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Supreme Court rules Palestinian American student can enter Israel

Israeli authorities had canceled Lara Alqassem’s student visa because they accused her of being a BDS activist, despite her intention of studying at an Israeli university.

+972 Magazine Staff

Israel’s Supreme Court on Thursday ordered the interior minister to allow Lara Alqasem, a Palestinian American who was barred from entering Israel over her alleged support for BDS, to enter the country so she can begin her studies at Hebrew University. Alqassem had been held at an immigration detention facility since she arrived at Ben-Gurion Airport two weeks ago.

Israel’s entry law allows the interior minister to deny entry to anyone who actively calls for the boycott of Israel, its institutions, or its settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories.

The court accepted Alqassem’s attorneys’ argument that the law only applies to current, active activists, and that she had not been involved with any organizations advocating BDS for over a year.

Alqassem was previously a chapter president of Students for Justice in Palestine, a national student group that supports BDS.

The evidence presented by Israeli authorities simply didn’t meet the test to justify her deportation under the spirit or the letter of the law, the justices wrote, which made the interior minister’s decision to cancel her visa unreasonable.

“This is a fundamental divergence from the law, which is written in present tense.” Attorney Yotam Ben-Hillel argued to the court during an appeal hearing on Wednesday.

In their ruling, the justices added that the fact that Alqassem had already been issued a visa made her case different than that of someone who is denied entry from the start.

Hebrew University had joined Alqassem in the appeal challenging her deportation, and argued that preventing Alqasem from entering Israel would “play into the hands of those who claim that we are a dark state.”

“This is a publicized incident, it will harm those who are considering coming to Israel,” the university’s attorney said in court on Wednesday. “They do not know the situation and will come to the conclusion that a visa will not be enough, but that they will be exposed to deportation upon arrival in the country.”

The justices also gave a nod to that argument in their decision, writing that by ostensibly causing damage to Israel’s reputation, the decision to deport Alqassem went against the intention of Israel’s BDS entry law — to protect the image of Israel.

Hundreds of academics in the...

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Standing in the way of the machines preparing to destroy an entire village

Every time a home is destroyed, people lose a significant part of their world. But in Khan al-Ahmar it isn’t just a home — it is an entire community, their land, and their place in the world.

By Karen Isaacs

I am tired and my body hurts. I have slept very few hours this week and except for this morning, I have woken up at 5 a.m. while it was still dark. I don’t understand why I should have the right to live in my own home and the people of Khan al-Ahmar should not. I don’t understand because there isn’t a way to understand.

The mother of the house I have been staying at asked me, over a beautiful dinner that she feared might be her last in her home, why they want to do this — to destroy our homes, to make us leave. I told her I didn’t think there was an answer. It is just racism and discrimination; there is no real reason. Any reason someone can give is not a good enough answer to justify violently displacing people from their homes. There is a reason that destroying an entire village under military occupation and forcibly transferring its people is deemed a war crime.

Every time a home is destroyed, people lose a significant part of their world. But in this case it isn’t just a home: it is a community, their land, their school, and their place in the world, which they have worked hard to build after becoming refugees from their first home.

In recent days I have seen people put themselves in the way of the machines — actual machines and humans in uniform machines — preparing to destroy this village. I have watched people young and old hold on to friends as tightly as they could for as long as they could until they were pulled and pushed and thrown to the ground. I sat and caught my breath with people I know and trust and other people I have only known for days, and have quickly learned to trust through their actions.

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I spoke Hebrew to the police who were pushing us. I told them they didn’t need to use their tasers. I put myself in front of other people in the hope they would be less violent toward me as a woman — as someone speaking to them in their own language.

I...

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Everything you need to know about Khan al-Ahmar

Israeli authorities are set to demolish and forcibly displace the entire Palestinian village of Khan al-Ahmar any day now. Here is what you need to know about the village, and why rights groups and world leaders are describing Israel’s plans as a war crime.

By +972 Magazine Staff

For nearly a decade, the community of Khan al-Ahmar has been fighting the Israeli government’s attempts to evacuate its village, located just east of Jerusalem, and move its residents to a garbage dump in East Jerusalem. Now, after a green light from Israel’s High Court of Justice, the hamlet is under imminent threat of demolition.

Why does Israel say it wants to destroy Khan al-Ahmar?

