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  • The true story behind this iconic photo that became a symbol of gender equality in the Zionist movement
    The granddaughter of female pioneer seen in shorts in a quarry in Mandatory Palestine reveals that the ’propaganda’ scene was in fact staged
    Ofer Aderet | Jun. 25, 2020 | 2:19 PM

    Among the handful of surviving photographs depicting female pioneers during the pre-state British Mandate period, one of the best known is a picture of Aviva Alef.

    She was photographed in the summer of 1941 next to an open rail-cart full of rocks at a quarry at Kibbutz Ein Harod. The man who took the image was Zoltan Kluger, one of the greatest photographers in the country at the time, and who documented the Jewish state in the making for various Zionist organizations.

    Over the years, the iconic photo became a symbol of groundbreaking female equality in the Zionist movement. Just this week, however, 79 years after it was taken, Aviva Alef’s granddaughter decided to reveal the true story behind the picture, which is now in the official photography collection of the State of Israel.

    “My grandmother became a symbol of female pioneers against her will,” her granddaughter, Yael Avrahami, told Haaretz.

    Avrahami called the photograph “propaganda.”

    In contemporary Israel, every year when the weather warms up, a controversy resurfaces in the country’s schools over the appropriate length of female students’ shorts. “Someone recalled the picture and retrieved it from the archives,” noted Avrahami, a biblical studies lecturer at the Oranim Academic College of Education in Kiryat Tivon, northern Israel.

    The photo became part of an effort to demonstrate how “things had been different here” at one time, how women went around freely in short-shorts. It turned Avrahami’s grandmother into a symbol to be emulated.

    ‘Rebellious girl’

    “Let me tell you the real story about that picture,” Avrahami wrote Monday on Facebook, recounting how her grandmother, born Lotte Perschak, fled Czechoslovakia at age 17 after the outbreak of World War II. She immigrated to Mandatory Palestine with Youth Aliyah, a Zionist organization that at the time rescued young Jews from Europe and brought them to the Holy Land.

    “Here she was arbitrarily given the name Aviva. She settled at Kibbutz Beit Hashita in the Harod Valley and thought she was coming to an agricultural dorm and that she would return home at the end of the war. A very innocent young girl,” Avrahami wrote.

    But she also quickly discovered less pleasant aspects of the pioneering enterprise that had saved her life at a time when her family was sent to the Theresienstadt concentration camp.

    “In Youth Aliyah, you weren’t allowed to speak your native language. Everyone had to speak Hebrew,” the granddaughter recounted. Aviva was caught speaking Czech with her friend one day, and as a punishment was “exiled” to work in the rock quarry next to the adjacent kibbutz, Ein Harod – “as was befitting for a rebellious girl.”

    The punishment was meted out, Avrahami said, by two adults in charge: Tikva Sarig, a kindergarten teacher, children’s author and the wife of Nahum Sarig (who later became the commander of the Negev Brigade of the pre-state Palmach elite strike force); and Aryeh Ben-Gurion, the nephew of Israel’s first prime minister.

    But unlike male pioneers, and contrary to what the famous photograph suggests, “she didn’t drive rail carts with rocks and didn’t blast rocks. She cooked and did laundry for the male pioneers,” her granddaughter disclosed.

    On the day Kluger arrived to take pictures of the pioneers, “girls’ legs suited him for the picture,” as Avrahami put it – meaning that the iconic photo was staged.

    “Men are less sexy and my grandmother’s legs were legendary,” Avrahami said. “My grandfather once said she had the prettiest legs in the valley.”

    At age 20, Aviva gave birth to a son. That son’s daughter is Yael Avrahami.

    “My grandmother was saved from the horrors of the world war by the pioneering that was forced upon her. But it’s hard to look nostalgically upon the shorts in the picture and think that anything was perfect at the time,” the granddaughter wrote, “that the world saw her for what she was and not for her beautiful legs.

    “The shorts are not the be-all and end-all,” Avrahami added.

    Aviva’s parents didn’t survive the Holocaust. Her brother survived Auschwitz and married a Catholic nurse who had taken care of him, but he died relatively young behind the Iron Curtain.

    Aviva married journalist Yitzhak Avrahami at Beit Hashita and had a son. The couple divorced and Aviva made her way to Kibbutz Ayelet Hashahar, where she married Haim Alef and took his surname. “She would work in various jobs at the kibbutz, including being in charge of purchasing at the grocery. She also worked for many years in the sewing workshop,” Avrahami recounted.

    Aviva Alef died 18 years ago. One of the stories she told her granddaughter has bothered Yael Avrahami to this day.

    “She once told me that they needed to guard the watchtowers in the valley. The immigrant girls, who were afraid to do guard duty alone, were forced ‘to kiss’ male pioneers who would come along to stand guard with them at night. ‘Kissing’ is all she told me. I hope it wasn’t more than that,” Avrahami said.


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  • Israel suspends police phone-tracking for coronavirus quarantine - Israel News - Haaretz.com

    Law enforcement now to use surprise home visits, other means, to ensure coronavirus isolation orders are obeyed The government decided to put a hold on efforts to pass legislation allowing police to track the cellphones of people who are required to be in quarantine due to their possible exposure to the coronavirus. As a result, use of “geolocation” ended Wednesday night and police are now to focus on using other isolation enforcement measures, including surprise visits to the homes of (...)

