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West Bank settlements

  • The Israeli gov't is arguing that annexation is good for Palestinians

    In a High Court case over a law to legalize Israeli settlements built on stolen, privately owned Palestinian land, the attorney hired to represent the government (because the attorney general refused to do so) argues that Palestinians, and not just settlers, would actually benefit. Israel's High Court of Justice heard arguments on Sunday against the "Formalization Law," which would retroactively legalize settlements built illegally on private Palestinian land. Sunday’s hearing was remarkable, and not only because of the law’s potential consequences. After all, it’s not every day that attorneys Michael Sfard and Hassan Jabareen, two of the country’s most prominent…

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  • Attempts to 'bypass' Israel's High Court will create a 'tyranny of the majority'

    The government wants to strip the High Court of Justice of its ability to strike down unconstitutional laws, giving the government carte blanche to violate civil and human rights. The Israeli government has in recent days advanced legislation to limit or strip the country’s High Court of Justice of its ability to strike down laws it deems unconstitutional. Critics warn that would create dictatorial powers for the executive, put the rights of the country’s Arab population and other minority groups at risk, and set Israel up for a constitutional crisis. [tmwinpost] Israel does not have a formal constitution that codifies a…

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  • Netanyahu's downfall is nothing to celebrate

    Netanyahu needs to go, but progressives are mistaken if they think that the end of his rule will halt Israel's rightward march.  The myriad corruption scandals engulfing Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu have, on a near daily basis, been growing and spreading like cracks in a windshield. True or not, the question of if King Bibi’s reign is coming to an end feels like it has officially been supplanted by predictions about when the house of cards will come crashing down. [tmwinpost] Even more dizzying is how we are becoming privy to corruption, attempts to corrupt, and general malfeasance in nearly…

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  • Trump is just what Netanyahu needs to annex the West Bank

    His ideological proximity to the new U.S. president will allow Netanyahu to advance plans for the de facto annexation of the West Bank. Now all he needs is Trump's approval. By Menachem Klein A slip of the tongue from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu last month is worthy of attention. In an unprepared response to a Likud Knesset member, Netanyahu said: “What I’m willing to give to the Palestinians is not exactly a state with full authority, but rather a state-minus, which is why the Palestinians don’t agree [to it].” [tmwinpost] This almost never happens to Netanyahu. He is calculated, in contrast to…

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  • German bank fights BDS while financing dispossession

    Germany's Bank for Social Economy shut down an account belonging to a Jewish peace group, accusing it of anti-Semitism. Meanwhile, it continues to handle an account belonging to the Jewish National Fund — which actively supports dispossession of Bedouin. By John Brown* In the beginning of December, +972's Haggai Matar revealed that Germany's Bank für Sozialwirtschaft (Bank for Social Economy) had closed an account belonging to Jewish Voice for a Just Peace in the Middle East, a German-based peace group. According to the bank, the organization was part of a campaign that undermined Israel's existence. [tmwinpost] The bank's claims, however,…

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  • Using stolen water to irrigate stolen land

    Settlers are trying to spin water shortages as a problem that affects both Palestinians and Jews in the same manner. That couldn't be further from the truth. By Dror Etkes The recent reports on water crisis in Palestinian areas of the West Bank were accompanied by a story of another water shortage: this time in Israeli settlements. Let's get one thing straight — there has never been a "water shortage" in the settlements. When settlers open up the tap at home or in their garden, the amount and quality of the water is identical to that which comes out in…

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  • An Israeli-Palestinian confederation? Not so fast

    A new initiative seeks to find a new, creative way to solve the conflict. The only problem? It forgets about equality. By Yuval Eylon The latest hit in the peace plan business comes from "Two States One Homeland," an initiative that eschews both the two-state solution and the one-state solution, instead envisioning a confederation between Israel and a future Palestinian state. Founder Meron Rapoport fleshed out the movement's core principles at the movement's conference a few weeks ago: "We believe that the central aspect that was missed here over the past 22 years is the fact that the land between…

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  • Nearly 1,000 Bedouin structures demolished in past year

    Over 1,700 structures were self-demolished by their owners over the past three years following pressure by police and state inspectors. Around half the demolitions were carried out in recognized Bedouin villages. Israel demolished 1,041 Bedouin structures in the Negev between 2013 and 2015, with a further 1,711 structures being destroyed by their owners after receiving demolition orders, according to a new report by the Negev Coexistence Forum for Civil Equality (NCF). In 2015 alone, nearly 1,000 structures were demolished in the Negev — 365 by the Israeli authorities, and 617 by the homeowners themselves. [tmwinpost] The waves of demolitions have displaced thousands of…

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  • This is how settlers take over Palestinian land

    From audacious fraud and forgery to military seizures for ‘security needs’ and the ‘public good’ to dusting off antiquated Ottoman laws, the Israeli settlement enterprise has no shortage of tools for taking over Palestinian land in the West Bank. By Dror Etkes On February 9, 2004, Abdelatif Hassan Samarin, a resident of the West Bank village of Burqa, just a few miles east of Ramallah, woke up before dawn. After his morning prayers, Samarin drank two cups of sweet tea with mint, meant to combat the morning chill of winter, packed some clothing into a suitcase that his son —…

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  • Airbnb lets you vacation in illegal West Bank settlements

    Fancy a vacation with breathtaking views of the Holy Land? Airbnb will let you rent out luxurious cottages atop barren hilltops, making no mention of the fact that they are in settlements on occupied land. By John Brown* Airbnb, it has come to our attention, enables anyone to rent rooms and vacation homes in Israeli settlements in the West Bank. Anyone who is not of Palestinian descent, of course. Without exception, the listings, some which appear to be luxurious cottages and others that are caravans sitting on barren hilltops, make no mention of the fact that they are in settlements on…

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  • The devastating effects of night raids on Palestinian families

    IDF night raids, an everyday occurrence in the occupied territories, ensure that Palestinians cannot feels safe in the one place where safety should be assured. By Salwa Duaibis Over the years, the Women’s Centre for Legal Aid and Counselling (WCLAC) has collected testimonies from Palestinian women in the West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza on a whole range of issues. However there is one issue, above all others, that stands out due to the frequency with which it occurs and the devastating impact it has on women, their children and entire communities: night raids conducted by the Israeli military into…

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  • Court denies equal rights to Palestinian workers in Israeli industrial zone

    National Labor Court rules that unlike their fellow Israeli workers, Palestinians in a no-man's land industrial zone will remain subject to the Jordanian labor laws of 1967. Israel's National Labor Court rejected an appeal by Palestinian workers from the Nitzanei Shalom Industrial Zone this past Sunday, ruling that they will continue to be subject to the Jordanian labor laws of 1967, rather than Israeli laws. The three appellants — Abdel Hamid Yahiye, Ahmed Shayib and Mujhad Harsha — sued their former employers in Tel Aviv's Regional Labor Court in 2010 after they were fired for demanding retroactive payment from their employer.…

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  • The day they strip me of my citizenship

    When the deputy interior minister demands Palestinian citizens renounce our citizenship, he only exposes the true nature of the Israeli state. After all, without us there is no 'only democracy in the Middle East.' We, the rowdy Arabs who live in the democratic state of the Jewish people, formally apologize for disrupting a Knesset plenum on the Citizenship Law, which denies status in Israel to Palestinian spouses of Israeli citizens. So what if the discussion was about our future, our place in society, our fate—we have no right to state our opinions. Since you were already there, dear coalition members, and…

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