The American network CBS - via its flagship news magazine show, "60 Minutes" - gave the tiny peninsula Kingdom of Qatar a free ride in its report earlier this year exploring the small gulf nation. Correspondent Bob Simon, dubbed by the network itself as "the most honored journalist in international reporting," delivered a public relations coup to the Emir and his government (i.e. family) by failing to properly investigate life in the country of less than two million people (the majority of whom are foreign laborers). Simon was partially right. Yes, for many - namely, the wealthy portion of the…Read More... | 11 Comments
Ambassador Michael Oren insists that in all the Middle East, Christians have it the best in Israel, but a history of dispossession paints a more complex picture. The writer asserts Palestinian Christians are emigrating due to Israel's discriminatory policies, and calls attention to upcoming resolutions by churches in the United States to divest from Israeli companies that profit from the occupation. By Philip Farah | Originally published in the Huffington Post on May 1, 2012 In a recent op-ed in the Wall Street Journal, Israeli Ambassador Michael Oren claimed that Christians in Israel are better off than their brethren anywhere else in…Read More... | 16 Comments
Palestinian Christians are no different than other Palestinians. We all suffer the same. There have already been a number of articles written in response to CBS’s 60 Minutes report about Christians in the Holy Land. The sexy story in all this appears to be Michael Oren’s interview with Bob Simon of 60 Minutes, and the attempt by Israel, its embassy in the United States and syndicate of lobbying groups to prevent the report in some capacity from airing. The real story told in this piece has been to some degree overshadowed by the Michael Oren story, but also lacks appeal…Read More... | 27 Comments
After watching the 60 Minutes interview with Michael Oren, I felt like puking. If you haven’t seen it yet, here it is. And if you only have a minute, just watch this short segment, where Oren looks Bob Simon straight in the eye with a look that could make your blood curl, and tells him "there's a first time for everything, Bob." Apparently, Oren took it even further during the interview. After much persuading, I got Simon to give me the unedited segment of him grilling the Israeli ambassador in D.C. You gotta see it to believe it.Read More... | 10 Comments
Much has been made of the inept appearance of Michael Oren – American Jew turned Israeli ambassador to the United States - on 60 Minutes, in which he admitted that from time to time he calls up senior TV brass to make certain they censor the work of their writers and editors. This morning, Haaretz reported (Hebrew) that the Prime Minister's Office was intimately in the loop. Why? Because Oren claimed the show was a "potential strategic terrorist attack" against Israel's image in the US. Lo and behold: at the same time Oren was biting his nails, an American Hasbara…Read More... | 56 Comments
Silwan is a dangerous neighborhood. Not only because of the simmering political tensions between the Palestinians and the Jewish settlers occupying houses in the city, but also because the neighborhood is one of the centers of the drug trade. But of all the cities and villages in the West Bank, the Palestinians of Silwan have a reputation as being on the forefront of resistance to Israel’s steady takeover of Palestinian land. In fact, they often proclaim that the third intifada will begin in Silwan regardless of what is happening in the rest of the West Bank. Recently, a thirty five…Read More...
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The Beaten Path
Travel writer and tour guide Yuval Ben-Ami deconstructs the Holy Land's tourist trail.
On the challenges facing a growing population of asylum seekers and refugees in Israel.
Children under occupation
The effects of occupation on minors.
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