Jews and Palestinians who commute from the West Bank to work in central Israel each day will soon ride separate buses home. Let’s not give too much credit to Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon, however. The decision to segregate the evening commute wasn’t all that creative. He only completed his predecessors' decision to segregate the morning commute. It’s not really segregation. Not on paper at least. Or at least the paper doesn’t use the word "segregation." In practice, however, people of one national origin will not be allowed to ride on the same bus lines as people of another national origin —…Read More... | 98 Comments
From up close, a wall can seem smooth, unbreakable and infinite – it is the only thing in sight. The wall, a wall of despair or a wall of separation, is real. But by taking a few steps back, either physically or spiritually, cracks in the wall can come into sight. By Moriel Rothman I’ve been in the U.S. for almost two weeks now, and I’ve begun to see cracks in the "Despair-Wall" that I wasn’t seeing – or wasn’t able to see – 14 days ago. When I boarded the plane departing from Ben Gurion International Airport, it was with feelings of darkness, of…Read More... | 4 Comments
Al-Jazeera's Inside Story covers the segregated bus debate and the question of apartheid in Israel. Al Jazeera's Mike Hanna is joined by Ben White, Mustafa Barghouti and Gregg Roman in what turns out to be probably the biggest shellacking of an Israeli spokesperson I have ever seen on a mainstream news network. To be fair, Roman does say some absurd things, such as: "Actually I do know what I am talking about because I worked side by side with Palestinians for three years while I was a member of the Civil Administration in Ramallah (note: Israel's occupation government in the…Read More... | 74 Comments
Yes, the suggestion to segregate buses is disgusting. But it shouldn’t overshadow the fact that, if we consider Israel/Palestine as one continuous territory under a system that privileges Jewish Israelis, there is already de facto bus segregation on the ground in occupied East Jerusalem and the West Bank. No, I’m not Palestinian. But I experience this segregation every day because I work at a Palestinian university in Area B. Every morning, I make the trip to East Jerusalem, where I head towards the “Palestinian buses.” Sure, there are Israeli buses that head into the West Bank, too. But they only…Read More... | 11 Comments
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