The controversy surrounding an unsuspecting high-school teacher who was denounced by one of his twelfth-grade students for allegedly expressing left-wing views in class escalated rapidly this week. Adam Verete, the teacher from Kiryat Tivon, has unwittingly been dubbed ‘Dreyfus of Tivon’; a routine meeting of the Knesset Education Committee became a heated argument over the issue, two hundred students demonstrated in Verete’s defense while the Education Minister maintains radio silence, garnering criticism, and the country’s top PR experts working for the ORT school system where Varete teaches stutters over basic questions. On Thursday, Haaretz published 'highlights' from a secret recording…Read More... | 23 Comments
By Naomi Paiss To some, the controversy over the firing of Adar Cohen, the Education Ministry bureaucrat in charge of civics education, may be no more than a footnote in the cultural and political wars roiling Israel. In my professional position, running communications for the New Israel Fund, I might agree. My job requires me to sort through the multiple threats to democracy, civil rights and pluralism in Israel. So if someone asked me to advocate for one man who lost his job, I’d be dubious. But a confluence of the professional and personal leads me to confront the issues…Read More... | 3 Comments
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas' speech at the International Conference on Jerusalem in Doha on Saturday set off the most proverbial alarm bells in Israel. Caveat: Without actually seeing the full text of the speech, or being at the conference, I am dependent on excerpts in news reports that seem designed to reinforce auto-pilot rallying cries of each side. Abbas' general theme seemed to be raising awareness of the grave injustices perpetrated on the Palestinian population of East Jerusalem, such as Israel's attempt to build walls to keep them in or out, Judaize the eastern part, and use archeological/historical research to…Read More... | 30 Comments
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On the challenges facing a growing population of asylum seekers and refugees in Israel.
Kerry's peace process
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Plan to displace Bedouin
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