Israel is not interested in democracy as a value. On the contrary — it has a great deal of interest in making sure it keeps bearing the title of 'the only democracy in the Middle East.' While many Palestinians were perturbed by the death of Egypt's former president, Mohamed Morsi, and Knesset members of four of the Arab parties called for an investigation of the circumstances of his death, official Israel ignored Morsi’s death almost entirely. The only thing that Israel was interested in, in that regard, is the question of whether the government in Cairo can “handle the challenge,” meaning, whether…Read More... | 13 Comments
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas declares major protests across the occupied Palestinian territories next week to coincide with the Bahrain workshop. By Ahmad Al-Bazz Dozens of Palestinian activists and political representatives marched against the U.S. “Deal of the Century” and the upcoming Bahrain workshop in Ramallah city center on Saturday. Protesters held Palestinian flags and signs condemning the American administration and the involvement of Arab countries — especially Bahrain, for hosting the workshop. Scheduled for June 25-26 in Manama City, the event is billed as a gathering to boost the Palestinian economy. “Peace comes by ending the occupation, not by illusions…Read More... | 1 Comment
As Israelis go out to enjoy barbecues and fireworks, I will be fasting in solidarity with the Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike, and the millions of Palestinians who live under occupation. By Adi Golan Bikhnafo On Tuesday, as the smell of barbecued meat and fireworks envelops Tel Aviv, I will be fasting in Jaffa’s Clock Square, drinking only salt water. I’m taking this action in solidarity with the Palestinian prisoners who have been on hunger strike for the last two weeks, and with the millions of Palestinians who live under occupation in the West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza. [tmwinpost]…Read More... | 7 Comments
Abed al-Karim Abu Haloub has been in a coma in Gaza for over 40 days, requiring treatment in the West Bank. Israel repeatedly refused to allow him to leave. Israeli authorities repeatedly refused to allow a Palestinian man from the Gaza Strip to receive medical treatment in the West Bank, denying his travel permit on security grounds, despite the fact that he has been in a coma for over a month. [tmwinpost] Physicians for Human Rights—Israel (PHR) attempted to intervene on the Abed al-Karim Abu Haloub's behalf, twice appealing the decision to reject his permit request to no avail. The fact that…Read More... | 1 Comment
Beaten, tortured, and shot to death: this is the story of five Arab boys who met a gruesome fate at the hands of Israel's security forces in September 1961. Ben Gurion's government refused to tell the truth of what really happened. By Makbula Nassar Last week marked 60 years since the Kafr Qasim massacre. Although the event is seared into our collective consciousness, it was not the only horrendous crime committed by Israeli security forces against innocent Arab citizens during the dark days of the military government, which lasted from 1949 until 1966. September marked 55 years since the mysterious deaths of George…Read More... | 3 Comments
The 1956 Sinai War was Israel’s first war as an established state, and followed eight years of hints at the possibility of peace. In the eyes of its Arab neighbors, the ’56 war aligned Israel with the former colonial powers, setting the stage for decades of hostility and war. “The military attack on Egypt caused Israel unfathomable damage to its international status and security. The operation presented Israel to the entire world as an aggressor. It also presented Israel at the forefront of international colonialism in the Middle East. The attack on Egypt blocked the road to peace with the Arab…Read More... | 3 Comments
Bonds with Israel cannot guarantee long-term stability of a regime that is not based on popular support and relies on oppression to maintain its rule. By Itay Mack (translated by Tal Haran) Egypt's foreign minister’s first visit to Israel in nine years, and his meeting to discuss an Egypt-backed peace initiative with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu should not have come as such a surprise. Even the recent appointment of Avigdor Lieberman, the same person who called for the bombing of the Aswan Dam, as minister of defense, could not prevent this visit. [tmwinpost] Both sides urgently need a fictitious initiative. Netanyahu wants to try and halt the…Read More... | 1 Comment
Recent interest — by all sides — in reviving the Arab Peace Initiative presents a new window of opportunity. But let's not get too far ahead of ourselves as long as Benjamin Netanyahu is in charge. Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry came to Israel on Sunday to meet with Benjamin Netanyahu about the Palestinian peace process, the first such visit in nearly 10 years. Egypt, which until the 2011 revolution was a regular partner in American-led peace efforts, appears to be making a move to reassert its leadership in the region, and perhaps take advantage of a temporary vacuum of…Read More...
Even when they had reached the borders of the Promised Land, after 40 years in the desert, all the Children of Israel wanted was to go back to Egypt. In Erez Biton's poem, the immigrant from Algeria and his son fail to build a home in Israel. Independence Day is also the tale of the rift in our identity, created by immigrating here. By Mati Shemoelof "And the children of Israel said unto them: ‘Would that we had died by the hand of the LORD in the land of Egypt, when we sat by the flesh-pots, when we did eat bread…Read More...
The fact that the head of Israel's opposition could soon join forces with Netanyahu may actually bode well for the Israeli Left and Palestinian citizens alike. The Israeli media has been beside itself this week with the possibility that the head of the opposition Isaac Herzog, leader of the Labor Party cum Zionist Union, may join Prime Minister Netanyahu’s governing coalition, the executive branch of the Israeli government. Roughly two weeks of chatterbuzz about Herzog-Netanyahu negotiations have yielded the usual five stages of rumors: from denial (“there are no negotiations”); to low expectations (“they’re just talks, they won’t lead to…Read More... | 1 Comment
Two intifadas increased Israeli willingness to make territorial withdrawals. Wars in Lebanon and Egypt led Israel to withdrawals from those territories. Despite all that, the Palestinian Authority is trying to maintain quiet and security for Israelis but receives nothing in return. If I were Palestinian I might come to a disturbing conclusion. One axiom of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is that Palestinian violence pushes the Jewish public rightward. Due to violence, common wisdom goes, the willingness of Israeli Jews to make concessions or compromise decreases, and Palestinian independence or equality becomes more of a pipe dream. Only refraining from violence will…Read More... | 4 Comments
Now that the Iran nuclear deal has been implemented, the Islamic Republic, Egypt and others are likely to make a much more serious push for a nuclear-free Middle East. And Israel is in a much tighter spot than ever before. By Shemuel Meir A sigh of relief was heard in the corridors of Israel’s security establishment and Prime Minister Netanyahu’s office in May 2015. Its cause: Israel’s success in fending off and foiling a proposed resolution put forward by Egypt at the NPT Review Conference to establish a nuclear-weapon-free Middle East. Prime Minister Netanyahu sent President Obama a special thank…Read More...
A new Palestinian PR campaign attempts to recast the conflict by comparing Israeli violence against Palestinians to methods used by Islamic State. By Jacob Wirtschafter CAIRO — Eager to re-enlist Egyptian public opinion to their cause, the Palestinian Embassy in Cairo hosted a rare press conference Thursday outlining Ramallah’s current diplomatic agenda. The agenda includes a definitive UN Security Council resolution with a timeline for two states, deployment of international forces to protect the population of the West Bank, and an international fact-finding mission to determine the “root causes” of the current phase of the conflict. [tmwinpost] It’s a hard…Read More... | 3 Comments
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