December 20th, 2008

Chris Keeley


Speaking of fantastic photographers, I recently found a couple and can't remember whether I sent you the link.

This guy, Nick Brandt photographed our animal friends in various parts of Africa. I don't think I've seen anything better than what he's captured. (Sorry if that doesn't link, but I can't seem to get the hyperlink to work.)

The second is a guy from New York called Peter Beste. He went to Norway for a couple of years to photograph the black metal (music genre) phenomenon - which incidentally - is Norways biggest export.
Chris Keeley


TO: Distinguished Recipients
FM: John Whitbeck
Transmitted below is UN Special Rapporteur Richard Falk's measured and factual account of his "perverse adventure" at Tel Aviv airport, as published in the GUARDIAN.


My expulsion from Israel


When I arrived in Israel as a UN representative I knew there might be problems at the airport. And there were


Richard Falk,

Friday 19 December 2008 11.30 GMT


On December 14, I arrived at Ben Gurion airport in Tel Aviv, Israel to carry out my UN role as special rapporteur on the Palestinian territories.


I was leading a mission that had intended to visit the West Bank and Gaza to prepare a report on Israel's compliance with human rights standards and international humanitarian law. Meetings had been scheduled on an hourly basis during the six days, starting with Mahmoud Abbas, the president of the Palestinian Authority, the following day.


I knew that there might be problems at the airport. Israel had strongly opposed my appointment a few months earlier and its foreign ministry had issued a statement that it would bar my entry if I came to Israel in my capacity as a UN representative.


At the same time, I would not have made the long journey from California, where I live, had I not been reasonably optimistic about my chances of getting in. Israel was informed that I would lead the mission and given a copy of my itinerary, and issued visas to the two people assisting me: a staff security person and an assistant, both of whom work at the office of the high commissioner of human rights in Geneva.

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