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Absentee Property Law

  • This isn't Israel's first 'land theft law,' it won't be the last

    Israel has a long and rich history of using the law to dispossess Palestinians of their land. Anyone willing to see what’s taken place over the past 70 years shouldn’t feign outrage at the latest ‘land theft law.’ Congrats to the Israeli Knesset for passing the settlement “regulation law” (also known as the “normalization law” and the “formalization law”) earlier this week. The law retroactively legalizes the theft by Israeli settlers of land privately owned by Palestinians, largely land on which those settlements Israel calls “illegal outposts” were constructed — because their existence is illegal even under Israeli law. To…

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  • Every day is Land Day, on both sides of the Green Line

    The word 'occupation' evokes the West Bank, but the policies of land expropriation and Judaization were perfected inside Israel long before they were used on Palestinians in the occupied territories. In 2005, Amnon Raz-Karkotzkin, a professor of Jewish history at Ben-Gurion University known to his friends and associates simply as Nono, published a seminal article titled "There is No God, But He Promised Us the Land." The article, published in Hebrew in Mitaam, an Israeli journal devoted to literature and radical political thought, captured perfectly the spirit of the Zionists who founded the State of Israel. While Judaism may have…

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  • JNF, settler group seek to evict Palestinian family in Silwan

    The Jewish National Fund, known to Jews worldwide as an organization that plants trees in Israel, is once again trying to evict a Palestinian family from their home in East Jerusalem. By Moriel Rothman-Zecher Over the past few decades, the Jewish National Fund (JNF-KKL), an organization known to many in the diaspora for its work planting trees in Israel (I gave a portion of my Bar Mitzvah money to the JNF), has been working in coordination with Elad, an extremist settler organization whose explicit goals include the “Judaization" of East Jerusalem. Since 1991, the cooperation between these two organizations has…

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