Last week a man in Salem, Oregon was charged with assault, intimidation and unlawful use of a weapon after he yelled at an employee working in a Middle Eastern restaurant, “go back to your country, terrorist” and then attacked him with a plastic pipe. The victim’s daughter, Layla Abdel-Jawad writes the man, Jason Kendall, suffers from a mental illness and should not be charged with a hate crime.
Monthly Archives: March 2017
Gerald Kaufman, who died on February 26th 2017 at the age of 86, served as a member of Parliament for 47 continuous years and became the Father of the House of Commons. In his early years as an MP Kaufman was a strong supporter of the Israeli state and was a member of both Labour Friends of Israel and Poalei Zion, the British wing of the Israeli Labour Party. Tony Greenstein writes, “Perhaps the most fitting tribute to Gerald Kaufman that there can be was that he wasn’t a hypocrite. Kaufman had grown up with Labour Zionism and its myth of making the desert bloom, but unlike most supporters of Zionism in the Labour Party today, Gerald Kaufman was sincere in wanting to see a two-state solution. For him it wasn’t a convenient cover for an apartheid Greater Israel. Kaufman was quite sincere in his hostility to Israeli rule over millions of Palestinians and he didn’t hesitate to speak out against the occupation and repression that it entailed.”
Aid to Israel is a “cutout” in the Trump budget, says the State Department. Climate change is a loser, so is aid to foreign countries. But Israel stays at the highest level, and the Republican Jewish Coalition is thrilled.
In a new book, The Rise of the Arab American Left, Pamela Pennock, a history professor at the University of Michigan-Dearborn, documents the rise of Arab American leftwing political activism after the 1967 war, including organizations such as the Arab American Ass’n of University Graduates that built coalitions on the left.
Adding to his already rabidly racist remarks, Iowa Congressman Steve King uses a comparison to Israel to make his demographic obsession seem more acceptable.
“I hadn’t been shot at in seven and a half years. In the week prior, some tear gas cans were fired by the Israeli army at my fellow Veterans For Peace members and me in the Palestinian town of Bil’in. But for a former tough guy Marine, that doesn’t count. Hebron was different.” Matthew Hoh from Veterans for Peace shares his experience during the annual Open Shuhada Street march in Hebron and the importance of grassroots Palestinian leaders like Issa Amro.
Fourteen years ago today, an Israeli soldier driving a bulldozer ran over and killed American peace activist Rachel Corrie who was in the Gaza Strip protecting a Palestinian home from demolition.
A United Nations agency today labeled Israel an “apartheid regime,” in a report where the country was said to be guilty “beyond a reasonable doubt” of the “grave charge” of operating systematic discrimination and oppression against the Palestinian people.
The United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA) who published the document, “Israeli Practices towards the Palestinian, People and the Question of Apartheid,”[PDF] is mandated to review Israeli aggressions.
Contradicting the liberal press, Edward Snowden says the Deep State are government policy-making individuals who survive changes in the presidency, and do things like authorize torture.
At the most fundamental level, all U.S. ambassadors share a common mission: to represent the national interests and policies of the United States. David Friedman, President Donald Trump’s nomination for ambassador to Israel, is unable to fulfill this basic obligation because his loyalties lie elsewhere, which is clear from his own statements and views.
It used to be that PEP was a safe place: Progressive Except Palestine. But as progressives seek to build an anti-Trump coalition on the left, Zionism is coming under a lot of pressure, so far mostly among feminists.
Gaza’s first start-up incubator, Gaza Sky Geeks, has announced an open call for businesses, organizations, and individuals to submit their project ideas and coders in Gaza will build them for free.
Interfaith Peace-Builders Program Director Emily Siegel writes: The new law passed last week in the Israeli Knesset targets individuals active in Boycott Divestment and Sanctions campaigns against Israel. We see the principle goal of the legislation to be Israel’s attempt to intimidate activists not to travel; to not try and enter; not to see the realities on the ground that only strengthen the need for BDS and other forms of activism. Israel’s political and military establishment would be thrilled if activists in solidarity with the Palestinian struggle for human rights stopped visiting Palestine. We should not give them that satisfaction.
