SELECTED HATRED OF THE JEWS

It is not us, the BDS supporters, who are anti-Semitic, but the supporters of the Zionist occupation of Palestine, after all, they are harming the Jewish citizens worldwide.

 

Selected hatred of the Jews

By Evelyn Hecht-Galinski

 

I would never have thought it possible to experience such targeted campaigns against Jews in Germany. What is currently happening in this country fatal reminiscent of bygone times. Has not there ever been the extermination of Jews in Germany by the state and the media? Existence was destroyed, all this is repeated, fortunately not physically, but only mentally. Can Jews, who are committed to the observance of international law in the “Jewish State” and the non-violent BDS movement, still feel secure in Germany? They are still not threatened with the loss of their lives, but their economic existence and their vested right to freedom of expression are threatened. How long have I been writing about the loss of freedom of expression when it comes to criticizing Israeli politics. A hypocrite than in Germany can not be a policy when it comes to the concerns of the “Jewish state”. It is not the Jews who campaign for the freedom of Palestine or BDS that should be isolated internationally, but the Jewish occupying regime.

 

Jews become the fair game of the rulers

 

While Muslims and the “wrong” Jews have now become the fair game of the rulers, the Jews, who despise international law and human rights, are courted with benevolence. By what right do the factions of the parties, from CDU / CSU, FDP, SPD, to the Greens and the Left, condemn the BDS campaign and its supporters as anti-Semitic? Doubt is appropriate that they actually know what antisemitism is! They do not count themselves, although they defame critical Jews and deny them premises for events.

 

Right-wing extremist cliques and parties are currently uniting Europe-wide with the “Jewish state”, and this will be tolerated. Even if the “jumping hard-core Zionist” HM Broder meets with AfD or FPÖ party members, then this is registered, but remains without consequences. Obviously Broder’s Zionism did not work so well, after all he returned to Germany from the “Jewish State”, where he is one of many and meaningless, and perfects his role as Sayan. And after St.Pauli-Nachrichten and Spiegel he landed on Springer’s “Gnadenhof”. No wonder that Broder defames the “Jewish voice” as a “gang of anti-Semites”, a very poor hate polemic of a failed porn writer.

 

Jewish citizens are showered with a hatred of Jews

 

It is unbelievable that it is already possible again in Germany to overflow a club of committed Jewish citizens with a hatred of the Jews, to whom they want to refuse a prize from the highest official. If someone has earned the “Göttingen Peace Prize”, then it is this “Jewish Voice for Just Peace in Middle East – European Jews for a Just Peace Germany”. As a co-founder and no longer a member, I would like to express my solidarity with this important “Jewish voice”! (1) If critics of Israeli occupation policy are marginalized, then it is high time to denounce these German and European selectors, who today again spread the hatred of the Jews that we once had. Was it right-wing National Socialists then,

 

When the President of the Central Council of Jews, Schuster, with the Mayor of Göttingen Rolf-Georg-Köhler, the chairman of the FDP parliamentary group in the Göttingen city council, Felicitas Oldenburg, and the FDP member of parliament Konstantin Kuhle against Jews join forces and ally for the award ceremony on March 9, 2019, it is anti-Semitism.

 

The now more than 30,000 Jewish Israelis living alone in Berlin would be well advised to wonder if it was really the right decision to live in Germany, which now celebrates a new hatred of the Jews, and Jews who favor freedom of expression and the right of Palestinians enter into self-determination, have “released”. Does that not remind you of the “Jewish state” and its dealings with critics of racist apartheid and occupation politics? What is Israeli hostile about advocating for a free Palestine?

 

Hostile to the Jews are the supporters of the Zionist occupation of Palestine

 

Especially the BDS movement, founded as a voice of the Palestinian civil society, which was based on the model of the anti-apartheid movement in South Africa, is a role model for us all and should be supported by all of us.More and more prominent Jews support this BDS movement. And that scares the Zionist regime and the global Israel lobby. It is not us, the BDS supporters, who are anti-Semitic, but the supporters of the Zionist occupation of Palestine, after all, they are harming the Jewish citizens worldwide.

 

Let’s ask why alleged “Muslim” and “left” anti-Semitism is repeatedly condemned, even though it is clearly positioned as anti-Zionism and Israel criticism. If Muslims are today’s Jews and are showered with hatred and xenophobia, that’s just a way to cover up the crimes of the “Jewish state.”

 

If you look at the media, for months now we have been dealing with targeted campaigns against alleged anti-Semitism that has nothing to do with reality. In progress is a propaganda wave, led by the scientifically sophisticated Hasbara the Israelization of Germany and Judaisierung Palestine operates. And with the help of “Christian-Zionist” allies. The murderous crimes during the Gaza demonstrations, the many child murders, house demolitions and the constant land grabbing do not come to the light of the German public, which in turn is duped with the constant repetition of the mantra of the actually no longer realizable “two-state solution”, a long-written illusion.

 

Finally “tacheles” talk!

 

It must finally be “tacheles” talked about the true conditions in the “Jewish state”. In addition to settlement construction, discrimination and exclusion of Muslims / Palestinians and Christians, Israel can no longer be seen as a democracy, even if in this country is repeatedly raved by a “Christian-Jewish community of values”. What are these values? Also in Germany exclusion of “false Jews” who dare to oppose the illegal occupation of Palestine? Against Muslims and Islam, who do not fit into this “community of values” and want to exclude them? Do not you have to be ashamed to belong to this “community of values”?

 

While the images of the enemy, Turkey and Russia, continue to be blown up, and Iran – which has not yet attacked any other country than Israel – is being lied to by US politicians and Israel lobbyists as “Holocaust planners”, it is the “German fear” that always pulls. In the meantime we should be more worried about the “german hate propaganda”.

 

“Yellow vests” defamed as anti-Semites

 

Now even the “yellow vests” in France are being defamed as anti-Semites.Because the right-wing provocateur Alain Finkielkraut was called a “dirty Zionist”? Was it not he who had warned against the consequences of mass immigration in a more controversial essay entitled “The Unfortunate Identity” published in 2013 and the inclination of the left to deny anti-Semitism in immigrant youth. He has long been known for his fervent love of Israel. Now the judiciary and France are very excited that the “Immortal of the Academie Francaise”, who had come so “by accident” into a yellow-veined demonstration, was not received there with sympathy.

 

There is nothing more effective than working with anti-Semitism as a battle concept! Anti-Semitism and the Holocaust are the stimulus words that use instrumentalization to silence those who are not “state-compliant”. This will soon hit critical writers, intellectuals and critics. This French development is more than worrying. Marine Le Pen, leader of the Rassemblement National, also finds the verbal attacks on Finkielkraut “shocking” and suspects an infiltration of the yellow-west demonstrations of “anti-Semitic extreme leftists”. Here again we have to deal with the right and Zionist complicity, which has a firm grip on Europe. Instead of discussing the yellow vests and the provocations of Finkielkraut, the problems should finally be on the table,

 

If politics consists only of enemy images and distraction maneuvers

 

Why do not we learn about the supplementary agreements with France that Merkel and Macron have signed in Aachen? All these distraction maneuvers are only intended to mask the problems and upgrades. If politics consists only of foes, distractions, and inequalities, then we will soon have to prepare ourselves for even rougher times, and that will be really dangerous for democracy. (4)

 

As long as the democratic minimum demands on the “Jewish state” are not fulfilled, one can not recognize the “existence” of this state without defined borders. Only in the 1967 borders does Israel have a right to exist.

 

As long as there is this selected new hatred of Jews in Germany, politicians who exercise it are by no means eligible. In addition, we have to protest again and again if we want to deny us freedom of expression, a fundamental right of the constitution. It’s not us who are on the wrong side, but those who make that selection, and you can not repeat that often enough for it to be internalized.

 

Not in our name!

 

We are not anti-Semites, but the “Jews haters and Muslim haters” of the “right” kind who support the “Jewish state” and its policies that violate human rights and international law. We say: Not in our name!

 

 

footnotes:

 

(1) https://www.juedische-stimme.de/2019/02/17/hetz-pamphlet-der-goettinger-rechtsanwaeltin-f-oldenburg-erwiderung/

(2) https://www.welt.de/politik/ausland/article188980051/Alain-Finkielkraut-zu-Antisemitismus-Das-the-Rhetorik-der-Islamisten.html

(3) https://www.faz.net/aktuell/feuilleton/debatten/ein-jude-in-der-akademie-alain-finkielkraut-veraergert-die-franzoesische-linke-14037770.html

(4) https://www.n-tv.de/politik/Paris-und-Berlin-stimmen-Waffenexporte-ab-article20860302.html

 

DON’T EVEN THINK OF MAKING MY HOUSE YOUR HOME!

Heartbreaking. “Get out of my house!” Palestinian woman after being expelled from her home by Israeli settlers in the Old City in occupied Jerusalem.

THE REAL ‘OPERATION PROTECTIVE SHIELD’

Palestinians in Hebron are taking new steps for their community’s safety under constant settler attacks.

APARTHEID CAUGHT ON VIDEO

A trip down Israel’s new Apartheid Road

Last month, Israel opened what has been dubbed by locals and activists as the ‘Apartheid Road’. The four-lane highway features two separate roads divided by a concrete wall – one for Israeli settlers and the other for Palestinians.While the Israeli lane allows settlers quick and easy access to the center of Jerusalem, the Palestinian lane is designed to separate Palestinians off through an underpass, diverging to different areas of the West Bank. Despite Israeli claims that the road “eases traffic congestion” for both Palestinians and Israelis, locals maintain that it is just another step by authorities to further divide the occupied Palestinian territory.

Video by: Yumna Patel

Saleh Zghari

Ahmad al-Bazz

 

Source

THE BLINDNESS OF ZIONISM

While “alleged” anti-Semitism is becoming more and more exaggerated in the media, and anti-Semitism officials will soon be sitting in every town hall, but in fact the racist attacks against Muslims are on the rise.

Not seeing everything through the “Jewish-Christian” glasses

By Evelyn Hecht-Galinski

 

It is scary that the German government and politics are always happy to seek human rights, but in fact has long ago stepped into the bin. The demonization of Putin, Erdogan, Maduro are special examples of the political and media power of the rushing misinformation. While spiritual arsonists continue to focus on the media and try to emphasize the transatlantic friendship, the majority of German citizens have long since developed in a different direction. They now distrust the US more than China (!), A country that also violates human rights. Dissidents sit in prisons, and criticism is fiercely opposed. Turkey has rightly accused China of operating concentration camps for the Uyghur Muslim minority and accusing it of it is eradicating religion and culture. The “Jewish state” in Palestine does not try anything else. As an occupying power, the “Jewish State” also runs the Gaza concentration camp and carries out genocide and reprisals against Palestinians. Week after week, Palestinians are brutally murdered by the Israeli authorities in an effort to flee this confinement.

 

Egypt, which holds more than 60,000 political prisoners in inhumane prisons, is praised by Chancellor Merkel and German politicians and industrialists, as well as the Egyptian “leader” al-Sisi. Everything is done to keep these countries happy, so that German industry and its export flourish.

 

To disrespect disrespect for Muslims living here

 

What has become of German politics? If the Commissioner for Migration, Refugees and Integration, Widmann-Mauz, calls for “respect for the way we live” and strives for the “Judeo-Christian tradition that has marked the value of humanism”, then that is particularly disrespectful not to outbid the Muslims living here.

 

What does she want to achieve with it? That migrants feel marginalized and are told how to recover from the “German nature”? What has this “Jewish-Christian” tradition brought us? An exaltation of this culture, which always turns into “Un-culture”, as we are currently experiencing. So when the cultures collide and are not taken as they are then a bang will come.

 

Whenever we read one-sidedly about the “negative sides of Islam”, about so-called honor killings, women’s oppression and medieval structures, and the fear of “Islamist terrorism” is constantly raised, an Islam incitement is deliberately fostered. Why was the only Muslim kindergarten closed? With flimsy arguments that the bearer of the day-care center, the mosque association Arab Nile-Rhine, which bears the Mainz Al-Nur Kindergarten “represents the contents of the Muslim Brotherhood and Salafism and thus no longer stands on the ground of the Basic Law? Counter question: Are Jewish day-care centers still on the ground of the Basic Law, if they represent contents of the “Jewish state”, which clearly violates international law and human rights? Clear double standards and discrimination!

 

Defamatory intimidation symbiosis

 

While “alleged” anti-Semitism is becoming more and more exaggerated in the media, and anti-Semitism officials will soon be sitting in every town hall, but in fact the racist attacks against Muslims are on the rise, the post of racism officer is still vacant.

