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  • Would pre-state Zionist militias be terrorists by today's standards?

    A Zionist Union MK gets heat for saying not all Palestinians who use violence against Israeli soldiers are terrorists. Can attacks against uniformed soldiers be considered terrorism? By Tomer Persico Labor MK Zohair Bahloul in recent days raised the ire of Israeli politicians from across the political spectrum, including members of his own party, for his unwillingness to label Palestinians who attack Israeli soldiers "terrorists." Explaining why he opposes applying the word terrorist to all Palestinians who employ violence, Bahloul brought up the example of the pre-state militias that took up arms against the British Mandate government. "The Etzel (Irgun),…

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  • The duality of Israel's occupation, at home and abroad

    Slowly but surely, the process of shedding democratic characteristics in favor of 'ethnocratic' ones is becoming clearer and clearer for all to see. By Tomer Persico (translated by Maya Haber) Over the last few weeks we have heard about the collapse of the delicate duality the Israeli government has been trying to preserve for years. It is the duality of occupation at home and democracy for abroad, religious coercion at home and a booming high-tech industry abroad, the stabbing at Jerusalem's pride parade and pinkwashing abroad. It is a strategic duality. It allows Israel to play a part in the…

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  • The collapse of Oslo should be a source of hope, not despair

    It is a bitter irony that Israelis and Palestinians came into more frequent contact prior to the peace process. The Labor party's new 'separation plan' does nothing to correct that. By Nadia Naser-Najjab Israel’s Labor Party recently passed its own plan to deal with the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Unfortunately, instead of coming up with a plan that will allow Israelis and Palestinians to work together on building a better future, Labor chairman and opposition leader Issac Herzog appealed to the principle of separation by building more walls and preventing Palestinians from truly establishing their state. [tmwinpost] Under happier circumstances, separation can conceivably…

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  • The Israeli Left needs to step up its game

    Herzog's new diplomatic plan goes against the real interests of all those who live between the river and the sea — Jews and Arabs alike. Now it's up to the Left to come up with a new vision based on real coexistence.  The Labor Party committee decided last week that it was officially parting with the two-state solution. The decision was not preceded by passionate discussions, nor was it extensively covered by the media. Had Prime Minister Netanyahu and Labor Chairman Isaac Herzog not traded barbs a few days later, I highly doubt anyone would have noticed. Even more than…

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  • Why Herzog's diplomatic plan looks an awful lot like apartheid

    Looking closely at Labor's plan, the logic behind it becomes clear: since it is difficult to envision a Palestinian state in the foreseeable future, Israel should no longer be ashamed of putting Palestinians in Bantustans. By Neve Gordon On Sunday night, Israel's Labor Party unanimously approved their leader's diplomatic plan. [tmwinpost] Labor's premier Isaac Herzog laid out his vision a few weeks earlier at the Institute for National Security Studies in Tel Aviv, telling the audience that he “wish[es] to separate from as many Palestinians as possible, as quickly as possible.” Herzog continued by explaining that “we’ll erect a big…

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  • Plenty of talk about 'peace,' little commitment

    When leaders from center-left aren't willing to deepen the struggle against the occupation, it's hard not to feel that they, too, prefer the status quo. Notes from the Haaretz Conference for Peace. The most genuine moments at Thursday's Haaretz Conference on Peace came from two right-wing speakers — Yariv Levin and Ze'ev Elkin, both ministers in Netanyahu's government — who unequivocally called the two state-solution a "hallucination," which they have no plans of ever implementing. Since neither of them have any intention of granting citizenship to Palestinians under occupation, they view the current situation as the solution. Around the same…

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  • The side of Rabin's legacy Israelis love to forget

    Over 20 years later, the mutual recognition between Israel and the PLO teaches us one thing: despite the hatred, we have no choice but to live together. From year to year, the memory of Yitzhak Rabin goes from a political issue to a nostalgic one. Twenty years after his assassination, the Israeli public is inundated with memories of Rabin the IDF chief of staff, Rabin the smoker, Rabin the straight-talker, etc. The films and articles memorializing him usually obscure (and often do not even include) one specific image: Rabin shaking hands with Yasser Arafat on the White House lawn in…

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  • It's time for the Israeli Left to part with the kibbutz

    Between unequal distribution of municipal taxes that discriminate against development towns and admittance committees that bar entry to those who do not belong to the 'white tribe,' the Left must lead the struggle against the kibbutz's sectorial policies.  By Elad Wolf Since the founding of the state, the kibbutzim have undergone a process of privatization. From their socialist infrastructure, the kibbutzim and the moshavim have turned into the enemies of equality and solidarity. Perhaps the time has come for the Left to move forward and release its hold on the kibbutzim. [tmwinpost] The biggest question one must ask is what…

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  • Where have Israel's leftists gone? The changing face of Labor

    The Labor party is convinced that it can somehow disassociate itself with the Left, call itself the ‘center’ and sneak its way back into power with semantic tricks. It will take the entire left-wing camp down with it. By Tom Cohen Last year, a delegation of Knesset members went to visit PLO Chairman Mahmoud Abbas. Among the MKs who participated were Hilik Bar of Labor and Tamar Zandberg of Meretz. There had been a terror attack a few days earlier and there was some pressure to cancel the visit. But MK Bar, who was the head of the Knesset’s Two-State…

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  • The death penalty is making a comeback in Israel

    By sentencing Palestinians convicted of murder to death, the Israeli Right will only bring the mutual cruelty between Jews and Palestinians to another level.  No one really wants to look back and learn anything from history. Every colonial regime convinces itself at some point to raise the level of brutality in order to force the natives to accept their situation. It seems like this is the path we must also take. [tmwinpost] Avigdor Liberman's party is promoting an initiative that would allow military tribunals to sentence terrorists who were convicted of murder to death. Naftali Bennett's Jewish Home party already announced…

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  • Zionist Camp celebration foiled by election results

    The election tie between Likud and Herzog's Zionist Camp came as a shock to supporters who had gathered in Tel Aviv. Almost defiantly, they followed what became the night's mantra: Nothing is decided yet. We haven't lost. By Angela Gruber First, there was a party. When the results of the exit polls kept rolling in, the supporters of the Zionist Union at the Convention Center in the north of Tel Aviv waved their flags, chanted slogans and started jumping. For a moment, it seemed like the actual results didn't matter that much. Then it started to sink in. There was…

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  • The violent roots of Israel's Labor party

    The Labor party's glory days included the Nakba, conquering and settling the West Bank and East Jerusalem and other affairs Israeli society has yet to begin processing. By Tom Pessah Senior Labor MK Shelly Yachimovich published the following status on her personal Facebook page a few weeks ago: “Hi this is Shelly. Spot the differences: education minister and member of the diplomatic-security cabinet Yigal Allon moves apartments.” [tmwinpost] In an attempt to criticize Prime Minister Netanyahu's lavish expenditures, Yachimovich, number three on the Zionist Camp list, uploaded a photo of a letter written by Yigal Allon — one of Israel's revered military…

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  • Herzog must support the Joint List — and vice versa

    Before the 1992 election, Rabin apologized for the discrimination against Palestinian citizens, thus paving the way for a 'golden age' in relations between the Arabs and the state. Twenty years later, the 'Zionist Camp' and the Joint List can stand to learn a thing or two. By Ron Gerlitz and Nidal Othman (translated by Richard Flantz) The Labor Party’s recommendation to disqualify the candidacy of Haneen Zoabi MK was cynical and illegitimate from a democratic perspective, and awful from a political perspective. This move was joined by the militaristic video released by Labor last week. The last thing Herzog needed…

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