How do you engage people with the Palestinian struggle for freedom, when you’re faced with the slickest and most well-funded propaganda machine the world has ever known? Rory Evans writes a trendy new hotel in Bethlehem created by the graffiti artist Banksy has opened to the public in an effort to breathe new life into the fight for Palestinian justice.
The media has embraced Team Israel’s unlikely success at the World Baseball Classic, referring to the team as a “Cinderella” story, “David and Goliath,” and a “fairy-tale.” In this “softball” coverage, Israel—home to the most powerful military in the Middle East and a cruel system of apartheid directed at the Palestinian people—gets to be the plucky, lovable underdog. Writing in the Forward, David Hazony argues “Team Israel is very much the story of Israel itself,” but central to the story of Israel itself is also the dispossession and expulsion of hundreds of thousands of Palestinians from their lands and a decades-long occupation.
Taha Muhammad Ali is an unlikely dramatic hero. His arms shake with age and infirmity, his legs occasionally buckle, and he often appears lost on stage, as if adrift in a vast expanse of sadness. But for an hour the story of this Palestinian poet has a vice-like hold on our attention and our hearts.
The one-man show Taha receives its English-language premiere on Wednesday at the Kennedy Center for the performing arts in Washington DC. It offers not only a rare chance to learn about one of Palestine’s finest poets, but provides a visceral account of what it was like to live through the Nakba – the Catastrophe that befell hundreds of thousands of Palestinians who were expelled from their homeland in 1948.
Over the weekend, an Israeli activist campaigning to pardon a soldier who shot and killed a wounded Palestinian in Hebron last year, held a costume contest for children dressed as the soldier for the Jewish holiday of Purim.
Mahmoud al-Araj, the father of slain Basil al-Araj, left his home on Sunday expecting to take part in a peaceful demonstration outside a courthouse in Ramallah where a judge officially dropped an investigation into his son. He ended up in the hospital after getting caught in the middle of a chaotic crackdown by Palestinian Authority (PA) forces wielding heavy batons, and shooting pepper spray and tear gas at Palestinians protesting the death of Basil, the imprisonment of his five friends and the court’s decision to pursue charges against them for allegedly storing illegal weapons.
Israel seems to be cracking down on activists who support boycott. It detained Jeff Halper the human rights activist in East Jerusalem and did not allow Hugh Lanning, head of British Palestine Solidarity Committee, to enter the country.
How can the New York Times print a piece about Russia Today as propaganda on March 9 — “RT is unquestionably a case study in the complexity of modern propaganda” — and two days later publish a piece like this and keep a straight face? “Allies Fear Trump Is Eroding America’s Moral Authority.”
The Palestinian prisoner rights group Samidoun reports novelist Khalida Ghosheh was released on bail on Saturday. Still, she faces charges over her fictional book about Palestinians collaborators for Israel. Samidoun writes, Ghosheh said while in jail “the interrogators claimed that her novel poses a threat to collaborators working with the occupation, saying that the novel reflects her own experiences and aims to warn young people about ways [the Israeli authorities] may attempt to compel them to become collaborators.”
Bill Clinton deplores identity politics for creating an “us-and-them” world in which nobody wants to live “under the same set of rules.” And Yitzhak Rabin would never have divided Jerusalem, his late wife Leah believed.
Israeli boycott law portends action against Israelis “who do not support the primacy of Israel’s Jewish character over its democratic aspirations,” 182 Jewish studies scholars warn in an open letter deploring that law.
“One has to be brave to participate in non-violent dissent, and unfortunately there are many more decent than brave people,” says Israeli human rights lawyer Michael Sfard. “Israeli politicians are afraid,” and there have been a “tsunami of bills to close the democratic space available to us.”
There is no space for Zionism in any movement which seeks to alleviate even an iota of oppression from marginalized people. There is no space, no room should be made, no platform to be held, for Zionism, which is diametrically opposed to intersectional feminism, both in theory and praxis.