Israeli guard cleared in Palestinian boy’s death
AP 31 Oct — An Israeli court cleared a border policeman Wednesday in the shooting the death of a 10-year-old Palestinian boy in July 2008 during a demonstration where youths were hurling rocks at security forces. Judge Liora Frenkel said the Israeli officer, Omri Abu, violated rules of engagement by opening fire at protesters in the West Bank village of Naalin even though he was not in danger. But she said the prosecution did not prove beyond a reasonable doubt that a bullet from Abu’s rifle struck Ahmed Moussa in the forehead, killing him.
Land, property theft & destruction / Ethnic cleansing
Research group: ‘Natural’ settlement growth a myth
BETHLEHEM (Ma‘an) 31 Oct — Israel has already built over three times more settlement buildings this year than the state’s own population growth figures would require, a Palestinian research group said Wednesday. Israel’s justification for settlement expansion based on natural population growth is a myth, the director of the Applied Research Institute – Jerusalem, Jad Isaac, told EU and international representatives at a briefing in Bethlehem. According to Israel’s Central Bureau of Statistics, Israel’s natural population growth rate is 1.7 percent, meaning the 628,000 settlers would need 2,541 new houses each year, Isaac said. To date this year, Israel has built 9,799 settler homes, which is more than 3.5 times natural population growth, according to ARIJ’s figures. In 2011, Israel added 11,526 buildings to its settlements, more than 4.5 times growth figures, the ARIJ briefing explained.
Israeli group: 2 new outposts established in West Bank
BETHLEHEM (Ma‘an) 31 Oct — Two illegal settler outposts have been recently established in the West Bank, representing the first such developments since 2005, Peace Now announced Wednesday. Foundations for Nahalei Tal, north of Ramallah, and Tzofim North, in Qalqiliya, have been built over the last few months and the outposts now contain mobile homes, electricity, water, roads and infrastructure, the Israeli peace group said. “As opposed to the sporadic outposts that are created by the hill-top youth and evacuated every few weeks by the security forces, it is evident that the two new outposts are highly supported by the authorities,” Peace Now said.
Fresh off the plane, Ethiopian Jews find a home away from home
Haaretz 29 Oct — Wendem Guade, his wife and their six young children were among 250 Ethiopian Jews on the charter flight marking the launch of an operation to bring the last remaining Falashmura to Israel. Operation Dove’s Wings, as the program has been dubbed, is a joint effort by the government and the Jewish Agency, which plan to complete it by October 2013.
MKs: Demolish illegal construction in e. Jerusalem
JPost 30 Oct — National Union MKs Uri Ariel and Arieh Eldad slammed Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu for allowing illegal building to continue unabated, during a tour of east Jerusalem on Tuesday. Ariel is the chairman of the Knesset State Control Committee, which has focused on illegal building in the Arab sector, especially in east Jerusalem’s Silwan neighborhood, in a series of meetings over the past year. [note the small ‘e’ in the title – this is not a typo.]
IOA serves 10 demolition notices in Silwan
OCCUPIED JERUSALEM (PIC) 31 Oct — The Israeli occupation authorities (IOA) served ten demolition notices on Wednesday to Palestinian families in Silwan town in occupied Jerusalem. Eyewitnesses told the PIC reporter that Israeli occupation forces escorted municipality staffers who distributed the notices in Bustan suburb and in a number of other nearby suburbs.
Israeli bulldozers demolish sheds near Jerusalem
JERUSALEM (WAFA) 31 Oct — Bulldozers of the Israeli municipality of West Jerusalem Wednesday demolished sheds used as animal barns belonging to a Palestinian family in the village of Nabi Samuel, northwest of Jerusalem, according to one of the family members. The family member told WAFA that Israeli bulldozers of the municipality, protected by soldiers, demolished the sheds, causing severe financial loss to the family.
