While the number of articles submitted to the IDF Censor decreased in 2017, the percentage of articles that it fully or partially redacted went up. Israel’s Military Censor outright prohibited the publication of 271 articles in 2017, more than five a week, and partially or fully redacted a total of 2,358 news items submitted to it for prior review. The latter figure amounts to roughly one redaction every four hours. The figures, provided in response to a freedom of information request filed by +972 Magazine and the Movement for Freedom of Information, represents a rise in the percentage of articles the…Read More...
The surreal arrest and trial of a Palestinian poet symbolizes a crackdown on free speech, surveillance on social media, and rising authoritarian trends in Israel. +972's Story of the Year for 2017. By +972 Magazine For the past year and half, a strange and disturbing drama has been playing out in a Haifa courtroom. In the defendant’s seat is a poet, on trial for a political poem she wrote, performed, and published on Facebook. Whether she goes to prison for publishing that poem rests largely on how the judge ultimately interprets a few words translated by a policeman whose main…Read More... | 1 Comment
The official Israeli government body that accredits journalists has just been honored by the country's PR association for enhancing Israel's image abroad. Anyone who values an independent and free press should be alarmed. The government bureau responsible for accrediting journalists in Israel was honored last month by Israel’s association of public relations professionals for its work promoting government propaganda, known cordially as “hasbara,” or “public diplomacy.” The Government Press Office, which is a division of the Israeli Prime Minister’s Office, was presented the certificate of appreciation at the Israel Public Relations Association’s annual “Roaring Lion” awards ceremony. [tmwinpost] In an announcement…Read More... | 12 Comments
Communications Minister Ayoub Kara held a press conference at which he promised to ‘close’ Al Jazeera. He doesn’t exactly have that type of authority, let alone the ability. By Moshe Ronen Israel’s new communications minister, Ayoub Kara, declared this week that he would act to shut down Al Jazeera’s operations in Israel. Speaking at a press conference on Sunday, Kara explained that he is the only minister in the Israeli government whose mother tongue is Arabic, and therefore he is the only one who understands the channel’s Arabic-language broadcasts. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu wasted no time praising Kara for working…Read More... | 1 Comment
Journalists were standing off to the side of a mass prayer action that devolved into light clashes when police charged at them, singling out Faiz Abu Rmeleh, later beating and harassing him, he says. By Oren Ziv and Michael Schaeffer Omer-Man Israeli police roughed up and detained Activestills photojournalist Faiz Abu Rmeleh Tuesday night while he was covering a mass prayer at the Lions' Gate of the Old City in Jerusalem. The incident is one of many in recent days in which Israeli, Palestinian and foreign press have accused police of restricting their access and in some cases assaulting them.…Read More... | 1 Comment
From asylum seekers demanding their wages to protests against the Gaza blackout to raising awareness over disappeared Yemenite babies, this summer's protests give us every reason to stay optimistic about this place. It's hot outside. The Israeli summer often brings with it a new wave of social and political protests, and yet it looks like summer 2017 will be a special one. [tmwinpost] Since the social justice protest of 2011 — and its successors in the following years — there has been a sense that Israeli citizens have lost faith in their ability to influence, change, protest, and get results. Meanwhile, the strengthening of…Read More... | 7 Comments
Verbal attacks by right-wing groups and politicians in Be'er Sheva are threatening both NGOs and the local university. By Daniel Beller Over the past year various entities, including right-wing movements, have been trying to close down a joint Jewish-Arab cultural institution in the southern Israeli town of Be’er Sheva. The Multaqa-Mifgash Center, founded by the Negev Coexistence Forum (NCF), operates out of a municipal bomb shelter and stages activities and events focused on coexistence. It’s a unique institution in Be’er Sheva, and — aside from Ben-Gurion University — is the only place in the city that holds discussions on fundamental, sensitive…Read More... | 4 Comments
The Solidarity Human Rights Festival, which screens films focused on human rights and activism, recently took place in Tel Aviv. It was held amid increasing concerns around censorship of culture and the arts. Read more: The cultural terrorism of Miri Regev For Palestinian artists, freedom of speech is anything but guaranteedRead More... | 6 Comments
As part of our commitment to promoting freedom of information and fighting censorship, we recently added an important layer of encryption to our website. Here's why we did it, and what it means for you. Over the past year we at +972 Magazine have dedicated significant resources into expanding our journalistic focus on censorship, freedom of information, and online free speech issues in Israel and Palestine. [tmwinpost] We have covered attempts to impose military censorship on Israeli bloggers and social media users, the expanding use of gag orders, we've exposed the previously unknown scope of censorship in Israel, the arbitrary…Read More... | 5 Comments
The Israeli military censor has redacted, in full or in part, over 17,000 articles since 2011. While fewer articles have been censored in 2015 and 2016, the new IDF Censor is attempting to redact already-published information with alarming frequency. The Israeli Military Censor has outright banned the publication of 1,936 articles and redacted some information from 14,196 articles over the past five years. That is 1,936 articles that professional journalists and editors decided were of public interest but which never saw the light of day. In fact, the IDF Censor redacted at least some information from one in five articles submitted to it…Read More...
A Palestinian mother of two and her 16-year-old brother were shot and killed by Israeli security guards at Qalandiya checkpoint in April, even though eyewitnesses say they posed no risk. The police refuse to release the CCTV footage – maybe they know something we don’t? By John Brown* More than four months after a shooting at Qalandiya checkpoint that left dead a Palestinian woman and her 16-year-old brother, the Jerusalem Magistrates' Court on Monday upheld Israel Police's request to extend a gag order on the details of the affair and identity of the suspects by another month. The police said that Maram…Read More... | 5 Comments
At Israel's request, Twitter is blocking Israelis from viewing certain tweets published overseas. Similar take-down notices have been sent to other international online platforms, the Justice Ministry confirms. Israeli authorities are taking steps to block their own citizens from reading materials published online in other countries, including the United States. The Israeli State Attorney’s Office Cyber Division has sent numerous take-down requests to Twitter and other media platforms in recent months, demanding that they remove certain content, or block Israeli users from viewing it. [tmwinpost] In an email viewed by +972, dated August 2, 2016, Twitter’s legal department notified American blogger Richard Silverstein that the Israeli…Read More... | 8 Comments
Despite the fact that eye witnesses have provided versions of events that contradict the police narrative, the latter has refused to release CCTV footage of the shooting that killed two Palestinian siblings. John Brown* Nearly 70 days after Israeli security contractors shot two Palestinian siblings to death at the Qalandiya military checkpoint outside Jerusalem, a Jerusalem Magistrate’s Court judge has extended a sweeping gag order on the case, raising more and more questions about the case. The gag order covers all details about the investigation and any information that might be used to identify the suspects — the security contractors. [tmwinpost] According…Read More... | 1 Comment
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