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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Settlements Generate Virtually No Economic Activity
"A recent Israeli government report estimated there are…$250 million in annual exports — [only] 0.55 percent of the national total — from the West Bank, East Jerusalem and the Golan Heights, territories the international community generally considers illegally occupied."
Jodi Rodoren cited by Richard Silverstein, 22 Jan 2014

Daily acts of violence committed by Jewish Israeli citizens against West Bank Palestinians
"These incidents — now particularly heightened during the olive harvest season — are not the aberration from the norm, but a regular feature of life in the occupied West Bank. In 2012, over 7,500 Palestinian olive trees were destroyed. In the 5-year period between 2007 and 2011, there was a 315 percent increase in settler violence."
Mairav Zonszein, Israel Must Stop Settler Violence, 8 November 2013
Police impunity
After their own investigations establishing a prima facie violation, Btselem has lodged over 280 complaints of alleged police violence in the oPt since the start of the second Intifada: "we are aware of only 12 indictments" Btselem April 2013
Runners in the first ever Bethlehem Marathon were forced to run two laps of the same course on Sunday 21 April 2013, as Palestinians were unable to find a single stretch of free land that is 26 miles long in Area A, where the PA has both security and civil authority. See Marathon report
30th March, land day.
On 30 March 1976, thousands of Palestinians living as a minority in Israel mounted a general strike and organised protests against Israeli government plans to expropriate almost 15,000 acres of Palestinian land in the Galilee.The Israeli government, led by prime minister Yitzhak Rabin and defence minister Shimon Peres, sent in the army to break up the general strike. The Israeli army killed six unarmed Palestinians, wounded hundreds and arrested hundreds more, including political activists. All were citizens of Israel.
* Out of 103 investigations opened in 2012 into alleged offences committed by Israeli soldiers in the occupied territories, not a single indictment served to date
Yesh Din, 3 Feb 2013
* In total, out of an area of 1.6 million dunams in the Jordan Valley, Israel has seized 1.25 million − some 77.5 percent − where Palestinians are forbidden to enter.
Haaretz editorial, 4 Feb 2013


Boom: the EU-Israel ‘security’ nexus

Security is one of the few boom industries in these depression times and nowhere is it so booming as in the arms and ‘security’ trade between the EU and Israel – which happily has the oPt to test new products and services. Germany’s Left party MP Annette Groth explores the links.

Shakespeare’s people: spectators and protesters

Power struggles, exile and a weary people – some of the features of Ashtar’s production of Richard ll at the Globe, reviewed by Achbar Ha’ir. Political protest usurps the play, as was inevitable, in the BBC’s account of Habima’s Merchant of Venice on Tuesday, though the anti-protest protests were uglier and more pointless to Shakespeare critic Peter Kirwan.

Palestinian refugee problem solved at a vote

Republican Senator Mark Kirk is, with other right-wing Americans, an enemy of the UN Relief and Works Agency(responsible for the welfare of Palestinian refugees). His amendment, passed by the Senate, demands that those in receipt of UNWRA aid be categorised by length of lineage to residence in Palestine. The result is likely to be a rhetoric denying the number of refugees and the size of UNWRA’s budget.

What Israelis have a duty to forget – but are obsessed by

It is against Israel’s law to ‘remember’ the Naqba – but how can it be forgotten when Palestine is the living block to Israel realising its ambition – possession of the land from the Jordan to the Mediterranean. Uri Avnery takes the long view.

The many ways of being Jewish in Britain

The UK has the fourth biggest Jewish diaspora in the world – so not surprisingly, if with great inconvenience to government and conspiracy theorists, British Jews have no single voice, no single view, no single leader. Last week, the New Statesman magazine ran a special issue on Jews in Britain. Here we post articles by Ed Miliband and Keith Kahn-Harris from that issue plus a link to JfJfP’s advert.

Keep your eyes on the ball: snatched Palestinian footballer on hunger strike

Gains of the prisoners’ hunger strike include the release of PFLP leader Saadat and others from solitary confinement – their effort has, he says, brought a new and rare unity. But footballer Mahmoud al-Sarsak is still on hunger strike (2). Richard Falk – keep your eyes on the issue (3)

Israeli mayors to be fined if employ immigrants, er, infiltrators

Arutz Sheva, a right-wing (‘religious zionist’) media outlet popular amongst settlers, about one sixth of whom are the non-infiltrating sort of immigrant, viz American, reports on the latest anti-immigrant outburst; CNN’s Frida Ghitis is taken aback by Israeli racism.

