There are many parallels between Martin Luther King Jr’s call for “direct political action” leading to a crisis for the Jim Crow South, in his letter from Birmingham jail in 1963, and Ahed Tamimi’s courageous slap of a soldier after her cousin was maimed in occupied Nabi Saleh last month, leading to her imprisonment for nearly a month already.
Category Archives: The Tamimi Family & Nabi Saleh Resistance
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.
J Street, the liberal Zionist group, has issued two statements expressing anguish about Ahed Tamimi slapping an Israeli soldier occupying her family property in Nabi Saleh. Neither mentions the fact that hours before the slapping an Israeli soldier shot her cousin in the face, apparently maiming him.
Ahed Tamimi and Nabi Saleh have shown that popular unarmed resistance – if it is to discomfort Israel and the world – cannot afford to be passive or polite. It must be fearless, antagonistic and disruptive. Most of all, it must hold up a mirror to the oppressor. Ahed has exposed the gun-wielding bully lurking in the soul of too many Israelis. That is a lesson worthy of Gandhi or Mandela.
Appraisals of Ahed Tamimi’s looks have been featured in reports around the world on the 16-year-old girl who slapped a soldier in her occupied Palestinian village: her long blonde hair, her western-style clothing. But this is perverse and demeaning. Ahed Tamimi’s bravery has nothing to do with what she wears or what color her hair is. The discussion needs to be about what she did, not her looks.
Why is Haaretz, a supposedly liberal outlet, publishing a one-sided, decontextualized smear piece on the Tamimi family by a known propagandist?
Israeli forces killed 17-year-old Mus‘ab Firas al-Tamimi from the West Bank village of Deir Nitham near Ramallah. “He died shortly after the occupation forces fired a bullet into his neck,” a spokesman for the Palestinian health ministry told Al Jazeera. Mus‘ab was a member of the Tamimi family, who live in the adjacent village of Nabi Saleh.
Ariel Gold writes, “Before we consider whether Ahed deserves a life behind bars, we must first take a closer look at what is a criminal action, and what is a life of enduring state violence. Is it the 16-year-old girl who dares to raise her hand to a fully armed Israeli soldier who is the criminal? Or is it the ongoing illegal occupation that places soldiers in the lives of unarmed teenage girls?”
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.
The divergent western reactions to Ahed Tamimi’s slapping occupying soldiers– of celebration or condemnation– show there is no middle ground left in the discourse of the conflict; but the progressive side is gaining some new adherents. Lisa Goldman was moved by the case to state that she lost her Zionism observing the violence in Nabi Saleh.
The Palestinian prisoner’s network Samidoun reports the Tamimi women have been charged in Israeli military court: “Palestinian teen and youth activist Ahed Tamimi, 16, whose arrest and detention by the Israeli occupation military has drawn worldwide attention, was charged in an Israeli military court with multiple allegations on Monday, 1 January. Her mother, Nariman, was also charged with several allegations related to the Tamimi family’s anti-occupation organizing and expression; the detention of both Ahed and her mother was extended for an additional eight days, until next Monday, when the military court will convene again.”
The power of Ahed Tamimi’s slap in the eyes of Palestinians: “Your slapping of those soldiers speaks for all of us,” Hatim Kanaaneh writes. “Israelis slapped us in 1948 and in 1967 and innumerable times since. By slapping their faces, you are telling those aggressors to permit the return of the exiled Palestinian Refugees and to end the apartheid their state forces on us under the dogma of ‘the Jewish State.’”
Mariam Barghouti reports from Nariman, Nour, and Ahed Tamimi’s latest hearing where the three women’s detention was extended even though no official charges have been brought against them. Nawal Tamimi, Ahed’s aunt, tells Mondoweiss, “in the end, this is an occupation. If they could they would officially charge us with the crime of being born Palestinian.”
When liberal Zionist groups say anything about Ahed Tamimi, the 16-year-old Palestinian girl who has been imprisoned without charges for slapping an Israeli soldier occupying her back yard, it’s to praise Israeli soldiers for their restraint. They know the case has made the Palestinian cause heroic in the eyes of the world, but they are not allowed to identify with Palestinians.
As the #MeToo movement continues to build and uplift more marginalized voices CODEPINK’s Ariel Gold and Taylor Morley write that Ahed Tamimi should be regarded as a pillar in the movement: “Ahed is revoking her consent for Israel’s brutal occupation. She refuses to give her consent to Israeli forces that invade her family’s home in yet another vicious, meritless night raid. She continually confronts her aggressors and stands up to the violent system of power that keeps perpetuating this cycle of abuse against Palestinians, and for that, she is threatened with sexual violence. Now is the time for voices in the #MeToo movement to call for her release and help draw the parallels.”
Jonathan Ofir explains why the slap that was delivered to Ahed Tamimi before she slapped back, is hardly mentioned at all – and how it represents a grand pathology of denial.
Prominent Israeli journalist Ben Caspit caused international furor last week, when he wrote of Ahed Tamimi, “in the case of the girls, we should exact a price at some other opportunity, in the dark, without witnesses and cameras”. Caspit has felt the heat in response to his insidious suggestions, and is now in crisis control mode. In a new article Caspit trys to “clarify” in English but Jonathan Ofir says the attempt at spin control is futile and disingenuous: “Caspit, in his desperate attempt to backpedal, is providing an even more pathetic article, which suggests that its just the ‘goyim’ who didn’t understand Israeli jargon.”
Through a bullhorn to cut through the hum of holiday shoppers, some forty people rallied in New York City’s Union Square Friday night in support and solidarity for Ahed Tamimi, the 16-year-old Palestinian girl arrested by Israeli soldiers during a pre-dawn raid of her family’s home in the occupied West Bank village of Nabi Saleh. Mariah Tamimi called Ahed the best representative for her people, telling Mondoweiss, “she inspires me; and I think she inspires the rest of Palestine.”
In the five days since Ahed Tamimi’s arrest, Israeli authorities have attempted to coerce confession from her without access to a lawyer or a parent; moved her from the occupied West Bank in contravention of international law; and transferred the sleep-deprived teenager between at least three different detention centers and prisons, including West Jerusalem’s infamous Moscobiyeh detention center. All of this and Tamimi has not yet been charged with a crime.
The New York Times ran a piece on the very different ways that Israelis and Palestinians see the slapping incident involving 16-year-old Ahed Tamimi and an Israeli soldier. It treats an occupying soldier and a 16-year-old girl as equals and does not quote a single member of the Tamimi family, whose land the soldier was on when the incident took place.
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.
Today the arrest of Ahed Tamimi, 16, in occupied Nabi Saleh early Tuesday morning, after a video surfaced showing her slapping an Israeli soldier, is gaining global attention, including from the Washington Post. The malignant piece in the Post quotes Israelis calling her “Shirley Temper,” as if Ahed chose to be in an occupied besieged village as a career move at age 10.
“They pushed me away when I tried to give Ahmed some clothes. It was very cold,” a mother in Nabi Saleh tells Richard Hardigan of her son’s recent arrest by Israeli soldiers. Nearly 100 children from Nabi Saleh have been arrested since demonstrations against settlements began in the village in 2009.
WAFA reports: Israeli army continued on Sunday their blockade of the village of Hazma, northeast of Jerusalem, for the sixth consecutive day in a row, banning the entry and exit of local Palestinians from and into the village through its main entrance. Israeli forces blocked the entrance six days ago under the pretext that youths from the village continue to attack with stones Israeli vehicles passing nearby.
New Yorkers gathered on September 15 to listen to veteran Palestinian activist Bassem Tamimi speak about life under occupation, and the nonviolent resistance he helps lead against that occupation.