Top News & Analysis from Israel/Palestine: January 26-February 2, 2024


1. New from FMEP
2. Gaza
3. West Bank
4. Region/Diplomacy
5. US Scene
6. Israeli Scene
7. Long Reads/Perspectives

1. New from FMEP

‘Dehumanization of Palestinians in real time with no condemnation (New Occupied Thoughts podcast) — FMEP Fellow Peter Beinart speaks with Tariq Habash, a Palestinian American who was a political appointee in the Biden Administration’s Department of Education. Habash resigned from his position in early January in opposition to the Biden Administration’s approach to Israel’s war in Gaza. Read Habash’s resignation letter here.

Settlement & Annexation Report: February 2, 2024 (Kristin McCarthy) –1) Israel’s High Planning Council Convenes for First Time in 2024, Promotes Plan for Expanding Givat Ze’ev; 2) Conference Planning for Gaza Resettlement Draws Israeli Ministers 3) Biden Issues Executive Order on Settler Violence; 4) Bonus Reads

FMEP Legislative Round-Up: February 2, 2024 (Lara Friedman) & FMEP Legislative Round-Up: January 26, 2024

2. Gaza

‘No space for everyone’: Rafah overwhelmed with fleeing Gazans (Al Jazeera) — “More than half of Gaza’s population of 2.4 million is in Rafah, on the border with Egypt, according to the United Nations. Those without relatives to host them or the means to rent apartments have found themselves in tents wherever there is space: along streets, in public squares, sports stadiums or parks.” See also Israel’s war on Gaza live: Rafah’s displaced brace for Israeli offensive (Al Jazeera); Israel’s war on Gaza updates: Rafah next target, says Israel (Al Jazeera); UN estimates 17,000 Gaza children left unaccompanied amid Israel’s war (Al Jazeera)

‘We are dying slowly:’ Palestinians are eating grass and drinking polluted water as famine looms across Gaza (CNN) — “As Gaza spirals toward full-scale famine, displaced civilians and health workers told CNN they go hungry so their children can eat what little is available. If Palestinians find water, it is likely undrinkable. When relief trucks trickle into the strip, people clamber over each other to grab aid. Children living on the streets, after being forced from their homes by Israel’s bombardment, cry and fight over stale bread. Others reportedly walk for hours in the cold searching for food, risking exposure to Israeli strikes…Israel’s bombardment and siege since October 7 has drastically diminished vital supplies in Gaza, leaving the entire population of some 2.2 million exposed to high levels of acute food insecurity or worse, according to the Integrated Food Security and Nutrition Phase Classification (IPC), which assesses global food insecurity and malnutrition…UN human rights experts have warned “Israel is destroying Gaza’s food system and using food as a weapon against the Palestinian people.”

Unless Israel changes course, it could be legally culpable for mass starvation (Alex de Waal//Guardian) – “Gaza is experiencing mass starvation like no other in recent history. Before the outbreak of fighting in October, food security in Gaza was precarious, but very few children – less than 1% – suffered severe acute malnutrition, the most dangerous kind. Today, almost all Gazans, of any age, anywhere in the territory, are at risk…The most extreme historical cases – such as Stalin’s Holodomor in Ukraine in the 1930s and the Nazi “hunger plan” on the eastern front during the second world war – were genocidal famines at immense scale. Gaza doesn’t approach these, but Israel will need to act decisively if it is to escape the charge of having used hunger to exterminate the Palestinians. Starvation is a massacre in slow motion. And unlike shooting or bombing, the dying continues for weeks even if killing is halted…For the survival of the people of Gaza today, it doesn’t matter whether Israel intends genocide or not. Unless Israel follows the famine relief committee recommendations, it will knowingly cause mass death by hunger and disease. That’s a starvation crime. And if the US and UK fail to use every possible lever to stop the catastrophe, they will be complicit.” See also ‘My children are crying from hunger. This is a war of starvation’ (Ruwaida Kamal Amer//+972)

UNRWA could run out of Gaza funding in a month as many in West cut aid (Al Monitor) – “The United Nations Palestinian Refugee and Works Agency warned on Monday that it won’t be able to continue its operations in Gaza after the end of February if the funding that was cut by many countries last week does not resume. The suspensions of funding to the UN refugee agency in the Gaza Strip followed reports that 12 of its employees took part in Hamas’ Oct. 7 assault on southern Israel, during which militants killed some 1,200 people and took over 240 others hostage. UNRWA, which employs thousands in the Strip, sacked the 12 employees and has started an investigation into the allegations. But the agency is warning of a dire situation if the funding is not restored…UNRWA chief Philippe Lazzarini described the allegations as “shocking” and said those involved were immediately fired. He added in a Friday statement that an investigation has been opened “in order to establish the truth without delay.”’ See also Israeli intelligence prompted U.S. to quickly cut Gaza aid funding (WaPo); Israeli document alleges U.N. workers took part in Oct. 7 Hamas attack (WaPo); ‘It’s immoral’: UN special rapporteur on UNRWA funding cuts (Al Jazeera//Marc Lamont Hill speaks to UN Special Rapporteur, Francesca Albanese); What is UNRWA and why is it important for Palestinians? (Al Jazeera); Palestinian Organizations Warn Against Potential Complicity in Genocide Due to UNRWA Funding Cut Impacting Humanitarian Aid to Gaza (Al Haz, Al Mezan, & PCHR)

