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What Max Blumenthal saw in Gaza

Philip Weiss on

People in the US struggle to see Gaza as anything but a war zone filled with victims, Max Blumenthal says. When they’re actually people a lot like us. Three stories from his recent trip convey the sorrow, pity and despair

Israel carries out extrajudicial killing of two Palestinians suspects in kidnapping Israeli youths

Allison Deger on
Palestinian civil defense members, near a burning shop, pick up a dead body during an Israeli security services operation in the southern West Bank city of Hebron on September 23, 2014 (Photo: Hazem Bader/AFP)

Overnight Tuesday Israeli special forces killed two Palestinian men who were suspected of kidnapping and slaying three Israeli youths abducted in June while hitchhiking in the Gush Etzion settlement bloc of the West Bank. Amer Abu Aisha, 32, and Marwan Qawasmeh, 29, had evaded Israeli forces for over 100 days hiding out in their home city of Hebron no more than five miles from the site of where the remains of Eyal Yifrah, 19, Gilad Shaar, 16, and Naftali Fraenkel, 16, were discovered over the summer

Israeli refuseniks expose Occupation’s dark underbelly

Jonathan Cook on
Soldiers of Unit 8200. (Photo: Moti Milrod/Haaretz)

A letter signed by 43 veterans of an elite Israeli military intelligence unit declaring their refusal to continue serving the occupation has sent shockwaves through Israeli society. But not in the way the soldiers may have hoped

Palestinian babies not included on Israel gov’t list of most popular names

Ira Glunts on
Palestinian children at a school near Haifa.

On Sunday, the Israeli Population and Immigration Authority declared that during the past year the most popular male names given children were Yosef, followed by Daniel and Ori. The top female names were Tamar, Noa and Shira. This was reported in the English edition of the Ha’aretz news website. What neither the English article nor the government announcement mentioned was that Arabic names were excluded from the survey

Will the WCC finally break the interfaith ecumenical deal?

Marc H. Ellis on

It is the time to end the “ecumenical deal” that creates a Christian code of silence on Palestine. It’s time for a new and officially recognized dialogue/solidarity between Jews of Conscience and Christians, to answer the World Council of Churches’ call for a just peace in the conflict

Israeli navy shoots 70-year-old Palestinian fisherman on beach

Kate on

Gaza Israeli forces shoot, injure Gaza fisherman [on shore!] GAZA CITY (Ma‘an) 18 Sept — Israeli naval forces opened fire off the coast of northern Gaza late Wednesday, injuring a Palestinian fisherman on a beach, locals said. Yousef Zayif, 70, was hit by live fire while waiting for his sons on the shore near al-Sudaniya.

Hamas is just as bad as ISIS and worse than Boko Haram — Israeli government propaganda

Allison Deger on
"Hamas is ISIS" meme tweeted by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

At the height of the Gaza onslaught in July, Netanyahu’s right-hand man met with a group of journalists in Jerusalem to equate Hamas with ISIS. The latest Israeli rhetoric is overheated: Both organizations seek to establish an Islamic caliphate, both “educate (read: brainwash) children to sanctify death and to die as a martyr (shahid) in jihad.” Oh and Hamas is global, but Boko Haram isn’t

Israeli Supreme Court upholds law allowing housing discrimination against Palestinians

Annie Robbins on
Supreme Court of Israel, Jerusalem. (Photo: Wikimedia)

Yesterday, Israel’s Supreme Court dismissed a petition by Adalah: The Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel effectually facilitating the Judaization of more Palestinian owned land inside Israel. According to Adalah, the court’s decision holding up Israel’s Admissions Committees Law, “entrenches racial segregation; 434 small communities in Israel, or 43% of all residential areas, will be allowed to close their doors to Palestinian Arab citizens of the state.” Much of the land in question was originally confiscated from Palestinian refugees, and the court’s decision will result in the continued concentration and containment of the Palestinian population in Isra

‘This is our land!': West Bank village Wadi Fukin fights largest Israeli land grab in decades

Kelly Lynn on
A boy wraps a keffiyeh around his face following the protest on September 12th in front of the Israeli settlement of Beitar Illit. (Photo: Kelly Lynn)

Wadi Fukin may be the smallest of the five villages threatened by Israel’s recent mass land grab, but these days it’s certainly not the quietest. Leaders in the village of approximately 1,250 have galvanized locals into organizing Friday demonstrations against Israeli occupation for the first time in years, after 4,000 dunams (nearly 1,000 acres) in the southern West Bank was declared “state land,” by Israel. Over a quarter of the confiscated land belongs to Wadi Fukin, which already lost most of its property to the still expanding Israeli settlements of Beitar Illit and Hadar Beitar in the north and Tsur Hadassah in the west after

Malta sinking killed hundreds fleeing Gaza

Marc H. Ellis on

What are the costs of the inhumane Israeli blockade? A reported 250-300 Gazans fleeing to Europe from the open-air prison that is Gaza were killed in the Malta boat sinking last week

