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Posts Tagged ‘ Israel ’

Cutbacks Crippling Palestinian Health Service

photoFormer Irish News Review reporter Keith Falkiner has recently returned from a trip to Palestine. During his trip Keith met with some journalists in Gaza who were keen to tell their stories to an English speaking audience. Here’s a story by Keith and Gaza based reporter Ahmed Dalloul on the health service crisis in the region.  

WE all grumble about the state of the health service in Ireland.

But spare a thought for the 1.8 million people crammed into the Gaza Strip, where hospitals have to deal with chronic power outages, a shortage of medication and where even the staff are rarely assured of getting paid for their crucial, life-saving work.

Gaza-based journalist Ahmed Dalloul reports for Irish News Review on the Palestinian enclave’s two main hospitals, Beit Hanoun and Al-Shifa – where both are on the verge of complete breakdown.

The two hospitals were the target of attack during Israel’s recent 50-day military onslaught on Gaza ,but as Ahmed reports, there are deeper, underlying issues that are affecting the future operation of both hospitals. Continue reading

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The War At Home – Ireland’s Relationship With Israel

 

Ireland Abstained from a UN vote on Gaza (image: thejournal.ie)

Ireland Abstained from a UN vote on Gaza (image: thejournal.ie)

Ireland’s decision to abstain from a vote into the investigation of Israeli war crimes in Gaza yesterday at the United Nations Human Rights Council has caused uproar amongst the Irish people.

The news was met with utter disgust by a large percentage of Irish citizens, who feel misrepresented by members of our government. Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams also showed his disdain by accusing the government of “political cowardice”, while Fianna Fáil Senator Averil Power announced she is “shocked and disgusted with the Irish government’s decision not to support an international inquiry into Israel’s actions in Gaza.” Continue reading

The Globalisation Of The NBA

nba

Brooklyn Nets kicked off the first global game of 2014 with a resounding 127-110 win over the Atlanta Hawks at London’s 02 Arena last Thursday.

Over the past 35 years the NBA have played 147 games globally, visiting 20 different countries including China, Germany, Italy and Russia amongst others.

Yet the globalisation of the NBA has extended far beyond bringing the game cross continent.  Continue reading

The Most Laid Back School in The World

sudbury

You’re about to meet the most laid back school in the United States. Meet Sudbury Valley School – the school that allows you to do anything you want.

The school itself was founded in 1968 in Framingham, Massachusetts. The school is firmly based on the Sudbury model utilised throughout the United States, Denmark, Israel, Japan, Netherlands, Belgium and Germany.

The model firmly runs of the system off;
– Educational Freedom
– Democratic Governance
– Personal Responsibility

Continue reading

A Year in Brief: Part One

muff

What a year it’s been; Hitler birthday cakes, mutant rats, and Bob Geldof off to space! To celebrate the end of another 365 days here are some of NIB’s favourite stories of the year.

Kicking off the year in festive spirit a man in Derry was fined after stealing a CCTV camera which “became his friend”. Police found Peter Morrison, 24, drunk and “petting” the camera as they arrived to arrest him. CCTV pets are for life not just for Christmas. Continue reading

Obama’s Dilemma And World Hesitation

OBAMA

Over a year ago I contributed a piece to this website which mentioned the use of torture by Syrian government forces in an organised fashion. It should be no surprise to us that the Assad regime has gone ahead and used gas on its own people. The Assad regime is without a doubt an evil regime hell-bent on maintaining power in any way possible. It is disheartening and tragic that this can continue in the twenty first century. We are essentially sitting watching another Rwanda happen, albeit over a longer period of time.

Living in the large shadow of the Gulf War II it is to be expected that western powers are going to be hesitant to intervene in another Middle East conflict. Assad’s regime is reportedly preparing for a U.S. strike, with reports coming through of troops, ordinance and sensitive documents being moved to civilian buildings and discreet locations. Obama’s decision to delay any possible action seems to be allowing time for Assad to prepare for this possibility. However the decision is hugely complex and Obama will have a number of motivations for his decision.

Following on Britain’s example, Obama is seeking Congressional approval for his action. One can easily see the allure of having a strong consensus built behind military action, given the disaster that was Iraq. Domestic factors may be present in the president’s mind. Intervening without Congressional approval (as in Libya) would leave Obama and the Democrats open to criticism from Rand Paul et al, hailing the UK as an example of how a democracy should decide on entering into a war. This would be an easy card to play to an American public which may balk at the prospect of another drawn out war. They have seen enough American boys come home in body bags.

Syria is also stocked full of new Russian anti-aircraft technology, and the supply chain will not halt any time soon. The UN is also unlikely to reach a strong consensus due to Russia and China’s position on the Security Council. This is an issue which needs to be changed as the current setup of the security council prevents it functioning to its full and proper potential.

There are numerous other complications so boggling that nobody can say with any certainty what will happen. The Islamic fundamentalist elements among the Syrian rebels are a mysterious threat. During this week, Iran threatened retaliation against Israel if Syria were struck. The war has already spilled over into Lebanon. Egypt, once reliable as a bastion of stability, is now more chaotic than any other point in recent years. One cannot blame America for being apprehensive about beginning to bomb a region that could inflame the whole region.

The great tragedy of these complications is that the carnage continues. This was the second gas attack by Syrian government forces, twice crossing Obama’s ‘Red Line’. The UK’s rash decision to avoid war, and America’s hesitation will send out the wrong message worldwide. This message is clear when we hear reports of the Syrian government taunting America’s aversion to war and loss of superpower status. To prevent mass war crimes against whole peoples in the future, perpetrators must understand they will be brought to justice. John Kerry has a reputation as a dull operator, but he has been an ardent supporter of intervention. He is one of a few prominent politicians with the conviction to call the Syrian government for what it is.

The firm line taken by France is hardly surprising given their willingness to become involved in former colonies like Chad and Mali.

Obama had missed the opportunity to be decisive and take a firm line on Syria. The UK has essentially forfeited its chance to help. The memories of Iraq, and the continuing deadlock of the U.N. Security Council means we are facing into more misery and more dead civilians with no end in sight.

News in Brief-Family Feud “A Bit Of Craic”

fighting-kidsDublin’s new bridge, crossing the Liffey at Marlborough Street and connecting Luas lines on each side of the river, is looking for a name. A list of 85 possibilities were suggested by the general public which has been short listed by Dublin Council to 17. Word of advice to Dublin City Council: don’t ask the public to decide things like this. They will take the piss. Some suggestions in a comments thread on The Times website included: Bosco Bridge; Daniel Day Luas Bridge (nice); Da Plain People O’Ireland Bridge; Jedward Bridge; and NIB favourite, the Feckin’ Bridge.

This year’s Lisdoonvarna Matchmaking Festival is going gay. ’The Outing’ aims to offer gay and lesbian participants a matchmaking service to rival it’s straight counterpart with drag shows and ceilìs combined. Music, dancing and matchmaking will be overseen by Panti, ’Drag High-Queen of Ireland’ (who knew we were a monarchy?), at a price of €199 per person, sharing. Obviously they’re confident about meeting Mr or Mrs Right in Clare. Continue reading

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