As Noam Sheizaf's recent headline states, "the Nakba's memory is more present than ever in Israel." The Nakba, literally, "the catastrophe," is the name given to the massive deportation of more then 700,000 Palestinians from what became the State of Israel in 1948. Sheizaf goes on to point out how efforts, such as the "Nakba law," which authorizes the finance minister to withdraw funds from organizations commemorating the day, have backfired and effectively injected Nakba consciousness into the global discourse. From Tel Aviv to Jerusalem and throughout the West Bank and Gaza, activists marched to assert a history which is no longer…Read More... | 5 Comments
For the first time in 24 years, Israel Police protected nearly 500 Women of the Wall members Friday morning as they gathered at the Western Wall (Kotel) in Jerusalem for their monthly prayer service. The women were confronted by thousands of ultra-Orthodox protesters, both young girls who watched from the side and men of all ages, who acted violently towards the group of women. Protesters reportedly threw stones, water bottlers, garbage and whatever else they could in their direction, and a few were reportedly arrested. The police managed to enable a small group of 20-30 women to actually reach the women's section…Read More... | 7 Comments
A way out of the diplomatic dead end. By Dahlia Scheindlin and Noam Sheizaf The Israeli-Palestinian negotiation process has reached a dead end. The two-state paradigm has been deemed unrealistic so many times, that mentioning it creates cynicism and bitterness in both societies. But a generally agreed alternative to the principle of partition has not yet emerged. We therefore suggest a new framework for diplomatic engagement, one that carries with it a clear deadline. Without diminishing the many facets, layers and problems in the conflict (refugees, land, control over resources, holy sites, sovereignty and national self-determination), one issue is the most urgent…Read More... | 57 Comments
Hundreds of women - including MKs Tamar Zandberg (Meretz), Stav Shaffir (Labor) and Michal Rozin (Meretz) - gathered at Jerusalem's Western Wall in honor of Rosh Hodesh (first of the Hebrew calendar month, today, Nissan) Tuesday morning. They joined the usual group of women from the Women of the Wall movement, who go every month at 7 a.m. to pray there on the other side of the barricade separating them from the men - but are often harassed and prevented from doing so - and even at times, arrested. According to the regulations at the Western Wall, as determined by its chief rabbi, and…Read More... | 18 Comments
Beit Safafa is a Palestinian neighborhood just south of West Jerusalem, inside annexed and occupied East Jerusalem, all within the boundaries of Israel's vast Jerusalem municipality. It is situated between the Green Line to its northern perimeter, and the Israeli settlement of Gilo on its southern perimeter. (To find Beit Safafa on Ir Amim's map below, move your eyes directly down from "West Jerusalem" and you will see it, just below the Green Line.) Until 1967, Beit Safafa was divided between Israeli-controlled West Jerusalem and the Jordanian-controlled West Bank. Train tracks ran through it along the 1949 Armistice Lines. When Israel occupied East…Read More... | 16 Comments
On the Palestinian issue, the new leader of the Israeli center holds positions that take several steps back from ideas held by Israeli negotiators in the previous decade. The surprising success of Yair Lapid in the Israeli elections has led many people to believe that a new window of opportunity could be open for a settlement between Israel and the Palestinians. Lapid himself had said before the elections that he will demand a resumption of negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority. Lapid did not, however, detail the policy principles which could reignite said negotiations. His party's platform – available…Read More... | 93 Comments
In the second post of my three-part series about media and publishing, I examine some misconceptions about the Israeli-Palestinian 'conflict,' and the ways in which the media feeds into a binary that leaves non-Jews and non-Palestinians out of the spotlight. When my agent and I shopped my book about Israel’s migrant workers and African refugees around, we got a lot of those “We love it but it’s not right for us” and “This is an important book that needs to be published. But there’s no audience for this” kind of responses. But perhaps the most common response was, “Where are…Read More... | 18 Comments
