Website policy


We provide links to articles we think will be of interest to our supporters, informing them of issues, events, debates and the wider context of the conflict. We are sympathetic to much of the content of what we post, but not to everything. The fact that something has been linked to here does not necessarily mean that we endorse the views expressed in it.
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Leon Rosselson, letter to the Guardian, 28 July 2014

“Before the current round of violence, the West Bank had been relatively quiet for years,” writes Jonathan Freedland (Israel’s fears are real, but this war is utterly self-defeating, 26 July). According to B’Tselem, the Israeli human rights centre, 90 West Bank Palestinians were killed, 16 of them children, by the IDF or by settlers between January 2009 and May 2014. According to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, there have been 2,100 settler attacks since 2006, involving beatings, shootings, vandalising schools, homes, mosques, churches and destroying olive groves. According to Amnesty International, between January 2011 and December 2013, Israeli violence resulted in injuries to 1,500 Palestinian children. “Relatively quiet” for whom?
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Posts

The deaf and blind hawkers of the ‘anti-Israel is antisemitic’ myth

There seems to be an expectation that when Israel is on the warpath, hostility to all Jews will burst out. Of course it doesn’t help that the Jewish establishments in Europe and the USA identify with Israel – but in the Anglophone world at least there are scores of Jewish groups which shout loudly Not in My Name. This is heard by fellow demonstrators and the two writers here who insist opposing Israeli policy is not antisemitic.

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Board of Deputies promotes myth of rampant antisemitism

It is horrible that there are more manifestations of antisemitism in the UK, mostly by a small number of young men. The recent joint statement of the Muslim Council of Britain and the Board of Deputies was presumably directed against them and we applaud it. However the Campaign Against Antisemitism, origin and personnel undeclared, which is organising a rally on Sunday backed by the BoD, seems as intent on spreading fear and hostility to Islam as it does on soberly dealing with antisemitism. Who does this help?

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Visions of Israeli power and ill-will

Asmaa al-Ghoul reports that some Palestinian analysts think the highly symbolic destruction by the IDF of two tower blocks in Gaza had such an impact on public opinion that Palestinians believed Israel had the will and the ability to utterly destroy Gaza, hence the willingness to accept a ceasefire.

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British Jewish and Muslim bodies issue joint call for peace, wisdom, hope

Leading bodies in the Muslim and Jewish communities in Britain have taken the unprecedented step of issuing a joint statement calling on their communities to work together for peace at home and abroad. The Board of Deputies of British Jews and Muslim Council of Britain state their communities, claiming common descent from Abraham, should not import middle east conflict but export hope.

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830+ American historians demand US change direction on Israel

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History is the most disputed subject in the Israel/Palestine conflict, and the role of the US in supporting Israel the most contentious. So it is fitting that US historians took the intellectual lead in demanding of Obama “We urge you to suspend US military aid to Israel, until there is assurance that this aid will no longer be used for the commission of war crimes”. The list of signatories is still in formation – so British historians , sign up!

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Blame game 1: Netanyahu wrong to accept ceasefire

Ntanyahu’s security cabinet put on a bravura performance on Wednesday night, insisting that all Israel’s aims had been achieved. Most Israelis think that neither side won and the more right-wing members of his cabinet think the IDF gave up too soon and Netanyahu should not have secretly accepted the ceasefire. His coalition may be a casualty of war.

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Blame Game 2: it’s the left that lost it

Settlers are notoriously the most aggressive group in Israel and in the wake of the ceasefire they are turning on the kibbutzniks on the border with Gaza and assailing them for their 2006 support for the withdrawal from Gaza and now, like the settlers in the Negev, for their failure to be the militaristic pioneers of settler myth.

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Palestinians celebrate their victory over Israel

Palestinians are not at this moment counting their dead, wounded and disabled or their demolished buildings. They have come out into the streets of Gaza’s towns to declare the failure of Israel to destroy the resistance and their support for Hamas and the firing of rockets into Israel finds an opinion poll.

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The truth in numbers

A bloodstained man mourns his father in Khan Younis, 23 July, Reuters

The number of dead tells you nothing about the case of Israelis and Palestinians. It tells you everything about who has the power – which in fact does tell you everything about the case. Israel exercises almost complete power over Palestinians in Gaza and its cry of ‘self-defence’ is utterly specious. BBC infographic.

