Israel/Palestine

Israel/Palestine

The Walls of the Reform Movement’s “Big Tent”

Why would the Union for Reform Judaism give a right-wing Jewish leader a prominent platform from which to make hurtful, dehumanizing, and simplistic comments about Palestinian “culture”? Does inviting such a speaker honor the Reform movement’s history of moral certitude against injustice and discrimination?
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Israel/Palestine

Obama, Palestine, and the United Nations

For those of us who hoped that President Barack Obama would usher in a new era supporting international law, the United Nations, and Israeli-Palestinian peace, 2011 proved to be a profoundly disappointing year. In order for his policies to change, he needs to be pressured.
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Israel’s Education Dilemma: Reflections from a Former IDF Soldier in Hebron

As an American, an Israeli, and a Jew, hearing about a new OECD report that ranks Israel as the second most educated country in the world is reason to celebrate, but the true picture is far more complex.
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Israel/Palestine

Debate on Safe-Haven Zionism

Ethan J. Leib and Rebecca Subar offer opposing takes on safe-haven Zionism.
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Israel/Palestine

A Zionism of Fear

Israel’s expansionism relies on the Zionism of Desire. Indeed, the building of settlements—and worse, the continued expansion and building of settlements in Palestinian territory in light of the current situation—is essentially unimaginable without it. A Zionism of Fear is a political philosophy that takes as its point of departure the credible threat of cruelty against individual Jews because of their Jewishness. It is the Zionism of Desire that fuels Hamas and Hezbollah—but is it also the reality of Hamas and Hezbollah that fuels a more palatable Zionism of Fear.
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Israel/Palestine

Why Safe-Haven Zionism Is Incompatible with Jewish Cosmopolitanism

The social-emotional-intellectual conundrum of reconciling universalist allegiances and Jewish safety leads to a sequence of challenges to safe-haven political Zionism that our intellectual and moral integrity require us to consider. Fear is an appropriate response to danger. But what lack of imagination would permit us as a progressive American Jewish polity to be driven solely by our fears, to limit ourselves to solutions that destroy the agency of non-Jews and the self-determination of a non-Jewish nation, in order to protect ourselves from possible danger?
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Editorial

The Brilliant and Short-Sighted Strategy of the Israeli Right

Ever since 1948, Israeli governments have undermined popular support for a fully socialist society by playing the national security card, forcing people to choose between a civil struggle against fellow Jews who benefit from economic inequalities and an outward-looking struggle against Arab enemies and Palestinians seeking to return to their place of birth.
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Justice & Prisons

A Populist Assault on Judicial Independence: Newt Gingrich, Recep Tayyip Edrogan, and Benjamin Netanyahu

It is not unusual to see politicians in the U.S. chastising courts for rulings that contravene their party’s interests or ideology, but the recent proposals from Republican candidates would undermine the critical and constitutional independence of the courts. Similar assaults on the courts being carried out by conservative governments in Turkey and Israel are important as cases of these Republican policies being executed.
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US Politics

Let’s End Our Wars on the “Other”: U.S. Interests, Israeli Fears, and the Demonization of Iran

Among the nations whose regimes it has demonized, the United States has gone to war with North Korea, North Vietnam, Panama, Serbia, Iraq, Afghanistan, and Libya, and sponsored a guerrilla war in Nicaragua and an invasion of Cuba. The current demonization by Western leaders of Iran’s president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has increased the chance of war in the Middle East by inflating Israeli fears that Iran is intent on developing nuclear weapons with which to eradicate the Jewish state from its Muslim neighborhood.
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Activism

Israel’s Good Life Revolution

To live the good life, according to the dominant Israeli ideology, is to be sufficiently secure from physical threats, which is why each and every aspect of life in Israel is carried out under the tutelage of the notion of security. What this security is for, what higher end it serves, is a question seldom asked and never answered.
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US Politics

Why A Perry Presidency Would Be Bad For Israel

In a flurry of recent activity Rick Perry made his national debut into the national debate on the Israel-Palestinian conflict with two op-eds and a press conference within a week of each other…. Perry’s unabashed endorsement of the settlement enterprise would mark a distinct shift in presidential rhetoric, but would it appreciably change the outcome of U.S. policy on the settlement issue?
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Israel/Palestine

Fresh Tactics and New Voices in the Movement for Justice and Freedom in the Middle East

From the chambers of Congress to the shores of the Mediterranean, nonviolent protesters are rising up against the Israeli Occupation in surprisingly innovative and effective ways. There’s a buzz, and it’s stirring the hive of the American Zionist establishment like never before as we, young Jews, apply our democratic values to the situation in Israel and Palestine. Young Jews are organizing within the Jewish establishment around the world to speak out against the Occupation.
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The Arab Awakening and the Israeli-Palestinian Connection

The stunning failure of the international commentariat to foresee the seismic shifts that are engulfing the Arab world today is reason enough to be guarded about what they are telling us now about the causes and meaning of the uprisings. Until events proved otherwise, many self-appointed experts confidently—sometimes arrogantly—explained that the global movement toward democracy had been spurned by the Arab world simply because liberty and equality were “not part of the Arab makeup.” So it must have come as quite a shock to them that the Arab people turned out to be not so different from the rest of the human race! So while caution is strongly advised, there are certain tentative deductions that I believe we can risk making even now.
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Israel/Palestine

Recognize Palestine! Recognize Israel!

The Network of Spiritual Progressives, Tikkun’s political action arm, is both pro-Israel and pro-Palestine. We are hopeful that UN recognition of Palestine would persuade Israel to freeze its expansion of settlements in the areas that were part of pre-1967 Palestine. We also hope that UN recognition would lead Israel to negotiate in good faith to create a Palestinian state and reach a just settlement of all remaining issues, ensuring security for Israel and Palestine.
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Israel/Palestine

No Partner for Peace? Reflections on the Limitations of J Street and the Jewish American Peace Camp During the Campaign for Palestinian Statehood

In its short but meteoric rise to relevance in the American Jewish community, J Street has attempted to expand the Jewish American peace camp by taking nuanced positions and poaching supporters from traditional Jewish organizations like AIPAC. But there is a major discrepancy between J Street’s repeated call for “bold and creative action” in pursuit of a two-state solution and its position paper defending the U.S. veto.
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