Israelis and the trade in transplant organs

In 2010 false rumours circulated that Israeli doctors had harvested organs for transplant from Haitians after the earthquake. This gave rise to the accusation of blood libel – the mediaeval fantasy that Jews killed Christian children to use their blood for ritual purposes. Here we post pieces from Ynet, 2 news items on Kosovo and Israeli organ trafficking now, Haaretz news and an article from Bloomberg magazine which helps explain some of the many stories circulating on the internet.

Veolia acts in ‘wilful defiance of international law’ – keep it out

Veolia is a multinational company providing services to local authorities and others in the UK. It also provides services linking Israel to its illegal settlements. JfJfP got legal advice on why Veolia could and should be excluded from contracts given by local authorities. The briefing is here.

Making sense of Shavuot

Shavuot, from Saturday evening to Monday evening, May 26-28, celebrates the ‘giving of the Torah’, and readings from the book of Ruth are customary. This is potentially a rich field for thinking about the energy of ‘the stranger’ , of women’s friendship, the duty of the powerful to protect and the value of literacy and fables. Here are some responses.

Olympic committee puts Israel in Europe and Palestine in Asia

In the letter here, the London 2012 Olympic committee makes its contribution to Israel/Palestine border negotiations: place them in separate continents! No border, no problem!

Cry freedom: Amnesty’s report on the oPt

Amnesty’s 2012 report on the occupied Palestian territories shows, in flat legal language, that Palestinians lack freedom — of movement, of access to their land, of house ownership, from unfair torture and unfair detention — while Israel enjoys the freedom to break international law.

Violent ‘blacks out’ race riot in Tel Aviv

A racist mob ran amok in Tel Aviv on Thursday. News 1) and comment 2). Report on the revocation of UN resolution on Zionism is given – see online CiF comments 3). 4) a 2010 poll on racism of Israeli teenagers- the proportion of youth embracing a racist culture has grown since.

World view of Israel’s negative influence increases

Most notable about this poll for the BBC World Service is how differently media outlets report it beginning with a crude interpretation from Palestine Chronicle. We produce the original chart from pollster Globescan. The countries with the most positive rating are Japan, Germany,Canada and UK; least positive Israel, N.Korea, Pakistan, Iran.

The inescapable truth is that all actors are now engaged in a game of make-believe

Fig-leaves for the institutional players, a naked emperor for the wishful thinkers, all metaphors for the ‘peace process’ convey it is not real. The ICG focuses on new forces, like religion, on possible new actors , Palestinian diaspora, settlers, and on agents, like the Quartet, to be discarded.

Going it alone to leap over the peace block

The dead-locked status quo in Israel/Palestine relations is forcing new tactics. 1) Some Palestinians have opted for a stategy of separatism (though no national liberation movement has succeeded without allies). 2) The ICG suggests new partners including settlers and Palestinian diaspora while Blue White Future advocates “constructive unilateralism”

How to present all Europe as anti-semitic

The American Anti-Defamation League has carried out one of its regular polls to discover anti-semitic attitudes in Europe. Hungary, Poland, Spain top most of their measures but sharp differences are blurred. There is no question on Palestinians (see discussion below). Plus Haaretz +972 on anti-semitism in 2012.

Israel ‘from hero to villain’; debating anti-semitism 2003

This post contains news and comments from 2003 about anti-semitism in Europe, prompted by an EU poll on threats to peace and a speech by Ariel Sharon. The suspicion of resurgent European anti-semitism began to be voiced as the EU became more powerful, Israel occupied Palestinian territory in 1967 and a new generation entered political life.

The aim of Israeli state: protecting settlement project and taking the land.

This is less a review than a push by David Shulman for what Peter Beinart ignores: that the Israeli state is wholly geared to getting all the land, Jewish-settled. As a generous Arab resister says: “The Jews are not my enemy; their fear is my enemy…but I refuse to be a victim of Jewish fear anymore.”

Right turns on ‘them’ – Africans and the wrong sort of Jew

Regular readers may remember the times Netanyahu has warned, many years apart, of an ‘imminent’ danger of attack from Iran. Here he, and ministers, are at it again, over black immigrants. In Bibi-speak an ‘existential threat’ to Israel means anything from nuclear annihilation through ‘delegitimisation’ to too many of the wrong people having babies in The Only Democracy in the Middle East™. Reports from Mondoweiss, Times of Israel, Guardian, Haaretz 2010.