Batya Ungar-Sargon asked students not to protest Ruth Wisse at Bard because she’s a Holocaust survivor, giving her a pass for anti-Arab racism. The panel she did want the students to protest featured Ungar-Sargon and a black Jew, Shahanna McKinney-Baldon, who now seeks an apology for Ungar-Sargon’s error-laden account of the event.
Category Archives: Opinion
US Ambassador David Friedman blatantly lied to Congress when he said he would oppose Israel’s annexation of West Bank lands and support a Palestinian state. He should be impeached for those misrepresentations, as well as for helping to block the visit to Palestine of Congress members Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar.
Ramzy Baroud writes, “Of the dozens of Palestinian and Arab prisoners I interviewed in recent months for a soon-to-be-published volume on the history of the Palestinian prison experience, every single one of them underwent a prolonged process of torture during the initial interrogation, that often extended for months.”
Benjamin Netanyahu called off his idea for a snap Likud Party primary after Gideon Sa’ar, a rival, tweeted two words: “I’m ready.” That moment reveals Netanyahu’s essential political character: he operates out of fear and paranoia.
On a recent trip to South Africa Ramzy Baroud found many South Africans are always ready to take their solidarity with Palestine to a whole new level. However, there is a general feeling that decisive political moves can prove costly for the country.
It would be a mistake to assume the political deadlock in Israel is evidence of a ideological divide. The reality is that there is strong unity – over shared racist attitudes towards Palestinians.
Asaf Calderon writes, “Netanyahu’s carefully cultivated stagnation can only be disrupted by his removal. The change will not come from a Gantz administration, but by the end of the Netanyahu administration.”
Naim Mousa writes, “There are two candidates for prime minister, one incites violence against Arabs and constantly carries out racist policies, and the other does the exact same but is called Gantz.” Yet Palestinian voters have shown their growing power through the Joint List’s endorsement of Gantz to lead the government.
Devyn Springer reflects that as a Black person in the United States, Palestinian cynicism towards Israeli elections feels all too familiar. “So-called important national elections seem to always be at the expense of my community’s existing oppression,” Springer writes.
What’s clear from Israel’s election is that the country has moved so far right, no one should expect any change in Israeli policy toward the occupation or Palestinian human rights, no matter who wins. And because Israeli policy is driving the U.S.’s deep partisan divide toward Israel, that will only deepen, James Zogby writes.
While Israel wants the world to see Iran behind every conflict and want to see it ostracized and isolated, they may not want Iran defeated because that would eliminate the special role Israel plays for the United States.
Layla Kaiksow and Reema AbuShaheen explain no amount of investment dollars can change the painful Israeli-made facts on the ground for Palestinian manufacturers and entrepreneurs. “Economic development without statehood has gotten us to this point, and that point is nowhere.”
Robert Cohen writes, with the global climate emergency upon us, “Zionism is one of many obsolete ideologies which needs to be ditched if we’re to build a sustainable future for all of us. In contrast, Judaism itself, shorn of its Zionist overlay, has plenty to offer as we look for radically different ways to relate to each other and the planet.”
The recent Israeli election has been a win for the Zionist right-center. The Joint List which mostly represents Palestinians has endorsed Benny Gantz, but that stance divided the List. That’s understandable because a unity government headed by Gantz would back policies toward Palestinians that are not different from those of a Likud government.
Electoral politics, while a potential means for harm reduction, will not save Palestine.
Benjamin Netanyahu will continue as caretaker prime minister for several more weeks – until a new government is formed. If he stays true to form, there is plenty of mischief he can instigate in the meantime.
The Blue White party gave Israelis who used to vote left the option of voting Likud-light with the pretense of being centrist. Blue White is essentially a rightwing party. And there was only one winner in this election, and it’s the one that has always won: Zionism.
Haidar Eid says there is nothing for Palestinians to celebrate about the Israeli elections. “Only secular democracy under the rule of law and in which ALL citizens are treated equally regardless of ethnic and religious origin is what should be celebrated,” Eid writes. “Anything short of that is a recycling of 19th century ethnic nationalism disguised in slogans that mean absolutely nothing to us Palestinians.”
The last decade in Israeli politics was all Netanyahu, all the time. The Israeli left twisted itself into a pretzel trying to get rid of Netanyahu and forgot about trying to end apartheid. Now it looks like the great hate monger is gone and the issues that matter may matter again.
Most of the world might hate Donald Trump, but in some places, based largely on his policies, there is hope and even admiration. Political scientist Monti Datta says the data shows Trump is more popular than Barack Obama among people in authoritarian nations, and the one place in the world where Trump’s policies seem to be enjoying the most public support is Israel.
The Israeli election challenges Americans to recognize what “Jewish democracy” has produced: a rightwing society in which all the politicking has been on the far right, and even the center-left Blue White calls for expanding the illegal occupation and pounding Gaza. Palestinian parties are a sign of real democracy, but leading Jewish parties want nothing to do with them.
After the Israeli election, there will be no end to occupation, no two-state solution. Israeli politics have moved so far to the right, that it is hard to understand why the US media continues to refer to Netanyahu’s opposition as a “center-left” coalition. American liberals have themselves to blame, for their passive opposition to expansive settlements and apartheid.
Israel was responsible for a 2018 effort to spy on cell phones near the White House, Politico reports. The espionage reminds us that Israel is not a good American ally. It routinely denies entry to American citizens, it murdered American peace activist Rachel Corrie with a bulldozer, and in 1967 it killed 34 American sailors in an attack on the USS Liberty while it was in international waters.
Benjamin Netanyahu’s plan to annex the Jordan Valley has simply made obvious what Palestinians have known for generations: Israel is uninterested in affording them their right to self-determination.
Suheir Abu Oksa Daoud says Israel’s repeat national elections grants the Palestinian leadership a golden opportunity to seek lessons from last April’s results where they dropped four seats and lost their standing as the third-largest party in the legislature.