Analysis News
Visit our Hebrew site, "Local Call" , in partnership with Just Vision.

Gilad Shalit

  • Israel kills three top Hamas commanders in Gaza

    At least 34 Palestinians were killed Thursday when the Israeli air force bombed Gaza for a second day after a temporary ceasefire broke down and negotiators failed to reach a ceasefire agreement. While the fate of Hamas military chief Mohammed Deif remains unknown after Israel attempted to assassinate him, and consequently killed his wife and two young children, the Israeli military confirmed that it had killed three top Hamas commanders, Raed Attar, Mohammed Abu Shamaleh and Mohammed Barhoum, in Rafah. Attar and Abu Shamaleh are thought to both have been involved in the 2006 Gilad Shalit kidnapping. Israel's Shin Bet also believes that…

    Read More... | 4 Comments
  • Palestinians continue to create life from death

    Gaza’s injuries have provoked every Palestinian and created in us the desire for all Palestinians to live in unity in our lands occupied since 1948.  By Badia Dweik I was unable to recognize him from the photos I saw on social media sites. Neither could I recognize him from the hospital photos that showed him dead. I went to his funeral after Friday prayers, where thousands had gathered. Suddenly I saw a poster and on it the martyr's name, Nader Mohamed Idriss. I was surprised, since I had seen him only a few days before in the exact place where he…

    Read More... | 10 Comments
  • This is a war of choice. Netanyahu's choice

    Netanyahu is no hero, and the tragedy is our own. Prime Minister Netanyahu fired Deputy Defense Minister Danny Danon on Tuesday, after the latter criticized Netanyahu for holding fire, and even called him "a lefty," which is probably the worst thing you can say to someone in the current political atmosphere. Sacking Danon is not a risky move (Danon is a far-right politician with little parliamentary support), but firing him helped Netanyahu present himself as “moderate” and “restrained” leader. Yossi Verter says similar things in Haaretz, as does Ron Ben-Yishai in Ynet; even I wrote a few good things about this aspect of Bibi's…

    Read More... | 14 Comments
  • Why Israel's response to the kidnappings feels awfully familiar

    If the past is any gauge of what's to come, things are not looking good in the West Bank - neither for the Palestinians who remain under occupation there, nor for the three missing teenagers. From a Haaretz report: The Israel Defense Forces plans to arrest additional senior Hamas officials. Yesterday security forces arrested 65 key members of Hamas' political wing in an early-morning operation in East Jerusalem and the West Bank. Among those arrested were eight ministers of the Hamas government who reside in the West Bank, and 20 members of the Palestinian Legislative Council. The mayor of the town…

    Read More... | 17 Comments
  • Putting a halt to the 'assembly line' of Palestinian prisoners

    Rather than arguing over the 'gestures' of releasing long-term prisoners, Israel must use restraint during arrests in the West Bank, while ensuring fair and swift procedures in the military courts. (Translated by Ofer Neiman) One of the main factors behind the failure of the recent round of Israeli-Palestinian talks was Israel's decision to cancel the release of 26 Palestinian prisoners, which had been agreed upon as a goodwill gesture to the Palestinian Authority. The issue of prisoner release, whether in the framework of negotiations or in the framework of prisoner exchange deals, touches on very strong sentiments on both sides. For…

    Read More... | 8 Comments
  • What went wrong? Learning from the mistakes of Oslo

    Can Israeli, Palestinian and American negotiators learn from their mistakes in order to bring about a peaceful resolution to the conflict? New negotiations offer hope like a quarter-drop of water splashed onto scorched and desiccated earth. How quickly such a drop can be absorbed as if it never was, and ground into the dust by the overwhelming forces of failure. Once, hope went beyond a drop: in 1993, the Oslo Accords were a shining symbol of progress. After years of despair and death, it has become synonymous with failure for many. Yet it is the only model for agreements actually…

    Read More... | 11 Comments
  • Hunger-striker Samer Issawi is another statistic in an unjust legal system

