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Palestine Now Documentary 2017

World  (tags: middle-east, palestine, israel, occupation, oppression, Breaking the Silence, Disproportionality, civilian victims )

- 522 days ago -
Includes interviews with rabbis, former IDF, Palestinian villagers -


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Tania N (883)
Thursday November 16, 2017, 2:12 am
Thank you for sharing

Evelyn B (63)
Thursday November 16, 2017, 2:13 am
When one knows, deep down, that one is in the wrong - one bans criticism!
Israel Denies Entry to 20 European Officials Over ‘Support for Israel Boycott’

Evelyn B (63)
Thursday November 16, 2017, 2:14 am
The video is rather long, but worth watching.

Evelyn B (63)
Thursday November 16, 2017, 2:29 am
Thanks, Jess, for the heads-up on this!

Animae C (508)
Thursday November 16, 2017, 3:58 am
i'll make time to watch it.

TY Evelyn

Jonathan Harper (0)
Thursday November 16, 2017, 4:34 am

Peggy B (43)
Thursday November 16, 2017, 5:12 am

Freya H (345)
Thursday November 16, 2017, 5:32 am
You said it, Evelyn! Meanwhile, a horrid bill in US Congress would not only outlaw boycotting Israel, but impose severe penalties on those who do so. Here are two petitions against this bill:

Against the House version

Against the Senate version

What a sad irony that Israel is inflicting on the Palestinians the same kind of violent persecution that was infected on Jews for millennia.

Evelyn B (63)
Thursday November 16, 2017, 8:05 am
Freya - ******************************************
You are so right !
I think that this irony is what I find the most difficult to ignore. All my early upbringing emphasised the wrongs done to the Jews ...

But - the gap between religious community and political movement is often huge. That was the lesson I had to learn once the Palestinian situation entered the picture. How much harder it must be for sincere Jews (religious or not) who allow themselves to reflect on the contradiction between their cultural faith-based ethics and what political Zionism has been allowed to do with "Judaism".
Of course, that is why the right-wingers need hasbara, and why they need to mobilise their supporters round the world to try to illegalise BDS support. They can use violent resistance against the Palestinians, but non-violent resistance is far more powerful. So is telling the truth about what young IDF soldiers are encouraged to do, & what extremist settlers are allowed to do in almost total impunity.

Darren Woolsey (218)
Thursday November 16, 2017, 10:33 am
Shared everywhere

Colleen L (3)
Thursday November 16, 2017, 12:29 pm
bookmarked. Will watch it later on today. Thanks Evelyn

Trish K (29)
Thursday November 16, 2017, 1:37 pm
I think today I will boycott , hmmm, England - so stuffy you know

Evelyn B (63)
Saturday November 18, 2017, 1:25 am
I'd not seen this 2011 Peled interview, although I've seen many - thanks Jess!

Roberto MARINI (88)
Saturday November 18, 2017, 8:57 am
thanks for this video

Marija M (25)
Saturday November 18, 2017, 9:55 am
thank you very much for the video.

Margie FOURIE (148)
Sunday November 19, 2017, 12:18 am
Thank you

Sylvie A (190)
Monday November 20, 2017, 3:28 am
Thank you for sharing.

Roberto MARINI (88)
Monday November 20, 2017, 9:34 am
thank you for sharing

fly bird (26)
Monday November 20, 2017, 4:51 pm
Thank you for the petitions, Freya.

both signed, and Evelyn, for the video. *******

Janet B (0)
Monday November 20, 2017, 8:02 pm

fly bird (26)
Tuesday November 21, 2017, 5:03 am
U.S. Campaign to End the Israeli occupation.

fly bird (26)
Tuesday November 21, 2017, 5:04 am
Signatures needed. Please sign.

U.S. Campaign to End the Israeli occupation.

fly bird (26)
Tuesday November 21, 2017, 5:25 am
The Jews in pre-state Israel who called for a binational state - Israel News.

fly bird (26)
Tuesday November 21, 2017, 12:52 pm
Adalah: Discriminatory-laws database.

On the occasion of the swearing in of the new Israeli government and the 19th Knesset (18 March 2013) and the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (22 March 2013), Adalah is pleased to launch the Discriminatory Laws Database.

The Discriminatory Laws Database, the first of its kind, is an online resource that collects more than 60 Israeli laws enacted since 1948 that discriminate against Palestinian citizens of Israel in all areas of life, including land and planning; education; budgets and access to state resources; prisoners and detainees; civil and political rights. Some of the laws also violate the rights of Palestinians living in the 1967 OPT and Palestinian refugees.

The Discriminatory Laws Database is a comprehensive resource for researchers, journalists, lawyers, and citizens directly affected by these laws.

Laws that discriminate against Palestinians include:
◾Citizenship and Entry into Israel Law (Temporary Order – 2003)
◾“Nakba Law” – Amendment No. 40 to the Budgets Foundations Law
◾Absentee Property Law – 1950

Adalah’s General Director discusses discriminatory legislation
Watch a video of Adalah’s General Director Attorney Hassan Jabareen discussing the wave of discriminatory legislation passed during the Netanyahu-Lieberman government from 2009-2012.

Incendiary bills from the 18th Knesset
The database also includes several controversial discriminatory bills proposed in the 18th Knesset (2009-2012). This legislation may be introduced again before the new Knesset. Adalah hopes that the new government and Knesset will seek to pass democratic legislation protecting the rights of all citizens, rather than racist, discriminatory bills targeting Arab citizens’ rights.

Full texts and additional resources available in Hebrew, Arabic, and English
The database includes summary texts of each law and the full texts in Hebrew. Where available, Adalah has also provided translations of the laws, additional analyses, and petitions to the Supreme Court against the most egregious laws. Adalah also publishes a Brief on New Discriminatory Laws and Bills since 2009.

How Israel robs Palestinians of citizenship.

fly bird (26)
Tuesday November 21, 2017, 12:57 pm
How Israel robs Palestinians of citizenship. 19 September 2017

Israel has quietly revoked the citizenship of thousands of members of its large Palestinian minority in recent years, highlighting that decades of demographic war against Palestinians are far from over.

The policy, which only recently came to light, is being implemented by Israel’s population registry, a department of the interior ministry. The registry has been regularly criticized for secrecy about its rules for determining residency and citizenship.

According to government data, some 2,600 Palestinian Bedouins are likely to have had their Israeli citizenship voided. Officials, however, have conceded that the figure may be much higher.

The future offspring of those stripped of citizenship are likely to suffer problems gaining citizenship too.

Human rights groups have severely criticized Israel for violating its own laws, as well as international conventions to which it is a party, in carrying out such revocations.

Sawsan Zaher, a lawyer with Adalah, a legal center for Israel’s Palestinian minority, told The Jerusalem Post newspaper: “This policy is illegal and in contravention to international law because you cannot leave someone stateless.”

Harsh treatment

Palestinian citizens, one in five of Israel’s population, are descended from Palestinians who survived a mass ethnic cleansing campaign waged during Israel’s creation in 1948.

Today, some 200,000 Bedouins live in Israel, most of them in a semi-desert area known as the Naqab (Negev).

One of the two fastest-growing groups in Israel’s population, the Bedouins have faced especially harsh treatment. Israel continued expelling them to Jordan, Egypt and Gaza through the 1950s and to this day tightly limits the areas in the Naqab where the Bedouins can live.