Deir al Balah Rehabilitation Center cares for Gaza’s disabled in the wake of ‘Operation Protective Edge’

Dan Cohen on
Usama Abu Safer helps assemble Mohammed Abu Maghseeb's wheelchair. (Photo: Dan Cohen)

Dan Cohen talks with Usama Abu Safer from Gaza’s Deir al Balah Rehabilitation Center. They met during the final days of Operation Protective Edge, Israel’s 51-day assault that killed 2,168 Palestinians and injured nearly 11,000. Frequent Israeli violence has raised the rate of disability among more than 1.8 million Palestinians living in Gaza to an astonishing 7.5%. According to the Deir al Balah Rehabilitation Center, 3,000 of the injured in Operation Protective Edge now have permanent physical disabilities, most of which are paraplegia and amputations. Many more suffered permanent hearing loss resulting from explosions

US and Canada strengthen economic relationship with Israel following attack on Gaza

Allison Deger on
Yair Lapid at his party's headquarters in Tel Aviv. (Photo: Edi Israel/Israel Sun)

Since Operation Protective Edge began in Gaza in early July, Israel has strengthened economic relationships with its closest allies. Within days of the air campaign starting, the U.S. and Israel penned a mutual recognition customs agreement which will lift screening barriers and tariffs. Then on Monday Israel cinched a similar Declaration of Intent from Canada, while focusing on the threat of ISIS, Hamas and Hezbolla

Achieving a hudna and ten years of calm in Israel/Palestine

Stanley Cohen on
A Palestinian waves a Hamas flag (R) as others celebrate following a ceasefire in Gaza City August 26, 2014 (Reuters / Suhaib Salem)

Israel should accept a long-term hudna, or cease-fire, if the resistance groups offer it—ten years of a “time out” might permit the breathing room needed for a new generation of Israelis to push aside her obdurate, reactionary leadership, clear the ideological dead-wood, and let light in on a dark land; while likewise permitting a new generation of Palestinian leaders to determine perhaps not what it wants, but what it needs. Should Israel end the blockade, commit to self-determination for the Palestinians, and non-interference in their affairs, a decade without violence could be secured for both sides

Gaza ceasefire proving once again to be part of the ‘occupation game’

Pam Bailey on
Palestinians sit in a tent outside their apartments, which witnesses said were destroyed in an Israeli offensive, during a 72-hour truce in Beit Lahiya town in the northern Gaza Strip August 11, 2014. (Photo: REUTERS/Suhaib Salem)

This lukewarm truce in Gaza is part of a long, boringly consistent pattern. A 2009 study that tracked patterns of violence between Israelis and Palestinians in Gaza over the course of eight years revealed that unlike what Western mainstream media coverage of the conflict suggests, Israel violates the vast majority of ceasefires first.

Life after a massacre: The story of Ahmed and Mahmoud

Sarah Salibi on
Ahmed Abu Shanab sitting in Al-Quds hospital.

Sarah Salibi talks with two young men in Gaza dealing with the post-traumatic stress of life after ‘Operation Protective Edge’. Ahmed abu Shanab, 17 years old, and Mahmoud Naser, 18, recall the day they were injured. After few days of the Shijaia massacre, the Israeli warplanes and the artillery tanks shelled Al-Shijaia market with several missiles during a ceasefire. The bombing left 17 deaths and 200 injuries. Ahmed and Mahmoud, who after the strike became close friends, were among the injured and are now at Al-Quds hospital receiving treatment

Moe Diab debates SWU operative Philippe Assouline

Annie Robbins on
OnPoint with Tomi Lahren (photo: Screen shot)

One American News network’s On Point show with Tomi Lahren is determined to educate Americans about the Israel/Palestine conflict from a fresh perspective. A fiery debate between Moe Diab and Philippe Assouline showed the smashmouth tactics of the pro-Israel side with Assouline’s misrepresentations

Photo-cartoon making Tutu into Hitler is published then taken down by South African Jewish paper

Philip Weiss on

A cartoon making Desmond Tutu into Hitler has been taken down by the South African Jewish Report newspaper, as has been a piece saying, “Just as it was more important for Hitler to kill Jews than to protect the fatherland in the last days of the war so it is more important for Tutu to kill Jews rather to protect his fellow Christians.” Tutu’s crime? Supporting

Reborn from the womb of my destroyed house

Dr. Hassan El-Nabih on
The El-Nabih house after it was destroyed with Dr. Hassan El-Nabih inside.

Dr. Hassan El-Nabih shares a harrowing account of being in his Gaza home when Israel destroyed it on August 23, 2014. He writes, “On that day, I horribly experienced death when an Israeli military aircraft destroyed my house. Fortunately, a miracle happened and I was born again from the rubble of my house.”