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  • Amona's evacuation is no victory

    After over a decade of legal battles, the state was finally forced to evacuate the illegal West Bank outpost of Amona. But that does not mean we should start celebrating any time soon. I'll admit it: I feel a certain sense of satisfaction watching the evacuation of Amona, the illegal West Bank outpost built on what used to be Khalt al-Sultan. The attempt to force ourselves to empathize with the evacuees who lost their homes is both morally delusional and, in a sense, manipulates our collective conscience. [tmwinpost] The settlers of Amona did not lose their homes, rather they gave…

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  • When the High Court has to intervene so a Palestinian family can mourn

    After Israeli police shot and killed Yaqub Musa Abu al-Qi'an before demolishing his home, the state held onto his body for nearly a week. Only an appeal to the High Court allowed his family to bury their loved one. The only way to describe what took place on Monday in Israel's High Court, during a hearing on a petition by the Abu al-Qi'an family demanding the police release the body of Yaqub Musa Abu al-Qi'an, is as a nerve-racking drama. For three hours, those present in the courthouse — police officials on one side, and members of the Abu al-Qi'an…

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  • Israel's surefire way of keeping its citizens in the dark

    The Israeli establishment used to rely on the IDF Censor to make sure the media didn't ask questions. Nowadays it uses court-sanctioned gag orders. By Shuki Tausig Did you hear about…and about…or what about…how could you have missed that? After all, we are talking about newsworthy events, the kind that open the 8 o'clock news. So how come you didn't hear about them? [tmwinpost] You didn't hear about them because the police/Shin Bet/some other body rushed to ask the court to issue a gag order on the attack/investigation/affair. The courts usually serve as a rubber stamp in these cases, especially in cases when…

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  • Almost a year later, Israel still refuses to return Palestinian bodies

    Palestinian rights groups call decision to hold onto the bodies of 13 Palestinian attackers and alleged attackers a 'violation of the right to dignity.' Since beginning of recent wave of violence, over 220 Palestinians have been shot dead by Israeli security forces. For 300 days Israel has been holding onto the frozen body of Tha’er Abu Ghazaleh, one of 13 East Jerusalem Palestinian attackers and alleged attackers whose bodies Israeli authorities, since October, are refusing to return to their families for burial. [tmwinpost] In mid-October 2015, the Israeli security cabinet decided to stop its practice of returning bodies immediately to the deceased’s families.…

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  • Israel's extremist settlers are aiming for the mainstream

    The fact that this year's Jerusalem Day did not include violence and racist chants against Palestinians signals a change of strategy in winning the hearts and minds of average Israelis. The main lesson I learned from Jerusalem Days past was to wear comfortable walking shoes. Or preferably running shoes, since I previously learned that there is no way to know what causes police on horseback to charge into and disperse Palestinian crowds out of the enclosures put up around Damascus Gate, into which they were corralled in the first place. [tmwinpost] Without a doubt Jerusalem Day is the most tense…

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  • The Palestinian village that refuses to give up on popular struggle

    Even after 11 years of struggle, the residents of Bil'in refuse to forget about the land that was taken from them. The year was 2006. The village Bil'in near Ramallah had already marked over a year of weekly protests against the separation barrier that cuts them off from their land. One day, during a hearing at the High Court of Justice over a petitioned against the route of the wall, Justice Aharon Barak wondered aloud: "Why do they protest there so often?" [tmwinpost] Nearly 11 years have passed since the residents of this small village decided they wanted to oppose…

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  • High Court approves detention of asylum seekers without charge, but only for 12 months

    The High Court of Justice capitulates to the threats of Israel's right wing and approves the prolonged detention of asylum seekers. By Haggai Matar Israel's High Court of Justice approved on Tuesday the third and latest version of the Prevention of Infiltration Law, after it struck down the two previous versions passed by the Knesset. In doing so, the justices have approved the law, which would see asylum seekers who reached the country temporarily jailed for three months, while limiting imprisonment at the Holot detention center — for all asylum seekers — for a period of a year, rather than…

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  • WATCH: Israel demolishes homes in unrecognized Palestinian village

    Bulldozers knocked down three buildings in the village Dahmash, just 20 minutes from Tel Aviv, contrary to a High Court ruling.  By Rami Younis and Haggai Matar Israeli bulldozers demolished three structures in the unrecognized Palestinian village Dahmash, near Lyd (Lod in Hebrew) on Wednesday morning. The demolition took place despite both a High Court decision that called for a mutual agreement and a demand by the Lod District Court that the State delay its demolition plans. The homes were uninhabited at the time of the demolition. [tmwinpost] The demolition began at 4 a.m. and was accompanied by a large…

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  • High Court to rule over fate of unrecognized Palestinian village

    The village of Dahmash has been around since 1948, and its residents have the documents to prove it. The authorities, however, have been threatening the unrecognized village with demolition for years. Now residents are taking matters into their own hands and putting together a festival to bring attention to their cause. On Monday, March 16 — a day before the national elections — Israel's High Court of Justice will hear an appeal by the residents of the unrecognized village Dahmash. The village, located between Ramle and Lyd ("Lod" in Hebrew), is not recognized by any local council. The hearing could…

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  • High Court greenlights racial profiling at Israel's airports

    High Court rejects petition calling for an end to racial profiling against Arabs at Ben-Gurion Airport, yet refuses to make a principled ruling on the policy as a whole. Israel's High Court of Justice rejected a petition by the Association for Civil Rights in Israel (ACRI), demanding an end to racial profiling at Ben-Gurion Airport on Wednesday. The petition — which the Association for Civil Rights in Israel filed in 2007 against the Shin Bet, the Transportation Ministry and the Israel Airports Authority — sought to eliminate the category of "Arab nationality" as a criteria for conducting special security checks in the…

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  • The fraud of Gush Etzion, Israel's mythological settlement bloc

    Destroyed by Arab armies during the 1948 War, Gush Etzion was repopulated after Israel occupied the West Bank in 1967. Since then, successive Israeli governments have done everything they can to expand the area of the mythological bloc, while settling Israelis on privately-owned Palestinian land.  By Hillel Bardin and Dror Etkes All American children learn the battle cry, “Remember the Alamo!” at some point in their schooling. The story of the Alamo starts in 1836, when white colonists began settling in northern Mexico. They finally drove the Mexican army out, but the army eventually returned and slaughtered all the whites in the…

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  • High Court: State can continue restricting Mordechai Vanunu's freedoms

    Nearly 11 years after he was released from an 18-year prison sentence for leaking information on Israel's top-secret nuclear program, Mordechai Vanunu is still prevented from doing just about anything an average citizen can.  Three High Court justices ruled earlier this week that Israeli nuclear whistleblower Mordechai Vanunu will able allowed extremely limited contact with foreign nationals, despite allowing the Israeli government to continue and limit almost all of his freedoms. Nearly a decade after his release from prison, where he sat for 18 years for leaking secrets about Israel's nuclear weapons program, Vanunu is still unable to leave the country;…

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  • How the very concept of human rights has failed Palestinians

    Certain rights should be inalienable — yet Israel refuses to grant them to Palestinians and the world continues to treat the country as a rights-based democracy. What does this absurdity say about human rights as a political tool, and about the powers, entities and institutions that speak in their name? Knesset Constitution, Law and Justice Committee chairman MK David Rotem laid out some of his beliefs and world views in an extensive interview with Israeli financial daily Globes a few weeks ago. One of Rotem’s statements – which made the headline of the piece - was that “human rights are [reserved]…

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