 

However, this does not seem to interest politics any further, as it tries with all its might, together with the Israel lobby, to focus exclusively on the allegedly rising anti-Semitism, which in reality has not risen, but with targeted actions in the foreground is written. Every day, new articles and TV programs appear that outdo each other in pointing out the increase.What does that suggest? First of all the danger of “Muslim immigration” and secondly the “anti-Semitic” of any criticism of Israel. It’s amazing how the defamation of anti-Zionism to anti-Semitism has become a bullying symbiosis. New formulas for allegations are used to point out the danger.While right-wing extremist hordes are now mobbing villages and towns and there are AfD tendencies that clearly fish in anti-Semitic waters, while the AfD, as a party, quite explicitly affirms that it is on the side of the Jews and of Israel. I can only warn again and again to vote for this party, even if the understandable disenchantment with politics over the policies of other parties increases more and more, which I fully understand, I feel the same way.

 

The Israeli lobby’s policy is only to defame Israel critics in public life with massive campaigns. They do not shy away from questionable means, and that actually connects them again with the right-wing extremist policy of the “Jewish state”.

 

Something is wrong in Germany

 

Meanwhile, the respected historian and anti-Semitism researcher Benz, who taught at the Technical University of Berlin until 2011, is denigrated because he refuses to confirm an increase in anti-Semitism and criticized the new reporting office for anti-Semitism. Benz is right when he criticized this “RIAS” position as something denunciatory, after all, anti-Semite is the gravest reproach in Germany. Really? Is this term meanwhile not unbelievably “devalued” by the inflationary use? If Jewish citizens are made anti-Semites simply because they have the decency to criticize the “Jewish state” for their disempowering occupation and apartheid policies, and Jews in Germany are banned from performing, then something goes wrong in Germany.

 

If only those Jews are being courted who are in solidarity with Israeli politics, then we have reached a point that reminds us of a time in Germany that has already caused a mischief. If Jews are again turned outsiders by philosemitic politicians and representatives of the Israel lobby today, then this is a crime that can not be made good again. No, it is certainly not anti-Semitism to criticize the “Jewish state” and demand an end to the occupation or support the BDS movement. If Jewish citizens take over their responsibility for Palestine, while German politicians ignore it and prefer to ally with the “Jewish state”, then something is not right in Germany.

 

BDS is not directed against Jews

 

The US-Professor Judith Butler, a model Jewish fighter for the freedom of Palestine, writes in the newly published collection “New Anti-Semitism”, Suhrkamp-Verlag, she sees the BDS campaign “as a new solidarity alliance for more social justice, which calls for Solidarity with the Palestinian national movement through BDS (Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions) and push the anti-racist struggle forward with the argument: “The boycott is not directed against Jews, it does not target Israeli citizens. It targets Israeli institutions that have the power to put pressure on the government to end its reprehensible laws and policies regarding Palestine. “

 

So much for the recurring fake argument “do not buy from the Jew”.

 

Only 74 years after the liberation and the end of the war, the enemy image of Russia is being rebuilt. What led to sanctions and protests in the case of the Crimea homecoming after a correctly expired referendum (!) Does not detract from the friendship with the Jewish occupiers. For decades, they have been allowed to commit unpunished, illegal annexations, and human rights abuses of the worst kind, making the living conditions of the Palestinians increasingly unbearable, building walls and checkpoints to achieve the final solution of a Judaized Palestine. Therefore, they are considered and rewarded with ever-expanding cooperation.

 

We do not need US bases, nuclear weapons and blackmail

 

What else needs to happen until German politics wakes up and thinks?However, we seem further away than ever before, more and more the importance of transatlantic friendship is sought, which is supposed to be so important for our protection. What protection and from whom? We should all ask ourselves this question if the German government, in accordance with Trump’s orders, but against the interests of its population, increases the military expenditure more and more, supported by German government policy. The German government is being blackmailed by US Ambassador Grenell, who, against every diplomatic practice, is making unspeakable demands for the end of Nordstream 2 or the Iran-EU agreement. It is basically just about the “America first” with the blackmail attempt, to sell overpriced US LPG to Germany and Europe. We need both agreements urgently, but no US bases, nuclear weapons and blackmail that harm the German economy.

 

What is this for a German foreign policy, which has fully recognized in the footsteps of Trump and his Venezuela regime change attempt, the self-proclaimed “interim president” and thus, according to a report of the scientific service of the Bundestag a questionable interference “Venezuela’s internal affairs”, which raises doubts about international legitimacy. (1)

 

Finally, when Federal President Steinmeier finds “clear” words on Venezuela’s situation as part of his trip to South America – because the country is “after years of autocracy and mismanagement on the edge of the abyss”. Steinmeier called for free presidential elections, because only a new president “on a credible, legitimate basis” could give the people of Venezuela a future. What is this German interference and what gives him the legitimacy to express himself? Has Federal President Steinmeier ever advocated free and democratic elections in illegally occupied Palestine or criticized an Israeli prime minister?

 

Responsibility for Palestine and the Palestinian people

 

In fact, Chancellor Merkel never intervenes in the “internal affairs” of the “Jewish state,” even though these are not “inner” ones, but affect us as well, which, out of historical responsibility, we have a responsibility for Palestine and the Palestinian people, always is forgotten again, but until Palestine is free.

 

Meanwhile, it has become “normal” that the Netanyahu regime interferes in internal affairs of German politics and culture. The fact that he tries not only as a prime minister, but also as a war, culture and foreign minister in one person to interfere and to take more and more influence and pressure, may not be tolerated. We have experienced this influence and this wealth of power in the last ten years. Will we soon see Israeliization in Germany, which will increase again? Netanyahu tries to do his Judaisierung in Germany. He, who tramples on the rights of the Palestinians, has also scored points with the AfD, which is quite openly living out its hatred of Islam and thus finds itself in good company with the far-right politics of the “Jewish state”. In addition, he openly tries to wedge the European partners if he provocatively does not come to Munich for the so-called security conference, but flies to Warsaw to attend the more than controversial Warsaw Anti-Iran Conference. Not that we regret his absence in Munich, he sends high-ranking representatives. After all, when it comes to war and weapons sold as “security”, the “Jewish state” is always there. But it shows how Netanyahu is trying to band together with Iran-hostile and Islam-hating states to push a wedge into European politics, much like his friend Trump did. but flies to Warsaw to attend the more than controversial Warsaw Anti-Iran Conference. Not that we regret his absence in Munich, he sends high-ranking representatives. After all, when it comes to war and weapons sold as “security”, the “Jewish state” is always there. But it shows how Netanyahu is trying to band together with Iran-hostile and Islam-hating states to push a wedge into European politics, much like his friend Trump did. but flies to Warsaw to attend the more than controversial Warsaw Anti-Iran Conference. Not that we regret his absence in Munich, he sends high-ranking representatives. After all, when it comes to war and weapons sold as “security”, the “Jewish state” is always there. But it shows how Netanyahu is trying to band together with Iran-hostile and Islam-hating states to push a wedge into European politics, much like his friend Trump did.

 

Respect for human rights instead of unchecked policy of indecent recklessness

 

So it brings us back to the topic, the respect that German politicians demand of Muslims, they should also prove the Muslims in Germany and not always see everything only through the “Jewish-Christian” glasses. This requires the respect for human rights, which are increasingly losing themselves in an unrestrained policy of indecent recklessness, following the example of the USA and Israel.

 

 

footnotes:

 

(1) https://www.faz.net/aktuell/politik/ausland/bundestags-gutachten-aeussert-bedenken-an-guaido-anerkennung-16032440.html#void

 

 

In the Neue Rheinische Zeitung (NRhZ) published in issue 692 dated 13.02.2019 under http://www.nrhz.de/flyer/beitrag.php?id=25619

A SCREAM FOR THE PALESTINIAN DREAM

I dream someday that our living nightmare will end

I Dream ……

By Mazin Qumsiyeh, PhD

I dream someday that our living nightmare will end. Images like a sister
crying over the body of her 14 year old brother Hasan Shalabi who was shot
in the heart simply for wanting to have a life. The video of the same kid
so full of life saying he dreams of getting a job to help his family of
nine in Gaza haunt me. He is just a kid and I cannot imagine the pain of
his family. I imagine someday I will not hear about destruction of the
Amazon rain forest or bleeching of coral reefs or another “trophy hunt” or
of a girl murdered (like Palestinian Swar murdered by cruel men for “honor”
or the 5 year old raped and murderedin India). I dream of India going back
to its anti-colonial days instead of buying billions in weapons it does not
need from Israel (a colonial state). I dream of days like when my
grandfather’s friend in school was a Jewish student (i.e. I dream of the
end of apartheid and all of us living together in one country in friendship
as before).

I dream of days when the world takes serious action to stop the ongoing
global environmental nakba (catastrophe) and stop marching towards a
nuclear holocaust. I dream of days when no child goes hungry (now 1/5th of
world children do) or days when the world stood up against rathewr than
cajored dictators like those ruling in Arabia. I dream of a future where
westerny governmenents do not topple democraticly elected governments in
natural resource rich areas to install puppets of neo-colonialism
(Mousaddaq in Iran in 1950s, Chile in Sept 11, 1973, Venezuela this year).
I dream of may things. But I am also realistic and thus work hard to change
what I can: give me the courage to change the things I can, patience for
those I can’t, and wisdom to know the difference.

I teach a course in biodiversity at Birzeit University for master students
in environmental biology. I teach others (formal and informal) of all ages
in logical thinking, in research methodologies, in human rights etc. I try
to convince myself that if these young students (some in high school or
younger) can and do respect themselves, respect others, and respect nature,
then there is hope for humanity. The young people always give me hope. I
had a dream last night where there are a gathering of white haired
Palestinian politicians (Mahmoud Abbas, Azzam Al-Ahmad, etc) with similar
other politicians (Modi, Netanyahu, Trump etc) but I was most worried about
two young children among them both with white hair who looked like
miniature of these politicians (copies, clones). I tried to approach them
but was shielded from them by the white-haired politicians.

Perhaps this is my biggest fear/nightmare: That some young people are
becoming clones of our political leadership and it is getting hard to reach
them. Bethlehem University is shut down basically because the student
council leaders (who happen to be Fatah members) want to prove themselves
ahead of upcoming student elections by opening files of practical training
fees applied three years ago. I hope this gets resolved soon and students
go back to classes. What encourages me and other volunteers who work even
seven days a week is that we do see things that need doing and do them and
no matter how modest these achievements are (see 2018 achievements here), we at lease preserve our sanity in this crazy world. But it is a bit
more than that, even on social media where I see many posts and opinions
without actions but the posts do precede actions. Knowledge is important
but we must keep pushing for actions.

So much for this Sunday “thinking out loud”. Now back to work: today I am
working on a grant proposal for peacemaking, preparing for talks to
internationals, working with a couple of brilliant highschool students,
museum administrative tasks, and answering emails. It is raining heavily –
otherwise I would have taken a hike…. Life/struggle goes on.

“We have 12 years to limit climate change catastrophe, warns UN,” The
Guardian

Capitalism Killed Our Climate Momentum, Not “Human Nature” By Naomi Klein

RAPPING UNDER FIRE

“I don’t fear the snipers’ shots.” This Palestinian rapper filmed this music video under live Israeli fire.

RESISTANCE THROUGH ART (WHITE RESISTANCE)

 Resistance through art, or as I like to call it “white resistance,” is where art arises as a form of struggle itself.

Resisting anything that is unjust needs a tool. My tool in jail was my pencil, my poetry and my feelings. With these I wrote and I drew.

 

“Palestinian in Israel.”(Illustration by Dareen Tatour)

 

Poet Dareen Tatour draws in jail: a journey between feelings, sensations and reality

There are many ways of expressing resistance to the occupation through art. For me art has become the only peaceful weapon available to express and transmit all of the ways in which I suffer to the world. Resistance through art, or as I like to call it “white resistance,” is where art arises as a form of struggle itself.

Artists in Palestine do not want to paint an image of resistance in their art, but aim as much as possible to make art a weapon through which they resist everything that is unjust, whether it is against the occupation, war, wrongheaded social norms and traditions, killings, violence or anything that is corrupt or contradicts humanitarian values.

My love for drawing only started when I was under house arrest. I started to draw my feelings while locked inside my room to release all the negative energy that was built up in my heart as a result of detention, especially because I was deprived of practicing my love of photographing outdoors in places I loved to visit. Therefore, drawing came to give me a positive push to keep me going, resisting and struggling, and to replace my passion for photography and no longer free use of my camera during this long period of time.

After I was sentenced to five months of jail and during my time at Damon prison, my need to write, and more than ever before, became a way to express my resistance against jail and the injustice I faced every day due to the imprisonment of my freedom. However, suddenly and with writing, I felt capable of drawing too and expressing all I saw and lived in this jail through simple drawings that transfer reality as it is, and the feelings I or other women prisoners lived.

The Israeli Prison Services ban us, Palestinian women prisoners that is, from using colors, paints, books and all drawing equipment, yet they allow them in criminal prisons. This ban and restriction was not an obstacle for us. Whoever wanted to draw and express her feelings in jail would do so with the minimum of available means.

