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Jerusalem

  • Activists shut down traffic on new West Bank 'apartheid road'

    Activists say the highway, which separates Israeli and Palestinian traffic with an 26-foot concrete wall, will 'strengthen Israeli rule, including by shutting out entire Palestinian areas.' Dozens of Palestinian, Israeli, and international activists Wednesday morning blocked a highway many have dubbed the “apartheid road,” Route 4370 in the occupied West Bank, which separates Israeli and Palestinian traffic with an 26-foot concrete wall. [tmwinpost] The activists managed to shut down the highway for 20 minutes before Israeli Border Police officers suppressed the demonstration with stun grenades and arrested two. One side of the road, which stretches between Route 437 and Route 1 just…

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  • Israel's new 'apartheid road' is about more than just segregation

    Israel claims the new road, which separates Israelis and Palestinians by an eight-meter wall, alleviates traffic for settlers while helping Palestinians travel around the West Bank. Human rights activists say it will help create Israeli-only enclaves free of any Palestinian presence.  Israel unveiled a new segregated highway in the occupied West Bank last week, with a giant eight-meter concrete wall separating Palestinian and Israeli drivers on either side. Labeled the apartheid road by critics, Route 4370’s official reasoning is to alleviate traffic for Israeli settlers commuting to Jerusalem, as well as creating a new way for Palestinians to travel between the northern and…

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  • When the occupation dictates your life — and your funeral

    Long before he died in a work accident on an Israeli construction site, Muhamad Barghouth's life was dictated by the violent whims of military occupation.  By Aviv Tatarsky Last month, the grandson of a very close friend of mine was killed. Muhamad Bargouth, 22, whose grandfather I have grown close to in my many visits to the Palestinian village of Walajeh over the years, was killed in an accident at an Israeli construction site not all that far from his family home. Accidents can happen. But Muhamad's death was more than accident: his life was marked by the violence Israel's occupation visited…

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  • We told ourselves we weren't settlers. We were something different

    In the Jerusalem neighborhood of Pisgat Ze'ev, we didn't think of ourselves as settlers, despite the fact that we lived beyond the Green Line and our neighbors were Palestinian.  By Ofer Matan The first Arab who stepped into our home was Sabah. The first time we met, Sabah washed his hands in our kitchen sink on a cold morning after the Jewish holidays, just before he helped my mother start her yellow Renault 12. The car already had problems with the gears by the early 80s, and Sabah would push it from behind toward the decline while she put it…

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  • ‘This is how you change the status quo’: Rethinking the Palestinian boycott of Jerusalem elections

    Aziz Abu Sarah withdrew his historic bid for Jerusalem mayor after Israeli and Palestinian pressures, but he hopes his short campaign ‘provokes’ new ideas on how to build stronger, younger Palestinian political activism in the city. Less than a month after declaring his candidacy to become the first Palestinian mayor of Jerusalem, Aziz Abu Sarah – a 38-year-old activist, social entrepreneur, and former +972 contributor – announced that he and his slate of candidates, “Al-Quds Lana” (“Our Jerusalem”), would be withdrawing from both the mayoral and city council races, which are scheduled for late October. [tmwinpost] In a post on…

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  • The Oslo era is finally over, but it only gets worse from here

    In theory, the end of Oslo should be a welcome development. In practice, there is little to celebrate. There is something unsettling about the way the 25-year anniversary since the signing of the Oslo Accords is being marked — neither eulogy nor longing, and without anyone having any clue what lies ahead. There is one thing that is different this year, however. With the exception of Jason Greenblatt, nobody is paying lip service to the illusion of a peace process any more. [tmwinpost] In theory, that should be a welcome development. The Oslo process and the legacy it left on…

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  • 20,000 take part in largest ever Jerusalem Pride March

