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hagar shezaf

  • Don’t wait for Israeli archives to prove what Palestinians already know

    Israeli authorities are deliberately concealing historical documents to undermine evidence of the state's dark and violent origins. And the world is still falling for it. The village of Safsaf (“willow” in Arabic) appears on page 490 of the newest edition of Walid Khalidi’s All That Remains, a seminal book that catalogues 418 Palestinian communities that were destroyed and depopulated during the Nakba. A Palestinian eyewitness account describes the day when Zionist forces conquered the village and rounded up its residents in October 1948: As we lined up, a few Jewish soldiers ordered four girls to accompany them to carry water for…

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  • The IDF is putting Palestinians on trial for Facebook posts

    Roughly 150 Palestinians have been put on trial in Israeli military courts for alleged incitement on Facebook. Now, the army and Shin Bet are having a hard time proving what incitement is, and often times just give up. Instead of releasing suspects as its own courts order, the army is putting them in administrative detention. By Hagar Shezaf In a small caravan that serves as a courtroom at the Israeli army’s Ofer Military Court, a boy in his late teens from the West Bank village of Silwad is standing trial on charges of incitement on online social networks. In the…

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  • How Israel outsources torture to its Palestinian subcontractor

    When the Palestinian Authority does Israel's dirty work, is it any surprise that so many Palestinians no longer differentiate between the two? By Hagar Shezaf As the latest wave of violence erupted, I drove to cover a demonstration in the West Bank city of Al-Bireh, adjacent to Ramallah. During one of my interviews, a 20-year-old man told me he and the rest of the protesters were rising up against the "regime." "Which regime?" we asked. "Both — they are the same thing," he said as he laughed and ran away. The notion that the Palestinian Authority and Israel are one…

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  • Eritrean man’s 'lynch' highlights failings of the Israeli press

    The Israeli media shares some responsibility for the hysteria on the streets and the phenomenon of ‘accidental’ attacks against Jews, Palestinians, and now Eritreans. By Hagar Shezaf Habtom Zerhom, an Eritrean asylum seeker, was shot by security forces and then lynched by Israelis in Beer Sheva’s bus station after being mistakenly identified as a terrorist on Sunday. Moments later, Habtom’s identity was revealed, leaving many puzzled: the man who was accused of being the second assailant in a deadly gun attack didn’t match the profile of those behind the latest round of violence between Palestinians and Israelis. The Eritrean community,…

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  • Following wave of protests, Israel arrests scores of Arab activists, minors

    Hundreds of Arab citizens of Israel have been detained in recent weeks, including dozens of minors. Abusive interrogations and preemptive arrests suggest that many of the tactics of occupation have crossed the Green Line. By Hagar Sheizaf (Translated by Ofer Neiman) The murder of Muhammed Abu Khdeir and the military onslaught in Gaza have brought about a wave of protest among Arab citizens of Israel. Reports on that wave should be supplemented by unprecedented data: more than 410 Arab citizens of Israel have been arrested on various grounds related to their participation in demonstrations since July 5, according to data provided…

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  • Former Black Panther jailed for running Mizrahi pirate radio

    Former Israeli Black Panther and 'godfather of Mizrahi music radio' Israel Bundak goes back to prison for running a pirate radio station. But what role did racism and cultural elitism play in his unprecedented prison sentence? By Hagar Shezaf Former Black Panther and 'godfather of Mizrahi music radio,' Israel Bundak, began serving a 50-day prison term on Sunday. His imprisonment will be the conclusion of an unprecedented 18-month prison sentence and NIS 25,000 (nearly $7,000) fine handed down in December 2009, for the establishment and operation of “Kol Hamizrach” (Voice of The East), a pirate radio station that played only…

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  • Searching for song and identity, from the Maghreb to the Negev

    Neta Elkayam, an upcoming artist and musician based in Jerusalem, tells the story of her multi-faceted identity and presents her own personal mixtape. Café Gibraltar sat down with Elkayam to discuss her experiences growing up in a southern Israeli development town, her life-changing trip to Morocco, and the power of North Africa’s female singers. By Hagar Shezaf and Khen Elmaleh Where are you from? I was born in Netivot, Israel. My experience has been one of a "southerner," although I spent the second half of my life wandering. I lived in Be'er Sheba's Dalet neighborhood, and then in the Hatikva…

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  • Israelis in Cairo: "We envy the Egyptian people"

    By Hagar Sheizaf and Bar Rose Two Israelis on holiday in Egypt were caught in the Cairo awakening. This is their report. ‪The Cairo pro-democratic demonstrations started on Wednesday at about 1:00pm. We were on our way to the Egyptian museum, and just happened to curiously stop by what later became one of the largest demonstrations ever held in Egypt; at that moment, it was quite a small gathering of people shouting anti-Mubarak slogans and about the same  amount of policemen gathering around them. At first, when we took our camera out, a man that was not taking part in…

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