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Palestinian Citizens of Israel

  • What's so scary about a state of all its citizens?

    What sounds like a basic democratic concept is not only at odds with Israel’s founding principles, it is viewed as a direct threat. By Asaf Calderon Benjamin Netanyahu made waves in and outside of Israel this week when, responding to a statement by actress Rotem Sela that Israel should belong to all of its citizens, Arabs and Jews alike, he wrote "Israel is not a state of all its citizens." While the shocked reactions should be welcomed, the indignation is also indicative of how little the world is paying attention to the mainstream discourse in Israel. [tmwinpost] In Israel today, the…

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  • What Israelis aren't, but should be talking about in these elections

    Could these elections bring about the end of Netanyahu's rule? Why isn't anyone talking about half a century of occupation? And do these elections even matter, anyway? +972 and Local Call writers open up on what's at stake this time around. Reading much of the Israeli and international press, one might get the impression that the upcoming Israeli elections are solely a referendum on the last 10 years of Netanyahu’s rule. That might be partially true, but there are no few number of issues that aren’t being talked about, and there are stakes — and stakeholders — not being accounted…

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  • 14 Israeli citizens killed by police in five years, not a single indictment

    Over the past five years, police have shot dead 14 Israeli citizens. The department tasked with investigating the killings has closed all but two of the cases. Almost all the suspects were people of color. The police killing of 24-year-old Ethiopian-Israeli Yehuda Biadga last month sparked outrage among the Ethiopian community in Israel. Many believe that were it not for the color of his skin, he would still be alive today. Biadga, who suffered from PTSD as a result of his army service, was shot while wandering around his neighborhood in the city of Bat Yam while holding a knife.…

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  • Ahmad Tibi has a plan to unseat Netanyahu, but it means leaving his Palestinian partners

    Ahmad Tibi's recent announcement that he would split from the Joint List has rattled Palestinian citizens. In an interview, he speaks about the successes and failures of the list, why his party would be better off alone, and why he may join forces with Israel's centrist leaders. By Meron Rapoport Four years after it was established, the Joint List, which succeeded in uniting Israel’s Palestinian parties, is on its way toward dissolution. Dr. Ahmad Tibi, who heads the Arab Movement for Renewal faction, also known as Ta’al, made a surprising announcement last week, declaring he would run independently in the upcoming elections, set for April 9. The reason stems from Tibi’s…

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  • Activists pulled off bus for protesting racial profiling at Israeli hospital

    Security guards remove the activists for protesting a new policy that singles out Palestinians on a public bus line in southern Israel. Security guards at an Israeli hospital detained 10 Arab and Jewish activists Sunday for an act of civil disobedience protesting a policy to single out, remove, and inspect Palestinians on a public bus line in southern Israel. [tmwinpost] The activists, from the grassroots protest movement Standing Together, were removed from the bus at the entrance to Barzilai Medical Center in Ashkelon, after refusing to show their identification cards and demanding to know why non-Arab passengers weren’t asked to…

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  • Israel's Nation-State Law also discriminates against Mizrahi Jews

    Mizrahi academics and activists demand Israel's High Court strike down the Jewish Nation-State Law, saying it erases their cultural legacy and perpetuates injustices against both them and Palestinian citizens of Israel. Over 50 prominent Israeli Jews of Mizrahi origin filed a petition to the High Court of Justice on Tuesday demanding it strike down the Jewish Nation-State Law, saying it discriminates against both Palestinian citizens and Jewish Mizrahi citizens of Israel. [tmwinpost] According to the petition, the law, which demotes Arabic from an official language to one with “special status,” is “anti-Jewish” for excluding the history and culture of Jews from Arab and…

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  • The most critical issues Israelis won't be voting on in the next election

    Israelis will head to the polls next April to elect a new government. But none of the major parties are offering any real change when it comes to the occupation or social justice issues. This is where the left has a role to play.  Amid a number of coalition crises and the possibility of an indictment against Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, leaders of the Israeli government announced Monday that they would be dissolving the Knesset and holding elections on April 9th. The elections will put an end to the most right-wing government in Israeli history, and if the last few years have taught us anything, election season…

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  • 'Israeli authorities treat gun violence in our community as an Arab problem'

    Israeli police estimate that there are hundreds of thousands of illegal guns among Palestinian citizens of Israel, a community suffering from under-policing and high levels of violence. Are the guns the problem? And what can be done about it? The Palestinian community in Israel has been experiencing an ongoing wave of violence for some years now. In the past week alone, seven people were killed in Kafr Qasim, Acre, Jaffa, and Lyd. The killings tend to rob Palestinians in Israel their sense of personal security, and guns have become so pervasive, that at times it feels like anyone could be…

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  • The many costs Palestinian women pay to fight oppression

    As if defying gender norms in their own communities isn't enough, Palestinian women are forced to fight prejudices and racism masking themselves as feminism in Israel and the West. By Anwar Mhajne Tens of thousands of women protested against gender violence in Israel earlier this month, demanding the allocation of more resources to combat it. The protests came a week after the murders of two girls, 16-year-old Yara Ayoub from the village of Jish, and 13-year-old Silvana Tsegai from Tel Aviv. This week, another woman, Eman Ahmad Awad, was found stabbed to death in her home in Acre. She was the 25th…

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  • This is how to fight Israel's Jewish Nation-State Law

    From Palestinian refugees to High Court justices, the Jewish Nation-State law will have a significant impact on several groups affected by the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. This is what we can do about it. By Said Zeedani The Jewish Nation-State Law, a new law with the force of a constitutional amendment, enshrined Israel as the exclusive nation-state of the Jewish people, demoted the official status of the Arabic language, and gave the right of self-determination in Israel to Jews alone. Palestinian political leaders, Israeli opposition politicians, and dovish Jewish-American groups all lambasted the passage of the law earlier this year, with some saying the law amounted…

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  • Arab women made history in Israel's local elections. Here's how they did it

    A record-breaking 26 Palestinian women were elected to office in Israel's local elections. Despite the unprecedented numbers, there is still a long way to go. Arab women made history in the last round of local elections in Israel held in late October. A total of 26 Arab women were elected across the country, including the first Druze and first Bedouin woman, respectively, as well as an unprecedented four female heads of political parties. In the past months, civil society and women’s associations banded together to encourage more Arab women to participate in local elections and exercise their right to vote. (Full disclosure: the organization I manage…

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  • Traveling the world as a Palestinian on an Israeli passport

    When I traveled to Morocco last year, I was escorted from the airport by security — for my protection, because of my Israeli passport — and greeted with 'Shabbat Shalom.' When I told the airport official 'thank you, but I am not Jewish,' he responded, 'it does not matter.' By Anwar Mhajne At home, we speak Arabic intermixed with Hebrew. We deal with Israeli law, Israeli institutions, and can participate in the Israeli political system. But we are always conscious of our Palestinian heritage. Everything becomes more difficult whenever I cross borders. The in-betweeness of my identity is lost. To…

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  • From Palestine to Ferguson: Reflections on shared grief and liberation

    Formerly incarcerated women of color perform the story of a Palestinian teen killed by Israeli police in October 2000. The act of Black-Palestine solidarity highlights shared trauma, but also concrete ways toward liberation. By Jen Marlowe and Je Naé Taylor On October 2, 2000, Aseel Asleh, a 17-year old Palestinian citizen of Israel, was shot and killed by Israeli police at a demonstration outside his village in northern Israel. On September 3, a staged reading of “There is a Field,” a documentary play of Aseel’s life and killing, was performed as part of the Kennedy Center’s Page to Stage Festival,…

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