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February 2017

The 50th anniversary of the occupation will rock the Jewish establishment

Philip Weiss on

In three months the American Jewish community is going to hit an iceberg called the Jubilee, the 50th anniversary of the occupation/Six Day War. The collision is going to change the Jewish establishment. The fractures that have been developing for years over Israel are going to break out in public agony. The anniversay will change the American Jewish relationship to Israel forever, as the Six Day War did 50 years go.

Commemorating 75 years of advancing prophetic Judaism, free of nationalism and politicization

Allan C. Brownfeld on

On the 75th anniversary of the American Council for Judaism, Allan C. Brownfeld writes about how the group has challenged the Zionist philosophy which holds that Israel is the “homeland” of all Jews. He explains how the group advanced the philosophy of Judaism as a religion of universal values, not a nationality, and has maintained that Americans of Jewish faith are American by nationality and Jews by religion — just as other Americans are Protestants, Catholics or Muslims.

Elor Azarya’s ‘normative’ support for genocide

Jonathan Ofir on

Last week, Israeli medic-soldier Elor Azarya was given an excessively lenient sentence of 1.5 years in prison for killing Abdel Fattah Al Sharif in Hebron. The military court based its conclusion in part on Azarya’s “positive personality and his being a normative person”. Yet this was the same person who wrote “kill them all” on social media as Israel considered a ceasefire with Hamas during the 2014 Gaza onslaught. This may seem to be a contradiction, but Jonathan Ofir writes the Azarya case cannot be seen as disconnected from the overall genocidal vein within Israeli society that he and his actions represent.

Palestinians in Hebron plead for international intervention to stop settler violence

Sheren Khalel on

Palestinian activists say life in Hebron has become unbearable, and that international intervention is the only hope to ease the daily tensions and violence carried out by Israeli settlers against Palestinians in the city. “We are fighting a just cause, we are trying to end the occupation and get our human rights, our city, and our country back and bring the occupation government to justice for their illegal actions and crimes, but we need international support,” activist Farid al-Atrash tells Mondoweiss.

Campus wars

Nada Elia on

Activists for Palestinian rights have long known that our universities are overwhelmingly hostile environments where freedom of speech about, and critical inquiry into, Israel’s oppressive policies are heavily censored. Over the past few weeks, two separate and noteworthy incidents have illustrated this heavy-handed approach.

The curious red line for Milo Yiannapoulos

Katie Miranda on

Racism, Islamophobia and sexism were not a problem for Milo Yiannapoulos’s relationship to the mainstream media. But pedophilia was the red line.

Iran beats US for wrestling world cup, but you wouldn’t know it from watching NBC

Robert Visznevski on

When Donald Trump stopped all incoming travelers from seven primarily-Muslim countries, Iran was on the list. Iran retaliated by blocking all Americans from traveling to Iran, including the U.S. wrestling team who were scheduled to compete in the annual wrestling version of the World Cup. When the ban got knocked down stateside, the Iranians relented and the plot thickened when it all came down to the U.S. vs. Iran in the finals. You might think a sports drama like that would be of interest to the media. But NBC, who had rights to cover the event, instead opted for a blackout on it.

Palestinian Americans find Trump’s stance on Israel/Palestine, Friedman appointment ‘severely distressing’

Sheren Khalel on

Donald Trump’s pick for the U.S. ambassador to Israel has turned out to be one of the most controversial appointments in recent years, with five former U.S. ambassadors to Israel condemning the pick, calling David Friedman “unqualified for the position” due to his “extreme, radical positions.” While Friedman’s appointment has also been condemned by Jewish Americans as well as international human rights groups, Palestinian Americans, in particular, feel disenfranchised by the prospect of a Friedman appointment.

Transnational meetings & meals of resistance: Palestinian-Chileans show solidarity with the Mapuche, an indigenous nation of South America in active struggle for self-determination 

Devin G. Atallah on

Dr. Devin Atallah, a Palestinian-Chilean psychologist chronicles his participation in the ‘First Session of the Mapuche Constituent Assembly.’ The Mapuche are the largest first nation and most populous indigenous group in Chile. Atallah calls the gathering “one of the most powerful and meaningful collective manifestations of decolonization that I have witnessed.” It leads him to organize “Meals of Resistance” in Santiago with members of the Mapuche indigenous group, Chilean allies, and members of the Palestinian-Chilean community, who all come together to show solidarity, share freedom foods and stories of resistance and resilience.

Saying ‘I Am Muslim, Too’ is not standing in solidarity with Muslims

Roqayah Chamseddine on

A recent rally in New York City sought to protest the Trump administration’s executive order targeting Muslim immigrants under the slogan ‘I Am Muslim, Too.’ Roqayah Chamseddine writes that the rally, and the popular Shepard Fairey image of a woman wearing a headscarf with a US flag design, may be doing more harm than good, “You don’t need to be Muslim to express solidarity, nor does resistance demand any attachment to nationalist mythology which turns Muslims into commodities only worth defending should they express the right amount of patriotism.”

DNC debate batters Trump– but Israel support must be ‘bipartisan,’ says Ellison

Philip Weiss on

The subject of Israel and Jews came up very early in last night’s debate on CNN of the eight candidates to be Democratic National Committee chairperson. The job is to be voted on by the DNC this weekend in Atlanta. During the debate one candidate after another denounced Trump on one issue after another, and put down the donor class of the Democratic Party too, in favor of the grassroots. But on the issue of Israel conservative bipartisanship is the only way, officially.

Natives and the blessings of progress

Abba Solomon on

From the beginning, Zionists regarded Palestinians as primitive natives– “2,000 or 3,000 years behind the Jews in civilization,” as one Jewish leader put it.