The drawing equipment I used in jail was very simple. I illustrated with pens in three colors, blue, black and red, and a pencil that is the only available one in the section where I was assigned. It was secretly smuggled, used by all prisoners who wanted to use a pencil. In order to use it one would wait in turn and pre-reserve.

My eraser in jail was merely a small piece of black leather on the handle of a hair brush and my sharpener for the pencil was the cement ground of the prison’s yard; I would scratch the pencil to the ground until it became good for drawing. As for the drawing paper I used in jail, they were the paper of a regular lined book that I use for writing. Sometimes I would collect the cardboard covers of disposable aluminum plates, used for special meals given to prisoners with diabetes or blood pressure diseases. These would only be available for me to draw on if the covers remained clean and unstained by food. I then gave these drawings to my prisoner friends to keep.

Today, after being released and having all drawing equipment available, I still feel that the drawings I drew in jail had more meaning and are different than any other drawing I do while free at home. My drawings from jail are very simple. To the observer’s eye they may seem to lack mastering and the real technique of drawing, however, they came from a suffering heart, deprivation and a lack of equipment and means. Thus they have a big place in my heart. Each drawing I drew in jail, even if it was simple and merely some momentary scribbles, has a meaning that I lived in jail and a visualized message about something happening that only women prisoners themselves know. These are some of my drawings from jail, each has a story.

“Section 61 at the Damon prison.” Picture no.1 (Illustration by Dareen Tatour.)

Picture no. 1: As soon as I arrived into jail, all of my belongings were confiscated. I was even banned from bringing in my own clothes. The jailer cuffed my hands and shackled my legs. When I objected and asked her why, she said because I am a security prisoner and I am a threat to the security of the state and jailers. After arriving into section 61 of the Damon prison I saw two cells: cell number 7 and cell number 8, everything fenced, locked and surrounded with walls, even windows were sealed with iron and fenced from every side.

“Challenge.” Picture no.2 (Illustration by Dareen Tatour.)

Picture no. 2:  During the times where I would sit in my cell empty of all that is lively, hopeful and colorful, I would look at its corners and see gray walls and beds, and in front of me. Wherever my eyes would look, and because of how small this cell is, I would see the closed gray door. Suddenly, I felt a desperate need for my eyes to see colors, to see a different color than the dominant gray in this cell. I wished that I had paint to color that door with other colors full of life and optimism or colors that tell the reality of feelings that moved inside me and the seven prisoners with me. Nevertheless, my wishes would not get me anything. I opened my book and drew the door of the cell as it is. Then I started to color it in with the colors I had available in accordance with my feelings and sensations.

Red, was for the feelings of love and longing that I had for my friend at that moment; black was for the darkness of the cell and the noise I lived all the time with the prisoners and the lack of privacy; and blue symbolized the occupation that always disturbs the clarity of our lives for us Palestinians. The state of longing produced inhibitions, contradictions, pain, hope and agony that I found here, and released through the colors engraved in the drawings.

“An imprisoned sea.”Picture no.3 (Illustration by Dareen Tatour.)

Picture no. 3: There’s a story about the sea in jail. I had missed the sea a lot when I drew this drawing but there is something deeper that controlled my feelings and was tougher on me than longing itself. When I thought of the sea, here, I saw women prisoners and their longing to see this sea! Talking about the sea anywhere in the world is something normal but talking about it in jail and in Palestine, and specifically with Palestinian women prisoners, had a certain pain. All the women prisoners I was with had not seen the sea in their lifetimes but through pictures due to checkpoints, the separation wall and the occupation that prevents Palestinians in the West Bank from visiting the coastal area. Many were deprived of permits that could have helped them cross these checkpoints.

Generations have grown up and are still growing up in Palestine and have never gone to the sea and do not know the real meaning of the sea, its contours, or the feeling one has when swimming.

“Nostalgia.” Picture no.4 (Illustration by Dareen Tatour.)

I did not have the color green with me in jail which kept me from finishing the Palestinian flag on the boat’s sail in the drawing. I felt banning color pencils was similar to the confiscation of Palestinian rights to see the sea. Despite the fact that both of these requests are humanitarian and very simpleindeed the simplest of human rights—yet banning them causes deep pain and leaves an indelible effect in the heart.

Picture no. 4: Some of the darkest feelings that overtook my heart while in jail came from the longing for a friend.  I felt loneliness, suffering, love, and pain. I called out for those my heart missed without anyone hearing so much as an echo. That is when I wanted to shout and yell her name, but it was of no use. My voice could not reach her from behind the iron door. So I imagined a conversation transmitted by our hearts. But in reality any sound I made was buried inside of my cell. Love was buried; the heart was bound and the call was only received by the walls of this prison.

Pictures no. 5 and 6: These images are of the beds in the cell. Constructed of iron and topped by a very thin mattress, sleeping on them was like sleeping on a sheet of tinplate. The uncomfortable mattress caused me back pain. There was nothing in the cell but these beds and gray lockers. This was the only furniture available for women prisoners.

“The jail’s bed.” Picture no.5 (Illustration by Dareen Tatour.)

“The jail’s bed.” Picture no.6 (Illustration by Dareen Tatour)

Picture no.7: That iron door is the harshest scene I have seen in my life, escorting me at all time and through the opening where I could always see the sky in a square. A huge iron door, I often had the feeling to and wished that I could break that door, or open it and leave whenever I wanted. What a hard feeling it is to be tied to place where the times to open and shut the door on you are controlled. At this specific moment when I made this drawing, I felt an urgent need to get out and breathe. I even wanted to shower whenever I felt the need to wash my body of the tiredness of thinking, with cold water, but also could not do that as shower rooms are also tied to certain times that I do not control. I went with imagination towards freedom. I wanted to put a hole in that door. I started drawing circles on it, yet, these holes suddenly appeared as extra restrictions. That door is a symbol for the ruggedness of the jailer and my inability as a prisoner. The only way for me to open that door was writing about it or draw it as open like it was in my imagination.

“Escape.” Picture no.7 (Illustration by Dareen Tatour)

Picture no.8: In the cell, lights are turned off at 11:00 p.m., and at this exact time rooms become quiet and silence begins after a day full of indescribable noise. That is the only time I would have a state of quietness that would help me write and read in jail, but my problem was that there was no light to help me read and write. The only available light came from a small opening in the door that beamed into my cell. I would sit on the ground by the door to use this, the only light entering the cell. Under this light I wrote my poems and drew some of these drawings.

Arabic: “Dareen Tatour, 8/18/18, Ramon prison.” “A spot of light.” Picture no.8 (Illustration by Dareen Tatour)

Arabic: “Dareen Tatour, 9/8/18, Ramon prison.” “Imprisonment of the pencil.” Picture no.9 (Illustration by Dareen Tatour)

Picture no.9: Being imprisoned only because of writing where my only crime was having used a pencil to write a poem, I came to see freedom of expression and democracy in Israel as a big lie; there is no such thing as the freedom of expression for us Palestinians. The pencil represents me, the pencil here is my imprisoned body. It is also the pencil that we as prisoners are banned from using; this ban itself is a symbol of the racism we face. Pens of all types are available in Israeli criminal prisoners but are banned for political prisons where only Palestinians are held. A state that imprison a poet because she wrote a poem and bans pencils in that prison, it is a racist not a democratic state.

To me, more writing and more drawing means more resistance and more struggle against the occupation and its acts against us Palestinians. More art means more holding onto the land, history and identity. It means more expression where injustice is rejected, and publicly saying “no” to occupation.

Those who have a talent live with a cause, and artists who have a cause in their art do not let it go no matter how expensive the price is and no matter how much forces beyond their control try to silence them. With censorship, artists back their causes even stronger and in additional means. Thus, in inaccessible places and where nobody can know what is happening in terms of human rights violations, comes the talent who will express what is hidden, comes art in jail to specifically send an image to the outside world and tell on and document these violations.

“Who is the terrorist.”(Illustration by Dareen Tatour)

Resisting anything that is unjust needs a tool. My tool in jail was my pencil, my poetry and my feelings. With these I wrote and I drew.

After I being imprisoned for three years for writing a poem against the occupation, I do not rule out that I could find myself in detention once again. This time perhaps for a drawing or a picture depicting the occupation, expressing resistance or my Palestinian identity and my home country. A drawing in which I criticize all of the occupation’s violations and its racism against us Palestinians–because everything here that has a Palestinian identity has become incitement and terrorism for the Israeli government–could be called a crime. A look could be called a crime. Using certain colored pencils could be called a crime.

After I was tried and convicted for a word and a thought, I wonder will I ever be locked up for a drawing too? I leave the answer here in two of the above drawings that I did while under house arrest. Maybe these will have an explanation of the reality I lived, am still living and will live in a state that only knows killing Palestinians, and fights everything that expresses them.

This article was translated from Arabic to English by Nina AbuFarha.

 

IN DEFENSE OF OUR MORAL DUTY

There is only one moral duty that concerns us all and for which it is necessary to defend the high good of freedom of expression.

 

There is only one moral duty

By Evelyn Hecht-Galinski

 

Time and again, when Holocaust survivors, such as the Israeli historian Saul Friedlander on the occasion of the anniversary for the victims of National Socialism, believe that “defending Israel’s right to exist … is a fundamental moral obligation” makes me stunned, and so on I am appalled by the one-sidedness of the historian and contemporary witnesses. (1) I find it simply absurd for Holocaust survivors, of all people, to defend a state that has lost all moral integrity through its decade-long occupation of Palestine and the constant onslaught of land. In fact Friedlander was lucky enough to find his home in 1948 in the “Jewish State”. Like many others, he has obviously never wondered what this “happiness” was! For he too, like many others, has repressed the fact that this “happiness” was created on the misfortune of the more than 750,000 Palestinians expelled from their ancestral home, homeless to this day. The ethnic cleansing of Palestine by Israel is progressing, because the Jewish occupiers want the land, but without their autochthonous Palestinian population.

Moral duty to comply with international law

As a historian to be taken seriously, Friedlander would have had to remember those dark, murderous chapters of his new homeland, which makes the Palestinian people the last forgotten victim of the Nazi barbarei. His speech to the Bundestag could have been a good opportunity to recall this sad fact and to enlighten the German elite there that Germany is historically in the “moral duty” to stand up for the Palestinian people.

Palestinians last “co-victims” of the Holocaust

Although Bundestag President Schäuble in his opening address unctuously reminded of the commandment to be a fellow human being and not to forget our responsibility, for him this responsibility does not apply to the Palestinians as the last “co-victims” of the Holocaust. Instead, Schäuble rummaged about the cheap, supposedly “newly immigrated anti-Semitism” from the prejudice drawer. Against this, I clearly take sides with the party: certainly it is not anti-Semitism when Muslims attack the “Jewish state” and its politics, but simply demanding the international law of Israel! Even the ever-diminishing Palestinian Christians demand compliance with international law.

New rights in Germany firmly on the side of the extreme right in the “Jewish state”

The fact that Friedländer in his speech attacked not only the extreme right but also the extreme left and lumped it is unbearable! After all, it is well known that the extreme right here in Germany, the AfD, is firmly on the side of the Jews and how the Israeli government vehemently rejects the establishment of a Palestinian state, and is therefore in complete harmony with the extreme right wing in the “Jewish state”, ie the Netanyahu government, as well as the majority of Israeli-Jewish citizens and the majority of Jewish organizations in the diaspora. On the other hand, a large part of the left has a conscience and is on the side of the oppressed Palestinians. It’s outrageous, and it’s not right, as Friedländer puts it, that it’s the “politically correct way of justifying their hatred,

Whenever the antisemitism leg is swung again and again

No, Mr. Friedlander, it is certainly not anti-Semitism when the “Jewish State” is attacked for its occupation and human rights violations, and more than shameful when the anti-Semitism leg is repeatedly swung to the defense of criticism.

Friedländer speech: example of Israel propaganda and art of distraction

Regrettably, the criticism is not obsessive enough because nothing has changed over the years but is getting worse and more brutal. And your speech, Mr. Friedlander, was a prime example of using the Jewish Project, the Hasbara Project, for worldwide Israeli propaganda to silence and denounce Israeli critics. And indeed, in this shabby way of stopping criticism, Israel is a master, and where could this scientific propaganda fall on more fertile ground than in Germany, the land of the former perpetrators. You, Mr. Friedlander, hit just the right nerve, they heartbreaking portrayed your really shattering and sad biography, in a quiet tone that rightly mesmerized all listeners.

The high standard of freedom of expression is called into question by the Israel lobby worldwide

While he pointed out that Germany and the majority of Germans today is a changed country that encourages him, he could be sure of the standing ovations of the assembled audience. Yes, the majority of Germans need praise and recognition, but even more absolution for the past. This game of praise and blame, between strokes and strokes makes them happy, especially when it comes from people like them or from the “Jewish state”. What bothers in this unity? The criticism of the “Jewish state”. Therefore, this criticism is immediately denigrated as anti-Semitic and stifled in the bud, in defiance of the well-known truth about the crimes of Israel and all democratic practices and the freedom of expression. This high commodity is being called into question by the Israel lobby worldwide, when it comes to Israel / Palestine. Your speech, Mr. Friedlander, was a prime example of this “art”, the art of distraction.