    #algorithme #contactTracing #smartphone #géolocalisation #BigData #COVID-19 #santé #surveillance


    https://seenthis.net/messages/847346 via etraces

  • Coronavirus is a death sentence for Palestinians caged in Gaza -

    Even a small outbreak among Gaza’s densely-packed, blockaded population would put an impossible strain on a healthcare system already teetering on the verge of collapse
    Shannon Maree Torrens
    Mar 12, 2020 4:06 PM


    Imagine two million human beings living in the space of just 365 square kilometers. One of the most densely populated places on Planet Earth, confined in a cage from which they cannot escape. These two million people cannot leave, even if they wanted to, without great difficulty.

    They must live their lives within the confines of this rapidly deteriorating area of land, some persisting in the hope that one day things may change, but many surviving with the realization and resignation that they very well may not. No matter their degree of optimism or pessimism, all are isolated from the rest of the world. We call this place the Gaza Strip, and it has been under blockade by Israel since 2007.

    It is now March 2020. The novel coronavirus, has become an issue of global concern. The disease it causes, COVID-19, has spread far from its origins in China. In a short space of time, coronavirus is seemingly everywhere. It moves as frequently as the planes and people who spread it back and forth across the world.

    As of 11 March, more than 118,000 people have been infected globally, almost 4,300 people have died and at least 114 countries/territories and areas are affected. The world buys masks and hand sanitizer. The World Health Organisation classifies novel coronavirus as a pandemic. People stock up on food. “What will happen to us?” the world says. “What if we get sick?”

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  • Netanyahu, Likud spread hate of Arab Israelis, U.S. State Department report says - Israel News - Haaretz.com

    The U.S. State Department accused Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud party of promoting hatred against Israel’s Arab citizens in its annual human rights report, published on Wednesday.

    The report also criticized Likud for placing cameras at polling stations in Arab towns and neighborhoods during the general election in April 2019.

    The annual report contains a country-by-country breakdown of important events that impact the human rights situation around the world. This year’s report made headlines because of a semantic change in how it refers to Palestinians who live in East Jerusalem – instead of calling them “Palestinian residents” as in previous reports, they are now “Arab residents” or “non-Israeli citizens,” a move that was criticized by Palestinian leaders.

    #israël #palestine #usa

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  • A message from a Jewish friend - Haaretz Editorial -


    The leading Democratic presidential candidate sent an important message to Israel Wednesday. Israel would be wise to listen. During the 10th television debate among the party’s presidential candidates, Sen. Bernie Sanders called the Israeli prime minister a “reactionary racist.” His opponents did not respond to this characterization of Benjamin Netanyahu. Sanders also said he would consider returning the U.S. Embassy to Tel Aviv and promised to protect Israel’s security but also not to ignore the Palestinians’ suffering.

    Sanders’ statements accurately reflect the new winds blowing through his party, which has been the American Jewish community’s political home for decades, and ought to gladden every lover of peace and justice in Israel. After years in which the United States paid only lip service to opposing the settlements while providing practical support to the occupation and almost every Israeli military operation, Sanders’ words are sweet music to the ears of anyone who believes that without vigorous steps by Washington, including conditioning American aid on a change in Israeli policy, no such change will ever happen.

    Nevertheless, it’s hard to ignore the fact that a politician who may well reach the White House called Israel’s prime minister a “reactionary racist,” and nobody in the Democratic Party came to his defense. This is the rotten fruit not just of Israel’s policy of occupation, which Netanyahu did not begin, but also of his one-party policy in the United States. Netanyahu’s Israel has put all its hope and trust in the Republican Party in general and in President Donald Trump’s administration in particular, while riding roughshod over the tradition of maintaining good relations with both parties. And now, the check has come due. Netanyahu, who boasts of his close relationship with the U.S. administration, has opened a worrying gulf between Israel and the Democratic Party, Israel’s traditional friend in Washington.

    Sanders is a friend of Israel. He is proud of his Jewishness and says that he will see to the welfare of the state. His voice is the new voice of his party, and he may well reach the White House. In order to repair Israel’s relationship with the man who might become the most important leader in the world, which has sunk to a nadir, Benjamin Netanyahu must be replaced Monday, Election Day.

    Haaretz Editorial

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  • Israeli police question left-wing activist Jonathan Pollak on suspicion of incitement to terror
    Josh Breiner Feb 24, 2020 - Haaretz.com

    Left-wing activist and Haaretz employee Jonathan Pollak was investigated Monday morning at the Tel Aviv District Police headquarters on suspicion of incitement to violence and terror, in the wake of an article he wrote that was published in the online edition of Haaretz in Hebrew.

    His investigation is taking place with the approval of the State Prosecutor’s Office, and after the attorney general had reported last week that he was launching a criminal probe against Pollak.

    The investigation was opened due to statements he wrote in a column entitled: “Why I refuse to cooperate with the court.” Acting Attorney General Raz Nazri decided that there is no reason to open an investigation against Haaretz or its editors.

    In an article that was erroneously posted on the Haaretz website in an unedited version, Pollak wrote, among other things: “Yes, we must cross the lines and break the law. Despite the price, we must join the children of the stones and firebombs. We must march in their footsteps.” These sentences were removed from the article shortly after its publication on the website, and did not appear in the print version of the newspaper.