Revelations of the revocations emerged as Ayelet Shaked, the far-right justice minister, warned Israel’s judges to prioritize demographic concerns and maintenance of the state’s Jewishness over human rights. She called growing numbers of non-Jews in the state “national challenges” that risked turning a Jewish state into “an empty symbol.”

According to Adalah, Bedouins typically learn that they have been stripped of citizenship when they approach the interior ministry for routine services such as renewing an identity card or passport, obtaining a birth certificate, or declaring a change of address.

Some have discovered their loss of status when seeking a passport to go on pilgrimage to Mecca, one of the obligations for Muslims.

Tip of the iceberg?

Aida Touma-Sliman, a Palestinian member of the Israeli parliament, said the policy of revocations had intensified over the past 18 months.

“I’m afraid that what has been exposed is only the tip of the iceberg and what hasn’t been revealed yet is even more serious,” she told the Haaretz newspaper.

The legislator fears that many other Bedouins have been stripped of citizenship, but have yet to learn of the fact.

She said she believed that the government was in part targeting Bedouins with revocation of citizenship to weaken long-standing land claims against the state.

Tens of thousands of Bedouins have been mired in legal action for decades trying to claim back the title deeds to ancestral lands seized from them by military officials in the first years after Israel’s creation.

Israel has declared the surviving communities as “unrecognized,” effectively criminalizing their inhabitants and denying them basic services such as water and electricity. Officials have also been trying to revive the Prawer Plan, which seeks to evict some 40,000 Bedouins – Adalah puts the figure at 80,000-90,000 – and force them into poor “townships”. The original plan was ostensibly frozen in late 2013 after mass protests across the Naqab.

Touma-Sliman said that without citizenship, Bedouins would be largely defenseless against steps to evict them.

Endless foot-dragging

Mahmoud al-Gharibi, an unemployed carpenter from the al-Azazme tribe, was one of several Bedouins who spoke to Haaretz in August during a protest rally in the Naqab village of Bir Hadaj.

He was told his citizenship had been revoked when he applied for a new identity card in 2000. “Since then I’ve applied 10 times [for renewed citizenship], getting 10 rejections, each time on a different pretext,” he said. “I have two children who are over 18 and they too have no citizenship.”

Another Bedouin who spoke anonymously to Haaretz said: “No one explains anything and all of a sudden your status changes. You go in as a citizen and come out deprived of citizenship, and then an endless process of foot-dragging begins.”

Zaher pointed out that many of those recently stripped of citizenship had been voting in parliamentary elections for years, even though it is a right available solely to citizens.

Adalah has warned that revoking citizenship is not only illegal according to Israel’s own laws, but violates the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Convention Relating to the Status of Stateless Persons, and the Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness, which Israel signed in 1961.

The group has appealed to Israel’s interior ministry and attorney general, demanding that they cancel the policy. Israeli officials have justified the revocations on the grounds that bureaucratic errors made in the state’s early years meant that the affected Bedouin’s parents or grandparents were not properly registered.

Israel did not pass its Citizenship Law – governing citizenship for non-Jews – until 1952. The legislation’s primary purpose was to strip some 750,000 Palestinians who had been made refugees by the 1948 war, and their millions of descendants, of a right to live in Israel.

A separate law, the 1950 Law of Return, entitles all Jews around the world to instant Israeli citizenship.

Martial law

The failure to register many Bedouins in Israel is related to a draconian period of martial law imposed on the Palestinian minority during Israel’s first 18 years.

Bedouins, like other Palestinian citizens, were not allowed to leave their communities without a special permit. But the remoteness of their communities and Israel’s continuing efforts to expel them through the 1950s mean that officials may have preferred to avoid registration in many cases.

According to reports by the United Nations and others, thousands of Bedouins were secretly expelled into neighboring Egypt and Jordan during the early years of the military government.

Even those who were not expelled outside Israel were often evicted from their ancestral lands and forced into overcrowded “townships.”

This intentionally murky period in Israel’s history has made it hard for the Bedouins to prove many decades later what happened to their parents or grandparents.

Adalah’s Zaher told The Jerusalem Post: “Basically, we’re talking about the grandparents of the people who are now affected and don’t know what happened under military rule. And then suddenly in 2010 they were told that because their grandparents were granted citizenship by mistake, now they will be stripped of their citizenship.”

The interior ministry has downgraded those Bedouins stripped of citizenship to “permanent residents” – the same status accorded to Palestinians in occupied East Jerusalem.

However, in practice, Israel does not treat “permanent residency” as permanent. Figures show that Israel has voided the residency status of nearly 15,000 Palestinians in East Jerusalem since the city’s occupation began in 1967.

Treated as foreigners

Bedouins have been told they are eligible to apply for citizenship again through a naturalization process, treating them effectively as foreigners.

However, according to Adalah, many have found that when they apply they continue to be denied citizenship, often on grounds that documents cannot be located or they lack sufficient proficiency in Hebrew.

There is no Hebrew language test for foreigners seeking citizenship, either Jews immigrating under the Law of Return, or non-Jewish spouses of Israeli citizens naturalizing under the Citizenship Law.

According to Haaretz, other Bedouins have found the interior ministry so unresponsive they have given up in despair.

The only provision allowing citizenship to be canceled is for recent arrivals who provided false information in their applications. Even then, the interior ministry is required to act within three years – otherwise it has to make an application for revocation through the courts.

Adalah has complained that those affected were not given a hearing before their citizenship was rescinded or the chance to appeal. Zaher said the policy was also blatantly discriminatory as no Jews had been denied citizenship because of errors in their parents’ or grandparents’ registration under the Law of Return.

Equal rights for equal burden?

The treatment of Bedouins gives the lie to one of Israel’s most familiar claims: that Palestinian citizens will receive the same rights as Jewish citizens if they share an equal burden. Avigdor Lieberman, the defense minister, has repeatedly campaigned on a platform of “no loyalty, no citizenship.” He argues that Palestinian citizens who do not serve in the Israeli army or perform an equivalent form of national service should lose their citizenship.

However, a proportion of those stripped of citizenship are from Bedouin families that have served in the Israeli army as desert trackers.

Several unrecognized villages, home to some 100,000 Bedouins, have a tradition of military service, but have still been denied services. Their homes are all under threat of demolition.

Some of the residents of Umm al-Hiran, which is currently being demolished to make way for the exclusively new Jewish community of Hiran, served as trackers for the Israeli army.

Atalla Saghaira, a resident of the unrecognized village of Rahma, told Haaretz he had been stripped of his citizenship in 2002 when he applied for a passport, even though his father was a tracker for the Israeli army. After 13 years of struggle, he eventually managed to regain citizenship, but three of his brothers were still stateless.

‘No harm intended’

The Israeli parliament’s interior committee held a meeting last year at which officials for the first time gave details of the revocation policy.

The head of the interior ministry’s citizenship department, Ronen Yerushalmi, submitted a report stating that as many as 2,600 Bedouins were affected. He admitted, however, that the data was not precise and the figure could be even higher.

At another meeting, the committee’s legal adviser, Gilad Keren, warned that the ministry was most likely breaking Israeli law. He said he could not “understand how, when a person has been a citizen for 20 years and the state makes a mistake, that person’s status is changed.”

