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January 2017

A woman’s right to choose (her government)

Aniqa Raihan on

Choice is arguably the most important component of modern feminism. Feminism dictates that women deserve the ability to make their own choices about their careers, their bodies, and their politics. For decades, the Israeli government has denied Palestinian women (and men) the ability to make their own choices about their government, their economy, and their families. Aniqa Raihan writes, “The importance of choice is exactly why Palestinian justice is a feminist issue.”

Muslims in the US brace for Trump immigration ban

Roqayah Chamseddine on

Along with initiating the process to further militarize the US-Mexico border, Donald Trump will reportedly be signing an executive order to restrict immigration from Muslim-majority countries that are considered to be a ‘national security threat’—these include Syria, Iraq, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen. Hisham, a permanent US resident originally from Iraq, has been watching the news almost non-stop for any updates on Trump’s immigration policy. He says as his voice shakes, “I don’t know what I’m going to do. My fiance and her mother are going to be stuck [in Najaf] and I can’t explain to them why. How can I tell them that [Trump] is targeting Iraq because of “national security”? What has Iraq done? I’m confused and hurt. Refugees running from hell shouldn’t have to worry about another hell trying to get to a place of safety.”

MIT President meets with rightwing pro-settlement Israeli leader

Philip Weiss on

MIT President Rafael Reif meets with rightwing pro-settlements Israeli leader Naftali Bennett even as Bennett seeks annexation of West Bank colonies and UN Security Council condemns settlements as flagrant violation of int’l law

Maryland legislature, which supported boycotts of grapes and South Africa, targets BDS

Montgomery County Civil Rights Coalition and Bill of Rights Defense Committee/Defending Dissent Foundation on

“I want to ensure this ridiculous messenger movement against Israel never sees the light of day in our state,” MD State Senator Bobby Zirkin says in sponsoring a bill against BDS, boycott, divestment and sanctions. His statement is a frank rejection of free speech.

Please keep your American flags off my hijab

Hoda Katebi on

Hoda Katebi responds to one of the enduring images from the Women’s March on Washington, “From all the photos these past few days filling our social media feeds of white people with red hats and white women with pink beanies with ears, people holding signs of cheetos, and enough pro-Hillary slogans to make this Muslim woman of color uncomfortable, there was one particularly striking image that was consistently shared and re-shared and praised by the ‘left.’ The American-flag-clad Hijabi woman illustrated in the trademark style of of Obama’s ‘hope’ poster is not short of striking. But maybe not for the right reasons.”

Umm al-Hiran and activism in the post-truth era

Maya Avis on

“I understood, firsthand, what it means to hold the monopoly of violence,” Maya Avis says of the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians living in umm al-Hiran village in the Negev last week. What does it say when the only witnesses who count are Ashkenazi Jews?

By their bulldozers you will know them

Hatim Kanaaneh on

Israel’s recent wave of house demolitions in Qalansawe and al-Araqeeb is just the latest in a long tradition of limiting Palestinian community growth so that Palestinians will leave and thereby allow more Jews to live on more of the land.

Palestinians react to the Trump inauguration

Sheren Khalel on

As Americans gather across the country in a mixture of celebration and protest following the inauguration of U.S. President Donald Trump, Palestinians in the occupied territory are expressing their own concerns of what a Trump presidency will mean for them.

Britain wants to be Israel’s mother, again

Jonathan Ofir on

Historian Avi Shlaim reveals a shift in his thinking on Israel and Palestine: Zionism was a colonial project well before 1967. And the US and Britain have traded roles as mother country.

I have been looking for a home since I came to this world

Tamam Abusalama on

Tamam Abusalama writes, “I have been looking for a home since I came to this world for almost 23 years. I know that this is the destiny of each Palestinian. To be honest, returning back to our origin village is a dream that we, Palestinians, are going to keep fighting for. Knowing what “home” feels like is also a dream.”