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October 2013

Netanyahu’s sweet deal: 104 prisoners for thousands of settlements

Alex Kane on

The Israeli right is howling over the release of Palestinian prisoners. But the deal Israel struck earlier this year–releasing prisoners for settlements–is a net-positive from the right-wing’s view. Israel’s gestures to keep the Palestinian Authority at the negotiation table enable the ultra-right government to continue gobbling up the West Bank.

Facts on the Ground Peace Index: Volume III

Institute for Middle East Understanding on

Volume III of the Institute for Middle East Understanding’s “facts on the ground” index tracks new settlement announcements, home demolitions and provocative statements from Israeli officials while the peace process grinds on.

What Comes Next: The musings of a Two-Stater

Peter Weiss on

Horrified by the prospect of another 10, or 50, years of the status quo– with Israeli jails filled with Palestinians separated from their families, periodic intifadas and never ending humiliations at checkpoints and Israel becoming even more of an international outcast– the author, a longtime human rights lawyer, sees the establishment of two states with dignity for both sides as a necessary step toward a future that does not entail ethnic compartmentalization.

A lynching by another name would be a political murder

Philip Weiss on

St Anne’s Warehouse production of Julius Caesar highlights an iconic moment, senators dipping their hands in the dictator’s blood. It recalls the Palestinian actions in Ramallah 10 years ago, which Israel supporters call a lynching

In photos: Euphoria as Ramallah greets prisoners’ release

Allison Deger on

Allison Deger was in Ramallah earlier today as prisoners released to the West Bank by the Israeli government were greeted at the Palestinian Authority headquarters. The crowd represented a cross-section of Palestinian society, and amid the euphoria, family members held up photographs of others behind bars

What Comes Next: We need the courage to do away with existing institutions, policies, and paradigms

Dinna Omar on

Dinna Omar: “before approving a state – a nation-state – one must also build an internal structure, must create a state of being built on equal footing. This means we need to build institutions, implement policies, and disseminate work that reverses the roles of oppressed and oppressor, the roles of those who are chosen and privileged over those who are un-chosen, beneath, and subjugated.” This post is part of “What Comes Next?: A forum on the end of the two-state paradigm.”

‘I wanted to show Americans what they’re paying for’–Max Blumenthal on why he wrote ‘Goliath’

Alex Kane on

Max Blumenthal’s “Goliath” is the bluntest book you’ll read about the state of Israeli society, as it looks deep into the soul of an ethnocracy that dominates the lives of millions of Palestinians. Alex Kane recently sat down with Blumenthal for a conversation about his book to discuss the current state of Israeli society, his method of reporting and what readers will learn about Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as negotiations with Iran and the Palestinians continue.

26 Palestinian prisoners released as part of Israeli-Palestinian talks

Kate on

Prisoner release In pictures: Jubilant scenes as Israel releases 26 Palestinian prisoners The Telegraph 30 Oct — A group of 21 prisoners from the West Bank left Ofer prison, near Jerusalem, shortly after 1:00 am (2300 GMT) and the other five crossed moments later into the Gaza strip, correspondents at both sites said. The West […]

Israeli Consul General frets about ‘progressive elite’ delegitimizing the Jewish state at elite Manhattan event

Alex Kane on

The Israeli Consul General of New York had a stark message last week: Israel’s name is being tarnished in the media and its reputation is threatened by delegitimization. The diplomat, Ido Aharoni, made the comments to about 50 people who gathered at the CORE Club in Manhattan. Aharoni was joined by Israel Project CEO, and former AIPAC spokesperson, Josh Block who complained of “Arabists” at the State Department, and by ‘Slate’ writer Dahlia Lithwick who shared she’s “terrified to send my kids to college” due to anti-Israel sentiment.

Israeli gov’t upholds denying entry to American teacher in Ramallah

Philip Weiss on

In yesterday’s New York Times, Yousef Munayyer slammed the bills in Congress to grant Israeli citizens visa waivers when they visit the U.S., and Munayyer cited Israeli discrimination against Arab-Americans at its borders– specifically, the arbitrary refusal of Israeli authorities to allow Nour Joudah, above, a dedicated young American teacher, to return to her job at the Friends School in Ramallah. There is news in Joudah’s case: the Israeli Ministry of Interior responded last week to a written “hearing” it agreed to provide her following her appeal of the denial of entry. And the Ministry upheld the denial decision, without addressing any of the lengthy legal and factual claims raised by Joudah, her lawyer reports.

‘Variety’ misses the story on BDS

Shireen Tawil on

Variety magazine chose to do a piece on the BDS movement’s appeals to musicians not to perform in Israel. As a BDS supporter, I was initially excited that such a prominent, mainstream entertainment magazine would write about the movement, as it might raise the movement’s profile among readers unfamiliar with the political implications of performances in Israel. However, I was quickly disappointed when the scant research put into this article and its disparaging tone became apparent.

Why does Uri Avnery know so little about Palestinian citizens of Israel?

Jonathan Cook on

Uri Avnery has achieved many great things as a journalist and a peace activist. Nonetheless, it is important to challenge the many fallacious claims Avnery makes to bolster the arguments in his latest article, dismissing the growing comparisons being made between Israel and apartheid South Africa.

My first post-Snowden moment

Katie Miranda on

Katie Miranda shares her first “post-Snowden” moment where she hesitates to share a personal story over Skype, not totally sure who else might be listening.

What Comes Next: We must enter a new Israeli discourse based in equality, justice and freedom

Avraham Burg on

Former Speaker of the Israeli Knesset Avraham Burg writes, “So enough of the illusions. There are no longer two states between the Jordan River and the sea. We must consider how we can enter into the new Israeli discourse. It has intriguing potential. The next diplomatic formula that will replace the “two states for two peoples” will be a civilian formula.” This post is part of “What Comes Next?: A forum on the end of the two-state paradigm.”