    Pollak’s attorney, Gaby Lasky, said: “The unusual speed with which the Attorney General’s Office ordered an investigation of Jonathan Pollak, and his speedy summons by the police, arouse a strong suspicion that the investigative entities surrendered to the continued pressure of the right and are trying to ‘balance’ the attorney general’s decision to stay the proceedings in the criminal complaint filed by the extremist right-wing organization Ad Kan against Pollak and two other activists.”

    Pollak was released from custody last week, after the attorney general ordered a stay in the proceedings against him and two other activists, saying they were improper. He was arrested due to his refusal to report for hearings regarding the complaint filed against him by Ad Kan. The non-profit organization claims that since 2013, he and the other two activists against whom proceedings were brought – Kobi Snitz and Ilan Shalif – participated in violent demonstrations against Israeli security forces as part of the their activities on behalf of the Anarchists Against the Wall movement.

    Deputy Attorney General Amit Marari wrote in an official legal opinion that enforcing the law is the job of the authorities, and should not be done by representatives of the political camps. “The public interest is that the government authorities are those who will enforce the law in such cases, while taking into account all the relevant considerations, and that enforcement will not be in the hands of the parties to the political dispute that is at the basis of the protest,” she wrote.

    The opinion of the deputy attorney general indicates that the evidentiary basis for the crimes attributed to the three men is missing. In addition, Marari argued that it is not the business of the parties to the proceeding – the Ad Kan organization – since the proceeding is of public rather than private importance. “There is no place for enforcement to be carried out by a private organization. In light of the aforesaid, the request for a stay of proceedings should be accepted,” she wrote.


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  • Bernie vs AIPAC: As Sanders surges, pro-Israel Democrats scramble for backup plans - Haaretz.com

    For many, taking aim at the pro-Israel lobby this week embodies what the Democratic front-runner stands for – and highlights why others are worried about him
    Allison Kaplan Sommer
    Feb 26, 2020 6:40 PM


    For about a minute last week, it seemed like the traditionally pro-Israel moderates in the Democratic Party were coming to terms with the fact that their least favorite candidate, Senator Bernie Sanders, had all but locked down their party’s presidential nomination.

    They appeared to be ceasing their attacks on Sanders in the name of party unity, and because alienating the presumptive nominee – who would be the first Jewish nominee by a major party in U.S. history – wasn’t a wise move.
    Bernie, Bibi and the brutal occupation: Listen to Gideon LevyHaaretz Weekly Ep. 64

    But the cease-fire proved too fragile to hold.

    Signs of a truce came late last week as caucus polls in Nevada anticipated the sweeping Sanders victory over the rest of the Democratic field. News broke that Mark Mellman, who heads the lobbying group Democratic Majority for Israel, told a gathering in New York that his organization was taking a step back from presidential politics. “We don’t have plans to be further involved in the presidential race – against Sanders or anyone else, for that matter,” he said.
    The audience awaiting the arrival of Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders during a campaign rally in San Antonio, Texas, February 22, 2020.
    The audience awaiting the arrival of Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders during a campaign rally in San Antonio, Texas, February 22, 2020. AFP

    Mellman told a panel at a Manhattan community center that his group would focus its efforts instead on congressional races – both in primaries where “there are pro-Israel champions running against anti-Israel challengers,” and where pro-Israel Democrats were running against Republicans.

    Taken at face value, Mellman’s words pointed to a radical change in strategy. His Democratic Majority for Israel group had just spent over $1 million in negative ads in Iowa and Nevada casting doubt on Sanders’ electability and, controversially, invoking the senator’s heart attack last fall to suggest he was unfit to be president.

    Mellman was personally vocal, sounding the alarm that a Sanders nomination spelled a “Democratic disaster.” Sanders was, he wrote in a fundraising email on the eve of the Iowa caucus, the candidate “we believe is least capable of winning in November and most likely to adopt a hostile attitude toward Israel.”
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    Despite those efforts, Sanders has surged in the polls.

    And so last week, in the face of Sanders’ apparent near-inevitability as nominee, it seemed that Democratic Majority for Israel was refocusing on Congress, hoping to balance a possible Sanders White House with a House and Senate that could act as a bipartisan firewall against any attempts to leverage military and economic aid to influence Israeli policy toward the Palestinians.

    When Haaretz contacted Democratic Majority for Israel this week, the group denied having backed away from involvement in the presidential race. Rather, it was just taking a break.

    “Today we don’t have plans for specific ads in specific places,” Mellman told Haaretz. “Tomorrow or next week or next month, we could develop plans.”

    AIPAC wars

    If Sanders had been a more conventional politician, he might have seized the moment to defuse the group’s opposition to his candidacy. He had already offered an unexpectedly balanced answer when confronted earlier this month by an IfNotNow activist, who urged him to boycott the upcoming American Israel Public Affairs Committee policy conference.

    https://seenthis.net/messages/827917 via Nouvelles d’Orient

  • Bernie Sanders says won’t attend AIPAC confab that ‘gives platform to bigotry’
    ‘The Israeli people have the right to live in peace and security. So do the Palestinian people,’ Democratic presidential candidate says on Twitter
    Amir Tibon Washington – Feb 24, 2020 4:58 AM

    WASHINGTON – Senator Bernie Sanders, the current front-runner in the Democratic primary, announced Sunday that he won’t be attending the annual AIPAC conference next week.

