Israel's military occupation over the Palestinian territories began in 1967, when a set of emergency regulations replaced their Jordanian & Egyptian rule. 50 years later, the Palestinians are still under occupation, their lands, water, and natural resources diverted for the benefit of the ruling military power - Israel. In the seeming lawlessness of the occupation, where a complex matrix of beaurocratic and legal control rules, settlers continue to establish Israeli colonies, destroy Palestinian agriculture, and periodically kill. For great illustrations see the Visualizing Palestine infographics, created by an international designer collective.
'Occupation is not my Judaism': Dozens of Jews from around the world come to practice civil disobedience in 10 days of direct action alongside Palestinian partners struggling against Israel's 50-year military occupation.
Video by Lia Tarachansky and Michael Schaeffer Omer-Man. Nov 30, 2016
A panel discussion on the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions movement with Dimitri Lascaris, Constantine Kristonis, and Lia Tarachansky. Sept 27, 2016.
12-Hour Truce in Gaza, Protests in the West Bank
TRNN's Lia Tarachansky reports from Jerusalem on how the Israeli army opened fire on West Bank protests against the war. July 25, 2014
Israel Using Teenager Kidnapping to Cripple Hamas
On Thursday, June 12, three settler Yeshiva students hitchhiking through the West Bank were supposedly kidnapped. Within hours Israeli security leaders announced the kidnapping was the work of Hamas, though failed to present any evidence to the claim. Hamas, which recently signed on to a transitional unity government with it's long-time rival Fatah in the Palestinian Authority has not claimed responsibility for the kidnapping, and instead some of its members questioned what benefit this action would bring the Islamist movement at this time.
Israel's "New West Bank"
In recent years, the government has adopted the so-called Prawer Plan, reversing several earlier decisions to recognize unrecognized Bedouin villages in the Negev Desert. The new plan, explained by Association for Civil Rights in Israel lawyer Rawia Abu Rabia, will relocate 40,000 Bedouins in southern Israel for the establishment of 10 Jewish villages in their place. The Real News' Lia Tarachansky speaks with Haia Noach, Executive Director of the Forum for Co-existance in the Negev, and Salim Abu Kian, from Umm el Hiran, one of two villages (along with A Tir) slated for evacuation.
Inside Israeli land grabs
Despite the Israeli government's support, funding, and approval of settlers, they are often presented in the media as in conflict with the state and the army. In this report, The Real News' Lia Tarachansky looks at this claim through a recent lecture by Shir Hever, an economist with the Alternative Information Center. A perfect example of the methodology Hever describes can be seen in the settlement of Kedumim which lies adjacent to the Palestinian village of Kaft Qadum. The Real News spoke to the village council of the Palestinian village and the associate mayor of the settlement about how they've expanded and the impact this has had on their lives.
Israel's "settlement freeze"
Toufic Haddad, co-author of Israel, the Palestinians, and the U.S. War on Terror, and Palestine correspondent for The Faster Times speaks in Jerusalem to Lia Tarachansky of The Real News about Israel's "settlement freeze." He says that accepting Israeli Prime Minister's offer to enter negotiations simply because of this partial and temporary move would be political suicide for the Palestinian Authority. He speak of the future of Palestinian politics and the death of the "peace process."
Israeli Violent Perpetrators -
Not Just a Few "Bad Apples"
Following an incident of an Israeli soldier cocking his weapon at a Palestinian teenager holding nothing but prayer beads spread on social media a solidarity movement by fellow soldiers grew online. The Real News' Lia Tarachansky and political correspondent speak to Rela Mazali, one of the founders of New Profile, an Israeli organization that works on demilitarization in society.
Netanyahu Attacks Boycott As Campaign Enters New Phase
Following Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin "Bibi" Netanyahu's AIPAC speech earlier this month where he announced that "we shall boycott the boycotters", journalist and author Michel Warschawski spoke to The Real News' Lia Tarachansky about the Israeli government's approach to the growing boycott movement. The campaign's growth from civil actions of individuals to major European banks and corporations signals a change of tide, he says, and its timing, at the end of the self-appointed deadline of the US-mediated talks between the Israeli government and the Palestinian Authority, has the Israelis nervous. The Real News also spoke to attorney Sawsan Zaher of Adalah about the government's approach to those at home who support the boycott..