There is no right to exist for a state without borders and constitution

The shabby instrumentalization of the Holocaust, the uniqueness of this crime, smashes any discussion that even attempts to criticize the “Jewish state”. There is no right to exist for a state without borders and constitution, but only a right to exist for people, citizens, but in no case applies only to Jews, as is repeatedly propagated. The Palestinians, the indigenous peoples of Palestine, who are granted neither the same rights nor their legal right of return, nor their right to a homeland, are discriminated against with the help of the descendants of the victims and the perpetrators. It is frightening how former victims and perpetrators unite and act together in a friendly community. The critics, including Jews, and Muslims remain as a metaphor for anti-Semitism,

Apartheid streets for Jews only

While the new rights in Europe have more and more in common with the “Jewish state”, BDS supporters and critical leftists stand for the right to exist of a Palestinian state. 71 years after the founding of the state of Israel, it has still not been possible to found a Palestinian state. This wish, thanks to Jewish and “Judeo-Christian” supporters and helpers, is increasingly turning into a mirage, a fairy tale. While the settlers and the settlements in occupied Palestine rob more and more land, the apartheid streets “only for Jews”, walls and checkpoints more and more fragmented by Palestine, and Jerusalem is simply illegally seized as the eternal capital of a “Jewish state”, politics is silent this obvious wrong. In your speech, Mr. Friedlander, the Palestinians and Palestine did not occur.

Such a state has no right to exist

In fact, the question arises, does the “Jewish state” have a right to existence as it exists today and is built up? No, and I can only repeat it again and again, not like that. Despite everything, we must continue to work for the freedom of Palestine and the self-determination of its people, because only then is a peaceful future guaranteed.

In Germany there is again a prohibition of speech for Jews

Who, if not you, Mr. Friedlander, as a witness and Holocaust survivor, would have been able to use all your powers to achieve this goal. She, who forgave the Germans so generously and helped in 2002 to make the history of the Bertelsmann Group “Kosher”. But that today in Germany there is again a prohibition of speech for Jews, so you select “again” good “Jews and” bad “Jews, you miss studiously. (2)

Empathy for the suffering of the Palestinians

While Holocaust survivors like Hajo Meyer, the author of numerous books and fighters for a free Palestine, neither from the Bundestag nor from the official side ever found the deserved recognition, one now hopes only “good” Jews. Feeling empathy for the suffering of the Palestinians, Hajo Meyer was able to identify with Palestinian youth from his experience, making him an admirable contemporary witness who never ignored others’ sufferings. It is the creeping poison of the “new anti-Semitism” that makes Jews outcast again. Jews who dare to support the peaceful BDS campaign are being launched by philosemitic politicians and the media under the guidance of the “Jewish State” and its helpers (Sayanim worldwide). (3)

Mayor Becker: drunk with happiness when looking at the occupation state

Friedlander is correct in that Germany today became a country that exemplarily intensified its cooperation with the “Jewish State” – supported medially and politically by an unprecedented exaggeration of everything Jewish in Germany. There is a unique transfiguration in progress that must repel any “normal” Jewish citizen, as he is concerned in his embarrassment. Do Jewish citizens really want to be something “special” again, so they are considered “Kippa exotics”. In addition, when the multifunctional Mayor of Frankfurt, Becker, thinks that he is on the frontline of solidarity with the occupation state for a whole day running around in the “most Jewish city in Germany”, because he is downright drunk with happiness when he is in Israel and up the occupied Golan can look. Quite funny what fits this Becker everything: The Oxymoron crew + rule of law. I call this degenerate! (4)

When a religion depends on a piece of foreskin

Why, I ask, should it be anti-Semitic to argue that it does not have to be considered a bodily harm to cut off the penis’ foreskin just born to Jewish male babies? What justifies this ritual? Nowhere in the Torah (Old Testament) is this ritual required. It became a stone-carved dogma that can not be justified with anything. Time and again, it is demanded on all sides that Islam should be renewed, but in Judaism every question of this kind is stylized immediately to hatred of the Jews. We must not forget that not only in Reform Judaism, but also in the “Jewish State” more and more Jews do not let their boys be circumcised, yet observe other rules. Just as Jews burn themselves after death today, All rites should finally come to the table. If a religion depends on a piece of foreskin then there is not much to it. For me that also applies to the celibacy of Catholics, which in my opinion is unnatural and by no means “God-willing” but – as always comes to light – only abuse and pedophilia or according to Pope Francis nuns abuse by priests. (5)

If the religions do not succeed in renewing themselves and accepting the equal rights of women, there will be fewer and fewer believers in the future. Although I do not make much friends with these statements, I remain faithful, and religious rites are justified only as long as they do not interfere with fundamental rights. Everyone should believe what and to whom he wants, but please without compulsion and state.

Moral duty to denounce Israeli state terrorists

So if we see it as our moral duty to support the struggle for freedom of the Palestinian people and denounce occupation and oppression by Israeli state terrorists, then that is perfectly legitimate and in accordance with international law.

If we defend ourselves against the fact that the federal government is making more and more common cause with these state terrorists, then it is our moral duty to tackle it. We demand:

 

  • No youth exchange that infects our youth with the occupation poison,
  • no federal exchange of arms with Jewish “defense soldiers” defending this illegal occupation by all means.
  • No armor drones, cyber exchange, as well
  • no joint cabinet meetings.
  • No participation in the Songfestival ESC in Tel Aviv for white washing of the crew
  • No cultural exchange, but support from Israeli artists who refuse to be restricted in their work. Not the BDS support is anti-Semitic, but it is the new Jews haters who want to prohibit Jews the right to freedom of expression.
  • Not BDS, but the new rights in Europe, which, in cooperation with the “Jewish state terrorists”, are trying to defame the left and the Muslims as terrorists.

 

Defend the high good of freedom of expression!

There is only one moral duty that concerns us all and for which it is necessary to defend the high good of freedom of expression.

 

 

footnotes:

 

(1) https://www.bundestag.de/dokumente/textarchiv/2019/kw05-nachbericht-gedenkstunde/589230

(2) https://www.randomhouse.de/Buch/Bertelsmann-im-Dritten-Reich/C-Bertelsmann/e122519.rhd

(3) https://linkezeitung.de/2017/03/11/auschwitz-ueberlebender-hajo-meyer-ich-may-mich-mit-der-palaestinensischen-jugend-identifizieren/

(4) https://www.journal-frankfurt.de/journal_news/Panorama-2/Gespraech-mit-Uwe-Becker-Frankfurt-ist-die-juedischste-Stadt-Deutschlands-33474.html?newsletter_id=4135

(5) https://www.waz.de/politik/papst-franziskus-nonnen-werden-von-priestern-missbraucht-id216375935.html

 

 

Written FOR

CONCEPT OF PEACE GOING VIRAL IN ISRAEL

There is good reason to presume, meanwhile, that an embryonic dynamic of emergent partnership can spread and become self-fulfilling. Hard work, but not unachievable.

No More Enemies

Toward reparative social redesign
By Deb Reich (Author of the Book) ,,,, Click on link

Now hear this, all you energized political partisans out there. You’re feuding about the wrong stuff! Certainly a national crisis (or an election) raises the decibel level of our social discourse to deafening levels, but politics as usual is a fateful distraction. The truly foundational operative distinction awaiting our collective attention is not about politics.

Rescuing ourselves and our planet requires that we focus on Riane Eisler’s classification of societies and cultures as either partnership-oriented or domination-oriented. The usual sociopolitical and economic binaries (capitalist versus communist, left versus right, Europe versus Asia, etc.), while pertinent, are just commentary. The crucial criterion for whether a culture or subculture and its leaders are benign or destructive, to their society and to the planet, is whether they embody a partnership orientation or a domination orientation – because that shapes everything else. For more depth on that subject, read Eisler.

What are our prospects for fostering a society more partnership-oriented than the one we’ve got now? A key obstacle is the unexamined notion of enemies, which deserves a closer look.

We are a flawed species

First, consider this: We humans have evolved toward a self-reinforcing tendency to domination. It’s built in. Modern technology has not altered, and may even have amplified, that tendency. We are a flawed species, violent, territorial, and tribal, and with social media it’s all gone ballistic.

Our cultural extensions evolve ever more rapidly, from the dawn of cyber to wearable computing in just a few decades, while we ourselves remain stuck in barbarism. So let’s say we decide today to envision a deep redesign in human sociocultural evolution and then strive to actualize it. Let’s say we aim to become the fulcrum generation that figures out how to pivot humanity toward a different future as a species – maybe just in time to save the planet and the beings who share it with us. What would we have to do?

Onward to No More Enemies

I suggest that, as a point of departure, we identify a single, beneficent, unifying idea that all humans could rally behind, right now. The ideal unifying concept would help us focus our collective energies on designing a workaround for our in-built toxic behavior patterns – without inviting abusive control by despots, a common downside of revolutions past.

No More Enemies might be just the thing. As a conceptual paradigm, as a meme for species-wide partnership, as a candidate for a reparative viral trajectory, this notion is uniquely suitable. A spirit of solidarity and synergy is inherent in the idea itself.

No More Enemies allows us to say to ourselves: Okay, it’s true we are a flawed species. But we (and “they”) are all similarly tainted; it’s generic. Like domination-oriented cultural blueprints, the enemies paradigm emerged as an artifact of human neurobiology, the same for everyone. We can unlearn the idea that adversaries are necessarily enemies; we can train ourselves to see them as valuable potential allies in a shared quest to transcend the in-built flaws of homo sapiens. Imagine what a powerful functional upgrade this could launch for us all.

Ostensible enemies have managed to cooperate in joint endeavors when the stakes were high enough and the nature of the enterprise was appropriate: Think of the International Space Station, for example, with Russians and Americans spacewalking together in the back yard. Locally, globally, and out there in space, the need for coordinated action powered by partnership is increasing exponentially. The good news: scholars like Eisler and biologist Lynn Margulis have shown that cooperation, not competition, is the real linchpin of evolution. Research critiquing neo-Darwinism suggests that “humans are naturally cooperative, altruistic and social, only reverting to violence when stressed….” That old enemies paradigm has been a powerfully malign stress factor all by itself. So let’s outgrow it.

We could molt the enemies mindset

The notion of enemies is one of those ideas we don’t so much think aboutas think with. Rarely does anyone stop to examine the validity of the idea itself. Meanwhile, we continue to make war on “them” (stronger adversaries) or warehouse “them” behind walls (weaker adversaries) when what we need is smart, joint problem-solving with those same adversaries.

This reparative, self-administered social redesign could help us to start viewing our adversaries as assets instead of threats. No holdouts on either side would be permitted to deflect us from this path. Moreover, when we adopt a No More Enemies filter to screen our own behavior, the impact should radiate. As more individuals anywhere practice something, practicing it becomes easier for others, even in remote locations. We don’t know how or why, although Rupert Sheldrake and others have proposed some elegant theories. There is good reason to presume, meanwhile, that an embryonic dynamic of emergent partnership can spread and become self-fulfilling. Hard work, but not unachievable.

Why wait? Any time is a good time to redesign. The standard wall-mongering autocrat is hawking an obscenely archaic model of human interaction. Let’s identify, align with, and support public figures who commit to the No More Enemies upgrade and can inspire more of us to do likewise. That way lies the major shift we need toward a sustainable shared future. Let’s be bold and co-create a planetary collective of partnership-oriented people (including “them”). Maybe it’s not too late. Let’s find out. No More Enemies.

(To be continued…)

Written FOR

 

BLOCKING APARTHEID

While the Israeli lane allows settlers quick and easy access to the center of Jerusalem, the Palestinian lane is designed to separate Palestinians off through an underpass, diverging to different areas of the West Bank.

Protesters blockade the entrance to the ‘Apartheid Road’ in the West Bank on January 23, 2019 (Photo: PSCC, Facebook)

‘No to Apartheid’: Palestinian activists blockade entrance to Israel’s new ‘Apartheid Road’

Yumna Patel 

Over a dozen Palestinian activists, along with Israeli and international supporters, blockaded the entrance to Israel’s new ‘Apartheid Road’ in the central occupied West Bank district of Jerusalem on Wednesday morning.

The group of activists closed the gates to the newly opened road and formed a human chain, raising banners in Arabic, English, and Hebrew saying “No to Apartheid” and “No to Annexation.”

Israeli forces arrived to the scene, which is located adjacent to an Israeli military base, shortly after the activists closed the road and attempted to forcibly remove them.

Two protesters were arrested and at least four others were injured. One of the detained protesters was identified as Ibrahim Musalem, from the southern West Bank city of Bethlehem.

