Analysis News

Oslo accords

  • Searching for a genuine anti-apartheid struggle in Israel/Palestine

    While Palestinians and their leaders historically took their cues from anti-colonial resistance in Vietnam, Cuba and Algeria, their struggle has, over time, become similar to the fight against apartheid in South Africa. With the failure of the Oslo Accords, new, often overlapping approaches have proliferated, leading Ran Greenstein to find out what a genuine anti-apartheid model would look like in our time. By Ran Greenstein How can we define and understand the essence of the struggle against political oppression in Israel/Palestine? On the face of it the answer is simple: the target is the Israeli regime and its practices. But, is…

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  • Israel 2013: Netanyahu preaches the lessons of Rabin's murder

    And nobody objects. I was listening on the radio to the prime minister's speech in the Knesset on Wednesday for the 18th anniversary (on the Hebrew calendar) of the Rabin assassination, and it just struck me how far we’ve come in this country. Bibi Netanyahu is now preaching to Israel the lessons of Rabin's murder. And nobody says anything. Members of the Rabin family sitting in the Knesset, whatever they were thinking, didn’t say a word. Neither did the MKs of the Labor Party or Meretz, or MK Ahmed Tibi or anybody else who lived through that time and understands…

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  • Sephardic spiritual leader Rabbi Ovadia Yosef passes away at 93

    Former Sephardic chief rabbi and spiritual leader of Shas was known for efforts to reconcile Jewish law with modernity, advance the status of Mizrahi Jews in the Israeli religious establishment and in Israeli politics and society. Rabbi Ovadia Yosef, the spiritual leader of the Sephardic-Haredi Shas party passed away Monday at the age of 93. Yosef recently suffered from a series of health problems, specifically with his heart and lungs. He was hospitalized several times in the last month. Yosef was a complex and not always well understood figure. He was know for his groundbreaking rulings which tried to incorporate…

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  • Israel’s ultra-Orthodox: Unorthodox partners for peace?

    History has shown that the longer the ultra-Orthodox are excluded from the Israeli coalition, the more likely are the chances that they forge alliances with left-of-centre and dovish partners. Could the Haredi parties be the ones to tip the balance in favor of a peace agreement? By Romana Michelon As of late July, the Israeli-Palestinian peace process is once again making global headlines. Largely the result of the diplomatic efforts made by US Secretary of State, John Kerry, this is the first time since 2010 that chief negotiators representing Israel and the Palestinian Authority confront one another in direct, albeit…

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  • The economics of Oslo, 20 years later: A snapshot

    There is much to say about the justness (or unjustness) of the Oslo process, specifically the economic and human impact it has had over the last two decades in Israel and Palestine. What follows is a snapshot. By A. Daniel Roth Twenty years ago this week Yitzhak Rabin and Yasser Arafat signed the historic Oslo Accords. A few months later, in the spring of 1994, the Paris Protocol - the blueprint that would define the economic relationship between the Palestinians and Israelis for the next two decades - was signed. Continued violence and events such as the assassination of Prime…

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  • The festering legacy of Oslo: Jerusalem as 'indivisible' as ever

    “We have a real problem. There is no physical separation and the level of hostility is very high.” This is what a Jewish Israeli member of the board of the French Hill Community Council told Haaretz's Nir Hasson, referring to tensions between his Jewish neighborhood in occupied East Jerusalem, and the adjacent Palestinian neighborhood of Issawiya. Such tensions led the Jerusalem Municipality to dig a ditch this week between the two. Issawiya is at the foot of French Hill, down the road from the Hebrew University just east of the Green Line, with a population of about 17,000. French Hill was…

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  • Oslo 20 years later: The origins and dangers of 'security zones'