In a statement to The Jerusalem Post, the interior ministry denied the evidence heard by the committee, claiming that only about 150 people had been affected. “No one means to harm them,” a spokesperson said. “Now the ministry is asking them to legally re-register so they will remain citizens.”

Revelations of the mass revocations came as an Israeli court last month approved for the first time stripping of citizenship a Palestinian convicted of carrying out an attack.

The interior ministry gave Alaa Zayoud, from the town of Umm al-Fahm in present-day northern Israel, the status of temporary resident after he was sentenced to 25 years for carrying out a car-ramming attack last October on Israeli soldiers. Four people were injured in that incident.

The revocation was made on the basis of a 2008 amendment to the Citizenship Law that allows citizenship to be rescinded for “breach of loyalty” to the state.

Double standard

Adalah, which opposed the government’s decision, pointed out a double standard in not applying the amendment to Israeli Jews. It cited recent cases such as that of a Jewish man and two Jewish juveniles who burned alive a 16-year-old Palestinian, Muhammad Abu Khudair, in Jerusalem in 2014, and that of Jewish settlers behind an arson attack a year later that killed three members of the Dawabsha family in the occupied West Bank village of Duma. None had citizenship revoked.

In 1996, Israel’s high court also refused a request to rescind the citizenship of an Israeli Jew, Yigal Amir, who a year earlier had assassinated Yitzhak Rabin, then prime minister. The judges ruled that such offenses should be dealt with in the criminal courts, not by revoking citizenship.

Previous revocations, though rare, have solely targeted Palestinian citizens. In 2002, Eli Yishai, then interior minister, stripped Nahad Abu Kishaq and Kais Obeid of citizenship.

Zayoud’s case was different because the interior ministry needed to seek court approval, therefore setting what Adalah and the Association for Civil Rights in Israel have called a “dangerous precedent.”

The fear is that Israel will use the case to justify many more such revocations or condition citizenship for the Palestinian minority on loyalty.

Ethnic cleansing

The question of whether Palestinians should have been awarded citizenship in the state’s early years is one that has exercised the Israeli leadership for decades. Many have feared that a growing Palestinian population in Israel poses a “demographic threat” to the state’s Jewishness.

Writing in 2002, Israeli historian Benny Morris suggested that Israel’s founding father, David Ben Gurion, should have “gone the whole hog” in 1948 – ethnically cleansing all Palestinians from the newly founded state of Israel.

Research has shown that Ben Gurion gave citizenship only reluctantly to the 150,000 Palestinians who survived the mass expulsions. They were initially assigned residency, chiefly as a way to aid in identifying and expelling Palestinian refugees trying to cross back into the new state of Israel to reach their villages.

Only in 1952, under international pressure, did Israel award the Palestinian minority citizenship through the Citizenship Law, legislation separate from that for Jews.

However, scholars have noted that for more than a decade Israeli leaders repeatedly attempted to find ways to expel Palestinian citizens or establish incentive schemes to encourage them to leave.

Israeli scholar Uri Davis has noted that 30,000 Palestinians living in Israel remained stateless until 1980, when Israel passed an amendment to the Citizenship Law belatedly awarding them citizenship.

Ben Gurion himself hoped to fix the percentage of Palestinians in Israel at no higher than 15 percent of the population. But with the proportion of Palestinian citizens now at one in five, Israeli politicians have been seeking ever more desperate ways to rid Israel of sections of the minority.

In July, the office of Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel’s prime minister, was reported to have urged the Trump administration in the US to agree to a land swap that would move an area home to some 250,000 Palestinian citizens of Israel to Palestinian control.

The proposal echoed Avigdor Lieberman’s long-standing plan to redraw Israel’s internationally recognized borders as a way to deny hundreds of thousands of Palestinians their citizenship.

In early 2014, the Maariv newspaper reported that Netanyahu had first posited a land and population exchange as a quick fix to reduce Palestinian citizens to no more than 12 percent of the population.

Janet B (0)
Wednesday November 22, 2017, 2:46 pm

fahad Al fahad (140)
Sunday November 26, 2017, 1:52 pm
A beautiful film about Palestine shows how the owners of refugee colonies from outside Palestine are the inhabitants of Palestine

fly bird (26)
Friday December 1, 2017, 8:23 pm
Richard Gere visits an Apartheid State

fly bird (26)
Monday December 4, 2017, 12:20 am
The Unknown History of the UN Plan to Partition Palestine

Twenty years after the Palestinian leadership declared partition ‘entirely illegal,’ they reversed course and recognized that accepting the division of the homeland could lay the groundwork for an independent state.

A few days ago, Israel and its supporters worldwide marked the 70th Anniversary of the 1947 Partition Resolution, which was passed by the UN and called for the division of Palestine into two states, one Arab and one Jewish.

Why did the Palestinians say “no” to partition? The answer is simple. They believed that it was unjust, that all of the land was rightfully theirs, and, more to the point, they believed they did not have to accept it. Everyone knew that war was imminent, and the Palestinians could not imagine that 600,000 Jews could withstand the overwhelming power of the Arab armies.

But in their celebrations, the commemorators missed a different anniversary. It occurred, largely unnoticed, two weeks earlier: the 29th anniversary of the Palestinian Declaration of Independence, proclaimed by the PLO on November 15, 1988.

Without familiarity with the Palestinian Declaration, however, the fuller story of the partition resolution cannot be understood. In their declaration, the Palestinians reversed their historic position on the partition resolution, as stated in the Palestinian National Covenant adopted in 1964:

The partition of Palestine in 1947 and the establishment of the state of Israel are entirely illegal, regardless of the passage of time, because they were contrary to the will of the Palestinian people and to their natural right in their homeland, and inconsistent with the principles embodied in the Charter of the United Nations; particularly the right to self-determination.

Interestingly, the covenant took a position on international law, claiming that partition was “illegal, regardless of the passage of time.” Then, almost to the day, some 41 years after partition was adopted in Flushing Meadows, the Palestinian Declaration of Independence made a quite different assertion. Still believing in the injustice of partition, a re-unified PLO that even included hardliners such as George Habash, reversed its stance on international law; rather than saying that partition was illegal, they acknowledged the legitimacy of the resolution. Noting that it provided for a Jewish state, they went on to invoke it as the basis in international law for a Palestinian state, writing:

Despite the historical injustice inflicted on the Palestinian Arab people following upon . . . U.N. General Assembly Resolution 181 (1947), which partitioned Palestine into two states, one Arab, one Jewish, yet it is this Resolution that still provides those conditions of international legitimacy that ensure the right of the Palestinian Arab people to sovereignty.

In those days, no one was demanding that the PLO revoke its position on the resolution. Indeed, Arafat’s legal advisors had provided him with a quite different draft of a Declaration of Independence — one that did not base the Palestinian state on the partition resolution at all, but solely on the Palestinian right to self-determination. This alternative did not tie the legitimacy of the Palestinian state- to-be to that of Israel. Arafat rejected this earlier draft, and turned to Palestinian national poet, Mahmoud Darwish, to pen the actual declaration.

