Nov 2018 Israel/Palestine Impact Trip: Informational meeting (Next Saturday)

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Do you want to better understand the Israeli-Palestinian conflict? Do you wonder if there’s a role for Christians to play in this long-running and often violent dispute?

Date: Saturday, Feb 24, 2018
Time: 9:30 – 11:00 am
Location: Bellevue Presbyterian Church, Room S-140
1717 Bellevue Way NE
Bellevue, WA  98004
Information: More information here →
Event Details

Join us to hear about the Bellevue Presbyterian Church trip to Israel this November that explores the Biblical themes of reconciliation and social justice. Much of our time will be spent with Israeli and Palestinian guides and guests. We’ll listen to them share their stories with the hope we can glimpse what stands in the way of peace and reconciliation to the Holy Land. We will also visit the holy sites of Jerusalem and the places where Jesus spent time around Galilee.

Through a diverse array of tour guides and speakers — Israeli and Palestinian, Christian, Jewish, and Muslim, political, religious and tribal leaders, policymakers, peace builders, grassroots activists, artists, journalists, musicians, writers, and many more — this trip provides rare cultural immersion for travelers of all backgrounds and perspectives.

More information here →

Israel’s decision to put Ahed on trial could backfire

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Ahed Tamimi at Ofer Military Prison. (photo: Jerusalem Online)

Arrested in December for slapping an Israeli soldier who had entered her yard, 17-year-old Ahed Tamimi was later arrested in the middle of the night, is currently being held in a military prison, and is being tried in a closed military courtroom.

By Loveday Morris | The Washington Post | Feb 13, 2018


“The Israeli military supposes by arresting Ahed Tamimi they can silence their activism. But although painful, it’s definitely put a spotlight on Palestinian children in detention.”
— Fadi Quran, senior campaigner with the activist group Avaaz


Slouching in her chair and mouthing messages to her friends and family from under a cascade of strawberry-blond curls, Ahed Tamimi in many ways appears to be an everyday teenager.

But the tussle of television cameras and photographers that crowded in for a shot of her in the dock of a small Israeli military court in Ofer for a bail hearing last month was a reminder that she is far from it.

Ahed, who recently turned 17, was arrested after a video of her slapping and kicking two Israeli soldiers who had entered her front yard went viral last year. On Tuesday, after nearly two months in detention, she went on trial on 12 charges, including assault of a soldier and incitement.

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Nov 2018 Israel/Palestine Impact Trip: Informational meeting

3a2a39c35aec4c088559c20573ac3787_18

Do you want to better understand the Israeli-Palestinian conflict? Do you wonder if there’s a role for Christians to play in this long-running and often violent dispute?

Date: Saturday, Feb 24, 2018
Time: 9:30 – 11:00 am
Location: Bellevue Presbyterian Church, Room S-140
1717 Bellevue Way NE
Bellevue, WA  98004
Information: More information here →
Event Details

Join us to hear about the Bellevue Presbyterian Church trip to Israel this November that explores the Biblical themes of reconciliation and social justice. Much of our time will be spent with Israeli and Palestinian guides and guests. We’ll listen to them share their stories with the hope we can glimpse what stands in the way of peace and reconciliation to the Holy Land. We will also visit the holy sites of Jerusalem and the places where Jesus spent time around Galilee.

Through a diverse array of tour guides and speakers — Israeli and Palestinian, Christian, Jewish, and Muslim, political, religious and tribal leaders, policymakers, peace builders, grassroots activists, artists, journalists, musicians, writers, and many more — this trip provides rare cultural immersion for travelers of all backgrounds and perspectives.

More information here →

“It’s What We Do: A Play About the Occupation”

The play, adapted from the testimony of Israeli soldiers, was recently produced in Washington, DC.

By Pam Bailey | Mondoweiss | Feb 6, 2018


This oppression is destructive for everyone: Palestinian civilians obviously suffer daily, and the Israeli soldiers — who are told “your mission is to disrupt lives” — are forced to stop thinking and do what they are ordered to do, even when the must carry out actions that are inhumane. This is called “mind occupation,” and I’m glad that some soldiers have managed to free their minds and break the silence.


This video is a production called “It’s What We Do: A Play About the Occupation,” produced and directed by Pam Nice, a member of the Washington, DC, chapter of Jewish Voice for Peace.

Although it is a drama, the dialogue of the soldiers is adapted from the actual testimonies of Israeli soldiers from Breaking the Silence, whose vivid memories continue to haunt them. The target audience is Jewish viewers. But several We Are Not Numbers writers, who have been “targets” of Israeli soldiers, watched the video, curious to see how far the the soldiers were willing to go in their confessions. It was difficult for many of them to watch, and their reactions varied. But they all agreed the video should be required viewing for people everywhere.

