Just outside the walls of the Old City in occupied East Jerusalem, a years long demographic battle between the Israeli state and Palestinian residents of the city has found new life in recent weeks. Last week Israel advanced a bill allowing residential settlements to be built inside areas zoned for national parks in East Jerusalem. Jawad Siyam of the Wadi Hilweh Information Center tells Mondoweiss: “This is all done with the intention of emptying Jerusalem of Palestinians and part of the plans to make Jerusalem a Jewish-majority city.”
Category Archives: Occupation
Israel finally built an access road to the West Bank village of Khan al-Ahmar last week, after half a century of delays. But the only vehicles allowed along it are the bulldozers scheduled to sweep away its 200 inhabitants’ homes. As Bedouin resident Ibrahim Abu Dawoud observed: “For us, leaving the desert is death.”
Israeli forces began razing buildings in two Palestinian-Bedouin villages today in preparation for taking over the land, alarming human rights groups who say such a move would effectively cut the West Bank into two. Angela Godfrey-Goldstein of Jahalin Solidarity called the move Trump’s gift to Netanyahu for July 4th, while lawmakers from Britain’s Labour party called for a decisive response.
The detention of Palestinian legislator and feminist Khalida Jarrar is, in many ways, unexceptional. In Israel, where mainstream political discourse is decidedly anti-democratic, the detention of Palestinians, including lawmakers, without charge or trial is an everyday occurrence. No evidence has been brought against Jarrar, and yet there is every chance that she could spend the rest of her life in the Israeli military detention system.
Palestinians took to the streets of Ramallah city Sunday night, demanding that the Palestinian Authority end its sanctions on the besieged Gaza Strip that have exacerbated a humanitarian crisis in the small Palestinian enclave. The crowd chanted “With our souls and blood, we will save you Gaza” and “Shame on you, you sold Gaza in dollars.”
On Sunday, Mohammad Tamimi, 15, was thrown into the back of an unmarked car by undercover Israeli agents dressed as Arabs in the occupied village of Nabi Saleh and detained until the end of the night. Mohammad is recovering from a life-threatening injury after being shot in the head by Israeli forces five months ago.
“We build, or we don’t build, either way, they, take our money and our dreams. Together we need to find a new way to stay here,” said Mariam, 16, a Palestinian from the Bedouin village of Abu Nuwar.
Israeli settlers have built 32 cemeteries across the West Bank. Palestinians say these markers are painful reminders that settlers have no intention of ever leaving the occupied Palestinian territory. In the last two years, Israeli cities in the West Bank, Ariel and Ma’ale Adumim, have established cemeteries. Ghassan Daghlas: “It affects us psychologically. The graves have a hidden message that they will never leave our country.”
On December 10, 2017, 17-year-old, Abdul-Khaliq Burnat was on his way to buy pizza from a neighboring village, when Israeli armed soldiers ambushed the car that he and his two friends were travelling in. He has now been sentenced to serve 19 months in Ofer Military Prison for stone throwing and cutting the fence at the illegally built separation wall on his village’s land. In addition, the court decided that Abdul-Khaliq’s family must pay a fine of 18,000 NIS (around $5,100). The family is now raising funds to pay this large fine.
The Israeli border police officer who shot and killed Palestinian teenager Nadim Nuwara in 2014 was sentenced on Wednesday by an Israeli court to nine months in prison and a $13,940 (50,000 NIS) fine for negligent homicide. Nuwara’s father Saim said the sentence “does not even come close to justice.”
On Friday, April 20, Israeli soldiers invaded the West Bank village of Nabi Saleh, home to the Tamimi family. The Israeli forces instigated clashes with Palestinian youth which lasted several hours, during which the soldiers shot scores of tear gas, fired rubber-coated metal bullets and live ammunition that wounded two of the protesters. “What’s happening now is what is happening every week, sometimes everyday, since nearly nine years”, explained Belal Tamimi. “The soldiers try to surround the village, they don’t want anyone to be near the spring area that the settlers occupied nine years ago. Every Friday, the situation is horrible.”
Haaretz reports: “Israel says the migrants have 60 days to accept the offer to leave the country for an unnamed African destination in exchange for $3,500 and a plane ticket. Those who don’t by April 1 will be incarcerated indefinitely.”
