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February 2014

Israel lobby AIPAC is down, but not out — yet

Medea Benjamin on

It seems the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) is starting to lose its iron-clad grip on our policymakers, but it’s certainly not time to sound the death knell. AIPAC still has a lot of muscle and will keep trying to flex it. Code Pink’s Medea Benjamin runs down what we have to look forward to coming out of the 2014 AIPAC policy conference.

Thought experiment. Dateline Ukraine

David Bromwich on

The New York Times accuses Russia of playing a role in the tumult in Crimea as part of a global power game. But can’t the same claim be made about the US role in the Ukraine tumult?

Making visible the Nakba: a US education project

Donna Nevel on

In the U.S. and the American Jewish community, the story of the Nakba is often disregarded, focusing, instead, on the creation of Israel as a safe haven for Jews, without acknowledging the dispossession of the Palestinian people that began with the founding of the state. — Donna Nevel on the Nakba Education Project

Rising star Naftali Bennett is the new standard bearer for hardline Zionism

Ira Glunts on

On January 28, Naftali Bennett gave a spellbinder of a speech (see video above) at The Institute for National Security Studies (INSS) annual conference. The speech positioned Bennett as the standard bearer for a type of hardline Zionism which unlike its mainstream political opposition, does not even pretend that it is willing to make peace with the Palestinians.

Anti-BDS activism and the appeal to authority

Steven Salaita on

For months, in response to recent BDS successes, people have asked, “How will Zionists react?” The inevitable backlash has arrived and we have enough examples to answer the question. Specific tactics differ, but the overall strategy has been an intensive appeal to authority.

AIPAC denies us credentials for its policy conference

Philip Weiss on

Treasury Secretary Jack Lew will be there. Secretary of State John Kerry. And 14,000 delegates and a lot of Congresspeople. But AIPAC doesn’t want covering its policy conference. We got shot down for credentials

Cut off arms to Israel, Amnesty Int’l says, citing 22 civilians killed at protests last year

Philip Weiss on

Israel has killed dozens of Palestinian civilians at peaceful demonstrations against occupation in the last three years and done so with impunity, says Amnesty International. The USA, the EU, and other should suspend all transfers of munitions, weapons and other equipment to Israel. “Too much civilian blood has been spilled. This long-standing pattern of abuse must be broken.”

The cowardly Leon

Philip Weiss on

Leon Wieseltier misrepresents the New Republic’s record of supporting Israel through the Lebanon war and the Gaza massacre, in a letter attacking colleague John Judis that has done for Judis’s book what Eric Alterman’s friendly fire did for Max Blumenthal’s — gotten it tons of attention

Boycotting the land you love: Israeli activist Leehee Rothschild on BDS and the struggle for Palestinian rights

Alex Kane on

Leehee Rothschild is a rarity in Israel. She’s one of the few Israeli Jews to fully support the campaign to boycott, divest from and sanction Israel–the country she lives in and calls home. Two weeks ago, Rothschild was in New York, and Mondoweiss’ Alex Kane met up with her in Brooklyn. They discussed BDS, the role of Israelis in the Palestinian movement for freedom and how Israeli society reacts to the radical left.

‘Safe Hillel’ Exposed: Undermining open dialogue in the Jewish community

Holly Bicerano on

Boston University has recently become the headquarters for a new reactionary movement called “Safe Hillel,” which seeks to push back against the growing Open Hillel movement. Their stated goal is to “ensure that Hillel remains a safe place for Jews of all backgrounds to practice Judaism and a safe place for those that support Israel.”

Time for world leaders to stop inflating Israel’s bubble of denial

Jonathan Cook on

Israelis have grown content living in a large bubble of denial. Netanyahu and his ministers are making every effort to reinforce that bubble, just as they have tried to shield Israelis from the fact that they live in the Middle East, not Europe, by building walls on every side – both physical and bureaucratic – to exclude Palestinians, Arab neighbours, foreign workers and asylum seekers.