    He accused the group of giving a platform to “leaders who express bigotry and oppose basic rights” for the Palestinian people. (...)


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  • App used by Netanyahu’s Likud leaks Israel’s entire voter registry - Israel Election 2020 - Haaretz.com

    The Likud has uploaded the full register of Israeli voters to an application, causing the leak of personal data on 6,453,254 citizens. The information includes the full names, identity card numbers, addresses and gender of every single eligible voter in Israel, as well as the phone numbers and other personal details of some of them.

    Israeli political parties receive personal details of voters before the elections and commit to protecting their privacy, as well as not to reproduce the registry, not to provide it to a third party, and to permanently erase all the information once the election is over.

    The voter registry was uploaded by Likud to the Elector app, which is used by the party to manage Election Day. The firm that developed the application, Feed-b, commented that the vulnerability was a “one-off incident that was immediately dealt with," and that security measures have since been boosted.

    The Likud has yet to respond to a request for comment.

    According to information obtained by Haaretz, as well as Noam Rotem and Ido Kenan of the Cybercyber podcast, a vulnerability in the application allowed for anyone to easily download the entire voter registry. The only known leak of a similar magnitude occurred in 2006, when an Interior Ministry employee stole the population registry and distributed it illegally.

    Haaretz received an anonymous tip about the security lapse, allowing anyone to obtain the leaked information in its entirety without using sophisticated tools. Right-clicking on the Elector app’s home page and choosing “view source” revealed the original code of the internet page. The code revealed all the usernames and passwords of system admins, allowing one to log in and download the registry.

    The anonymous tipper also provided Haaretz with personal details of powerful people in Israel. It is unknown how many people gained access to the data and downloaded it. However, the application has users in various countries abroad, among them the United States, China, Russia and Moldova.

    Dans le paquet, il y aurait les données de personnalités importantes, y compris dans le domaine de la sécurité... #israël

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  • The Holocaust as a pretext for annexation

    Zeev Sternhell


    The joint operation by Donald Trump and Benjamin Netanyahu to grant American legitimacy to the annexation of Palestinian territories was leaked just as the memorial ceremony of the World Holocaust Forum was taking place at Yad Vashem. It’s hard to conceive of a more cynical combination: In Jerusalem, anti-Semitism was used to silence the expected worldwide opposition to the annexation plan.

    And thus the anti-Semitism that brought catastrophe upon the Jewish people was turned into a cynical and shameless political tool by Israel. Jerusalem turned anti-Semitism into the ultimate weapon against any call for the removal of even a few Jews from the West Bank and against the idea of dividing the land fairly. To the nationalists, any policy that doesn’t completely mesh with the Israeli interest as they see it is tantamount to anti-Semitism.
    Trump’s Unreal Deal: No Peace, No Plan, No Palestinians, No Point. Listen to Haaretz’s podcast

    The talent of Netanyahu and his minions for using the Holocaust and anti-Semitism as a currency requires no further proof, and Europe’s cowardice and inability to stand up to the Israeli right’s blackmail is also notorious. Likud’s Israel has branded denial of the occupation and the apartheid in the territories as anti-Zionist and then equated this anti-Zionism with anti-Semitism. Europe is, justifiably, racked with guilt feelings toward the Jews; this account will never be closed, but it still doesn’t justify Europe’s forgiving attitude toward Jewish-Israeli nationalism and racism.

    Paradoxically, this forgiving stance also ends up amounting to active support for the destruction of Israel as a liberal, democratic and Jewish society. Every reasonable person understands that annexation without equal rights for Palestinians means the establishment of a new apartheid state – creating such a reality isn’t exactly one of the EU’s reasons for being. Who in Western Europe is willing to lend patronage to this act and let the Jewish nationalists exploit the unforgivable past to entirely drain Jewish nationalism of any drop of liberal values?
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    Beyond all the discussion on what constitutes the religious and national Jewish identity, Zionism was an answer to European anti-Semitism and one solution to the oppression of the Jews and the mortal danger they were in. Escape to the New World was the favored solution for 90 percent of those who fled Europe before the gates of the United States were closed in the early 1920s.

    The Zionist solution proved itself because all other doors were locked, and after the Holocaust it gained worldwide legitimacy. But now the nationalist right is trying to expand this legitimacy for freedom and independence to include occupation and annexation. This is the epitome of the cynical and shameful exploitation of the Holocaust and anti-Semitism for the Israeli government’s political needs.

    Now comes the question: How to make the liberal world understand that there is no connection between anti-Semitism and savage criticism of the occupation and annexation, or of other aspects of Israeli policy in the territories?
    Breaking news and analyses in your inbox

    The German president expressed remorse in a way that inspires respect. Under the leadership of Chancellor Angela Merkel, his country absorbed a million non-Christian and non-European refugees in an attempt to show that it is free of racism. But Germany and France, which has its own anti-Semitism issues, act like they’re afraid of their own shadows when touching on the sensitive nerve of criticism of Israel.