The Israeli government says the village was built on state land without the required permits or a master plan. For Palestinians in Area C of the West Bank, under direct Israeli control — and where Khan al-Ahmar is located — obtaining building permits is often close to impossible.

Who lives in Khan al-Ahmar?

The village is made up of around 180 members of the Jahalin Bedouin tribe, which has a 70-year-long history of dispossession and forced relocation by the Israeli government. Before Israel’s establishment, the Jahalin lived in the area of Tel Arad in the Negev, located in present-day Israel. Following the 1948 war, the Israeli military forced them out of their villages and into the West Bank; they settled in the pink, rocky hills of what today is known as Mishor Adumim in the early 1970s. Most of the villagers live in makeshift tin shacks or tents, and make their living off grazing.

For more, read Joshua Leifer’s piece on the history of the Jahalin.

What does Israel want to do with the villagers of Khan al-Ahmar?

Israeli authorities plan to move residents to Al Jabel, an area in East Jerusalem located near a garbage dump, where each family is supposed to receive a plot of land of around 300 square meters. Although Israel’s High Court ruled that the residents can be expelled from their village, they cannot be forced to move to the site in Al Jabel.

What about the village’s famed eco-school? Is it slated for demolition as well?

Yes. The village school, built in 2009 out of mud, tires, and clay with the help of an Italian NGO that specializes in ecological structures, serves the...

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What it takes to organize a film screening in Gaza

Getting an entry permit from the Israeli army, securing permission to screen the film from Hamas, and how to prepare for inevitable power cuts are only some of the hurdles. Imagine what it takes to coordinate humanitarian aid.

By Jen Marlowe

We had been talking about organizing the Gaza premiere of Naila and the Uprising for months, but it wasn’t until mid-summer that my colleague in Gaza, Fadi Abu Shammalah, and I began the preparations in earnest.

Fadi and I discussed the merits of the two potential venues that could accommodate a film screening of the scale we were anticipating. The first was the Red Crescent Cinema Hall. The second was Al-Meshal Cultural Center. And then, on August 9, the dilemma was answered for us: Israel bombed the Al-Meshal Cultural Center, wounding 24 people and reducing the potential venue to a pile of rubble.

Organizing a film screening in Gaza may not rank near the top of the list of most pressing concerns facing the Strip. But it provides a window into what it takes to organize almost anything in Gaza.

First, there was the matter of my entry. Fadi and I had produced the Gaza side of Naila and the Uprising on behalf of Just Vision, a non-profit whose other films include Budrus and My Neighbourhood. It was important that both of us represent the film at the Gaza premiere. But there are only three avenues in which Israel lets foreigners cross into Gaza: with an Israeli government-issued press card; as part of an Israeli-approved diplomatic mission; or via a humanitarian aid organization registered with the Israeli Ministry of Welfare.

Luckily, a humanitarian organization that had supported the film agreed to coordinate my entry and submitted the request to the Israeli military. I was not optimistic — I had heard from several sources that since 2016, when Israel accused the head of World Vision in Gaza of siphoning money to Hamas, requests from humanitarian agencies are denied much more. I only learned a week before my flight to Tel Aviv that I had received permission from the Israeli army to enter Gaza. A second request, for a Palestinian colleague from East Jerusalem, was neither granted nor denied — as far as we know, it is still “pending.”

Next, we needed permission from the Hamas authorities in Gaza. Previously this process took a mere three days, but the day...

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The audacity of unchecked power in Khan al-Ahmar

An entire Palestinian village is facing destruction. What follows will dictate the fate of Palestinian communities all over the West Bank. 

By Hagai El-Ad

Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman’s recent op-ed in the Jerusalem Post – designed to whitewash the war crime of the destruction of an entire Palestinian community in the occupied West Bank – is riddled with lies and distortions.

The very premise he posits in his opening sentence is untrue. Liberman writes of “a judicial ruling for the relocation of a small group of squatters from Khan al-Ahmar.” The High Court of Justice’s ruling, however, actually addressed demolition orders, not “relocation.” Moreover, the state assured the court that it is not seeking to forcibly transfer the nearly 200 residents – not squatters – who call Khan al-Ahmar home. By misrepresenting the court’s recent decision, Liberman reveals the true intentions of his government.

