According to the court's ruling, force feeding, universally recognized as a form of torture, is a legitimate tool to use against hunger strikers. By Noam Rotem For the past two months three Palestinians have been on hunger strike over their administrative detention without trial. The three are the brothers Mahmoud Balboul (a police chief), Muhammad Balboul (a dentist), and Malk al-Qadi (a journalist). On Sunday Israel's High Court ruled that the force-feeding law, which allows Israeli authorities to forcibly feed hunger striking prisoners against their will if their health condition is deemed to be life-threatening is able to balance between the public…Read More... | 2 Comments
A few weeks after it began expanding its reach into 'new media' outlets, the IDF Censor is now demanding that police and first responders allow it to supervise information they pass on to journalists through WhatsApp. The move represents a new, secondary layer of prior restraint. The IDF Censor is demanding that spokespeople for the Israel Police and other first responders allow it to supervise information they pass along to journalists via mobile messaging app WhatsApp, according to a report by Army Radio Tuesday. The demand appears to be yet another step in the new chief IDF Censor’s attempts to…Read More...
Seven leading Israeli news outlets went to the same briefing with a senior defense official, and wrote six entirely different stories about it. In an era when few people read beyond the headlines, how we understand the world around us is increasingly polarized. Most people do not read past the first few sentences of online news articles. Even more don’t read past the headline at all. And yet, a large percentage of those who read only the headline nevertheless go on to share that article on social media. (You can read more about that here and here.) [tmwinpost] I mention that because the…Read More...
Neither the army nor the police bat an eyelid when settlers set up shop in the front yard of a privately-owned Palestinian home for an entire weekend. By Michael Salisbury-Corech Dozens of settlers in Hebron took over the front yard of the home of well-known local Palestinian nonviolent activist Issa Amro over the weekend. Israeli soldiers remained with the settlers for over 24 hours, guarding them as they slept, prayed, and ate — all the while blocking the entrance to the house. [tmwinpost] Amro rents the house from its Palestinian owner, using it as the community center for the "Youth Against Settlements"…Read More... | 3 Comments
Avi Benayahu, who served as IDF Spokesperson during both Operation Cast Lead and the Mavi Marmara incident, explains his worldview and tactics in a lecture obtained by +972 Magazine, including how he sent army officers pretending to be civilians onto foreign television news. Until Brigadier-General (ret.) Avi Benayahu was appointed to be the IDF Spokesperson in 2007, the unit did little more than send Israeli newspapers photos of soldiers celebrating Passover. But between 2007 and 2011, Benayahu — then-Chief of Staff Gabi Ashkenazi's right-hand — revolutionized the antiquated unit, transforming it into one of Israel's leading "hasbara" (propaganda, or "public diplomacy")…Read More... | 2 Comments
The IDF is developing new technology that will eventually cut down on the need for soldiers to go to the front lines. What does this mean for the Palestinians whose lives will hang on the decision of a machine? The Israeli army is optimistic that there will be no need for soldiers to be stationed on Israel’s borders in the future. Not because there will be peace, and not because there will be no need to maintain militarized borders. Rather it is because they are working towards unmanned, weaponized patrol vehicles that will do the job instead. A blog post on…Read More... | 13 Comments
The incident is not the first time Israeli security officials have been documented attacking journalists at West Bank protests, and in the village of Nabi Saleh. An IDF officer videotaped throwing rocks at Israeli and Palestinian photojournalists last week was sentenced to two weeks in prison. A second officer was sentenced to 30 days confinement on base. In a video first published by +972 and Activestills on Friday, a deputy company commander can be seen throwing rocks at a freelance Israeli photojournalist and a Palestinian photographer who works for Agence France‑Presse (AFP). One of the officers also tackled the Israeli…Read More... | 3 Comments
Security agencies in Israel love to give reporters information without attribution, refusing to stand behind what they say. Every once in a while, they publish the same information on their official websites. By Ido Kenan In July 2011, a year after the Mavi Marmara flotilla incident, in which passengers attacked Israeli forces who then killed 10 of them, Turkish organization IHH planned a second flotilla to Gaza. In an attempt to preempt the second flotilla, the IDF's Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT), Maj.-Gen. Eitan Dangot, approved the transfer of medical equipment donated by the Turkish Red Crescent…Read More... | 4 Comments
Nearly two months after the end of Operation Protective Edge, the Israeli media refuses to ask the difficult questions. Who decided that killing entire families is now allowed? What is the justification for doing so? And why won't the army explain why it killed five members of the Joudah family? Why doesn't anyone care about the Joudah family? Nearly two months have passed since Israeli Air Force pilots bombed their yard in Gaza, killing the mother of the family and four of her children. Until today, the IDF has not published an explanation of the incident. Actually, almost no one…Read More... | 30 Comments
The recurring elements in the manipulation of public opinion and discourse in wartime also appeared during ‘Protective Edge.’ Shaked Spier brings you the Ten Truths, Ten Commandments and Ten Lies of war. By Shaked Spier The truth Several truths dominated the hegemonic discourse in Israel during and since “Protective Edge”: 1. Israel doesn't want war, we only defend ourselves 2. Hamas was solely responsible for this war 3. The Hamas leadership is evil and looks evil 4. Israel is defending a noble cause, not special interests 5. Hamas carries out intentional atrocities; we only make mistakes (“collateral damage”) 6. Hamas…Read More... | 2 Comments
You really have to give credit where credit is due. Even if it is to the IDF. Soldiers killed 12-year-old Muhammad al-Anati during clashes with local youth in the Hebron area on Sunday. According to reports, al-Anati was killed after being struck by a bullet in the back, and was not involved in the clashes. However, it seems that the IDF is willing to learn from past mistakes. This time, unlike recent similar events, the IDF Spokesperson's Unit immediately released a message [Hebrew] saying an inquiry had been launched and that the army expressed its regret over al-Anati's death. One can hope…Read More... | 36 Comments
The Israeli army recently began allowing reporters to join night raids in the West Bank. The result is exactly what you might expect. By Oren Persico / 'The 7th Eye' One week after the start of "Operation Brother's Keeper," the IDF Spokesperson's Unit arranged an opportunity for the Israeli press just in time for the newspapers’ weekend editions: an opportunity to report from the front lines. Journalists were invited to join military units operating in the Palestinian Authority and to cover the operation to eliminate Hamas infrastructure and the search for the three kidnapped Israelis from up close. This system, embedded journalism,…Read More... | 12 Comments
IDF officer admits Operation Brother's Keeper has little to do with returning the kidnapped teenagers. By Yael Marom Parts of Operation Brother's Keeper were planned in advance and are being implemented with no connection to their stated purpose - the return of the three kidnapped Israelis teenagers - according to an IDF officer in Jenin. The officer, who spoke to the ultra-Orthodox news outlet "Hadrei Haredim," (Hebrew) said that the army has been preparing for an operation in the city due to the arming of residents there. According to Hadrei Hadarim, the officer stated that the army is intentionally trying to…Read More...
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