According to a new poll, 75 percent of British Jews believe Israeli settlements are a 'major' obstacle to peace. Over 60 percent believe making peace with the Palestinians is Israel's top priority. The British Jewish community is undergoing a shift in its attitudes towards the Israeli government, according to a new report released on Thursday. The survey, which was funded by British "pro-Israel, pro-peace" group Yachad and conducted by academics at the City University in London, showed that while British Jews are overwhelmingly supportive of Israel as a Jewish state, a large majority — 75 percent — believes settlements are a…Read More...
Despite what Israeli leaders may have you believe, Islamic fundamentalism is not the driving force behind the latest violence. "Say a prayer before leaving your house, dress in your best clothing. Brush your hair well, and smile for the camera. You may end up as another poster on the bleeding walls of the city. No one is safe from their guns." — A young Palestinian from Silwan, Jerusalem, October 2015. This quote was written on Facebook a number of weeks ago by a young Palestinian who has been the subject of dozens of arrests and has spent much of his…Read More...
Using haunting aerial photographs of the Negev Desert, American artist Fazal Sheikh challenges the notion that the desert was an unpopulated land before Zionism made it bloom. By Tom Pessah In “Caravan Song,” the late Arik Einstein sings of a caravan of Zionist immigration and settlement that began in the 19th century and continues to this day. Most of the song is in his own voice, apart from one line in which he lovingly imitates David Ben-Gurion promising that the Negev will bloom. It is less acceptable today to talk of a people without a land populating a land…Read More... | 1 Comment
The Rhodesia fantasy sees an Israel that can be controlled by a very small elite, what they refer to as a ‘villa in the jungle.’ At the heart of the delusion is an imagined community of ‘founders’ and an imagined majority status for what was always a minority. By Seth J. Frantzman Earlier this month the editor of a major newspaper in Israel complained that the “non-Zionist tribes” were gaining ground in Israel. “There is no consensus on a joint, unifying national ethos…Ultra-Orthodox Jews and Arabs, who do not wave the flag or sing the national anthem, reject the ‘Jewish and…Read More...
Like Palestinians today, Jewish hunger strikers used the method to demand fair trial and better jail conditions in 1950s Iraq. Orit Bashkin Some have compared the act of hunger striking to terrorism, claiming that there is no difference between a suicide bomber who targets civilians on a bus and a political prisoner who puts himself on the verge of death. These types of comparisons are baseless, of course. And it is also important to remember that hunger strikes have played an important role in the struggle of political prisoners, from suffragists in America to Mahatma Gandhi in India, as a…Read More... | 2 Comments
The Israeli national anthem, a Zionist hymn that excludes Israel's Palestinian population, could soon become part of the job requirement for judges. Do you want to be a judge in Israel? Then according to Yisrael Beiteinu MK Robert Ilatov, you must sing Hatikva, the Israeli national anthem. [tmwinpost] Although Ilatov was only elected to the judicial appointment committee early Thursday morning, it did not take him very long to voice his thoughts on the job requirements. In an interview for Army Radio, Ilatov stated that potential judges should display the appropriate devotion to the State of Israel. "In my view, a…Read More... | 1 Comment
I am a citizen of two countries whose politics I loathe, yet feel very connected to. Why, then, do Iranian national symbols fill me with pride, while Israeli ones make me feel uncomfortable? For the past three days I have been excitedly following reports of the celebrations in Iran following the signing of the nuclear agreement with the West. These are days of joy and optimism for the Iranian people, both inside and outside the country. [tmwinpost] As the news broke, thousands of Iranians spontaneously flooded the streets of nearly every city in the country. Even opposition members celebrated in…Read More... | 5 Comments
As the Bedouin village of Umm al-Hiran prepares to be replaced by a Jewish town with a near-identical name, its residents are offering solutions based on real co-existence. By Ariel Dloomy In July 2007 I witnessed one of the saddest events of my life. Hundreds of security force personnel descended upon the Bedouin village of Umm al-Hiran in order to evict the residents and demolish their homes. The police removed cradles together with the infants while bulldozers razed the homes and uprooted olive trees from the yards. Dozens of Jewish youth hired by the demolition contractor loaded residents’ personal belongings…Read More... | 10 Comments
A new book looks at the ways in which ancient religious manuscripts belonging to Yemenite Jews, as well as thousands of books owned by Palestinians and Holocaust survivors became part of Israel's National Library in Jerusalem. By Gish Amit (Translated by Shaked Spier) The book "Ex Libris: History of Robbery, Preservation, and Appropriation in the National Library in Jerusalem," addresses three affairs that took place within the walls of the Israeli National Library in Jerusalem: the robbery of Yemenite Jews’ manuscripts, which migrated to Israel during the 1940’s and 50’s; the collection of many thousands of book owned by Palestinians, which…Read More... | 5 Comments
I wanted to believe that my mother's cries, who for years woke up in the middle of the night, crying in a mix of Arabic and Italian, were not heard by a single writer of Israeli history. By Yossi Sucary I wanted the believe that the Nazis' bullets, which struck the heads of my mother's 12 and 13-year-old cousins with frightening precision, accidentally missed the history books of the State of Israel. I wanted to believe that my grandmother, who was taken from the blazing heat of the Sahara Desert, where she lived as a free and loving woman, on…Read More... | 6 Comments
The phrase 'Israeli Arabs' is meant to divide us from the rest of the Palestinian people. Thankfully, more and more young Palestinian citizens are no longer scared to openly confront their own Pharaoh and reclaim their story. "So explain it to me again," Amanda repeated. "How can it be that while Israel celebrates its independence, or whatever they call it, there is no public discussion on the occupation? Or the fact that Israel has been controlling another nation for nearly 50 years? The hypocrisy is staggering!" Now try explaining Israeli society's denial and blindness to a friend from New Zealand whom…Read More... | 18 Comments
Kamal Hachkar's film, 'Echoes From the Mellah,' looks at Morocco's history, which not long ago included Jews and Muslims living together in peaceful co-existence, and serves as an important resource for building a vision of a shared Jewish-Palestinian existence. By Ronit Chacham (translated by Noam Benishei) The January 6 screening of Kamal Hachkar’s "Tinghir-Jerusalem: Echoes From the Mellah," at the opening of Doc Aviv Festival in Yeruham, and the following screening at Ben-Gurion University, were first and foremost an opportunity to broach a subject that is at the heart of our lives: Muslim-Jewish relations. This time, however, it was done through…Read More... | 2 Comments
Many in the Israeli Left saw the recent election defeat as a danger to democracy. But if the Left wants to win elections, it needs to let go of its anti-Mizrahi fear-mongering and racism. by Elad Ben Elul (translated by Joshua Tartakovsky) In order to understand the outcome of the recent elections in Israel, one has to step away from the two central conceptual frameworks that make up the discourse of most Israelis, but in fact do not capture the complex reality below the surface. One has to step away from the traditional boxes of “Right” versus “Left” and of…Read More... | 18 Comments
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