In a particularly nasty move, the company that supplies water to the Occupied West Bank, Mekorot, has cut supplies to the Palestinians. It is ironic that the state owned company would restrict the Palestinians living in the Occupied West Bank yet not cut the flow to the illegal Israeli settlers there.
The Palestinians in cities obtain their water from the Mountain Aquifer which runs under both countries. Some water surfaces as springs or dug wells, but the majority is used by Israel. It is an important source of drinking and irrigation water. Israeli citizens depend on the Mountain Aquifer for about 50% of their drinking water and about 40% of the irrigation water also comes from this aquifer. The River Jordan is another very important water source. The Palestinians are left with about 20% of the Mountain Aquifer flow.
For a relatively few years Israel had an abundance of water, augmented by desalination plants, but it is beginning to experience a shortfall in its needs. Palestinians complain that when water is rationed, they are always hit the hardest. Water usage varies greatly depending on which side of the fence you dwell on. Per capita consumption in Israel is about 350 litres per day, in the Occupied West Bank about 60 litres per day.
According to the UN, 7.5 litres per capita per day is the minimum requirement for most people under most conditions but in some areas of Palestine - where temperatures exceed 35 degrees celsius - the minimum requirement is much higher. Al Jazeera
To add to the water problems in the area, the Mountain Aquifer is vulnerable to surface contamination. Both Israeli and Palestinians contribute pollution in the form of solid waste and sewage. More water is being drawn out than is being replenished.
This is the month of Ramadan which is observed by those of the Muslim Faith. It continues until July 5th. During Ramadan followers are required to refrain from eating and drinking, as well as refrain from personal indulgences during daylight hours instead focussing on their faith and their duty to one another. When daylight fades, they may eat and drink. To deny people in their own land access to adequate water especially during Ramadan, seems very mean spirited.
Eco Peace Middle East
Robert Mugabe is the president of Zimbabwe, the former Southern Rhodesia. He has been president of the country since it achieved independence from Britain. He has ruled the country since 1980. His rule has been marked with vote rigging, mass emigration, human rights abuses and economic decline.
Shortly after achieving independence, Mugabe initiated land seizures from the predominately white farmers. Land was seized or acquired at bargain prices. Under the guise of land reform, many of the farms were turned over to Mugabe cronies. Some land was given to the landless, but lacking the experience and capital, many agricultural enterprises failed. The country moved from a food exporting country to one that imported food.
The country’s staple food crop has failed this year. The super El Nino has caused a drought which has resulted in a 75% failure of the maize crop. Many are poorly fed.
This has not discouraged the ruling elite from throwing a lavish birthday party for the president. Saturday February 27 marked his 92nd birthday celebrations. Mugabe turned 92 in office. A million dollar party was held at the site of Great Zimbabwe. Approximately 50 000 guests were feted. A photo published in The Guardian shows Mugabe and his wife, both very well fed eating cake during the celebration.
The country has declared a state of emergency due to the crop failures. The president has asked the international community to contribute at least USD$1.6 billion to help feed the starving. He has announced that he will only accept aid if it is “no strings attached”. That is in reference to many countries’ objections to his human rights record.
If Mugabe is a normal human, he will not live forever. No doubt many are speculating about who will succeed him. It is unlikely that it will be a smooth transition to a real democracy. Speculation abounds that Mugabe is pushing for his wife, Grace, to succeed as head of state. He elevated her to the head of the Zanu PF women’s wing in 2015. Others are not keen on her.
The pictures of the head of state and his wife eating cake while millions are teetering on starvation brings to mind the famous words of Marie Antoinette.
News Dze Zimbabwe
The building of massive settlements for Jewish people while building massive walls to keep Palestinians from their land has been condemned by the UN.
The nastiness is not confined to the terrorists living in the occupied territories. In September, Prime Minister Netanyahu made it clear to the world that Israel will not allow people fleeing the Syrian civil war. He announced the building of another massive barrier wall construction to keep the people out. He is quoted below:
"We will not allow Israel to be flooded with illegal migrants and terrorists." Common Dreams
It would behoove those in power in Israel to look to the growing number of fascists within their ranks and extirpate them.
Guided and instigated by far-right ideologues such as Benzion Gopstein and Baruch Marzel, the crowds chanted their usual “Death to Arabs,” “A Jew has a soul, an Arab is a son of a whore,” and other similar malicious slogans. Mondo Weiss
Military personnel were sent to camps in Turkey, Lebanon and Jordan to interview prospective immigrants. They were assisted by UN personnel and numerous checks of identity and background were conducted before the refugees were given the green light to emigrate to Canada.
Canada Border Services Agency(CBSA) has worked closely with Pearson Airport officials to bring online a vacant terminal separate from the commercial part of the complex to enhance the ability to further screen new arrivals.
"With our many partners, we have worked to make new arrivals as comfortable as possible, while protecting the integrity of the arrival process," said the CBSA's Regional Director General Goran Vragovic in a news release.
As well as finalizing the paperwork, the new arrivals will be given warm clothing appropriate for their destination.
It may come as a surprise to many that many of the people who live in the camps do not wish to emigrate. Their wish is to return to their own country when peace is achieved.
Those that arrived on Thursday were personally greeted by PM Justin Trudeau who was filmed helping new residents with warm clothes.
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