Israeli forces demolish 2 homes in Jericho
JERICHO (Ma‘an) 31 Oct — Israeli forces on Wednesday demolished two Palestinian homes north of Jericho in the central West Bank, the governor said. Forces demolished the homes of Zaher al-Kalouti and Tayel Afaneh and damaged the electricity network in al-Stieh, locals told Ma‘an. Jericho governor Majed al-Fatyani said the demolitions were part of an Israeli policy to suppress Palestinian life in the Jordan Valley.
Israeli forces ‘destroy crops’ east of Hebron
HEBRON (Ma‘an) 30 Oct — Israeli forces destroyed four dunams of crops east of Hebron early Tuesday morning, locals said. Ghassan Baser told Ma‘an he awoke to find Israeli soldiers destroying his turnip and cauliflower crops as well as his irrigation system in al-Baqqar, causing 50,000 shekels ($12,840) worth of damage. Baser says Israeli authorities have been pressuring him to leave his land. He says he will replant the land and will never leave. Al-Baqqar borders the illegal Israeli settlement Karmi Zur.
Israeli Violence / Raids / Illegal arrests
Medics: Teenager hit by settler car
HEBRON (Ma‘an) 31 Oct — A 13-year-old girl was knocked down by a settler car near Hebron on Wednesday, medics said. Alif Abu Ayyash was hit by the car in Beit Ummar and taken to hospital with serious injuries, Red Crescent official Nasser Qabaja told Ma‘an. Locals said that Israeli army and police vehicles arrived at the scene.
Report: ‘Soldiers kidnapped 292 Palestinians in October’
IMEMC 1 Nov — The Ahrar Center for Detainees’ Studies and Human Rights reported that Israeli soldiers kidnapped in October 292 Palestinians in different parts of the West Bank, and the Gaza Strip, adding that among the kidnapped are 26 children … The report indicated that most of the arrests took place in Jerusalem, as the army kidnapped 103 Palestinians, including 17 children, 5 women and 5 cameramen, in October. Hebron comes next in the highest number of arrests, as the soldiers kidnapped 70 residents, including 9 children and three women, including the Noura Al-Ja’bary, the wife of detainee Mohammad Abu Warda. Al-Khuffash stated that, comparing to September, October witnessed an increase in the number of arrests carried out by the Israeli army
Israeli forces arrest 24 across the West Bank
NABLUS (Ma‘an) 31 Oct — Israeli forces detained 24 people across the West Bank overnight Tuesday, Israel’s army said. Seven people were arrested in Nablus, five in Ramallah, three in Jenin, three in Hebron, two in the south Hebron hills, two in Tuqu‘, one in Anata and one in Yatta, an Israeli army spokeswoman said. They were detained “on suspicion of illegal activities”, the spokeswoman added … Around 40 percent of Palestinian men living in the occupied territories have been detained by Israel at some point in their lives.
IOF carry out night raids on homes in W. Bank, kidnap citizens
JENIN (PIC) 31 Oct — The Israeli occupation forces (IOF) carried out at dawn Wednesday violent raids on homes in Jenin city and its refugee camp, kidnapped a citizen and established temporary checkpoints. Eyewitnesses told a reporter for the Palestinian information center (PIC) that a dozen Israeli military vehicles stormed Jenin refugee camp at two o’clock in the morning and ransacked the house of Abdulfadel Jad’awn before kidnapping him to an unknown destination. They added that the troops also raided homes in the areas of Hadaf and Wadi Burkin in the refugee camp and patrolled neighborhoods. The IOF also invaded the neighborhoods of Marah and Jaberiyat in Jenin city and stayed combing them until six o’clock in the morning.
Israeli forces arrest 11 Palestinians in West Bank
WEST BANK (WAFA) 31 Oct — Israeli forces Wednesday arrested 11 Palestinians from across the West Bank, according to security sources. They told WAFA that Israeli soldiers stormed the Hebron area at dawn and arrested four Palestinians, including an elderly and a 20-year-old … In the northern east area of Jerusalem, forces stormed the house of journalist Eyad al-Rifaee, searching and destroying his house contents, before arresting him.In the Nablus area, forces arrested five Palestinians, age 19, 22, 23, in addition to two aged 20.