    The right’s propaganda has managed to convince many of the best West European liberals that such criticism amounts to opposition to Zionism, which amounts to denying Israel’s right to exist – and therefore amounts to anti-Semitism. This is a total lie, and Israelis should be the first to shout this truth from the rooftops.
    zeev sternhell

    Zeev Sternhell

    Haaretz Contributor

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  • One person, one vote for Israel-Palestine

    Gideon Levy

    – Opinion - Israel News | Haaretz.com

    The Trump administration’s Middle East peace plan brings with it good news and bad news. It will put the final nail in the coffin of that walking corpse known as the two-state solution – that’s the good news. It will also create a new reality in which international law, the resolutions of the international community and especially international institutions are meaningless.

    Filled with the hope that the U.S. president instills in us, in his great mercy, let’s begin with the good news. Once his proposal is made public, no one will ever be able to talk with any seriousness about the two-state solution. It was probably never born, but now it is clearly dead. There is no Palestinian state and there never will be.

    The gall of America to support Israeli annexation now and the establishment of a Palestinian state only “in the future” – as if the burning issue were annexation, not the occupation – is only an ornament for the casket. The Palestinian Authority, the European Union, the United Nations, the Jewish establishment and the Zionist left will no longer be able to mention this option without making complete asses of themselves.

    How would European countries dare mention the two-state solution without disgracing themselves? How would the Zionist left dare speak of the creation of a Palestinian state? Where exactly? Between Bethlehem and Beit Ummar, with the monstrosity of the annexed Gush Etzion bloc in the middle? Between East Jerusalem and Jericho, with greater Ma’aleh Adumim in between? A Palestinian Lilliput, Mini Palestine, a miniature park with tiny-scale models of buildings and people in a grotesque demonstration of a just solution.

    With the Jordan Valley and most of the West Bank settlements under Israeli sovereignty, the Palestinians are guaranteed not to have a state, half-state, city government or neighborhood. Nothing but a penal colony. With the Jordan Valley and most of the settlements annexed, Donald Trump makes official the establishment of the apartheid state to be known as the State of Israel. What Herzl began in Basel, Trump finished in Washington.

    From now on, it will be impossible to let the international community, especially the pretentious and self-described seeker of the good, keep paying lip service to the two-state solution. There is no such thing. There never was. There never will be. If the international community, and with it the PA, hope to ever solve the Palestinian problem, they have just one way forward: the establishment of a democracy between the Mediterranean Sea and the Jordan River. Nothing else is left.

    Europe, which has turned into the muzzle of critics of the occupation, must adopt a new language, the language of equal rights. The world has two choices: It can recognize apartheid or it can support the one-democratic-state solution. Europe can’t continue to embrace Israel and talk about “shared values” with the official apartheid state. It will have to remember, finally, how it behaved with that state’s predecessor, South Africa, and how Europe and a version of the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement led to the fall of that regime.
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    Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and the PA will also have to say goodbye to the dream. It has been shelved. It has been replaced by a different dream, and they will have to take it on, speak its language and work to make it come true – that or give in to apartheid in exchange for the fistful of dollars promised by the Americans. It’s the same for Israel, of course. Their dream, a Jewish state, has also been shelved. Zionism is over. You remained silent, you supported, you ignored. Now deal with it.

    Trump’s news and the world’s capitulation, however, is much more portentous. Trump is creating not only a new Israel, but a new world. A world without international law, without honoring international resolutions, without even the appearance of justice. A world in which the U.S. president’s son-in-law is more powerful than the UN General Assembly. If the settlements are permitted, everything is permitted.

    What was won with brutal military force shall be liberated only with force. In the world of Trump and the Israeli right, there’s no room for the weak. They have no rights.

    From now on, it’s one person, one vote – the single vote of Trump (and Benjamin Netanyahu), or the equal vote of every person living in Israel-Palestine. Europeans, Palestinians and Israelis: The time has come to choose between the two.

    https://seenthis.net/messages/822408 via Nouvelles d’Orient

  • Trump invite Nétanyahou et Ganz pour la présentation de son « plan du siècle » ! sans doute pense-t-il que le problème est de faire la paix entre les deux responsables israléiens ! Exit les Palestiniens !

    Trump’s peace deal could be a green light for Israel’s annexation plan - Israel News - Haaretz.com

    U.S. President Donald Trump plans to publish his peace plan for Israel and the Palestinians by Tuesday and invite Benjamin Netanyahu and Benny Gantz to the White House. We may now, with hindsight, decode some of what transpired in the past week.
    It seems the prime minister and his Kahol Lavan rival both knew what Washington was cooking up. In Netanyahu’s case, this would be no surprise, given his close bond with Trump. But it’s clear Gantz was in the loop as well.

    This explains Netanyahu’s bid to outflank Gantz by again raising the proposal to annex the Jordan Valley. Kahol Lavan had to respond, but it seemed forced and awkward – Gantz’s party was ready for annexation if it was coordinated with the international community.

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  • Israeli director to helm new HBO-Keshet show about targeted assassinations - Israel News - Haaretz.com


    New York-based Israeli film director Yuval Adler will write and direct the first season of a new Israeli-American series based on the book Rise and Kill First, written by Ronen Bergman, industry publication Deadline reported over the weekend.
    Hijacking the Holocaust for Putin, politics and powerHaaretz Weekly Ep. 57

    The bestseller, which tells the history of targeted assassinations carried out by Israeli intelligence agencies, was optioned in 2018, a few months after publication, by the U.S. network HBO and Israel’s Keshet.

