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  • Religion out, nationalism in: Will Hamas' charter divide the movement?

    Hamas new 'Document of Principles' ditches Islamism for frank positions on borders, international law, and human rights. But can the movement maintain unity as it inches closer to the ideas held by its rivals in the PLO? By Menachem Klein (translated by Philip Podolsky) Hamas' recently-revised charter, titled "Document of General Principles and Policies" sees the group go down a path that could eventually result in its fracturing. Once it chose to depart from the simplistic and monolithic guidelines of the Islamic Charter, it had no choice but to acknowledge the ideological differences that drive the movement's leadership apart (as do the inevitable power…

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  • Dear Arab men, leave us women out of your holy wars

    An Arab teacher was recently attacked and fired for screening an 'immodest' film for his students, all in the name of protecting women's 'honor.' This is the kind of article I am hesitant to publish in Hebrew or English. But out of my wholehearted belief that there are Jews in this world who can be part of our struggle, I decided to air our dirty laundry in other languages, after hanging it out to dry in Arabic here. [tmwinpost] The story about Ali Muasi, the teacher from Baqa al-Gharbiya, has already made headlines. Muasi was fired for screening the much-heralded…

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  • In Israel's democracy, dissent has always been off limits to Arab citizens

    The banning of the northern branch of the Islamic Movement may seem like a new low, but a closer look at history reveals how the state has been at war with Palestinian political organizations since its very inception. Israel’s Palestinian citizens have never had an easy time organizing politically. The government’s decision to outlaw the northern branch of the Islamic Movement is only the latest — and perhaps most significant — example of the hurdles Arab citizens must face in their struggle for equality. The state has been pushing for the ban for years, accusing the organization of maintaining links…

  • Longing for Jewish-Muslim co-existence in Morocco

    Kamal Hachkar's film, 'Echoes From the Mellah,' looks at Morocco's history, which not long ago included Jews and Muslims living together in peaceful co-existence, and serves as an important resource for building a vision of a shared Jewish-Palestinian existence. By Ronit Chacham (translated by Noam Benishei) The January 6 screening of Kamal Hachkar’s "Tinghir-Jerusalem: Echoes From the Mellah," at the opening of Doc Aviv Festival in Yeruham, and the following screening at Ben-Gurion University, were first and foremost an opportunity to broach a subject that is at the heart of our lives: Muslim-Jewish relations. This time, however, it was done through…

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  • Autoxenophobia: The 'demographic threat' goes worldwide

    The real demographic balance that should worry liberal, humanist, open and progressive people is the number of xenophobes in our society, rather than the number of people with beards, skullcaps or hijabs. By Dubi Kanengisser When I lived in Toronto, I used to jokingly exclaim "man, I hate those immigrants." Like all jokes, this had a grain of truth in it. It is easy to latch onto the obvious differences of "visible minorities" and extrapolate from one member to the entire group. We all have a little racist inside that we must overcome. But there are Israelis living abroad whose xenophobia…

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  • Letter from a Pakistani blogger

    Over the last few months, I have engaged in a series of conversations with Pakistani writers and academics through mutual friends. These talks have been a rare and fascinating opportunity to see their country through their eyes rather than through Western media sources. We've discovered some surprising common concerns and a mutual desire to stay in touch. We would like to write posts  occasionally for one another so that our audiences can share these understandings as well. The following is an introduction by Abdul, one of the participants, who writes his own blog tackling the stories of Pakistan that are…

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  • Are Israelis Middle Eastern?

    How foreign to the Martian soil is the NASA vessel that just landed there? About as foreign as Israel considers itself to be from the Middle East at large. At least this is the sense one gets recently from observing our inner discourse over the events in Egypt, Tunisia and elsewhere. Most of the talk in Israel today is fearful talk. We discuss how the lion in whose den we're trapped is bound to turn on us as soon as it completes its conversion to fundamentalist Islam. Seldom do we take the advice of the Talmudic sages and evaluate where…

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