Palestinian activist Munther Amira, who participated in the protest, said “any shame the [Israeli] Occupation may have had of its apartheid policies is now completely gone with this road. We must not and will not allow for their plan of ethnic cleansing in the outskirts of Jerusalem.”

Israeli authorities opened the ‘Apartheid Road’ or ‘Eastern Ring Road’ earlier this monthto widespread Palestinian and international criticisms.

The four-lane highway features two separate road divided by a concrete wall – one for Israeli settlers and the other for Palestinians.

While the Israeli lane allows settlers quick and easy access to the center of Jerusalem, the Palestinian lane is designed to separate Palestinians off through an underpass, diverging to different areas of the West Bank.

In a statement regarding the protest, the Palestinian Popular Struggle Coordination Committee (PSCC) criticized Israel’s plans to expand the road to the south, saying it would “further entrench the two separate and unequal systems of transportation in the West Bank.”

The road is a key infrastructural part of implementing Israel’s ‘Greater Jerusalem’ or ‘E1’ plan, which seeks the de facto annexation of the three settlement blocs adjacent to Jerusalem city – Gush Etzion to the South, Ma’ale Adumim/E-1 to the east and Givat Ze’ev to the north.

If implemented, the southern West Bank would be completely cut off from the north, making a future contiguous Palestinian state nearly impossible.

More photos at SOURCE 

ZION STILL REELING AT THE (FINAL) TRUTH IN THE NEW YORK TIMES

Look at THIS post before you continue reading …

We are delighted here at the site that Michelle Alexander’s excellent long New York Times column is getting huge attention. 

Michelle Alexander

Why Michelle Alexander’s ‘NY Times’ column is having such a huge impact

We are delighted here at the site that Michelle Alexander’s excellent long New York Times column is getting huge attention — and we are also a little puzzled. The Times has previously run occasional opinion articles critical of Israel and sympathetic to Palestinians, but none of them has had the reverberating impact of Professor Alexander’s January 20 piece. Her article is already clearly a watershed moment, with arguably even more impact on mainstream U.S. opinion than Israel’s onslaught last spring against Gaza’s Great March of Return, which left more than 150 Palestinians dead and another 5800 wounded by live ammunition.

Israel’s Hasbara Central has already recognized the danger. The Israel lobby’s usual suspects struck back immediately, calling Alexander’s measured article “a rant,” with “countless outrages,” that even amounts to “a strategic threat” to Israel.

Why has Alexander prompted such a huge reaction? I have some tentative explanations.

  * First, Alexander reveals an open secret — that many mainstream American progressives have been afraid to speak out against Israel because they fear losing funding for their other important causes, or they fear being smeared by the pro-Israel forces. Alexander bravely includes herself in this category, hinting that she worried that her pathbreaking research and writing into systemic racial discrimination in America could be jeopardized if she came out decisively for Palestine. Her headline told the story: “Time to Break the Silence About Palestine.”

* The U.S. political climate is changing, to be steadily more sympathetic to Palestinians. Young people, Jews and others, no longer uncritically accept the Israel lobby’s propaganda. For the first time, two members of the U.S. Congress, Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar, outspokenly favor the nonviolent program of Boycott Divestment Sanctions (BDS).

* Michelle Alexander is a respected and experienced scholar, who won sufficient renown in her field to be offered a regular New York Times column. (Hasbara Central must be panicking that she will continue to speak out regularly, now that she has broken the ice.)

* We in the alternative press forget how successfully the Times and other mainstream media have protected themselves inside a pro-Israel propaganda fortress. You have to set the occasional pro-Palestine opinion article in the Times alongside the paper’s chronically biased news coverage, day after day, year after year. So when Michelle Alexander says straightforwardly that Israel has “adopted some practices reminiscent of apartheid in South Africa and Jim Crow segregation in the United States,” her view will come as no surprise to regular visitors to Mondoweiss, but those who read the Times on the 7:17 train down from Westchester into New York City may jump out of their seats.

* That Michelle Alexander is a distinguished African-American academic may also be a factor. Many black Americans have for decades seen certain parallels between their situation and the oppression that Palestinians face, a comparison that is surely giving the Israel lobby nightmares.

* Finally, Alexander’s article is extraordinarily eloquent and moving. You expect well-crafted pieces in the Times, but she has written a masterpiece. Here is how she ended: “In this new year, I aim to speak with greater courage and conviction about injustices beyond our borders, particularly those that are funded by our government, and stand in solidarity with struggles for democracy and freedom. My conscience leaves me with no other choice.”

Her article will surely appear in eventual histories about the liberation of Palestine, marking a turning point in history.

ZIONISM …. ‘NO GUILT, NO ATONEMENT’

While Palestinian rights are rarely taken into account, the “Jewish state” has increasingly established itself as the only power in Palestine.

Image by Carlos Latuff

The road to apartheid

Zionism knows no guilt and no atonement

By Evelyn Hecht-Galinski

 

Zionism and the Zionist state terror have only one goal: the sole claim to power on Palestine and the enforcement of this claim by all means. Are they so sure that they can always rely on state European and US support?

The ethnic cleansing of Palestine is a crime against humanity

The ethnic cleansing of Palestine is a crime against humanity, unpunished until today, and leads from Deir Yassin to Gaza. (1) (2)

Fortress Bundestag or Chancellery

In fact, this Zionist colonial policy is losing more and more support in the German, European and American populations. But what does that do to the rulers? Have you ever seriously dealt with citizens’ interests and ideas?Why? Are you so sure in their fortress Bundestag or Chancellery. Seldom did one see so run-down politicians across all parties. They aimlessly give interviews and travel the world, always with the transatlantic alliance in sight, human rights or not. Just do not offend or annoy the “US friend”.

German human rights hypocrites

Let’s see how devastating this kind of subservience affects our politics and economics. Last summer, Foreign Minister Maas had boldly promised in the face of new US-Iran sanctions, to work intensely to ensure that the trade with Iran would be possible and secured support for companies.What was left of it? On Monday, the Federal Government announced its decision to withdraw its operating license from the Iranian airline Mahan Air, which flies three times a week from German airports to Tehran. The Gro / Ko goes beyond sanctions imposed by the EU in early January. The reasons were dubious findings, 

I remember all too well friends and relatives in the Netherlands, who were horrified when the Boeing 747 crashed on October 4, 1992, the El-Al, which crashed on an Amsterdam block of flats and an unknown number of residents to death crack. Three crew members and a passenger also died in the crash. As the Israeli magazine Shiva Yamim reported, the machine had Yamin missiles and military goods aboard that exploded so that the stabilized uranium burned into the wings and spread throughout the area because of the heat Inferno arranged. Since the crash, until today, many residents who had the misfortune to live at the crash site fell ill. Everything was immediately seized by the secret service and covered up. I also know through Dutch acquaintances of Jewish agents who accompanied from Amsterdam via Poland regularly dangerous military supplies in El Al machines, over Poland. was and will the “Jewish state” be deprived of the permission to fly? (3)

To this end, I would like to remind all the human rights hypocrites, especially the Germans, that the Jewish state itself, killing countless of its opponents from its “shadow warriors”, also abroad, to which it is also equipped by his willing German helpers with false passports , It goes without saying that the Jewish state has never been held responsible for the murder policy, at least not for its accomplices. (4) (5) (6)

Worldwide accomplices governments of the “Jewish state”

Where the dubious accusations against Iran come from, we can imagine.The US government has been pressing its allies for many years to withdraw the Iranian line, which has been on the US sanction list since 2011. The ban is also seen as a sign to the Americans. Promptly came the poisoned praise of US Ambassador Grenell, who otherwise excelled only with extortion attempts and undiplomatic poison arrows and isolated in Berlin. All just on the day when the “Jewish State” bragged about attacks on Syria and Iranian fighters and announced further attacks as part of a “permanent policy”. Israel will not allow an “aggression” by Iran, said Prime Minister Netanyahu, who is constantly committing aggression terror himself. The “Jewish state” flew countless attacks against Syria, but even Putin was silent. Not to mention world accomplice governments of the “Jewish state”.

Foreign bodies in the Middle East

What this “permanent policy” looks like, we have been experiencing since the founding of Israel. Regardless of the native Palestinian population, Zionist colonization and Judaization were brutally enforced. The sovereignty of neighboring states has been murderously violated and they have managed, by eternal state of war, to establish themselves as foreign objects in the Middle East. Completely condoned by the international community for decades, they are certain that otherwise the unique trump card of “anti-Semitism” will be drawn from the Zionist sleeve, with which the everlasting role of Jewish victims can be instrumentally exploited – and the guilty conscience for their own failure.

The Holocaust does not justify every means

How many Zionist murders, massacres, occupation crimes and the constant land grabbing took place until today the international community? While Israel is constantly ranting about sanctions against Iran as archenemy and painting a new holocaust on the wall, the international community is reacting with rash subservience. Although the “Jewish state”, armed to the teeth, possesses nuclear weapons, it always feels “threatened” and grotesquely pretends to protect only the security of its citizens. Thus, they use state terrorist methods to legitimize every crime against humanity. Therefore one can not repeat it enough and shout to the submissive politicians: the Holocaust does not justify any means, and a genocide remains a genocide remains a genocide, even if it happens under Jewish state direction!

The antisemitism club is always in use

Meanwhile, the “Jewish State” has built a worldwide sayanim-supporter system that is unique. Especially in the US, Jews have taken strategically important positions in politics, the arts and the publishing industry, as Norman Finkelstein, author of the “Holocaust Industry” writes. Why should it be anti-Semitism when Finkelstein points out? In fact, a lot has changed today. Previously, the Israel lobby was not concerned with Jews being routed as such. Today it is completely different, it is explicitly pointed to the Judaism and put this in the foreground, especially when it comes to celebrities. It ruthlessly turns citizens into Jews who have long since reneged on this religion or been baptized for generations. Escape from this moral extortion is as good as impossible, because everything serves the instrumentalization. The anti-Semitism club is always in use, even if it is getting duller.

No reckless “Jewish exaltation” over nationality

Why do not nations finally defend themselves against the ruthless “exaltation of the Jews” over nationality, as it was also celebrated by various Israeli state and prime ministers. Let us only think of France and Germany, where this method was tried on Jewish citizens in order to lure them into the “Jewish state” as the “homestead” of all Jews. This is a crime and contradicts all state laws of a country. Thus, Jews are the “fifth column”, sitting repeatedly on packed suitcases. If Turkish President Erdogan tried that, there would certainly be a media outcry.

Distraction maneuver to distract from the Zionist crimes

This is just as targeted as the ongoing anti-Semitism campaigns, as we are currently experiencing more and more massive, and the move across Europe. What better than distraction to distract from Zionist crimes? How long can and should this policy be good and tolerated? (7)

Legitimate Palestinian resistance is not terror

While Palestinian rights are rarely taken into account, the “Jewish state” has increasingly established itself as the only power in Palestine. While the Zionist state and occupation terror is unchecked, any Palestinian legitimate resistance is branded as terror. Here, too, we experience this method when Islam and Islam merge into a concept, into terror, just as Muslims became the new enemy. It seems that the “Christian-Jewish value alliance” has finally found its common enemy image. This behavior is a fatal reminder of the Nazi past.

Together with the Jews against Muslims

The “never again” became a “again and again”, this time only with new protagonists. This policy is fatal to the right-wing populists and benefits the AfD. All sit in a boat with the Jews and the “Jewish State” and join forces against the Muslims.

US Jews are rethinking

While in Germany and Europe time and again the “values ​​policy” is endeavored, a rethinking takes place in large parts of the USA and among US Jews. Everything that becomes a controversial taboo subject is allowed in the US. (8) (9)

Enemy images constructed as in the Cold War

Despite a US president who overreached everything and supported the “Jewish state” with all his might. While Israel blatantly supported Syrian al-Nusra terrorists, who were able to do their mischief in Syria and thus brought the Syria war to blaze, it flies undaunted attacks against Syria and tomorrow, perhaps against Lebanon or Iran. Everything is possible with this new power strategy, which increasingly binds us into the US-NATO doctrine. This aggressive policy, which only constructs images of the enemy as in the Cold War, can only end in disaster in the long run. (10 (11)

In the US, thanks to the Trump policy and the “state shutdown”, more and more people, including government officials, are sinking into poverty, unable to pay their rent, installments and food, all thanks to the brutal Trump First policy. (12)

The BDS campaign is becoming increasingly successful internationally

But there is a small ray of hope. More and more young Jewish US citizens refuse that the “Jewish state” holds them liable and speaks and acts for them. They oppose openly, even if that can lead to fatal consequences in universities and in professional life. The BDS campaign is becoming increasingly successful internationally. (11)

In this country, there is a lack of critical Jews

Why was so much silence when it comes to Palestine? Because in the US in particular the political system is based to a large extent on sponsoring and donations. Also, the Mc Carthy times are not forgotten and dirt and slander campaigns are therefore not missing their effect. So it is doubly admirable, as more and more Jewish US citizens abandon the fatal Israel-dependent mainstream. While the Israel lobby and its media and political supporters have long since started to provoke dirty defamation campaigns here, critical Jews who are finally campaigning for respect for human rights and finally refusing to embrace the policy of “loyalty to the Nibelung” to an occupied state are lacking to support. Getting up for freedom Palestine should finally be the maxim. Silence wrongfully means being guilty. (13)

We who stand up for Palestinian freedom know, unlike the Zionists, what guilt and punishment mean.

