Netanyahu is pushing a new bill to allow the force-feeding of Palestinian hunger strikers. The prime minister is in good company. American practices at the prison at Guantanamo Bay are giving Benjamin Netanyahu ideas. Earlier this week, a draft bill authorizing the force-feeding of hunger-striking Palestinian prisoners passed the first of three readings in the Knesset. Of the roughly 300 prisoners presently fasting in protest of Israeli administrative detention, at least 70 are hospitalized around the country, shackled to their beds. If the bill becomes law, dozens of them may be forced to undergo the procedure. Netanyahu is personally pressing…Read More... | 26 Comments
Can Israel help the United States treat hunger striking detainees at Guantanamo Bay more humanely? Probably. But one lesson that may be lost on the U.S. is that Palestinian hunger strikes in Israel have - for the most - part been successful. When nearly 200 people were rushed to Boston hospitals after the marathon bombing earlier this year, doctors were prepared because of an Israeli disaster management training they had received years earlier. When a building collapsed in Nairobi in 2006, Israeli army search and rescue teams flew in and freed trapped survivors. Disaster medicine is the one of the few fields in…Read More... | 7 Comments
This week: A hunger striker bakes bread, African immigrants celebrate refugee rights, LGBT activists take to the streets around the world, price tag attacks hit Palestinian East Jerusalem, weekly West Bank demonstrations continue, an eviction is avoided, and privatization protests spread to Jerusalem.Read More...
Members of Activestills posted a public street exhibition on the streets of West Jerusalem and Tel Aviv of photos that bring attention to Palestinian Prisoners Day. Photos by: Ahmad Al-Bazz, Shiraz Grinbaum, Keren Manor, Anne Paq, Ryan Rodrick Beiler, Yotam Ronen, and Oren Ziv The following text, in Hebrew, accompanied street exhibitions of the photos from this essay which were posted in public places in West Jerusalem and Tel Aviv the night before Palestinian Prisoners Day, April 17, 2013. Images of the street exhibitions, some of them later defaced, follow below: April 17 commemorates Palestinian Prisoners' Day. As of February 2013,…Read More... | 23 Comments
Threat of Palestinian Authority's collapse forces Netanyahu, who has humiliated Abbas and his people as often as possible, to try to placate them. At the beginning of this week, when Palestinian riots threatened to get out of hand, especially if one of the hunger-striking prisoners died, what did Netanyahu do? He gave in. He announced on Sunday he was giving the Palestinian Authority its customs taxes for January, which he'd held back to punish Mahmoud Abbas for winning recognition for Palestinian statehood at the UN last November. Palestinians throw stones and Molotov cocktails at Israeli soldiers, PA security troops do…Read More... | 7 Comments
A fateful moment awaits as Israel is forced to choose how it will handle the Palestinian prisoner revolt. In the next few days, something momentous will occur. A group of Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike for over 60 days will either be released from incarceration in Israeli prison without charge or trial, or they will likely die. And it will not end there, either. Many more have followed them down this perilous road of life, death and principle. In fact, thousands more. Two Palestinians—Khader Adnan and Hana Shalabi—have already crossed the finish line, securing their release from prison—through deals cut…Read More... | 39 Comments
A movement of Palestinian prisoners protesting their incarceration and treatment inside Israeli prisons is continuing to reach momentous proportions. Billed the “War of Empty Stomachs,” the number of prisoners on hunger strike is now in the thousands. On April 17, the prisoner movement split into two when between 1,200 and 1,600 prisoners launched a coordinated, open-ended hunger strike against their treatment inside Israeli prisons, including the pervasive use of solitary confinement, denied family visits and right to education. Another 2,000 joined in a limited solidarity hunger strike. The prisoners had joined a group of hunger strikes launched independently by prisoners…Read More...
3,500 Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails fasted today as part of a growing protest against conditions in prison. 1,200 declared they will continue fasting, joining several administrative detainees on hunger strike; Thousands demonstrated throughout the West Bank and Gaza; Administrative detainee Khader Adnan, who went on a 66-day hunger strike, was released. Palestinian Prisoners' Day was commemorated today in the occupied territories and Israeli prisons in a fashion far more intensive than in previous years. More than two thirds of the 4,635 prisoners held by Israel (of whom 320 are administrative detainees and 183 are minors) returned their meals today,…Read More... | 5 Comments
Palestinian administrative detainee Hana Shalabi is now on the 22nd day of her hunger strike, protesting her treatment during her arrest and over the course of her detention. Three court rulings from recent days may mark a shift in the system's attitude towards her, following the Khader Adnan case. Lawyers from the Palestinian prisoner rights group Addameer report that Shalabi's physical condition is deteriorating. After more than three weeks of no food and very little water, Shalabi is beginning to experience pain in her chest and waist, suffers from nausea and dizziness, and is having a hard time talking without…Read More... | 15 Comments
Hana Shalabi, a Palestinian woman currently being held in administrative detention by Israel, entered the 15th day of her hunger strike today in protest of the maltreatment she suffered during her arrest. Her elderly parents and two Palestinian prisoners have joined her hunger strike. According to Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association, Israeli authorities detained Shalabi, from the village of Burqin near Jenin, on February 16. She was allegedly beaten during her arrest—as was her brother when he tried to stop an Israeli soldier from hitting her—and began the hunger strike on the same day in protest. Shalabi was released…Read More... | 1 Comment
The Khader Adnan hunger strike affair showed the true face of all of the Israelis involved in the occupation, from its enablers in the courts to the Israeli mob. Khader Adnan became a Palestinian national hero two days ago, and rightly so. He brought the Netanyahu government, as well as the Israeli apparatus of darkness (as Uri Avneri called it in the 1950s) to its knees. In a hastily-convened hearing in the High Court of Justice (HCJ), the prosecution offered Adnan’s lawyers a classic saving-face deal: Adnan will be discharged on April 17 at the latest, the same day his administrative detention…Read More... | 33 Comments
As Khader Adnan's case took over the news cycle this week, I noticed comments by thoughtful readers, generally on my Facebook feed, pointing out Adnan's association with terror. They have circulated a video in which Adnan asks who the next suicide bomber will be, pointed to his affiliation with Islamic Jihad, and asked: How can you root for a terrorist? How can supposed progressives like us rally around him? (I would have posted the video but YouTube has blocked it in recent hours, claiming it violates its content standards. Note: Adnan does not make an explicit call for suicide bombing in the…Read More... | 24 Comments
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