Israeli Gov't Forms Strategy
to Fight Boycott
Omar Barghouti is an independent Palestinian researcher, commentator and human rights activist committed to upholding international law and universal human rights. He is a founding member of the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI) and the Palestinian Civil Society Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign against Israel. He holds a bachelor’s and master’s degrees in electrical engineering from Columbia University, NY, and a master's degree in philosophy (ethics) from Tel Aviv University. He is a freelance dance choreographer and trainer. He is the author of Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions: The Global Struggle for Palestinian Rights (Haymarket, 2011).
Israelis and Palestinians Turn to One-State Solution
On Thursday, Nov 14 the two chief negotiators of the Palestinian Authority handed their resignation from the talks with Israel, mediated by the US. Appointed Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas says the resignations do not affect the PA's commitment to this round which began in July and is scheduled to complete in April. But many on the ground see no hope in the negotiations, and have long ago turned to a different option. As Michel Warschawski, author of The Bi-National Challenge says "treating this geographical space from the river to the sea as one unit does not necessitate treating the people who live here as a collection of individuals." While the fruitless negotiations drudge, various proposals for alternative solutions grounded in equality from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea emerge on both sides of the West Bank segregation wall.
Israel Conceded to Palestinian Prisoner's Hunger Strike
On Sunday, Mach 17th, Israeli authorities conceded to the ongoing Palestinian prisoner�s hunger strike, releasing one of the four men who have gone more than a hundred days without food. Ayman Sharawneh, who is 53 was released to the Gaza Strip, under the condition he will not return to his West Bank home for ten years. His release marks the third high-profile success of the Hunger Strike Palestinian prisoners have begun nearly two years ago. The Real News' Lia Tarachansky reports on the West Bank-wide protests in solidarity with the prisoners on hunger strike in recent months and speaks to Ran Cohen, director of Physicians for Human Rights whose doctors succeeded in visiting some of the prisoners.
Israeli Army Killing Palestinian Protestors with Impunity say Activists
Last week, in one of the first actions of its kind, activists released the names of Israeli soldiers involved in the killing of a Palestinian protester. Mustafa Tamimi, a 28 year-old demonstrator from the village of Nabi Saleh, was killed when a soldier shot a tear gas canister at his face in December last year. Attorney Emily Schaeffer of Yesh Din spoke with The Real News' Lia Tarachansky about why IDF investigations lead to little justice. Maj. Avital Liebovitch, the IDF Spokeswoman questioned why the army is even required to investigate crimes by soldiers, and Abir Kopty of the Palestinian Popular Struggle Coordination Committee spoke about the dozens of protesters who have been killed in recent years in demonstrations.
State Dep't Defines Israeli Settler Violence as Terrorism
Last week the Israeli media storm around a potential attack on Iran quieted down as internal tensions and the economy drove the headlines. Two violent attacks on Palestinians, one a firebombing of a Palestinian taxi in the West Bank that left six members of one family in hospital, and an attempted lynch on three Palestinian youth in downtown Jerusalem dominated the Israeli press. Meanwhile the US State Department issued its annual country terrorism report, redefining settler violence against Palestinians which saw 120 casualties last year as terrorism. The Real News' Lia Tarachansky summarizes last week's coverage and speaks to +972 Magazine's Yossi Gurvitz about the context of these attacks.
Two of Mass Palestinian Prisoner's Hunger Strike "On Verge of Death"
On Monday, the Israeli supreme court rejected the appeal of two Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike for 70 days. The appeal rejection of Bilal Diab and Thaer Halahleh was described as a death sentence by Physicians for Human Rights whose doctors have been denied access to the prisoners. Since the Israeli occupation began in 1967, 40% of the Palestinian male population has been imprisoned at some point in their lives. In mid-April, the day Khader Adnan, a prisoner on s 66 day hunger strike, was freed, more than 1,600 Palestinian prisoners went on a mass hunger strike. In solidarity, hundreds protested outside Ramle Jail where high-profile Political Prisoner Ahmad Sa’adat is held. Israeli police attacked the protest, arresting 17. A local court forbide them to communicate with each other for 15 days, sentencing them to five day on house arrest. The Real News' Lia Tarachansky spoke with Adameer's Sahar Francis, Physicians for Human Rights' Anat Litvin, activist Abir Kopty, and former prisoners.