 

(1) https://www.marx21.de/das-massaker-von-deir-yassin/

(2) https://www.fluechtlingsrat-hamburg.de/content/Flugblatt_GAZA_100109.pdf

(3) https://electronicintifada.net/content/1992-el-al-bijlmer-crash-cover-chemical-inferno/5250

(4) https://www.faz.net/aktuell/politik/ausland/dubai-mord-in-zimmer-230-1577373.html

(5) https://www.daserste.de/information/wissen-kultur/ttt/ttt-der-schattenkrieg-buch-von-ronen-bergman-about-the-mossad-100.html

(6) http://www.spiegel.de/politik/ausland/iran-der-lange-arm-des-regimes-in-europa-a-1249128.html

(7) https://www.nachdenkseiten.de/?p=45356

(8) https://amchainitiative.org/us-jews-renounce-their-right-of-return-and-support-bds/

(9) https://connectiv.events/jerusalem-post-israel-supported-syrian-receives-with-weapons-munition-and-medicaments/

(10) https://www.nytimes.com/2019/01/19/opinion/sunday/martin-luther-king-palestine-israel.html?fbclid=IwAR1Rw0Ub60d213vbcuEEdj3j2jUqjNYHX-iYDJRn93OES3i3oqQZREGXbwE

(11) http://www.witf.org/news/2019/01/for-the-poor-the-safety-net-in-a-shutdown-doesnt-feel-safe.php

(12) https://electronicintifada.net/blogs/nora-barrows-friedman/listen-las-israel-lobby-fails-ban-conference-palestinian-rights

(13) https://mondoweiss.net/2017/02/dependence-pressure-hostility/

AN OPINION PIECE FROM THE TIMES THAT WE CAN LIVE WITH

Martin Luther King Jr. courageously spoke out about the Vietnam War. We must do the same when it comes to this grave injustice of our time.

“We must speak with all the humility that is appropriate to our limited vision, but we must speak,” the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. declared at Riverside Church in Manhattan in 1967.Credit John C. Goodwin

Time to Break the Silence on Palestine

By Michelle Alexander

Opinion Columnist

On April 4, 1967, exactly one year before his assassination, the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. stepped up to the lectern at the Riverside Church in Manhattan. The United States had been in active combat in Vietnam for two years and tens of thousands of people had been killed, including some 10,000 American troops. The political establishment — from left to right — backed the war, and more than 400,000 American service members were in Vietnam, their lives on the line.

Many of King’s strongest allies urged him to remain silent about the war or at least to soft-pedal any criticism. They knew that if he told the whole truth about the unjust and disastrous war he would be falsely labeled a Communist, suffer retaliation and severe backlash, alienate supporters and threaten the fragile progress of the civil rights movement.

King rejected all the well-meaning advice and said, “I come to this magnificent house of worship tonight because my conscience leaves me no other choice.” Quoting a statement by the Clergy and Laymen Concerned About Vietnam, he said, “A time comes when silence is betrayal” and added, “that time has come for us in relation to Vietnam.”

It was a lonely, moral stance. And it cost him. But it set an example of what is required of us if we are to honor our deepest values in times of crisis, even when silence would better serve our personal interests or the communities and causes we hold most dear. It’s what I think about when I go over the excuses and rationalizations that have kept me largely silent on one of the great moral challenges of our time: the crisis in Israel-Palestine.

I have not been alone. Until very recently, the entire Congress has remained mostly silent on the human rights nightmare that has unfolded in the occupied territories. Our elected representatives, who operate in a political environment where Israel’s political lobby holds well-documented power, have consistently minimized and deflected criticism of the State of Israel, even as it has grown more emboldened in its occupation of Palestinian territory and adopted some practices reminiscent of apartheid in South Africa and Jim Crow segregation in the United States.

Many civil rights activists and organizations have remained silent as well, not because they lack concern or sympathy for the Palestinian people, but because they fear loss of funding from foundations, and false charges of anti-Semitism. They worry, as I once did, that their important social justice work will be compromised or discredited by smear campaigns.

Similarly, many students are fearful of expressing support for Palestinian rights because of the McCarthyite tactics of secret organizations likeCanary Mission, which blacklists those who publicly dare to support boycotts against Israel, jeopardizing their employment prospects and future careers.

Reading King’s speech at Riverside more than 50 years later, I am left with little doubt that his teachings and message require us to speak out passionately against the human rights crisis in Israel-Palestine, despite the risks and despite the complexity of the issues. King argued, when speaking of Vietnam, that even “when the issues at hand seem as perplexing as they often do in the case of this dreadful conflict,” we must not be mesmerized by uncertainty. “We must speak with all the humility that is appropriate to our limited vision, but we must speak.”

And so, if we are to honor King’s message and not merely the man, we must condemn Israel’s actions: unrelenting violations of international law, continued occupation of the West Bank, East Jerusalem, and Gaza, home demolitions and land confiscations. We must cry out at the treatment of Palestinians at checkpoints, the routine searches of their homes and restrictions on their movements, and the severely limited access to decent housing, schools, food, hospitals and water that many of them face.

We must not tolerate Israel’s refusal even to discuss the right of Palestinian refugees to return to their homes, as prescribed by United Nations resolutions, and we ought to question the U.S. government funds that have supported multiple hostilities and thousands of civilian casualties in Gaza, as well as the $38 billion the U.S. government has pledged in military support to Israel.

And finally, we must, with as much courage and conviction as we can muster, speak out against the system of legal discrimination that exists inside Israel, a system complete with, according to Adalah, the Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel, more than 50 laws that discriminate against Palestinians — such as the new nation-state law that says explicitly that only Jewish Israelis have the right of self-determination in Israel, ignoring the rights of the Arab minority that makes up 21 percent of the population.

Of course, there will be those who say that we can’t know for sure what King would do or think regarding Israel-Palestine today. That is true. The evidence regarding King’s views on Israel is complicated and contradictory.

Although the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee denouncedIsrael’s actions against Palestinians, King found himself conflicted. Like many black leaders of the time, he recognized European Jewry as a persecuted, oppressed and homeless people striving to build a nation of their own, and he wanted to show solidarity with the Jewish community, which had been a critically important ally in the civil rights movement.

Ultimately, King canceled a pilgrimage to Israel in 1967 after Israel captured the West Bank. During a phone call about the visit with his advisers, he said, “I just think that if I go, the Arab world, and of course Africa and Asia for that matter, would interpret this as endorsing everything that Israel has done, and I do have questions of doubt.”

He continued to support Israel’s right to exist but also said on national television that it would be necessary for Israel to return parts of its conquered territory to achieve true peace and security and to avoid exacerbating the conflict. There was no way King could publicly reconcile his commitment to nonviolence and justice for all people, everywhere, with what had transpired after the 1967 war.

Today, we can only speculate about where King would stand. Yet I find myself in agreement with the historian Robin D.G. Kelley, who concluded that, if King had the opportunity to study the current situation in the same way he had studied Vietnam, “his unequivocal opposition to violence, colonialism, racism and militarism would have made him an incisive critic of Israel’s current policies.”

Everyone is talking about one thing this morning, the outstanding piece by Michelle Alexander in the New York Times, yes, the New York Times.
*

Israel just ‘lost Cronkite’ — the struggle for Palestinian rights at ‘The New York Times’

Robert Herbst
*
Complaints about distorted news coverage of events in Israel-Palestine have been a staple on this site for years.

WHY THE ISRAELI RIGHT DESPISES THE LEFT

An IDF soldier has been charged with assault for striking an Arab teen in the city of Hevron in Judea.

The footage of the incident was recorded by the far-left organization B’Tselem in November 2017.

Soldiers and Israeli civilians in Hevron IDF spokesperson

Indictment against soldier filmed hitting Arab teen in Hevron

IDF soldier charged with assault over incident in November 2017 which was filmed by far-left B’Tselem organization.

An IDF soldier has been charged with assault for striking an Arab teen in the city of Hevron in Judea.

On Thursday, chief army prosecutor Maj. Gen. Sharon Afek okayed the indictment against a Givati Brigade soldier who was filmed striking a 16-year-old Palestinian Arab during a confrontation in Hevron, Hadashot 13 reported.

The footage of the incident was recorded by the far-left organization B’Tselem in November 2017.

Following the release of the footage, army investigators opened a probe into the incident.

 

SOURCE

THE UNGENTRIFICATION OF PALESTINE

They are “demolishing our Palestinian heritage.”

“The Palestinian identity of [Haifa] city is being reinvested and reshaped for the benefit of the hegemonic Zionist narrative.”

“The Artists’ Quarter,” a new condo development in Wadi Salib. Advertisements outside the building feature families and the slogan,”You are the Quarter” (“Atem haRova”). (Photo: Yuula Benivolski)

Gentrification in Haifa soars as Palestinian homes are converted into luxury real estate

Israel’s Haifa municipality is unveiling major plans to transform the city in northern Israel into a Barcelona of the Middle East – a city with captivating ancient architecture redolent of a storied past.

However, there is one problem: these homes belonged to Palestinians. Most of whom were among some 750,000 who fled or were expelled from their homes and lands in 1948 during the Arab-Israeli war that marked Israel’s creation – referred to as the Nakba, or “catastrophe,” by Palestinians.

During Israel’s first years of statehood, the buildings, including many large villas, were shuttered and blocked up with concrete, left that way for decades. Palestinians often kept records of their original deeds and house keys, yet they were never allowed to return to their homes.

Other homes were until recently rented to Palestinians by Israeli companies that acquired Palestinian properties in the years after the Nakba. These decrepit buildings were often neglected until the city deemed them unliveable, and evicted the Palestinian residents. Now the homes are being flipped into luxury units.

Many of the refugees from Haifa and their descendants now reside in refugee camps in Lebanon and Jenin in the occupied West Bank. In 1948, some 40,000 Palestinians also became internally displaced within the borders of the newly established Israeli state.

“They are essentially turning the ruins of the Nakba into economic projects for Israel’s free market,” said Orwa Switat, a Haifa-based activist and urban planner. Switat told Mondoweiss the municipality’s new projects in the historic Palestinian areas in Haifa include the development of “luxury apartments, prestige condos, an artist village and galleries, and a commercial area and offices.”

“Now the municipality is reshaping and turning this space into a center for leisure and art, and luxury and boutique apartments in order to gentrify it and turn it into projects that the Israeli market profits from,” he said.

Boarded up building in the Wadi Salib neighborhood with “The Gallery” condo in the background (Photo: Yuula Benivolski)

Wadi Salib: ‘Demolishing our Palestinian heritage’

Gentrification hit Haifa about 20 years ago, but it was gradual at first. That process has increased significantly in the past five years, according to Jafar Farah, director of the Mossawa Center in Haifa. The change in speed came when the municipality opened more homes for purchase from private developers, selling sometimes 45 homes in one bid, Farah said.

“In this case, no Arab investor or family can buy these houses. The target is big companies,” he said, adding that many Palestinian residents of the city suffer from poverty and are therefore unable to purchase the homes.

Most of the development is in Wadi Salib, which was the largest Palestinian neighborhood in Haifa before 1948, when it was depopulated of its Palestinian residents.

In Wadi Salib, 14 Israeli developers purchased the whole neighborhood, amounting to hundreds of housing units, between 2010 and 2012. The purchased houses were either demolished with modern structures built in their place or the historic homes were renovated and marketed for their so-called authenticity.

They are “demolishing our Palestinian heritage,” Johnny Mansour, a Haifa-based author and historian, told Mondoweiss.

Switat noted that Wadi Salib is “not just a place of gentrification.” But it is also a “historical Palestinian area that was captured, neglected for decades, and now is being gentrified and recreated into new Israeli projects that do not serve the indigenous Palestinian community.”

“This change will change the meaning of the neighborhood itself and the historical Palestinian center of Haifa into an orientalist project, where the municipality uses that Arab style of architecture and heritage, and then depoliticizes and neutralizes it from its political context and historical displacement,” Switat said.

Meanwhile, “the actual owners of the houses are still refugees today in Lebanon.”

According to Farah, vacant refugee buildings in the nearby Palestinian neighborhood of Wadi Nisnas also in Haifa have recently been targeted for development.

Yaacov Zitser accounting firm bought one of the old buildings for its offices. across from it are dozens of emptied and gutted Palestinian buildings, Haifa. (Credit: Yuula Benivolski)

Hadar: ‘I still remember the families who used to live there’

Uphill from Wadi Salib, Emil Afara, 90, was 20 years old when Zionist militias expelled his family from their home in the Hadar neighborhood in Haifa city.

