The Electronic Intifada

Dancing to Sharon's tune

Hasan Abu Nimah
29 June 2005

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EI contributor Hasan Abu Nimah examines the Israeli plan for “disengagement” from Gaza. While American, European and Arab diplomats pretend the Gaza plan is an achievement of the “peace process” and a step in fulfilling the Road Map, Abu Nimah argues that it is nothing of the sort. Israel is being forced to withdraw only because of stiff Palestinian resistance. At the same time, Israel is trying to extract a price for leaving Gaza and impose additional costs, burdens and conditions on the Palestinians. Will Israel be allowed to turn defeat into victory?

Israeli soldier convicted for killing Tom Hurndall

28 June 2005

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On Monday 27 June 2005 a military court convicted Israeli Sergeant Taysir Wahid of the “manslaughter” of British peace activist and photographer Tom Hurndall. On April 11, 2003, Hurndall was shot in the head and suffered irreversible brain damage, dying from his wound a year later. Wahid was convicted of a total of six charges, including obstructing justice and providing false testimony as well as conduct unbecoming a soldier. A sentencing hearing is to be held on July 5. The court found that Taysir shot Hurndall with a sniper rifle using a telescopic sight, adding that the soldier gave a “confused and even pathetic” version of events.

Israeli land seizures undercut hopes for peace

Abu Murad Manasra
24 June 2005

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The realities that Palestinians experience in West Bank villages contradict hopes for peace and instead signal a deepening of Israel’s occupation. The Israeli army recently delivered a seizure order to Wadi Foquin and three neighboring villages about 12 miles southwest of Bethlehem for 189 acres of our land. The army justifies this seizure as necessary to prevent terrorist attacks and to build a security wall. The order has left our small village in crisis, its very existence threatened. Wadi Foquin lost 80 percent of its original land when Israel was established in 1948. Later, the creation of the Israeli settlement of Betar Illit consumed about 175 acres of village land. The army now wants to seize the remaining property.

Palestinians placed between false choices

Hasan Abu Nimah
23 June 2005

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For some time the Palestinians have been divided on how to pursue their cause. Their choice, it seems, is between winning the support and favour of the international community and actually pursuing their rights, but not both, writes EI contributor Hasan Abu Nimah. The Palestinian Authority, and its leader Mahmoud Abbas, seem to have accepted the false choices placed before them, allowing others to define the struggle for Palestinian rights as illegitimate and “terrorist.” As the PA is increasingly impotent and irrelevant, a passive international community sits idly by, while Israel continues to create facts on the ground.

Haifa, peaceful town with a silent pain

Adri Nieuwhof and
Jeff Handmaker
21 June 2005

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Haifa has attracted many Palestinians from the North, in addition to the residents that remained in Haifa after 1948. But, a considerable number of Haifa’s Palestinian residents had lived in Haifa for decades without having been defined as legal residents of Haifa in the population registry. The unofficial estimation of the Palestinian population in Haifa is around 30,000, leaving around 6,000 Palestinians officially unrecognised. Around 121,000 Palestinians were dispossessed from Haifa and from 58 surrounding villages. Adri Nieuwhof and Jeff Handmaker visited Haifa and give voice to those who remained and those dispossessed.

Free Adnan Abdallah!

Nina Mayorek
19 June 2005

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Only a few of the 420 Palestinian prisoners recently released numbered among the nearly 700 prisoners currently serving administrative detention orders. Adnan Na’im ‘Abdallah, age 31, is married without children and has been held in detention without charge or trial by the Israeli army for two and a half years. Nina Mayorek started a campaign to release Adnan. Adnan lives between 9m cement walls in the Negev desert. The detention camp is divided into cages with 120 prisoners living in tents inside each cage. Adnan’s cage separates him from the world.

History's Greatest Reoccuring Hoax: Colonization "For Security Reasons"

Rima Merriman
16 June 2005

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In Gaza and north of the West Bank, the Israelis are taking down what should never have been put up in the first place (their illegal settlements), all the while muttering, “they haven’t made us do it; we are doing it on our own”. On the West Bank, the Israelis are busy constructing what must in future be taken down and the US taxpayer is footing the bill! Day by day, what will have to be dismantled grows, concrete slab by concrete slab, what has to be “withdrawn” proliferates, and there is no one to stop it or even to protest against it.

The Case for Israel, a Critical Review

Feroze Sidhwa
15 June 2005

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The Case for Israel lacks objectivity, to say the least. Dershowitz treats evidence in much the same way Joan Peters does in From Time Immemorial, and the results are similar. Like Peters, Dershowitz selects facts to suit his theses. He employs distortion and fabrication while contending elsewhere that he knows the evidence he presents is distorted and falsified. He misconstrues sources in a tendentious manner. He draws hard conclusions from tenuous evidence. He adduces evidence that in no way supports his claims, even omitting “inconvenient” portions of quotations without inserting ellipses. He quotes sources completely out of context.

A better strategy for the Palestinian Authority

Hasan Abu Nimah
15 June 2005

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In Palestinian-Israeli politics, Israel remembers that there are certain mutual understandings used to manage the troubled relationship only when Palestinians take actions that anger the Israelis. Only in such circumstances does Israel complain of threats to the roadmap, the Sharm El Sheikh understandings, or even the entire peace process. When the Palestinians do whatever they are asked, however, such understandings and frameworks suddenly cease to exist. EI contributor Hasan Abu Nimah looks at current Palestinian Authority strategy and considers alternatives.

Conference Critiques Negotiation Tactics of Palestinians and Israelis

Evan Hays
13 June 2005

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On June 7, 2005, the United States Institute for Peace held a conference entitled “How Israelis and Palestinians Negotiate: A Cross-Cultural Analysis of the Oslo Peace Process” that attempted to enunciate to the public a more in-depth understanding of the failure of the negotiations that took place at Camp David in the year 2000 and, more broadly, the Oslo peace process. Rather than simply reflecting on the issues that proved to be sticking points in the negotiations, the speakers attempted to evaluate the flaws that typified the negotiation styles of both Palestinians and Israelis, differences that dramatically flared up when they came together in at Camp David.

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