Furthermore, contrary to Liberman’s hollow claims, this is a question neither of “the rule of law” nor of “the well-being of these people themselves.” The rule of law, in any meaningful sense, has been absent from Palestinians’ lives in the occupied territories ever since 1967. Israel clings to the letter of the law and creates legal-sounding justifications for its organized state violence. In most of the occupied West Bank, building “legally,” i.e., with a permit, is reserved for settlers — an option Israel denies Palestinians.

As for the “well-being of these people,” Liberman’s arrogance in deciding for them what is best for them epitomizes the occupation and the overarching principle of ruling over another people, deprived of political rights: Israel makes all the decisions. To that end, it has established a completely one-sided planning regime with absolutely no Palestinian representation. This guarantees, in fact, the well-being of a growing settler population at the expense of Palestinians, while cynically claiming to address the best interests of the people whose homes it is about to raze to the ground.

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To top it off, Liberman feigns indignation over other countries daring to question Israel’s “internal judicial processes,” ignoring the fact that there is nothing “internal” in what happens to protected people living under prolonged military rule in areas outside Israel’s recognized borders. And there is nothing “judicial” in yet another ruling by Israel’s High Court of Injustice that serves the occupation, in which Israeli justices represent Israeli interests...

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Israel puts popular Palestinian leader on trial for 'incitement' on Facebook

Raja Eghbarieh, a Palestinian citizen of Israel and leader of a movement that boycotts the Knesset elections, was charged last month with incitement for a number of posts he wrote on Facebook. The judge, for now, remains unconvinced.

By Yoav Haifawi

An Israeli court heard arguments Tuesday against authorities’ demand that a popular Palestinian political activist, charged with incitement last month, remain behind bars through the end of legal proceedings.

Israeli authorities arrested Raja Eghbarieh, the former secretary-general of the Abnaa al-Balad movement — a leftist Palestinian faction that boycotts the Knesset elections — at his home in Umm Al-Fahm on September 11. On September 20 he was indicted in the Haifa Magistrate’s Court on “incitement to terror” and “identification with a terrorist organization,” based on 10 different posts on his personal Facebook page. The prosecution filed a request to keep him in jail until the end of the legal proceedings.

A number of posts mentioned in the indictment relate to an attack in July 2017 by three Palestinian citizens from Umm Al-Fahm who shot dead two Israeli policemen in Al-Aqsa Compound in Jerusalem, and who were killed themselves during the attack. While Eghbarieh’s posts do not express support for the attack, it seems that the very use of the word martyrs (“shuhada” in Arabic), the analysis of their motives, and expressing grief over their death is regarded as unlawful.

Another post in question includes a photo from the commemoration at the first anniversary of the killing of Bassel Al-Araj, who was shot and killed by Israeli soldiers in Ramallah. Al-Araj was well known as an independent activist and a leader of the youth protest movements in the West Bank. The indictment claims he was a member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), and carried out terrorist attacks at the behest of Hezbollah.

In yet another post, Eghbarieh commemorated the 10th anniversary of the death of George Habash, the founder of the PFLP and one of the most prominent and influential figures in the history of the Arab left.

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The prosecution argues that releasing Eghbarieh, even under restrictive conditions, constitutes a “danger to the public,” since he might continue to publish posts on Facebook.

On October 2, Judge Maria Pikus Bogdanov heard the request to extend Eghbarieh’s detention until the end of legal...

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The occupation wears Prada: Meet the new face of 'economic peace'

When Israeli shoe designer Gal Shukroon decided to start a project bringing together Palestinian and Jewish women to make shoes, the Israeli army couldn’t resist and used it for its own PR purposes.

By Meron Rapoport

The Israeli military published a video earlier this week featuring Tel Aviv shoe designer Gal Shukroon, who recently launched a new line of shoes, made in a Hebron factory, and inspired by Palestinian embroidery. The goal of the project, according to Shukroon, is to bring love “instead of hate.” Once Palestinian women can earn a respectable livelihood, she says “terrorism comes less into the home.”

In the video, produced by the Coordinator for Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT), the branch of the Israeli defense ministry that administers the occupation, Shukroon says the idea came to her while leafing through a Time Out Tel Aviv issue dedicated to Ramallah, in which one of the articles was about Palestinian fashion designers and embroiderers.

