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Planting in Palestine – the seeds of a new society?

Hubert Murray on
The Lajee Center in Aida refugee camp outside of the West Bank city of Bethlehem, March 27, 2019. (Photo: Mohammad al-Azza)

It is planting season in Palestine. For the last few weeks Shatha al-Azzeh and her colleagues in the Environmental Unit at the Lajee Center in Aida refugee camp outside of Bethlehem have been working with young people from the camp to set up new rooftop planters.

Farming while Palestinian: a World Water Day outrage

Nancy Murray on
A delegation from Eyewitness Palestine harvests olives at Asira ash-Shamaliya. (Photo: Nancy Murray)

Since 1967 Israel has issued military orders asserting its control over all water sources in the occupied territories, depriving Palestinians access to their own water. What does this water deficit look like on the ground? Nancy Murray explains how Palestinian farms cope without access to irrigated or piped water.  

A ‘stubborn’ Gaza photographer narrowly escapes being killed but vows to return to fence next week

Ahmad Kabariti on

Gaza photographer Mohammed Asad has just turned away from the fence protest Friday when he felt a sting on his cheek and his camera strap jerk and saw Mohammed al Jahjuh, 16, writhing on the ground Al Jahjuh had been killed by an Israeli sniper. Asad narrowly escaped death, but his $2500 Canon camera was destroyed. He will borrow equipment, he vowed, to return to the protests. Israelis don’t understand “the Palestinian’s stubborn brain.”

Doctor’s dispatch: house calls in Aida refugee camp

David Scales on

Dr. David Scales does house calls on patients in Aida refugee camp being treated for high blood pressure and diabetes, “The nearest UNRWA clinic with specialized care to manage complex chronic diseases is about three miles away and uphill. For elderly refugees with limited ability to walk, expensive taxis are the only way to get there.”

Video: Israeli military violently harasses Palestinian family at home

B'Tselem on
In Aug.-Sept. 2018, soldiers came to Hanaa and Jamal Karamah's home in the middle of the night four times. These actions, which are clearly designed to intimidate the residents, are completely unjustifiable.

Without a warrant, Israeli soldiers surround and raid the Karamah house in Hebron at 4AM on 20 Sept. 2018, assaulting and violently arresting Jamal and Hanaa Karamah. “My young daughter Tasnim now panics every time someone comes to visit us,” Jamal told B’Tselem. “I don’t understand why they harassed our family. Why terrorize us like this and arrest us?”

In photos: Khan al-Ahmar prepares for demolition after decade-long battle to remain

Thomas Dallal on

A tiny Palestinian Bedouin town located in the West Bank hills outside of Jerusalem is bracing for an impending eviction to make way for plans to expand an Israeli settlement. This case has implications far beyond the 32 families who live there and the nearly 200 students who attend the school in the town. If the eviction moves forward, it will pave the way for a Jewish-only settlement bloc to divide the West Bank into two, rendering impossible the creation of a unified Palestinian state in the occupied territory. 

‘Trump will only accelerate the creation of a new political movement in Palestine’: Nidal al-Azza on the impact of US policy towards Palestine

Yumna Patel on

Nidal al-Azza, 50, is a Palestinian activist and leading advocate for Palestinian residency and refugee rights. Al-Azza sat down with Mondoweiss to discuss the current US foreign policy in Israel and Palestine, and the effects of Trump’s political decisions on the Palestinian people, Palestinian leadership, and the future of the Palestinian cause.

Palestinian farmers mourn crops lost to settler attacks in this year’s grape harvest

Yumna Patel on

Every year, in late August, Palestinians begin celebrating the grape harvest, a quintessential part of Palestinian life and heritage. For farmers, a years worth of intensive labor has led up to this moment, when they cut the grapes off the vines and take their wares to markets and street carts. For most, the profits made off of a year’s harvest will support their entire family financially until the next year. This year’s harvest, for many farmers across the occupied West Bank, is bittersweet, marred by the violence of months past.

Palestinians on high alert as Israel prepares to hand over East Jerusalem nature reserve and Muslim cemetery to settlers

Yumna Patel and Saleh Zghari on

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.”

By razing Khan al-Ahmar, Israel will bulldoze illusions of peace process

Jonathan Cook on

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.”

Palestinians protest in Ramallah against the ‘Authority of Shame’

Jaclynn Ashly on

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.”

Haifa activists vow to continue protests following ‘brutal’ police crackdown

Jaclynn Ashly on

Protests have taken ahold of Haifa over the last few days as Palestinian citizens of Israel demonstrate against the actions of the Israeli military in Gaza. They were met by police who rights groups say used excessive force, including breaking the knee of one protester. “The first reaction of the police to stop the demonstration was to use violence,” Bashar Ali, 22, told Mondoweiss. “We can’t be surprised by this when at the same time Israeli soldiers are using deadly weapons on nonviolent demonstrations near Israel’s separation fence in Gaza.”

Israel detains Palestinian teen with severe head injury, again

Jaclynn Ashly on

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.

Israeli cemeteries in the West Bank send a message– Settlers are never leaving

Jaclynn Ashly on

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.”

In Photos: While the world watches Gaza, Israeli forces invade Nabi Saleh

Anne Paq and Heidi Motola on

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.”

Clashing with the Jewish state: ultra-Orthodox Israelis who reject Zionism

Jaclynn Ashly on

Many of the Eda Haredit, an ultra-Orthodox group in Jerusalem, are descendants of the Old Yishuv, Jews who resided in historic Palestine under Ottoman and then British rule. The group opposes the Israeli state and any attempts at assimilating them into the larger Israeli society. The cloistered neighborhood of Mea Shearim has become a symbol for the group and outside many Eda Haredit homes hangs a sign that reads: “Here lives a non-Zionist Jew.”