Much of this is not well known, even to those who follow the conflict very closely. Some I learned only through research for my new book on the Palestinian declaration. It is, however, of great significance, as it makes clear that the Palestinians, at least in November of 1988, were not merely making a unilateral declaration — they were undertaking “unilateral peace-making,” balancing unilateral assertion with unilateral concession on the core issues of the conflict.

Last December, in Secretary of State John Kerry’s final speech on the conflict, the United States recognized the significance of the 1988 Declaration of Independence for the first time. Kerry proposed a new way to deal with Israel’s demand that the Palestinians recognize Israel as a Jewish state, stating that the parties commit themselves to negotiations which would “fulfill the vision of UN General Assembly Resolution 181 of two states for two peoples, one Jewish and one Arab,” adding that “both Israel and the PLO referenced Resolution 181 in their respective declarations of independence.”

Belated as it was, this appreciation of the Palestinian Declaration is of great importance, pointing the way toward a resolution of the Jewish state issue, and perhaps the conflict as a whole. The Palestinians are expected to soon renew their quest for membership in the United Nations, and when they do, they should make clear that the state seeking admission is the one proclaimed in their 1988 declaration, that is, a state based on the acknowledgement of the international legitimacy of a document that called for both an Arab state and a Jewish state. If they take this step, tying their legitimacy to that of Israel’s legitimacy as a Jewish state, then both Israel and the United States should support the admission of this Palestine to the United Nations.

The original source of this article is +972 Magazine

fly bird (26)
Friday December 8, 2017, 6:06 pm
Seeing Palestine .

Palestinian writer Mousa Tawfiq left Gaza via Israeli-controlled Erez checkpoint in September 2017, It was his first time seeing Palestine beyond the occupied Gaza Strip.

fly bird (26)
Sunday December 10, 2017, 5:39 am
VIDEO - ANALYSIS: 'Huge implications' for moving US embassy to Jerusalem

fly bird (26)
Monday December 11, 2017, 3:46 pm
4,290 supporters. let's get to 5,000.

Save Our Village from Israeli Bulldozers

As I write this letter, our village, Susiya, located in the South Hebron Hills of the occupied West Bank of Palestine, is under immediate threat of demolition. The only way to stop the demolition is through international pressure.


On 22 November 2017 the Israeli State Attorney’s Office announced that within 15 days they plan to demolish 20 buildings, which represent one-fifth of our village. This will violate the fundamental human rights of around 100 villagers, half of them children. The 20 buildings are our homes and also provide shelter for our animals. The timing of the demolition - in the middle of winter - could not be more devastating. It will leave us vulnerable and exposed to freezing rain and harsh winds. Our health clinic which provides health services for around 500 people from our own and surrounding communities, is among the buildings they plan to demolish. The Israeli authorities also want to demolish our village council which provides services for 350 local residents.

UPDATE: On 5 December 2017 the Israeli State Attorney’s office announced that the state plans to demolish approximately 40% of the structures in the village of Susiya. The state’s notification reveals that the number of buildings slated for demolition suddenly doubled, without prior warning and contrary to the state’s previous commitments. This means that, where previously 20% of the structures were facing imminent demolition, now 40% of structures in the village – including the only school of the village and solar panels which are the only source of electricity – are facing immediate demolition. The school and the solar panels were built with European funding.

In 2012 we commissioned a master plan for our village, which was rejected several times by the Israeli authorities. The rejection prevents us from building houses together with the necessary infrastructure such as running water, electricity and paved roads to create a sustainable life in our village. It leaves us no choice but to remain on our land living in tents, under very difficult conditions, forbidden from building or repairing anything, in order to protect our land from the threat of annexation by the surrounding settlements. In the Israeli government’s recent response it was agreed to examine the legal principle of the planning issue. Yet despite the potential to develop a master plan for the village, the government states that it will demolish the 20 buildings immediately. And as we know from past experience, if they come to demolish once, nothing will prevent them coming back and trying to demolish the rest of our village.

The plan to demolish Susiya is a part of an extensive campaign of demolitions in the West Bank and East Jerusalem. Last year saw the largest number of demolitions in over a decade. This reality has nothing to do with democracy or the rule of law. Instead, the Israeli government has repeatedly violated its obligations to us as protected persons living under occupation. In accordance with international law, Israel has an obligation to provide for the needs of the local protected population, an obligation it openly shirks. Furthermore, it will be a war crime if the Israeli government forcefully displaces our village.

We therefore demand:

-No forced demolition of our village, Susiya
-The right to self-determination over the natural development of our village
-Acceptance of our master plan and thereby the planning and building of concrete houses and the necessary infrastructure

The Village Council of Susiya appeals to the international community to stand with us in all possible ways in the face of enforced expulsion by the Israeli state.

Nasser Nawajaa, Susiya Village Council spokesperson

With the support of voices of the international community


Grahame Morris MP, Chair, Labour Friends of Palestine & Middle East
Richard Burden MP, Labour Party
Caroline Lucas MP, Green Party
Amelia Womack, Deputy Leader, Green Party
Paul Maskey MP, Sinn Féin
Elisha McCallion MP, Sinn Féin
Mickey Brady MP, Sinn Féin
Chris Hazzard MP, Sinn Féin
Barry McElduff MP, Sinn Féin
Francie Molloy MP, Sinn Féin
Michelle Gildernew MP, Sinn Féin
Tommy Sheppard MP, Scottish National Party
Stewart Hosie MP, Scottish National Party
Philippa Whitford MP, Scottish National Party
Lord Norman Warner, Crossbench
Bob Doris MSP, Scottish National Party
Ben McPherson MSP, Scottish National Party
Ruth Maguire MSP, Scottish National Party
Sandra White MSP, Scottish National Party
James Dornan MSP, Scottish National Party
Clare Haughey MSP, Scottish National Party
Ivan McKee MSP, Scottish National Party
Bill Kidd MSP, Scottish National Party
Pauline McNeill MSP, Scottish Labour Party
Claudia Beamish MSP, Scottish Labour Party
John Finnie MSP, Scottish Green Party
Rona MacKay MSP, Scottish Green Party
Molly Scott Cato MEP, Green Party (UK)
Keith Taylor MEP, UK Green Party (UK)
Jude Kirton-Darling, MEP, Labour Party (UK)
Luisa Morgantini former MEP, Italy
Ivo Vajgl MEP, Democratic Party of Pensioners of Slovenia


Len McCluskey, General Secretary, Unite the Union
Bert Schouwenburg, International Officer, GMB
Mick Cash, General Secretary, RMT
Sally Hunt, General Secretary, UCU
Matt Wrack, General Secretary, FBU
Mick Whelan, General Secretary, ASLEF
Lindsey German, Convenor, Stop the War Coalition
Hugh Lanning, Chair, and Ben Jamal, Director, Palestine Solidarity Campaign
Dr. Omer El Hamdoon, President of The Muslim Association of Britain
Rev Chris Rose, Director, Amos Trust
Scottish Palestine Solidarity Campaign
Liberal Democrat Friends of Palestine
Justice for Palestinians, Leamington Spa
Sara Apps, Director, Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions UK
Friends of Sabeel
Kairos Britain


