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TitleDescriptionDate
Palestine in Pictures: July 2020EI - "One Palestinian was killed by Israeli occupation forces during the month of July. Ibrahim Abu Yaqoub, 29, was shot in the neck by soldiers, who claimed that the slain man and a companion were throwing Molotov cocktails at an army post" [ry] 3/8/2020
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Log In Register Israeli restaurants vs. PM Netanyahu: 1-0 Mazal Mualem - Al-Monitor - It all began on the afternoon of July 17. A group of Israel’s leading chefs forced the government to overturn a decision it had made just a few hours earlier to close all restaurants in an effort to respond to a spike in the spread of the coronavirus. The original decision was infuriating to these restauranteurs. Their refrigerators were filled with expensive foodstuffs, purchased in preparation for the weekend. With the realization that the food would now go to waste was one step too far for a sector that suffered one of the worst blows since the coronavirus pandemic started in March. For months, these restaurants, bars and cafes were forced to shutter their doors without any adequate compensation for their losses. Many of these businesses shut down entirely. Others are now teetering on bankruptcy. Even the country’s finest chefs are trapped in the uncertainty of this miserable new reality. This time, however, their response was different. Posts and video clips started popping up on social networks, announcing that restaurants have no plans to follow the government’s overbearing instructions. Others started taking food out of their refrigerators and donating it to the needy. These protests were then documented on social media — the restauranteurs were desperate. (rh) 28/7/2020
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Demand an end to the harassment of Palestinian scientists and academics and an immediate release of prof. Imad BarghouthiThe Action Network - On Thursday, July 16th 2020, Professor Barghouthi, an astrophysicist at the university of Al-Quds [1] in East Jerusalem was detained [2] by Israeli military forces at a military checkpoint outside of Anata while he was travelling from the university campus to his home in Ramallah. He is now being kept in an Israeli detention facility, prohibited from contact with his dear wife and children. No charges have been brought against him and he faces the potential threat of administrative detention. Administrative detention [3], an illegal measure used arbitrarily by the Israeli military forces to detain Palestinians without any charges or trials. If charges were to be placed against him, he would face trial by an Israeli military court, which notoriously has conviction rates of almost 100% [4]. This arrest is not an isolated case. Prof. Barghouthi, one of Palestine’s most prominent scientists, was placed under administrative detention for two months [5] in 2014, and was again detained for six months [6] in 2016. Mr. Ubai Aboudi (a US citizen), the director of the Bisan Center for Research and Development, was abducted from his home in November 2019 and placed in administrative detention. He remains in prison to this day. Both Prof. Barghouthi and Mr. Aboudi have worked with S4P on our international meetings and schools in Palestine, and their arrest and detention seriously hinders our work supporting science in Palestine. (rh)28/7/2020
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The cultural importance of Peter BeinartYAKOV HIRSCH - Mondoweiss - In his recent essay arguing for equal rights for Israelis and Palestinians, Peter Beinart says the Jewish dehumanization of the Palestinians is the biggest threat to a peaceful future for Israelis and Palestinians, and he points to the misinterpretation of the Holocaust as a reason for that dehumanization. This “Holocaust lens,” Beinart claims, is what makes it so difficult for Jews to see Palestinians as created “b’tselem Elohim,” in the image of God. That dehumanization includes the idea that Palestinians are motivated by antisemitism in their opposition to Israel. The claim, Beinart says, is a function of “Jewish trauma.” And, Beinart argues, it says more about us than it does about them (rh)28/7/2020
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Activists to picket police minister’s home after he tells cops to quash rallieMICHAEL BACHNER - The Times of Israel - Leaders of the protest movement against Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced Monday that they will stage a protest Tuesday evening outside the home of Public Security Minister Amir Ohana after he was recorded pressuring police brass to step up enforcement against demonstrators. Responding to the recordings, which were aired Sunday evening by the Kan public broadcaster, the Black Flag movement said they “exposed the plot by the Netanyahu family’s police minister to block the citizen protest.” (rh)28/7/2020
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IDF says it foiled Hezbollah attack along Lebanese border; no Israeli injuriesJUDAH ARI GROSS - The Times of Israel - The Israel Defense Forces said it thwarted a Hezbollah attack in the Mount Dov area on Monday afternoon, opening fire at a number of fighters from the terror group that entered Israeli territory. No Israeli soldiers were injured, and the IDF denied Lebanese media reports that a Kornet anti-tank guided missile was fired at an Israeli tank on Mount Dov, also known as Shebaa Farms, an area that Israel, Lebanon and Syria each claim as its own.(rh)28/7/2020
