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South Beirut after a month of bombing

BEIRUT - At first, heavy silence hang over Haret Hreik and other areas of south Beirut early on Tuesday morning as scenes of an apocalypse emerged from the thick smoke and smell of fresh gunpowder. Then one could discern signs of life - women weeping as they inspected what were once their homes and other fragments of their lives, all destroyed by heavy bombing by the Israeli army during the 34-day conflict between Israel and the armed wing of the Lebanese political party Hezbollah. 

Israel's freeze of familiy unification in the Occupied Territories splits tens of thousands of Palestinian families

Today, B’Tselem and HaMoked: Center for the Defence of the Individual, are publishing Perpetual Limbo, a report on Israel ‘s policy freezing family unification for Palestinians in the Occupied Territories . Although the policy affects almost every Palestinian family living in the Occupied Territories , it is unknown to the Israeli public. 

Smoke and Resolutions

Two days ago, my mother and I watched a building disappear. We had been taking a walk around our house in a mountain above southern Beirut when we saw it - the mad cluster of life, mediated through concrete buildings of different heights, starting at the coastline and spilling inwards. The city. It lay there, exposed. At first it was difficult for my American mother to discern where Beirut “proper” ended and its southern suburbs began. It all looks the same from a distance, especially from an elevated one. 

This will probably be my last letter to you

This will probably be my last letter to you. I will miss you all. Some of you I never met, but I feel that you are all so close to me. More than that, you probably already know it — without you I would not have made it throughout this hell. You were there by my side and that made me stronger. Every day, you gave more meaning to all this — peoples’ stories were heard, peoples’ suffering was shared. This was what I could do for my people: tell some of their stories. Knowing that you would listen, knowing that you would care made the whole difference. 

Nablus: Patients pay the price of embargo

NABLUS — Five months after an international embargo was imposed on the Palestinian National Authority (PNA), the West Bank is facing a health crisis as pharmaceuticals and medical supplies become increasingly scarce. “We’re facing severe shortages of 13 important drugs,” said Dr Lou’ay Shaheen, head of the cancer ward at the National Hospital in Nablus. “In the past two weeks, nine of these drugs were made available, but quantities still aren’t sufficient for all the patients.” 

"People with nothing are helping people with nothing"

TYRE — As the war in Lebanon continues, Palestine refugees are also feeling the burn of the attacks in this ancient city and district declared a UNESCO world heritage site in 1979. The camps are struggling with diminishing supplies of food, water and medicine. “We have been waiting for months now for a shipment of medicine and critical supplies, but with the onset of war, I doubt it will ever arrive now,” said Mohammed Farmawi, an official with the United Nations Relief and Works Agency. 

The last day of attack, the first day of the unknown

It is 7:45 in the morning, Ras Beirut. Two explosions wake us up. We run to the TV set. “Is it on Dahiyeh? No, they sound like the flyers’ explosions.” Nothing on the news. Then another, louder explosion and paper rain starts to fall on us. All the neighborhood are out on their verandas looking at them as they drop from the sky. “What is in there?” A father shouts at his son to go get one. Two workers pick one up, they start to read out loud: “To the Lebanese: We would like to inform you that we are going back to hit Hizbullah, Syria and Iran! Signed, Israeli Defence Force.” 

It's time for Jewish dissenters to challenge Israeli policies

I grew up Jewish in Beirut. Although I left nearly 40 years ago, my memories of Lebanon — vibrant and multicultural — have stayed with me. And so, my wife and I had started talking about taking a trip there. I would show her the neighborhood where I grew up, the beaches where I swam in the warm Mediterranean waters and the small mountain hotel we loved to stay at in the summer. I would also show her my school, where Jewish, Christian and Muslim children learned and grew together. After the past few weeks, we may never be able to take this trip. 

Israeli activist wounded at Wall protest

On August 11th, 2006, at a little past 1 PM, around 400 people were marching in a peaceful protest towards the wall in Bil’in, the outskirts of Ramallah. International Solidarity Movement activists, Palestinians, and Israeli Anarchist Activists all join together in this weekly march to the wall in Bil’in. Soldiers surprised us by meeting us half way, they were aggressively stationed inside the village, outside Palestinian homes.