Share |

Content about Israel

June 29, 2024

Israel’s Supreme Court issued an order demanding the Benjamin Netanyahu government provide an update on conditions in the Sde Teiman detention facility, where the government has been holding Palestinian detainees from the war in Gaza. The order came in response to a challenge from a constellation of human rights organizations, including the Association for Civil Rights in IsraelPhysicians for Human Rights—Israel (PHRI), and the Public Committee Against Torture in Israel, seeking to shut down the prison over allegations of harsh abuses there. Sde Teiman, in the Negev desert, was the focus of a CNN investigation into the treatment of Palestinians detained during Israel's war with Hamas. Whistleblowers from the detention center spoke to CNN, describing scenes of torture and severe dehumanizing conditions.

Israel's Supreme Court issued an order June 23 demanding the Benjamin Netanyahu government provide an update on conditions in the Sde Teiman detention facility, where the government has been holding Palestinian detainees from the war in Gaza.

June 3, 2024

The Israel Defense Forces took "operational control" of the Philadelphi Corridor, the strip of territory running along the border between Egypt and Gaza, claiming it was being used by Hamas to traffic weapons into the Strip. In the operation, the IDF's 162nd Division said it uncovered dozens of rocket launchers in a network of tunnels under the Corridor. The Corridor, known to the Egyptians as Salah al-Din, had been established as a demilitarized zone under the 1978 Camp David Accords, and its re-occupation by Israel as led to fears that Egypt will "tear up the peace treaty" between the two countries.

The Israel Defense Forces on May 30 took "operational control" of the Philadelphi Corridor, the strip of territory running along the border between Egypt and Gaza, claiming it was being used by Hamas to traffic weapons into the Strip. In the operation, the IDF's 162nd Division said it uncovered dozens of rocket launchers in a network of tunnels under the C

June 1, 2024

For months, groups on the Israeli far right have traveled to the crossings where aid is moved from the West Bank to the Gaza border in an effort to disrupt the shipments—even attacking divers and attempting to destroy the supplies. But now, other groups of Israelis are boarding buses from Jerusalem and Tel Aviv and heading to those crossings to try and help the trucks complete their passage into Gaza to deliver the aid. This has sparked stand-offs near the border between right-wing groups such as Tzav 9 and pro-coexistence groups such as Standing Together. Activists from Standing Together have helped clear roads and reload boxes of humanitarian aid that had been thrown off trucks by Tzav 9 followers. 

For months, groups on the Israeli far right have traveled to the crossings where aid is moved from the West Bank to the Gaza border in an effort to disrupt the shipments—even attacking divers and attempting to destroy the supplies.

May 22, 2024

International Criminal Court (ICC) prosecutor Karim AA Khan announced that he has applied for arrest warrants against Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Yoav Gallant, as well as senior Hamas leaders, for crimes committed during the ongoing Israel-Hamas war. The officials face various charges of war crimes and crimes against humanity under the Rome Statute.

International Criminal Court (ICC) prosecutor Karim AA Khan announced May 20 that he has applied for arrest warrants against Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Yoav Gallant, as well as senior Hamas leaders, f

May 4, 2024

Amid the police crackdown on Gaza protests coast-to-coastdrawing concern from the UN human rights office, hostage advocacy organizations, rights groups and co-existence activists have been protesting in Israel, and similarly meeting with repression. They are, at a minimum, demanding a deal with Hamas for release of the hostages and putting off the promised invasion of Rafah. While far-right Israelis have been blocking the roads to the Gaza crossings to prevent aid trucks from entering, the group Rabbis for Ceasefire held a march to the border of the Strip to deliver food in defiance of the siege, and were met with arrests. Such voices begin to de-escalate the dangerous polarization which has also infected the scene on American campuses. Bill Weinberg discusses in Episode 224 of the CounterVortex podcast. Listen on SoundCloud or via Patreon

Amid the police crackdown on Gaza protests coast-to-coast,

April 20, 2024

The US vetoed a resolution to approve Palestine's application for full membership in the United Nations. The resolution before the Security Council was put forward by Algeria, and received 12 votes in favor—more than the required nine. Two countries, the UK and Switzerland, abstained. The US defended its veto, claiming that unilateral recognition at the UN would jeopardize the two-state solution. Palestine's representative at the UN, Riyad Mansour, expressed determination, saying the US veto "will not break our will." He added: "The State of Palestine is inevitable. It is real. Perhaps they see it as far away, but we see it as near, and we are the faithful." 

The US vetoed a resolution to approve Palestine's application for full membership in the United Nations on April 18.

