The neighborhood of Batan al-Hawa is today the site of major friction and tensions between Palestinian residents, Jewish settlers and the massive security presence that accompanies them. But things weren’t always like this, and they don’t have to be. By Hussam Abed Try and imagine this: Jews move into a Palestinian village and are welcomed with open arms. They become part of the local economy, share in joyous occasions and sad ones, and together with their neighbors form a unique, rich human tapestry. The tensions are the same you’d find in any society: they are not shaped along the rigid…Read More... | 3 Comments
A new holiday was established by the binational, bilingual school kids at Neve Shalom Wahat al-Salam. We painted, cooked, built puppets and celebrated. Only the roar of aircraft on their way to Gaza brought a small reminder of reality. Please mark down May 7, 2016 as the first “Peace Holiday” - a new addition to the already crowded calendar of the binational, bilingual school of Wahat al-Salam – Neve Shalom. It is in the proximity of Holocaust Remembrance Day, Nakba Day, Independence Day, Land Day, Passover, Easter, Mimouna, Asraia and al-Miarg'. With grief and bereavement rituals, religious celebrations and festivals…Read More...
'Coexistence' in one of Israel's major mixed cities means Palestinian citizens must forget who they are, where they were born, and whom they were born to. By Zohar Elmakias Two eighth grade girls from Ramle's Juwarish neighborhood stabbed a security guard at the central bus station last Thursday. Following the incident, I thought a lot of about Ramle. I was born and raised there, and many of my family members still live in the city. Ramle is, for better or for worse, the landscape of my childhood, the place I always go back to. As a child, I participated in various…Read More... | 1 Comment
Years of failed coexistence projects between Jews and Palestinians, which were always intended to show Jews that we too are human beings, made me realize that enough is enough. By Muhammad Kabha Years of failed coexistence projects between Jews and Palestinians, which were always intended to show Jews that we too are human beings, brought me to the conclusion that enough is enough. On the day I first opened my eyes I met my dad’s Jewish friends. They were very nice. “Kiffi,” the blonde soldier who worked as a server in the wedding hall where my dad cooked, loved me.…Read More... | 3 Comments
Though every fifth Israeli citizen is Arab, most Jewish Israelis only know of them and their political thoughts and identity through the Israeli media, and only two polar opposite stereotypes are portrayed in the Hebrew media: the apolitical ‘good Arab’ and the terrorism-supporting ‘bad Arab.’ By Edan Ring Despite the fact that every fifth Israeli citizen is an Arab, media coverage of the most significant minority in the State of Israel is for the most part sparse and one dimensional. Only a small percentage of the interviews and reports in the various media outlets deal with the Arab population, and even…Read More... | 1 Comment
A controversial new television show gives us a glimpse into Jewish-Muslim relations before Israel's establishment, as well as a better understanding of those Jews who left Arab countries only to become Israel's Mizrahim. By Nadia Naser-Najjab A recent controversy over a new Egyptian television series has served to highlight one of the central tensions at the heart of Zionist thought. This controversy has arisen in relation to "Haret al-Yahud" ("The Jewish Quarter"), a love story which depicts a romantic relationship between a male Egyptian-Muslim army officer (Iyad Nassar) and a female Egyptian-Jewish character (Mena Shalaby). The series, which is being broadcast…Read More... | 1 Comment
For three decades the school at Neve Shalom/Wahat al-Salam has taught our children how to grow and become adults with a cohesive national and human identity, without fear of the other. Today, however, the future looks as uncertain as ever. (Translated from Hebrew by Rivka Einy) Atop a small mountain in the Latrun area lies the village we chose to establish a small family. Located between Tel Aviv and Jerusalem, the Arab-Jewish village goes by the name Neve Shalom/Wahat al-Salam. A few weeks ago, the village hosted an emotional and beautiful event to mark 30 years since the opening of the village school. All of…Read More... | 7 Comments
It's 2015 and Israeli peace groups still refuse to talk about the mass dispossession of Palestinians in 1948, including those who became Israeli citizens. Tom Mehager says it is time for a real conversation about the right of return. By Tom Mehager Israeli non-profit organizations that strive for a society based on coexistence most often focus on the most pressing issues vis-a-vis Jewish-Arab relations: educating toward democratic values, mutual recognition and teaching the Arabic language; equal allocation of resources and land; integration into the workforce and strengthening economic investment in Arab towns and villages; proper representation in decision-making processes; legitimacy for…Read More... | 17 Comments
The killing of a young Bedouin man from Rahat and the death of another during the funeral have deepened the city's lack of faith in the authorities. Only anti-racism education for police and young people alike can stop the landslide. By Kher Albaz The Or Commission, which investigated the shooting deaths of 13 Arab demonstrators in October 2000, found serious flaws in the Israeli police's actions against Arab citizens. The atmosphere within the Israeli police, then and apparently now, can be summed up by one sentence from the committee’s recommendations: “The police must implemented an approach that views Israeli Arabs…Read More... | 7 Comments
Yuval Ben-Ami and his gang are going where no man or woman has gone before: They are trying to produce a bilingual, bi-national album based on the songs of pop prodigy Lorde. The only problem: The gang itself is homogenous to the core. An insurmountable challenge? For the entire Israel-Palestine Lorde Diaries, click here. A week after our Yemenite feast, I met with Yaron to start working out the details. "I have a title for the EP," I told him, "I want it to be 'העונה לתספורת קצרה,' that's 'Buzzcut Season,' the name of one of Lorde's songs. I think…Read More...
The rally comes after three members of the group were arrested as suspects in the arson attack against a mixed Jewish-Arab school. Hundreds of people protested in West Jerusalem's Zion Square Saturday night against racism and called to outlaw Lehava, a racist, anti-misegenation group . Three of its members were charged several days ago with an arson attack against a mixed Jewish-Arab school two weeks ago. The protest was organized by a group of activists who identify as: "Jerusalem doesn't stay silent in the face of racism." Protesters held signs in Hebrew and Arabic that read "Stop the racism" and "Jews…Read More... | 13 Comments
The exposure of a popular 'co-existence' photo as a staged fabrication points to the need for better images of the path to a just peace. Text and photo by: Ryan Rodrick Beiler/Activestills.org A photograph intended to illustrate the peace process ended up being more accurate than intended. The now-iconic image showing a “Palestinian” and an Israeli boy walking arm in arm was a contrived set-up that anyone with experience in the region should have been able to spot as a fake. The popular photo recently showed up in a tweet by Rihanna after she posted — and then quickly deleted…Read More... | 24 Comments
If we who consider ourselves to be 'peacemakers' cannot identify the power dynamics within our own programs and events, then what we are doing at the end of the day does more harm than good for peace, justice, and those most marginalized in this relationship: Palestinians. By B.G. Silver* In our ever-growing jungle of protracted conflict and systemic injustice, there is an unquestionable need for inter-group reconciliation encounters between Israelis, Palestinians, and Palestinian-Israelis constructed with peacebuilding and human rights education. What is often missed is that peacebuilding and reconciliation are not simply the answer. They must and can only be…Read More... | 10 Comments
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