Where do the U.S. and Israel want Hamas: as part of a transparent political system, or in underground tunnels? By Sam Bahour Palestinian “unity,” reconciling tensions between Hamas and Fatah, is being revered as the foundation that can extract Gaza from the misery wrought upon it by yet another brutal Israeli military onslaught. The devastation from what Israel called “Operation Protective Edge” is overwhelming: nearly 2,000 Palestinians dead, over 10,000 wounded and paralyzed, and a third of the 1.8 million people in Gaza homeless. Added to this human tragedy is the rabid destruction of Gaza’s civilian infrastructure. Palestinian political “unity”…Read More... | 11 Comments
Sometimes I fantasize about what would happen if I were to be declared a traitor by the authorities. How would those women with whom I've worked for so long react. Now I'm beginning to understand. By Ruti Lavie (translated from Hebrew by Michal Wertheimer Shimoni) This week I unfriended another friend who reacted to my posts on Facebook with so much anger and rage I just couldn't take it anymore. How can one compare unfriending friends to losing lives, which has become so ubiquitous here? But life isn't a balanced affair. Technically it was very simple - a click on…Read More... | 21 Comments
The great mystery is: Why? In the Cairo ceasefire talks, Netanyahu is snatching diplomatic defeat from the jaws of military victory. I have no explanation for why he’s doing this and I have yet to hear a convincing one. There must be something Netanyahu knows that no one else does. Otherwise his concessions at the Cairo talks, after blitzing the Gaza Strip for five weeks, leaving Hamas able to do no more than fire short-range rockets over the Israeli border, and being hailed in Israel as a warrior king, make no sense at all. Meretz leader Zahava Gal-On gave an…Read More... | 19 Comments
When it comes to Israeli policies, Labor likes to paint itself as the complete opposite of Benjamin Netanyahu and his Likud party. That is, unless we're talking about Gaza. By Aaron Magid In the wake of the 2013 elections, Israel's Labor Party was consistently critical of Netanyahu’s performance as prime minister. Just last month, Labor Chairman Isaac Herzog slammed Netanyahu for isolating Israel from the international community. “Netanyahu speaks [but] the world doesn’t listen,” exclaimed Herzog. Yet during the recent conflict in Gaza, the Labor Party’s usual critical approach towards Netanyahu shifted dramatically, with influential Labor lawmakers sounding eerily similar to…Read More... | 4 Comments
The night the left took back the streets: Over 500 anti-war protesters brushed off arrests and police violence Saturday night to demonstrate against the assault on Gaza. By Leehee Rothschild Saturday night's demonstration in Tel Aviv was by far the most successful one held against the current assault on Gaza. With all due respect to those who were arrested last night, neither their arrests nor the police's brutality are the main story. Because for the first time since the beginning of Operation Protective Edge, and after weeks of hiding behind police fences and fleeing hysterically from violent right-wing activists, the Israeli…Read More... | 12 Comments
Dozens of supporters, including past refusers, hold demonstration outside Haifa draft board office in solidarity with 19-year-old Udi Segal. By Moriel Rothman-Zecher and Yuval Orr For the past month, the news in Israel/Palestine has been filled with reports of more and more people killed, the vast majority of them Palestinians. As much of Israeli society is swept up in the fever of the most recent war on Gaza, there are those voices that refuse to accept a present, or future, filled with violence, occupation, fear and hostility. One of those voices belongs to Udi Segal, a 19-year-old Israeli from Kibbutz…Read More... | 15 Comments
Photos and text: Anne Paq, Basel Yazouri / Activestills.org Tens of thousands of Palestinians returned to their homes across the Gaza Strip on July 26, after a 40-hour humanitarian ceasefire was agreed to between Israel and Hamas. Over 200,000 Gazans have been displaced since the beginning of Operation Protective Edge, due to Israeli airstrikes across the Strip. The ceasefire came to an end on Sunday morning after rockets exploded in Israeli territory overnight, and Israel's refusal to agree to an extension offered by Hamas. The airstrikes destroyed homes, UN schools and hospitals last week, leaving a trail of devastation and…Read More... | 10 Comments