Shukroon says that the path to designing the shoes was easier than expected. She got a phone number of a shoemaker in Hebron and soon thereafter visited him in his factory, without any army accompaniment. “The initial meeting in the Hebron factory was a riveting experience,” Shukroon tells me. “I had never visited any of Palestinian Authority areas, I met some incredible people there. I tell my friends that whenever I feel the need to go abroad, I hop over to Hebron. This crazy experience would never have taken place had I not met with those people.”

At the factory, Shukroon found only male employees. “It doesn’t make sense that men make my shoes, so I asked that they start employing women,” she says. That’s precisely what happened. She created her own collection, “Baraka” (Arabic for “blessing”), with the same motifs she first saw in the Palestinian embroideries. Shukroon is well aware she may be accused of “cultural theft,” but argues that she didn’t lift the embroideries themselves. “I only took inspiration from them. I was cautious.”

Her vision goes beyond a single collection. Shukroon wants to build a factory that will employee 100 Palestinian and Jewish women, which will have to be located in Area C of the West Bank (under full Israeli military control), so that everyone will be able to get there. Shukroon also envisions a center next to the factory where the women...

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'We all live under one undemocratic system, so we must struggle together'

In a letter from prison, Israeli conscientious objector Hillel Garmi responds to Ahmed Abu Artema, one of the leaders of Gaza’s Great Return March. ‘Although we will not agree on everything, I discovered a vision for justice in your writing.’ Read Abu Artema’s open letter here.

By Hillel Garmi

Ahmed,

I am writing to you from an Israeli military prison, after the open letter you published last week was read to me over the phone. It is not easy for me to write from prison, and at first I thought to wait until I am able to do so from the comfort of my own home. In the end, however, I decided to respond now with a short and simple letter. Over the last few years I have done much deliberation. At first, I mulled over whether to enlist in the army. As I began to realize I would be avoiding military service, I began to think about how to do so. I first thought of obtaining the necessary documentation to show that I am mentally unfit to serve. Then I thought about refusing to serve anonymously.

Finally, I decided on a public refusal. As I was coming to terms with my decision, I began to think about how to maximize my influence by bringing my decision to the public consciousness. I read about past conscientious objectors and tried to imagine how I could breathe new life into the phenomenon — to say something that would make it real and make it relevant for others.

As I weighed the possibilities, the Great Return March began in Gaza. On the one hand, I saw how the protests were covered by the mainstream media in Israel, which deemed them as a clever and violent provocation by Hamas — and which shed a positive light on the Israeli army’s violent and disproportionate response. On the other hand, I saw a different image being portrayed on alternative and international media outlets. Aside from a few exceptions, which are inevitable in almost every popular struggle, I saw an extraordinary and nonviolent civil initiative. In my search for the truth I found articles you wrote, which included a vision that aligned with my own.

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Those who seek peace on both sides heave searched for a pragmatic partner with whom they can agree with on over conditions to end the...

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From Palestine to Ferguson: Reflections on shared grief and liberation

Formerly incarcerated women of color perform the story of a Palestinian teen killed by Israeli police in October 2000. The act of Black-Palestine solidarity highlights shared trauma, but also concrete ways toward liberation.

By Jen Marlowe and Je Naé Taylor

On October 2, 2000, Aseel Asleh, a 17-year old Palestinian citizen of Israel, was shot and killed by Israeli police at a demonstration outside his village in northern Israel. On September 3, a staged reading of “There is a Field,” a documentary play of Aseel’s life and killing, was performed as part of the Kennedy Center’s Page to Stage Festival, produced by the Gildapapoose Collective, a D.C.-based direct action and arts organization that seeks Black liberation.

What made the event unique: Black and Brown women directly impacted by incarceration led the performance. Even more unique: some of those women were bailed out due to funds raised through staged readings of the very same play. Here, the director and Gildapapoose founder, Je Naé Taylor, reflects on the process and performance with the playwright, Jen Marlowe.

Taylor: Why did you first write There is a Field?

Marlowe: Aseel was a friend of mine – he had been my camper in a peace organization that I was working for at the time. When he was murdered, I knew I had to do something to make sure that his life and how he was killed would be remembered. A few months after his killing, I asked his older sister Nardeen if she wanted to partner with me on writing a play, and that’s when we began.

Taylor: So There is a Field really started for you as a tribute to Aseel. What connections does this play make for you now?

