As Twitter and text messaging push vowels out of English to economize on space, could the language end up looking more Semitic than Germanic? I’m used to seeing abbreviations on Twitter, Gchat, and SMS. But I was surprised recently when an editor closed an email with “Rgds.” The “s” on the end helped me guess that it wasn’t short for “Rigid” or “Raged,” or so I hoped. Given the context, I assumed he meant “Regards.” But I wondered how such a word ended up in a business letter? Did it mean that Twitter-ese is making its way into formal, written correspondence?…Read More... | 10 Comments
By Zoe Jick This week's provocative NY Times op-ed by Peter Beinart is already the subject of much controversy among those engaged in public debate about Israel and Zionism. Coming from a prominent academic voice of liberal Zionism, Beinart’s message pushes the boundaries of pro-Israel activism by maintaining his “devotion to the Jewish people” while allowing for boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) in the occupied territory, or “undemocratic Israel.” His statements will incite backlash from the American Jewish community, many of whom protest BDS across campuses, co-ops and institutions nationwide. His call for locality-focused BDS aside, the op-ed’s most valuable lesson is…Read More... | 9 Comments
Professor and author Bernard Avishai published an article in Harper's Magazine that sparked a +972 debate on Zionism. Here, in a post that originally appeared on his blog, he responds to some of the charges against his positions that have since been sounded in the blogosphere. By Bernard Avishai At bottom, the question my Harper's piece tries to answer is deceptively simple and by no means relevant to the Palestinian right of return alone. It is this: how can a democratic state, a commonwealth of free citizens, be reconciled with the right of citizens, collectively, to sustain national distinction? How is an…Read More... | 54 Comments
An alternative understanding of Zionism sees no contradiction between liberalism and Zionism, and makes possible various political arrangements, which do not place the national aspirations of Jews ahead of those of Palestinians. By Jerry Haber Can one be a liberal (or: progressive) and a Zionist? The debate has been going on for some time now, and recent entries in the debate on +972 by Joseph Dana, Larry Derfner, and Abir Kopty, are worth reading. What’s interesting is that both the advocates and detractors of liberal Zionism agree that there is an inherent contradiction between being liberal and being Zionist. Derfner considers…Read More... | 69 Comments
Many have argued that the US is no longer a neutral broker between the Israelis and the Palestinians. I'll take it one step further: is English even the appropriate mediating language? William Shakespeare famously asked, "What's in a name?" I (less famously) will ask, "What's in a language?" Today, I called the mobile provider Orange to argue about my bill. I was asked to provide them (again) with my email address. Me spelling it out went something like this... Me: “R” for Roee, Romeo, like the Hebrew letter “raysh” Orange agent: “M?” Me (thinking to myself): “How the #$%W#$ did…Read More... | 7 Comments
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Last Metro to Taksim
Yuval Ben-Ami reports from Istanbul.
Reports, maps, infographics and other documents on human rights and democracy.
Children under occupation
The effects of occupation on minors.
On the challenges facing a growing population of asylum seekers and refugees in Israel.
A series of striking infographics.
- MOST READMOST COMMENTED24 HOURS|WEEK|MONTH
Is a binational identity possible in Israel? http://t.co/yFmq5vBPGV
The unwitting common ground in the debate over binationalism in Israel http://t.co/qDoWMqR8fO by Jeremiah Haber
VID: Former female Israeli soldiers break their silence http://t.co/2H7V47Cj9I by @MairavZ
Israeli MK's 'sexy' pose goes viral on Facebook http://t.co/vktM2Rk4OH by @AmiKaufman
The soldiers' stories that Israel lacks the courage to hear http://t.co/rlleFPDVVq By Larry Derfner, cc @ShovrimShtika