The founder of IDF watchdog group Breaking the Silence (BTS), Yehuda Shaul, was detained in Hebron on Tuesday as he was leading a tour in the Jewish settlement located in the heart of the city. According to the organization's spokesperson, Avner Gvaryahu, Shaul was confronted by an IDF company commander, who prevented him from continuing on his way, despite the fact that the area is considered public space and that Jewish groups use those streets frequently. Shaul was detained after arguing with the officer. Shaul, who was released from the Hebron police station later that night, was banned from the…Read More... | 1 Comment
Last Wedensday, 17-year-old Muhammad Ziad Awad Salaymah was killed at an IDF checkpoint in Hebron. The army claimed that the young Palestinian drew a fake gun on one of the soldiers, leaving a border policewoman who was near the scene no choice but to shoot him. The Salaymah family said that Muhammad was on his way to a candy store to by a cake for his birthday. Until now, the army refused to release the footage captured by a security camera which monitors the checkpoint. Today, this clip was posted on the IDF's Arabic channel. It is hard to tell what's going on…Read More... | 46 Comments
President Obama's record on the Palestinian issue is so bad that the winner of the upcoming elections is irrelevant. Four years ago, I traveled to the United States to cover the Democratic and Republican conventions. It was an inspiring experience, largely due to the unique feelings that accompanied the candidacy of (now) president Obama. Judging from afar, it seems that much of this excitement is gone, and the current elections are a frustrating and rather cynical experience. Still, if I were an American living in the U.S., I probably would have voted for President Obama for many reasons – from…Read More... | 23 Comments
Today, June 5, Israel marks a double anniversary: 45 years since the Six-Day War and 30 years since the first Lebanon War. The name of the latter is misleading – the war took place in Lebanon, but it was yet another attempt to solve our "Palestinian problem" by force. Israel conquered most of its neighbor to the north (including the capital), installed a puppet leader as president, and forced the PLO to sail all the way to Tunis. But the plan failed. Five years later, a popular unarmed revolt broke out in Gaza and spread to the West Bank. A…Read More... | 49 Comments
Last week I posted videos taken by the spokesperson of B'Tselem, Sarit Michaeli, showing a confrontation between settlers and Palestinians near the village of Urif, in the Nablus region. You can see in the videos settlers setting fire to a Palestinian olive grove, and hear gunshots. A third clip shows a wounded Palestinian being evacuated from the area (see the report and watch the videos here). At the time, Michaeli told me that local Palestinians also said that the wounded man was beaten - after he was shot - by the settlers. There was no footage backing this claim. Tonight…Read More... | 19 Comments
The isolation of J Street and other Jewish groups that are critical of Israeli policies is evidence of a growing moral crisis in the American Jewish community This post was updated. A couple of years ago, while spending some time in the States, I was invited to a dinner at a Jewish friend's home. "Just one thing," my friend, a smart liberal lefty, said. "Don't mention Israel by the table. The inevitable argument will ruin the evening." This, and a few similar experiences, led me to offer my editors in Haaretz a story about the Jewish community's "Israel problem," i.e.,…Read More... | 12 Comments
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The Iran Deal
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