    Under heavy security, 20,000 members of the LGBTQ community and their supporters march in Jerusalem, three years after a religious extremist stabbed 15-year-old Shira Banki during the parade. Photos by Oren Ziv/Activestills.org Tens of thousands of members of the LGBTQ community and their supporters took part in the largest ever Jerusalem Pride March on Thursday. The event, which began in the afternoon in Jerusalem's Liberty Bell Park and ended in Independence Park, took place under heavy police security, three years after the stabbing of 15-year-0ld Shira Banki at the hands of an ultra-Orthodox Jewish man during the march. A number of leading LGBTQ activists took…

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  • Tisha B’Av and the mainstreaming of the Temple discourse

    The further Israel moves from a solution to the conflict, the more it finds itself in need of the symbols of the religious right. As long as liberal Israelis do not fully renounce the sanctification of blood and land, they will be unable to present a real alternative.   By Yudith Oppenheimer I have not adhered to halakha in my daily life for years now, but in spite of this I do fast on Tisha B’Av. I am often asked if I am mourning the destruction of the Temple and the answer is both yes and no. Yes, I identify with the…

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  • How Childish Gambino explains the problem with Israel’s Eurovision win

    Gambino's new music video illustrates why audiences should focus on the injustices unfolding in the background of artistic performances – especially those representing the state. In the music video for his new single “This is America,” the singer and rapper Childish Gambino (Donald Glover) dances in a warehouse while scenes of violence and chaos unfold around him. Among other messages, the video is a reflection of how art can be used to distract people's attention from the brutal realities faced by Black Americans and other people of color in the United States. Gun murders, police sirens, running youths, and other…

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  • Why the Jerusalem embassy opening was a fitting way to mark the Nakba

    Both the U.S. and Israeli governments are run by racist demagogues who simultaneously deny an occupation exists while doing all they can to perpetuate it.  Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat believes that East Jerusalem Palestinians are “satisfied” with the move of the U.S. Embassy to their city. Speaking to Israeli news website Ynet on Sunday, as the Israeli side of Jerusalem was preparing for a mass celebration in honor of the transfer, Barkat suggested that deep down, Palestinians understood that having the embassy on their doorstep would improve their quality of life. Barkat’s reasoning is, on the one hand, simply a variation on the racist idea that…

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  • Forget the Kotel, Amb. Friedman. Go see Jerusalem's Palestinian ghetto

    Instead of going to the Kotel, go to the Palestinian neighborhoods of East Jerusalem and to the ghettos encircled by the separation wall. You will see a very different Jerusalem than the one you idealize. By Yudith Oppenheimer Dear Ambassador Friedman, Since your appointment as U.S. ambassador to Israel, you have exhibited a great deal of interest in Jerusalem, undoubtedly an expression of your genuine love of the city. Unfortunately, as we all know too well, love alone is never enough. [tmwinpost] In the spirit of full disclosure, let me state that Ir Amim, together with Israeli residents of Arnona,…

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  • Asylum seekers to Israel's president: 'Look us in the eyes'

    Israel plans to begin deporting tens of thousands of Eritrean and Sudanese asylum seekers in the coming months. Hundreds gather outside the President's Residence in Jerusalem, hoping to tell him their stories. By Yael Marom Several hundred asylum seekers from Eritrea and Sudan demonstrated in front of Israeli President Rivlin’s official residence in Jerusalem Monday night, calling on him to stop planned mass deportations. The asylum seekers, including many women and children, were joined by dozens of Jewish Israelis, among them several Holocaust survivors. [tmwinpost] The demonstrators chanted “we are refugees,” “refugees don’t deport refugees,” and “the deportations are a…

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  • There is no status quo, only Greater Israel

    Netanyahu's party and government are finally making explicit what has long been implied: rejecting the premise that the Palestinians will ever have a state of their own. Over the past few years, analysts have been using the term “creeping annexation” to describe Israel’s land grabbing, segregationist policies in the West Bank. But over the past few days, the country’s leaders have been openly signaling that annexation need no longer creep. It is the new game in town. [tmwinpost] On Sunday night, Likud’s Central Committee, the body responsible for updating the party’s constitution, unanimously passed a resolution to extend Israeli sovereignty…

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