He and his family sought refuge, along with some 13 other families, at the Stella Maris Monastery nestled on the slopes of Mount Carmel, about five miles away from their home. They survived on bread made of ingredients donated by the priests at the religious compound, Afara said from his home in Wadi Nisnas in central Haifa where he lives today. It is walking distance from his original home.

“I know the families who own these homes. It’s not easy. When I look at the homes, I still remember all the families in Haifa that used to live there,” Afara continued, “It’s very sad, because they are not here anymore.”

Activists and rights groups are challenging this “ethnic gentrification” in Haifa. Several organizations in Haifa are attempting to convince the new mayor, Einat Kalisch-Rotem, to include the Palestinian communities into their development plans and halt economic projects that would destroy the Palestinian history and heritage of the city.

The Israeli municipalities often do not include Palestinian communities into their strategic plans for development, even if the plans are laid on top of Palestinian neighborhoods or in cities with sizable Palestinian populations. Oftentimes, Palestinian residents  become aware of the municipality’s plans only after they are implemented.

Afara, however, does not hold much hope that the municipality’s plans will change. “I saw them take the homes from us. They gave them to Jews or blocked them up so their owners could never come back,” he said. “Now they are demolishing them and some of our beautiful [Palestinian] homes are being renovated and sold.”

“Israel has taken everything from us,” he said.

In Haifa, out of 75,000 Palestinian residents only 3,000 remained in the city after 1948. According to Mansour, the historian, during the fighting Palestinians were pushed into Wadi Nisnas where they were placed under a siege for about two months, unable to leave the area unless receiving special permission from authorities.

“Those who remained in Wadi Nisnas lost all of their properties to the Israeli state,” Mansour said. “They became strangers in their own city.”

Mansour added that the original Palestinian owners, some of whom are still within the boundaries of Haifa, are “very afraid and conscious about what is happening to their properties.”

After Israel passed the Absentees’ Property Law in 1950, the properties of Palestinian refugees and those internally displaced, who were referred to as “present absentees”, were transferred to Israel’s General Custodian.

Amidar, a state-owned and state-run housing company, was created by Israel and tasked with managing these properties. In 1953 Israel passed the Land Acquisition Law, allowing the state to use these confiscated properties and assets for Jewish settlement, development, and Israeli security and military interests.

This was the last step to “complete the process of formal transfer of ownership of confiscated [Palestinian] land,” Switat said, paving the way for historic Palestinian neighborhoods to be transformed into profitable economic ventures for private Israeli companies and the state.

Turkish hammam built by the Ottomans, now a luxury restaurant and “interior design studio” called Studio 99 (Credit: Yuula Benivolski)

Barcelona, Israeli style

A major plan for Haifa’s municipality is to develop the coastal area in order to create a touristic port similar to Barcelona. This project is called “Haifa waterfront,” Switat told Mondoweiss, and will result in the eviction of an entire Palestinian neighborhood.

The development project involves moving the port, which is now disconnected from the city, to the east of Haifa city. Throughout this project, residents of the al-Mahatta neighborhood — located near the port — are being evicted and their homes demolished to make room for 700 luxury apartments and a touristic area including bars, restaurants and hotels.

The al-Mahatta neighborhood, according to Switat, is one of the oldest Palestinian neighborhoods in Haifa, representing the origins of the city.

Many of the residents in al-Mahatta were evicted under the pretense that their homes were “too dangerous” for them to continue to reside in, owing to Amidar — which owns almost half of the homes in al-Mahatta, failing to repair or improve the buildings, Mansour said. The company then uses the dilapidated state of the buildings as an excuse to kick residents out.

Meanwhile, others were evicted after losing their protected tenancy rights, which had permitted them to live in the homes for a fixed, reduced rent. These policies in the city are “creating a reality in which people [Palestinians] are being slowly pushed out of their historical neighborhoods,” Switat said.

According to Mansour, out of 600 apartments in the neighborhood, only 28 remain standing.

Haifa’s artists’ quarter: an advertisement for the gallery and boutique apartments on the facade of a boarded up Palestinian building in Haifa (Credit: Yuula Benivolski)

It starts with the artists

The gentrification taking hold in Haifa city has been implemented by Israel’s municipalities and government in other Palestinian urban areas in Israel, particularly Jaffa and Akka.

Jaffa was one of the first Palestinian urban areas to undergo major transformations. The Israeli government began destroying Palestinian homes and evicting families as early as the 1960s, Switat explained.

From 1949 to 1992 it was illegal for Palestinians to repair homes built before Israel declared statehood in 1948, thus forcing Palestinians to live in units where lack of repairs caused them to fail to meet zoning codes.

Much like the plans for Haifa today, the city of Tel Aviv approved an urban renewal plan in 1992 that catered to Israelis seeking to buy and renovate homes that were priced out of reach for most Palestinians. The plan made no specific accommodation to Palestinians renting homes in Absentee properties. It further created cumbersome terms for Palestinians who inherited houses in Jaffa.

In 1996, Israel then approved a policy that legalized the sale of all remaining Palestinian Absentee houses. This created a fire sale. More than 900 shuttered homes belonging to Palestinian refugees in Haifa, Jaffa, and Akka were privatized and sold at auctions between 2010 and 2015, Switat said.

As a result of this gentrification process, “Jaffa today is no longer Palestinian,” Switat said.

In Jaffa, this same gentrification process is almost complete, transforming the historical Palestinian city into an affluent Israeli neighborhood. Switat tells Mondoweiss that Israeli artists are often the “pioneers” of this “ethnic gentrification” in historic Palestinian areas in Israel.

“The artists are the ones willing to live in buildings that are in bad shape, where they can make it an art gallery. And then they create a coffee shop and then restaurants,” he said. “They start the movement through festivals in order to attract students and middle class young couples who are attracted to that kind of ‘authentic’ cultural atmosphere that the artists create.”

In a similar process, “the Palestinian identity of [Haifa] city is being reinvested and reshaped for the benefit of the hegemonic Zionist narrative,” Switat noted.

Haifa city was founded some 250 years ago by Daher el-Omar, a Palestinian who ruled the Galilee during the Ottoman Empire. However, the city’s Palestinian history does not exist in Haifa’s public spaces.

“In Haifa, you have museums for exhibiting Japanese art, but you can’t find an exhibition that describes the Palestinian history of the city,” Switat said.

This gentrification process, Switat added, is aimed at “erasing the Palestinian narrative” from the city.

RESISTANCE AS A SYMBOL OF LIBERATION

Is not the desperate struggle of many young Palestinians against the decades-long Zionist occupation of their country a symbol of resistance?

Resistance as a symbol of liberation

By Evelyn Hecht-Galinski

If the liberation of Auschwitz was thought of 74 years ago in the German Bundestag on January 31, one could also think about a changed commemoration owed to today’s politics. It would be a start if this year’s guest speaker, Prof. dr. Saul Friedländer, a Prague-born historian whose parents were murdered in Auschwitz, who survived the Holocaust hidden in France and who emigrated to Israel after the end of the war, would shed light on all facets of the symbol of “Auschwitz and Liberation”. Especially after the ceremony, an exhibition of the United States Holocaust Museum entitled “Some were neighbors” is opened.

Parallels from the Warsaw Ghetto to Gaza

 

Would not it be an important gesture, if Friedländer would dare, what would never come to mind German politicians and friends of Israel, namely parallels from the Warsaw Ghetto to Gaza or the illegal occupation of Palestine by Holocaust victims and their descendants?

2 million imprisoned people in the Gaza concentration camp accuse

 

Is not the desperate struggle of many young Palestinians against the decades-long Zionist occupation of their country a symbol of resistance?And why are they criminalizing this unequal and desperate struggle while Jewish resistance is being heroized? Is not it necessary to put an end to this kind of “Christian-Jewish values ​​alliance”? Do not nearly 2 million imprisoned people protest in the Gaza concentration camp, especially in memory of Auschwitz and the Warsaw Ghetto? (1)

Is not the Warsaw Ghetto the symbol of Jewish resistance to German occupation 76 years ago on 19 April 1943?

Under unspeakable conditions, more than 380,000 Jews had to live in the Warsaw Ghetto since 1940, including my mother. On April 19, 1943, a few hundred of them opposed a superior force of two thousand German occupiers. They knew this fight was hopeless and impossible to win, but they wanted to resist, upright with the gun in hand.

If on January 15 on Arte and on January 22 in the ARD “The Secret Archive in the Warsaw Ghetto” TV premiere and worldwide film screenings in more than 200 locations around the world, u. A. is shown on big screens in Australia, Brazil, Nepal, South Africa and the USA and in various cities in Germany, this is a major project which is unparalleled.

“I did not survive Auschwitz to keep silent on new injustice”

 

And for me, the life motto of my father after his liberation by the Red Army was: “I did not survive Auschwitz to remain silent on new injustice”, always a drive, not to mention wrongly and to campaign for the freedom of Palestine.

Not in the name of “all Jews”

 

Therefore, I will never understand that German politicians are silent in the face of the crimes committed by the “Jewish State”! Especially those who repeatedly talk about Auschwitz as a symbol of politics should be ashamed.How cynical must one be to close one’s eyes to racism, apartheid, human and international crimes, all committed to the justification of the eternal role of victims and an infamous instrumentalization of the Holocaust, given the state of the “Jewish state” and the occupied territories certainly not in the name of “all Jews”!

“Apartheid Road” symbol of racism

 

Last Thursday, a new road was opened in the middle of the occupied West Bank, with an eight-meter-long wall separating Jewish and Palestinian people. This “Apartheid Road” connects the illegal Jewish Geva settlement, southeast of Ramallah, with Route 1, a major road that runs through the occupied West Bank and into occupied East Jerusalem. The occupiers are doing everything they can to make the Palestinians a normal daily life with checkpoints, controls and humiliations. There are already dozens of separate racist apartheid streets built only for Jewish settlers. However, Route 4370 is the first of its kind to have a special feature, namely a wall – half concrete, half fence – that separates Palestinians and Jewish Israelis. If that’s not a symbol of racism and apartheid, it’s even worse than it ever was in apartheid South Africa. Everything is done to cement the demographic demarcation so as to make the West Bank more and more economical and undermine the prospects for the Palestinians. So it goes on piece by piece on the way of expropriation and in the final solution of the Judaisierung. Everything is hoping for the “Greater Jerusalem”, the de facto annexation of the three large settlement blocks, adjacent to Jerusalem City – Gush Etzion in the south, Ma’ale Adumim / E-1 in the east and Givat Ze’ev in the north. Everything is done to facilitate the Jewish settlers free travel to the illegally occupied Jerusalem, claiming the claim to the whole of Jerusalem as an eternally undivided capital of the “Jewish state”.Everything presented by the Trump USA with the breach of international law of a move of its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. (2)

If implemented, the southern West Bank would be completely cut off from the north, making a future coherent and viable state of Palestine forever impossible, but would make it all belong to this Jewish territory from Jerusalem to the Jericho border. All of these plans are based on the ideas of former Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, the notorious warmonger known as the Butcher of Lebanon.

Netanyahu’s visions of wall construction and apartheid streets

 

2.8 million Palestinians in the West Bank are faced with perfected facts by 500,000 Jewish settlers. These are the political visions of Netanyahu: Walling and apartheid streets, modeled after US friend Trump, who now holds large sections of US officials and workers willing in brutal hostage to enforce his construction of the wall to Mexico. This is what the ethnic cleansing of Palestine looks like – the German Foreign Minister, who has gone into politics because of “Auschwitz”, is silent on it!

Housing units on the site of the massacre of Deir Yassin

If soon plans are also enforced to let 2,300 residential units built just on the site of the massacre of Deir Yassin, then this is incredible and can not be beaten at tasteless Geschichtsklitterung! At the moment, the Jewish National Fund is grandly announcing how much it is doing to strengthen the ecology of Israeli forests. However, the sad truth is that with the green washing of the occupation and land expropriation everything is to be veiled, which reminds of the expulsion of the Palestinians from their homeland.

The illegal expropriation of Palestine by the JNF

Many of the forests originated only to cover the ruins of the Palestinian villages, which were destroyed and violently depopulated during the Nakba in 1948. According to Zochrot, an important and worthy non-profit Israeli organization committed to exposing and commemorating the Nakba crimes. Finally, among more than two-thirds of the forests and sites of KKL Keren Kayemeth LeIsrael (the one with the blue can), as part of the JNF, 46 out of 68 forests are buried on the ruins of the former Palestinian demolished by the “Jewish State” villages. Thus, the illegal expropriation of Palestine by the JNF continues and is just the big illegal settlement blocs in Palestine to good. In this context, it is also particularly reprehensible when German politicians, from left-wing politicians Bartsch to Steinmeier and Nahles (SPD) plant again and again “German forests” on stolen land, mind you! (3) (4)

Speaking of Andrea Nahles, the former “Juso” blue shirt and Israel supporter has once again turned entirely to SPD-Art. The SPD leader said last November in a speech in Berlin, it was “likely” that the former SPD politician Gustav Noske (1868-1946) in the assassination of Rosa Luxemburg “his hands in the game” had. Now, however, as the anniversary approached the murder of her former party member, Nahles declined to take responsibility for the assassination of the future KPD co-founder Rosa Luxemburg, despite the call of the Luxembourg researcher Klaus Gietinger and other SPD left intellectual. No wonder,

Nahles anti-Semitic?

