paris later this month on the same subject as another failed president, Francois Hollande, launches an international peace conference on Palestine in Paris. Well, there is no reason why Hollande should be denied the fig-leaf that Obama and Kerry try to procure for themselves in the name of Palestine.

Obama, Kerry and Hollande are not the first to try to look heroic at the expense of the Palestinians, and the Israelis who suffer and die in a 70-year old zugzwang carted by the so-called international community which has told Arabs, and more specifically Palestinians, that they need do nothing themselves to achieve a peace settlement with Israel: the UN is there to do the work by passing endless resolutions with no mechanism for implementation.

For people far from the conflict and with no real interest in it, adopting a heroic posture at the expense of the Palestinians, or the Israelis for that matter, is no big deal.

The problem is that such heroism bought at the expense of others who pay with their lives could only prolong a conflict that might have been resolved decades ago hadn’t others, starting with the British, the UN, the Arab League, the US, Soviets etc. not intervened, often with empty promises or self-centered schemes, on one side or another.

The Obama-Kerry tandem may yet engage in other shenanigans before they ride into the sunset. Their political careers over in disaster across the board, they have nothing to lose by posing as peacemakers while settling personals scores on the side.

The Palestinians and Israelis should learn that no outsider, even with the best of intentions, which is not the case with Obama and Kerry, could solve their problems for them. It is up to the Palestinians and Israelis to decide whether they could live together and on what terms. Big speeches and meaningless resolutions might camouflage that fact for a while but won’t deprive it of its urgency.

(Source / 06.01.2017)

Syrian Coalition: Assad Regime & Allies Intent on Pursuing Military Solution

The Assad regime forces and the Iranian-backed militias committed no fewer than 251 breaches of the nationwide ceasefire in the first week since the truce went into force on December 29, 2016.

According to figures compiled by the Syrian Coalition’s media office, at least 153 people, including 13 women and 23 children, were killed as a result of these breaches. The breaches took place mainly in southern rural Aleppo and Wadi Barada valley in Rural Damascus. The office relied on local news networks and activists to compile these figures, which do not include the areas controlled by the ISIS extremist group.

Member of the Syrian Coalition’s political committee Hayan Ghabani warned of attempts by the Assad regime and its Iranian allies to sabotage the ceasefire agreement in the same way they sabotaged previous agreements. He called for the withdrawal of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard and the Hezbollah Militias from all Syrian territory and for ending support for these militias.

Turkey’s foreign minister, Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu, has called on Russia to press the Assad regime to honor its pledge of complying with the ceasefire that Moscow and Ankara jointly brokered.

During a visit to New York City on Thursday to meet the newly-appointed United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres, Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu told reporters he was worried by breaches of the ceasefire.

Çavuşoğlu also said the cease-fire violations in Syria are the main obstacle to peace negotiations to be held later this month, and he called on the UN Security Council to impose sanctions on those continuing the violence.

“There should be sanctions because otherwise you cannot control this and you cannot go to the political talks, Astana or Geneva,” Çavuşoğlu said. He added that nothing has been finalized yet about sanctions, but “maybe we need another Security Council resolution.”

Member of the Syrian Coalition Dima Moussa said that the Assad regime and Iran continue with their brutal tactics in Syria as they are trying to exploit the ceasefire to carry on with the military solutions through the mass forced displacement of the local population in key area across Syria. Moussa stressed that these tactics, which are aimed at bringing about a demographic change in Syria, constitute war crimes punishable under international law.

Member of the Syrian Coalition’s political committee Mohammed Jojah called upon the United Nations to establish clear mechanisms to monitor the ceasefire and to hold accountable those responsible for the violations “as the only way to force the Assad regime and its Iranian ally to comply with any such agreement.”

(Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Office / 06.01.2017)

Nablus rally declares state of emergency over prisoners’ cause


Dozens of Palestinian activists on Thursday rallied in the northern occupied West Bank province of Nablus in solidarity with the Palestinian detainees in Israeli jails.

The protesters lifted the Palestinian flag and prisoners’ pictures and chanted slogans supporting Palestinian detainees in Israeli prisons.

Speaking during the rally, representative of the National Committee to Support the Detainees, Imad Eshteiwi, announced a state of emergency in the face of the oppression and torture perpetrated by the Israeli occupation authorities against the Palestinian detainees in Nafha jail, among other Israeli jails.

He vowed that the Palestinians will take a firm stance against the incessant Israeli crimes against the detainees.

Eshteiwi spoke out against the racist resolutions and penalties issued by the Israeli authorities so as to dampen the prisoners’ spirits.

The activist called on the international community to take up its responsibility vis-à-vis the cause and urge Israel to cease its oppressive policies against the Palestinians.

He further pushed for appealing to the International Criminal Court (ICC) so as to impeach the Israeli occupation for its crimes against the Palestinians.

He vowed that the Palestinians will step up protest moves until the detainees’ freedom sees the day.

(Source / 06.01.2017)

U.S. House of Representatives votes against UN settlement resolution


The U.S. House of Representatives passed a resolution Thursday calling for the repeal of a U.N. Security Council resolution condemning Israeli settlements that the United States allowed to pass last month by abstaining from the vote.

The motion, passed 342 to 80 on Thursday, described last month’s resolution as “an obstacle to Israel-Palestinian peace,” and was a rebuke to President Barack Obama’s approach to the US-Israel relationship.

It noted that the Obama administration’s decision to abstain – and not veto – the Security Council resolution “undermined” Washington’s decades-long policy of shielding Israel at the UN.

“Today we put Congress on record objecting to the recent U.N. Security Council resolution that hurt our ally,” House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Ed Royce (R-Calif.) said.

Last month, the U.N. Security Council adopted a resolution which states that Israeli settlements in Palestinian territory occupied since 1967 have no legal validity, constitute a flagrant violation under international law, and are a major obstacle to a two-State solution and a comprehensive peace.

The adoption of the resolution prompted debate and political posturing based on the fact that the United States did not veto the resolution.

(Source / 06.01.2017)