    How Israel succeeded in diluting the implementation of the Oslo Accords through a combination of hypothetical worst-case military scenarios and the misleading and incorrect attribution of the term 'security zones' to diplomatic texts. By Shemuel Meir Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu regularly declares that in any agreement with the Palestinians, "security zones" – code for large settlement blocs and the "Jordan Valley" – will remain under Israeli sovereignty. But what is the origin of "security zones," which repeatedly appear in the discourse of Israeli decision makers? The following is an analysis of "security zones" and the stories that we tell ourselves. The main…

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  • What went wrong? Learning from the mistakes of Oslo

    Can Israeli, Palestinian and American negotiators learn from their mistakes in order to bring about a peaceful resolution to the conflict? New negotiations offer hope like a quarter-drop of water splashed onto scorched and desiccated earth. How quickly such a drop can be absorbed as if it never was, and ground into the dust by the overwhelming forces of failure. Once, hope went beyond a drop: in 1993, the Oslo Accords were a shining symbol of progress. After years of despair and death, it has become synonymous with failure for many. Yet it is the only model for agreements actually…

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  • Goodbye boycott: The cost of Kerry's 'breakthrough,' part 2

    The tactic of punishing Israel for the occupation was finally beginning to take a psychological toll - then the U.S. secretary of state rode to the rescue. The Palestinian Authority was planning to go to the UN in September, in line with the 20th anniversary of the failed Oslo Accords, and begin the process of taking Israel to The Hague over the occupation. Israel was scared, with good reason. But now that fear has lifted. Assuming that the preliminary Israeli-Palestinian talks in Washington lead to full-blown peace negotiations, which is a safe assumption – the Palestinians aren’t going to walk…

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  • Why does the IDF hold Gazan fishermen responsible for rocket launching?

    The IDF will allow Gaza fishermen to go beyond three-mile zone previously imposed on them and up to six miles into the Mediterranean Sea, it announced on Tuesday. Under the Oslo Accords, Gaza's maritime boundaries stretch 20 nautical miles from shore. However, as a part of its blockade policy, Israel does not allow fishermen to travel beyond a narrow strip of three to six miles - an area which changes at the discretion of the government and defense minister. The Gaza strip is one of the most densely populated areas in the world (see map below) and fishing constitutes an important source of food…

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  • Exhibition on loan: How Israel's cultural institutions contribute to occupation

    Even if bringing the Herodium exhibit to the Israel Museum is not identical to wielding physical violence against Palestinians, it seems that in everything that pertains to the West Bank, those in charge exploit resources for their own needs, be it for exhibition or settlement expansion.  By Yonatan Mizrachi The exhibition “Herod the Great – The King’s Final Journey” is the largest archaeological exhibit ever showcased at the Israel Museum. In order to stage the exhibit, 30 tons of archaeological findings were transferred from the sites at Herodium and Jericho. The tremendous investment led to a successful portrayal of the…

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  • Tzipi Livni throws cold water on prospects for peace

    With Israel and Palestine no closer to a peaceful two-state resolution 20 years after the start of Oslo, the burden of proof is on its believers, not its detractors, settler leader Dany Dayan says. Even the woman set to be in charge of any future peace process, Tzipi Livni, is speaking about the need to formulate backup plans. Tzipi Livni, the only person in the soon-to-be-formed Israeli government who genuinely believes in the importance of the two-state peace process, splashed cold water on the prospect of it ever happening Tuesday. It’s time to start looking at alternative plans in case…

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  • The Ramallah bubble: Prosperity under occupation?

    By Lia Tarachansky and Max Blumenthal From street level in downtown Ramallah the economy seems to be thriving. Gleaming storefronts display an array of brand-name products, American fast food restaurants are sprouting up and the city is host to a bustling nightlife that could rival Tel Aviv. For years Israeli officials have pointed to economic growth in the West Bank, arguing the occupation is not as detrimental as many argue. Israeli Public Diplomacy and Diaspora Affairs Minister Yuli Edelstein and Eitan Dogat, head of the branch of the Israeli government in charge of the occupation (COGAT), have quoted figures showing…

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