Israel Denies Entry to Hundreds in Day of Action
Over 1500 activists from 15 countries attempted to fly to Ben Gurion Airport to travel to Bethlehem in the occupied Palestinian territories. They were invited by Palestinian activists to help build a school and protest Israel's control of all access points to the occupied territories. Hundreds were prevented from even boarding their planes and instead staged protests at various airports. Dozens were deported upon arrival while dozens arrested and transferred to Givon prison in central Israel. Israeli activists attempted to hold signs welcoming them at the airport but were immediately arrested and given a 15 day distancing order from the airport. The Real News' Lia Tarachansky reports from the airport.
In recent years Israel's control over the Palestinian people in the occupied territories has changed. While the presence of the Israeli army has been greatly reduced, the occupation has taken a more invisible form. In her new book The Bureaucracy of Occupation, attorney Yael Berda sheds light on how the Israeli secret service (the Shabak) exploits every point of contact with Palestinians, especially the imposed permit system, to recruit informants to further its control over the population. Activist Anan Quzmar of Birzeit University's Rights to Education campaign tells The Real News' Lia Tarachansky how this form of "phantom control" makes political involvement and activism nearly impossible.
One Dies, Dozens Injured in Palestinian Day of Protest
March 30th marks the Palestinian annual "Land Day". This year protests were organized under the banner of a “Global March to Jerusalem”, to mark the point that millions of Palestinians are prevented from reaching the holy city from Arab countries, Gaza, and the West Bank. In solidarity, tens of thousands protested in Lebanon, Jordan, Syria, and in the occupied Palestinian Territories. The Real News' Lia Tarachansky reports from East Jerusalem where Israeli forces met protesters with policemen on horses. At least one demonstrator died in Gaza and dozens were injured in the various demonstrations.
Palestinian on Hunger Strike "in Mortal Danger"
After more than a month on hunger strike, Hanaa Shalabi is in "immediate mortal danger" and at "risk of coma" according to a Physicians for Human Rights doctor. Shalabi's strike came at the heels of another high profile campaign by Khader Adnan who survived a 66 day hunger strike before the Israeli authorities decided to release him. Both were arrested under Administrative Detention, a military order that allows Israeli authorities to arrest anyone and hold them indefinitely, without charge or trial. The Real News' Lia Tarachansky met with the families of the two prisoners and spoke to lawyers Shawan Jabarin for Al Haq and Sahar Francis of Addameer about the mass imprisonment of Palestinians
Palestinian "Freedom Riders" Challenge Segregation
On Tuesday six Palestinian activists boarded Israeli busses in an attempt to challenge the system of segregation in the West Bank. They were arrested at Hizmeh checkpoint, interrogated by Israel's internal intelligence agency, the Shabak, and released. In the West Bank, segregation is both visible with the separation wall, fence, and separate cities for Israelis and Palestinians and invisible with separate legal and security systems for the two peoples. The West Bank and the Gaza Strip have been under Israeli military occupation since 1967. The Real News' Lia Tarachansky spoke with Fesal Al Hatib, a Palestinian living in Hizmeh, a village divided in half by a road and the Wall.
Israel to stop Flotilla "without physical contact"
On Sunday, a convoy of activist ships known as the Freedom Flotilla II â€“ Stay Human set sail for the shores of Gaza. The convoy is the tenth such attempt by the Gaza Freedom Movement to break the naval blockade on the strip. Ray McGovern, a retired CIA officer on board the US boat and Gerry MacLochlainn, an Irish politician, on board the Irish boat spoke to The Real News about the pressure the US and Israeli government put on Mediterranean countries to stop the Flotilla from sailing. Also on Sunday, the Israeli Government Press Office issued a release, warning foreign journalists that if they are on board the ships, they are liable to be banned from Israel for ten years. Joseph Dana, a journalist with The Nation and +972 Magazine spoke on why the Israeli government finds this activist effort so threatening. The Real Newsâ€™ Lia Tarachansky also spoke with Lieutenant Colonel Avital Liebovitz about the Israeli navyâ€™s intended response to the convoy.s.
