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  • 14 Israeli citizens killed by police in five years, not a single indictment

    Over the past five years, police have shot dead 14 Israeli citizens. The department tasked with investigating the killings has closed all but two of the cases. Almost all the suspects were people of color. The police killing of 24-year-old Ethiopian-Israeli Yehuda Biadga last month sparked outrage among the Ethiopian community in Israel. Many believe that were it not for the color of his skin, he would still be alive today. Biadga, who suffered from PTSD as a result of his army service, was shot while wandering around his neighborhood in the city of Bat Yam while holding a knife.…

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  • 'To be Ethiopian in Israel is to be constantly struggling for something'

    The shooting of Yehuda Biadga reignited tensions between Israel’s Ethiopian community and police, who have long been accused of using a heavy hand against the country’s minorities. ‘Police brutality is a result of racism against black people in this country,’ Ziva Mekonen-Degu says. For the third time in as many years, thousands of Ethiopian citizens of Israel demonstrated against police violence this week. On Jan. 18, officers gunned down Yehuda Biadga, a 24-year old Israeli of Ethiopian background, who was wandering the streets of his neighborhood in the city of Bat Yam, just south of Tel Aviv. According to family…

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  • Benjamin Netanyahu is a fake supporter of democracy

    Israel's prime minister wants Iranian protesters to know they have his full support in their struggle against their government. The same can't be said about millions of people under his own government's rule.  Benjamin Netanyahu likes to present himself as a fervent supporter of democracy and pro-democracy protests. In fact he is a very selective advocate of democratic struggles, throwing his weight behind protests that align with his agenda even as he rejects those who protest ideas or institutions that undermine it. [tmwinpost] This week, for example, he expressed his admiration for anti-regime protestors in Iran who have been demonstrating…

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  • Between Ramle and Me: Reading Ta-Nehisi Coates in Hebrew

    Three activists, a Palestinian citizen of Israel, an Ethiopian Israeli, and a veteran Mizrahi organizer discuss the applicability of Ta-Nehesi Coates's 'Between the World and Me' to their struggles in Israel. The killing of black men by police in the United States has, over much of the past half-decade, thrust the issue of American racism back into the media spotlight. High-profile shootings of young, unarmed African-American men, such as Trayvon Martin and Michael Brown, were a sign that even the election of a black man to the highest office in the land could not eliminate what many view as an epidemic. [tmwinpost] Those…

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  • WATCH: Ethiopian-Israelis take struggle to the corridors of power

    Two years have passed since Ethiopian-Israelis took the streets to protest police brutality and widespread inequality. Now they are bringing their struggle to the Knesset, which recently marked a 'Day for Equality for Ethiopian Immigrants.' Members of Knesset, government officials, and social activists joined together to discuss discrimination in housing, budget allocation, higher education, and more. But will be enough to bring about the necessary change?

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  • PHOTOS: Hundreds call for release of Ethiopian-Israeli held in Gaza

    Hundreds gathered in Tel Aviv on Saturday to call for the release of Avera Mengistu, who has been missing in Gaza for 1,000 days. In nearby Petah Tikva, hundreds demonstrated against police brutality and threats to freedom of expression. Photos: Oren Ziv / Activestills (Tel Aviv), Orly Noy (Petah Tikva) Hundreds of people marched down Tel Aviv’s Rothschild Boulevard on Saturday evening in solidarity with Avera Mengistu, an Ethiopian-Israeli who entered Gaza in September 2014 and has been missing ever since. He is presumed to be in Hamas captivity. Marking 1,000 days since his disappearance, protesters wore t-shirts bearing his…

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  • Israeli police have a taser problem

    Out of over 180 complaints filed over taser use by police between 2014-2016, only 12 cases were actually investigated. Not a single officer was indicted. By Sapir Sluzker-Amran Yosef Salamsa was supposed to celebrate his 25th birthday last month. His tragic death, which took place several months after Israeli police tasseled him without any justification, did not lead to justice. The complaint filed with the Israel Police Investigation Unit was closed, as were dozens of other complaints over taser use, according to statistics [Hebrew] handed over by the Justice Ministry to the Association for Civil Rights in Israel (ACRI). [tmwinpost] In…

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  • The guide for leftists who want to stop preaching to the choir

    For years the Israeli Left has excluded the vast majority of the country from its ranks. Here are eight steps on how to broaden the tent.  By Noam Shuster-Eliassi Over the past several years, various writers and NGOs have finally come to the conclusion that the Israeli peace camp is on its death bed, and that along the way it has forgotten, well, everyone. Today many concede that over the years there formed an "alliance of the elites" between Israeli activists from Tel Aviv who leisurely met with activists from Ramallah. The members of this alliance headed delegations and took…

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  • WATCH: Using tourism to fight racism in Israel

    Earlier this year, the Coalition Against Racism led Israelis on a tour of the mixed city of Ramla. The tour took participants to Arab and Ethiopian neighborhoods, where along with two members of Knesset, they learned about the problems facing residents of minority and underprivileged areas. Can getting to know the Other really make a difference? Read more: One in every four Israelis experienced racism last year, poll finds There is nothing 'natural' about police racism The roots of anti-Mizrahi racism in Israel

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  • When a government shows more forgiveness to a rapist than a victim

    An ex-president who has been convicted of rape is released from prison early, despite showing no remorse. Meanwhile, a rape victim who killed his assailant in self-defense remains behind bars, denied clemency. By OR Seri On Sunday, Israeli President Reuven Rivlin announced that he had rejected a request for clemency for Yonatan Heilo. Heilo, an Ethiopian immigrant, has so far served six years in jail for killing his rapist, who had already assaulted him twice. He was originally charged with murder and sentenced to 20 years in prison; however, following an appeal to the Supreme Court, his conviction was reduced to manslaughter and…

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  • Pro-Israel and racist? Palestinians aren’t surprised in the slightest

    Though it may have sparked debate in the Jewish-American community, the idea that Israel can be a cause célèbre for white nationalists is hardly news to Palestinians, whose very existence vies with a state steeped in European, colonial racism. Since his appointment last week as chief White House strategist, sensationalist media maven Steve Bannon—whose editorial sensibilities have spawned such haute headlines as "Birth control makes women unattractive and crazy"—has become something of a lightning rod in the mainstream Jewish-American community. The Anti-Defamation League's Jonathan Greenblatt said his group opposed Bannon on grounds that the alt-right hero is "so hostile to core American values" while…

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  • There is nothing 'natural' about police racism

    Israel's police chief angered Israelis when he claimed it is 'natural' to suspect Ethiopians. But his remarks are simply a reflection of where Israeli society is at today. By Galia Boneh Police Chief Roni Alsheikh's recent comments, according to which it is "natural" for police to be suspicious of Ethiopian Israelis, stirred much controversy. They also lead to an important public discussion, exemplifying how structural racism works, and how racist acts in the name of public service gain legitimacy from the top echelon. In parallel, however, they also allowed the public to characterize Alsheikh as a racist, to renounce him…

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  • The Israelis Netanyahu will never meet

    Netanyahu's recent media blitz has left a group of wistful admirers among the journalists he met – the very same journalists who betrayed their constituents, the millions of poor, sick and powerless people Netanyahu doesn't give a damn about. By Yael Marom Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's still unexplained media blitz, in which he spent dozens of hours in off-the-record meetings with leading Israeli journalists, turned some of his most ferocious critics into wistful admirers. One journalist after another wrote lengthy columns and Facebook posts, in which they offered their insight into the complex personality of the man they had rarely, if…

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