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O.I.L. Media Roundup (28 December)

[Mahmoud Abbas speaks before the United Nations. Image by Peter Fedynsky.] [Mahmoud Abbas speaks before the United Nations. Image by Peter Fedynsky.]

 [This is a roundup of news articles and other materials circulating on Occupation, Intervention and Law and reflects a wide variety of opinions. It does not reflect the views of the O.I.L. Page Editors or of Jadaliyya. You may send your own recommendations for inclusion in each biweekly roundup to by Monday night of every other week.]


Why I Want Obama to Veto Abbas' UN Resolution on Palestine, Ali Abunimah
Abunimah, writing for his blog on Electronic Intifada, critiques a UN resolution setting a deadline on a Palestinian-Israeli peace agreement.

"Clock is Ticking" Till Next Round of Gaza Escalation, and War, Mondoweiss Contributor "Kate"
Mondoweiss provides a media compendium of recently escalating violence between the Israeli Defence Forces and Palestinians in Gaza and Israel.

NY Times Says a Palestinian Majority Would "Endanger Israel's Democratic Ideals," Philip Weiss
Weiss critiques a New York Times op-ed on Palestinian statehood for ignoring leftwing commentators who argue for a one-state solution and for claiming a Palestinian majority would put the "democratic ideals" of Israel in jeopardy.

EU Court Takes Hamas Off Terrorist Organizations List, BBC News
The European Union General Court has annulled a December 2001 Council of the European Union decision to treat Hamas as a terrorist organization and freeze the funds of leaders in its political wing.

Palestinians Say They Will Seek UN Vote on Resolution to End Israeli Occupation, Associated Press
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has announced plans to push for a UN Security Council vote on a resolution setting a deadline on a Israeli-Palestinian peace deal and Israeli withdrawal from Gaza.

The Misery of the Palestinian Diaspora, Nimer Sultany
Sultany discusses the obstacles which the Palestinian diaspora faces in its attempt to take part in rebuilding the national movement, as well as the way internal Palestinian politics rifts continue to affect Palestinian community and political organizing in Europe and elsewhere.


"Did the Torture Work?" is the Wrong Question, Waleed Shahid
Shahid, writing for ColorLines, questions why the debate over the United States' post-9/11 interrogation program centers over the efficacy of torture rather than its morality.

CIA Torture Report: What Now?, Asraa Mustufa
Mustufa interviews several Muslim American activists and researchers on the Senate Intelligence Committee's executive summary of their investigation into CIA use of torture during the Bush Administration.

The Guantánamo Wound that will Stay Open, Vijay Prashad
Despite promises to close the facility, an Obama Administration Guantánamo Task Force has concluded that at least fifty-nine detainees will likely never leave the prison, writes Prashad in al-Araby.

Former Guantanamo Detainee Named Global Terrorist, Carol Rosenberg
The Miami Herald reports the State Departmen has designated Ibrahim al-Rubaysh, a former Guantanamo detainee released in 2006, a "Specially Designated Global Terrorist" for associating with Al-Qaida in Yemen.

Guantanamo Lawyer: "The Torture Pervades Everything," Cora Currier
The Senate Intelligence Committee's report on CIA use of torture hurts the government's argument in Guantanamo detainee trials that their evidence against detainees does not rely on statements obtained through torture, writes Currier.

Civil Rights Group Calls for Prosecution of Torture Architects, Murtaza Hussain
Writing for The Intercept, Hussain interviews investigators with Reprieve and other human rights advocacy groups on the implications of revelations in the Senate Intelligence Committee's report on CIA use of torture on their work, including the dim prospects of the Obama Administration pursuing criminal charges against those responsible for torture.

Seven Key Points from the CIA Torture Report, Jeremy Ashkenas, Hannah Fairfield, Josh Keller, Paul Volpe
The New York Times surveys key details about the CIA's torture practices revealed in a Senate Intelligence Committee report.


Several Islamic State Leaders Have Been Killed in Iraq, US Says, Julian E. Barnes
Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Martin E. Dempsey has stated US airstrikes have killed three military leaders of Islamic State in Iraq.

The Race to Save Peter Kassig, Shiv Malik, Ali Younes, Spencer Ackerman, Mustafa Khalili
The Guardian details the effort of the US government to secure the release of American aid worker Peter Kassig, killed by ISIS on 16 November.

Do Attacks on ISIS in Syria Justify the "Unwilling or Unable" Test?, Kevin Jon Heller
Heller analyzes the notion of the right of self-defense under Article 51 of the UN Charter applying to situations where states are "unwilling or unable" to prevent non-state actors from mounting armed attacks within their borders as it applies to US air strikes against ISIS in Syria.

Imperialists for Human Rights, Bécquer Seguín
Discourse centered around "human rights" has largely been co-opted by Western powers to justify violent imperial interventions abroad, writes Seguín in Jacobin

Mount Sinjar: Islamic State Siege Broken, Say Kurds, BBC News
Kurdish militias claim to have broken an Islamic State siege of Mount Sinjar in Northern Iraq.

The Islamic State is Failing at Being a State, Liz Sly
Sly writes that the US is providing humanitarian aid to Syrians in areas under the control of ISIS.

Over 120,000 pro-Assad Fighters Killed in Syria Conflict: Monitoring Group, Reuters
According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, over 120,000 of those killed in the Syrian conflict so war are soldiers in the Syrian Arab Army, with a noticeable increase in recent months due to violent battles with ISIS.

‘Islamic State’ Versus al-Nusra: Will Baghdadi Ask for al-Talli’s Head?, Radwan Mortada
Writing in Al-Akhbar, Mortada discusses both the informal truce between Al-Nusra Front and ISIS for purposes of forging a common front against the Syrian army and Hezbollah, as well as the ongoing frictions which, he speculates, could soon erupt into renewed conflict. 


Scores of Children Among 141 Dead at Pakistan School, ABC News
ABC News reports on an a Taliban attack on a school in northwestern Pakistan.

Pakistani Military Chief Signs Death Warrants for Six "Hard-Core Terrorists," Tim Craig, Annie Gowen
Pakistani military leaders have hastened the pending executions of several detainees accused of terrorism, warrants which cannot be appealed.

How the Pakistani Taliban Became a Deadly Force, Carlotta Gall, Declan Walsh, Douglas Schorzman
The New York Times  provides a overview of the Pakistani Taliban and its history.

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