Adam Hanieh, SOAS
Laleh Khalili, SOAS
Rafeef Ziadah, SOAS
Bill Bowring, Birkbeck
Eyal Weizman, Goldsmiths
Ilan Pappé, Exeter
Judith Butler, Berkeley University of California
Mahmood Mamdani, Columbia University
Sara Ahmed, independent scholar and feminist writer
Aamer Anwar, Rector of Glasgow University and Human Rights Lawyer
Brian Eno, Musician, and campaigner
Ken Loach, Director
John Rees, Broadcaster, and writer


Addameer, Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association
Agricultural Development Association
Arab Center for Agricultural Development
Alrowwad, Cultural and Arts Society
Arab Agronomists Association
Asala, Palestinian Businesswomen's Association
Bisan Center for Research and Development
Burj Al-luqluq, Social Center Society
Defense for Children International
Economic and Social Development Center of Palestine
Hawwa, Society for Culture and Arts
Health, Development, Information and Policy Institute
Health Work Committees Palestine
Legal Aid and Human Rights Center
Land Research Center
Ma’an Development Center
Mothers School Society
Najdeh Association
Popular Art Center
The Palestinian Farmers' Union
Palestinian Medical Relief Society
Palestinian Union of Health Care Committees
Palestinian Working Woman Society for Development
Rural Women’s Development Society
Society of St. Yves
Palestinian Youth Union
Women’s Centre for Legal Aid and Counseling

European Coordination of Committees and Associations for Palestine
Ireland Palestine Solidarity Campaign
Robert Soeterik, Chair, Netherlands Palestine Committee
Jeff Halper, Co-Founder, Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions
Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions, Finland
Diensten Onderzoek Centrum Palestina, Netherlands
ViaVelo Palestina, Belgium
Plateforme Watermael-Boitsfort Palestine, Belgium
Asian Peasant Coalition (representing 43 member organisations across 11 Asian countries)
Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (Peasant Movement of the Philippines)
Pagkakaisa para sa Tunay na Repormang Agraryo (Unity for Genuine Agrarian Reform), Philippines
Tanggol Magsasaka (Peasant Network for Land, Justice and Human Rights), Philippines
Resistance and Solidarity against Agrochemical TNCs (RESIST), Philippines
The Association of Norwegian NGOs for Palestine
Palestina Solidariteit
The Palestine Solidarity Association of Sweden
Belgian Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel
Netherlands Palestine Committee
BDS BerlinCheckpoint Singers, Brussels
Palestina Solidariteit vzw, Belgium
Stefano Casi, Vice President, Assopace Palestina, Italy

fly bird (26)
Wednesday December 13, 2017, 5:10 pm
Israel’s Stall-Forever ‘Peace’ Plan.
September 23, 2017

Despite boosting the idea of Mideast peace, President Trump shields Israel in its resistance to a workable agreement with the Palestinians, as ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar explained in a Sept. 19 speech.
Paul R. Pillar

President Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, whom the President has entrusted with, among many other things, searching for an Israeli-Palestinian peace, said regarding that task: “We don’t want a history lesson. How does that help us get peace? Let’s not focus on that. We’ve read enough books.”

He’s wrong. Without taking into account the history of this conflict, one will never understand it adequately, much less be able to identify formulas that will furnish the necessary respect for, and meet the minimum needs of, both sides.

One could go way back, but let us instead skip to the point in history when war-exhausted Britain, responsible for administering the mandate of Palestine, was facing increasing violence from the contending communities of, on one hand, Arabs who had lived in Palestine for centuries, and on the other hand, Zionists who had begun to settle there over the previous few decades.

Britain dumped the problem into the lap of the United Nations, where the General Assembly approved in 1947 a partition plan for Palestine that would create two new states, one controlled by Jews and one by Arabs. The resolution approving the plan is the one internationally certified birth certificate of the State of Israel.

The population of Palestine at the time was about two-thirds Arab and slightly less than one-third Jewish, with the bulk of the latter representing immigration in the 30 years since the Balfour Declaration. Jews owned less than 7 percent of the land. Under the partition plan, however, the Jewish state would receive 56 percent of Palestine and the Arab state 43 percent, with the remaining one percent being an international zone in Jerusalem. The population of the projected Arab state would be almost entirely Arab, while the Jewish-controlled state would be 45 percent Arab.

In the war that subsequently broke out, the superior skill and organization of the Zionist forces resulted in conquest of territory beyond the boundaries of the Jewish state in the UN partition plan, such that, at the time of the resulting armistice, the new State of Israel comprised 78 percent of Palestine, with Arabs left in control of 22 percent. Large population displacement occurred during the war. More than 700,000 Palestinian Arabs were expelled from, or fled from, their homes. Between 400 and 600 Palestinian villages were sacked, and Palestinian city life was virtually extinguished. This set of events is what Palestinians came to refer to as the Nakba or catastrophe.

A Single Story

This history is part of a single continuous story of issues that are discussed today as the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and the so-called peace process. One cannot excise that history. It is an inseparable part of attitudes, emotions, positions, and demands that exist today.

In the seven decades since those events of the late 1940s, Israel has grown into the state that is unquestionably the most militarily powerful in the entire Middle East, as well as being in many respects economically powerful. The next big accretion of territory under Israel’s control came from its conquests in the 1967 war, which Israel started with an attack on Egypt amid brinksmanship in the Gulf of Aqaba by Egyptian strongman Gamal Abdel Nasser.

Since that war, Israel has sustained a program of colonization of the conquered territories. Approximately 600,000 Jewish settlers now live outside Israel’s 1967 boundaries, in the West Bank and the eastern part of what Israel defines as Jerusalem.

Palestinian Arabs, in contrast, have remained sunken in a state of weakness and subjugation. For those in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, this status has included, among many other things, having nearly every aspect of life, from building of homes to daily movement to places of livelihood, subjected to the strictures of Israeli military occupation.

For those in the Gaza Strip, the subjugation has taken a different form, in which Israel has maintained control of air, sea, and, with varying degrees of Egyptian regime cooperation, land access to the Strip. With a suffocating blockade in effect much of the time, punctuated by the destruction of periodic military offensives, the Strip is one of the more miserable densely populated pieces of territory in the world.

Changes of Posture

The political and diplomatic positions of both sides have changed significantly over these seven decades. Whatever movement there has been in a direction that would appear to make resolution of the conflict more possible has come in response to some form of force or pressure. This has been true on both the Israeli and Palestinian sides. A detailed accounting of such changes, and of the circumstances that have led to them, can be found in the excellent book by Nathan Thrall, a senior analyst with the International Crisis Group, published this year under the title The Only Language They Understand.

On the Israeli side, for example, Israel’s limited territorial withdrawals from Syria and the Sinai following the 1973 war were in response to the shock of military setbacks and vulnerability that the war exposed, together with pressure from the United States, which had been stung by the Arab oil embargo. Prime Minister Menachem Begin’s acceptance at Camp David in 1978 of a framework for a projected, eventual negotiated resolution of the conflict was in response to pressure applied by Jimmy Carter and Anwar Sadat.

Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir’s agreement in 1991 to attend a peace conference in Madrid was in direct response to pressure from Secretary of State James Baker in the form of a threat to withhold $10 billion in loan guarantees for housing for Russian emigrants — which, by the way, was the last time the United States applied this sort of pressure on Israel.

The record refutes the idea that reassurance to Israel is what is most required to obtain Israel flexibility regarding the conflict with the Palestinians. But this idea persists because it is so politically comfortable here in the United States.

