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Rafah

  • In escalations of violence, Gazans pay the price

    As Gaza teeters on the brink, a new Israeli offensive could spell catastrophe for the blockaded strip. One Gazan reminds us who foots the bill, each and every time. By Abeer Ayyoub “You don’t have to worry - it’s only thunder, not an explosion,” my sister assured me. We are trying to sleep for the fifth time tonight, after our slumber was repeatedly interrupted by the sound of Israeli rockets and thunder. After failing to distinguish between the two, we turn to local radio stations to find out what was actually happening. Winter is special everywhere, and Gaza is no…

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  • Palestinian and proud: Celebrating International Women's Day in Gaza

    In honor of International Women's Day, Abeer Ayyoub pays respect to her mother, who taught her that being a woman in Gaza is as much about liberation as it is about survival.  By Abeer Ayyoub Although March 8th has always marked International Woman's Day, this year was the first time I ever felt like it belonged to me as a Palestinian woman. Perhaps it is because I recently turned 25, or perhaps it is because of the awareness I have gained regarding my role as a Palestinian woman living in Gaza. Early on, I felt that I had to become…

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  • A year after 'Pillar of Defense,' the nightmare continues

    A year after 165 Palestinians and six Israelis were killed, political leaders have yet to conduct independent, impartial investigations into allegations of human rights violations. If neither side demonstrates the political will to protect all civilians, the cycle of violations will become a recurring nightmare. By Yonatan Gher On 21 November 2012, 13-year-old Mahmoud Abu Khousa was killed when he was struck by a missile fired by an Israeli drone as he walked to a shop down the road from his home in the al-Manara area of Gaza City. Delegates from Amnesty International's International Secretariat examined the site of the missile…

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  • Despite recent improvements, Israeli government can do more for Gazans

    The increases in movement of people and goods in and out of Gaza should serve as a reminder that Israel recognizes the need for civilian access, that the army can facilitate access when it is instructed to do so, and that more even more can be done. By Tania Hary The Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories, which, among other things, oversees what and who comes in and out of Gaza, recently published its monthly report for July. The numbers published in the report reveal that, given the closing of tunnels on the Gaza-Egypt border and a subsequent drop…

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  • With Egypt strike, Israel violates two borders in three days

    Two incidents in three days, in which Israel’s military was caught with its hand beyond its borders, raise questions of sovereignty and what it means to Israel. Sovereignty is a funny thing. Some countries claim more of it than they really have, some don’t have full control over their sovereign territory or airspace, and others willingly cede some of their sovereignty for a number of reasons. Two cases of Israel violating the sovereignty of its neighbors made headlines in the past few days. The first incident involved Israeli combat soldiers infiltrating Lebanon’s borders on Wednesday. Israeli violations of Lebanon’s airspace, maritime…

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  • WATCH: Play depicting Rachel Corrie causes controversy in Jerusalem

    My Name is Rachel Corrie, a play based on the diaries and emails of Rachel Corrie, is now showing in Jerusalem. The play tells the story of Corrie, a young American woman who traveled to the Gaza Strip during the Second Intifada, who was crushed to death by a bulldozer as she was trying to prevent the demolition of a Palestinian home. Although the play has received much praise, it has also caused a storm at the Khan Theater in Jerusalem. Jerusalem's Municipality even threatened to cut the Khan's budget should the play go on as planned, angering many actors.

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  • Helpless: Notes of a Gaza teacher

    One Gazan's war diary, November 14-21. By Ahmed G. Ferwana November 14 I wished my colleagues and students a nice weekend, and left the American International School of Gaza (AISG), where I work as a Language and Literature teacher, for my apartment on Al-Shuhada Street, which I consider to be one of the most beautiful streets in the Gaza Strip. It was a lovely Wednesday, to be followed by a three-day vacation, and I had plans to meet some friends for a barbeque. Then, time and date was all that mattered once I had that moment of silence as a…

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  • Photos: Gazans mourn victims of latest Israel strikes

    Text and photos by Anne Paq Five Palestinian civilians, including three children, have been killed by Israeli strikes on the Gaza Strip in the latest escalation of violence. Fifty-two others, including six women and 12 children, have been wounded, some of them very seriously. Four of these deaths and 38 of the injuries resulted from an Israeli attack in al-Shoja’iya neighborhood east of Gaza City, which the Israeli army said came in response to an attack on a military vehicle. An investigation by PCHR concluded that the first strike hit Palestinian children playing football. As people rushed to help them,…

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  • In Corrie ruling, court calls nonviolent activism 'practically violent'

    An Israeli judge claims activists who oppose house demolitions - and not those who demolish them - are the perpetrators of violence. The Israeli court system was, for a long time, the most successful fig leaf of the only Jewish state in the Middle East.  Now it has gone diving into the Hasbara morass. After "diplomatic terrorism" (opposing Israel in the world, a phrase favored by our foreign minister) and "economic terrorism" (boycotting settlements) we now have the District Court of Haifa blaming (Hebrew) the ISM organization of being  "practically violent," even though the court admits it had nothing to do with…

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  • Rachel Corrie verdict: Death under IDF bulldozer was an accident

    An Israeli judge ruled Tuesday morning that the State of Israel is not to blame for the death of Rachel Corrie, an American who was killed on March 16, 2003 in the Gaza Strip when she she stood in front of an IDF bulldozer that crushed her.  The judge called her death a "regrettable accident." Rachel Corrie was in Rafah as an activist with the International Solidarity Movement, acting as a human shield to protest the demolition of Palestinian homes. She was 23 years old at the time of her death. She had arrived in Israel in January 2003 and spent two…

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  • Lethal Sinai attack is connected to the Gaza blockade

    The lethal attack on an Egyptian military outpost, in an attempted incursion into Israel, is another reminder of the terrorist infrastructure in the Sinai Peninsula. This infrastructure was built in part on the basis of the Gaza-Egypt-Israel smuggling industry, which is fueled by the massive restrictions on movement and trade imposed on the Strip by Israel and Egypt. On Sunday evening, terrorists attacked an Egyptian military outpost in the Sinai Peninsula, near the Rafah and Kerem Shalom border crossings, connecting Egypt with the Gaza Strip and Israel respectively. Fifteen Egyptian soldiers were killed in the attack, in which assailants seized…

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