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Home arrow Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions arrow Volvo: Symbol of safety or human rights abuses?
Volvo: Symbol of safety or human rights abuses? PDF Print E-mail
Jul 03, 2007 at 02:34 PM

The automotive manufacturer Volvo writes on its website that is has the vision of being "the most desired and successful premium car brand by creating the safest and most exciting car experience," and "choosing a car is about the comfort and safety of your passengers, most especially your children." However, the Palestinian people in Israel, including the Bedouins, and the occupied territories might have another view on Volvo.

Home demolitions

According to a spokesperson from the Association of Forty, the unrecognized Bedouin Arab villages Atir and Um Hayran in the Naqab (Negev) were aggressively attacked on Monday morning, 25 June 2007 by more than 1,500 Israeli soldiers. They were accompanied by Jewish youth in orange shirts. Hussein al Rafay'a, head of the Regional Council for the Unrecognized Villages (RUCV) in the Naqab, was arrested because he tried to block the Israeli forces and machinery from approaching the villages and its inhabitants. His colleague managed to take pictures of the demolitions, showing how the big, powerful, yellow Volvo bulldozers razed the homes of the Bedouin villagers to the ground. At least twenty houses were demolished and properties were confiscated, leaving over 150 men, women and children homeless.

United Methodist Church urges for divestment

At its annual conference, 8 to 10 June this year, the New England United Methodist Church issued a report on companies which were identified as supporting the Israeli occupation of Palestine. The report is a product of a Divestment Task Force, consisting of eight clergy and lay members, which was created to implement the resolution on divestment as a peaceful way to work towards justice and peace in the Middle East, adopted at the annual conference of 2005....The automotive manufacturer Volvo writes on its website that is has the vision of being "the most desired and successful premium car brand by creating the safest and most exciting car experience," and "choosing a car is about the comfort and safety of your passengers, most especially your children." However, the Palestinian people in Israel, including the Bedouins, and the occupied territories might have another view on Volvo...

Adri Nieuwhof, The Electronic Intifada, 2 July 2007

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Israel planned for Lebanon war months in advance, PM says
  • Olmert's leaked testimony contradicts earlier remarks 
  • Criticism from inquiry may force resignation

Conal Urquhart in Tel Aviv
Friday March 9, 2007
The Guardian

Preparations for Israel's war in Lebanon last summer were drawn up at least four months before two Israeli soldiers were kidnapped by Hizbullah in July, Ehud Olmert, the prime minister, has admitted.

His submission to a commission of inquiry, leaked yesterday, contradicted the impression at the time that Israel was provoked into a battle for which it was ill-prepared. Mr Olmert told the Winograd commission, a panel of judges charged with investigating Israel's perceived defeat in the 34-day war, that he first discussed the possibility of war in January and asked to see military plans in March.

According to the Ha'aretz daily, which obtained details of Mr Olmert's testimony, the prime minister chose a plan featuring air attacks on Lebanon and a limited ground operation that would be implemented following a Hizbullah abduction. Hizbullah had made several attempts to capture Israeli soldiers on the border since Israel withdrew from southern Lebanon in 2000.

Israeli commentators believed that Mr Olmert and Amir Peretz, the defence minister, took the opportunity of the kidnapping to show they could manage a war in spite of their limited military experience. But the outcome of the war seemed to highlight their lack of experience and also deficiencies in Israel's military planning.

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