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Palestinians remember Peres as ‘mastermind of occupation’ and tweet Abbas-Netanyahu handshake as betrayal

Allison Deger on
Former U.S President Bill Clinton touches the coffin of Shimon Peres during the funeral of the former Israeli leader at Mount Herzl Cemetery on September 30, 2016 in Jerusalem, Israel.  World leaders and dignitaries from 70 countries attended the state funeral of Israel's ninth president, Shimon Peres, in Jerusalem on Friday, after thousands of Israelis paid their last respects to the elder statesman who died on Wednesday.  (Photo: Amos Ben Gershom/GPO/Getty Images)

More than 80 world leaders attended Shimon Peres’ funeral today in Jerusalem with addresses from both President Barack Obama and Bill Clinton, both of whom spoke of the late president and prime minister’s work to achieve a lasting agreement with the Palestinians. Though hailed as Israel’s ambassador of peace, absent were Palestinian leaders in Israel’s government, detractors who remembered the statesman as the architect who “masterminded the occupation and settlement-building,” in the West Bank and Gaza.

Palestinian citizens of Israel decry political suppression as police arrest Balad Party officials

Skylar Lindsay on
An election billboard for the political party Balad.

Over 30 activists and senior officials from the Arab National Democratic Assembly, or Balad party, have been arrested in recent weeks on charges ranging from money laundering to mishandling campaign contributions, in what many in the Palestinian community are calling a new wave of political persecution. “The arrests are being used to scare Palestinians by using false information,” said Balad Knesset Member Jamal Zahalka. “They are a means to stop Palestinians wanting to change their situation.”

Shimon Peres and the nuclear world

Ted Snider on
Shimon Peres.

Shimon Peres was central to the creation of Israel’s nuclear weapon program, the development of the Apartheid regime’s nuclear weapon program in South Africa and was responsible for recasting Iran as a nuclear bogeyman and archenemy of the Western world. None of these three key moments will be mentioned as the press remembers Shimon Peres, but they all played important roles in the story of the nuclear threat faced by the world.

‘Night Raid’ exhibit coming to DC shares striking images of life under occupation

Jennifer Bing on
“Night Raid” photography exhibit opening at Gallery Al-Quds in Washington, DC on September 30.

Israeli arrest raids into towns and villages across the West Bank, army interrogations without parental or legal counsel, and sentencing in military courts are the reality of many Palestinian children, some as young as 12 years old. This experience is highlighted in the photography exhibit “Night Raid,” opening at Gallery Al-Quds in Washington, DC on September 30. Photojournalist Richard Cahan knocked on doors in the occupied West Bank late at night and asked residents to stand for pictures in their doorways. The results are a striking image of life under occupation.

Shimon Peres, Israel’s greatest ambassador, will be remembered for enabling oppression of the Palestinians

Marc H. Ellis on
(Image: Carlos Latuff)

As a military and political person, Shimon Peres did it all from the beginning of the state of Israel. Peres fought for the new born state of Israel, held many and varied political offices during the course of Israel’s history, including Prime Minister and President, played a key role in Israel’s development of nuclear weapons and encouraged and augmented Israel’s settlement project in Jerusalem and the West Bank. As important was Peres’s role in portraying Israel as a Jewish and democratic state around the world. From the beginning, Palestinians knew a different Israel and, with time, more and more Jews do, too. Though Peres will be widely celebrated in the upper echelons of American and European power in the coming days, Peres will be remembered for enabling a narrative of Jewish innocence and redemption that was, also, something much more sinister from the beginning.

Shimon Peres, dead at 93

Mondoweiss Editors on
Shimon Peres

Shimon Peres, a three-time prime minister and former president from Israel’s generation of founders has died at the age of 93. Although celebrated internationally as a humanitarian and peacemaker, Peres true legacy includes the ongoing colonization of Palestinian lands and creation of Israel’s nuclear weapon program.

