The new government, which could survive longer than most observers expect, intends to resume the implementation of the Prawer Plan, aimed to force the Bedouin Palestinian population in the "unrecognized villages" into a narrow territory. Benjamin Netanyahu’s fourth government was sworn in in the nick of time. Due to last-minute controversies over cabinet positions, President Reuven Rivlin and the family members of the new ministers had to wait a couple of hours for the special Knesset session to begin. Alongside the coalition negotiations, prolonged to the very maximum allowed by the law, Thursday night serves as a reminder of the difficulties Netanayhu…Read More... | 35 Comments
The phrase 'Israeli Arabs' is meant to divide us from the rest of the Palestinian people. Thankfully, more and more young Palestinian citizens are no longer scared to openly confront their own Pharaoh and reclaim their story. By Rami Younis "So explain it to me again," Amanda repeated. "How can it be that while Israel celebrates its independence, or whatever they call it, there is no public discussion on the occupation? Or the fact that Israel has been controlling another nation for nearly 50 years? The hypocrisy is staggering!" Now try explaining Israeli society's denial and blindness to a friend from…Read More... | 18 Comments
The success of the Joint List is the Arab public’s message — an outstretched hand — to its Jewish compatriots, which is the antithesis of the message it received in return. By Haggai Matar and Yael Marom Nearly one quarter of Israeli voters cast their ballots for a prime minister whose central message to the public on election day was that Arab citizens of Israel are the enemy. An almost equal number of people cast their votes for: the guy who joined him in delivering that message, the head of the most right-wing party in the Knesset (Naftali Bennett); the guy who based…Read More... | 10 Comments
No matter what happens on election day, or what kind of coalition is formed afterwards, the Joint List's very existence has already changed the face of Israeli history. The fact that the Joint List is likely to be the third largest slate in the next Knesset means they cannot be ignored. All the Israeli papers, analysts and news broadcasters are suddenly forced to relate to "the Arabs" — the 20 percent of the population that are normally out of sight and mind when Israelis goes to the polls. It was both groundbreaking and satisfying to see Joint List chair Ayman…Read More... | 1 Comment
Palestinian Knesset member Haneen Zoabi and her media adviser and acting Joint Arab List spokesperson Emilie Moatti were attacked by rightists Tuesday during a panel at the Ramat Gan College of Law and Business. The attackers were identified with extreme right-wing settler Baruch Marzel, who is running with Eli Yishai's Yachad party. The assailants violently interrupted the panel Zoabi was speaking on, before physically getting on the stage and pouring cola on her head. Moatti was reportedly hit in the head with a flagpole outside the building while Zoabi's staff members attempted to evacuate the MK. Moatti was taken to the…Read More... | 11 Comments
Jewish Israelis who value equality and want a 'sane' country should support the Arab-dominated list, says member Masud Ganaim at Tel Aviv launch event. The Arab Joint List launched its Hebrew-language campaign in central Tel Aviv Wednesday evening and unveiled its slogan: "My answer to racism." Displayed behind the chairmen of the four parties on the list, the phrase was set against a photo of graffiti reading, "Arabs out," the scene of one of many anti-Arab hate crimes that have become commonplace in recent years. Ayman Odeh, chairman of the Arab-Jewish Hadash party and the head of the joint slate, comprised of three…Read More... | 19 Comments
It's time for the local Lorde tribute to go over the Line, in more than one way. Read the previous chapters of The Israel-Palestine Lorde Diaries here. On Boxing Day we traveled down to Bethlehem. We were five: my girlfriend Ruthie, three members of her research team (she is a doctoral student of social psychology) and yours truly. We have all been to Bethlehem before, where Israelis seldom venture. Like other Palestinian cities in the West Bank, Bethlehem is designated "Area A." According to Israeli law, it is illegal for us to be present in Area A, and most are…Read More... | 1 Comment
In a bid to remain relevant with an increased electoral threshold, the three Arab parties and Communist party Hadash are to run on one list in the March 17 elections. In an unprecedented, historic move, Israel's Arab parties Hadash, Balad, Ta'al and Ra'am announced late Thursday night that they will run on a joint slate named "The Joint List" in the upcoming March 17 election. The list will be headed by the Arab-Jewish Hadash party's Ayman Odeh, who was elected party chairman last week, followed by Masud Ghnaim of the Islamist Ra’am and Balad’s Jamal Zahalka in third place. Ahmed…Read More... | 1 Comment
The High Court spent most of Tuesday's hearing questioning Zoabi’s politics rather than deliberating whether the Knesset had the right to suspend her in the first place. Israel's High Court of Justice held a discussion Tuesday morning over Knesset member Haneen Zoabi's (Balad) petition to overrule a decision to suspend her from parliamentary debates for six months. The decision was put into effect by the Knesset Ethics Committee on July 29 and is due to expire at the end of January 2015. Tuesday's session ended without a decision, but justices said one would be made in the coming days. The suspension…Read More... | 35 Comments
Ten years after Arafat's death, an Arab citizen of Israel reflects on a solidarity visit to the father of Palestinian nationalism in his besieged Ramallah compound. By Seraj Assi Ten years ago, on November 11, 2004, Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat died in mysterious circumstances in Paris. Theories ranged from natural causes to assassination. The French, Russian and Swiss teams that investigated the cause all agreed to disagree. In a sense, Arafat was made in the image of Palestine: the mystery of his life and death remains largely unsolved. I met Arafat three years before his death. That was in late December…Read More... | 5 Comments
It’s in how Israel and America, especially their respective leaders, react to these cops' most outrageous crimes. Israeli police are not the only ones with a habit of getting trigger happy when they come up against members of a feared and hated ethnic minority. While many Israeli cops (and soldiers) have a tendency toward overkill with Arabs, many American cops have the same tendency with blacks. But there’s a crucial difference – not necessarily between American and Israeli police, but between the way American and Israeli society, especially their leaders, react to such killings. After police in Ferguson, Missouri killed…Read More... | 33 Comments
Just hours after thousands of Palestinian citizens of Israel demonstrated in the northern Israeli village of Kafr Kanna Saturday in response to the overnight killing from close range of 22-year-old Khir Hamdan by police, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu issued the following statement: Israel is a nation of law. We will not tolerate disturbances and rioting. We will act against those who throw stones, block roads and call for the establishment of a Palestinian state in place of the State of Israel. Whoever does not honor Israeli law will be punished with utmost severity. I will instruct the Interior Minister to evaluate revoking the citizenship…Read More... | 228 Comments
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The Iran Deal
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