The Electronic Intifada

VIDEO: Protests in Bil'in

Khaled Sabawi
18 November 2005

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On Friday November 11th 2005, the residence of the Palestinian village of Bil’in, along with international and Israeli activists, rallied at the center of the village to prepare for their weekly act of civil disobedience and non-violent protest. Bil’in was once a small peaceful village located high on the hills of Palestine, inside the West Bank and north of Jerusalem. For thirty-eight years, a brutal Israeli military occupation has subjected the village of Bil’in, along with the entire West Bank, to unrelenting violence, seizures, curfews, and land appropriations that have violated the Palestinian peoples’ basic civil and human rights. The wall has now reached the village of Bil’in, threatening to cut the villagers off from two thirds of their land.

Israel's uglier face reared towards its Palestinain citizens

Avigail Abarbanel
17 November 2005

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Susan Nathan’s new book The Other Side of Israel: My Journey Across the Jewish/Arab Divide recalls her recent experience of making Aliya to Israel, claiming her right to immediate citizenship according to the Israeli law of return. Growing up in a Zionist home and having had more than one or two experiences of antisemitism, Nathan is at first enchanted with Zionism and in love with the idea of the State of Israel and what she believes it represents. However, it isn’t long before that bubble bursts and she begins to see the less than ideal reality of Israel.

Of transplants and transcendence: Questioning social and symbolic categories in Israel

Laurie King
14 November 2005

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“What is more perplexing and amazing? Four dehumanized individuals blowing themselves and sixty other people to bits, or the wondrous lesson in humanity shown by a family that would not have been blamed for seeking revenge, but who instead repaid murder with magnanimity by donating the organs of their son, a non-Jew, to Israelis? The minds of murderers, whether Jewish, Christian or Muslim; American, Israeli or Arab, are much easier to understand than the actions of Ahmed Khatib’s family. Unlike suicide bombers or IDF snipers, Ahmed’s family violated the grammar of the conflict and exposed the arbitrariness and barbarity of erecting walls, whether actual or metaphorical, between human beings.”

London hosts conference "Palestine, Israel and the Law"

Victor Kattan and
Mary Nazzal-Batayneh
11 November 2005

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On Saturday 22 October, hundreds of people from all over the United Kingdom descended on the Institute of Education in Logan Hall, Bedford Way, London, to discuss Israel, Palestine and the law. For six hours delegates sat and listened as politicians, lawyers and governmental advisors took to the podium in front a banner carrying the name of the event’s organizers, the “Palestine Solidarity Campaign”. The speakers included Dr. Mustafa Barghouti, Diana Buttu, Daniel Machover, Leah Tsemel. Victor Kattan and Mary Nazzal-Batayneh report for EI.

Administrative detention should be banned (2/2)

Jeff Handmaker and
Adri Nieuwhof
11 November 2005

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Israel has a long history of detaining people without trial, quite often for long periods, based on an administrative instead of judicial order based on secret evidence. Israel’s policy on administrative detention is not only grossly immoral, but it also leads to the violation of numerous principles and binding obligations of international law. In recent weeks, there have been several confirmed reports that hundreds of people have been administratively detained, though it is virtually impossible to determine the exact number. Jeff Handmaker and Adri Nieuwhof believe that human rights advocates should raise their voices anew against the injustices caused by the use of administrative detention.

Administrative detention should be banned (1/2)

Jeff Handmaker and
Adri Nieuwhof
11 November 2005

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Israel has a long history of detaining people without trial, quite often for long periods, based on an administrative instead of judicial order based on secret evidence. Israel’s policy on administrative detention is not only grossly immoral, but it also leads to the violation of numerous principles and binding obligations of international law. In recent weeks, there have been several confirmed reports that hundreds of people have been administratively detained, though it is virtually impossible to determine the exact number. Jeff Handmaker and Adri Nieuwhof believe that human rights advocates should raise their voices anew against the injustices caused by the use of administrative detention.

Givers and Takers: The case of international aid to Palestine

Stuart Reigeluth
10 November 2005

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The greatest cause of contemporary Palestinian poverty is, without a doubt, the overwhelming Israeli occupation. International aid has played a pivotal role in attempting to alleviate this recent phenomenon, but many questions persist. Who gives such large amounts of financial assistance to the occupied Palestinian territories (OPT) and who takes from the Palestinian people? What are the donors’ motivations for these monetary injections and how effective has the implementation of these funds been? And why does foreign aid continue to increase while the Palestinian economy continues to stagnate? Such questions are tackled in the new book Aid, Diplomacy and Facts on the Ground; the Case of Palestine.

The hudna no one wants

Hasan Abu Nimah
11 November 2005

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The second hudna (truce) between the Palestinians and their occupiers underlines the staggering and ridiculous state of the so-called “peace process”. Every time an incident occurs, the chorus from all directions can be heard that it “may endanger the peace process.” Nothing much has changed recently, except that the “hudna” has taken the place of the “peace process” in this sterile game. But dealing with them as if they were real has served an important political purpose for those who certainly know better. EI contributor Hasan Abu Nimah says that all the diplo-babble about the truce may be soothing, but blinds us from seeing the cancer grow beyond cure.

Ex-car thief aims to revive business in Gaza

Yasser Abu Moailek
8 November 2005

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Abdel Rahman sat on a sand dune near the northern borders of the Gaza Strip, looking around the vast expanses of land that was once the Jewish settlement Eli Sinai. He moved his sight northwards over to the distant Israeli city of Ashkelon, and released a sigh. “This area was my main base of operations. We were very rich, but the fighting brought our business to its knees,” he said. Abdel Rahman once headed a large car theft ring in Gaza. He said he was not afraid of Palestinian and Israeli law enforcements. He said his “business” brought benefits to both sides and supported many families along the way. Stealing Israeli cars and smuggling them to Gaza emerged notably after the signing of the Oslo peace accords in 1993.

The Wall - an obstacle to educating Palestinian youth

Adri Nieuwhof and
Jeff Handmaker
7 November 2005

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The United Nations Human Rights Special Rapporteur for the Palestinian territories, John Dugard, wrote in a report in August this year, with respect to human rights in the Palestinian territories, that “the quality of education has deteriorated because schools have been obliged to shorten teaching hours as a result of wall gate-opening times. Furthermore, children are forced to drop out of school either to help supplement diminishing family incomes or because their parents can no longer afford to send them to school.” The wall blocks free access to schools on both sides of the wall. Traversing checkpoints on the way to school or university is a burden to both students and teachers.

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