From the Qibya massacre, to Sabra and Shatila and the dirty tricks, lies and deceptions that made the West Bank settlements what they are today, Ariel Sharon has caused unimaginable damage to Israel, its army, morality, and political life. (Translated by Sol Salbe) On Saturday night, as soon as Ariel Sharon's death became known, our hyperactive education minister, Shai Piron, rushed to announce that teachers would devote part of the following day's lesson to Sharon's legacy. These classes would be based on prepared outlines which were supposed to be distributed in the morning. You can get a really good idea of what…Read More... | 18 Comments
Israel's former prime minister Ariel Sharon, who spent the last eight years comatose after a series of strokes, died on Saturday, January 11. He was 85 years old. A general, politician, statesman, and to many a notorious war criminal, Ariel Sharon was known to combine dogged personal ambition with strategic acumen and ruthlessness, which together shaped one of the most controversial and remarkable careers in Israeli political history. Born in the community of Kfar Malal in 1928, Sharon joined the Haganah in the mid 1940s, and first saw action in the run-up to the 1948 War, when his unit staged…Read More... | 11 Comments
By: Shiraz Grinbaum/Activestills & Physicians For Human Rights-Israel, special thanks to Hiba Amara One of the fundamental rights to which a citizen is entitled is the right to marry and build a family in her or his own state. In practice, any person who marries an Israeli citizen is entitled to begin a procedure that will eventually lead to their recognition as a resident or a citizen of the state. This right was honored, in general, until just over a decade ago. In May 2002, at the height of the Second Intifada, the Israeli government decided to freeze this procedure for…Read More... | 6 Comments
The continued discussion of the almost 13-year-old Al-Dura affair reflects the current Israeli government's inability to conduct serious and impartial investigations into violations of Palestinian rights. By Brad Parker On Wednesday, Philippe Karsenty, a French media analyst, was convicted of defamation for accusing a French television network of orchestrating video footage of the famous shooting of 12-year-old Mohammad al-Dura in Gaza during September 2000. Over the past 13 years, the shooting has been at the center of Israeli nationalist sentiments of victimization, whether by the media, the international community or anyone else that criticizes Israeli policies toward Palestinians. While the verdict may do…Read More... | 22 Comments
A look at the right-wing conspiracy-nut thinking that informed this week's blue-ribbon report on the infamous 2000 killing of a Palestinian boy in Gaza. In the 13 years since Muhammad al-Dura was killed in an Israeli-Palestinian shootout in Gaza while cowering behind his father, masses of right-wing Jews have eagerly embraced a conspiracy theory of the 12-year-oid boy’s killing – that it was staged, a hoax perpetrated by Palestinians to blacken Israel’s name. This theory, promoted most avidly by Boston University Prof. Richard Landes and French media analyst Philippe Karsenty, depends on a view of Palestinians being superhumanly clever and fiendish,…Read More... | 43 Comments
The outpost of Derekh Avot, sitting on stolen Palestinian land, will soon be whitewashed and its lands will magically turn into 'state lands' which will be delivered to the settlers. By Yesh Din, written by Yossi Gurvitz A letter from the Officer of the Legal Advisor of the Commander, Judea and Samaria Area – the name the IDF attached to the West Bank - arrived recently at Yesh Din's offices. The letter said that soon, the Custodian of Government Property intends to announce the lands on which the outpost of Derekh Avot is located as Public Lands (commonly known as…Read More... | 39 Comments
With Tzipi Livni joining Netanyahu’s government and President Obama heading to the region, we might be in for another round of a pseudo-'peace process,' which has become a code name for an attempt to impose 'a deal' on a Palestinian pseudo-leadership. Hatnuah – Tzipi Livni’s new party that won six seats in the last Israeli elections – was the first Knesset party to sign a coalition agreement with Binyamin Netanyahu. Netanyahu needs another 24 Knesset members to have the minimum majority for a ruling coalition. It is very unlikely that he will fail to get them. Livni was appointed as…Read More... | 23 Comments
We have very few role models in the Israeli Left – few that we can follow their footsteps, few torches to light a dark and lonely path, few lights to pave the way. Aki was one of those, and now with him gone, the road seems a little darker. By Leehee Rothschild I’ve been sitting and staring at this photo for the past few minutes, trying to put together some words to go along with it. The sentence that keeps repeating in my mind is “This is exactly how I felt when Tanya [Reinhart] died.” I suppose it is quite an…Read More... | 10 Comments
Israeli intentions to build in E1 have both the material and the symbolic significant that could turn into a trigger for a new uprising. It's time for a new path. By Jamie Levin and Craig D. Smith A good number of pundits have recently heralded the demise of the two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The culprit, they argue, is Netanyahu’s proposed settlement expansion in the area unceremoniously dubbed E1. While there seems to be consensus on a terminal prognosis for a Palestinian state, few have investigated what this will mean for the future of the Israeli-Palestinian relationship, which will…Read More... | 28 Comments
The verdict on the 2003 killing of Rachel Corrie absolved Israel of any wrongdoing, essentially blaming the victim for her death. The trial revealed Israel's approach to the most fundamental principles of international law, and especially to the duty to protect non-combatants. By Jeff Halper For those who hoped for a just verdict on the death of Rachel Corrie, the American student and ISM activist killed by an Israeli bulldozer in Gaza in 2003 as she was defending a Palestinian home about to be demolished, this is a sad day. Not surprising, but still sad and bitter. The judge who…Read More... | 30 Comments
I went for a walk along the shore yesterday evening, just shy of a stunning sunset. Late-Friday afternoons are essential to understanding Israel, and Tel Aviv in particular; there is a shared serenity that lulls the residents. Everyone can share in the calm and natural beauty of the sea: it's free. ******* As I walked south towards Jaffa, a girl was handing out flyers. Something about her seemed a little apologetic, or perhaps almost hopeful. On impulse, I took the flyer and walked on, preparing to stuff it into my pocket after I had passed her. In those paces, I…Read More... | 40 Comments
Nearly 12 years later, the most indelible incident of the Second Intifada - in which Muhammad al Dura died in his father's arms - is rehashed on the pages of the Huffington Post in an article that whitewashes the facts for the sake of saving Israel from bad publicity. By Rechavia Berman Something strange is going on over at The Huffington Post. The quasi-liberal answer to sites like Town Hall and Little Green Footballs ran a piece this week by an Israeli writer, Lilac Sigan, who pretended to give her readers a lesson in critical thinking and strict adherence to…Read More... | 3 Comments
Marwan Barghouti remains a hated figure in Israel for his involvement in terrorist activities during the second Intifada. However, his place as a national leader of the Palestinian people is unquestioned in the West Bank and Gaza. For this reason, Israelis will likely be seeing Barghouti on the other end of a negotiating table after his inevitable release from prison. In a new book, smuggled out of jail page by page, Barghouti details his life behind bars in Israeli prisons. I have written a feature story about Barghouti's new book, his current position inside Palestinian politics and where the campaign to free him is…Read More... | 11 Comments
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On the challenges facing a growing population of asylum seekers and refugees in Israel.
Kerry's peace process
Full coverage, commentary and analysis of the latest round of peace talks.
Plan to displace Bedouin
Will tens of thousands of Israeli citizens be evicted from their homes?
A series of striking infographics.
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