In the midst of a political stalemate in Israel, the government is continuing with its annexation of the West Bank, a move recently endorsed by the U.S. Israel also continues its murderous campaign against Gaza and air strikes against Syria.After two elections, in April and September, Israeli politicians are still deadlocked. Likud, the party of right-winger Benjamin Netanyahu, prime minister for the last 10 years, has basically tied twice with the Blue and White party of Benny Gantz, a more centrist alliance put together to try to defeat Netanyahu. As a result, neither has been able to form a government.The Joint List, a political coalition uniting a number of Palestinian parties, is the third largest block in the Knesset, Israel’s parliament. Netanyahu’s campaign terrorist-baited the Joint List and tried to link it to the Blue and White.U.S. support for Israel’s colonizationSecretary of State Mike Pompeo announced Nov. 18 that the United States does not consider Israeli settlements built on occupied Palestinian land to be illegal.This statement reverses 40 years of U.S. policy, but didn’t come out of the blue. David M. Friedman, the U.S. ambassador to Israel, made it clear that he supported Israel’s so-called right to annex the occupied West Bank at his nomination hearing in 2016. (New York Times, Dec. 15, 2016)The latest gift by U.S. President Donald Trump to his ally Netanyahu has no obvious rationale, but certainly bolstered Netanyahu’s political position within Israel.In response, Hanan Ashrawi, a member of the Palestine Liberation Organization’s Executive Committee and an elected member of the Palestinian Legislative Council, said: “Pompeo’s reckless announcement threatens to normalize and encourage Israeli war crimes and expansionism.” (Washington Post, Nov. 20)She went on to say: “The issue of settlements is not some abstract or theoretical legal argument. Israel’s illegal settlement regime has had dire consequences on the lives and livelihoods of millions of Palestinians.”She added: “Today, roughly 700,000 Israeli settlers live illegally on occupied Palestinian land in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, in more than 200 settlements. [Israeli] settlements are strategically located to isolate Palestinian cities, towns and villages, sever East Jerusalem from the rest of the West Bank, and take control of vital natural resources, including water.”Israel’s campaign against GazaIsrael claimed Nov. 12 that it had assassinated Bahaa Abu Al-Ata, the top commander of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad, and his spouse Asma Abu Al-Ata, at their home in Gaza. Israel boasted that this assassination was “surgical,” but one of its final strikes also destroyed the home of another family, killing eight, including five children. Palestinian medical officials reported 34 casualties. (Washington Post, Nov. 16)In response, beginning Nov. 13, Islamic Jihad sent a barrage of hundreds of rockets into southern Israel. After a couple of days, Israel attacked some Hamas facilities, claiming rockets were coming from there.Israel has imposed a state of siege on Gaza for the past 12 years. Israel has limited or completely cut off food, water, electricity and medical supplies, leaving the Palestinian people there in hunger, thirst and danger.Netanyahu’s indictmentOn Nov. 21, Avichaï Mandelblit, Israel’s attorney general, released a 63-page indictment of Netanyahu, who had appointed him 4 years earlier. Netanyahu was charged with bribery, fraud and breach of trust. These charges are similar to charges now being developed in the impeachment investigation against his ally Trump.Netanyahu’s response to the indictment was aggressive. He charged it was a “witch hunt,” “an attempted coup,” and is refusing to step down. He is not legally obliged to do so, but significantly he had called for a previous prime minister, Ehud Olmert, to step down after a similar indictment.It is not clear how this latest development will affect the situation in Israel and Palestine. The Blue and White head, Benny Ganz, implied he could no longer negotiate with Likud while it was headed by Netanyahu. Political splits in the Israeli public are growing sharper. European media called for Netanyahu to step down.The head of Hamas, Ismail Haniyeh, said the developments were a sign “of more steadfastness” for the Palestinians and that this meant more “resistance, both popular and armed.” (AP, Nov. 23)FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thisFacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare this