The same sort of dynamic has taken place on the Palestinian side. The positions and postures of the Palestinian mainstream have undergone a great evolution from a refusal to have any dealing with Israel and the waging of armed struggle against it, to explicit recognition of the State of Israel, commitment to a negotiated resolution of the conflict, commitment to two states living side-by-side in peace, and even an acceptance of pre-1967 Israeli military conquests and a reduction of territorial aspirations for a Palestinian state to the 22 percent of land that was left. The background to this evolution has been setback after setback to the Palestinians, including military defeats in Jordan and Lebanon, exile to Tunisia, and political weakness that is most apparent right here in the United States.

An Asymmetrical Conflict

While the two sides have exhibited similar histories regarding the relationship between pressure and flexibility, we are left with a huge asymmetry. There is an enormous difference in strength, obviously militarily but also economically and in terms of political leverage in the United States.

There has been a large difference in physical and human consequences. Far more Palestinians than Israelis have died in this conflict. Even going back to the Arab riots in Palestine in the 1930s, the ratio of Arabs to Jews killed was about ten-to-one. The discrepancy has been even greater in more recent conflict. During Operation Protective Edge, the Israeli military operation in the Gaza Strip in 2014, 2,100 Palestinians were killed, about two-thirds of whom were civilians. Israeli deaths from all causes totaled 72, all but six of whom were soldiers. The ratio in the last previous war in Gaza, in 2008-2009, was similar: 14 Israelis killed; over 1,400 Palestinians killed.

The asymmetry is also one between an occupier and the occupied. This seems to get overlooked in mentions of whether Palestinian leaders want a negotiated settlement. For the overwhelming majority of Palestinians, a negotiated two-state solution would be better than what they have now, and the overwhelming majority of Palestinians realize that it would be. They also realize that an agreement negotiated with Israel is the only way a two-state solution would ever be reached.

Conditions that Palestinian leaders have sometimes attached to negotiations should not be that hard to understand. A freeze on more construction of Israeli settlements is understandable because such construction obviously narrows the negotiating space for any peace agreement, and because nobody’s patience is unlimited for something called a peace process to be dragged out endlessly while more such facts on the ground continue to be established unilaterally, making a two-state solution ever harder to achieve.

Resistance to acceding to Israeli demands about calling Israel a “Jewish state” reflects how this demand was never made of Egypt or Jordan when they made peace treaties with Israel, how such descriptive demands are not part of normal recognition and diplomacy between states, how the PLO long ago explicitly recognized the State of Israel, how acceding to the Israeli demand would be an explicit Palestinian declaration that their Arab brethren within Israel are second-class citizens, and how such accession would be a step toward excusing Israel from accepting any responsibility, even symbolically, for the events of the late 1940s.

The asymmetry extends to how much there is left for either side to concede. Again, it is part of the basic difference between an occupier, who has the power to end an occupation, and the occupied, who does not. For the Palestinians, the story of this conflict, and of the diplomacy surrounding it, has been a tale of successive reductions in what they expect, and what they are expected to expect.

From being what was still the large majority of residents of Palestine even at the time of Israel’s creation, they have seen their prospective home go down to 43 percent of Palestine under the U.N. partition plan, to 22 percent after the warfare of the 1940s. And since the 1967 war, they have seen the 22 percent become not a floor but a ceiling in anything that is talked about as a future Palestinian state. The discourse is about a fraction of a fraction of a fraction of what had been their homeland.

Having been backed to a wall, there is very little room for still more backing up, at least in any way consistent with any Palestinian leader meeting the most basic nationalist aspirations and demand for respect for his people, failing which the leader himself forfeits respect and support.

On the Israeli side, one of the relevant pieces of background is the rightward trend in Israeli politics that has continued ever since Begin’s Likud displaced Labor as Israel’s dominant political party. Some members of Netanyahu’s government have been more direct than he has been in calling for things such as immediate annexation by Israel of most of the West Bank.

Israel and the Status Quo

Another relevant piece of background, consistent with the observation that the only significant movement in the position of either side has come when that side has been under pressure, is that the Israeli government simply does not feel sufficient motivation to end the occupation and reach an agreement with the Palestinians. From that government’s viewpoint, the status quo is tolerable, even comfortable.

Israeli has its overwhelming regional military superiority. It has its prosperity; it is among the richest one-fifth of the countries in the world in GDP per capita, according to figures from the International Monetary Fund. As suggested by the previously mentioned casualty figures, the immediate physical and human costs of the conflict itself are sustainable and below levels that would make them a significant political liability for leaders. The ugly aspects of occupation are walled off, literally, and beyond the line of sight of most Israelis, meaning that they do not represent any kind of political imperative to change the status quo.

Sure, there is international criticism, but that is something else that Israeli leaders have long experience living with, deflecting, and even turning to their domestic political advantage as protectors of the nation against what are described as unfair critics and even enemies of Israel.

Most important of all, there is the unquestioning backing of the United States, and the political lock that underlies it. That backing takes the form of $3.8 billion in annual subsidies with no strings attached, no compensatory demands being made about Israeli policy, and a diplomatic posture that makes it news when, as once occurred late in the Obama administration, the United States merely abstained on, rather than vetoing, as it repeatedly has done, a U.N. Security Council resolution expressing the critical view that the overwhelming majority of the international community has of Israel’s colonization project in the territories.

Weigh all this against what the Israeli government would face internally if it were to move to end the occupation and help to create a Palestinian state. This would immediately create a severe domestic political crisis within the dominant political right, featuring the resistance of a settler population that now constitutes about a tenth of Israel’s entire Jewish population. It is easy to see why the current government is not attracted to a change of its current course.

It has been observed, correctly, that of three major possible attributes of the current, and future, State of Israel — namely, being Jewish, being democratic, and being in control of all the land between the Mediterranean and the Jordan River — Israel can be any two of those things, but it is impossible for it to be all three. It is impossible because of demographic facts about the peoples who live in that land.

Israeli leaders in power do not usually address that trilemma explicitly and publicly, but occasionally we get a more direct glimpse of the priorities. The Israeli minister of justice, Ayelet Shaked, has made clear she considers the democracy part to be subordinate to the Jewishness part. She has said that it was “not primarily Roman law or the democratic tradition of the Athenian polis that shaped and forged the modern democratic tradition in Europe or the United States, but Jewish tradition — joined, of course, by other traditions. It is precisely when we wish to promote advanced processes of democratization in Israel that we must deepen its Jewish identity.”

As for the role of civil and political rights in general, Shaked says, “Zionism should not – and I’m saying here that it will not – bow its head to a system of individual rights interpreted in a universal manner.”

Obsolete Transitional Arrangements

Meanwhile, on the Palestinian side, political dysfunction persists that is partly a legacy of failed peace process efforts of the past. The leader of the Palestine Liberation Organization, which is the recognized interlocutor for peace negotiations, is Mahmoud Abbas, who gets more attention for his other role as head of the Palestinian Authority.

The P.A. was established under the Oslo process in the 1990s to be only a transitional mechanism. It was supposed to yield to something more permanent, like a real Palestinian state, in five or so years. The P.A. long ago passed its sell-by date. Many Palestinians now regard it, with good reason, as mostly an administrative auxiliary to the Israeli occupation. Stasis has set in. Abbas is now in the 13th year of what was supposed to have been a four-year term as P.A. president.