Marlowe: I finished an earlier version of the play in 2010, and then I put the script down. Several years later, I decided that I wanted to develop the script further, so in the summer of 2014, I picked it back up. This was just as protests against police brutality and racism erupted across the U.S., after police in Ferguson, Missouri killed an unarmed Black teenager. I couldn’t help but see the parallels between Aseel’s story and the state violence that plays out on Black and Brown bodies here in the U.S. I wanted the play to provide a framework for those connections to be explored.

Taylor: The...

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We told ourselves we weren't settlers. We were something different

In the Jerusalem neighborhood of Pisgat Ze’ev, we didn’t think of ourselves as settlers, despite the fact that we lived beyond the Green Line and our neighbors were Palestinian. 

By Ofer Matan

The first Arab who stepped into our home was Sabah. The first time we met, Sabah washed his hands in our kitchen sink on a cold morning after the Jewish holidays, just before he helped my mother start her yellow Renault 12. The car already had problems with the gears by the early 80s, and Sabah would push it from behind toward the decline while she put it in neutral. She would then hit the clutch and put it into second gear, causing the motor to sputter and finally ignite. My mother knew to thank Sabah in advance, since from the moment the engine started and she could drive the car, he would fade into irrelevance.

On days he wasn’t pushing, Sabah would start his mornings with a prayer atop the cliff at the end of our street, which years later would be built up with terraced apartment buildings. It was always cold there, but his dusty jacket kept him warm. At nights he would sleep in the building site, most likely inside the concrete mixer truck. When someone on our street would lose electricity, or whenever a neighbor would feel the need to complain that her floor polish was too smooth, they would call out “Sabah, Sabah,” and he would appear.

Once, when he passed by the kindergarten, we all stood up on the fence and sang a demeaning children’s song against Arabs. I was impressed that those who ran our neighborhood could find an Arab who understood how to start engines, knew about polish, and didn’t mind our songs.

On the day the neighborhood’s last building site turned into a full-fledged building, they exchanged signatures with Sabah and wished him success. According to my calculations, this was just before Italy hosted the World Cup in 1990. I was not yet 10 years old.

Abu Ali, the second Arab who came into our home, owned a straw furniture store on the main street of Jerusalem’s Shuafat neighborhood, which we sometimes mistakenly referred to as Beit Hanina. Next to his store was a candy shop owned by Christians called Sani 2000, which sold chocolate Santas and Pepsi. My father explained that Pepsi was like a lesser Coca Cola,...

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The case for a unified Palestinian protest movement

The Arab Higher Monitoring Committee is calling for a general strike against recent Israel-U.S. attempts to further repress Palestinians. This is an opportunity to involve a younger generation of activists, and coordinate a joint struggle.

By Rabeea Eid

Palestinians across Israel, the West Bank and Gaza are banding together in a general strike on October 1, in protest of Israel’s Jewish Nation-State Law and President Donald Trump’s “deal of the century.” The strike was announced this week by the Arab Higher Monitoring Committee, an umbrella organization that represents Arab citizens of Israel.

The strike is significant in its ability to bring Palestinian people together in a joint act of protest. There is no doubt that, going forward, the Palestinian struggle must shatter physical and political fragmentation, and unite all Palestinians – in Gaza, the West Bank, Jerusalem, and even refugees in the diaspora. A joint struggle will require shared thinking and strategizing, and will involve cooperation on acts of protest such as strikes, demonstrations, and days of rage.

Israel’s attempt to erase the Palestinian issue has accelerated, now that Trump has set the “deal of the century” in motion, and that the Jewish Nation-State Law was enacted with complete disregard to the historical and just rights of the Palestinian people. These developments have asserted Zionist supremacy and control over the land. They are reflected clearly in America’s recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and the transfer of its embassy there, the cessation of U.S. funding to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), unprecedented normalization and intensification of Israeli settlements in the West Bank, the blockade of the Gaza Strip and the brutal suppression of nonviolent marches there, as well as downgrading Palestinians in Israel to last-class citizens and persecuting them politically.

Despite internal criticism directed at Palestinian groups, including the Arab Higher Monitoring Committee, and despite the deteriorating political situation across Palestine, which highlights our failures and divisions, the call for a general strike should not be underestimated or treated as a regular act of protest.