Israeli forces storm village, arrest Palestinians in Hebron hills, says group
AT-TUWANI, SOUTH HEBRON HILLS (WAFA) 31 Oct – The Israeli army and police Wednesday stormed Ar-Rakeez village, south of the Hebron hills, stopped the works on a new water cistern, attacked and arrested the owner, according a press release by the rights group Operation Dove. It said the soldiers ordered the workers to stop working on the water cistern, but the owner, Said Raba’, refused, as he has not received any prior orders by the DCO … Three soldiers and a policeman early morning were beating the Palestinian man while other soldiers and policemen were holding him down, kneeled and handcuffed, said the release. The beaten Palestinian was brought to Kiryat Arba Police Station and charged of aggression to soldiers and is currently in prison awaiting his trial. It said that Raba’s 21-year-old daughter also received a hit during the military aggression on her father and was transferred to hospital for treatment. She didn’t suffer any internal damage, but she continues to have abdominal pain. Once the Israeli army left, about fifty Palestinians started working on the water cistern, which is now completed, it said.
Video: Woman, 50, arrested in Hebron raid
BETHLEHEM (Ma‘an) 31 Oct — Activists have released a video showing Israeli soldiers handcuffing a 50-year-old woman to a chair and arresting her in Hebron city center early Tuesday morning. The video shows Gamila Hassan al-Shalaldeh protesting the arrest of her 20-year-old son Ragheb al-Salaymeh as he is taken, blindfolded and handcuffed, from their home in Shuhada street. The woman collapses and is surrounded by around nine heavily armed soldiers, who then seat her in a chair. Later, they handcuff her to the chair and at 5:20 she is heard crying and shouting “Leave me alone, I want to go home.” A soldier tells the cameraman to stop recording. He continues to film from inside a home, and the woman is seen being taken away in a police van.
Jewish settlers throw rocks on Palestinian cars
RAMALLAH (PIC) 31 Oct — Jewish settlers attacked Palestinian vehicles travelling along the road from Ramallah to Nablus damaging a number of cars, local sources said. They said that the attack on Tuesday night took place near the settlement of Shilo located to the east of Ramallah. The sources said that one car was completely damaged while a big rock smashed the window of another car and settled inside it. Jewish settlers frequently attack Palestinian cars travelling near their settlements.
Israeli man acquitted of attacking Palestinian over police failures
Haaretz 31 Oct — Once again a court has acquitted due to the mistakes of the Judea and Samaria District police. The Jerusalem Magistrate’s Court last month acquitted a resident of Ma’ale Adumim who was accused of attacking a Palestinian, after investigative mistakes by the police prevented the truth from being determined … In the present case, the man from Ma’ale Adumim, who worked in maintenance at one of the beaches on the Dead Sea, was indicted for an event that took place in June 2008. While he was working at the beach, he noticed seven Palestinians who snuck into the beach without passing through the entrance. The indictment stated that he identified himself as a police officer and then beat three of them. He even threatened: “I will bury you here.” He denied all the charges and said the event never happened in that manner – and that he was the one who was actually attacked … the police did not properly document the physical injuries and presented no evidence on the matter.
IOF troops shell southern Gaza
KHAN YOUNIS (PIC) 31 Oct — Israeli occupation forces (IOF) shelled areas to the north east of Khan Younis, south of the Gaza Strip, on Wednesday morning, local sources said. They said that Israeli artillery fired two shells at a deserted land lot to the east of Qarara town, north of Khan Younis, with no casualties reported. The sources pointed out that the IOF troops also opened machinegun fire at Palestinian houses to the east of Rafah and Khan Younis.