The P.A., and the Fatah-dominated PLO, also do not represent all of the Palestinian body politic. They do not represent refugees, and they do not represent the stream of opinion embodied in Hamas, which won the last free and fair Palestinian parliamentary election, has made clear it is prepared to live in peace in a Palestinian state side-by-side with the State of Israel, and has tried to observe the cease-fires negotiated after the last two Gaza wars.

Israel and the United States refused to accept that election result, and Israel has done everything it can to sustain division between Hamas and Abbas’s P.A., such as by withholding tax receipts owed to the Palestinians when the P.A. has made a move to resolve differences with Hamas. We can expect the same Israeli reaction to an initiative announced by Hamas this week, in which it says it will dissolve its own administration of Gaza in favor of a new joint administration with the P.A. and participation in fresh Palestinian elections.

Recent internal developments on the Israeli side, and specifically Netanyahu’s legal and political problems stemming from multiple corruption cases, only make matters worse regarding any peace process. The prime minister’s response has been to tie himself ever more closely to the right-wing coalition partners whose support he needs to stay in office. That means more of an inflexible hard line on anything having to do with the Palestinians. Netanyahu recently said to an audience of West Bank settlers, “We are here to stay forever. We will deepen our roots, build, strengthen and settle.”

Many informed observers believe that the two-state solution is dead. I don’t believe it is dead in the sense of technical feasibility. Despite how far the Israeli colonization of the West Bank has gone, it still would be possible to construct a peace agreement along lines that have been well known for quite some time, based on the 1967 borders with mutually agreed upon land swaps, and creative ways to deal with sticky issues such as right of return and control of holy places in Jerusalem.

But what the pessimistic observers accurately note, besides the ever-narrowing bargaining space from construction of additional facts on the ground, is how much of the edifice on which the so-called peace process is based has been regarded by one side as a basis for avoiding an ultimate peace agreement rather than building one. The Oslo formula that created the P.A. was based, on Israeli insistence, on the 1978 Camp David framework agreement, which in turn was based on an autonomy plan from Begin that was designed not to establish Palestinian self-determination but to prevent it.

This has been a matter of peace processing indefinitely while the side in control has created still more facts on the ground. Begin’s successor Yitzhak Shamir was quite candid about this when he said, ”I would have carried on autonomy talks for ten years, and meanwhile we would have reached half a million people in Judea and Samaria.”

Trump’s Posture

And now we have, in the country with the greatest potential outside leverage over all this, the Trump administration. Donald Trump said some things early in his campaign about being even-handed, but then he made his peace with (the intensely pro-Israeli billionaire) Sheldon Adelson, and from the time he spoke later during the campaign to AIPAC, most of what he has said and done on this issue would have easily passed muster in the Israeli prime minister’s office.

His son-in-law the envoy comes from a family with connections to West Bank settlements. Trump’s bankruptcy lawyer, whom he has appointed as ambassador to Israel, has direct personal involvement in aiding a West Bank settlement, has likened liberal, pro-peace American Jews to Nazi collaborators, and recently departed from a long-established U.S. diplomatic lexicon by referring to the “alleged occupation”.

Trump has backed away from the two-state solution, which had been the explicit U.S. objective of the previous couple of administrations, Republican and Democratic, and the implicit objective of the couple of administrations before that, Republican and Democratic. In an extraordinary statement, the State Department spokeswoman recently said that to recommit to the two-state solution would constitute “bias.”

As former U.S. Ambassador to Israel Daniel Kurtzer commented in an op-ed, “her words indicate that the Trump administration itself is extremely biased — in favor of hardliners in … Netanyahu’s coalition who want the United States and Israel to abandon the two- state outcome.”

Those hardliners, and the Trump administration, have recently been looking to what is referred to as the “outside-in” concept — the idea the other Arab states will lean on the Palestinians to accept something less than a real state. But if the key to a peace settlement rested with those other Arab states, then Israel could pick up off the table what has been on the table for 15 years: the Arab League peace initiative, which offers full recognition of, and peace with, Israel by all Arab states and a formal declaration that the Arab-Israeli conflict is over, in return for an end to the occupation and establishment of a Palestinian state.

Genuine peace with the region still requires genuine peace with the Palestinians. Neither the Saudis nor other Arab leaders will sign off on bantustans for their Arab brethren in Palestine.

And so the prospect is for this long-running conflict to continue to run, with all of the substantial human, economic, political, and diplomatic costs that the conflict has entailed. Only a two-state solution can realize the national aspirations both of Jewish Israelis and Palestinian Arabs. Without it, Israel will continue not to have recognized borders, not be at peace with its region, and not be anything other than a heavily militarized state and in many ways a pariah state. It will, as Netanyahu has put it, “live forever by the sword.”

Without a two-state solution, Palestinians will continue to endure their all-too-well documented subjugation and suffering, and will exhibit the severe discontent that breeds extremism.

And without such a solution, the United States will continue to be associated with acceptance of this festering and undesirable situation, will be seen as condoning and supporting what the overwhelming majority of the world considers a gross injustice, and will continue to be the target of violent extremists who, again and again, cite this issue as one of their principal motivators and rallying cries.

(Pillar was speaking to the Worcester, Massachusetts, World Affairs Council.)

fly bird (26)
Monday December 25, 2017, 9:12 am

Palestine : A girl’s chutzpah -

Ahed Tamimi, 16, is a heroine, a Palestinian heroine. Maybe the intifada of slappings will succeed where all other methods of resistance have failed

Gideon Levy Dec 20, 2017[en]

Last Tuesday, Israel Defense Forces soldiers shot Hamed al-Masri, 15, in the head, wounding the unarmed boy from Salfit severely. On Friday, soldiers shot the unarmed Mohammed Tamimi, also 15, in the head, wounding the Nabi Saleh boy severely. Also on Friday, soldiers killed Ibrahim Abu Thuraya, a double amputee, shooting him in the head, too. On the same day Ahed Tamimi, 16, stood in the courtyard of her home with her girlfriend and slapped an IDF officer who had invaded her home.
Israel woke from its slumber angry: How dare she. The three victims of the barbaric shooting didn’t interest Israelis, and the media didn’t even bother to report on them. But the slap (and kick) by Tamimi provoked rage. How dare she slap an IDF soldier? A soldier whose friends slap, beat, abduct and of course shoot Palestinians almost every day.
She really has chutzpah, Tamimi. She broke the rules. Slapping is permitted only by soldiers. She is the real provocation, not the soldier who invaded her house. She, who had three close relatives killed by the occupation, whose parents have been detained countless times and whose father was sentenced to four months in prison for participating in a demonstration at the entrance to a grocery store – she dared to resist a soldier. Palestinian chutzpah. Tamimi was supposed to fall in love with the soldier who invaded her house, to toss rice at him, but, ingrate that she is, she rewarded him with a slap. It’s all because of the “incitement.” Otherwise she certainly wouldn’t hate her conqueror.
But there are other sources of the unbridled lust for revenge against Tamimi. (Education Minister Naftali Bennett: “She should finish her life in prison.”) The girl from Nabi Saleh shattered several myths for Israelis. Worst of all, she dared to damage the Israeli myth of masculinity. Suddenly it turns out that the heroic soldier, who watches over us day and night with daring and courage, is being pitted against a girl with empty hands. What’s going to happen to our machismo, which Tamimi shattered so easily, and our testosterone?
Suddenly Israelis saw the cruel, dangerous enemy they are confronting: a curly-haired 16-year-old girl. All the demonization and dehumanization in the sycophantic media were shattered at once when confronted by a girl in a blue sweater.

