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  • What Netanyahu can easily offer Obama on Gaza

    Three 'gestures' Israel can easily make that will radically improve the lives of at least thousands of Palestinians — all without compromising one inch on its own security concerns. By Amir Rotem In the hall of mirrors that is international diplomacy, all is being polished for the Netanyahu-Obama summit. Lists of gifts the two are expected to present each other are being leaked and commented upon. One of the things being said is that, on the advice of the Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT), Israel’s prime minister will offer up a number of gestures to Palestinian residents…

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  • How Palestinians can prevent a new permit regime in Jerusalem

    The history of Israel’s permit regime in the West Bank should serve as a warning that even temporary closures on Palestinian neighborhoods of Jerusalem can have in serious, long-term political consequences. By Yael Berda After a violent couple of weeks in Jerusalem, the Israeli government gave police discretion to impose a closure on certain East Jerusalem neighborhoods to monitor the movement of the city’s Palestinian population. The measures, which severely impede freedom of movement — preventing people from going to work, children from going to school, businesses from receiving supplies and equipment, and halting critical municipal services — are justified…

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  • A song was born: The tale of a controversial tune

    Six or seven years ago, I was sitting in Tel Aviv's Cafe Ginzburg with a man I admire deeply. Mikhael Manekin was then, along with Yehuda Shaul, one of heads of Breaking the Silence. BTS was still a budding organization at the time, made up entirely of Israeli soldiers who participated in the occupation and sought to document and inform of its atrocities. The organization was expanding its activities. Manekin came to Tel Aviv to brainstorm on organizing tours for Israelis and foreigners in Hebron. "I would like to bring authors there," he told me. "I feel that authors have…

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  • Who can travel from the Gaza Strip to the West Bank?

    Soccer players yes, poets nein The people of Gisha NGO translated their table showing who can and who can’t travel from the Gaza Strip to the West Bank. Here it is.   Note that for a person to be allowed to travel from the Strip in the first place, the IDF and the ISA (Shin Bet) have to consider that person to be of no security risk, and they have to pass severe security checks at the Erez Checkpoint. Thus all the arguments about “but they might be security risks!” is hogwash.

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  • A month since flotilla report legitimizing Gaza Strip blockade

    The Palmer Committee did not really investigate the IDF's attack on the Gaza Flotilla in May 2010; instead, it sought  diplomatic compromise By Eyal Clyne The release of the report of the UN-appointed Palmer Panel a month ago was nothing less than a source of pride for Israeli speakers, who repeatedly emphasised its ruling that the naval blockade on Gaza (unlike the closure on land) is “lawful”. Many journalists rushed to quote this bottom line from Israeli PR specialists, as if it were the legal truth; they never bothered to read the document itself. In doing so, they neglected some…

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