    The first season will focus on the joint CIA-Mossad operation to assassinate senior Hezbollah leader Imad Mughniyeh in 2008. The Lebanese-born military commander was assassinated at the age of 46 in a suburb of Damascus, when an explosive device attached to his car went off.

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  • From now on, every Palestinian is an anti-Semite - Europe - Haaretz.com

    L’excellent article de Gideon Levy sur la résolution Maillard, “désormais chaque Palestinien est un antisémite”


    ❝The plague is spreading. Under cover of the (just) war against anti-Semitism, Europe and the United States silence every voice daring to criticize Israel. Under cover of this war, they are undermining their freedom of speech. Incredibly, this new phenomenon is not triggering any protest, as one would expect. Laws labeling anti-Zionism as anti-Semitism and the anti-occupation movement as anti-Semitic, are passed with overwhelming majorities. Now they are playing into the hands of Israel and the Jewish establishment, but they are liable to ignite anti-Semitism when questions arise about the extent of their meddling.

    Last week, the phenomenon hit France, cradle of the revolution. The French National Assembly passed by a sweeping majority a bill that adopts the definition of anti-Semitism issued by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance, which equates anti-Zionism with anti-Semitism. Liberty? Equality? Fraternity? Not when it involves Israel. Here, these values are rendered mute.
    Haaretz Weekly Episode 51Haaretz

    French parliament member Sylvain Maillard formulated the bill. He is another friend of Israel’s who reportedly participated in a meeting with settler wheeler-dealer Yossi Dagan, head of the Samaria regional council, some months ago. “Criticizing the very existence of Israel as a collective composed of Jewish citizens is tantamount to hatred towards the Jewish community as a whole; just like collectively holding Jews accountable for the policies of the Israeli authorities is an expression of anti-Semitism,” the law’s introduction states. The cat is out of the bag: It is forbidden to raise doubts about Zionism, one of the only ideologies in the world whose righteousness cannot be questioned by the nations of the free world.

    First, the language. Israel “as a collective composed of Jewish citizens.” The nation-state law was also accepted in the National Assembly in Paris. If Israel is a collective of Jewish citizens, what are the Palestinian citizens? And what are the subjects living under occupation? The 154 parliamentarians who raised their hands in support of the decision cannot evade these questions. Liberté, égalité, fraternité – only for the Jews? And what are they offering the six million Palestinians, citizens and subjects of the occupation, who live under “the collective of Jewish citizens”? Second-rate liberty, equality, fraternity? From now on no one is even allowed to ask these questions. Anyone who asks is an anti-Semite.

    “Anti-Zionism is a legitimate position in Jewish history, and it also has a long history in Israel,” a petition signed in vain by 129 Jewish and Israeli professors and intellectuals against passage of the law, stated. The petition’s signatories mentioned that there were many anti-Zionist Holocaust survivors. Now they, too, are anti-Semites.

    From now on, every Palestinian and every Arab, except for Ayoub Kara, is an anti-Semite. Even every Jew and every Israeli who supports a solution of one democratic and egalitarian state, precisely in the spirt of the French revolution, is an anti-Semite. So too anyone for whom Zionism is a colonialist movement – is that not a legitimate position? – is an anti-Semite.

    For generations of Palestinians, Zionism is the essence of their existence; it expelled them from their country, deprived them of their lands, dishonored them, ruined their lives, and kills and torments them to this very day, without the end being in sight. Are they forbidden from being anti-Zionists? Are they able to not hate Zionism? Will France try them for the transgression of anti-Semitism? They are not fighting Zionism because they are anti-Semites. They are anti-Zionist only because Zionism destroyed their lives.
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    And what are the protesters of the fence around the cage of Gaza? Are they anti-Semites? Are they not freedom fighters? And what about people of conscience around the world who identify with them? From now on they are all anti-Semites, and that is outlawed in France. And if denying the right of Jewish self-determination is anti-Semitism, how will the French National Assembly refer to Israel’s denial of the Palestinians’ rights? Why does it not pass a law about that? Only because the Palestinians and justice don’t have a powerful lobby in France.

    https://seenthis.net/messages/814809 via Nouvelles d’Orient

  • Israel is rewriting the history of Middle Eastern Jews for propaganda - Israel News - Haaretz.com

    After decades of being virtually absent from historical discourse in Israel, its communities of Jews from Middle Eastern and North African lands are finally getting their due, albeit in a partial and revisionist way
    Lior Sternfeld and Menashe Anzi Dec. 1, 2019 | 11:22 AM | 1


    Much has already been written about the apparent lack of interest in the rich culture and history of the Jewish communities of North Africa and the Middle East, not to mention the highly problematic nature of lumping together the histories and cultures of Jews of more than 20 different lands in a single simplistic narrative.

    The Jews in the Muslim world, so that narrative goes, lived humiliated lives as second-class dhimmis, just waiting for Zionist redemption. Once Israel was established, they immigrated there en masse – a story that also includes active deportation of Jews.