When he was 15-years-old, Hamza Abu Hashem was attacked by Israeli military dogs, and left with serious injuries on his legs, arms, and shoulder. In a video of his attack, Israeli soldiers can be heard saying “give it to him, son of a bitch” and “who’s afraid?” as the teenager cried and screamed in pain. Now, four years after the attack that left his mind and body scarred for life, Hamza, along with his family, is suing the Israeli government over the attack, as well as the Dutch company that has been supplying Israel with attack dogs for more than 20 years.
Wasan Abu-Baker pens a reflection on growing up in Palestine as a “child of the stone” dedicated to Ahed Tamimi. She recalls when her father first came home to live with the family after years in prison. Wasan was already seven: “I still remember those days when we came home from school and then going out to the field to pick the olives, then coming back home to finish our homework. After the harvest was completed we would take the olives to our family factory where the olives were pressed to make olive oil. I remember standing next to my dad to have a taste of the freshest olive oil along with my pita bread. He used to say that once you drink olive oil it becomes part of your soul. I will never forget and miss always miss the smell of olives on those days.”
Badee Dwaik: At the demonstration the children carried signs protesting the occupation, an all encompassing word for the abuses and indignities that are carried out against them by Israeli soldiers and settlers. They chanted, “every child deserves a childhood.”
The Israeli military spying unit 8200 came to public attention in 2014 when reserve soldiers refused to serve as “tools for the deepening of the military regime in the occupied territories.” Now, facing a shortage of soldiers the unit will be seeking to get its recruits from the 10th grade.
A month after she slapped a soldier in occupied Nabi Saleh, 16-year-old Ahed Tamimi faces a final bail hearing today at court. She has been imprisoned since December 19. Professor Asa Kasher, author of the IDF ‘ethics code, opines that Ahed Tamimi is dangerous, because she may slap again.
The Israeli military prosecution against Ahed Tamimi has indicted her on 5 counts. Jonathan Ofir analyses the most essential of them – ‘incitement’ – and how it is based on arguably flawed translation of her mention on Facebook of “martyrdom operations” to mean “suicide bombings,” in an effort to make Tamimi into a terrorist in the eyes of the world.
There is no stomach which does not turn when seeing video of 16-year-old Ahed Tamimi slapping an Israeli soldier, journalist Ben Caspit writes. And therefore he recommends: “we should exact a price at some other opportunity, in the dark, without witnesses and cameras.” This is an incitement to crime.
Hanukkah is a holiday of Jewish liberation from occupation 2150 years ago. But Jews cannot celebrate the Jewish holidays as a matter of the ancient past at a time when Israel continuously presses its ‘Jewish liberation’ upon the besieged Palestinians, who are crushed under the boot of the ‘most moral army’.
On December 14, the FCC will vote on a proposal to repeal government regulations known as “net neutrality” which ensure that internet service providers treat all data equally. As this critical issue unfolds in the U.S., it is worth looking at the case of internet freedom for Palestinians living under Israeli occupation in the West Bank where the severe technological gap is just another example of how Israel dominates and restricts almost all aspects of Palestinian life.
Retired Israeli general Amiram Levin is regarded as a liberal Zionist and is a strong supporter of Labor leader Avi Gabbay. In an interview, he says “Palestinians deserved the occupation” and Israel should give Palestinian leadership “a carrot in the form of a state, and if it doesn’t want it, we’ll tear it apart…. if they violate agreements, the next time we’ll fight here they will not remain, we will toss them across the Jordan…. We were way too nice in ‘67.”
Some children in Hebron have difficulty getting in and out of the school because of an Israeli military post and army gate about 30 yards from their classrooms. During October and November 2017 the Israeli human rights group B’Tselem found four instances where Palestinian students and teachers at the Ziad Hamuda Elementary School were stopped, searched, and abused on their commutes.
“Your child is taken to an interrogation room and bullied into confessing a “crime”–insulting the honor of a soldier, for instance, or throwing stones at a wall. Like you, your son was born into a military occupation and under military law a soldier’s honor is worth 10 years of your son’s life.”–Nyla Matuk
Israeli police entered Zahwat al-Quds school in occupied East Jerusalem on Monday, arresting the principal of the school as well as three teachers in front of students, before closing down the school. The arrests came one day after Israeli forces detained several teachers in the southern Hebron Hills on their walk to school, again in the presence of their students.