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yossi gurvitz

  • When remembering the Sabbath day enables settler violence

    Settler violence on the Sabbath is not uncommon in the West Bank: Israeli civilians feel emboldened to attack Palestinians, knowing that law enforcement will refrain from taking serious action until the following week.  By Yossi Gurvitz, for Yesh Din They came riding on a horse, two Israeli civilians armed with firearms. One of them jumped off, drew a box cutter, and informed the Palestinian shepherd, B., that “this is our land.” As if to prove the point, he added that he would kill the sheep as well. The two Israelis began throwing stones at the animals, killing one of them…

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  • Pushing Palestinians off their land — by pumping sewage onto it

    Not content with ongoing demolitions in Umm al-Kheir and the destruction of its taboun, settlers in nearby Carmel have resorted to piping their waste onto the land belonging to the village. By Yossi Gurvitz, for Yesh Din The usual problem with reporting on what happens in the West Bank is lens width, an essential physical problem: you want to focus on the details, and hence need to narrow the lens. Yet the details themselves are part of a greater picture, demanding a wider lens. [tmwinpost] On the face of it, what happened in Umm al-Kheir in the south Hebron Hills in December…

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  • When a Palestinian girl is shot and killed 'by accident'

    Samah Abdullah, 18, was in a car with her family when she was shot in the head by Israeli soldiers, dying three weeks later. The army claims it was an accident. By Yossi Gurvitz / Yesh Din Samah Abd Al-Muman Ahmed Abdullah, from the West Bank village of Amoriya, woke up on Monday, November 23rd 2015, as she did on any day. She was an 18-year-old recent high school graduate who had just begun a cosmetics course in Nablus with her younger sister, H. Samah and H. took public transportation to the school. At about 11:00 a.m., Samah spoke with…

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  • Caught red-handed: Settlers steal Palestinians' donkey

    Much of the Israeli public believes Palestinians lie constantly. This time, Yossi Gurvitz witnesses and documents evidence in real time. By Yesh Din, written by Yossi Gurvitz One of the problems with reporting what happens in the West Bank to the Israeli public is that it has grown accustomed to thinking that Palestinians lie. All of them. All the time. Without taking a break. This isn’t the place to examine this social construct – one suspects it exists because it is so convenient. Because it makes it easy to ignore every complaint with a shrug – and certainly Palestinians have been…

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  • J14 and the rift between Israeli and international activists

    Former allies in fight against occupation are battling over the meaning of the tent protest. Can the relationship be rescued, and should it be? The tent protest, also known as J14, already had an effect on many groups in Israeli society, forcing them to re-examine their political positions and alliances. And while we have yet to see what comes out of this process, it is safe to say that in the last few weeks a new conversation has emerged. One of these developments, perhaps an unwelcome one, was a growing rift between Israeli left-wing activists and some progressive bloggers and…

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  • ICP never backed oppression: Response to Yossi Gurvitz

    This weekend, Yossi Gurvitz accused former MK Muhammad Naffa, secretary-general of the Communist Party of Israel of backing the suppression of the Syrian uprising. Uri Weltmann, a member of the Communist Party of Israel, denies these allegations and clarifies the party position below. Yossi Gurvitz replies to Uri Weltmann, here. By Uri Weltmann Reading Yossi Gurvitz's article, which aims to “expose” the position of the Communist Party of Israel (CPI) on the developments in Syria, one is attacked by an eerie feeling of déjà vu. Suddenly, we are thrown back to the old days of the Cold War era, where facts…

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  • Does Israel's cultural life offer hope for its democracy?

    Over at the Project Democracy blog, which I am writing for ACRI's democracy initiative, I responded to a post Mati Shemeolof wrote last week for +972 Magazine. Shemeolof describes his fellow bloggers' gloom regarding the future of Israel's democracy by putting forward the theory that the situation is not really all that bad. In his response to statements made by Yossi Gurvitz and Dimi Reider to a visiting delegation of Rabbis for Human Rights from North America, Shemeolof  points out that Israel's cultural life - particularly the leftist cultural life -  is flourishing. He offers examples such as ActiveStills, Guerilla…

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  • Culture flourishes in a declining democracy (Mati Shemoelof)

    Last week I was at a dinner with the North American management of Rabbis for Human Rights. They met with some of the +972 Magazine bloggers. The conversation was mainly about the decline of Israeli democracy.  Yossi Gurvitz, Dimi Reider and others were very pessimistic about the survival of the Israeli democracy. They gave reports about the most recent bill placed on the Knesset agenda by the radical right politicians. The North American crowd was very curious and knowledgeable about the issues, but after an hour or so they asked if all of the bloggers were pessimistic. The bloggers admitted…

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  • The brave soldier Gurvitz (by Yossi Gurvitz)

    Originally posted on Yossi Gurvitz's blog, Wish You Orwell: The Decline and Fall of the Israeli Democracy I wasn’t expecting much from the Israeli Defense Forces in August ’88, when I was drafted. To its credit, the IDF wasted no time in discouraging any expectations, of any kind. I was legally drafted to the IDF, a slave of the state for a three year period, and like all soldiers, my first stop was intake base, the “bakum”. First to meet me there was the Religion Officer, whose job was to hand-pick yeshiva graduates from among the teeming masses, the ones…

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