Bahraini delegation to visit Gaza
EL-ARISH, Egypt (Ma‘an) 31 Oct — A Bahraini delegation is due to visit the Gaza Strip on Thursday, Egyptian security officials said. Egyptian authorities and security services are preparing for the visit. The delegation will arrive in Sinai’s el-Arish airport and enter Gaza via the Rafah crossing. Adnan Abu Hasna, an UNRWA spokesman, said that contrary to reports the son of Bahraini leader Hamad bin Isa bin Salman Al Khalifa was not among the visitors.
Israel reckons with unraveling Gaza policy
WaPo 30 Oct — JERUSALEM — When the emir of Qatar paid the first visit by a head of state to the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip last week, there were two different reactions from the Israeli Foreign Ministry. In one statement, Yigal Palmor, a spokesman for the ministry, accused the emir, Sheik Hamad Bin Khalifa al-Thani, of backing a terrorist organization and having “thrown peace under the bus.” But an Arabic-language spokesman for the ministry, Lior Ben Dor, told Radio Sawa, a U.S.- funded station heard across the Middle East, that Israel welcomed the visit of the emir, who pledged generous financial aid. “Since our withdrawal from Gaza, the goal has been that Arab states come and help the residents of Gaza,” Ben Dor said, referring to the Israeli pullout in 2005. The double message was a symptom of the unraveling of an Israeli policy toward Gaza that was put in place after Hamas, which is considered a terrorist organization by Israel and the United States, seized control of the territory in June 2007.
How to get from counting calories to adding jobs
Gaza Gateway 31 Oct – We and many others have publicized information and analysis over the last week about the Red Lines presentation revealed to Gisha after a 3.5-year Freedom of Information battle with the Ministry of Defense. Red lines understandably focused people’s attention on what was banned from entering Gaza as a result of Israel’s restrictions. This week, we want to draw your attention to what and who are being prevented from exiting Gaza under the current policy, in place since 2010.
Gaza lawmaker dies from medical complications
GAZA CITY (Ma‘an) 31 Oct — Hussam al-Tawil, a member of the Palestinian Legislative Council in the Gaza Strip, died Wednesday from medical complications, officials said. Al-Tawil passed away in Egypt after seeking medical treatment in the country. He was elected to the PLC in 2005 as an independent candidate, but with the support of Hamas. Al-Tawil was also the secretary-general of the council of Arab Orthodox Churches.
Political and other news
PA summons Palestinian columnist for interrogation
RAMALLAH (Ma‘an) 31 Oct — The Palestinian Authority on Wednesday summoned a Palestinian columnist to answer charges of libel and slander, a media rights group reported. Jihad Harb was summoned by the public prosecutor after a complaint was filed by the president’s office, said Mada, the Palestinian Center for Development and Media Freedoms. Harb is accused of a “direct insult to the employees in the Office of the President, through an article was written about two months ago,” Mada said in a statement.
PLO: “Heading to UN aims at ending the idleness of the peace process”
IMEMC/Agencies 31 Oct — The Executive Committee of the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) held a meeting led by President Mahmoud Abbas, and said that heading to the United Nations in November aims at boosting the chances for restarting the political process. The Committee discussed the arrangements for submitting the UN membership application, and the ongoing related talks with different countries, especially Arab states, to garner international support.
Palestinians deny putting conditions on new talks
RAMALLAH, Palestinian Territories (AFP) 31 Oct — The Palestinians said on Wednesday a settlement freeze was an Israeli obligation not a condition set by them after French President Francois Hollande called for a resumption of peace talks without preconditions … “We are not placing any conditions on the resumption of negotiations,” Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erakat told AFP. Israeli “Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and President Francois Hollande both know perfectly well that a settlement freeze is not a Palestinian condition but an Israeli commitment,” he added.
