Israel/Palestine

Israel/Palestine

Benjamin Netanyahu’s Fantasy World

Netanyahu’s speech to Congress was brilliantly deceitful because it played to the fantasies that Israeli propaganda and right wing militarists in the US have been popularizing for the past thirty years. The biggest fantasy: that we can coerce others through power over them to do what we consider in the best interests of the U.S. or Israel.
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Israel/Palestine

Bringing the Values of Open Hillel Into Postgraduate Life: An Open Letter

Where will all the Open Hillelnikim go once they’ve left campus? What will become of this movement? How will you engage the Jewish community beyond campus? In short, how will you engage with the Israeli-Palestinian conflict as an American Jew?
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Israel/Palestine

The View from Palestine: American Jewish Journeys into the West Bank

Extend programs are based on a simple belief that without understanding Palestinian perspectives, we are condemned to see the conflict as a matter of unequivocal good against unequivocal evil, instead of as a tragic cycle from which the overwhelmingly majority of Israelis and Palestinians want to break.
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Israel/Palestine

Before Mondoweiss: Jewish Anti-Nationalism in the Wake of the Holocaust

Once upon a time, Hillel chapters across the country distributed an adamantly anti-Zionist newsletter that could well be described as the Mondoweiss of its day. Yet during the years in which the newsletter ran, Israel was gradually finding its place center-stage for Jews worldwide—a nightmare come true for the anti-Zionist camp.
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Israel/Palestine

Without Justice, Tolerance Perpetuates the Status Quo

Within Open Hillel, we often talk about the value of embracing the discomfort we experience when hearing opinions that we disagree with. After all, ideas that make us uncomfortable may challenge our intellectual or emotional security, but rarely challenge our actual physical safety.
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Israel/Palestine

Assimilation Indeed: Hillel’s Co-optation of Progressive Jewish Students, 1967-2015

For many Jewish students, the Six-Day War constituted the first time they experienced a connection to a Jewish cause recognized by the establishment. Unfortunately, the Hillel International of today has prioritized parroting the hasbara of expansionist Israeli governments over capacious intellectual debate.
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Israel/Palestine

A Wholehearted Jewish Future

My generation has left the peace movement in Israel hanging. Now we are relying on the next generation to articulate what we have been thinking but haven’t said. What we do say, we whisper. Then we congratulate ourselves for getting that far. Why are we frightened? Why are we silent?
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Israel/Palestine

Letter to a Jewish Girl

I write this letter for the Jewish girl who was afraid to put her name to this letter for fear of being deemed too controversial to be hired within the American Jewish community. I write this letter for the Jewish girl who debates the news schizophrenically with herself inside her head. I write this letter for the Jewish girl who was told that her politics went wrong when she let a few experiences with “good Arabs” distract her from the bigger picture.
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Israel/Palestine

What it Really Means to be Jew-ish

I am both Arab and Jewish, and I enjoy resisting those binaries through the performance of my own unique identity. But identifying with both my Arab and Jewish heritage garners mixed results. So long as Hillel is in the business of defining people’s Jewishness for them, they will continue to marginalize Jewish voices.
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Israel/Palestine

Dispatches from the Open Hillel Movement: An Introduction

This collection of pieces was born out of a gathering of ideas and debate modeled by the Open Hillel conference — a needed intervention in the contemporary echo chamber of Jewish American discourse about Israel.
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Israel/Palestine

Dispatches from the Open Hillel Movement

This collection of pieces was born out of the debates modeled by the Open Hillel conference. Some essays represent voices or ideas that are currently excluded by the Standards of Partnership, some discuss the challenges presented by the Open Hillel movement, some tell personal stories of political transformation, and some discuss the historical diversity of Jewish opinions about Zionism. The collection represents a taste of the vibrancy of Jewish opinion, ideas, and debate that the Open Hillel movement is working to revive. These essays represent the beginning, not the end, of a new kind of conversation.
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Israel/Palestine

Safe Space? Hillel’s Policies Drive a Wedge Between Queerness and Judaism

Hillel will never be the truly pluralistic community it claims to be until it makes a commitment to including all Jews, regardless of their political views on Israel/Palestine. Until then, it will continue to leave disproportionate numbers of queer students without a Jewish home on campus.
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Israel/Palestine

The Forbidden Conversation: A Photo Essay from the Open Hillel Conference

So what does the conversation between Jewish students, activists and scholars look like without Hillel International’s guidelines? What is so scary about an open and honest Jewish debate?
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Israel/Palestine

Coexistence and its Discontents

The Open Hillel Conference in October was the first place where I could engage in large-scale discussions of issues surrounding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and their interaction with Jewish identity openly, honestly, and with debate among people from a range of perspectives.
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Israel/Palestine

The Twin Ghosts of Slavery and the Nakba: The Roots that Connect Ferguson and Palestine

Returning to face the violence at the root of a nation state connects the struggle for Palestinian liberation and the struggle for Black liberation in the United States. By squarely turning to face how the past lives in the present of both countries, we can move toward reckoning with the root cause of racialized violence in both the Israel and the United States.
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