In the summer of 2013, after waves of criticism aimed at Arab leaders and political factions, the Arab Higher Monitoring Committee announced a day of protest on July 15 against the Prawer Plan, a government plan to forcibly relocate tens of thousands of Bedouin citizens in the Negev. At the time, youth movements urged people to...

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Could solar energy solve the Gaza electricity crisis?

The Gaza Strip has been suffering from a severe electricity crisis for years. Now, solar energy is on the rise as a more reliable alternative, one that may afford Gazans a degree of independence from Israel.

By Ibrahim Abdelhadi

Two years ago, when the lights went out along Gaza’s shore, the Hindi family lit up some candles in their home. What ensued was a tragedy: their house burned down, and they lost three of their children in the fire. Unfortunately, these incidents are not uncommon in Gaza.

The Gaza Strip, home to 2 million Palestinians, has been suffering from a severe electricity crisis for years, and Gazans have grown accustomed to an average of four hours of electricity a day. A new initiative aims to harness the energy of the sun to overcome this crisis, and reduce Gaza’s reliance on Israel for electricity.

Khalid Nasman, 45, an electrical engineer from Gaza City, took it upon himself to install solar grids on rooftops in his neighborhood, where 15 houses and businesses agreed to raise $37,000 to collectively purchase a set of solar panels. “The cost of solar panels is relatively low compared to conventional fossil energy, such as natural gas and diesel fuels, which fluctuate in price. Their maintenance has also become economically and practically useless, given the frequent closures of the crossings,” said Nasman.

The cells are a source of hope, he added – they can provide electricity for an uninterrupted 24 hours, and compensate for the shortage the neighborhood incurs during outages. Solar energy has allowed residents to operate various household appliances, such as fans, which have been especially helpful during summer heatwaves.

According to Nasman, renewable energy projects in the Gaza Strip are steadily expanding. International organizations are increasingly sponsoring development projects that supply hundreds of homes, health centers, schools, water desalination plants and sewage plants with solar cells. Several lending institutions are providing green loans, designed to encourage people to make energy-saving improvements to their homes and businesses.

Gaza’s chronic electricity deficit intensified after Hamas took over the strip in 2006. That summer, when Hamas militants captured Israeli soldier Gilad Schalit (he was released in a 2011 prisoner swap), Israel bombed the only power plant there, which used to supply 43 percent of the electricity in Gaza. Now, the strip needs an estimated 500 megawatts a day but only gets about a third of that, from three different sources. The...

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'Let us fight together for human rights, for a country that is democratic for all its citizens'

Ahmed Abu Artema, one of the organizers of the Great Return March in Gaza, responds to Israeli conscientious objector Hillel Garmi, who said his decision to refuse the draft is partly inspired by Artema’s acts of civil disobedience.

By Ahmed Abu Artema

Thank you, Hillel. You gave us hope.

The morality of a position is not measured by how closely it reflects popular opinion, but by its unique advantage. Throughout history, those who did not compromise their morals were the ones who carried more weight and inspired others, even if they were alone to confront mainstream perspectives. When a person decides to take an ethical stand, they fulfill their human calling and reconcile with the reason we were born into this universe, even if it comes at the cost of their personal comfort.

Dear Hillel, I read your letter and listened to your recording on YouTube. You sparked a feeling of hope in my heart, that there is a foundation on which to create a more just and humane reality between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea – a reality that does not derive its legitimacy based on the number of people who believe it can be accomplished at the moment, but because it is more feasible and closer to the values of justice and equality, and is based on respecting humans, rather than disqualifying them.

Your decision is what will help end this dark period inflicted on Palestinians, and at the same time mitigate the fears of younger Israeli generations who were born into a complicated situation and a turbulent geographical area deprived of security and peace.

Palestinians do not seek to drive Israelis into the sea, and Israelis cannot ignore the fact that there are more than 10 million Palestinians who still dream of the day they will live in freedom, and return to the homes they were forcible removed from in 1948. We can choose between two options, and there is no third: either we agree on a compromise based on a shared existence in accordance with human rights and equality, or we continue with this state of instability for 70 more years.

Dear Hillel, I grew up in the Gaza Strip, where my grandfather sought refuge after he was forcibly displaced from his hometown, Ramleh. I envy your ability to visit Ramleh with ease, while I have not been able to make it across the...

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