 

Rosa Luxemburg was a heroine, women’s rights activist, Jewish and martyr of the November Revolution. So is Nahles anti-Semitic even if she now rejects the responsibility and complicity of the SPD?

Terrifying SPD parallels

 

Frightening parallels can be drawn to this day: Rosa Luxemburg then founded an anti-war group on the attitude of the SPD in August 1914 and, in contrast to the “war-friendly” SPD, remained faithful to her pacifism until her assassination. (5)

What has the SPD to this day failed to adhere to its principles and to vote against arms and war missions? The radical decree and the NATO double decree are also no fame. (6)

Who betrayed us? Social Democrats!

Anyway, with this kind of politics, the SPD will not win votes. “Who betrayed us? Social Democrats, “is a saying that is undoubtedly underlined by a large number of former voters. Especially I would like to recommend the newly published Rosa Luxemburg biography of Ernst Piper. (7) (8) (9)

The freedom of dissenters, but was not in the GDR

 

But even the former GDR has certainly not acted in the sense of Rosa Luxemburg, if she took this woman for herself. Was not it precisely Rosa Luxemburg who demanded “the freedom of the dissident?” No wall construction and stasis methods. Were not GDR citizens, like the songwriter Stefan Krawczyk arrested and deported to the West, because they participated in a demonstration on January 17, 1988 “Liebknecht -Luxembourg”, which called for “freedom for dissenters”? (10) She was a woman of character and charisma, which is lacking today’s women politicians. It was good that many real leftists remembered them and the assassination of Karl Liebknecht and did not forget the Stalin victims. Again, the SPD has missed a chance of the historical work, which sadly connects them with the “Jewish state”, who does not want to know anything about Nakba history, except for his own Holocaust memory. Under these conditions, I plead for a memorial service in the German Bundestag in memory of the Nakba as a result of the Holocaust and the founding of the “Jewish State” on the backs of the Palestinians. As a speaker of the speech, the Israeli historian Prof. Ilan Papp would be considered, author of numerous groundbreaking books on this subject.

So we never forget the resistance as a symbol of liberation.

(1)https://www.btselem.org/gaza_strip/20181122_over_5800_palestinians_wounded_in_7_months_of_protests?fbclid=IwAR0lX6wRbKJkf8UIuNZMn8kSzIkx2ea9gp3kUjjUycJd0YyHnJBy-ta6U1o

(2) https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2019/01/israel-opens-apartheid-road-occupied-west-bank-190110051605433.html

(3) https://www.jnf-kkl.de/d/spdwald.htm?neuer-spendenanlass-490

(4) http://www.taz.de/!5069433/

(5) https://www.zeit.de/2013/29/berufsverbote-radikaleerlass-1972/komplettansicht

(6) https://www.zeit.de/2013/29/berufsverbote-radikaleerlass-1972/komplettansicht

(7) https://www.zeit.de/2014/08/rosa-luxemburg-erster-weltkrieg-pazifismus?print

(8) https://www.zeit.de/2019/03/kpd-100-jahre-linke-spd

(9) https://www.deutschlandfunkkultur.de/ernst-piper-ueber-seine-neue-rosa-luxemburg-biografie-yhre.2162.de.html?dram:article_id=438175

(10) https://www.mdr.de/damals/archiv/luxemburg-demonstration100.html

WHEN APARTHEID IS NOT ENOUGH RACISM MUST BE INTENSIFIED

One of the most dangerous aspects about regimes of colonial oppression is that they strive to occupy the mind of the oppressed, not just their land.

Defying Racism: A Palestinian musician’s ordeal at Ben Gurion Airport

I left our family home on Monday January 7, 2019, at 9:30 am to be at Ben Gurion Airport, near Tel Aviv, at 10:30 am to catch my 12:45 pm flight to Amsterdam, where I am currently pursuing my bachelor’s degree in music.

Before packing my suitcase the night before, I made a packing list to make sure I didn’t forget anything. I managed to cross everything off the list and be at the airport on time. But there was one thing I forgot to write down… one very important detail that I simply forgot to think about… I am Palestinian!

Like all Palestinians carrying Israeli citizenship and living under Israel’s regime of apartheid, I always have a bad feeling about going to the airport, and this time was no exception. The flu I caught a night before did not help either. My mother, who drove me to the airport, was really worried about a military checkpoint on the way that could make me miss my flight, but we got “lucky” this time.

A colonial military occupation, brutalizing you for so many years, can really mess up your expectations. Crossing a military roadblock starts giving you this strange feeling of achievement. Your basic human rights become a privilege rather than the norm, and that becomes the new norm.

One of the most dangerous aspects about regimes of colonial oppression is that they strive to occupy the mind of the oppressed, not just their land.

We arrived at the airport, and I was trying to convince my mother not to wait for me to finish the dehumanizing “security” check like she always does. While I always love to see her face at a distance, behind the thick glass, waiving her reassuring hand, I really hate to see her angrily but helplessly observe the racist Israeli security officials trying to humiliate me just because of who I am—a Palestinian. I begged her to leave, but she insisted: “I can’t just leave you in this horrible place. You never know what happens.” She was right!

My Arabic name on my passport immediately gave away my identity, inviting their “royal” treatment. When the security officer asked me whether I spoke Hebrew and I said no, her anger was visible. When she asked me what I was doing in Amsterdam and I answered that I was studying jazz, she could no longer contain her racist vibes. How could I so bluntly destroy her bigoted stereotype of “Arab women”? She told me I had to undergo an intrusive “body search.”

I immediately accused her of racism, of racial profiling and of being vengeful against me because of who I am and what I do. She shouted back that she was doing her job. I reminded her that many unspeakable crimes in history have been perpetrated under that immoral excuse.

She took her revenge by claiming that my laptop did not pass her security check and therefore cannot go with me on the plane. This is despite the fact that she asked me to open it and turn it on, which I did successfully. She said they would send it by mail to my address in Amsterdam. I laughed at her audacity and objected strongly. I know from my own experience, and from other Palestinians’ experiences, that leaving your laptop with Ben Gurion airport security invariably means it will be hacked, damaged or “lost.”

I told her that I cannot travel without my laptop as all my music and lecture notes are on it and without that I cannot go to any of my classes.

Her supervisor supported her vindictive decision, so I was forced to miss my flight. I took my laptop and walked out to where my mother was anxiously waiting. She greeted me with the warmest of hugs and a few tears and said, “Don’t worry about a thing, we’ll find a solution. I am so proud of you!”

The next day, she drove me to the land crossing with Jordan. After spending a lovely night with family in Amman, enjoying my great-aunt’s famous white cheese and spinach pies, I traveled through the welcoming Amman airport and arrived in Amsterdam safe, with my laptop and with my dignity intact.

As furious as I am at the Israeli security officer’s ugly racism and vengefulness, I felt slightly bad for her. Despite her best efforts to humiliate me, I shall go on resisting her state’s racism and apartheid with my music, and one day I may actually make a difference in my people’s struggle for liberation. She, however, will continue to search Palestinians’ underwear, to lie about our laptops not passing security checks, and to be an insignificant tool of a system of racist oppression.

As I was about to get out of the airport, I raised my voice to make sure my finale reaches as many people in the airport as possible. “You know what is very close to Amsterdam? The Hague. One day, you and your leaders will be prosecuted for crimes at the International Criminal Court there.”

She remained silent and looked down, and I walked out with a smile, my head held up high, and saw mama’s hand still waiving.

APARTHEID BY ANY OTHER NAME IS STILL APARTHEID

Israel opened a new road in the central occupied West Bank on Thursday with an eight-meter wall separating Palestinian and Israeli traffic, leading many to deem the route “Apartheid Road.”

Image by Latuff

Israel’s new ‘Apartheid Road’ separates Palestinian and Israeli drivers with 8-meter wall

 Yumna Patel

Israel opened a new road in the central occupied West Bank on Thursday with an eight-meter wall separating Palestinian and Israeli traffic, leading many to deem the route “Apartheid Road.”

The road connects the illegal Geva Binyamin Settlement, southeast of Ramallah, to Route 1, a major highway that runs through the West Bank and into Israeli-occupied East Jerusalem.

The new 5-kilometer Route 4370, also known as the “Easter Ring Route” is a four lane route: two lanes for Israeli settlers travelling from the West Bank into Jerusalem, and two lanes circumventing around the borders of Jerusalem for Palestinians with West Bank IDs.

The Israeli-accessible portion of the road is currently only operating between 5am and noon, but will be fully opened as of January 10th, Israeli media reported.

While Israeli media have reported that Palestinians with Jerusalem IDs or Israeli citizenship would be allowed to use the Israeli-side of the road to travel from Jerusalem to the West Bank, heightened security and a new checkpoint along the road have led to speculation that Palestinians, no matter what ID they carry, will be subject to discrimination by Israeli border police who man the checkpoint.

There are dozens of segregated and settler-only roads across the occupied Palestinian territory, but Route 4370 is the first of its kind to have a wall — half concrete, half fence — separating Palestinians from Israelis.

Israeli authorities have said the road is meant to ease traffic congestion at the Hizma checkpoint north of Jerusalem, and have even claimed the road offers “a solution for all populations, Israeli and Palestinian.”

Israel’s Public Security Minister called he road “an example of the ability to create a shared life between Israelis and Palestinians, while dealing with the existing security challenges.”

Palestinian officials and activists on the other hand have condemned the road as an example of Israeli apartheid and racism against Palestinians.

The Palestinian Foreign Ministry slammed the new road as “emphasizing Israel’s approach aiming to undermine prospects for geographical and demographic contiguity of the West Bank.”

The Times of Israel quoted PA Transportation Ministry Spokesman Mohammad Hamdan as saying that “all roads in the State of Palestine should be accessible to Palestinians. This new road is absolutely unacceptable and embodies barefaced discrimination against the Palestinian people.”

Years in the making

The ‘Apartheid Road’ has been years in the making, and according to rights groups, and is about much more than just easing traffic for settlers traveling to Jerusalem.

The road is a key infrastructural part of implementing Israel’s ‘Greater Jerusalem’ or ‘E1’ plan, which seeks the de facto annexation of the three settlement blocs adjacent to Jerusalem city – Gush Etzion to the South, Ma’ale Adumim/E-1 to the east and Givat Ze’ev to the north.

If implemented, the southern West Bank would be completely cut off from the north, making a future contiguous Palestinian state nearly impossible. It would essentially see the Israeli municipal boundaries of Jerusalem extend to the boundaries of Jericho.

Palestinian cartographer Khalil al-Tafakji warned Palestinian media outlets that opening the new road serves as a “prelude to displacing Palestinians from the area and starting settlement construction in the so-called E1 corridor”.

Israeli NGO Ir Amim said in a press release that the road was the “brainchild” of former Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, and was designed to “solve the dilemma of E-1 splitting the West Bank into northern and southern enclaves by using road infrastructure to preserve a semblance of contiguity between Ramallah and Bethlehem.”

By allowing Palestinians to still navigate between Ramallah and Bethlehem — in a very indirect manner —  while diverting them from both the E-1 area and Jerusalem, the road eliminates a significant Palestinian presence.

Ir Amim says the opening of the road should be cause for “heightened vigilance,” and that while routing Palestinian traffic away from Jerusalem and E-1, the new road also “affords two key benefits for Israelis: 1) expediting traffic flow to Jerusalem for settlers from the Ramallah area and 2) enabling expansion of the settlement bloc around Ramallah.”

“While legislative initiatives like the Greater Jerusalem Bill and other plans designed to redraw the boundaries of the city may be stalled, infrastructure projects have already proven an effective tool for increasing connectivity between the blocs and the city, not only by solidifying physical linkages but also by eroding the boundaries of the city in the Israeli public consciousness,” the group said.

SHORT VIDEO — THE TRUTH ABOUT JEWS AND ARABS

A must watch FaceBook video ….

This is a very difficult video to make.

As I reflect back on my 1,000 day journey, I wanted to share with you one moment that stands out. But this time, I wanted to show you what happened next. 

Don’t let a few bad apples ruin it for everybody on both sides. When Israelis and Palestinians make peace, I am confident the entire world’s happiness levels will rise by 10%. It’s a global issue. It’s so important. I hope this video helps shed light on these relationships.

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