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  • From Gaza to Salameh: A Palestinian refugee's journey home

    A Palestinian refugee from Gaza journey's to his family's hometown in present-day Tel Aviv. Standing on what used to be the village cemetery, he feels the ghosts of the past as he must reckon with the currently reality. By Eitan Bronstein Aparicio (translated by Charles Kamen) On International Human Rights Day, he took advantage of his basic rights and returned to Salameh, which today is known as Kfar Shalem. It is the first time he has visited the place where his parents were born. His father was born in 1936 and was 12 when he, along with the rest of the…

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  • 'Truth commission' uncovers the history of Bedouin dispossession

    An informal 'Public Truth Commission' set out to find exactly what happened to the Negev Bedouin between 1948 and 1960. While Bedouin witnesses told stories of massacres, rape and expulsions, former Israeli soldiers said they were just following orders.  By Tom Pessah I identify as straight, so I cannot claim to know how it feels to be in the closet. But I do have friends who identify as LGBTQ, and they have taught me a little about what it is like: to constantly evade the subject is exhausting. If you demand that people hide such central parts of their identities,…

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  • The day that Mandela Square graces Jerusalem

    Like Mandela, we in Israel have fought for our liberation from colonialism. But the world Mandela inspires is far from accepting Israel's occupation of Palestine. By Ilan Baruch On December 5th, South Africa and the world commemorated the passing away of Neslon Mandela, one of the most illustrious men in the history of modern times. In the duration of my tenure as Ambassador of Israel to South Africa, Mandela was no longer playing a role in the political dynamics of the country, and ambassadorial courtesy visits to his office were nearly impossible. Thanks, however, to the extraordinary help of a prominent…

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  • U.S. torture report shows the danger of Israel's legal loopholes

    In American discourse, torture is a dark stain on the country's recent history. In Israel, there is no law against torture and the justification of its use is still mainstream. By Nadeem Shehadeh and Amjad Iraqi The United States Senate this week released its long-awaited report on the CIA’s use of torture during the so-called “War on Terror.” A significant revelation in the report was that the CIA relied upon an Israeli High Court decision on torture and other Israeli policies as legal justifications for its own torture practices. These include the vague concepts of “necessity” and “ticking bombs,” and…

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  • Disengagement? Israel's interests in Gaza are stronger than ever

    There is something ironic and self-contradictory about the Israeli Right's plans for managing the conflict instead of solving it: Israel doesn't have a real interest in truly disconnecting from Gaza. And Gaza isn't going anywhere. By Itamar Sha’altiel Over the past several years Yoaz Hendel has been been positioning himself as a natural candidate to be Israel's prime minister. With a column in Yedioth Ahronoth, his own radio show and an opinion on everything, Hendel is everywhere. Among other things, he also has an opinion on Gaza. It's worth taking a look at: According to Hendel, Israel has only two option:…

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  • How a Galilee Palestinian beat the odds to become an Arab Idol finalist

    On his way to the finale of one of the most important shows in the Arab world, Haitham Khalailah had to deal with the Shin Bet, restrictions on the movement of Palestinian citizens and the fraught connection between Palestinians in Israel and the rest of the Middle East. Will he be the second Palestinian in a row to be crowned winner? By Yael Marom and Henriette Chacar Haitham Khalailah, a 24-year-old Palestinian singer from Majd al-Krum, competed Friday night in the finale of Arab Idol - the most popular singing competition in the entire Arab world. Hundreds of millions of viewers…

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  • The first step toward Jewish-Arab cooperation is a knock at the door

    Could the upcoming elections bridge the gap between Israeli Jews and Arabs? Lebanese human rights lawyer Chibli Mallat says that contrary to popular belief, there are more possibilities for cooperation than one might think. By Chibli Mallat The death of Palestinian Authority Settlement Minister Ziad Abu Ein serves as another reminder of the senseless deadlock in Israel-Palestine. We all mourn the loss of an advocate of nonviolence who joined the universal call to breathe. Something must give. History might predict another bout of violence, but the Israeli elections on March 17 might create a different, more positive opportunity. This is…

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  • Majority of Israeli Jews support bus segregation, survey finds

    Surveys by Israeli Democracy Index and Tel Aviv University find that most Israeli Jews prefer separate buses for Jews and Palestinians in the West Bank; one-quarter of Arab respondents support the torching of Jerusalem's only mixed Jewish-Arab school.  As Israel heads into election cycle, a shower of political punditry will yet again distract everyone from the issues that affect people’s lives. That is the main reason, in my opinion, why the prime minister wanted elections. He has exhausted all other means of doing nothing. Yet it’s worth remembering the issues. The following is a selection of public opinion data from…

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  • Palestinian non-violent activists: Army violence won't stop our resistance

    The Palestinian minister who died after a non-violent protest on Wednesday was a symbol the Palestinian Authority’s support for non-violent popular struggle. Non-violent Palestinian leaders from across the West Bank talk about how Israel responds violently toward their activities. By Yael Marom A general strike in Ramallah, three days of mourning in the Palestinian Authority and calls for increased protests and non-violent resistance to the occupation. Those were only some of the responses to the death of Palestinian Minister Ziad Abu Ein, who died during a protest marking International Human Rights Day Wednesday. Abu Ein, who was the Palestinian Authority…

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  • The Knesset v. Zoabi: Israeli Arab MK's politics put on trial

    The High Court spent most of Tuesday's hearing questioning Zoabi’s politics rather than deliberating whether the Knesset had the right to suspend her in the first place. Israel's High Court of Justice held a discussion Tuesday morning over Knesset member Haneen Zoabi's (Balad) petition to overrule a decision to suspend her from parliamentary debates for six months. The decision was put into effect by the Knesset Ethics Committee on July 29 and is due to expire at the end of January 2015. Tuesday's session ended without a decision, but justices said one would be made in the coming days. The suspension…

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