Report: Israel has detained more than 1,000 Palestinian minors since beginning of 2016

Kate on
Israeli undercover police arrest a 10-year old Palestinian child on October 24, 2014. (Photo: Salih Zeki Fazlıoğlu/Anadolu Agency)

Ma’an reports: “More than 1,000 Palestinian minors have been detained by Israeli forces since the beginning of the year, the Palestinian Committee of Prisoners’ Affairs said on Saturday, in a reported increase from 2015. The Committee said that at least 1,000 Palestinian minors between the ages of 11 and 18 had been detained by Israel since January, including around 70 children from occupied East Jerusalem who were placed under house arrest.”

Rights group: Strip searches at Israel’s Ben Gurion airport are illegal

Allison Deger on
Screenshot from Adalah video on Israeli airport security.

For Arab travelers through Israel’s Ben Gurion airport, it is common knowledge that lengthy questioning and strip searches come before boarding. As it turns out, forcing passengers into airport back rooms and requiring them to remove clothing is illegal under Israeli law, says legal rights group Adalah.

Palestinian fishermen struggle to survive next door to Netanyahu’s palatial suburb

Skylar Lindsay on
Khalid Jurban fixes a fishing net in the Palestinian village of Jisr al-Zarqa. (Photo: Skylar Lindsay)

Skylar Lindsay reports from Jisr al-Zarqa, the only town on the coast of Israel today with an entirely Arab population. Despite being on the Mediterranean, Jisr al-Zarqa is trapped. Fourteen thousand residents occupy a little 1.5 square kilometer strip of coastline where 80 percent of families live below the poverty line. The town is pushed up against the sea by Highway 2 and squeezed from the north by a kibbutz and on the south by Caesarea, the luxurious suburb Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu calls home. “Have you seen Netanyahu’s house?” Palestinian fisherman Khalid Jurban asks, jokingly. “See? Here there are Palestinians and Israelis living right beside.”

In response to new aid deal, Israeli military firms to bid directly for defense contracts through US subsidiaries

Kate on

Ha’aretz reports: “The key to Israeli defense firms not losing business under the new U.S. military aid deal will be to follow Elbit Systems and set up subsidiaries in the United States to bid for defense orders, industry officials said over the weekend. They were speaking days after the United States and Israel signed a 10-year memorandum of understanding that will provide Israel with $3.8 billion in annual grants. In the deal, Israel will no longer be entitled to spend 26.3% of the money – equal to around $815 million annually in recent years – in Israel.”

US aid deal gives green light to Israel’s erasure of Palestine

Jonathan Cook on
(Image: Carlos Latuff)

The clearest message from Israel’s new $38 billion aid package is one delivered to the Palestinians: Washington sees no pressing strategic interest in ending the occupation. It stood up to Netanyahu over the Iran deal but will not risk a damaging clash with Israel and its loyalists in Congress over Palestinian statehood.

Two women’s boats set sail for Gaza in effort to break blockade

Allison Deger on
Mavi Marmara, with images of men who were slain aboard during 2010 mission. 

An all-female crew has set sail on two vessels headed towards Gaza on Wednesday in attempts of breaking the nine-year Israeli blockade on the coastal Mediterranean strip. The “Women’s Boat to Gaza” is the fourth of its kind, captained by women-only with 30 female activists and high-ranking officials aboard the Arabic-named Zaytouna (“Olive”) and the Amal (“hope”).

Commemorating the Shatila massacre, 34 years ago today

Richard Hardigan on
Survivors of the Sabra and Shatilla refugee camp massacre

A dark anniversary: Israel invaded Lebanon in June 1982 to drive out the PLO, and in September it handed over control of Palestinian refugee camps Sabra and Shatila in western Beirut to Christian Phalange militias, which carried out a massacre of about 3000 residents over three days in mid-September.

Israel’s bogus civil war

Jonathan Cook on
Decision at 50, the new peace group

A new Israeli political group called Decision at 50 aims at ending the occupation of the West Bank, but its guiding assumption is that yet again the Israeli public should determine unilaterally the Palestinians’ fate. It has nothing to say about the occupation of Gaza or East Jerusalem, and offers no answer to the subjugation of Palestinians.