Palestinian Political Prisoner: 'I reject Israel's laws'
Last Sunday the trial of Bassem Tamimi began. Tamimi is the central activist in the West Bank village of Nabi Saleh, North East of Ramallah and was arrested on March 24th of this year. In his appearance before the court, Tamimi delivered a statement saying “I do not know if my actions violate your Occupation laws. As far as I am concerned, these laws do not apply to me and are devoid of meaning. Having been enacted by Occupation authorities, I reject them and cannot recognize their validity.â€ The Real News’ Lia Tarachansky spoke with his wife, Neriman Tamimi, as well as to Diana Alzeer, an activist with the March 15 Movement whose demand for Palestinian national unity helped create pressure in the recent reconciliation between the Fateh and Hamas parties.
The Israeli Summer and the Occupation
Shir Hever is an economic researcher in the Alternative Information Center, a Palestinian-Israeli organization active in Jerusalem and Beit-Sahour. Researching the economic aspect of the Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories, some of his research topics include the international aid to the Palestinians and to Israel, the effects of the Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories on the Israeli economy, and the boycott, divestment and sanctions campaigns against Israel. His work also includes giving lectures and presentations on the economy of the occupation. His first book: Political Economy of Israel's Occupation: Repression Beyond Exploitation, has been published by Pluto Press.
Gideon Levy - the "peace process"
is a joke (Pt2)
Gideon Levy, one of Israel's most prominent journalists and a frequent commentator on Ha'aretz Daily, speaks to The Real News' Lia Tarachansky on the so-called "Peace Process," which he has covered since negotiations began 25 years ago. Levy says today Israel attempts to appear appeasing by pushing for negotiations but the Benjamin "Bibi" Netanyahu government, like previous Israeli governments doesn't plan on seriously implementing any element of the negotiated agreements.
Gideon Levy on Israel's addiction (Pt1)
Gideon Levy, one of the most prominent Israeli journalists working with Ha'aretz speaks to The Real News' Lia Tarachansky about Israel's addiction to the occupation of the Palestinian Territories. He says there are two ways to deal with a drug addict, you can either help them get more drugs, and this may be perceived as care, but it is not friendship. A real friend helps the drug addict get over their addiction. Levy says the Jewish lobby has decided to take the former route, but he is hoping that the United States and the Obama Administration will take the latter.
Historic protest in Ras al-Amud, Jerusalem
For the first time in decades, Palestinian activists in Ras al-Amud, a neighborhood of Jerusalem south east of the Old City, invited Jewish Israeli activists to join them in their protest against a fortress settlement in their area. The neighborhood is the site of nearly daily confrontations between Palestinian youth and Israeli forces, and is sometimes referred to as the "daily intifada". It is located in an area known as E1, or the "linchpin settlement" which if won over by settlers, would officially divide the West Bank into a south and an North half. The Real News' Lia Tarachansky spoke to Michel Warschawski, the author of On the Border, and Sarah Beninga, a central activist in the Jerusalem Solidarity movement about the demonstration where for the first time Israeli police used tasers, about the strategic importance of Ras al-Amud, and about the behind-the-scenes of building solidarity
Palestinians break Syrian border
on day of protests
On the 63rd commemoration of the Nakba (Arabic: Catastrophe), Palestinians coordinate a historic demonstration. Protests at the Lebanese, Syrian, West Bank, and Gazan borders and inside Egypt took place. Many died as a result of live fire, and hundreds were injured both from Israeli forces and others such as the Egyptian and Lebanese armies. The Real News' Lia Tarachansky reports from the Qalandiya refugee camp in the West Bank where thousands demonstrated and summarizes the historic day in which refugees succeeded in breaking through the Syrian border and reuniting with Palestinians in the Golan Heights.
Consequences of Gaza Activist's Killing
On April 15, 2011, Italian journalist and activist Vittorio Arrigoni was kidnapped and killed in the Gaza strip. According to a video released by his kidnappers, they belonged to a Salafi group, which Hamas identified included a former Hamas policeman. While the mainstream media portrayed the killing as an act of an extremist group identifying with Al Qaeda, many are saying the group, as other Salafi groups operating in Gaza represents a growing force from inside Hamas itself. Arrigoni's brutal killing was commemorated in the West Bank, in Gaza, and in Israel, in conjunction with his funeral in Italy. The consequences of the incident however reach furthre than the impact on his family and friends as other international organizations and NGOs rethink their security measures in the Gaza strip, sources say.
