"It was different with Papa. He celebrated all the major holidays — Yom Kippur, Rosh Hashanah, Pesach — and he loved telling me Bible stories, but religion didn't have a very important place in his life. Once, during Mama's illness, I asked him if he believed in God. He gazed at me with that tender look, a look that spoke only of the powerlessness of love, and said, "You know, Sara, God doesn't need us to believe in him. All he wants is for us to act as if he were there." — from Paths of Desire, a novel by Emmanuel…Read More...
I hesitate to critique BDS, but there is still something in the campaign that troubles me — a sense that some on the left are inadvertently using boycott as a tool with which to sort through, measure, and reject other progressive voices. By Penina Eilberg-Schwartz Palestinians living in Israel are all too familiar with litmus tests, most of which boil down to the question of Israel’s “right to exist.” In its politics, most brazenly suggested in the 2014 nation-state bill which suggested to define Israel as the nation-state of the Jewish people, Israel demands that Palestinians in Israel both recognize…Read More... | 4 Comments
'So we're going out, and here's the deal: we'll only drink in places where people were murdered due to inter-group hatred.' The seventh and final installment. For other nights click here. One April night in 2003, my cousin Yaron decided he needed a bass player. He was growing as a local blues musician and figured that some accompaniment would do no harm. He told his girlfriend, Shir, that he's popping over to Mike's Place, a blues bar on Tel Aviv's promenade, and left. He returned shortly afterwards, covered in blood and in a state of shock. While the band played at…Read More...
On its next to last night, the journey leads away from the cities and, in a way, to another continent. For other nights click here. The papers promised a meteor shower. Here was a great excuse to take a spin out of town. I haven't been off the Jerusalem-Tel Aviv axis in a while (Bethlehem is essentially a Jerusalem suburb). Nothing sounded more appealing than heading into the dark hills to chase a shooting star or two. Ruthie was feeling a tad better and encouraged me to head out, but I was unsure. Then a surprise phone call called the shots.…Read More...
A year after the devastating war on Gaza, an activist visits human rights defenders still working among piles of rubble and roiling from trauma. By Jen Marlowe I crouched on the floor of the beat-up Mercedes yellow cab, so that I could film Yaser Abed Alkhafor at a better angle. We were driving slowly through Khuza’a, a town near the southern Gaza Strip city of Khan Younes. “We can see that the destruction in Khuza'a didn't target only one place, but it is mass destruction targeting the whole area,” Alkhafor said, pointing to the destroyed homes lining the road. Alkhafor,…Read More...
I don't always drink beer in bars with racist symbols on the wall. But when I do, it's for a good cause. Part five of the nighttime journey. For other nights click here. Saturday night we were back on the streets. Hundreds of left-leaning urbanites marching through central Tel Aviv, condemning the government for turning this land into a hothouse for inter-group violence. Pride flags flew alongside banners promoting unity and equality between Jews and Arabs. By now, the fateful morning of July 31 had claimed the life of Saad Dawabshe, father of baby Ali, who had passed away the morning…Read More...
Chapter four in the nighttime journey is a tale of two parties. For other nights click here. If you think the nights I skip in this chronicle are uneventful, think again fast. On Wednesday I was rushed to the airport with an immigration scandal. A young American who flew in to intern with a company for which I work was interrogated on arrival and then deported. The reason remained withheld but we suspected political bias. This is hardly an unusual occurrence these days. The intern handed her interrogators the number of the company head: a leader in alternative tourism, a National…Read More...
Part three. In which old friends reunite and talk about leaving. For other nights click here. Some time after sunset, the muezzin at Jaffa's Abu Nabout mosque called for prayer one last time. Meanwhile, protesters at the nearby Clock Square stretched a clothing line across the street. On the line hung baby clothes, reminders of the baby Ali Dwabsheh, who was burned alive. I crossed the street to take a photo, then returned to the side where the other protesters stood, almost tripping as I did over a bundle of clothes made to look like a dead Palestinian baby. Had…Read More... | 1 Comment
Part two. Following the attack, our night owl returns to Jerusalem in drag for a rally, and walks into an emotional pitfall. For other nights click here. Someone else was murdered on Thursday, the night of the Jerusalem Pride stabbing. In the northern West Bank village of Duma, a group of hooded men, most likely members of the extremist Jewish "Price Tag" cell, set fire to two family homes and left threatening graffiti in Hebrew on the walls. A baby, Ali Dawabsheh, was burned to death. His parents and bother were rescued but remain in an Israeli hospital in critical…Read More...
The plan was to write a leisurely travel journal: a record of Canaan's summer nights, but the journey began with a dark event: a stabbing at Jerusalem pride, and took on a different nature. Welcome to a seven-part, nocturnal diary of shock and recovery, a true story from an emotional land. For other nights click here. The plan is simple: I will only write about things that happened after dark. Still, I must begin with something that happened at dusk. It was 6:30 p.m. or so and we were walking in central West Jerusalem when six people got stabbed right…Read More... | 2 Comments
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The Iran Deal
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