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Black Panthers

  • More than 100 files from the 1800s are still classified in Israel’s archives

    Israel recently published its catalogue of some 300,000 classified files, including thousands of documents from before the state was even founded. The very existence of the files had been kept a secret until recently. By Asaf Shalev Israel’s State Archives unceremoniously published the contents of its catalog of classified archive documents this past summer, posting them online in 363 separate spreadsheets. Buried in the catalog of classified archives were more than 100 files dating back to the 1800s, and more than 2,000 files that predate the founding of the State of Israel but which the archive has yet to declassify. [tmwinpost]…

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  • Palestinians are the glue that holds Ashkenazim and Mizrahim together

    Sixty-nine years after the founding of the state, the hatred between Mizrahim and Ashkenazim is the greatest threat to Israeli society. Instead of properly dealing with it, all our energy is spent on sowing a collective hatred toward Palestinians. By Iris Hefets Whenever “the occupation” is mentioned, someone will invariably ask about difference between Ariel University, in the West Bank, and Tel Aviv University, built on the remains of destroyed Palestinian village Al-Shaykh Muwannis. This subversive question indeed touches on an uncomfortable truth: the narrative of the settlers is that they are no different from those who fought and drew Israel's borders in 1948.…

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  • Echoes of a Black Panther's murder in killing of Palestinian activist

    In societies conditioned to see Palestinians and blacks as terrorists and criminals, the media and public are often ready to believe state-sanctioned falsehoods about activists like Basel al-Araj and Fred Hampton. By Bram Wispelwey In the early morning hours of December 4th, 1969, Chicago Black Panther leader Fred Hampton, alongside several fellow Panthers, engaged in a fierce shootout with Chicago Police. Hampton and Mark Clark were killed, and multiple Panthers were wounded. The seven survivors were arrested and charged with attempted murder, while the police officers were touted as heroes. The only problem with this story? All of it, as told…

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  • Israel's Black Panthers remind us what their struggle was about

    Back in the 1970s, the deep socioeconomic divide between Ashkenazi and Mizrahi Jews in Israel led to a massive protest movement and the rise of the Israeli Black Panthers. A newly approved official civics textbook in Israel portrays the movement as violent and criminal. We called up three Black Panthers to remind us all of the true nature of their struggle. The following is a chapter in the Education Ministry's newly-approved civics textbook, To be Citizens in Israel: Criminality motivated by ideology — political violence "Political violence is the use of force by an individual of a group in order to attain political…

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  • What Palestinian athletes can learn from Colin Kaepernick

    Palestinian athletes can learn a thing or two from the football star's refusal to stand during his country's national anthem. By Abed Abu Shehadeh One can say many things about American politics, but boring they are not. We are seeing this with the presidential race and the rise of the American Right, which views the world as a reality show where anything can be said — regardless of logic or factual basis — as long as it is stated in the most provocative and blatant manner. On the other hand we cannot ignore the Black Lives Matter movement, which challenges structural racism in the…

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  • Former Black Panther jailed for running Mizrahi pirate radio

    Former Israeli Black Panther and 'godfather of Mizrahi music radio' Israel Bundak goes back to prison for running a pirate radio station. But what role did racism and cultural elitism play in his unprecedented prison sentence? By Hagar Shezaf Former Black Panther and 'godfather of Mizrahi music radio,' Israel Bundak, began serving a 50-day prison term on Sunday. His imprisonment will be the conclusion of an unprecedented 18-month prison sentence and NIS 25,000 (nearly $7,000) fine handed down in December 2009, for the establishment and operation of “Kol Hamizrach” (Voice of The East), a pirate radio station that played only…

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  • On Egypt and elsewhere: The Left's fatal flaw

    First of all, I've changed my mind about the point in my Saturday post that shocked people and got the most attention - that if I'd known last February that Islamists were going to democratically take over Egypt, I would have supported Mubarak instead of the protesters. Prodded to reconsider by a couple of commenters, I saw that this would have meant siding with the dictator's killers and torturers against a crowd of people risking their lives for freedom. No way.  So this is what I wrote in the comments on my post, and in the comments on the pseudonymous R.W. Al-Thahabi's eloquent response yesterday: (L)et’s say that instead of believing,…

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  • Palestinian Freedom Rides and the US Civil Rights movement

    In last week's Freedom Rides, West Bank Palestinians demanded equal access to settler roads and buses. Like African-Americans in the American Civil Rights movement of the 1960s, they seek to call attention to an inherently oppressive system and demand that it be dismantled. By Ben Lorber The “Freedom Rides” held last week in the West Bank to protest restrictions on freedom of movement of Palestinians, have a complex and contested historical legacy. As Fadi Quran, a Palestinian youth activist who was one of the organizers, said: “This year marks the 50th anniversary of the Freedom Rides in the US. Apart…

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