The “Good Faith” of the Usurpers –pre Rosh Hashanah reflections by Aryeh Cohen

 

This past week the Jerusalem District Court decided that the Mitzpeh Kramim settlement—which no one denies was built on private Palestinian land, and no one contests that that land was taken from the original Palestinian owners by extra-legal means—can remain in the hands of the current settler residents. The reason the court gave was that the deal that was made between the settlers and the World Zionist Organization, who had been given ownership over the land by the army, was executed in “good faith”—tom lev in Hebrew, pure or whole heart. “Good faith” as we shall see, is nothing more than a legal term of art rather than a phrase which describes the actual intentions of any of the parties between the initial Palestinian owners and the current Jewish settler owners. It being the week before Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, the idea of good faith or pure heart is in the front of peoples’ minds. Maimonides in his Laws of Repentance writes: “Anyone who confesses verbally but does not commit in their heart to abandon [their previous actions], behold this is like one who ritually immerses [in a mikveh for purification purposes] and is holding vermin [which is radically impure] in their hand, and the immersion is not effective until they throw the vermin away.” This powerful illustration sets in stark relief the type of “good faith” that the court was satisfied with.

Palestinians Facing the Normalization Dilemma by Yoav Peck

THE NORMALIZATION DILEMMA

by Yoav Peck

With the death of Uri Avneri, we have lost one of our bravest and clearest voices. I knew Uri and liked him, we met several times in the last few years. In one of his last written statements, Uri writes: “We must decide who we are, what we want, where we belong. Otherwise we will be condemned to a permanent state of impermanence.” In this neighborhood, impermanence is a pretty permanent state of affairs.

Palestinians Fearing “Normalization” of the Occupation–A critical perspective by Yoav Peck of the Sulha Peace Project

For 18 years, the Sulha Peace Project has brought together Palestinians from across the territories with Israelis from around the country, in order to hold people-to-people dialogue and solidarity-building. Of late, many of our Palestinian activists have endured harsh anti-normalization criticism from their friends and relatives, and some have been dragged into long, humiliating interrogations at the hands of Palestinian security. The director of a site where we held a recent gathering was harassed by the Palestinian Authority for renting us space. As we rumble into the 62nd year of Israel’s occupation of the West Bank and Gaza, it may be useful to revisit the contention, strident in various sectors of the Palestinian public, that cooperation with Israelis represents “normalization” (tatbiyah) and is thus forbidden. How is normalization defined?

Homage to the Syrian Revolution by Andrew Heintz

Tikkun Editor’s Note: Tikkun does not have a position on the issues raised by the Syrian revolution, except to say that we oppose all violence and know that the forces seeking to replace Syrian dictator Assad were committed to non-violence until Assad starting torturing and killing them. We welcome critiques of the perspective put forward by Andrew Heintz below. Homage to the Syrian Revolution
The American Left has had an ongoing war of words about what to do about Syria. The result has illuminated the consequences of groupthink and dogmatic anti-imperial absolutism. It has been heartbreaking to witness so-called leftists refuse to recognize the sadistic brutality of the Bashar al-Assad regime.

Dr. Jerome Segal forms Bread and Roses Party

BREAD AND ROSES – NEW PARTY ESTABLISHED
 

A new political party has been formed in Maryland, ahead of the November elections. It’s being spearheaded by philosopher Dr. Jerome Segal, a conflict resolution expert at the University of Maryland, who received over 20,000 votes in his run against Ben Cardin in the Democratic Senate Primary in June.  

Earlier this week, Segal submitted 19,500 petitions signed by Maryland residents to the state Board of Elections, in support of the establishment of the socialist “Bread and Roses” party. Under state law, ten thousand signatures are required to organize a political party.  

Segal spent more than $1.4 million on his campaign against Cardin in the Senate primary.

Frozen Out

A web series about gentrification and climate change doesn’t just shed light on an important intersection of issues, it is a shining example of how communities can take control over public narratives.

Coming Home

The movement for a new economy is built on a spiritual materialism that calls upon us to return to our true natures as individuals, communities, and societies. An overview of the vision and progress in an exciting community of visionaries.

When My Mother Wanted to Die

Margaret Morganroth Gullette lays bare the ageist struggle that old people face: “invisibility and hypervisibility, intolerance of our appearance, lack of audiences for our subjectivities, underestimation of our trials, dislike of our alleged characteristics or disgust at our apparent weaknesses.”

Introduction to The Next Economy

An economy in line with our deepest spiritual values is not only possible, it is already emerging around us. The feature section of this issue explores a few dimensions of recent developments.