April 12, 2024

The UN Human Rights Council adopted a resolution, A/HRC/55/L.30, reiterating the Security Council's call for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza—and further calling for an embargo and prevention of the supply of weapons to Israel by UN Member States. Simultaenously, 40 Democratic members of the US House of Representatives signed a letter to President Joe Biden urging him to cease arms transfers to Israel in the wake of the air-strike that killed seven humanitarian aid workers in Gaza. Meanwhile in Germany, human rights lawyers filed a motion in the Berlin Administrative Court to halt the Federal Republic's arms exports to Israel. The lawyers claim that the German government has committed the crime of aiding and abetting in the genocide of the Palestinian people living in Gaza by continuing to supply Israel with arms.

The UN Human Rights Council on April 5 adopted a resolution, A/HRC/55/L.30, reiterating the Security Council's 

April 11, 2024

In Episode 220 of the CounterVortex podcastBill Weinberg discusses two new books on the related themes of the Jewish Question and the Question of Palestine. One, The New American Anti-Semitism: The Left, the Right, and the Jews by Benjamin Ginsberg, is dangerously deluded. The other, The No-State Solution: A Jewish Manifesto by Daniel Boyarin, begins to move the discussion in the right direction. Weinberg goes further, callling for pan-Semitic unity between Jews and Arabs in repudiation of racism, imperialism and colonialism in all forms—including both Zionism and anti-Semitism.

In Episode 220 of the CounterVortex podcastBill Weinberg discusses two new books on the related themes of the Jewish Question and the Question of Palestine.

March 12, 2024

United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Volker Türk released a statement condemning Israel's latest expansion of settlements in the West Bank as well as the marked increase in "illegal" Israeli settlements over the last year, along with increasing extremist settler violence against Palestinians residing in the territory. Türk stated: "The West Bank is already in crisis. Yet, settler violence and settlement-related violations have reached shocking new levels, and risk eliminating any practical possibility of establishing a viable Palestinian State."

United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Volker Türk released a statement March 8 condemning Israel's latest expansion of settlements in the West Bank as well as the marked increase in "illegal" Isra

February 27, 2024

statement released by the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights on behalf of United Nations rights experts warns countries against the transfer of war material to Israel, as such transfers could constitute violations international humanitarian law if weapons are used contrary to the Geneva Conventions. Invoking the recent Word Court orders concerning Israel's siege and bombardment of Gaza, the statement asserts that "states must accordingly refrain from transferring any weapon or ammunition—or parts for them—if it is expected, given the facts and past patterns of behaviour, that they would be used to violate international law."

statement released Feb.

February 22, 2024

In Episode 213 of the CounterVortex podcast, Bill Weinberg notes how divergent responses to the ethnic cleansing of the Palestinians and mass internment of the Uyghurs reveal the West’s shifting definition of genocide. Tragically, elements of the Palestinian leadership merely reverse the double standard, causing elements of the exiled Uyghur leadership to balk at supporting the Palestinians. Yet another example of how a global divide-and-rule racket is the essence of the state system. Illustrating the irony, the same corporate nexus is involved in putting in place the surveillance state that monitors the Uyghurs for China and the Palestinians for Israel. Fortunately, principled voices of dissent among both the Palestinians and the Uyghurs are calling for Palestinian-Uyghur solidarity.

In Episode 213 of the CounterVortex podcastBill Weinberg notes how divergent responses to the ethnic cleansing of the Palest

February 15, 2024

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu ordered the Israeli military to draw up plans for the "evacuation" of Palestinians from Rafah in southern Gaza as it prepares to launch a full-scale assault on the area. Where people would be evacuated to—and how—remains unclear. Over one million Palestinians forcibly displaced by Israel's military campaign—now entering its fifth month—have been pushed into Rafah. Aid groups warn that there is nowhere left for people to flee to. People in Rafah are already experiencing disease and starvation, and aid operations are struggling to meet even basic needs. A ground invasion would "exponentially increase what is already a humanitarian nightmare," UN Secretary-General António Guterres said.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu ordered the Israeli military on Feb.

February 15, 2024

UNRWA, the UN agency for Palestinian refugees, was plunged into crisis when Israel accused 12 of its Gaza employees of involvement in Hamas' Oct. 7 attack on Israel. In response to Israel's claims, the US, UK, Germany, and other top donor countries suspended funding to UNRWA. In a statement, some two dozen aid organizations said they are "deeply concerned and outraged" by the suspension of funding, as some 2.3 million Gazans face "starvation, looming famine and an outbreak of disease under Israel's continued indiscriminate bombardment and deliberate deprivation of aid." 

UNRWA, the UN’s agency for Palestine refugees, was plunged into crisis on Jan. 26 when Israel accused 12 of its Gaza employees of involvement in Hamas’ deadly Oct.

