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Purim

  • Watch: Israeli settlers harass Palestinian man in Hebron as troops look on

    The B’Tselem video shows a group of Israeli settlers and their dog, who decide to celebrate a festive Jewish holiday by intimidating and abusing a Palestinian man at a checkpoint. Instead of intervening, the Israeli troops on scene made the victim leave, telling him it is a place for Jews only. By Yael Marom There is no blood in this video, published here in English for the first time. There is no extraordinary physical violence. For a checkpoint in the occupied city of Hebron, it’s fairly routine — a few Israeli Border Police officers and a handful of settlers having a…

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  • Orthodox Jewish, British, Pro-Israel, Pro-peace

    Last week I met and spoke to a small group of Orthodox Jews in London, about Israeli political and social developments. I expected a challenging crowd, although the meeting’s organizer Hannah Weisfeld – who is working tirelessly to start an organization inspired by J Street in the UK – assured me that the audience was broadly pro-peace and progressive. But the reality was much more serious. These committed, active, synagogue-attending Orthodox folks, representing a range of ages and professions, were positively impassioned with the need to support Israel by supporting peace and democracy. They hung onto my talk but jumped in…

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  • Purim shopping in Tel-Aviv: Oscar's easy, Alice isn't

    We have three days left before the busiest partying weekend of the entire year. The Talmud itself urges us to drink so much during the holiday of Purim that we won't quite remember the point of Purim itself. Since the biblical story of Queen Esther ends with the gruesome massacre of 50,000 innocent Persians, I'm certainly looking forward to that stage of the night. I'd much rather think of Purim as a jovial spring festivity that had the Esther story pinned to it. Most secular Israelis take it to be that and use the occasion to break the day to…

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