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democracy

  • Israel's Knesset just voted on a very dangerous law for democracy

    The draft law, which passed the first of three votes on Monday, would allow the expulsion of Arab MKs from the Knesset. It is one of several recent steps by the Netanyahu government to limit Palestinian political participation. Minutes before leaving for the spring recess Monday night, Israel’s Knesset passed the first reading of a law allowing legislators, with a three-quarters super-majority, to expel other members of Knesset for making statements they deem beyond the pale. The law is widely understood to have been drawn up to specifically target Arab-Palestinian members of the Knesset, particularly of one faction, a legislative…

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  • Ethnic cleansing poll a dangerous sign for Israel

    The vast majority of Jewish Israelis don't want to give up their privilege. But nobody has the right to 'democratically' deny rights to another. The most shocking piece of information to come out of a Pew Research Center survey of Israeli society published Tuesday is that nearly half of Jews in the country say they support the ethnic cleansing of Arabs. Forty-eight percent of Jewish respondents agreed/strongly agreed that “Arabs should be expelled or transferred from Israel.” Digging deeper into the data, however, that glimpse into the collective political mindset of half of Israel’s Jewish population becomes less and less surprising.…

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  • Israelis elected a non-democracy

    Obama must understand that these elections were more than just a referendum on Netanyahu — they were a referendum on Israel's character, and Israelis did not vote for democratic ideals. Many on the center-left in Israel are still trying to wrap their head around Netanyahu's victory. They simply cannot grasp that most Israelis really want another right-wing government led by Netanyahu. In Tel Aviv and Haifa, the only two of Israel's 10 largest cities where the Zionist Union got more votes than the Likud, some people seem to be rationalizing the victory with the anti-Arab, fear-mongering campaign Bibi led in…

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  • The next time Netanyahu talks about 'common values'

    Hours after disavowing the two-state solution, the Israeli prime minister makes clear that his version of democracy includes as few Arabs as possible. A few hours after the polls opened in Israeli elections on Tuesday, incumbent Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu published a message that offends the very spirit of democracy and equality. Invoking military terminology, the prime minister warned that his own “right-wing regime” is in danger because “the Arabs are mobilizing in large numbers ... to the polls.” Lamenting that the Right doesn’t have its own get-out-the-vote movements, Netanyahu said it does have its “Order 8,” an emergency call-up…

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  • Liberman to head of Joint List: You're not wanted here

    Why is it that neither the debate host nor the heads of the other political parties stopped the foreign minister as he alluded to the expulsion of one out of every five Israelis? By Oren Persico When does staying silent become collaboration? Last Thursday, Channel 2 hosted a debate between the heads of all the major parties (aside from Netanyahu and Herzog). During the debate, Yisrael Beiteinu leader Avigdor Liberman directed some pretty harsh language against Joint List head Ayman Odeh. Liberman claimed that Odeh and his friends in the Joint List represent terrorist organizations and said they should be…

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  • No Voice: Hopes for Israeli elections from those who cannot vote

    Over 200,000 people with no legal status live in Israel today. There are another 4 million in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. All of these people are directly affected by Israeli elections but they have not right to vote. This is what they have to say — about the Right and the Left, the ‘demographic threat,’ peace, war, democracy and dictatorship.   ‘Occupied people cannot vote for their occupier’ By Bassam Almohor The argument heats up at one of the tables in this men-only café in a Palestinian city. Israeli elections are a hot topic of discussion for the…

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  • Liberman's de-patriation plan of illusions

    Liberman's proposal to cure Palestinian citizens of their 'split personality' violates pretty much everything democracy stands for. Headlines blazed in Friday’s Yedioth Ahronoth announcing the outlines of a peace proposal released by Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman. It’s not clear what prompted Liberman to release the plan at this moment – campaign considerations, a brief drop in attention as the "Jewish Nation-State Law" took center stage, or a distraction from Israel’s deteriorating foreign relations as yet another European parliamentary debate on Palestinian statehood was held on Friday, this time in France. But there is nothing new about it for Liberman, who has been…

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  • In my name, in your name, in all of our names

    We talk endlessly about equality and feminism while putting up with a bunch of greedy pyromaniacs controlling the Middle East and running a war over our heads, a war in which we are but extras. And yet the role they assign us is instrumental: we are factories for their cannon fodder. By Naamit Mor Haim (translated from Hebrew by Dr. Assaf Oron) During this recent Gaza war and its various ceasefires, I found myself astonished at the catch-phrase popular among the Israeli left – on banners at demonstrations and plastered social-media profile pictures, bold white letters against a black background, in…

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  • In Gaza, looking back at Hamas’ legacy

    Gaza’s younger generation always believed in Hamas’s right to be in power, but Hamas never believed in the youth’s right to take part in their own society. By Abeer Ayyoub I was only 18 when Hamas won the parliamentary elections in 2006. I wasn’t fully aware of the difference Hamas could make for the country, or the development the PA might have been able to offer if it had stayed in power. I was, however, totally convinced that the democratic results should be respected. Hamas won the elections, but democracy wasn’t respected. The Islamic movement was boycotted by almost everyone…

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  • In Israel, Holocaust obsession prevents real change

    A new law punishing people for calling each other 'Nazi' makes clear that the Holocaust has became a tool used to keep us, the Jews, in a position of eternal victimhood - to blind us from seeing what is happing in Israel. That's exactly what the right wing wants. By Nir Baram "Israel became boring," complained a reporter who was obsessed with Israel for many years, "the world is changing and in Israel everything is the same…" *** One of the most important articles ever to be published in Israel was "The Need to Forget." In his 1988 op-ed, Yehuda…

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  • On the Adam Verete affair and anti-democratic trends: Three notes

    The case of Adam Verete, the schoolteacher whose contract is on the line following a complaint from a right-wing student over the “leftist” views he expressed in the classroom, continues to make waves in Israel. For many progressives, activists and columnists, the story serves as strong evidence of a rightward trend in Israel, as well as the decline of democratic principles. Verete, a teacher in an ORT high school in the quiet, northern town of Kiryat Tivon, confronted a student named Sapir Sabah after she expressed racist views in his classroom. In a separate incident, Sabah became angry after Verete criticized…

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  • Two state vs. one state debate is a waste of time, political energy

     Your favorite pastime is a part of the occupation.  Arguably the most popular political debate on Israel/Palestine is the one taking place between supporters of the two-state solution and those who support a one-state idea. A piece by Professor Ian Lustick in the New York Times won a lot of attention recently, and it’s not surprising: from our own modest experience here at +972 Magazine, I can state that we have noticed long ago that pieces based on the idea that “the two-state solution is dead/not dead” or “the one-state solution is possible/impossible” win a lot of attention and get…

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+972 is an independent, blog-based web magazine. It was launched in August 2010, resulting from a merger of a number of popular English-language blogs dealing with life and politics in Israel and Palestine.

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