The myth of the land of Mandate Palestine as an untapped oasis waiting for Jewish habitation is still thriving on both sides of the Green Line. Photographs are a key tool for perpetuating — and challenging — that myth. David Rubinger, Israel’s most famous photographer, died on 1 March at the age of 92. His photograph of three Israeli paratroopers gazing at the Western Wall, taken minutes after Israeli forces seized Jerusalem’s Old City during the 1967 Arab-Israeli war, was widely revered as a symbol of Zionism’s triumphant destiny. Rubinger, however, was not particularly fond of the picture: “Part of…Read More... | 1 Comment
After years of negotiations with reform and conservative movements of Judaism and ‘Women of the Wall,’ the Israeli government agreed to create an egalitarian prayer space at the Western Wall in Jerusalem, where men and women can pray in the same space. We went to the Western Wall to ask people how they feel about the decision, and whether they would use the mixed prayer plaza. Read more: Women of the Wall victory can teach us a few things 'Why I cannot stand with Women of the Wall'Read More...
They began with clashes around the Temple Mount/Haram al-Sharif, continued with mutual arson and stabbing attacks, and ended in a massacre. And even then we continued living together. By Hillel Cohen (translated from Hebrew by Sol Salbe) The recent events in Jerusalem are reminding some people of the summer of 1929. The parallels are uncanny: a struggle to extend praying rights for Jews at the Temple Mount; rising tensions; hateful language; a meager few voices trying to restore calm only to be denounced as traitors; blood in the streets. And more blood. And more. Among the killings there is a…Read More...
Nothing in Israel, or in the Middle East, is disconnected from anything else. Yet the issue of women’s religious access to the Kotel is treated, especially in North America, as if it exists in a vacuum. By Aryeh Cohen The story of Women of the Wall begins with the Wall. The story of the contemporary Wall begins with the Six-Day War in June of 1967. It begins not on June 7, when the Old City was captured and David Rubinger took his iconic photograph of three battle-weary Israeli soldiers standing in front of the Wall, nor even when the paratroopers’…Read More... | 9 Comments
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