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‘Cancel culture’ letter is about stifling free speech, not protecting itJONATHAN COOK - Mondoweiss - An open letter published by Harper’s magazine, and signed by 150 prominent writers and public figures, has focused attention on the apparent dangers of what has been termed a new “cancel culture”. The letter brings together an unlikely alliance of genuine leftists, such as Noam Chomsky and Matt Karp, centrists such as J K Rowling and Ian Buruma, and neoconservatives such as David Frum and Bari Weiss, all speaking out in defence of free speech. Although the letter doesn’t explicitly use the term “cancel culture”, it is clearly what is meant in the complaint about a “stifling” cultural climate that is imposing “ideological conformity” and weakening “norms of open debate and toleration of differences”. (rh)14/7/2020
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How vulnerable is Netanyahu? A right-wing backbencher gives PM cause for worryHAVIV RETTIG GUR - The Times of Israel - Conventional wisdom about the current government holds that the great winner and dominant actor in Israeli politics is Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Eleven years on the job, he is, after all, still the prime minister. But a sudden legislative row in the Knesset on Wednesday demonstrated the limits of Netanyahu’s power and laid bare his growing political vulnerability. The row began with an obvious trap laid for Netanyahu by the right-wing Yamina party. Yamina made the fateful choice back in May to walk away from their alliance with Netanyahu and Likud, deeming their unity government with Blue and White “leftist” and vowing to serve as a fighting opposition. It was the first time in the opposition for the faction’s five MKs, but they’ve taken to the role with relish. (rh)14/7/2020
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Netanyahu Barred from Naming Police, Judges Due to Corruption Trialyasasmedia - The Palestine Chronicle - Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has been prevented from appointing police and judicial officials due to his corruption trial, Anadolu Agency reported. On Thursday, the Israeli government’s legal adviser, Avichai Mandelblit, informed Netanyahu of the ban on appointing senior officials in the judiciary and police. The Times of Israel quoted Mandelblit as saying: “Netanyahu must not be involved in the nomination of judges or the police commissioner, as well as any other appointments that would meddle with the work of the state prosecution, the Attorney General’s Office, or police investigations.” (rh) 14/7/2020
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Prominent journalist, Netanyahu critic, loses TV jobAssociated Press - Ynetnews - Barak Ravid, Channel 13 TV’s diplomatic correspondent, was among nearly 40 people who received dismissal letters from the station. Ravid has gained a reputation for breaking stories about Israel’s relations with the U.S., the European Union and other foreign partners. His reporting has upset Netanyahu at times, and the prime minister has publicly rebuked Ravid in the past. (rh) 14/7/2020
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Israeli police break up anti-Netanyahu protest in JerusalemAssociated Press - Ynetnews - The demonstrators have staged a sit-in outside Netanyahu`s official residence in Jerusalem for the past month, calling on him to resign while facing corruption charges. They said police used excessive force to dismantle the sit-in while opposition politicians decried the move as a restriction of free expression. (rh)14/7/2020
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‘Strange Procedure’: Ahmed Dawabsheh, Child Survivor of Duma Arson Attack Summoned by Israeli CourtPalestine Chronicle Staff - Palestine Chronicle - “It’s a strange procedure. It means that they want to question the child. He was five at the time of the incident, I don’t know what the court expects of him under these circumstances,” Hamaisi said. Hamaisi added, “The welfare of the child is the foremost consideration, so we dispensed with his testimony at (an earlier) stage, and he did not relate what his life is like. We’re surprised that the court is now summoning him to testify, even though he’s not part of this case.” (rh)14/7/2020
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Annex and Disposses - Use of the Absentees’ Property Law to Dispossess Palestinians of their PropertyHagit Ofran - Peace Now - This report examines various Israeli governments’ use of the Absentees’ Property Law in East Jerusalem, to dispossess Palestinians of their properties and to populate them with settlers. The method worked as follows: Settler-related bodies recruited people to declare that the owners of certain properties were absentee landlords. These affidavits were passed onto the Custodian for Absentees’ Property, who deemed that they were indeed absentees’ assets without any further inspection. Thereafter, the absentees’ assets were passed onto the JNF, which passed them onto settlers. The Palestinian families living in these properties discovered that their homes were sold by the state to settlers, upon receiving lawsuits from the settlers or the JNF by the mail, demanding that they vacate the house. [bz]9/7/2020
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Hundreds of “investigations” in a decade, whitewashing and absurd punishmentEyal Sagiv - B`Tselem - On 30 May 2020, Israeli Border Police officers fatally shot 31-year-old Iyad al-Halaq, a Palestinian from Wadi al-Joz in East Jerusalem. The young man, who was on the autistic spectrum, was on his way to the Elwyn Al Quds Center for individuals with disabilities, which he frequented daily.This killing may be special, but it is far from the only one. The only exceptional thing is that since al-Halaq had special needs, he was not posthumously “convicted” of “terrorism”. This charge, which is automatically levelled at almost any Palestinian killed by Israeli security forces, is used to retroactively justify the shooting – even if the individual did not pose a threat that required deadly force. [ak]9/7/2020