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Confederation: The one possible Israel-Palestine solution

TO GO WITH AFP STORY BY CHARLES LEVINSON

Palestinian boys playing soccer against the backdrop of the Israeli separation barrier that bisects their school playground in East Jerusalem, 2006. (photo: AWAD / AFP / Getty Images)

Talk of confederation sounds wistful in the current environment, but any talk of peace does. What’s really naïve is to suppose that only bad faith or ideological fanaticism has caused the two-state solution to fall into disrepute.

By Bernard Avishai | The New York Review of Books | Feb 2, 2018


The justification for the two-state solution is rooted, after all, in two persistent truths: first, that two separate national communities, each with a different language, historical grievance, sense of identity in the wider world, and dominant religious culture, have been squeezed by tragic events into a single small space. . . . Second, that a majority on each side prefers some form of compromise to a fight to the finish. . . . [But] moderate majorities “increasingly doubt its viability,” largely because they have grown jaded regarding the intentions of the other side, not because, in principle, they refuse the compromises two states would entail.


“The two-state solution is over,” Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat told reporters, responding to Donald Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. “Now is the time to transform the struggle for one state with equal rights for everyone living in historic Palestine, from the river to the sea.” As The New York Times subsequently reported, Erekat is hardly alone. The “over”-ness of “two states” — albeit with radical disagreements about the character of a hypothetical single state — has been claimed by ideological zealots, severe liberals, and exasperated peacemakers alike.

On the Palestinian side, one hears about the almost 700,000 Israeli settlers’ making annexation an established fact; on the Israeli side, about preventing recalcitrant Palestinian terrorists from firing missiles at Ben-Gurion Airport. For those of us living in Jerusalem, just speaking of two states, implying two capitals — but also, vaguely, some redivision of the city — invites skeptical, or pitying, stares from most Jews, as well as from Arabs, over a thousand of whom applied for Israeli citizenship in 2016.

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Narendra Modi is visiting the Occupied Territories this week — here’s why Palestinians shouldn’t embrace him

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Modi will visit Ramallah, where there were mass anti-Trump protests after the US recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. (photo: AFP / Getty)

Many will say Modi’s visit to Ramallah is an historic moment, but India buys 41 per cent of total Israeli arms exports.

By Umar Lateef Misgar | The Independent | Feb 7, 2018


India has gradually become Israel’s largest defense customer. According to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI), between 2012 and 2016, India bought 41 per cent of total Israeli arms exports.


In an interview on Voice of Palestine radio station recently, Majid Khalidi, an adviser to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, announced the visit of India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi to the occupied Palestinian territories this weekend. Alongside a tour to Yasser Arafat Museum in Ramallah to honour the late Palestinian leader, the Prime Minister is expected to discuss issues related to information technology, tourism and health during this brief stopover on the broader Middle East tour.

Modi’s upcoming visit to Ramallah, a first for an Indian premier, is being hailed as historic by his Palestinian hosts. However, a closer scrutiny of New Delhi’s ties with Israel along with India’s own record of military control in places like Kashmir reveals an entirely different picture.

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Israel deports 14-year-old girl to Gaza, without telling her parents

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An electric cart provides transportation through the 900-meter caged terminal spanning the restricted access zone at the Erez border crossing between Israel and the Gaza Strip, Jul 2, 2012. (photo: Ryan Rodrick Beiler / Activestills.org)

Ghada had spent her entire life in the West Bank, yet somehow found herself deported to the Gaza Strip after being arrested by Border Police officers.

By Edo Konrad | +972 Magazine | Jan 31, 2018


“It should be noted that the girl and her father are illegal immigrants in Israel, and therefore she was sent to Erez Crossing . . . entered the Gaza Strip.”
— Israel Prison Service statement


Israeli authorities deported a 14-year-old epileptic Palestinian girl from the West Bank to the Gaza Strip earlier this month, without notifying her parents, and despite the fact that she has never lived there a day in her life.

Ghada, who was born in Ramallah where she has lived much of her life, was arrested by Israeli Border Police officers on January 13 for being in Jerusalem without a military permit. She was traveling back to her home in a-Ram, just northeast of Jerusalem where she lives with her mother and siblings, from her aunt’s home in the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Issawiya.

Her father, though originally from the Gaza Strip, currently lives in the West Bank as well, her mother told Israeli human rights group HaMoked, which is representing the family. When Ghada was born, Israeli authorities listed her address as Gaza for an unknown reason.

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