Monday, August 18, 2003

I was riding the metro when I read the a New York Times article titled Talks Stall on Transfer of 2 West Bank Cities. The article notes the failure to reach an agreement over the issue of the two Palestinian cities, Qalqilya and Jericho. The real problem is misrepresentation. There is no 'handing over being' done, at all. Jericho is already under control of Palestinian security forces and a so-called "transfer" would mean that there won't be"any significance to the Israeli handover for the Palestinians, except that [the Israelis] want the Palestinians to police the traffic in the city." Another misrepresentation about the term "transfer" or "hand-over" is the fact that Israeli soldiers will retreat and remove checkpoints from inside cities (like Jericho) but besiege the city and set up move to or set up new checkpoints at the borderline of the cities. None of these points are addressed.

One of may new favorite blogs, Left I on the News has more:

Just last Friday, three days ago, news outlets were giving prominent play to this story: "Israel has agreed to hand control of four West Bank cities back to the Palestinians." By today, though, it turns out there was no such "agreement," as reported for example here: "Israeli and Palestinian commanders failed to reach an agreement late Sunday night over Israel's planned transfer to Palestinian security control of two West Bank cities." The other two cities? They've already become an afterthought, a mere "possibility": "Mr. Mofaz also held out the possibility of withdrawing later this month from two more cities, Ramallah and Tulkarm, if Israel judged that Mr. Dahlan's approach toward terrorism and the wanted men was effective."
The media jumped the gun, leaving the impression of another 'concession' from the Israeli side. Untrue, of course.

From the same blog, Eli notes that MSNBC, CNN and the New York Times fail to mention by whom Mazen Dana was shot and beaten up. As linked to earlier, Dana was--and note this--shot three times with live ammunition, about seventy to eighty times with rubber bullets and was beaten about one hundred time by soldiers. Two times his hands were broken.

Nael al-Shyoukhi, Dana's longtime partner comments on Dana's killing in the Reuters article.
They saw us and they knew about our identities and our mission," Shyoukhi said. The incident happened in the afternoon in daylight. The soldier agreed to their request to film an overview of the prison from a bridge nearby. "After we filmed we went into the car and prepared to go when a convoy led by a tank arrived and Mazen stepped out of the car to film. I followed him and Mazen walked three to four meters (yards). We were noted and seen clearly," Shyoukhi said. "A soldier on the tank shot at us. I lay on the ground. I heard Mazen and I saw him scream and touching his chest. "I cried at the soldier, telling him you killed a journalist. They shouted at me and asked me to step back and I said 'I will step back, but please help, please help and stop the bleed'. "They tried to help him but Mazen bled heavily. Mazen took a last breath and died before my eyes."


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