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Israel’s foreign ministry: there is no siege of Gaza

This is one of the more brazen bits of hasbara yet produced by the Israeli state. There is no blockade. Goods move freely in and out of the Gaza strip. What’s the problem? In the post below, Gisha responds, and here an uncommitted journalist from Vox-com looks at limits on freedom of movement and trade in Gaza.

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Locked-in syndrome

The claim by Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs that there is no ‘siege of Gaza’ [above] is taken on by the NGO Gisha. It agrees there’s not a siege – because Israel has exercised total control over Gaza since 2007 and continues to exercise absolute state control over the economic and household life of people in Gaza.

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Statement on antisemitism and criticising Israeli policies

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In this statement the JfJfP executive registers its abhorrence of antisemitism – now being manifest in parts of Europe – and of all forms of racism. It also insists that antisemitism must not be conflated with criticism of Israel – as apologists for Israeli policies dishonestly do. Neither Israel nor these bodies speak for all Jews.

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The crippling cost of war against Hamas

From the excitable (Al Arabiya) through the sober (FT) to denial (Globes, Israel) all report that the Israeli economy, especially its currency (the NIS) has taken a hard knock from the war against Gaza. Tourism, accounting for 7per cent of GDP has collapsed (an own goal for Israel’s insistence on the Hamas threat) and the general insecurity about Israel’s priorities have taken their toll.

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Holocaust survivors speak up for Gaza

The Holocaust, or Shoah, did not give Jews a badge of exemption from humanitarian laws. If anything, the reverse is true. Having experienced the worst that human beings can do to each other where law does not rule, many survivors and descendants feel the greatest obligation to ensure Jews, in particular, do not commit inhumane acts with impunity – such as Israel’s attack on the people of Gaza, and the oPt. Hajo Meyer, who has just died, was one such honourable man. Sign petition to support the letter he was the first to sign.

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Always connect with the good

After a life-time of working with those severely damaged by the cruelty of others it is astonishing that Helen Bamber remained a compassionate and uncensorious person. She helped traumatised children by getting them to connect with the good things in their past and all victims of cruelty to feel safe and learn to trust again . Though not religious, her Judaism was important to her and we are honoured, and not surprised, that she chose to become a signatory of JfJfP.

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List of Palestinians killed in Gaza by IDF

With sadness and anger we resume publication of the names, where known, of the people of Gaza killed by the IDF in Operation Protective Edge. After a pause, the shelling resumed on August 24. The total of those killed is now 2,137 (noon, August 26). Over a third of them are 18 or under. Many of the corpses cannot be identified because they are unrecognisable. 10,860 people, including 3,307 children, have been injured.

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Netanyahu finds new reason for bombing Gaza

The IDF renewed its aerial bombardment of Gaza over the weekend killing at least 17 Palestinians. The reason this time was the killing of a four-year old boy by a rocket fired from Gaza. Reasons for the lethal onslaught have included the prevention of rocket fire, the destruction of tunnels, the separation of Hamas from the people of Gaza and the assassination of Hamas leaders. Israel says the attacks will continue all its aims – which change by the week – are achieved.

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Israeli youth say racism is their identity

This is the first of three very disturbing, if not surprising, depictions of the now-dominant Israeli youth culture of hatred of the left and hatred of Arabs. The view that neither the left nor Palestinians have any place in Israeli society has all the signs of a young fascist movement and one which the education system has no power to combat.

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Treason of the intellectuals

Prof. Zeev Sternhell, an authority of the rise of fascism in France, defines fascism as a rejection of, an assault on, enlightenment values. In the regime’s treatment of the Palestinians and of Jewish dissidents, in the submission of intellectuals to government orders and the blind following of the masses, Prof. Sternhell sees signs of fascism, and certainly the end of Zionism as he understood it.

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Gaza revealed a new, more fascistic, Israel

Fascist is an adjective often loosely and wrongly used. but from the mouth of the founder of American Conservative, a traditional right-wing publication, it is significant. Israel’s actions in Gaza, and the popular, racist support for it, clearly crossed the line of human decency, which the US and EU should have condemned.

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