I know of many Palestinians who do not like Hamas. Yet for them, the Gaza war is about the siege - part of their own war of independence. Israelis refuse to get that. In The Fog of War, Errol Morris’ excellent documentary, former U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara speaks about a certain inability to understand the enemy – one that stems from a lack of empathy. In the film, McNamara, a brilliant systems analyst, who is today associated more than anything with the Vietnam War, says that part of President Kennedy’s successful management of the Cuban Missile Crisis was his…Read More... | 98 Comments
'Wars on Gaza have become part of Israel's system of governance': An interview with filmmaker Yotam Feldman
In his new documentary, 'The Lab,' Yotam Feldman explores how Israel's weapons industries interact with the country's politics, economy and military decision-making. Israeli weapons, military technology and know-how become more valuable because they have been field-tested in its wars and combat against Palestinians and neighboring countries. A conversation with Yotam Feldman about his film, arms dealers and Israel's war economy. By Ofri Ilani, translated from Hebrew by Ofer Neiman Perhaps we should start with the question of Israel's international standing. In recent years it is often termed as "growing global isolation." This isolation may diminish at times, but there is…Read More... | 6 Comments
Examples of racism are abundant in the Israeli press. Both individual journalists and the media outlets that publish them must be taken to task for stereotyping Palestinians, and in some cases, inciting violence against them. By I’lam: Media Center for Arab Palestinians in Israel It is not altogether true that free expression is under threat in Israel. Sure, one may have been led into believing so, what with the passing in 2011 of the “Nakba Law,” penalizing commemoration of the Palestinian Nakba, and the “Anti-Boycott Law,” restricting anyone calling for a boycott of Israeli institutions, including in the occupied Palestinian…Read More... | 28 Comments
Using cold logic to explain the killings of civilians is an attempt to deaden our emotions and detach us from inexplicable tragedy. By Jake Meth When I was younger, I always hoped that my older self would have a great explanation for why innocent civilians kept getting killed in violent conflicts. But as Israel began another air campaign against the Gaza Strip last week, I suddenly realized that this explanation for which I had waited so long was nowhere to be found. I was 15 when the U.S. invaded Iraq, when it seemed as if every other headline in the…Read More... | 10 Comments
A demonstration took place Wednesday night place in front of Defense Minister Ehud Barak's house in Tel Aviv, protesting the killing of Hamas military chief Ahmed Jabari and the launch of of 'Operation Pillar of Defense.' The demonstrators called for an end to the bloodshed and for dialogue between Israel and Hamas. A second demonstration will be held this evening (Thursday); see here for more details. By Israel Social TV. Israel Social TV is an independent media NGO working to promote social change, human rights, social justice and equality, and to mobilize its viewers towards activism.Read More... | 8 Comments
The last few days of violence on the Gaza-Israel border are eerily reminiscent of the days leading up to Operation Cast Lead. A recent look at Israeli media points to a possible war. By Sol Salbe The escalation of fighting in the Gaza strip and southern Israel since Saturday is the top news item in the Israeli media. Over 100 rockets fired from the Strip have wounded three Israelis, and Israeli military strikes have killed at least five Palestinians and wounded dozens more. Haaretz analysts Amos Harel and Avi Issacharof foresee the next step: Gaza flare-up could lead to another…Read More... | 10 Comments
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Assault on Gaza
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The murders that preceded the war in Gaza.
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Hamas tells foreign airline carriers: Don't fly to Israel from 6 a.m. tomorrow (via @haaretzcom)
Palestinian artist Bushra Shana turns photos of death and destruction into living photos: http://t.co/cOsPEXJcjp http://t.co/yiyxgOpPYB
Palestinians continue to create life from death: http://t.co/cOsPEXJcjp
RT @MairavZ: Hamas military chief Mohammed Deif believed to have been killed in Israel's airstrike, sources say http://t.co/zAvOiyRrnP via …
22 killed, over 100 wounded in Israeli strikes in last 24 hours, according to Gaza health officials.