For just a moment yesterday, one might have thought that the demonstrations worked, or that the hoax newspaper announcing the end of segregation on Shuhada St was not a hoax after all. For a moment, one might have mistakenly assumed that Palestinians are actually walking that main road in Hebron’s city center, with its closed shops and racist graffiti sprayed on them, and the local population locked in their homes and tormented by settlers. But this too was a hoax. A Purim hoax. Once again settlers celebrated Purim by marching on the Jewish-only street merrily disguised as Palestinians. Segregation was kept: fake Arabs – in, real ones – out.
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Haggai Matar is an Israeli journalist and political activist. After writing for the short-lived Palestine Times, for Ha’ir Tel Aviv of the Ha’aretz group and for Zman Tel Aviv, the local supplement of Ma’ariv (where he became chairman of the journalists’ union chapter), he is now working as a freelance journalist. He was awarded the 2012 Anna Lindh Mediterranean Journalist Award for his +972 series on the separation wall.
In 2002, Matar was part of the Shministim (Seniors) Letter to then Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, and was imprisoned for two years for his refusal to enlist in the Israeli army. Since his release, he has been active in various groups against the occupation, as well as in several class-based struggles within Israeli society.
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