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  • Shared and shattered: Gentrification and Judaization in Jaffa

    Over the past 70 years, the city of Jaffa has gone from being the 'Bride of Palestine' to the 'Arab backyard' of Tel Aviv. Today, as it undergoes rapid gentrification, Jaffa has become a central hub for both Palestinian and Jewish resistance. Israeli anthropologist Daniel Monterescu speaks to Fathom editor Alan Johnson about his new new book, which unpacks the history of a city that continues to be made and remade.   By Daniel Monterescu and Alan Johnson / Fathom Part 1: Personal and intellectual influences Alan Johnson: Can you say something about your family background and the major influences on your intellectual development,…

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  • Anniversary of Dolphinarium bombing and the lost decade

    I went for a walk along the shore yesterday evening, just shy of a stunning sunset. Late-Friday afternoons are essential to understanding Israel, and Tel Aviv in particular; there is a shared serenity that lulls the residents. Everyone can share in the calm and natural beauty of the sea: it's free. ******* As I walked south towards Jaffa, a girl was handing out flyers. Something about her seemed a little apologetic, or perhaps almost hopeful. On impulse, I took the flyer and walked on, preparing to stuff it into my pocket after I had passed her. In those paces, I…

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  • All signs point to Israel's weak democracy

    The assassination of Zuhair al-Qaissi, which sparked the escalation in the south, points to Israel's weak Supreme Court, a lack of transparency and accountability, and the state's flip attitude towards its judicial branch--as do some street signs in Tel Aviv The recent escalation between Israel and Gaza began after Israeli forces assassinated Zuhair al-Qaissi, a leader of the Popular Resistance Committees (PRC), a militant group composed of members of various Palestinian parties. Haaretz noted that the PRC was "the organisation that captured Gilad Shalit", the Israeli soldier who was freed in October 2011. The army says that al-Qaissi was behind the August 2011…

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