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  • A lifetime achievement award for normalizing settlements

    David Be'eri won the state's highest award for doing what decades ago would have seemed impossible: inspiring the Israeli people to identify with the settler enterprise. By Yonathan Mizrachi Following last week’s announcement that David Be’eri, the founder of the settler organization Elad, had won the Israel Prize for lifetime achievement, some who closely monitor Israel’s settlement enterprise wondered why a person whose activity is limited to a single neighborhood in East Jerusalem was selected? Why not, say, Ze’ev Hever (Zambish), the figure most closely identified with the settler movement, whose work encompasses the entire West Bank? [tmwinpost] Be’eri, whose mission…

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  • East Jerusalem streets given Hebrew names amid tensions

    The city council pours oil on the fire by approving Hebrew street names in Palestinian neighborhoods as tensions run high. The move is part and parcel of efforts to 'Judaize' the eastern half of the city, which Palestine claims as its future capital. With all eyes on Jerusalem as tensions in the city continue to rise, the city council approved 30 Hebrew street names for roads in East Jerusalem's Palestinian neighborhoods Sunday evening. The decision, which was reported by Israeli news site Walla!, was criticized by Palestinian members of Knesset Ayman Odeh and Ahmad Tibi and goes against the recommendation…

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  • Parks and Occupation: Archaeology is the new security

    The Biblical blueprint is being dragged up around our feet, seeking to use what is under the ground as evidence of divine right and the political and territorial sovereignty it supposedly affords us. The past makes for prime real estate when you're developing a national mythology. It's also a fine way to exert control over an area, both under — and overground. Just ask the residents of Silwan, East Jerusalem, whose homes have variously been placed under demolition orders, dug under, or had access restricted in the name of archaeological exploration. The use of archaeology as a political tool is…

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  • The Davidization of Jerusalem: On the politics of symbols

    It's no coincidence that images of the Tower of David are popping up everywhere in the holy city: right-wing settlers and real estate moguls alike have been using the symbol to gain power. By Dana Hercbergs Like mushrooms after the rain, the Tower of David seems to be popping up in new places in Jerusalem. Its appearance on phone books, municipal pamphlets, and items like sugar packets and votive candles strikes me as a phenomenon of the last few years, having lived in Jerusalem off and on since 2007. Local friends do not seem to think much of it, claiming that…

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  • Three Palestinian activists exiled from Jerusalem for five months

    Without explanation, three Jerusalemite Palestinians are given five-month bans from the city of their birth and residence. One is banned from the West Bank as well. Text and photos by: Ryan Rodrick Beiler/Activestills.org In early December, three Jerusalem-born Palestinians received orders from Israeli authorities banning them from the city for a period of five months. Majd Darwish, Saleh Dirbas and Daoud Al-Ghoul first received phone calls saying that they were banned from entering the Old City. When they reported to the police station as requested they were given military orders banning them from all of Jerusalem until April 30, 2015.…

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  • Elie Wiesel and Amos Yadlin congratulate East Jerusalem settlers

    Maj. Gen. (ret.) Amos Yadlin of the centrist think tank is among the signatories of an ad praising the Jewish settlers who entered 25 apartments in the Palestinian neighborhood of Silwan last week. 'By your act of settlement you make us all stand taller,' the ad reads. Yadlin and Wiesel serve on the public council of Elad, the organization behind the settlement in Silwan. One of the most dramatic settlement efforts in decades took place a couple of weeks ago, when 25 apartments in the Palestinian neighborhood Silwan, in East Jerusalem, were occupied by Jewish settlers. Silwan is the prize trophy…

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  • In Silwan, the settlers are winning - big time

    Seven years of struggle and Silwan’s residents can’t claim even one tangible and clear victory. Not one home has been returned to its original residents, not one settler has left and the police and Israeli authorities continue to target Palestinian residents. By Yonathan Mizrachi The East Jerusalem neighborhood of Silwan got its first-ever community center, Madaa, in October 2007. At the same time, a diverse group of activists, primarily Jerusalemites, began a number of types of actions and struggles for the future of the village of Silwan and, it must be said, for the future of the entire region. Among…