    This narrative is misleading in many ways. First, it ignores more than a thousand years of Jewish existence in the Muslim world, a reality that was neither good or bad exclusively, but one that included both aspects, and was characterized by complicated relationships with the majority population, with other minorities, and with the local and imperial political structures. This is the nature of all history.

    Second, the narrative denies the possibility that Middle Eastern Jewish communities were actually integral parts of their respective societies, and links the events and transformations those communities experienced to larger historical processes associated with Zionist history in Europe – rather than to developments that took place in the non-Western world.

    Third, this narrative subjugates the religious traditions of Middle Eastern Jews to the way Middle Eastern Jewry and Judaism was imagined by Israel society, while ignoring the immense variety of options that existed in that context as well, during the modern age: Orthodoxy next to local rabbinical traditions, communism with religious elements, Arab or Iranian or Turkish nationalism, and more.

    Can we talk about the immigration of Yemenite Jews the same way that we describe the experiences of the Jews of Morocco or Egypt? Is it accurate to say that Egyptian Jews were forcibly expelled for reasons of anti-Semitism while, in fact, their leaving was part of a much broader policy of the Egyptian government of deporting foreign nationals, and not Jews in particular? Can we ignore the role played by Israel in the deterioration of relations between the Jews and the governments of the region? Did Iraqi Jews leave in the exact same manner as the Jews of Lebanon? The way this story of expulsion on anti-Semitic grounds is being told today suggests a history that’s been unified and simplified.

    In 2014, the Knesset passed a bill making November 30 (the day after the anniversary of the United Nations vote on the partition of Palestine, in 1947) a Remembrance Day for the Departure and Expulsion of Jews from the Arab Countries and Iran. Despite the name, Jews were never expelled from Iran. How do we reconcile the fact that Iran, just like Morocco and Tunisia, for example, still has a small but vibrant Jewish community? And that in Iraq and Egypt, discussions about Jewish history have become part of a vast public national conversation on local culture? Is it correct to echo Francis Fukuyama and declare that Jewish history in the Middle East came to an end with the creation of Israel?

    https://seenthis.net/messages/813814 via Nouvelles d’Orient

  • The contract on Corbyn
    Corbyn is not an anti-Semite. His real sin is to fight against injustice in the world, including the version Israel perpetrates
    Gideon Levy Nov 28, 2019

    The Jewish establishment in Britain and the Israeli propaganda machine have taken out a contract on the leader of the British Labour Party, Jeremy Corbyn. The contract was taken out a long time ago, and it was clear that the closer Corbyn came to being elected prime minister, the harsher the conflict would get.

    On Tuesday it reached its climax in an article by the chief rabbi of Britain, Ephraim Mirvis, in an article in The Times. Mirvis has decided that the anxiety of British Jews over Corbyn is justified and he is not fit to be prime minister. He called on Jews not to vote for Labour in the election on December 12.

    Born in South Africa and a graduate of Har Etzion Yeshiva in the settlement of Alon Shvut, Mirvis is the voice of British Jewry. In Capetown, Johannesburg and Har Etzion, he should have learned what apartheid was and why one should fight it. His parents did so, but one doubts that he learned the moral lesson from the regions of disenfranchisement in which he lived in South Africa and the West Bank.

    As opposed to the horrid Corbyn, Mirvis sees nothing wrong with the continued occupation; he does not identify with the struggle for Palestinian freedom, and he doesn’t sense the similarity between the South Africa of his childhood, Har Etzion of his youth and Israel of 2019. That is the real reason that he rejects Corbyn. The Jews of Britain also want a prime minister who supports Israel – that is, supports the occupation. A prime minister who is critical of Israel is to them an exemplar of the new anti-Semitism.

    Corbyn is not an anti-Semite. He never was. His real sin is his staunch position against injustice in the world, including the version Israel perpetrates. Today this is anti-Semitism. The Hungarian Viktor Orban, the Austrian Freedom Party and the extreme right in Europe are not the danger to Jews. Corbyn is the enemy. The new and efficient strategy of Israel and the Zionist establishment brands every seeker of justice as an anti-Semite, and any criticism of Israel as hatred of Jews. Corbyn is a victim of this strategy, which threatens to paralyze and silence Europe with regard to Israel.

    British Jewry might not be faking its anxiety, but it is certainly magnifying the danger. There is anti-Semitism, though less that what is presented, certainly on the left. About half of British Jews are considering fleeing if Corbyn is elected. Let them flee. The survey that showed this could actually encourage anti-Semitism: Are the Jews of Britain conditionally British? To whom is their loyalty?

    The future of all British Jews is much more secure than the future of any Palestinian living under the occupation, and even more secure than that of any Arab living in Israel. Jews are persecuted and are victims of discrimination and racism less so than the Palestinians in the Israel they hold dear. Moreover, Islamophobia in Europe is more common than anti-Semitism, but people talk about it less.

    Mirvis presents no evidence of Corbyn’s anti-Semitism. It sufficed for him to note the fact that Corbyn described as “friends” those who “endorse the murder of Jews” – a reference to Corbyn’s comments on Hezbollah and Hamas. Corbyn is indeed a very harsh critic of the occupation, supports the boycott and compares the closure of Gaza with the siege of Stalingrad and Leningrad. These are anti-Israeli positions, but not necessarily anti-Semitic. The Jews of Britain are blurring this difference as are many Jews throughout the world, intentionally. One can (and should) be a harsh critic of Israel without being anti-Semitic.