    Unlike Prisoner X, there is no public outrage in Israel over the way the legal system is preventing Samer Issawi from receiving a fair trial. But then again, Issawi is Palestinian. Samer Issawi, the Palestinian prisoner who has been on an intermittent hunger strike for over 200 days, had his day in court on Thursday. According to the sentence handed down by the Jerusalem Magistrate’s Court, one might ostensibly believe that Issawi would be released on March 6, when his prison term is completed. But Samer Issawi is Palestinian, and therefore subject to a multi-layered legal system in which his…

    Read More... | 10 Comments
  • Weeks after prisoner strike ends, Israel not holding up its end of deal

    New report by Israeli and Palestinian human rights NGOs shows that Israel is not meeting the conditions to which it agreed in a deal to end a massive hunger strike almost two months ago. Three Palestinians are still on strike, one in mortal danger. Fed with lies? Almost eight weeks have passed since some 1,550 Palestinian prisoners ended their collective hunger strike in exchange for a series of steps to better their conditions, promised by Israel. Yet a new report recently published by Physicians for Human Rights, Al-Haq, Adalah, Addameer and other NGOs shows that the state has neglected to…

    Read More... | 11 Comments
  • All signs point to Israel's weak democracy

    The assassination of Zuhair al-Qaissi, which sparked the escalation in the south, points to Israel's weak Supreme Court, a lack of transparency and accountability, and the state's flip attitude towards its judicial branch--as do some street signs in Tel Aviv The recent escalation between Israel and Gaza began after Israeli forces assassinated Zuhair al-Qaissi, a leader of the Popular Resistance Committees (PRC), a militant group composed of members of various Palestinian parties. Haaretz noted that the PRC was "the organisation that captured Gilad Shalit", the Israeli soldier who was freed in October 2011. The army says that al-Qaissi was behind the August 2011…

    Read More... | 51 Comments
  • Noam Schalit - instead of Knesset, go home

    It's not enough that for years, Israeli society dropped everything it was doing and ultimately risked people's lives to bring Noam Schalit's son home. Now he wants Israeli voters to send him to the Knesset. The whole Gilad Schalit saga was so weird, so unnatural, so out of proportion - why didn't we all just commit mass suicide to show how much we cared about him? - and now it's gotten plain disgusting. Noam Schalit is running for Knesset, on the Labor Party ticket. It's not enough that an entire country basically dropped everything for this guy's son, for this guy himself - it's not enough that countless victims…

    Read More... | 23 Comments
  • Freed Palestinian prisoner recounts torture in Israeli jails

    Mukhlis Burghal is one of the Palestinian prisoners who was exchanged for Israeli soldier Gilad Schalit. His experience in Israeli jails points to the state's disregard for prisoners' human rights The Alternative Information Center has an in-depth interview with Mukhlis Burghal, one of the Palestinian prisoners who was freed in exchange for Gilad Schalit. Speaking to an European journalist who goes by the nom de plume Mikaela Levin, Burghal, who spent 24 years in Israeli prisons for throwing a grenade at a bus full of Israeli soldiers, says, [The] initial questioning is one of the most difficult moments... My head…

    Read More... | 16 Comments
  • Dual US-Israeli citizen held in Egypt released

    Coming on the heels of last week's prisoner swap, Egyptian authorities have released to Israel 27-year-old Ilan Grapel, suspected in Cairo of having spied on Israel's behalf. Some two dozen Egyptians held in Israel were released in exchange. The only image much of the world saw of 27-year-old Ilan Grapel over the past four months was that of a tall, slightly pale, sunglass-wearing young man standing amid a crowd of Egyptians, pursing his lips in Cairo's Tahrir Square. The dual national American-Israeli was picked up by Egyptian authorities in June of this year on suspicion of spying for the Jewish…

    Read More... | 2 Comments
  • This government WANTS Hamas for its "partner"

    Mahmoud Abbas' popularity in the West is a headache for Benjamin Netanyahu. It's no wonder he'd rather do business with Hamas If I were Bibi Netanyahu, that’s what I’d want. I’d say to myself: “Mahmoud Abbas is a pain in the neck, he’s popular with the West, he makes Israel look bad – he cooperates with us and we don’t cooperate with him, so he goes to the UN and makes us look bad. Puts pressure on me to do things I don’t want to do and couldn’t do even if I wanted to, which I don’t. But Hamas? Hamas…

    Read More... | 11 Comments