FACT SHEET: The Sumarin Family Home in Jerusalem and Why it MattersDonna Baranski-Walker - Rebuilding Alliance - We are concerned [for the Sumarin family, but also] that, if the government of Israel permits the misapplication of the Absentee Property Law in the case of the Sumarin family, it will be emboldened to further improperly apply it in any area that Israel acquires unilaterally, through the proposed annexation of West Bank territories. [bz]9/7/2020
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Exactly how much is Benjamin Netanyahu worth?Gad Lior,Zvi Zerahia,CTech - Ynetnews - While Israel struggles with the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and the resulting economic crisis, the Knesset`s Finance Committee on Tuesday approved a request from the Prime Minister`s Office for a retroactive tax return worth about NIS 1 million (approx. $291,000) for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, which come from the state coffers. According to the committee`s decision, income tax paid by the prime minister until December 31, 2017 will be returned to Netanyahu from the Treasury, due to a clause that allows the state to fund an incumbent prime minister`s administrative costs, services and benefits.(rh)7/7/2020
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‘Deal of the Century’ is War Crime: Canadian Lawyer Seeks ICC Investigation on Behalf of Palestinian VictimsPalestine Chronicle Staff - Palestine Chronicle - A respected human rights lawyer submitted a request to the International Criminal Court (ICC) on Tuesday calling for an investigation of US and Israeli officials citing allegations of war crimes committed against the Palestinian people. William Schabas, a professor of international law at Middlesex University in London, “filed a lengthy Article 15 communication with the ICC’s Office of the Prosecutor (OTP) .. asking for an investigation of the architects of the so-called ‘Deal of the Century’,” Commondreams news portal reported on Friday.(rh) 7/7/2020
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Is Apartheid the Inevitable Outcome of Zionism?Henry Siegman - Responsible Statecraft - the failure of the peace process has not been the consequence of recent mindless and destructive actions by Donald Trump and of the clownish shenanigans of his son-in-law, Jared Kushner, who was charged with helping Israeli hardliners in nailing down permanently the Palestinian occupation. For all the damage they caused (mainly to Palestinians), prospects for a two-state solution actually ended during President Barack Obama’s administration, despite Secretary of State John Kerry’s energetic efforts to renew the stalled negotiations. They were not resumed because Obama, like his predecessors, failed to take the tough measures that were necessary to overcome Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s determination to prevent the emergence of a Palestinian state, notwithstanding his pledge in his Bar-Ilan speech of 2009 to implement the agreements of the Oslo accords.(rh) 7/7/2020
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Ehud Olmert to `Post`: Israel is becoming a fascist countryEhud Olmert - Jerusalem Post - Sliding down the slippery slope to fascism always starts with slight steps. Sometimes they’re so small that they are out of sight and invisible to the public consciousness. Their maturation period can be quite protracted, and they can manage to stay under the radar of public attention and out of the eye of the media, too, even though the media is supposed to be more sensitive. At some point, after an incubation period, the buds of fascism begin to sprout and push forth from within the soil. From this point on, they can grow quite quickly, sometimes so quickly that it’s hard to stop them from contaminating everyone around them. (rh) 7/7/2020
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Has Israel lost control over coronavirus pandemic?Rina Bassist - Al-Monitor - Early this morning, the Knesset Law Committee voted in favor of a bill advanced by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to increase the fine for not wearing a face mask in public from 200 Israeli shekels ($58) to 500 shekels ($145). In order to be enacted, the bill must now be approved by the Knesset plenum. The coalition intends to bring it to vote already this evening, but might have to delay it after several lawmakers complained against the rushed proceedings. The lawmakers also contested the intention of the government to bring for Knesset approval within 48 hours the "big corona law," which will broaden the Cabinet’s authorities in curbing the outbreak. (rh) 7/7/2020
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Despite coronavirus outbreak: Israel ramps up demolition of West Bank Palestinian homes in JuneB`Tselem - In April, Israel pledged before the UN not to demolish homes as long as the health crisis was underway and isolation guidelines were in place... [bz]7/7/2020
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Palestine in Pictures: June 2020EI - “Two dozen Palestinians have died by Israeli fire so far this year. One Israeli, a soldier, was killed in the context of the occupation during the same period” [ry] 6/7/2020
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