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Liberal Zionists support Scarlett Johansson– and settlements. Why?

Philip Weiss on

Scarlett Johansson is getting some backup for representing SodaStream, a product made in a Jewish colony in the occupied Palestinian territories, and not just from rightwingers. Liberal Zionists have begun to voice their support, or stifle their criticism, in what is becoming a test of the all-new two state solution as envisioned by John Kerry. Above, liberal Democrat NY City Comptroller Scott Stringer who praised Johansson over the weekend.

Warped politics: Robert Gates says Israel is ‘ungrateful,’ but Obama will still veto Palestine UN bid

Alex Kane on

Jeffrey Goldberg’s latest column in Bloomberg (which Paul Mutter covered here) shows exactly how the Israel lobby has warped the U.S. political system. The lobby has such a stranglehold on U.S. policy towards Israel that a Secretary of Defense’s distaste for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu means nothing to the Obama administration’s polices on Israel. Goldberg […]

West Bank village under siege faces live-ammo, arrests and concussion grenades at nonviolent demo

Alex Kane on

The West Bank village of Beit Ommar has had a tough August, withstanding frequent Israeli military raids that see soldiers shoot tear-gas into residential areas and arrest Palestinian minors. Last Saturday, the month got even tougher for activists resisting illegal Israeli settlements and land confiscation. The Israeli military repressed the Beit Ommar popular committee’s most […]

Will the Palestinian Authority collide with popular resistance in September?

Alex Kane on

The Palestinian Authority’s (PA) bid for United Nations recognition of a Palestinian state remains on track, despite heavy pressure from the U.S. and Israel. But what has received scant attention is the possibility that the September bid may also result in a collision between popular, grassroots Palestinian resistance to the Israeli occupation and the PA’s […]

IDF and Ros-Lehtinen share goal: kill any chance for Palestinian state

Alex Kane on

An important report in today’s Haaretz by Akiva Eldar [picked up earlier today here by Matthew Taylor] further confirms the Israeli government’s intention to illegally annex strategic parts of the West Bank. Combined with the push by a top House Republican to codify into law President George W. Bush’s 2004 letter to then-Israeli Prime Minister […]

Activists from across Europe gather to build the campaign against Agrexco

Stephanie Westbrook on

This past weekend in the Montpellier, France, over 100 activists from 9 countries gathered for the first ever European Forum Against Agrexco. Delegates from Italy, UK, Switzerland, Belgium, Netherlands, Spain, Germany and Palestine joined the French organizers for two full days of workshops aimed at strengthening the boycott campaign against the Israeli agricultural export giant. […]

U.S. Treasury says: There’s nothing to see on tax-exempt support for illegal settlements

Alex Kane on

Investigative journalist and author Grant Smith‘s “Israel Lobby Archive” project gets a response from a Freedom of Information Act request filed in 2007, which asked for access to internal Treasury Department records on programs to stop or investigate charitable funds going to illegal Israeli settlements. (Read the Institute for Research: Middle East Policy statement on […]

‘Progressive Zionist’ group in U.S. calls for settlement boycott (while J Street continues to refuse to)

Alex Kane on

The liberal Zionist organization Meretz USA is calling on American Jews and Israelis to boycott West Bank settlements. While distancing itself from the Palestinian-led boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement, the statement represents a significant stand among left-leaning American Zionist groups who profess their belief in the two-state solution. Even more significant is the fact […]

In Ajami and Mas’ha, evidence of the continuing Nakba

Alex Kane on

Sami Abushhadeh discusses Jaffa. (Video: Alex Kane) Ramallah, West Bank–The Palestinian catastrophe, the Nakba of 1948, never really ended. What has happened since then, as Yehouda Shenhav, an Israeli sociologist and the author of Bounded by the Green Line, puts it, is a “continuation of the [1948] war by other means.” There are continuous effort […]

An Israeli’s Wiki-piphany

Philip Weiss on

WikiLeaks keep resonating. My friend David Bromwich writes: Here, an Israeli liberal centrist, after a small step in anti-colonial self- criticism, swings back to self-justification. All it took was the Wikileaks cables saying what everyone in Israel already knew: that Iran is dangerous. On November 18, the Haaretz columnist Ari Shavit published a column asserting […]

Ex-CIA official: Obama’s only peace process is to ‘hope for a miracle’

Adam Horowitz on

Robert Grenier, CIA’s chief of station in Islamabad, Pakistan, from 1999 to 2002 and director of the CIA’s counter-terrorism center, writes in disbelief at the current Obama administration strategy with the peace process (which he considers long dead). He comments on the Al Jazeera English website about the rumored bundle of incentives the White House […]

‘We are not in Israel’: Close encounters at the entrance to the Nokdim Settlement

Stephanie Westbrook on

Palestinian man with the handful of olives left on his trees. A Palestinian family living in Bethlehem but originally from the village of Jeb al Theeb contacted our group of volunteers asking for help in harvesting olives on their land adjacent to the settlement of Nokdim, home to Israeli FM Avigdor Lieberman. For the past […]

A deal on settlements: are we being played?

Léa Park on

You’re fed up with Israel’s settlement policy. You’ve read about Obama’s offer to give Israel the moon for a three month moratorium that excludes East Jerusalem, and you’re furious. On the other hand, you might be someone who could care less about settlements. Your chief concern is Israel’s security and you believe that any daylight […]

The calm strength of a Palestinian woman

Stephanie Westbrook on

Umm Khaled being followed by the settler. Umm Khaled, at first glance, is a Palestinian woman like many others: black clothing drapes over her body and head, her face marked by the years making her look older than she probably is. Yet this woman, who according to Western stereotypes should be ignorant and submissive in […]

The Israeli military left it to settlers to monitor Palestinian farmers during the olive harvest

Stephanie Westbrook on

Avigdor Lieberman’s home settlement of Nokdim. Jeb al Theeb, a small West Bank village south of Bethlehem, is under constant threat by the illegal Israeli settlements surrounding it. The small house we called home for a month had a view of the so-called Lieberman Road, which connects Jerusalem with the settlement of Nokdim, where Israeli […]

Video disproves settler hasbara and demonstrates how the settlements expand through intimidation

Adam Horowitz on

Ma’an news is reporting on the video above which disproves a widespread report quoting Israeli settlers that Palestinian farmers and Israeli leftists have been destroying Palestinians olive trees in an attempt to frame the settlers. Ma’an reports: Ynet news and Arutz Sheva, two Israeli media outlets, reported Sunday that “leftists” and “foreign anarchists” were caught […]

‘I am strong. We resist’: An interview in the village of Jeb al Theeb

Stephanie Westbrook on

Sitting in one of the houses of Jeb al Theeb, a small village south of Bethlehem, a Palestinian woman describes the living conditions. She is a teacher but in the darkness it is difficult to determine her age. Her home, just as the entire village, is without electricity. The only light that arrives comes from […]

Siegman and Walt both doubtful

Philip Weiss on

Henry Siegman is cynical (at the National Interest) about Obama’s concessions to Netanyahu. Note Siegman’s blistering tone. Note the frank description of Palestinian rightlessness (emphasis mine). Siegman’s piece highlights the amazing fact that East Jerusalem is free for Netanyahu’s picking:

NYT implies Muslims are the hostile ‘other’

James North on

The New York Times is at it again.  In an article about President Obama’s mild criticism of Israel’s plans to build more settlements in occupied Palestine, the newspaper said: Despite their efforts to build mutual trust, Mr. Obama and Mr. Netanyahu seem to keep talking past each other. On Tuesday, they were worlds apart in […]