Israel is threatening to bisect the West Bank by building in the E1 area, between the settlement of Ma'aleh Adumim and Jerusalem. A photographic journey shot in medium format film - starting east of Jerusalem, through the west of the city and all the way to Tel Aviv - provides portraits of how different rights are extended to different people under Israeli rule. By Mareike Lauken and Keren Manor Our journey begins in Ma'aleh Adumim, one of 124 Israeli settlements established in the Occupied Palestinian Territories since 1967. With its green lush palm trees, olive tree roundabouts and parks,…Read More... | 14 Comments
Netanyahu didn't invent the E-1 dealbreaker that's got the world so mad at him; it goes back to Rabin and reflects overwhelming Israeli opinion. Except for right wingers, people look at the outrage over Bibi's revival of the E-1 plan, which would connect Jerusalem and the eastward Ma'aleh Adumim settlement with thousands of new homes, and say: Well, that's Bibi for you, picking fights for no good reason. Who needs more settlement construction? But if you ask them - "them" meaning all but the left-wing fringe among Israeli Jews and the country's supporters abroad - whether they're willing to give…Read More... | 39 Comments
The decision to promote construction plans for the E1 area and build 3,000 housing units in the West Bank has European diplomats making a last-ditch effort to save the two-state solution. Israeli ambassadors in several European capitals have been summoned to receive angry responses to Jerusalem's recent decision to construct 3,000 new housing units in the West Bank settlements and promote the zoning plan for E1 area, northeast of Jerusalem. E1 is the only remaining corridor between the large Palestinian cities in the West Bank. It is the final brick in the great project Likud and Kadima prime ministers have…Read More... | 26 Comments
No. Not again. This can't be happening again. But there it is. Once again, just like it was four years ago, it is winter. Reports on tension, violence, the regular exchange of rockets on southern Israeli towns, and assassinations and airstrikes on Gaza dominate the media once more. Calls for revenge and a more resilient response are commonly heard. And then: a bigger attack. Something that Israel knows will drag both sides into using all they have, usually resulting in hundreds of dead and extreme destruction on the Palestinian side, and several killed and severe damage on the Israeli one.…Read More... | 18 Comments
Na'amat, a veteran organization purporting to advocate on behalf of women in Israel, recently hauled a community-based group to court. The group's crime? Occupying an abandoned building to provide housing for families in need. A closer look at the incident reveals a group in the service of the Ashkenazi hegemony, promoting paternalistic notions of 'help' while contributing to the oppression of Palestinians and Mizrahi Jews. By Inna Michaeli and Yasmeen Daher On one page of the NA’AMAT-USA website, the word “help” appears at least eight times. A recent event involving the Zionist women’s organization reveals the limitations of “help” when…Read More... | 13 Comments
Labor leader Yacimovich asks not to be called a 'lefty' and shows hospitable face to the settlers, while Yair Lapid rejects compromising on the issue of Jerusalem. The heads of the two leading parties to the left of Netanyahu have made statements on the Palestinian issue this past week which place them very close to the prime minister. Yair Lapid, leader of the newly formed Yesh Atid party, declared that it is possible to keep all of Jerusalem in Israeli hands, if and when a Palestinian state is formed. Shelly Yacimovich of Labor gave an interview to the settler website…Read More... | 6 Comments
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- MOST READMOST COMMENTED24 HOURS|WEEK|MONTH
'Wars on Gaza have become part of Israel's system of governance': An interview with filmmaker Yotam Feldman http://t.co/7dMiksBo9t
Israel officially drank the Kool Aid on the al-Dura affair http://t.co/MF3x14NKe4
On visiting the victims of occupation in the south Hebron Hills http://t.co/YO37AXd75k by @MairavZ (via @haaretzcom)
Court questions law enabling confiscation of Palestinian land in Jerusalem http://t.co/4oGUPJYILt
Israel's A-G laments: Nobody criminally investigates settlers for illegal building http://t.co/O6zmeYz8M1
On the al-Dura affair: Israel officially drank the Kool Aid http://t.co/MF3x14NKe4 (By Larry Derfner)
#Israel Extends Zone for Fishing Off #Gaza http://t.co/aQkRdGvs60 via @nytimes