January 28, 2024

The International Court of Justice ordered Israel to "take all measures within its power" to prevent breaches of the Genocide Convention in the Gaza Strip, but declined to order a ceasefire, following proceedings instituted by South Africa. The court also directed Israel to punish calls for genocide against Palestinians in Gaza, to enable the provision of "basic services and humanitarian assistance" to residents of Gaza, to preserve evidence relating to potential Genocide Convention breaches, and to submit a report regarding its compliance with the court's order within one month. In its interim ruling, the court stressed that it is not yet determining whether Israel breached the Genocide Convention but is acting to protect the rights of Palestinians ahead of a final decision.

The International Court of Justice ordered Israel on Jan.

January 23, 2024

The genocide case brought against Israel at the International Court of Justice charges that "Israel has damaged and destroyed numerous centres of Palestinian learning and culture" in the Gaza Strip, including schools, libraries, religious sites and places of historical importance. The United Nations Educational, Scientific & Cultural Organization (UNESCO) reports that in the two-and-a-half months of bombardment, more than 200 schools have been damaged—around 40% of the total number in the Strip, about 40 of them seriously. UNESCO is also attempting to monitor damage to heritage sites using satellite data and sources on the ground. The agency has especially expressed concern over the ruins of fourth-century Saint Hilarion Monastery, which has been placed under "provisional enhanced protection." The oldest mosque in Gaza, the Omari Mosque, has been severely damaged in Israeli bombardment.

The genocide case brought against Israel at the International Court of Justice charges that "Israel has damaged and destroyed numerous centres of Palestinian learning and culture" in the Gaza Strip, including schools, libraries, religio

January 23, 2024

After more than 100 days of war and Israeli siege, every single person in Gaza is hungry, and a quarter of the population—or around 500,000 people—is starving, UN experts warned. The aid response is falling short of what is needed to prevent a deadly combination of hunger, malnutrition, and disease, four UN agencies said, calling for a "fundamental step change in the flow of humanitarian aid into Gaza." Without it, deaths from starvation and disease could soon surpass the already staggering toll from bombardment and combat, which has reached nearly 25,000 people, according to health authorities in Gaza.

After more than 100 days of war and Israeli siege, every single person in Gaza is hungry, and a quarter of the population—or around 500,000 people—is starving, UN experts warned on Jan. 16.

January 21, 2024

In Episode 209 of the CounterVortex podcastBill Weinberg takes stock of the frightening international escalation set off by the Gaza cataclysm, with Yemen, Syria, IraqIran and Pakistan all coming under aerial bombardment over the past week, in a cascading regional crisis. The 1937 aerial bombardment of the Spanish town of Guernica by Nazi warplanes shocked the world. Today, what happened there is a near-daily occurrence in countries around the world. And the media ("mainstream," "alternative" and "social") are more concerned with how the various actors line up in the Great Power game than the horrific realities on the ground. Listen on SoundCloud or via Patreon.

In Episode 209 of the CounterVortex podcast, Bill Weinberg takes stock of the frightening international escalation set off by the Gaza cataclysm

January 4, 2024

Eighteen-year-old Tal Mitnick from Tel Aviv has become the first Israeli to refuse mandatory military service since Israel launched its assault on the besieged Gaza Strip. Mitnick was summoned to Tel Hashomer recruitment center, where he declared himself to be a conscientious objector, and was sentenced to 30 days in military prison. Mitnick is one of 230 Israeli youth who signed an open letter in early September, prior to the war, announcing their intention to refuse their draft orders as part of a protest against efforts by Israel's far-right government to restrict the power of the judiciary. Connecting the judicial coup to Israel's long-standing military rule over Palestinians, the signatories—under the banner of "Youth Against Dictatorship"— declared that they would not serve in the army "until democracy is secured for all who live within the jurisdiction of the Israeli government."

Eighteen-year-old Tal Mitnick from Tel Aviv has become the first Israeli to refuse mandatory military service since Israel launched its assault on the besieged Gaza Strip. Mitnick was summoned to Tel Hashomer recruitment center, where on Dec. 26 he declared himself to be a conscientious objector, and was sentenced to 30 days in military prison.

December 18, 2023

There have been resounding calls from across the world for a long-term ceasefire to bring an end to more than two months of bombardment and a spiralling humanitarian catastrophe in the Gaza Strip. Over 20,000 people have now been killed by Israel's aerial campaign and ground invasion, according to the health ministry in the Strip, with over 80% of the 2.3 million residents of the enclave displaced from their homes. While Washington has continued to support Israel’s war effort (including through massive weapons transfers), Israel has paid little heed to belated US calls to try to limit civilian casualties and allow more access for humanitarian aid. Israel now says its war against Hamas could last months. With aid agencies already struggling to operate, amid food shortages and outbreaks of disease, the impact of a prolonged war in the Strip challenges the imagination.

