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Jewish-Arab relations

  • Poll: Jews, Arabs much less divided than Israeli politics lets on

    A 'Local Call' poll shows a broad range of areas where Jews and Arabs see the benefits of cooperation. But that doesn't mean Jewish Israelis are ready to let Arabs hold positions of power, namely joining the government. The surprising bit: most Arabs would support their parties joining an Israeli government. Judging from the current Israeli election cycle and the various campaigns competing, it would be easy to conclude that Arab and Jewish citizens of Israel have completely failed to build a shared life together. The campaigns are filled with insulting and racist messaging that is being disseminated every which…

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  • The Jewish-Arab love story that threatened Israel's national identity

    'All the Rivers,' the latest book by Dorit Rabinyan, generated international headlines when it was banned from Israel's high school curriculum for depicting a Jewish-Arab romance. On the occasion of its publication in English, +972 Magazine speaks with the author about the ban and its fallout, and about traversing boundaries. In December 2015, Israel’s Education Ministry banned Dorit Rabinyan’s third novel, “All the Rivers,” from the high school literature curriculum on the grounds that it encouraged assimilation via the tale of a Jewish-Arab romance. If that was the reason, the ministry need not have bothered: The autobiographically-inspired relationship between a young…

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  • Why Morocco can be a model for Jewish-Arab partnership

    Throughout much of my life, I have been engaged in attempts to improve Jewish-Arab relations in Israel. But a recent trip to Morocco, where Jews and Muslims lived in harmony for centuries, filled me with hope for my country. Life after the conflict: Act One.  By Ron Gerlitz Yes we can. We can imagine good relations between Jews and Arabs here, in the State of Israel, and generally in the area between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea. This is the main insight with which I returned from a very meaningful trip together with members of the Shaharit "120"…

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  • The Israeli media's outsized influence on Jewish-Arab relations

    Though every fifth Israeli citizen is Arab, most Jewish Israelis only know of them and their political thoughts and identity through the Israeli media, and only two polar opposite stereotypes are portrayed in the Hebrew media: the apolitical ‘good Arab’ and the terrorism-supporting ‘bad Arab.’ By Edan Ring Despite the fact that every fifth Israeli citizen is an Arab, media coverage of the most significant minority in the State of Israel is for the most part sparse and one dimensional. Only a small percentage of the interviews and reports in the various media outlets deal with the Arab population, and even…

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  • WATCH: Following killings, will Bedouin boycott the elections?

    Following the recent killing of two Bedouin men in the southern city of Rahat at the hands of Israeli police — along with years of discrimination in nearly every realm, dispossession and home demolitions — the younger generation of Bedouin are more reluctant to vote in the upcoming elections. Jews and Bedouin met in the Negev town Lakiya to discuss the difficulties currently facing the Bedouin community, and whether or not boycotting the elections will really bring about any significant change.  Related: PHOTOS: Bedouin protest deadly police shootings in Israel Negev Bedouin are now demolishing their own homes out of despair

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  • Just another exclusionary democracy in the Mideast

    This state has never truly recognized the injustices it is responsible for: the Nakba, the occupation or the poor treatment of Mizrahim. And yet, we still have an obligation to try and make this a place worth living in.  Israeli society isn't ready for a political party with "too many women," said one female political analyst on Channel 2. The country isn't ready for too many Mizrahim in its elitist Jewish parties. The country isn't ripe for more blacks or Russians. And let's not even get started on Arabs, especially at a time when everyone is arguing over who is…

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  • To fight police violence, address their racism

    The killing of a young Bedouin man from Rahat and the death of another during the funeral have deepened the city's lack of faith in the authorities. Only anti-racism education for police and young people alike can stop the landslide. By Kher Albaz The Or Commission, which investigated the shooting deaths of 13 Arab demonstrators in October 2000, found serious flaws in the Israeli police's actions against Arab citizens. The atmosphere within the Israeli police, then and apparently now, can be summed up by one sentence from the committee’s recommendations: “The police must implemented an approach that views Israeli Arabs…

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  • Majority of Israeli Jews support bus segregation, survey finds

    Surveys by Israeli Democracy Index and Tel Aviv University find that most Israeli Jews prefer separate buses for Jews and Palestinians in the West Bank; one-quarter of Arab respondents support the torching of Jerusalem's only mixed Jewish-Arab school.  As Israel heads into election cycle, a shower of political punditry will yet again distract everyone from the issues that affect people’s lives. That is the main reason, in my opinion, why the prime minister wanted elections. He has exhausted all other means of doing nothing. Yet it’s worth remembering the issues. The following is a selection of public opinion data from…

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  • Returning to Gaza's devastation after summer peace camp

    During Operation Protective Edge, dozens of Israeli and Palestinian children spent their days at a summer peace camp in the U.S. When one of those children returned to Gaza and found his family homes destroyed, he wrote a letter to the new Israeli friend he’d made at camp. By Orly Noy Just days before the start of the latest Gaza war I had the opportunity to speak with Noa, my daughter’s good friend, who told me excitedly about her upcoming trip to a camp run by Seeds of Peace, an a-political organization that works to introduce youths from conflict zones…

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  • Why are Palestinian citizens expected to be loyal to Israel?

    Israelis on the Left and Right alike expect Palestinian citizens of Israel to display loyalty to the state, yet they never acknowledge Israeli crimes against Palestinians. It’s high time they took a long look in the mirror. “Is he also going to grow up to be an enemy of Israel like you?” A. asked as he played with Adi, my one-and-a-half-year-old nephew. “Maybe, if god and Gideon Levy will it, he and a lot more like him will grow up to be a fifth column,” I answered as I put another Winnie the Pooh plate into the shopping cart —…

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  • There's still room for optimism: A letter to Sayed Kashua

    ‘You were supposed to be optimistic, you were supposed to give us hope. Instead you are only proposing despair.’ A letter to Israel’s best known Hebrew-language Palestinian author, columnist and entertainer, who after the racism and violence of recent weeks wrote that he's lost hope in coexistence. By Maisalon Dallashi Dear Sayed, You broke my heart when you cried out in your weekly Haaretz column. You've made the tears trickle down of their own accord. You made me want to escape out of my body and run. This is not how I imagined our first meeting. In my mind I saw…

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  • Not just escalation: A frightening new era of Jewish-Arab relations in Israel

    Attacks by Jewish hooligans on Arabs, unprecedented incitement by right-wing politicians and clashes between Israeli Police and Arab youth. We've been here before, but never like this. By Ron Gerlitz This article is written at the height of an extensive, violent escalation in the Jewish-Arab conflict, both within Israel and between Israel and the Palestinians in the territories and the Gaza Strip. Regarding the events inside Israel, it is important to note the dramatic difference between the events of October 2000 and those of the past week. In October 2000, it was Arab citizens of Israel confronting the police. In…

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