Palestinian village inspires movement
Every Friday for five years, Palestinian, Israeli, and international activists protest the annexation of the lands of the Bil'in village by Israel's segregation wall. Their grassroots effort won them a major victory in Israeli courts in 2007. Now, at the fifth Bil'in conference, Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad and representatives of all the major political parties endorsed their struggle. Khaleda Jarrar of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine criticized the Fatah-led Palestinian Authority for its recent repression of Palestinian political activists as part of the security collaboration outlined in the Oslo agreements.
Palestinian teens killed as tensions rise
Four teenagers in the West Bank villages of Iraq Burin and Awarta were killed this weekend by Israeli soldiers. Initially the army denied the use of live ammunition but an X-ray of an M-16 bullet lodged in the skull of one of the killed disproved the claim. In the second incident, where Israeli soldiers detained two teenage farmers, the army claimed the Palestinians were shot (one with five bullets and the other with at least two) because they attempted to attack a soldier with pitchforks, knives, or axes. The Real News' Lia Tarachansky spoke to Edo Medicks and Jesse Rosenfeld of The Daily Nuisance. Rosenfeld and Medicks attended the funerals at Iraq Burin when the shooting in Awarta took place and investigated what actually took place.
Hebron Palestinians protest closures
Protests in the Occupied Palestinian city of Hebron continue for a fifth consecutive day after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced a new Israeli "heritage" plan. In his plan, national and holy sites in Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories will be classified as Israeli "heritage." This move comes at a time when tensions in the city are already high due to settler takeovers and the commemoration of the 16th annual day of solidarity in memory of the 1994 Cave of the Patriarchs massacre.
Palestinians tear segregation barrier
During the weekly protest in the Palestinian village of Bil'in, thousands of activists assembled to celebrate five years of non-violent resistance. This form of popular struggle has spread to many other Palestinian villages and areas in East Jerusalem. The protests are made to show opposition to the confiscation of roughly half of the village's land by the Israeli Jewish-only settlement colony of Modi'in Illit. In 2007, after the village protested every Friday for almost 3 years, the Israeli Supreme Court ruled that the barrier does not serve a security purpose and ordered it rerouted. The Israeli army however, did not start to reroute the barrier until last week and informed the village that it will only return 364 (or 60%) of its 575 taken acres.
Israel's assassination policy
Following the murder of an Israeli settler, Israeli armed forces invade the Palestinian city of Nablus and assassinate three men. The Real News' Lia Tarachansky speaks to their surviving relatives as they describe how soldiers killed the three without an attempt to arrest them. Days later, sources revealed the three were unconnected to the original incident involving the Israeli settler, however because of Israel's practice of extra judicial killings, no trial will be held and evidence will remain classified from the public.
Region concludes Gaza Siege protests
Over the weekend, a march of thousands of Israelis through Tel Aviv marked the end of 10 days of protest in the region against the siege on Gaza. Activists in Cairo, the port of Al- Arish, Tel Aviv, the Northern border with Gaza, and in the Occupied Palestinian cities of Nablus, Ramallah, and Bethlehem brought global attention to the current situation and the effect of the ongoing closures on the Gaza strip.
Gaza Freedom March in Israel
For months international, Israeli, and Palestinian activists have been planning the Gaza Freedom March. Organizers hoped an international delegation of 1300 activists from around the world would break the siege on Gaza by marching through Gaza to the northern border and through the Erez crossing, join the Israeli march. The Real News attended the Israeli side of the protest, and though the Egyptian government prevented the activists from entering Gaza, hundreds gathered to raise awareness of the desperate situation in Gaza a year after Operation Cast Lead.
Gaza Freedom March in Israel
After World Bank issues report, commissioned by the Palestinian Authority on the condition of water accessibility in the West Bank, Israel claims the reports authors are biased. To understand the conditions on the ground, how they've been addressed, and whether the so-called peace process succeeded in addressing them, The Real News speaks to LifeSource Project, a non-profit organization focusing solely on the issue of water. Susan Koppelman and Taysir Arabasi tell The Real News' Lia Tarachansky the Mountain Aquifer, the biggest supply of fresh underground water is pumped by Israel even though it lies almost entirely in the West Bank. They also speak about restrictions on Palestinians to dig water wells, and their dependence on the Israeli national water corporation, Mekorot.