Take down that wall in East Jerusalem

Palestinian teenagers work at a carwash in the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Wadi al-Joz, Nov 17, 2017. (photo: Ammar Awad / Reuters)

The municipality of Jerusalem is considering changing the city’s boundaries to exclude Palestinian refugee camps.

By Moshe Arens | Haaretz | Feb 19, 2018

[Jerusalem officials] are concerned that the influx of Palestinians . . . has substantially changed the demographic balance between Jews and Palestinians in Jerusalem. Some demographic projections indicate that in time Palestinians might even constitute a majority in the city.

In one of the impetuous acts he was known for, Prime Minister Ariel Sharon approved the building of a wall — the separation barrier — within the municipal boundaries of Jerusalem, Israel’s capital, separating the Shoafat refugee camp and the Kafr Aqab neighborhood from the rest of Jerusalem. Like the infamous Berlin Wall, it divided one part of the city from the other.

The result causes great inconvenience to the local people, who must go through checkpoints to enter Jerusalem’s other areas. This includes not only those who work in Jerusalem’s other areas but also children attending schools away from where their families reside.

But that wall brought about another regrettable result. Whereas East Jerusalem’s residential areas have suffered criminal neglect for 50 years, with the wall Shoafat and Kafr Aqab have been completely abandoned by the municipality and the police. They in effect have become a no-man’s-land where drug trafficking and other crime flourish, and anarchy prevails. Neither the government nor the municipality seemed to care about the fate that befell the residents, most of whom are by law recognized as permanent residents of Jerusalem and thereby of Israel, and continue to have the option of applying for Israeli citizenship.

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A wall and a war: Two things every fascist regime needs

President Donald Trump stands with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as he arrives at Ben Gurion Airport near Tel Aviv, May 22, 2017, for his first official visit to Israel as president. (photo: Hadas Parush / Flash90)

Both Trump and Netanyahu want to secure their rule by attacking liberal, democratic forces. But in order to do so, they need two things: a wall and the promise of eternal war.

By Alon Mizrahi | +972 Blog | Feb 5, 2018

Physical segregation, which creates psychological separation, allows for the existence of a project of scaremongering and the enlistment of nationalists that feed the second project necessary for any fascist regime: eternal war.

“George Soros is funding the campaign against deporting infiltrators. . . . Obama deported two million infiltrators and they didn’t say anything.”

These remarks were made by Prime Minister Netanyahu during the weekly cabinet meeting on Sunday, according to a report by Channel 10. The prime minister’s choice of words is confusing, perhaps deliberately: is he referring to deporting foreigners in Israel or the U.S.? If it is the former, why bother mentioning Obama? And if he’s speaking about America, why is he calling Dreamers, as they are known there, “infiltrators?”

The confusion is deliberate. The actions and goals of the Trump administration are identical to those of Netanyahu. Both leaders try to sell the idea that the world is a jungle, the notion of a dichotomous division between the good guys and the bad guys, and the image of “us” as “good” — as god-like. In both camps, the Bible, money, and advanced technology are viewed as both proof of and ethno-cultural justification for moral, genetic, eternal supremacy.

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Banksy’s Bethlehem Hotel with the “Worst View in the World”

An Israeli watchtower seen from one of the rooms of the Walled Off Hotel in the West Bank city of Bethlehem. (photo: Dusan Vranic / Associated Press)

Welcome to the “Walled Off Hotel,” the hotel with “worst view in the world.” Please be mindful of the million-dollar art on the walls.

By Russell Goldman / The New York Times
March 3, 2017

The elusive British street artist Banksy has decorated the interiors of the Walled Off Hotel, a nine-room guesthouse in the West Bank city of Bethlehem whose windows overlook the barrier that separates the territory from Israel.

Among the rooms decorated by the artist, who has earned a following for tagging walls around the world with witty illustrations and dark political commentaries, is the “Banksy Room.”

In the room, a mural on the wall above a king-size bed depicts a Palestinian and an Israeli locked in combat — only they are having a pillow fight.

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