At today’s AIPAC conference…

Biden, Netanyahu set tone on Iran for Obama visit to Israel

…Joe Biden insisted on Monday that President Barack Obama was not bluffing about using force to thwart Iran’s nuclear ambitions if all else fails, even as Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called for a “credible military threat” against Tehran.

Seeking to reassure Israel and its U.S. supporters just weeks before Obama visits the Jewish state, Biden cautioned that all options, including sanctions and diplomacy, must be exhausted to ensure that the international community will be supportive if military action is deemed necessary.

But Netanyahu, speaking moments later via satellite from Jerusalem, used his address to America’s largest pro-Israel lobby to underscore Israeli impatience with U.S. strategy on Iran, a message that could foreshadow his talks with Obama.

“Words alone will not stop Iran. Sanctions alone will not stop Iran. Sanctions must be coupled with a clear and credible military threat if diplomacy and sanctions fail,” Netanyahu said to loud cheers at the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) policy conference in Washington…

After his speech, Biden met with DM Ehud Barak…!

Now, in today’s Guardian, Glennzilla had this most excellent guest posting…

Why we must resist Netanyahu and the hawks’ reckless push for war on Iran

Now, just as diplomacy is yielding results, has never been a better time to ignore the lobbying of Israel’s prime minister for war

“If Iran were to acquire nuclear weapons, this could presage catastrophic consequences, not only for my country, and not only for the Middle East, but for all mankind … the deadline for attaining this goal is getting extremely close.”

The above quote – from a speech given by Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu to a joint session of the United States Congress – is notable not only for its sense of urgency and dire threat, but also for the date on which the speech was given: 10 July 1996. That was far from the first time Netanyahu had sounded the alarm for the need to take drastic action against a purportedly imminent Iranian nuclear weapon: in a 1992 address to the Israeli Knesset, he declared, “within three to five years, we can assume that Iran will become autonomous in its ability to develop and produce a nuclear bomb” – an assertion he repeated without irony in 1995, when, in his book Fighting Terrorism, he again predicted full Iranian nuclear weapons capability within “three to five years”.

This past Sunday, Prime Minister Netanyahu declared his belief that ongoing nuclear talks between Iran and the P5+1 nations were futile and represented merely an effort by Iran to “buy time” to develop a nuclear weapon. Coming from an individual with nearly 20 years of public statements consistently citing the purported imminence of such a weapon, this is a questionable statement to say the least. But given the present atmosphere of heightened tension surrounding this issue, such comments are particularly dangerous and revealing…

MJ Rosenberg had penned another must-read today…

Hebron Is The Occupation

I wonder if all these Democratic politicians who attend the AIPAC pander-fest ever think about the occupation. Has any of them ever been to Hebron?

They should go to Hebron, a major city on the occupied West Bank — one that successive Israeli governments have said Israel will hold on to no matter what. It won’t change their political calculations. They kiss up to AIPAC to for campaign contributions but at least they will know what they are defending in the name of political expediency.

No, I don’t urge Republicans like Ted Cruz, John McCain or Lindsey Graham to go. They wouldn’t see anything wrong with it anyway. In fact, they would love it. Nor the likes of New York Democrats like Chuck Schumer or Kristen Gillibrand who never give the Middle East a thought; they are on AAP, AIPAC Automatic Pilot. I’m talking about the Dick Durbins, Carl Levins, Al Frankens, Tammy Baldwins and the Elizabeth Warrens who actually allow themselves to feel compassion and, if they were honest, rage.

I have visited Hebron a half-dozen times, once as part of an official U.S. government to monitor Palestinian elections. Much of what follows comes from a report I wrote back in 2006 but, note, the situation has only deteriorated…

And to further punctuate the point, just today… “You cannot come on this bus.”

Now, this just blew me away, today, like a tsunami…

Colonizer as Lender: Free Palestine, Occupy Wall Street, Strike Debt
By Folks in Strike Debt and Occupy Wall St.

Right in the place where empire was scheming to do its worst, a tent went up—and then another, and then a village. A new community was born there, an act of resistance as well as a nurturing space for eating and sleeping and living. People talked and prayed together. There was an explosion of hope in the midst of hopelessness. But before long the empire had enough. It sent in its army of militarized police, and the village was destroyed.

This is the story of Occupy Wall Street’s Liberty Square in the fall of 2011, yes. But it is also what happened earlier this year in the West Bank. The village of Bab al-Shams, whose name means “Gate of the Sun,” appeared early in the morning on January 11. Two days later, in the dark of night, Israeli soldiers tore it down…

Occupy Everywhere…!