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PARIS, THE NEW NORMAL? — Diana Johnstone files an in-depth report from Paris on the political reaction to the Charlie Hebdo shootings; The Treachery of the Black Political Class: Margaret Kimberley charts the rise and fall of the Congressional Black Caucus; The New Great Game: Pepe Escobar assays the game-changing new alliance between Russia and Turkey; Will the Frackers Go Bust? Joshua Frank reports on how the collapse of global oil prices might spell the end of the fracking frenzy in the Bakken Shale; The Future of the Giraffe: Ecologist Monica Bond reports from Tanzania on the frantic efforts to save one of the world’s most iconic species. Plus: Jeffrey St. Clair on Satire in the Service of Power; Chris Floyd on the Age of Terrorism and Absurdity; Mike Whitney on the Drop Dead Fed; John Wight on the rampant racism of Clint Eastwood’s “American Sniper;” John Walsh on Hillary Clinton and Lee Ballinger on the Gift of Anger.
Israel Tightens Its Screws of Oppression

More Apartheid

by CESAR AGUEL

Where?

Well . . . Take a guess.

Choose two places and one does not count.

We are of course referring to the new measures taken by the Israeli Transport Ministry, for the daily transfer, back and forth, of Palestinians residing in the Occupied Territories to Israel, and back. “Cheap labor”, of course.

Those Palestinians that earn their living performing the most humble tasks in Israel proper and who have been issued work permits to do work DURING THE DAY only and then come back to their homes in the Occupied Territories, now have, according to the Transport Ministry an improved service.

A new bus line, line 210, is the one that is supposed to provide the “improved” service.

The reality, however, is another.

This bus line is destined to be exclusively for Palestinians. The information about its existence has been disseminated only in Arabic and in the Occupied Territories.

The characteristics of this service, subtly presented as an improved service, cannot hide the odious face of an abhorrent discrimination.

In fact, it brings to memory the worst of the Jim Crow laws in the U.S. or the worse of the Apartheid system in South Africa.

The state of Israel continues tightening the screws of oppression in the Occupied Territories.

Walls of separation, illegal settlements, systematic thievery of land and denial of construction permits are only some of the tactics that Israelis use to remind Palestinians who is “Lord” and who is in bondage.

And all this happens under the indifferent watch of the international community. When an action against the Palestinians by the Israelis is extremely degrading, they denounce it but no action is taken. And the economic aid to Israel from the U.S. and Europe continues flowing.

Those that are in position to take action against the abuses suffered by the Palestinians, one day will suffer the censure from others for their lack of initiative.

Cesar Aguel is a columnist for the Colombian newspaper La Tarde.