PLO leader calls for ‘return’ of W. Bank to Jordan
JPost 31 Oct — Farouk Kaddoumi, a veteran PLO official, dropped a political bombshell Wednesday with a call for “returning” the West Bank to Jordan. Kaddoumi, who is based in Tunisia, said he supported the idea of a federation or confederation between the West Bank and Jordan. His remarks, which came during an interview with the London-based Al- Quds Al-Arabi newspaper, are the first of their kind to be voiced by a senior PLO figure in decades.
PLO sources: Fayyad proposes new government
RAMALLAH (Ma‘an) 31 Oct — Prime Minister Salam Fayyad has presented a plan to the PLO leadership to form a more inclusive factional government, officials in Ramallah said Wednesday. Two PLO executive committee members, denying reports that Fayyad had offered his resignation, said he presented a political vision to encourage a more inclusive government. Ahmad Majdalani told Ma‘an that Fayyad suggested forming a government including officials from every faction so as to evenly distribute responsibility before President Mahmoud Abbas returns to the UN in November. Majdalani said the proposal was not met with applause during the most recent meeting.
Fuel, gas prices reduced in West Bank
RAMALLAH (Ma‘an) 31 Oct — Fuel and gas prices in the West Bank will be reduced from Thursday, the Palestinian Authority Finance Ministry said Wednesday. The ministry issued new, lower prices for petrol, kerosene and domestic-use gas in a statement … The price cuts follow similar measures introduced during October. Those reductions were part of a package to alleviate the economic crisis which had pushed Palestinians to the streets to protest the rising cost of living.
Syrian rebels arm Palestinians against Assad
BEIRUT (Reuters) 31 Oct — Syrian rebels said on Wednesday they had begun arming sympathetic Palestinians to fight a pro-Assad faction in a Palestinian enclave in Damascus – a move which could fuel spiraling intra-Palestinian violence. Two rebel commanders told Reuters they expected their Palestinian allies to fight the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine General Command (PFLP-GC) which dominates the Yarmouk enclave – a one-time refugee camp turned sprawl of apartment blocks which is run by the Palestinians themselves.
FIFA joins in Palestinian commemorations
fifa.com 31 Oct — Palestine has been ravaged by internal and external conflict throughout the 21st century. Yet, through FIFA’s aid, football has made significant progress there in recent years. This week, a FIFA delegation led by FIFA Executive committee member Lydia Nsekera was in Ramallah to celebrate the three-year anniversary of the first women’s international played on home soil. Palestine joined FIFA in 1998 but had been unable to play internationals within their borders until funding from world football’s governing body helped them build a stadium up to international standards in 2008
Deport the African refugees to Egypt? Not so fast
972mag 31 Oct — Refugees in Egypt face regular threat of arrest, torture, and deportation to their countries of origin. The revolution has not changed that reality. On the life of one Darfuri refugee in search of protection.
Israel to limit cluster bombs in possible war with Hezbollah
TEL AVIV (Reuters) 29 Oct - Israel would use a lot fewer cluster munitions in any future war with Hezbollah than it did in their 2006 conflict, even though it would go into southern Lebanon earlier and harder, a senior Israeli military officer said on Monday. The disclosure confirms Israel already has detailed planning for an offensive aiming to avoid some controversial tactics used in the 34-day push against the Iranian-backed guerrillas. Israel has not signed the Convention on Cluster Munitions, whose adoption in 2008 was spurred partly by Lebanese casualties of the bomblets, some of which lay scattered and unexploded until they were accidentally detonated by civilian passersby.
Guantánamo: 10 years of human wrongs
Amnesty International 1 Nov — Musa‘ab Omar Al Madhwani has spent almost a third of his life in US custody. Now 32-years-old, the Yemeni national has been held at the US detention in Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, for more than a decade. The story began on 11 September 2002, when he was arrested in an apartment in Karachi by the Pakistani security forces. He said he was tied up, blindfolded, beaten with a rifle and threatened with death. Around five days later he was handed over to US forces and flown to Afghanistan, where he spent about a month in a secret US-operated facility in or near Kabul … In late October 2002, Musa‘ab Omar Al Madhwani was sent to Guantánamo from the US air base at Bagram, where he had been subjected to more abuse and endured a further five days of illegal detention. It would be another two years before he would get access to a lawyer, and nearly six before the US Supreme Court was to rule that he and others held at Guantánamo had the right to challenge in court the lawfulness of their detention.Musa‘ab Al Madhwani’s habeas corpus petition was finally considered in 2010. More than 10 years after being taken into custody, he has not been charged with any crime by the USA, which claims the right to hold him indefinitely in the name of its “global war” against al-Qa‘ida and associated groups.
