While its campaign of intimidation against supposed left-wing Israeli artists seems to have backfired, Im Tirtzu's role in Israel's current political climate cannot be overstated. The political climate in Israel has become so draconian and repressive lately that it was slightly surprising how quickly everyone rushed to denounce Im Tirtzu's latest campaign against mainstream artists and celebrities who sit or have sat on the boards of human rights organizations. Leaders across the political spectrum condemned the campaign, including Netanyahu, who has previously sung Im Tirtzu's praises on camera. Following the backlash, the group told the Israeli press they had made a…Read More... | 2 Comments
In these days of entrapping human rights activists and blacklisting 'traitors,' the concept of equality has become as radical as it gets — and a threat to everything the governing regime stands for. Last week Israeli lawmakers had the opportunity to take a first step towards enshrining equality in the law. They rejected this opportunity, voting down Joint List MK Jamal Zahalka's proposed amendment to include a clause on equality in Israel's Basic Law: Human Dignity and Liberty. [tmwinpost] The vote was taken on a preliminary reading of Zahalka's bill, meaning that it was shot down before it even left…Read More... | 48 Comments
The Zionist dream is disappearing due to the rise of the messianic Right. Jews who are worried must know there is an alternative: building a society based on equality and democracy. The end of the Zionist era is upon us. Perhaps it is time to close this chapter in the history of the Jewish people. The Zionist movement has succeeded, and now it is time to take down the monster before it goes too far. [tmwinpost] You, our Jewish cousins, established a state in the most unjust way possible. One cannot hide the Palestinian people or what they have gone…Read More... | 5 Comments
Instead of continuing to give benefits to Israel's richest sector, it is time to redivide the pie and give some of that wealth to the poorest citizens. By Sigal Harush Yehonatan In the span of just one week, two separate headlines managed to demonstrate the intolerable social and economic reality in Israel. The first was about a deal that will allow residents of kibbutzim and moshavim (Israel's communal settlements) to build third residential units on land originally slated for agriculture. This outrageous decision essentially hands over millions of shekels to these residents, as the deal allows them to purchase the…Read More... | 1 Comment
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
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