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natan zach

  • How freedom of speech was crushed during Protective Edge

    One of the side effects of Operation Protective Edge has been a dramatic narrowing of the political conversation in Israel. The author aggregates all the major incidents during the Gaza War in which freedom of speech in Israel was curtailed, often violently. By Orli Santo An entire spectrum of formerly acceptable left-leaning opinions and sentiments – from defending Palestinians’ human rights to merely empathizing with their suffering – has become taboo. In the past two months people who publicly expressed such opinions were beaten on the streets, derogated in the media, threatened, boycotted, and fired from their jobs. Lawmakers who…

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  • How else to sweeten days? A poem-post

    The Hebrew word "shir" means both poem and song, an indication that in ancient time, the two were one. Poetry was not written but recited, it was a musical art. We recite a lot these days, rhyming, chiming, putting words to a rhythm. We chant at protests and outside coutrooms. The result rarely sounds artistic (except in the case of "poetry demonstrations" organized by the "Culture Guerilla" organization) but it does something to ease our pain. We feel, perhaps naively, that we're making a difference by making some noise. All of this brought to my mind the following poem, composed…

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  • Between the Lines (6 Oct): Yesterday's news today & the real news

    Headlines: Yesterday’s new today > This is a news roundup, but do the newspapers necessarily publish news? This is yet another day when the Yom Kippur War protocols capture the headlines, without revealing anything significant about that war that we didn’t already know. Israel was caught by surprise despite sufficient intelligence? Jordan was a secret ally? Israeli leadership considered extreme measures? These are just about the best known facts about that war. > Is the city of Lod in the grip of a crime wave? There have been 8 murders this year in a city with a population of 74,000,…

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