Is the Dead Sea dying? Water loss continues at record rate
Independent 28 Oct — The Dead Sea is shrinking at a record rate, prompting calls for Israel and Jordan to stop fertilizer makers from siphoning so much of the water whose restorative powers have attracted visitors since biblical times. The salty inland lake bordering the nations dropped a record 1.5 meters (4.9 feet) over the last 12 months because of industry use and evaporation, the Hydrological Service of Israel said. That’s the steepest Dead Sea decline since data-keeping started in the 1950s. Half the drop was caused by Israel Chemicals Ltd. and Jordan’s Arab Potash Co.,
Israeli Racism / Discrimination / Sectarianism
Study: Arab sector sees no point in voting
JPost 28 Oct — Arabs who stay home on election day will do so not out of ideological concerns but because they don’t think their vote counts.
Violence, racism on board school bus
Ynet 31 Oct — Father angered over his son’s suspension assaults school bus escort, calling her ‘stinking Ethiopian’
For first time, Israeli association allows basketball teams made up of migrants’ kids
Haaretz 30 Oct — Under the new rules, approved last week, Israel Basketball Association youth leagues won’t limit number of non-citizens as long as they’re under 18 and have completed at least two years in an Israeli school.
Jewish agency calls for rethink on ban on women praying at Western Wall
Haaretz 31 Oct — The Jewish Agency passed a resolution on Tuesday calling on Israel to revisit its position on women praying at the Western Wall but stopped short of demanding that it wrest control of the issue from the Orthodox establishment. The resolution did not make explicit mention of Women of the Wall, whose leader Anat Hoffman was arrested two weeks ago while conducting a service at the wall and who later reported being roughed up by police. Hoffman’s arrest sparked an outcry among members of the non-Orthodox Jewish world.
Soldier: Haredi man spat on me and my mother
Ynet 31 Oct — Female soldier says man spat on her and her mother while two were sitting inside their car in Jerusalem. Police scanning area
Number of ultra-Orthodox men exempted from IDF service reaches all-time high
Haaretz 31 Oct –IDF says it expects number of exemptions for ultra-Orthodox to continue rising, unless government decides to draft them; in 2011, a quarter of all draft-eligible Israeli males received exemptions from military service for various reasons.
Analysis / Opinion / Human interest
VIDEO: Normalize this! / Remi Kanazi
Remi Kanazi is a poet, writer, and activist based in New York City. He is the author of Poetic Injustice: Writings on Resistance and Palestine (RoR Publishing, 2011) and the editor of Poets For Palestine (Al Jisser Group, 2008).
Our greatest strength is when we come together
End the Occupation 31 Oct – The African Heritage Delegation to Palestine/Israel, organized by our member group Interfaith Peace-Builders, arrived in Jerusalem last week. Below are some early impressions from participants. Initial Welcome, Lasting Impressions by Dr. Gilo Kwesi Cornell Logan: My initial welcome to Israel was being detained and interrogated for nearly 3 hours at the airport; the psychological and spiritual harassment was interspersed with questioning and waiting, waiting and questioning; condescending tones non-rhythmically thrown at me that I was expected to dance to, private questions piercing the peace of my heart, as intimidation attempted to suppress something from deep within. But it is from this very same place within that this experience thus far has validated an essential part of my being as an African American; it has since shown me that it does not define the totality of the experience participating on this African Heritage Delegation to Israel…. The Struggle Continues for the Sacred Homelands of Palestine by Aaron Dixon: …Our delegation had an opportunity to meet with a Palestinian family and observe firsthand the struggle between them and racist Zionist Jewish settlers. Most striking was the Palestinian family’s determination and strength, which was embodied in their 90-year-old grandmother who had been beaten and hospitalized on five different occasions by Jewish settlers who currently occupy a section of their home and the violent Israeli Defense Forces (IDF).
