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Egypt’s destruction of Gaza tunnels leading to economic and environmental disaster

Isra Saleh El-Namy on
A worker inside a Gaza tunnel which was partially destroyed by Egypt. (Photo: Isra Saleh El-Namy)

The Egyptian government has destroyed 80% of the tunnels bringing goods into Gaza which has led to an environmental and economic disaster. “They are waging a tireless war on our livelihoods. I wonder what harms them when the Palestinian citizen in Gaza is able to feed his family by what he earns in meager wages from the tunnels work?” asks 24-year-old Adham Okbi.

Israeli army makes post in Hebron activist house

Allison Deger on
Israeli soldiers inside of the Hebron-based Youth Against Settlements office/living quarters, Saturday November 7, 2015. (Photo: Youth Against Settlements)

“I won’t take compensation from occupation,” Issa Amro says of destruction to his property in Hebron by Israeli soldiers. Early Saturday morning Amro, 35, awoke to dozens of Israeli soldiers entering the Youth Against Settlements house and presenting him with a military order to seize control of the house for 24-hours. Amro, along with an Italian journalist on assignment with an Israeli paper, and two international activists who were staying at the Youth Against Settlements advocacy center were then ushered into a single bedroom where, with the exception of escorted bathroom breaks, they were forced to stay until after daybreak Sunday.

‘Netanyahu destroyed hope’ — Erekat

Dorgham Abusalim on
Chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat. (Photo: AFP)

BBC’s Stephen Sackur, host of HardTalk, interviewed Saeb Erekat, PLO Secretary General and veteran chief negotiator on November 4. The 24 minute-long interview gives a rare glimpse into the gravity of the situation in Israel and Palestine. Erekat begins with noting the role of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in fueling Palestinian desperation and violence: […]

Israeli forces kill Palestinian husband and wife — 27 years apart

Kate on
Palestinian protest, undated photo

Israeli forces shot and killed an elderly Palestinian woman, Tharwat al-Sharawi, 72, after an alleged vehicle attack in Halhul, north of Hebron on Friday. Israel killed her husband Fouad in during first Intifadah in 1988; he was a teacher who succumbed to teargas

‘We have martyrs every day in Hebron’

Matthew Vickery on
Issa Amro

Hebron is an epicenter of resistance: Around a third of the 70 Palestinian deaths in October came from Hebron and the surrounding area. The city itself, which has always had a heavy Israeli army presence, is now seeing increased soldier numbers.

Life in Israel during the ‘wave of terror’

Ronit Dison on
Israelis shoot in a gun shooting range on October 15, 2015 in Jerusalem. (Photo: Ilia Yefimovich/Getty Images)

Ronit Dison, a social worker in Tel Aviv, writes, “Since the beginning of this chapter of extreme violence that started at the end of September, I have felt scared every day. Not only for myself, but also for my loved ones. More than anyone, my concern is for my boyfriend who is a Palestinian with Israeli citizenship. Every time he goes to work I am worried he will be stopped by police and questioned due to his “Semitic” features, attacked by someone who thinks he’s a Jew, attacked by someone who thinks he’s a Palestinian, or even lynched by a hate-filled crowd. In the reality that is November 2015, the possibilities are endless.”

The Case for Parallel States: Excerpt from ‘One Land, Two States: Israel and Palestine as Parallel States’

Mark LeVine and Mathias Mossberg on
A demonstrator waves a Palestinian flag as he looks over the wall during the weekly protest against the wall and the occupation in the West Bank village of Bil’in, January 4, 2012. (Photo: Hamde Abu Rahma/

Read an excerpt from the book “One Land, Two States: Israel and Palestine as Parallel States” which details the findings of a half decade’s worth of joint research, discussions and debates in the areas of security, economics, diplomacy, international law, legal regimes and harmonization, and the role of religious and of culture more broadly in creating a new architecture for shared sovereignty yet politically independent life for both peoples on the same land.

‘Can we not sacrifice ourselves?’: Thoughts from the intifada

Wa'd Manaf Abbas on
(Photo: Anne Paq)

Wa’d Manaf Abbas writes from Ramallah about the ongoing intifada, inspired by this Salvador Allende quote, “The people must defend themselves, but they must not sacrifice themselves. The people must not let themselves be destroyed or riddled with bullets, but they cannot be humiliated either.”

Permanently ghettoizing the Palestinian people is Yitzhak Rabin’s true legacy

Marc H. Ellis on
Yitzhak Rabin

On the 20th anniversary of the assassination of Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, Isabel Kershner of the New York Times writes that Israelis on both sides of the political spectrum have reached a “pragmatic” consensus on the way forward. If alive today it’s likely Rabin would fit nicely into the “pragmatic” Israeli consensus as he did during his lifetime. Rabin’s pragmatism was the pragmatism of the powerful. The life of Yitzhak Rabin is part of the downward spiral where Jews come to accept the denigration and oppression of another people as “pragmatic.” For in the end, permanently ghettoizing the Palestinian people is the true legacy of Yitzhak Rabin.

