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

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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Mass execution of suspected informers in Gaza

Without due process of law Hamas gunmen executed 21 people they suspected of being informants the day after the IDF had killed three out of four Hamas leaders targetted for assassination, based on information received. This is the biggest mass public execution ordered by Hamas since it gained control in Gaza in 2007.

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Liberal Zionism provides cover for supremacist Zionism

One-time Zionist Antony Lerman argues that Liberal Zionism is now an anachronism. Israel is now driven by forces and ideas – religious messianism, colonialism, ethnic cleansing, purification of the tribe – which no-one with liberal or humanitarian views can subscribe to. Better to admit it’s a lost cause and argue for an Israel of equal rights.

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When all else fails kill the heads of Hamas

Having failed to crush Hamas or its popular support in Gaza Netanhayu/Shin Bet have turned to a tactic which is less costly in terms of money, manpower and reputation: kill the heads of Hamas with the maximum of publicity. Hamas of course says however many heads you cut off, more will grow. Reuters report.

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What Netanyahu will do to pull a ‘victory’ out of the ashes

From suggestions that the IDF itself sent the rockets that landed in Beersheba – the reason why Netanyahu recalled the negotiators from Cairo – to assassination attempts against Hamas leaders Netanyahu is desperately trying to pull a victory out of the failure to destroy Hamas and avoid ceasefire talks. Uri Avnery’s withering judgment.

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An effort to salvage the reputation of Zionism

Anyone who has been on any of the recent demonstrations for Gaza will have noticed that ‘Zionist’ is the usual term of abuse for Israel’s policies. It is used to reject accusations of antisemitism especially as many Christians describe themselves as Zionist. In S. Africa, Benjamin Pogrund says it is the right term for a liberation struggle while Ran Greenstein argues this ignores the reality of the oppression carried out in Zionism’s name.

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Comply – and die anyway

If there are human ‘monsters’ in the world, there’s little they can do without the masses acquiescing and co-operating. This does not save them as the Jews found after 1942 any more than it will save Palestinians. It does mean there must be resistance and resistance must be supported. An angry article by Miko Peled.

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Failure of the siege and separation route

As a means of denying Palestinian statehood and the Oslo Accords , the strategy of keeping Gaza as a locked-in enclave, separate from the West Bank has had partial success. Longer-term it is unsustainable as the proportion of unemployed, angry young men increases. The economic warnings are being ignored by Israel’s security chiefs; their interests would be best served by the very thing they are trying to destroy – a unity government whose writ runs throughout Palestine.

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Israel’s version of the enemy Hamas adopted by Arab states

Radical Islamism has been boosted by the turn against Hamas by Arab states. Linked to the Muslim Brotherhood, Hamas is now cast as the disruptive force in most Arab countries, thus accepting the Israeli version of its attack on Gaza. Where Palestine once united Arab states it now adds to the divisions writes Maged Mandour.

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British Jewish leadership slammed for lack of leadership

An invitation from the Board of Deputies to attend an open meeting in N. London was unambiguous: ‘The meeting will focus on what we can do to promote Israel’s case, addressing the best way to tackle the crisis and its implications for British Jewry.’ You would not know the crisis was about the lethal onslaught on Palestinians had it not been for a few JfJfP signatories who managed to get in. The rest of the audience were so consumed with fear and anger it was hard to know what they did want.

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Israel exports its own definition of war crimes

Hundreds of millions of civilians have been killed by governments in the 20th and 21st centuries by one means or other. IHL has ruled such slaughters illegal but Israeli philosophers and lawyers have come up with a handy justification of disproportionate force: its attacks are either on ‘military bases’ (all of Gaza being a military base in Israeli eyes) and self-defence. Other governments have been grateful for this rewriting of the law writes Jeff Halper.

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War is the shelter for leaders in Gaza and Israel

Relatives of a Palestinian woman, who medics said was killed in an Israeli air strike, mourn during her funeral in Khan Younis

War against the other has given Israel and Hamas their identities, protected the leaders from having to think about how to better the state of their people and from popular demands and criticism. They may be morally and politically bankrupt – and Israel’s extremism bears more responsibility – but who can break the status quo asks Amy Wilentz?

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Bibi’s make-believe exposed

The utter muddle of Netanyahu’s government – sort of agreeing to ceasefire talks, refusing to make any concessions, suddenly recalling the negotiation team – reveals it has nothing to offer except bluster. It can’t continue shelling Gaza. It won’t lift the siege. Adam Keller resorts to the fairy tales of Hollywood and Hans Christian Andersen to reveal the truth.

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Mass support for peace has evaporated

Still in 1999 there was a vigorous peace camp in Israel. Since the 2nd intifada it has diminished to a dedicated, and unpopular, core abandoned by the centre ground for various reasons including the belief that Hamas does not want peace. Despite David Grossman’s pleas, says Mazal Mualem, the middle ground is set against Hamas, and peace.

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Talks and ceasefire break up, perhaps

News from the ceasefire talks in Cairo is unclear. A report from JPost, quoting Palestinians, says agreement on 7 points had been reached; Ma’an news says Israelis are refusing to make any concessions. Analysis from Haaretz suggests progress is possible. Predictably a group in Gaza fired rockets (no-one hurt), predictably Netanyahu chose to recall his delegation. He has been on the back-foot since the IDF had to withdraw from Gaza with no gains.

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Consider the effects of Israeli actions on diaspora Jews.

There is historic antisemitism based on punitive Christian fantasies; there is modern antisemitism which is more often a response to actuality – punitive measures against Arab muslims carried out in the name of the state of all Jews, viz Israel. One Israeli think-tank has been warning of the effects of Israeli policies on Jews outside Israel since 2002 but it has yet to be grasped by the Israeli government.

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