Christian leaders cannot be cowed into silence over Israel’s abuses of human rights / Rabbi Brian Walt
Haaretz 31 Oct –Eric Yoffie’s criticism of the Protestant churches’ letter to Congress is misplaced: The price of ‘interfaith dialogue’ cannot be silenced by Christian leaders on Israel’s human rights violations, evidence of which I saw firsthand in a recent visit to the West Bank … Over the past two weeks, I had the privilege of leading an interfaith delegation including several leaders of the civil rights movement, younger civil and human rights leaders, Christian clergy, academics, and several Jews, on a two-week trip to the West Bank. We were all shocked by the widespread human rights violations that we saw with our own eyes and that we heard about from both Palestinians and Israelis. Several black members of our group, including those who participated actively in the civil rights movement, remarked that what they saw on the West Bank was “frighteningly familiar” to their own experience, a systemic pattern of discrimination that privileged one group (in this case, Jews) and denigrated another (Palestinians).
Palestinian businesswomen finding their own solutions
Daily Star 1 Nov — Abeer Abu Ghaith, a poised young woman overflowing with optimism, works tirelessly to help Palestinian women achieve their dreams and improve their lives. She is just one of many women who are finding creative ways to overcome the restrictions Palestinians face in finding work and starting a business. Abu Ghaith, herself Palestinian, knows first hand how hard it is for women to succeed in the job market. Even with a degree in computer systems engineering, she had difficulty breaking into the overwhelmingly male field, and therefore turned her attention to empowering women and youth through information and communications technology and social media.
When 972’s privileged journalism belittles the Palestinian struggle / Sami Kishawi
16 Minutes to Palestine 31 Oct — Effort can be appreciated. But when the effort is spent on lazy, privileged journalism that belittles a struggle and an entire population, that is when the effort needs to be stopped in its tracks and addressed. +972 Magazine co-founder and contributor Yuval Ben-Ami recently published a piece recounting an evening he spent watching over Gaza’s skies as Israel shelled the territory from above and as Palestinian fighters returned fire, arguably in response to the four Gazans that had been killed earlier in the day.
Palestinian theatre: Can it help foster peace?
Radio National 1 Nov — The ongoing search for peace in the Middle East has eluded the warring factions, but at a community level, other efforts are being made, especially in the arts. The links between social change and theatre is the focus of The Zarakat Conference on Theatre, Cultural Diversity and Inclusion at La Trobe University.
It’s easy to forget the past if you don’t bear the scars from it / Melkam Lidet
Miftah 31 Oct — It is so easy to forget and to live in oblivion in Israel. It’s easy not to know or care about the history of injustice from which the state of Israel was born while the-would- be Palestinian state is yet to come into being … What made me realize how everything in Israel is “built to forget” was a drive from Jerusalem to the south, to the Negev and Eilat. On the highway at the western exit of the city, just a few kilometers away from Jerusalem, you can see patches of trees in what would look like forest reserves. The sides of the road are also lined with rows of trees and green bushes. If you don’t know the history of injustice in this land, it’s easy to just drive by, impressed with the greenery in the rather dry “Middle East”. You might even give Israel a pat on the back to acknowledge a job well done. But the truth is that many of the nice neighborhoods standing today are built on the ruins of Palestinian cities and villages. The forests were planted on confiscated private Palestinian land and the trees by the road side are there to “to cover up the crimes” committed by the Palmach, Haganah and other Jewish forces in the wake of the Nakba in 1948.