Lesley Manville has had an astonishing few years of late, moving from Ibsen at the National (Pillars of the Community opposite Damian Lewis) to John Guare at the Old Vic (Six Degrees of Separation, playing Stockard Channing’s original role) and now back to Ibsen with his classic drama, Ghosts in Richard Eyre’s intense production at the Trafalgar. Equally well known from her work in film, most notably with the writer-director Mike Leigh, the warmly engaging actress chatted with Broadway.com about keeping the classics alive, not going Hollywood and her fervent wish to bring this most recent project to New York. There is talk of Ghosts coming to New York. Would you be keen for that to happen? No question about it, I would love to. I am not yet ready to walk away from this play. You do seem to get an awful lot of roles where you are the mother to a dying child. Oh God, I know! When I was doing [Mike Leigh’s play] Grief at the National Theatre, my onstage daughter was played by the real-life daughter of my best friend, Janine Duvitski, whom I watched being born, so it was very strange having her die there with me at each performance. But these have all been magnificent, complex roles so I can hardly complain. Isn’t it amazing how how modern the play feels, even though it is being performed in period and was written in Scandinavia in 1881? Yes, what Richard has done so subtly is help the audience to absolutely register that the play is talking about them even though, as you say, we have period sets and costumes and everything. There are nights when I say as Mrs. Alving that my whole married life has been a vile sham, and I can sense a gasp from the house and I know that some poor person is experiencing or has experienced a version of what I just said. All throughout, you can hear the audience tingling at certain lines that in Richard’s adaptation bring the material home. You came to New York with Caryl Churchill’s now-classic play Top Girls some 30 years ago, and were married for a while to Gary Oldman, who became a major Hollywood star. Did you ever feel the need to base yourself in the States or make a bid for that kind of stardom? Not really, but don’t forget that when I was in my 20s, nobody really did that. I know it kind of happened to Gary, but that was sort of an exception and that came about because he’d made Sid and Nancy and Prick Up Your Ears. Then he suddenly he got offered this film [in 1989] called Chattahoochee, which led to work in the States. It was very unusual at that time. Certainly actors in my circle didn’t have American agents and weren’t auditioning for pilot seasons—it just didn’t happen. I’m sort of glad it didn’t, really, because honestly I do think that the true test of a decent actress is how good they can be on stage. How would you describe Mrs. Alving’s dilemma in the play? She has lived a lie her entire life—and kept the reality of her brutal marriage to her late husband quiet. She’s kept it a secret from her son, Oswald, who is on his way back to be with her from Paris, and even from the man she really loves who was the Pastor. The play can be said to take place at the point at which Mrs. Alving finds the courage to expose all of this because she has achieved a kind of liberation—until it then all takes a really bad turn. Your career flies in the face of the often-cited assertion that parts for women dry up as they get older whereas yours seem only to get better. I know, and I feel a bit guilty about that, but I think it is true that it gets harder. At the same time, I think there’s been a quiet change happening—a growing realization that there is an audience that wants to watch plays and television and films that deal with older women. So I do appreciate that the situation is difficult once you get to a certain age, but that I equally seem to be defying that! Have you been getting audience members who think are coming to the now-closed London and Broadway musical Ghost? [Laughs.] I don’t think so, but you never know! You’ve had an amazing few years, but your performance as Mrs. Alving in Ghosts seems special even by those high standards. That’s very kind of you to say, and, you know, I do think Mrs. Alving feels like a kind of pinnacle—the culmination of a good few years of work that I’ve done in the theater and on film as well. It feels like the top of the mountain both in terms of the role and the play itself. View Comments Commercial productions of Ibsen are pretty rare, especially ones that are selling out as yours is. That’s very true, and I really do think we’ve broken a mold with this production, which in itself wouldn’t have been possible without doing it first at the Almeida, where the producer Sonia Friedman came to see us and now here we are. What Richard [Eyre, the play’s director and adaptor] has done is draw together a really good bunch of actors who were able to create the piece absolutely organically from the script that he had written and because of the talent in the rehearsal room, it just came very naturally to life. Is part of your career resurgence due to the fact that your son with Gary is now grown? Christ, yes! I was a single mother so there was a lot of stuff that I couldn’t do that—now that Alfie is 25—I obviously can do, so there’s a certain liberation to that. I remember particularly being asked to play Kate in The Taming of the Shrew for the Royal Shakespeare Company in Stratford followed by a 17-week tour, and I couldn’t do it; I had a six-year-old son.