Gaza shares ‘ideas worth spreading’ at TEDx Shujaiya

Isra Saleh El-Namy on
TEDx Shujaiya

Isra Saleh El-Namy reports from TEDx Shujaiya, a recent event in Gaza organized independently as part of the popular TED conference series. Organizer Heba Madi says, “It is really a golden opportunity, and a great honor to have this prestigious and international program in a Palestinian flavor. We wanted to prove to the whole world that people in Gaza deserve to live in dignity.”

Telling tales in Israel and Palestine

Juliana Farha on
Border police execute teenage girl in Hebron. October 25, 2015

Juliana Farha writes: “Over the past month the Israel-Palestine narrative has become a perverse echo chamber in which the means, intention and capacity that define a target’s ‘legitimacy’ are continously reformulated to post-rationalise the same grisly outcome. Oftentimes, the ‘means’ only appear after the guns have stopped: as my children would say, the knives are ‘magicked’ into the scene. Intention and capacity are givens, woven into the very fact of being Palestinian. So it was with Dania Arsheid, Fadi Alloun, Saad Muhammad Youssef al-Atrash, and many others, prompting Amnesty International to demand this week that Israel cease its ‘unlawful killings.’”

The ‘non-lethal’ chemical weapon killing Palestinians

Sheren Khalel on
A protester launches a tear gas cansiter back at Israeli forces. The practice is difficult and dangerous. Once the canister is launched it is likely that the protester will have to recover for sometime from sticking around while the gas takes affect. (Photo: Abed al Qaisi)

On Thursday evening Israeli forces stormed Aida refugee camp in the southern occupied West Bank city of Bethlehem. Jeeps descended on the camp from all entrances shooting off tear gas rounds indiscriminately as families rushed to close their windows, shoving cloth in any crevice that could allow the noxious gas to seep in, a well practiced drill in homes across the occupied West Bank. Tear gas is forbidden to be used during warfare under the Chemical Weapons Convention, but regardless of its supposed illegality and unknown side effects, one would be hard pressed to find a household in the occupied Palestinian Territory that does not know how to combat symptoms of the gas due to its frequent and heavy use by Israeli forces on Palestinians.

PLO report: Israel killed 73 Palestinians in October

Allison Deger on
Palestinians mourn over the body of 23-years-old Muhammad Shemasina, killed by Israeli soldiers on October, during his funeral ceremony in Jerusalem, on November 02, 2015. (Photo: Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)

During the month of October Israeli forces killed 73 Palestinians, and Palestinians killed 11 Israelis in more than 30 attacks amid increased violence dubbed the “knife Intifada” or “third Intifada” by Palestinian media. The month of October also saw the highest number of settler attacks on Palestinians in years. In total there were 287 incidents which included settlers running over Palestinians in hit and runs, torching agricultural fields, stoning Palestinian houses and, attacking the convoy of Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah.

Red Crescent: Israeli forces shot and wounded at least 2,617 Palestinians in October

Kate on
Israeli soldiers stand guard in front of Palestinian stone throwers during clashes in the West Bank town of Bethlehem on October 5, 2015 after Israel's army shot dead a 13-year-old Palestinian. (Photo: THOMAS COEX/AFP/Getty Images)

A Red Crescent spokesperson told Ma‘an News that at least 760 Palestinians were shot with live rounds across the occupied Palestinian territory, while another 1,857 were hit with rubber-coated steel bullets. He said that a further 5,399 Palestinians were treated for excessive tear gas inhalation during the period, while another 246 were injured in other ways, including assault by Israeli soldiers and burns from tear gas canisters. The spokesperson said that it brought the total injured during October to 8,262 Palestinians.

Majority of Palestinian citizens of Israel blame gov’t for violence, fear revenge attacks, limit their movements

Allison Deger on
Palestinian citizens of Israel protest outside of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's office in Jerusalem, 2013. (Photo:  Kobi Gideon/Flash90)

After violence took hold of Jerusalem at the beginning of October, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu charged the fault fell on Palestinian Authority, Hamas and the Islamic movement of northern Israel for inciting attacks against Israelis, and spurring demonstrations across the West Bank, Jerusalem and Gaza that have led to the killings of Palestinian protesters. Yet the 20-percent Arab-Palestinian minority in Israel believe that it is the Israeli government, and not the Palestinian leadership that is responsible for the outbreak of hostilities, according to a survey published by the Haifa-based think tank Mada al-Carmel.

In memoriam of Hashem al-‘Azza

Alice Rothchild on
Hashem al-'Azza, who was killed by tear gas on Oct. 29, 2015 near his Hebron home

When Alice Rothchild met Hashem al-‘Azza five years ago, he was living in hell, holding out in his Hebron home against settler atrocities. Last week he was killed by Israeli tear gas.

Fear and loathing in Jerusalem

Waleed Othman on
A crowd forms after the stabbing of an Israeli soldier in Jerusalem. (Photo: Waleed Othman)

Waleed Othman recently returned from a vacation in Israel/Palestine where he had hoped to reconnect with his roots, visit some historical sites, and sit on the beach. But instead he had two experiences that exemplify the marginalization of Palestinians from Israeli society, and indicate the breaking point many Palestinians are reaching.