Globally, there have been resounding calls for a long-term ceasefire to bring an end to more than two months of bloodshed and a spiralling humanitarian catastrophe in the Gaza Strip.

November 30, 2023

UN experts called for prompt, transparent and independent investigations into possible war crimes and crimes against humanity perpetrated in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including the Gaza Strip, since Israel's new military offensive began last month. "Independent investigators must be given the necessary resources, support and access required to conduct prompt, thorough and impartial investigations into crimes allegedly committed by all parties to the conflict," the experts said, calling on Israel, the Palestinian Authority and the de factoauthorities in Gaza to cooperate fully with investigations.

UN experts Nov. 27 called for prompt, transparent and independent investigations into possible war crimes and crimes against humanity perpetrated in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including the Gaza Strip, since Israel's new military offensive began last month.

November 16, 2023

Since the Gaza bombardment began, three joint Jewish-Arab gatherings for coexistence and mutual solidarity have been held in Haifa, hosted by the Israeli city's Ahmadiyya Mahmud Mosque. The Ahmadiyya Muslim Community convened meetings, bringing together representatives from various faiths, including Jewish rabbis, Christian pastors, Muslim and Druze imams, and even a Buddhist monk. The meetings have drawn up to 600 attendees. The Ahmadiyya amir of the Holy Lands, Muhammad Sharif Odeh, urged Jewish guests not to justify collective retaliation: "It is haram [unlawful] to kill civilians and innocent people—this is not the right way, there are other solutions, without weapons. Muslims and Jews have lived together for more than 1,300 years, and Jews were given their rights under the Muslim rule... Muslims and Jews should know that not speaking up in the face of oppression destroys the human feelings in our hearts, and stops us from feeling empathy towards the pain and suffering of each other."

Since the Gaza bombardment began, three joint Jewish-Arab gatherings for coexistence and mutual solidarity have been held in Haifa, hosted by the Israeli city’s Ahmadiyya Mahmud Mosque. The Ahmadiyya Muslim Community convened the first meeting on Oct.

November 10, 2023

In both the United States and United Kingdom, progressive politicians have been censured for use of the slogan “Palestine will be free from the river to the sea.” Much media reportage has simply accepted portrayals of the slogan as inherently anti-Semitic and a call for genocide. Nor, given the Hamas atrocities of Oct. 7 and the wave of anti-Semitic attacks around the world since then, should such concerns be merely dismissed. Indeed, the slogan does inherently challenge the precepts of Zionism and the moribund dogma of a two-state solution. In Episode 199 of the CounterVortex podcastBill Weinberg urges activists to articulate a vision of a single secular state with equal rights for all in historic Palestine. While this may seem utopian, clarity on this question will make us more tactically effective in advancing the urgent immediate demand: a ceasefire in Gaza. Listen on SoundCloud or via Patreon.

In both the United States and United Kingdom, progressive politicians have been 

November 1, 2023

As Israel now openly approaches a genocidal threshold in Gaza, it is clear that the hostages held by Hamas have been sacrificed to the end of collective vengeance on the Palestinian people. In Episode 198 of the CounterVortex podcastBill Weinberg echoes urgent demands for a ceasefire, and also notes the "all-for-all" solution now being advanced by the families of the hostages—all Israelis held by Hamas for all Palestinians held by Israel, many of whom have been detained for years without charge. First put forth by Mustafa Barghouti of the secular-left Palestinian National Initiative, this proposal holds hope for a step back from the brink, recognizing the humanity of both "sides." Listen on SoundCloud or via Patreon.

As Israel now openly approaches a genocidal threshold in Gaza, it is clear that the hostages held by Hamas have been 

August 30, 2023

The Supreme Court of the Netherlands affirmed that Palestinians are precluded from bringing legal action against Israeli military officers for their involvement in a deadly air-strike on the Gaza Strip in 2014. The high court upheld the decisions of lower court judges, ruling that former Israeli chief of staff Benny Gantz and former Israeli Air Force commander Amir Eshel are shielded from prosecution due to their immunity status. The court ruled that this places them above legal reproach, regardless of the seriousness or nature of the alleged actions. The case was initiated by Gaza resident Ismail Ziada, who lost his mother, three brothers, a sister-in-law and a nephew in the July 2014 air-strike. In his suit, Ziada sought compensation under the doctrine of universal jurisdiction, which permits the pursuit of legal action for grave crimes committed in other countries.

The Supreme Court of the Netherlands affirmed on Aug. 25 that Palestinians are precluded from bringing legal action against Israeli military officers for their involvement in a deadly air-strike on the Gaza Strip in 2014.