QPR manager Mark Hughes has reiterated his reluctance to allow any of his 25-man squad out on loan – even if their first-team chances look remote.Hughes’ stance meant the likes of Clint Hill – nudged down the pecking order by the signing of Taye Taiwo – seemed destined for a frustrating spell without first-team football.But Hill has since been recalled to the side, producing solid displays at left-back and as a central defender.AdChoices广告And Hughes said: “We’ve been in a situation where if maybe we haven’t performed defensively as we wanted to we need to look at our options.“Clint’s been very much in my mind, he’s in the 25, and he’s player I knew I could call upon if I needed to.“So I’m very reluctant to send people out on loan once they’re in the 25. My priority really is to get the others out on loan.”Follow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebook
Published on February 15, 2012 at 12:00 pm Contact Stephen: [email protected] | @Stephen_Bailey1 Comments Facebook Twitter Google+ Duke and North Carolina have dominated the Atlantic Coast Conference ever since its creation in 1953.In 46 of 58 seasons in the ACC’s existence, and each of the past eight, the Blue Devils or Tar Heels have finished the season with at least a share of the regular-season crown.Each entering the stretch run of their respective conference schedules at the top of the ACC standings, the two perennial powerhouses are not alone. Florida State is right there with them.‘Well, all three teams are extremely gifted,’ Miami (Fla.) head coach Jim Larranaga said Monday on the ACC coaches’ teleconference. ‘All three teams have different ways of hurting you. Carolina has got the biggest team. And size in basketball can really be a factor if the size has athletic ability and skill; and Carolina has both.‘So they are a very, very talented team, and so is Florida State and so is Duke.’AdvertisementThis is placeholder textThe 20th-ranked Seminoles made it clear from the start of the season this year’s ACC competition would be a race between the three teams. FSU won seven straight conference matchups after falling to Clemson on Jan. 7. Though no player averages more than 14 points per game, eight Florida State players record at least seven points per contest.The Seminoles are tied with two of the most explosive teams in the country and have had the upper hand against the two historical powerhouses. Florida State’s winning streak included a 90-57 rout of No. 8 UNC and a buzzer-beating 76-73 victory over No. 5 Duke on Jan. 21.The Blue Devils slid a bit after that game, allowing 76 points to an inexperienced St. John’s squad and falling in overtime to Miami.But Duke came out of that slump to hand North Carolina its second conference loss Feb. 8, courtesy of a 10-point comeback in the final two minutes. It was capped off by an Austin Rivers’ 3-pointer from the right wing as time expired at the Dean E. Smith Center.The improved play of junior guard Seth Curry — who is averaging 17 points on 48 percent shooting over the Blue Devils’ last two games — factored into the turnaround, head coach Mike Krzyzewski said.‘He’s playing very well,’ Krzyzewski said Monday on the ACC coaches’ teleconference. ‘The other thing with Seth, we’ve used him in multiple roles. Sometimes when you switch him like that, there’s a little bit that can hurt a kid. Again, what the team needs sometimes puts that young man in a position where he’s not as comfortable.‘So we’ve had a little bit more stability with the perimeter and offense really playing outstanding basketball. Tyler (Thornton) has given us good leadership. So the people around him have been stable and that helps him.’Duke has four players averaging double digits in scoring. Led by freshman Rivers, who averages 15 points per game and 41 percent from deep, the Blue Devils have potent scorers at each position.Though he wishes the production would be more consistent on a game-by-game basis, Krzyzewski is pleased with his team’s performance thus far in the season.‘Really, overall, I think these kids have done an unbelievable job, coming from the base that they had,’ Krzyzewski said. ‘None of them were star players for us last year.’For the Tar Heels and Blue Devils, who close out their seasons with a March 3 rematch, there would be no better momentum-builder than a win over their respective arch-nemesis.After UNC senior forward Tyler Zeller almost single-handedly fumbled the game away in the closing minute of the teams’ first game this season, the 7-foot, 250-pound big man will be relied on to dominate the paint.Larranaga said the Tar Heels are able to counterbalance a poor shooting performance with strength inside.‘I think Carolina is so big and they can miss shots and that can still be good offense for them,’ Larranaga said. ‘Just like the other day, they can crash the offensive boards and turn a miss into a make in a split second.’Luckily for the Seminoles, the Tar Heels’ schedule does not give them a chance to avenge their blowout loss to FSU earlier this season.But FSU will likely have to hand the Blue Devils another loss Feb. 23 if it wants to become the first team other than Duke or UNC since Wake Forest in 2003 to earn the sole distinction of ACC regular-season champion.Matchups against North Carolina State and Miami also provide challenges at the tail end of the Seminoles’ conference slate.But before those highly anticipated contests, and the looming conference tournament, Florida State must avoid falling in to what could be a trap game against Virginia Tech on Thursday.The Hokies, which FSU beat 63-59 earlier this year, are 14-11 overall and are led by junior guard Erick Green, who paces VT with 15.5 points per game.‘Obviously, everybody has tremendous respect for Green,’ FSU head coach Leonard Hamilton said Monday on the ACC coaches’ teleconference. ‘Like most teams they have guys who are stepping in and out of those led roles from game to game.‘They have some talented players, and you never really know who’s going to have a good night from night to night. That’s why you have to be prepared to go out and defend them, and everybody has to be on the defensive focus.’[email protected]