    If the Jews of Britain and their chief rabbi were more honest and courageous, they would ask themselves: Isn’t Israel’s brutal occupation policy the strongest motive for anti-Semitism today? There is anti-Semitism, it must be fought, but it must also be recognized that Israel supplies it an abundance of excuses and motives.

    The Jews and Israel’s true friends should hope that Corbyn is elected. He is a statesman who can change international discourse about the occupation and the struggle against it. He is a ray of hope for a different world and a different Israel – and what more could we want.


    https://seenthis.net/messages/813334 via Loutre

  • A Million People Are Jailed at China’s Gulags. I Managed to Escape. Here’s What Really Goes on Inside

    Rape, torture and human experiments. Sayragul Sauytbay offers firsthand testimony from a Xinjiang ’reeducation’ camp Twenty prisoners live in one small room. They are handcuffed, their heads shaved, every move is monitored by ceiling cameras. A bucket in the corner of the room is their toilet. The daily routine begins at 6 A.M. They are learning Chinese, memorizing propaganda songs and confessing to invented sins. They range in age from teenagers to elderly. Their meals are meager : cloudy (...)

    #CCTV #vidéo-surveillance #Islam #surveillance #viol #prison


    https://seenthis.net/messages/812169 via etraces

  • ’Endless trip to hell’: Israel jails hundreds of Palestinian boys a year. These are their testimonies - Israel News - Haaretz.com

    They’re seized in the dead of night, blindfolded and cuffed, abused and manipulated to confess to crimes they didn’t commit. Every year Israel arrests almost 1,000 Palestinian youngsters, some of them not yet 13
    By Netta Ahituv Mar 16, 2019


    It was a gloomy, typically chilly late-February afternoon in the West Bank village of Beit Ummar, between Bethlehem and Hebron. The weather didn’t deter the children of the Abu-Ayyash family from playing and frolicking outside. One of them, in a Spiderman costume, acted the part by jumping lithely from place to place. Suddenly they noticed a group of Israeli soldiers trudging along the dirt trail across the way. Instantly their expressions turned from joy to dread, and they rushed into the house. It’s not the first time they reacted like that, says their father. In fact, it’s become a pattern ever since 10-year-old Omar was arrested by troops this past December.

    The 10-year-old is one of many hundreds of Palestinian children whom Israel arrests every year: The estimates range between 800 and 1,000. Some are under the age of 15; some are even preteens. A mapping of the locales where these detentions take place reveals a certain pattern: The closer a Palestinian village is to a settlement, the more likely it is that the minors residing there will find themselves in Israeli custody. For example, in the town of Azzun, west of the Karnei Shomron settlement, there’s hardly a household that hasn’t experienced an arrest. Residents say that in the past five years, more than 150 pupils from the town’s only high school have been arrested.

    At any given moment, there are about 270 Palestinian teens in Israeli prisons. The most widespread reason for their arrest – throwing stones – does not tell the full story. Conversations with many of the youths, as well as with lawyers and human rights activists, including those from the B’Tselem human-rights organization, reveal a certain pattern, even as they leave many questions open: For example, why does the occupation require that arrests be violent and why is it necessary to threaten young people.

    A number of Israelis, whose sensibilities are offended by the arrests of Palestinian children, have decided to mobilize and fight the phenomenon. Within the framework of an organization called Parents Against Child Detention, its approximately 100 members are active in the social networks and hold public events “in order to heighten awareness about the scale of the phenomenon and the violation of the rights of Palestinian minors, and in order to create a pressure group that will work for its cessation,” as they explain. Their target audience is other parents, whom they hope will respond with empathy to the stories of these children.
    Haaretz Weekly, Episode 19Haaretz

    In general, there seems to be no lack of criticism of the phenomenon. In addition to B’Tselem, which monitors the subject on a regular basis, there’s been a protest from overseas, too. In 2013, UNICEF, the United Nations agency for children, assailed “the ill treatment of children who come in contact with the military detention system, [which] appears to be widespread, systematic and institutionalized.” A report a year earlier from British legal experts concluded that the conditions the Palestinian children are subjected to amount to torture, and just five months ago the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe deplored Israel’s policy of arresting underage children, declaring, “An end must be put to all forms of physical or psychological abuse of children during arrest, transit and waiting periods, and during interrogations.”

    https://seenthis.net/messages/811982 via Nouvelles d’Orient

  • Facebook Sues Israel’s NSO Group Over Alleged WhatsApp Hack

    Facebook is seeking to have NSO barred from accessing or attempting to access WhatsApp and Facebook’s services after hacking spree that targeted journalists, diplomats, activists and others Facebook Inc. on Tuesday sued Israeli cyber surveillance firm NSO Group, alleging it hacked users of messaging platform WhatsApp earlier this year. The hacking spree targeted journalists, diplomats, human rights activists, senior government officials and others, Facebook said in its lawsuit, filed in (...)

    #NSO #WhatsApp #Facebook #Pegasus #smartphone #spyware #écoutes #hacking #surveillance #activisme #journalisme (...)


    https://seenthis.net/messages/808537 via etraces