For the sake of both Israel and the Palestinians, we must save Israel from itself. Living in South Africa under apartheid, I saw boycott efforts encourage public awareness, apply pressure and state disapproval for the government’s racist policies. Israeli historian Ilan Pappe has said boycotts “will not change positions in a day, but they will send a clear message to the Israeli public that these positions are racist and unacceptable … They would have to choose.” Angela Goldfrey-Goldstein comments. Read more about The tide is turning
Abu Musa had to go back to his shack, under threat of demolition and ethnic transfer by the Wall and army (the very un-Civil Administration!), to find 20,000 shekels for treatment. If he does, he can go back and try to save his leg and life. Then he can start saving $15,000 for a back operation he hasn’t been able to afford for the past two years, without which he won’t get back on his legs — if one hasn’t had to be amputated by then. He’s only 52. His heart is starting to go. Abu Musa was told long ago by an Israeli professor that he needed an operation on his back. He was badly beaten by Israeli Border Police, when homes - tin and cardboard shacks — were bulldozed on his hillside. Read more about No right to health: Abu Musa Jahalin's story
Of the 250,000 Israeli citizens living in over a hundred West Bank settlements, (not counting 200,000 settlers in occupied East Jerusalem), only one-third will face evacuation, says Leggett. “Many may be offered relocation to the large settlement blocs Israel plans to retain. … Perhaps the most sensitive issue will be the question of Jerusalem. Palestinians claim the city as their future capital and say that must be reflected in any resolution to the Mideast’s core conflict. The U.S. has generally supported the Palestinian position during previous peace negotiations.” Read more about Ehud Olmert's "convergence plan"
Last week, The Guardian (UK) published a two-part series by its reporter Chris McGreal comparing Israeli policies vis-a-vis its own Palestinian citizens and those living under its occupation in the West Bank (including East Jerusalem) and Gaza Strip to that of apartheid-era South Africa. The following is a letter to The Guardian editor from a peace activist who has been a part of society and the struggle for human rights in both countries who finds that the questions posed by The Guardian necessary for ensuring a truly secure future. Read more about Israel and Apartheid South Africa: A response to Guardian series on the relationship between the two
Madonna - Esther, shalom, salaam, welcome. On behalf of Israeli Jews, and Palestinian or Israeli Christians and Muslims seriously opposed to your highly controversial visit, we ask you, with compassion, to reconsider the consequences of coming to Israel/Palestine in this context. This visit takes you to the heart of Occupied Territory in Bethlehem: a closed-off prison, a ghetto, whose civilians now have no work, no freedom, no life. They’ve finished their savings, live now on food handouts from foreign donor agencies. They’ve had their land taken, they have no justice through the courts, this entire city of ordinary folk trying to live a decent life, is imprisoned, while Israel calls the shots. Read more about Open letter to Madonna
A settler group, Women in Green, has taken to spying on MachsomWatch at checkpoints, taking cookies and Cokes to “our boys in green” or, in the Gaza settlements, doing the soldiers’ laundry. Meanwhile, on various occasions, settlers (including Daniela Weiss, lady mayor of Kedumim settlement near Nablus) have physically attacked MachsomWatch groups. Now, anonymous right-wingers have set up a tastelessly fake version of MachsomWatch’s website. The fake “dot com” site is used as a platform for ultra-right wing propaganda of a typically odious nature. Angela Godfrey-Goldstein reports. Read more about Ultra-right establish fake MachsomWatch website