The alternatives to military action shouldn’t only be examined when things blow up, but rather in the context of the months and years that preceded this latest round of fighting. When it comes to using military force, I find Netanyahu to be one of the most restrained prime ministers Israel has ever had. I don’t think Bibi wanted this escalation, nor does he believe that it serves his immediate political interests. He did give Hamas a chance for a ceasefire, and the army is escalating its attacks on Gaza very gradually – unlike in Operation Cast Lead for example, in…Read More... | 18 Comments
Marking 47 years of the Israeli occupation since 1967, we asked Activestills photographers to choose one photograph from their archive and write about it. Oren Ziv Going every week to the protests in West Bank village of Bil'in, I knew most of the people who were attending the demonstrations. One of them was Bassem Abu Rahme, also known as "Fill." At every protest he would go to the front and try to talk to the soldiers in Hebrew. On the day I took his photo, some of the protesters managed to cross the first gate of the separation barrier and march between…Read More... | 17 Comments
Unarmed resistance against the wall and the occupation has been taking place for nine consecutive years. With its ups and downs, successes and losses, villagers and supporters gather for a special commemoration protest. Approximately 500 demonstrators gathered in the center of the West Bank village of Bil'in on Friday to mark nine years since village residents began their popular, unarmed resistance against the separation wall. The wall, built on the villagers' agricultural land, has allowed for continuous settlement expansion on their annexed fields and olive groves. Over the past nine years, hundreds of demonstrations have taken place, two activists have…Read More... | 4 Comments
Israeli army arrests 11 Palestinians during night raids on West Bank villages participating in the popular struggle against the wall and settlements. The Israeli army raided three West Bank villages this past week, arresting a total 11 activists in connection with organizing weekly demonstrations against the occupation, local activists said. According to the activists, the villages of Nabi Saleh and Ni'ilin were raided in the dead of night between Monday and Tuesday, while the village Kufr Qaddum was raided during during the early hours of Thursday morning. Among those arrested were a minor and a photographer. Four out of seven Qaddum…Read More... | 16 Comments
This week: Border Police bloopers in Bil'in, asylum seekers in Tel Aviv, Palestinian activists launch campaign in the Jordan Valley, anti-Arab graffiti in Silwan, ultra-orthodox Jews against the draft in Jerusalem, a far-right politician hands out award for McCarthyism in Israeli schools, and solidarity outside Holot 'open' detention center.Read More... | 3 Comments
Just when you thought it couldn't get any more embarrassing or distorted, the IDF Spokesperson's Unit has managed to top itself. On Sunday, the unit published a new video on its YouTube channel, showing scenes of Palestinian demonstrators throwing rocks and Israeli soldiers firing rounds of tear gas "in self-defense" in the West Bank village of Qaddum. Every Friday for the past two years, the villagers of Qaddum (along with Israeli and international activists) have marched toward the nearby settlement of Kedumim to protest the continuing expropriation of their land. As in every un-armed protest across the West Bank, the IDF…Read More... | 28 Comments
Palestinian popular committees hold a convention in Nabi Saleh in bid to promote and unite the popular struggle against occupation and apartheid, launching a new type of weekly protest. The demonstration that followed was welcomed by soldiers with the traditional tear gas barrage. The popular committees coordinating much of the unarmed struggle against the wall and settlements in the West Bank started a new campaign on Saturday. In addition to the weekly Friday protests in Bil'in, Ni'ilin, Nabi Saleh, al-Ma'asara, Qaddum and other places, each of which focuses on local issues, activists are now planning to hold a central gathering…Read More... | 1 Comment
Joining Bil'in's weekly demonstration against the wall after not attending for a while exposes the little differences in the routine of occupation and resistance. It's been a couple of months since my last visit to Bil'in. Not too long, but long enough to suddenly notice those small changes that occur in every living environment, the changes that people can sometimes miss if you're watching from within. It started on the way from Tel Aviv. Passing by the settlement of Hashmonaim I was surprised to suddenly realize that there was one less fence in sight – and this in a region where…Read More... | 8 Comments
This week: Palestinians demonstrate against the Israeli separation wall and U.S. foreign policy, construction and demolition of Palestinian homes, Afghan asylum seekers struggle in Europe, a funeral for a Palestinian who died in Israeli custody, a hearing on the Prawer-Begin Plan, animal rights activists in Tel Aviv, and Palestinians seek water access in the Jordan Valley.Read More...
Since 1994, activists in the Italy's Susa Valley have been engaged in a popular struggle against government plans to build a 57 kilometer high-speed railway. On a trip to the West Bank, the Susa Valley activists came to better understand life under Israeli occupation, and came away with new insights for their own struggle back home. By Riccardo Carraro When we use the term “popular struggle” we usually mean it in the context of collective, grassroots participation in a fight that is inclusive of several sectors of society, without distinction based on gender, age, culture, etc. And although each popular struggle…Read More... | 8 Comments
A garden of flowers planted in used tear gas grenades memorializes Bassem Abu Rahmah, killed by Israeli forces in 2009 in Bil'in. But recent AP photo coverage looks mostly at the flowers and misses the memorial. Text by Elias Nawawieh Photos by Activestills.org The act is one of both peaceful resistance and an answer to the separation wall erected by the State of Israel. Residents of the village of Bil'in have created an oasis in the arid landscape of the West Bank, and sown flowers in tear gas canisters which were fired at protesters by Israeli forces. Bassem Abu Rahmah,…Read More... | 4 Comments
The IDF insists on not indicting the security officer who killed Bassem Abu Rahme during a demonstration in the West Bank village of Bil'in, despite being provided with enough details to find him. By Yesh Din, written by Yossi Gurvitz In April 2009, during the weekly demonstration in the West Bank village of Bil'in, a uniformed Israeli officer fired a gas canister into the chest of demonstrator Bassem Abu Rahme, killing him. The killing was carried out in the presence of senior officers. Firing a canister at a direct trajectory is contrary to the orders of the IDF itself, not to…Read More... | 6 Comments
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