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  • Israel's very own tunnels of dread in Jerusalem

    While everyone is preoccupied with the Hamas tunnels in Gaza, Israel continues to dig under Palestinian houses in Jerusalem. The excuses are questionable, residents are angry and fearful, and a religious conflagration appears imminent. By Orly Noy With the Hamas tunnels dominating the Israeli narrative for the past several weeks, their inherent danger horrifying the entire state and sometimes leading to apocalyptic visions, the state of Israel persistently continued digging its own underground tunnels – in Jerusalem. These tunnels, like those of Hamas, are being dug under a heavy cloak of secrecy. As with the Hamas tunnels, they serve as…

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  • Exhibition on loan: How Israel's cultural institutions contribute to occupation

    Even if bringing the Herodium exhibit to the Israel Museum is not identical to wielding physical violence against Palestinians, it seems that in everything that pertains to the West Bank, those in charge exploit resources for their own needs, be it for exhibition or settlement expansion.  By Yonatan Mizrachi The exhibition “Herod the Great – The King’s Final Journey” is the largest archaeological exhibit ever showcased at the Israel Museum. In order to stage the exhibit, 30 tons of archaeological findings were transferred from the sites at Herodium and Jericho. The tremendous investment led to a successful portrayal of the…

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  • Tel Aviv University to cooperate with settler group on East Jerusalem dig

    Tel Aviv University's spokesperson refuses to explain why its archaeologists will work with Elad, an organization notorious for its pursuit of Jewish settlement in East Jerusalem. Haaretz reported on Thursday that Tel Aviv University's Institute of Archaeology plans to start digging in al-Bustan, located in the Palestinian neighborhood of Silwan in East Jerusalem, in cooperation with Elad, a private right-wing organization notorious for using the "City of David" National Park to further expand Israeli settlements in East Jerusalem. While a Tel Aviv University spokesperson told me they will be "cooperating strictly with the Israel Antiquities Authority," it is a well-known fact…

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  • Activist group opposes cultural events in City of David

    While I am not a member of the Sheikh Jarrah Solidarity Movement, I have been active with them and decided to post their appeal as I think it is an important cause and call to action By Silan Dallal and Ella Elbaz-Nir Under the misleading title “Israeli Culture at Heritage Sites” a series of musical performances sponsored by Israel’s Ministry of Culture commenced on August 11 at The City of David, a controversial “archeological site,” located in the heart of the Palestinian village of Silwan in East Jerusalem. These concerts are but another ploy in a long line of actions…

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  • WATCH: Palestinian youth abducted by police in E. Jerusalem

    While Israelis are busy pitching tents across the country, in the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Silwan, life under occupation goes on as usual, far away from the media's eyes. In the shocking footage below, taken with a surveillance camera last Friday, July 22, Palestinian teens playing soccer in the street are suddenly abducted by Israeli soldiers in an undercover vehicle and hauled away.  Whether guilty of stone throwing or not, this is not the way to go about conducting justice in a country's capital. As Sloveninan philosopher Slavoj Zizek has expressed many times, when there are no big headlines in…

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  • The "Religiousization" of the conflict in Jerusalem

    By Mairav Zonszein and Aziz Abu Sarah Crossposted from commongroundnews.org Jerusalem - Jerusalem, home to Christianity, Judaism and Islam – and highly significant to Palestinians and Israelis alike – continues to be a crucial focal point in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The Holy Basin in Jerusalem is home to some of the most sacred sites to all three religions, including the Western Wall, a remnant from the Second Temple and the holiest place in Judaism, and the Al-Aqsa Mosque, the third holiest site in Islam. Sovereignty, freedom of movement and the symbolism of the city are therefore very important to Palestinians…

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+972 is an independent, blog-based web magazine. It was launched in August 2010, resulting from a merger of a number of popular English-language blogs dealing with life and politics in Israel and Palestine.

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