Israelis lost their heads. This is not what they were told. They’re used to hearing about terrorists and terror and murderous behavior. It’s hard to accuse Ahed Tamimi of all that; she didn’t even have scissors in her hands. Where’s the Palestinian cruelty? Where’s the danger? Where’s the evil? You could lose your mind. Suddenly all the cards were reshuffled: For one rare moment the enemy looked so human. Of course you can rely on Israel’s machinery of propaganda and brainwashing, which are so efficient, to assassinate Tamimi’s character soon enough. She too will be labeled a cruel terrorist who was born to kill; it will be said she has no justifiable motives and that there’s no context for her behavior.

Ahed Tamimi is a heroine, a Palestinian heroine. She succeeded in driving Israelis crazy. What will the military correspondents and right-wing inciters and security experts say? Why good are 8200, Oketz, Duvdevan, Kfir and all these other special units if at the end of the day the IDF is confronting a helpless civilian population that is tired of the occupation, embodied by a girl with a kaffiyeh on her shoulder?
If only there were many more like her. Maybe girls like her will be able to shake Israelis up. Maybe the intifada of slappings will succeed where all other methods of resistance, violent and non-violent, have failed.
Meanwhile Israel has reacted the only way it knows how: a nighttime abduction from her home and detention with her mother. But in his heart of hearts, every decent Israeli likely knows not only who is right and who isn’t, but also who is strong and who is weak. The soldier armed from head to toe who invades a house that doesn’t belong to him, or the unarmed girl defending her home and her lost honor with her bare hands, with a slap?

fly bird (26)
Monday December 25, 2017, 9:33 pm
Court Orders Tamimi Under Further Interrogation For Four More Days.
December 26, 2017

The “Ofer” Israeli military court decided, Monday, to remand world-renowned teen journalist ‘Ahed Tamimi, for four more days, after refusing to release her on bail, and accusing her of “threatening Israel’s security.”

‘Ahed Tamimi, 17, will be sent to court again this coming Friday, and is facing charges, which include “attacking officers,” along with her detained cousin, Nour Naji Tamimi, 21, when the army raided her family home in Nabi Saleh town, near Ramallah, last Tuesday, before abducting her along with her mother, Nariman Tamimi, 43.

The court will later be determining the fate of her detained mother, and cousin. Both ‘’Ahed and Nour, were seen on tape, arguing with Israeli soldiers who invaded Nabi Saleh.

When Ahed was 12, her mother’s cousin, Mustafa Tamimi, was killed before her eyes during a protest, shot in the head by a gas canister.

One year later, she witnessed the army shoot and kill her uncle Rashadi. Last week, her cousin Mohammed, nearly her age, was shot in the face by a rubber-coated bullet that penetrated his skull. He remains unconscious.”

fly bird (26)
Thursday December 28, 2017, 3:20 pm
Jerusalem still speaks Arabic.

It doesn't matter where anyone builds their diplomatic palaces. Jerusalem still speaks Arabic. I've heard her.

Hundreds of restaurants offer falafel, hummus, shawarma, pomegranate juice, and knafeh. Believe me. I've tried them all. But there aren't any delis. No corned beef sandwiches on rye. No bagel shops. No lox. Don't get me wrong. All those things are delicious. They're just not there. Because Jerusalem eats rice and yogurt with every meal. She uses bread as a spoon. She checks her teeth for leftover tabbouli. She's an Arab.

Certain aromas waft through the air. Cumin. Coriander. Nutmeg. Cinnamon. Turmeric. Sumac. Allspice. Those spices don't come from Poland and Brooklyn. Her women push their herbs in her markets. Thyme. Sage. Basil. Mint. Lots of mint. Those herbs don't come from Russia and Miami Beach. I've hung out with her. She drinks coffee that's almost too strong for human consumption. She eats parsley-infused meats. She sweats garlic like the rest of us. She's an Arab.

It's easy to get confused in her alleyways. They meander every which way, twisting and turning, each corner bringing a new little journey. But if you ask for directions from one part of the Old city to another, her children will just tell you, "Just go straight." Jerusalem is still an Arab. I promise you.

Look in her closets. She collects ornately embroidered gowns.
Visit her weddings. She "changes the light bulb" when she dances.
Go out to dinner with her. She fights over the bill.

Talk to her for more than five minutes. She asks you if you're married. And if you're not... Well, then prepare yourself for a much longer, and quite uncomfortable, conversation.

She wears a keffiyeh. Sometimes it's because she's protesting. And sometimes it's just to keep warm.

When she has some time for herself to listen to some music, she sings along with Fairouz, Abdel Halim, and Um Kalthum.

Jerusalem's been Arab for 1400 years. Crusader campaigns tried to change her. It didn't work. Israeli colonization, settlement, and profanity have tried to change her. They've failed terribly. Some stuttering speech about an embassy won't succeed either.

She's been through decades of foreign occupation, more than once. She has suffered the attempted theft of her heritage. She has watched the dispossession, expulsion, and looting of her children's lives, homes, and histories. She has even endured the propaganda that she still solely belongs to someone who doesn't remotely understand the beautiful creature she grown into today. Yet, despite these attempts to defeat her, Jerusalem still speaks Arabic. With a Palestinian accent.

She's one of us. Don’t worry. She can handle this.

fly bird (26)
Thursday December 28, 2017, 5:01 pm
Army Warns Cabinet of Military Confrontation in Gaza.
December 27, 2017

Leaders of the Israeli occupation army warned, during a cabinet session, of the gravity situation in the blockaded Gaza Strip, which could end up with the outbreak of a new armed confrontation with the Palestinian resistance factions.

According to Israeli Channel 2, ministers were told, at the cabinet meeting, that circumstances in the besieged Gaza Strip are on the verge of an explosion and are reminiscent of events that preceded the 2014 summer war.

09/02/14 VIDEO: Gaza City’s Devastated Al-Shuja’eyya Suburb

Israeli senior officials warned ministers that the situation in the Gaza Strip is volatile and that, although Hamas had no interest in going to a new round of war, circumstances could drive to it.

Al Ray further reports that the assessment is based on a combination of the worsening humanitarian situation, failure to pay the salaries of employees in the Gaza Strip for several months, public disappointment over bogging down the reconciliation agreement, and the new developments regarding the Jerusalem.

The officials added that Hamas feels frustration at the Israeli army’s neutralization of its tunnels, and punishing it over a new round of rockets being fired into Israel, which could lead to the launching of another fight.

During the discussion, Israeli ministers provided possible solutions to prevent escalation, including the allowance of Gaza workers to work in settlements adjacent to the Strip; however, the Shin Bet opposes this, and is to formulate a plan, presenting it to the cabinet within three weeks.

This is a long, deliberately cruel siege and psychological war, inflicted on Palestinians in the Gaza Strip.

fly bird (26)
Friday December 29, 2017, 1:49 pm
#IamAhed or #StandUpForAhed
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