I hurt my leg, so I gave it a treat: a trip to sites across Israel/Palestine that tell of just how fragile the human body is. The doctor says my leg is fine, but I have doubts. I twisted it playing football (soccer, so be it) last autumn, tore a muscle and feared damage to the knee. I then went on to celebrate a "round" birthday. Forty is fairly young, but facing a new decade with an ache makes one ponder the human body and its weaknesses. The body feels different here in Israel/Palestine. It is a land where the…Read More...
Although Israel's Transportation Ministry has begun promoting green, sustainable transportation, a closer look at the government's program reveals tremendous gaps between public transportation in the Jewish communities and the neighboring Arab communities. By Toby Cohen and Hagit Naali-Joseph Anyone for whom the quality of the environment and the future of the planet are top priorities is probably pleased to read the recently published report to the effect that the city of Ashdod has won a special Transportation Ministry tender to finance a plan that will encourage city residents to switch to public transportation. The prize for the winner is almost unheard of in terms of…Read More...
The following are exclusive photos taken on board the Estelle, as the ship was sailing toward the Gaza Strip in an attempt to break Israel's siege on the coastal territory. The Israeli navy took over the ship before it reached its destination, and arrested some twenty activists, among them three Israeli citizens. Huge efforts were made by the IDF Spokesperson's Office to curtail media coverage of the story. The ship was brought into the Ashdod Port after dark, more than ten hours after the Israeli forces took it over. Later that night, the Israeli citizens under arrest were brought to…Read More... | 39 Comments
<< The Christmas Journey Home Petah Tikva - Ben Gurion airport - Ashdod - Givatayim, Merry Rashdistvo! I was hungry, walking at dusk into the city of Petah Tikvah from the Baptist Village. I took a peek into a a small Russian tavern. The looks of it didn't really work my appetite, but something in there did catch my eye. The convenience store next door had a proper display of Christmas candy. The bigger grocery store around the corner was all about Christmas, from chocolate Santas to green and silver stretched along the counter. Then, at the very heart of…Read More... | 5 Comments
Staying on the move in Israel and the Palestinian Territories through a month of trial. Who'd have thought I'd get shot in my mother's hometown? I can venture a bit farther afield today, thanks to my truly beloved readers. So far my emergency fundraiser, following the disastrous effect a Turkish-Israeli diplomatic freeze caused to this journey's budget, accumulated nearly $300 US. This is very moving for me. I never before asked for donations for anything and didn't realize people out there were this appreciative of my work. $300 is not a huge budget for a trip like this, so I…Read More... | 3 Comments
As usual, when a new cycle of violence approaches, the papers are full of prophecies by this military analyst and that political pundit on how long it will last, who will blink first, is Hamas interested in escalation, can Islamic Jihad be curbed, can Israel afford this and will it do that. After only a few tense days, it looks like we’ve got a green light from almost everyone. The Prime Minister is ready: "In the last two weeks there have been parties attempting to disturb peace and security," said Benjamin Netanyahu prior to Sunday's cabinet meeting. "We don't want…Read More... | 7 Comments
There must be some consequence to how most of us grow up with dubious architecture. The "shikunim," dour apartment blocks not quite as gargantuan as those of eastern Europe, but about equally ornate, make up a great deal of the urban and suburban Israeli landscape. They were mostly built during the 1950s and 60s to accommodate huge waves of Jewish newcomers from North Africa and elsewhere. They have grown to become the natural habitat of the Jewish Israeli blue-collar class and lower-middle class. As the years pass, they tend to deteriorate, exposing cheap materials and offhand design, becoming even uglier.…Read More... | 4 Comments
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