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Author Archives: Allison Deger
Allison Deger talks with youth activists in Ramallah who took to the streets in the past to protest Palestinian negotiations with Israel, but now are sitting it out as they do not believe their representatives will listen to their grievances. Bassel from al-Walaja says, “We are not objecting to just the negotiations and their failures and their success. We’re against the whole thing: recognizing Israel, the two-state solution. We’re against all of it in principle.” Above, Palestinian security forces beat youth protesters with batons at a demonstration in 2013.
Mariam Barghouti, a 20 year-old university student and translator was arrested last Friday in Nabi Saleh and six days later is still locked in an Israeli jail cell. Despite being an American citizen she is facing trumped up charges of stone throwing that can carry a three-month sentence in jail.
What will remain, said George, sitting in the Ramallah Cafe, is “one apartheid state: one state for two peoples where one has all of the rights, the Israelis, and one has none of the rights, the Palestinians.” As negotiations between Israeli and Palestinians leaders reach a crisis, in Ramallah, the urban reprieve and seat of President Mahmoud Abbas’s government, the breakdown passes with much apathy.
African asylum seeker protest leader Mutasim Ali has filed a petition with Israel’s high court to overturn his, and thousands of other prison summons for refugees desiring status in Israel. Ali has been given 30 days to report to a detention facility
The Israeli Government Advertising Agency, known for promoting tourism, is paying a journalist $61,800 to cover Pope Francis’s upcoming visit.
A group of Israeli high school boys dressed as members of the Klu Klux Klan and others in “black face” make-up to stage a mock lynching for a class holiday party.
SodaStream starlet Scarlett Johansson parrots company’s CEO in accusing Oxfam of funding the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement.
Fruits of a right-wing takeover: Knesset barrage limits Arab parties, conscripts the ultra-Orthodox, and puts the peace process to a vote
This week legislation introduced by right-wing members of Knesset passed in quick succession, nearly unanimously with the exception of lawmakers who boycotted the debates. Within two days the government approved military conscription for ultra-Orthodox, raised the electoral threshold which will keep Arab parties out of office, and amended Basic Law for the first time in 22 years to require a referendum on ceding any Israeli controlled land during negotiations.
Tuesday marked a day of funerals as Palestinians across the West Bank and Gaza mourned six killed by Israeli forces within twenty-four hours. Three were killed in the West Bank in separate instances and three were killed in the Gaza Strip from an air strike. Above, the funeral of Saji Darwish, 18, in Beitin, a village in the West Bank.
Last Sunday over 300,000 protesters shut down central Jerusalem to protest a Knesset bill to draft Israel’s ultra-Orthodox Jewish community into the military. Allison Deger talks to some of the protesters who compare Israeli Finance Minister Yair Lapid, the main backer of the compulsorily conscription legislation, to the assassinated Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, suggesting he would meet a similar fate.
The killing of three Palestinian men in Qalandia refugee camp last August is a central case in the Amnesty International report on Israeli soldiers killing dozens of Palestinian protesters in the last three years. Amnesty has called for governments to suspend military aid to Israel because of the pattern. Allison Deger investigated that violent night in the occupation. Here is her assessment of Israeli actions.
Palestinians in Hebron demand Israel ‘Open Shuhada Street’ and protest twentieth anniversary of Ibrahimi mosque massacre
On Friday around one thousand Palestinian and Israeli activists protested in the West Bank city of Hebron to reopen Shuhada Street.
In Israel torturing Palestinian prisoners is illegal, but since 2001 there has not been a single conviction—even when the state admits its use. Above, the shabach position is demonstrated: A prisoner is bound to a low tilted chair with one hand tied behind him. The suspect’s head is covered by an opaque sack. Loud music is played in the room.
While officials in the U.S. are undertaking efforts to punish those who call for boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS), inside Israel more members of government are backing settlement boycotts.
What is a Jewish dog? Allison Deger visits a pet cemetery (above) and ranch run by an Israeli couple that enjoys water, electricity and waste removal as a result of government plans to make life attractive for Israeli Jews in the Negev desert. Yet about two kilometers away is an unrecognized Bedouin encampment with 24 residents from the Abu Alkin clan who are not allowed to access municipal services, and are forced to live off the grid. “Martin Luther King, 2014: My dream is to be a dead Jewish dog. For then I will have equal rights,” quips Khalil Alamour of the legal rights group Adalah.
Do these teens remind you of the dizzy teens awaiting the Beatles? Change the scene: Days before John Kerry will arrive in the Middle East for more negotiations, thousands of Israelis marched in the occupied Jerusalem hills to claim land that would be essential to a two-state solution
After leaving Oxfam, Scarlett Johansson has gained the support of Israeli foreign minister Avigdor Lieberman.
Last week, noted African asylum seeker organizer Mutasim Ali, 27, was given a summons to report to prison. Since mid-December testimonies have surfaced that African asylum seekers are being summoned to report to a desert detention facility, and now this leader has been ordered to give up his life in Tel Aviv and turn himself in. Mondoweiss publishes copy of a new prison summons used to order African asylum seekers to report to a desert detention facility.
A week ago the world rejoiced when food trucks finally arrived to Yarmouk refugee camp in Syria to alleviate mass starvation, but since then the siege is back. Even after the food arrived, it did little to curtail starvation throughout the camp of 40,000. The death toll now has exceeded 63,
Israeli-American Orit Arfa has followed up her Miley Cyrus pro-settler parody “Jews Can’t Stop” with “Gaza Wrecking Ball.”
The late Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon was eulogized in a service at the Knesset in Jerusalem earlier today and the turnout was low. There was no scramble for foreign dignitaries to board planes like they did for Nelson Mandela weeks ago. Even the Israeli public, who came out by the hundreds of thousands last October for the passing of chief Sephardic rabbi Ovadia Yosef, mostly stayed away. Above, the coffin of Ariel Sharon leaving the Knesset.
What is “hot return”? Israel’s policy of “voluntary deportation” in which some Africans are given $3,000 and taken to their embassies for early morning rush passports then driven directly to Ben Gurion airport. Tens of thousands of African asylum seekers protested this and related policies in front of the Israeli Knesset yesterday, demanding to meet with authorities.
During a third day of strikes African asylum seekers in Israel have announced plans to march from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem to demand refugee status. Over 20,000 have already demonstrated in front of foreign embassies, and United Nations and European Commission offices.
Today, tens of thousands of African asylum seekers gathered in Tel Aviv to protest in front of eight embassies, UN and EU offices as part of a three-day strike against Israel’s policy of imprisoning for those requesting refugee status. The protests brought out record numbers and caused the U.S. Embassy to shut down. Israeli onlookers jeered at the marches, shouting “Go home!” and “back to Africa!” as the protesters met for a second day of actions.