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  • IDF intercepts Gaza boat trying to escape the blockade

    Carrying 17 people, including university students, cancer patients, and protesters wounded by Israeli forces during the Great Return March, the Gaza boat was headed towards Cyprus before IDF gunboats intercepted it. By Meron Rapoport, Mohammed Zaanoun, and +972 Magazine Staff Israeli gunships intercepted a Palestinian boat attempting to break Israel’s naval siege of the Gaza Strip Tuesday afternoon. The attempt to break the blockade comes two weeks after Israeli soldiers killed at least 60 Palestinian protesters and wounded thousands of others at the Gaza-Israel separation barrier on Gaza’s eastern boundary. [tmwinpost] The boat was headed to Limassol, Cyprus, and was…

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  • ‘We’re dying slowly in Gaza, it’s better to die along the fence trying to be free’

    In the days leading up to the culmination of the Great Return March, in which organizers expect masses to breach the Gaza border fence, we speak with three Gazans about what the protests have accomplished, what hope they carry, and where they have disappointed. By Meron Rapoport The organizers of the Great March of Return say they expect protesters will attempt to reach or breach the border fence with Israel during protests marking the moving of the U.S. Embassy and Nakba Day on Monday. Not everyone in Gaza supports the march, especially because it has yet win any tangible gains,…

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  • Love under siege in Gaza

    In honor of Valentine's Day, three tales from Gaza of the impossible conditions for families and couples created by Israel's closure of the Strip. By Tania Hary To receive a permit to travel to and from Gaza via Erez Crossing, Israel must determine that your reason for travel is humanitarian in nature or that you meet a list of exceptional circumstances (like playing for the national football team or being a trader). Traveling to visit your mother you haven’t seen in 10 years isn’t considered to be humanitarian in nature, unless, God forbid, she’s ill with a fatal condition. [tmwinpost] Traveling…

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  • A siege of inertia: Israel's non-policy on Gaza

    One government inherits the siege from another, the prime minister admits it’s more harmful than helpful, the cabinet never formulates or even discusses a policy, and one minister goes as far as admitting that the only driving force behind Israel’s Gaza policy is inertia. By Itamar Sha’altiel There is something tempting about trying to connect all the dots, which show that every decision made by successive Israeli governments have just been part of one giant, logical process. It doesn't matter whether the final outcome is cold and cruel — at least we can find solace knowing that all the pain and…

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  • Why Israel won’t sign any ceasefire that’s fair

    A fair ceasefire would bring major relief for Gaza, which would mean Hamas wins the war. The ceasefire that the world is now pushing for – one that, as UN chief Ban Ki-Moon put it, not only ends the fighting but also ends Israel’s “chokehold on Gaza” – is one that the Netanyahu government will not accept. It should accept it, because Gazans have the right to be free, but it won’t. Its rejection of John Kerry’s offer on Friday – which reportedly would have allowed the Israeli army to go on destroying Gazan tunnels even during a week-long ceasefire…

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  • Government releases 'Red Lines' document detailing Gaza food restrictions

    After a three and a half year legal battle, Israeli NGO Gisha has obtained the state's 'Red Lines' documents, which detail Israel's severe restrictions on the amount of food that could enter the Gaza Strip between 2007 and 2010, including calculations of Palestinians' caloric needs.  The "Red Lines" document was based on research compiled by the security establishment and the Israeli Ministry of Health, and aimed to "identify the point of intervention for prevention of malnutrition in the Gaza Strip." According to Gisha, the document "includes tables calculating the food consumption needs of people in Gaza according to age and…

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  • Flotilla report: So how did the activists die?

    Why does Israel still refuse to show us the full footage from the Mavi Marmara? Perhaps because it knows what we’ll see Last weekend saw the release of the Palmer Report (which can be read here – a PDF file) dealing the Flotilla incident and the assault on the Mavi Marmara last year. To make a simplistic summary, the report reaches two conclusions: That Israel’s naval blockade of the Gaza Strip is legal, which means is entitled (in fact, required) to enforce it; and that the assault on the Mavi Marmara was wild and lacked proportion. The Israeli government, naturally,…

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  • Rightist blog's discovery: Palestinians buy Israeli goods!

    US-based blog Elder of Ziyon has posted a somewhat Orwellian piece: The latest installment in the "there is no humanitarian crisis in Gaza" Hasbara-project actually celebrates the fact that a new Gaza supermarket sells Israeli goods. … if [passengers of the flotilla] do visit Metro [the new Gaza supermarket], they would be forced to protest the fact that it is not adhering to BDS because it sells so many Israeli products - and even features them prominently. [photos of Israeli products in the supermarket] It's a terrible world when Israel boycotters can't even convince stores in Gaza to stop selling Israeli goods.…

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  • Hundreds to challenge restrictions on traveling to Occupied Territories

    Israel is not yet done with the second flotilla, and a new effort to challenge its control over the travel to and from Palestinian Territories might take place this week - in no other place than the Tel Aviv International Airport This post was updated. A coalition of organizations has made public [French, PDF] its intention to have hundreds of international activists land at Ben-Gurion airport this Friday, July 8th, and openly declare their intention to visit the West Bank. Until now, visitors coming in solidarity with the Palestinians had to conceal their destination when questioned at the airport, or…

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  • Greece: Israeli assault on the Flotilla is well underway

    ATHENS: Israeli diplomatic and economic pressure is looming large over preparations of the second Gaza aid flotilla, set to sail from a number Greek ports at the end of the month. Israel has clearly stated that it will use every diplomatic and military avenue to maintain its naval blockade of the Gaza Strip. The events of the past few days in Athens confirm that Israel is making good on its claim. Learning from last year's botched military operation against the flotilla-- which left eight Turkish civilians and one Turkish-American civilian dead-- Israel is seemingly applying pressure directly on the Greek…

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  • 12-hour-long relay race in Yarmouk stadium, Gaza (by Jared Malsin)

    Gaza - I’ve been critical in the past of feature reporting on Palestine that takes the form of “Palestinians + X” where X is anything other than violence. You see feature stories in the Western press Palestinian soccer teams, Palestinian musicians, basketball players, as if it were somehow remarkable that Palestinians engage in the full spectrum of human pursuits that people all over the world do. Sometimes these stories are couched in terms of “how remarkable these Palestinians are able to do [X activity] in spite of the occupation.” But sometimes not. I tire of these features. I believe that…

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