To pretend as though the events of recent days are extraordinary is to ignore the context that led to this ‘flare-up’ and is disrespectful to the millions of Palestinians who wrestle with the occupation every day, in both the West Bank and in Gaza. It’s Wednesday. The death toll in Gaza is in the dozens and rising as Layla*, a Christian Palestinian, gets into my car. We live in Bethelehem. She needs a ride to pick up her tasrich (permit) from the Civil Administration’s office in Gush Etzion, where Israel and the Western media claim that the current “flare-up” began.…Read More... | 21 Comments
Providing context may be taboo at a time when the entire country is focused on the fate of three kidnapped Israeli teens, but it is part and parcel of the story. Since news broke Friday of the alleged kidnapping of three Israeli teenagers who study in a West Bank yeshiva north of Hebron the night before, media outlets and social media users have been gripping at straws to publicize new information on what has quickly become a national tragedy dominating Israel's public discourse. The kidnapping and reactions to it, however, cannot be viewed in a vacuum. The Israel Defense Forces…Read More... | 52 Comments
This week: Hammering away at the wall, refugees march for return, Palestinians form a unity government, Gazan youth wave at the border, Palestinians burn tires, protests in solidarity with hunger-striking prisoners, protests against the occupation, and assessing the damage to private Palestinian land.Read More... | 2 Comments
When discussing administrative detention with Israelis, there comes a point when the discussion becomes an argument like one about religion -- based on blind faith in the security establishment. By definition, administrative detainees have not committed a crime. An administrative detention order is issued against people (almost all of whom are Palestinians) against whom there is no evidentiary basis to be put on trial. None at all. Because there is no evidence, there is also no indictment, no trial, no opportunity for the detainee to dispute the charges against him, no conviction and no verdict or sentencing to determine the…Read More... | 46 Comments
Rather than arguing over the 'gestures' of releasing long-term prisoners, Israel must use restraint during arrests in the West Bank, while ensuring fair and swift procedures in the military courts. (Translated by Ofer Neiman) One of the main factors behind the failure of the recent round of Israeli-Palestinian talks was Israel's decision to cancel the release of 26 Palestinian prisoners, which had been agreed upon as a goodwill gesture to the Palestinian Authority. The issue of prisoner release, whether in the framework of negotiations or in the framework of prisoner exchange deals, touches on very strong sentiments on both sides. For…Read More... | 8 Comments
Strikers claim Israel reneged on a 2012 agreement to limit the use of administrative detention, a legal tool under which they are all being held, Palestinian rights group says. Over 100 Palestinian administrative detainees have started a hunger strike in Israeli prisons, Palestinian prisoner support and human rights group Addameer reported on Thursday. The strike comes in the context of an agreement that Israel made to end a previous mass hunger strike in 2012, in which it agreed to limit its use of administrative detention, according to Addameer. The prisoners say that Israel has reneged on that agreement. At the…Read More...
To mark International Palestinian Prisoners' Day, which has been commemorated annually by Palestinians worldwide since 1974, Activestills brings you a look into the lives of Palestinian prisoners and their supporters struggling to obtain freedom. According to Addameer, a Palestinian prisoner support organization, there are currently 5,224 Palestinian men and women held in Israeli prisons. These include 183 administrative detainees; 210 children; 21 female prisoners; and 11 members of the Palestinian Legislative Council. Since the occupation of the West Bank, East Jerusalem, and the Gaza Strip began in 1967, more than 700,000 Palestinians have been imprisoned by Israel. To this day, dozens…Read More... | 1 Comment
New feature: A selection of Larry Derfner’s sociopolitical outbursts on Facebook for the week ending Saturday, April 12. THE GREAT COLBERT As he moves into the mainstream of the mainstream (taking over the David Letterman show), a reminder of Stephen Colbert’s unforgettable roast of George W. Bush (and the press) at the 2006 White House Correspondents Dinner (FB status, April 12): This is to the Bush years what Edward R. Murrow's famous TV takedown was to the McCarthy era. In 2006 it was finally sinking in on America that Bush and his wars were a disaster, and that the press had…Read More...
I teach writing at a Palestinian university in the West Bank. Several of my students have been gracious enough to share their experiences with +972, albeit anonymously. This is the first of four short essays. It was a sunny day. I woke up at six o'clock to get ready for my new life because it day was a big day; it was my first day of college, so I was super excited and nervous at the same time. I wore my new clothes and asked mom for her blessing. When I arrived at the college I took some lectures and…Read More... | 11 Comments
That’s the long and short of this latest ‘crisis’ in the peace talks. This couldn’t be more black-and white, more writ in bold, if Israel set off fireworks in the night sky that spelled out: “WE LIED.” Netanyahu and his government – including, very forthrightly, house “peacenik” Tzipi Livni – are reneging on their promise to free 26 Palestinian and Israeli Arab prisoners on Friday. The numbers, the names, the date of release were all agreed on between Prime Minister Netanyahu and President Abbas and overseen by Secretary of State Kerry when the current peace talks, such as they are,…Read More... | 80 Comments
Twenty-six Palestinian prisoners from Gaza, Jerusalem and the West Bank were released early Tuesday morning in the third stage of a prisoner release deal secured by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry to facilitate peace talks. A total of 104 Palestinian prisoners, all jailed before the start of the Oslo peace talks 20 years ago, are slated to be released during the course of the talks, which are scheduled to continue through mid-2014. By: Oren Ziv, Yotam Ronen, Tali Mayer, Ahmad Al-Bazz / Activestills.org Related: The real problem with the prisoner release PHOTOS: Right-wing Israelis protest Palestinian prisoner release…Read More...
Thousands gather in East Jerusalem neighborhood of Issawiya to welcome the now-iconic hunger striker home. Text by Michael Omer-Man Photos by Oren Ziv and Tali Mayer / Activestills.org Former hunger striking Palestinian prisoner Samer Issawi was released to his home in the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Issawiya Monday night, exactly eight months after he agreed to resume eating as part of a deal with Israeli authorities. Issawi staged an intermittent hunger strike for nearly nine months until April 23, 2013. Over 2,000 people awaited his release on the main road leading into Issawiya. Revelers carried him on their shoulders to…Read More... | 11 Comments
This week: Prisoner releases, house demolitions, weekly demonstrations, olive harvests, prayerful protests, and asylum seekers.Read More...
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Assault on Gaza
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How the IDF abdicates its monopoly on violence in the West Bank http://t.co/VAKYqWQsh6
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Resource: Coercing African asylum seekers to go home http://t.co/sKxoh1PaDy
In ruling on African asylum seekers, will Israel’s High Court be affected by recent @hrw report? http://t.co/FVgQPam5kj
High Court to rule on indefinite detention of African asylum seekers http://t.co/eRncRPt5xJ by @MikeOmerMan