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March 2013

A child’s dream under occupation

Walaa Ghussein on

In Jabaliya refugee camp in Gaza, 13-year-old Asmaa, battling kidney disease, has a dream. “I want to visit the Holy Land of Mecca to pray for God and ask Him for His mercy

‘Do you know any Arabs in London?’ Israeli airport authorities grill British photojournalist before kicking him out

Mark Kerrison on

Mark Kerrison was detained at Ben Gurion airport and then deported earlier this month for reasons that were never explained, though border officials seemed very concerned that he might talk to Palestinians. Here he relates his ordeal, including one comfort he had in jail: “My eyes were most drawn, though, to some words in small, inconspicuous lettering immediately above my head: ‘I don’t pretend to know night-time from day, but if I were your God I’d have something to say.’”

Federal anti-discrimination law being used to shut down criticism of occupation

Annie Robbins on

People who speak out on Israel, people who oppose the occupation, people who support BDS, boycott divestment and sanctions, the people who talk about the Zionist lobby in the US as being powerful, those people’s speech are being suppressed. The people who are speaking in favor [of Israel] without any criticism– that’s the speech that’s allowed. And so they basically turned this upside down — Michael Ratner on federal application of Title VI

Unlikely Jerusalem village takes the lead on Land Day

Allison Deger on

Land Day is an annual commemoration of six killed during a 1976 march against land expropriations in the Galilee. Last year Palestinians protested in thousands to mark Land Day. This year’s protests, at Qalandia, Damascus Gate and the southwest Jerusalem village of Beit Safafa, failed to capture the same momentum– and may signal a change in Palestinian attitudes about demonstrations.

Israeli army captain assaults valiant protester Ezra Nawi

Philip Weiss on

Ezra Nawi relates his harassment: “An IDF captain shamelessly assaulting me, trying to snatch the camera from my hand, throwing a stun grenade and a tear gas grenade at us from practically zero distance”

Not a happy Passover for Hebron’s Palestinians

Allison Deger on

Hundreds of Israelis traveled over the Green Line to observe Passover this week at a carnival-like event as Israeli officials closed the Ibrahimi Mosque to Palestinians in the West Bank’s largest city. The contrast between the Palestinian and Israeli Jewish areas was stark. While most Palestinians closed up shop in Hebron’s Old City due to the threat of settler harassment, Israeli Jews marked Passover by dancing in the streets, surrounded by high-flying Israeli flags and armed soldiers.

A tale of two rabbis

Donna Nevel on

One NY rabbi could hear the questions, but another barred them from his synagogue: Is Israel—or can it be—a democracy? Is there—or can there be—equality in Israel? Can a Jewish state be democratic?

My 72 depressing hours on Obama’s trail

Alex Kane on

If you ever had a burning desire to see the American-Israeli alliance shine, there wasn’t a better place to be than Jerusalem last week. Those three days were full of symbolic gestures that testified to the rock-solid U.S.-Israeli alliance. It was more than enough time to appreciate the enormous work ahead of those wishing to shift policy on the conflict in the U.S.

‘Look at the world through their eyes’ — Obama should take his own advice

Richard Falk on

Obama should never have undertaken his trip without a willingness to treat the Palestinian reality with at least equal dignity to that of the Israeli reality and without some indication of how he imagines a Palestinian state becoming a reality. But the president is eager in his second term to avoid being distracted by any allegation back home that he is not giving Israel its proper due.

BRICS memo: Time ‘to take decisive action against the increasing Israeli Occupation as well as Israel’s apartheid policies’

Annie Robbins on

Yesterday the BRICS Memorandum on Palestine was officially submitted to the forum of emerging market powers at the 5th BRICS Summit (BRICS stands for Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa) currently taking place in Durban, South Africa. The memorandum, represents the will of South African civil society and political organizations including South Africa’s largest trade union federation, COSATU.

Lessons learned from a box of matzoh

Iris Keltz on

Trader Joe’s sells matzoh made in Jerusalem, possibly in occupied territory, violating boycott principles and carrying a huge carbon footprint too