EU split on UNRWA funding: Germany, Italy suspend while others call for audit (Al Monitor); Which countries have cut funding to UNRWA, and why? (Al Jazeera)

Read the ICJ’s interim ruling against Israel in South Africa’s Gaza genocide case (Middle East Eye) – “The International Court of Justice (ICJ) has delivered a interim ruling calling on Israel to refrain from impeding the delivery of aid into Gaza and improve the humanitarian situation. It also ordered Israel to take all measures within its power to prevent acts of genocide in the besieged enclave and to punish incitement to genocide. However, it did not order Israel to halt military operations in Gaza, one of South Africa’s key demands in the case it brought to The Hague earlier this month. Read the court’s full interim ruling here.”

ICJ lands stunning blow on Israel over Gaza genocide charge (Trita Parsi//Responsible Statecraft) – “This is a devastating blow to Israel’s global standing. To put it in context, Israel has worked ferociously for the last two decades to defeat the BDS movement — Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions — not because it will have a significant economic impact on Israel, but because of how it could delegitimize Israel internationally. However, the ruling of the ICJ that Israel is plausibly engaged in genocide is far more devastating to Israel’s legitimacy than anything BDS could have achieved. Just as much as Israel’s political system has been increasinglyand publiclyassociated with apartheid in the past few years, Israel will now be similarly associated with the charge of genocide. As a result, those countries that have supported Israel and its military campaign in Gaza, such as the U.S. under President Biden, will be associated with that charge, too. The implications for the United States are significant.” See also Charging Israel with Genocide (Jewish Currents’ On the Nose podcast: Mari Cohen speaks to human rights attorney and scholar Noura Erakat, legal scholar Darryl Li, and journalist Tony Karon); Opinion: Why International Court of Justice ruling against Israel’s war in Gaza is a game-changer (Raz Segal//LA Times)

War on Gaza: Dozens of Palestinians found dead at elementary school in zip-tied body bags (Middle East Eye) – “Dozens of Palestinians were found dead at a school in the northern Gaza Strip in black body bags tied with plastic cables bearing Hebrew writing. The bodies of 50 Palestinians were discovered at the grounds of the Khalifa bin Zayed elementary school in Beit Lahia on Tuesday after Israeli forces withdrew from the area, local residents told Middle East Eye. The bodies were discovered under a mound of rubble at the school with videos uploaded on social media sites showing several of the body bags tied with white plastic zip ties, normally used for tying cables together. According to eyewitnesses assisting in identifying the deceased, Israeli forces reportedly executed the Palestinians nearly two months ago on a road near the school. The school had served as a shelter for thousands of displaced Palestinians before it was bombed and besieged by Israeli forces in early December.”

“Even as We Are Trying to Help, We Are Being Attacked” (Jameel, Juliette Touma, and Mohammed Al Khatib) – “Jewish Currents spoke to three humanitarian workers trying to provide aid under apocalyptic conditions. They described the unprecedented obstacles to distributing aid, the impact of the killing of aid workers on an already dire crisis, and the terrifying precedent that Israel’s actions are setting for the future of aid work in conflict zones.” See also A Pediatrician’s Two Weeks Inside a Hospital in Gaza (Isaac Chotiner//New Yorker interview with Dr. Seema Jilani of the International Rescue Committee); A 6-year-old in Gaza City was calling to be rescued. Did anyone find her? (WaPo)

Stripped, Beaten or Vanished: Israel’s Treatment of Gaza Detainees Raises Alarm (NYT) – “Palestinian detainees from Gaza have been stripped, beaten, interrogated and held incommunicado over the past three months, according to accounts by nearly a dozen of the detainees or their relatives interviewed by The New York Times. Organizations representing Palestinian prisoners and detainees gave similar accounts in a report, accusing Israel of both indiscriminate detention of civilians and demeaning treatment of detainees. Israeli forces who invaded Gaza after the Oct. 7 Hamas-led attack have detained men, women and children by the thousands…The United Nations human rights office said last week that Israel’s treatment of Gazan detainees might amount to torture. It estimated that thousands had been detained and held in “horrific” conditions before being released, sometimes with no clothes on, only diapers…A spokesman for the International Committee of the Red Cross, Hisham Mhanna, said his organization received daily reports from families in Gaza about detained family members. The organization is working on some 4,000 cases of Palestinians from Gaza who had vanished, nearly half believed to be detained by the Israeli military, he said.”

Israeli Army Occupies Gaza Homes – Then Burns Them Down (Haaretz) — “Israeli soldiers have begun in recent weeks to set fire to homes in the Gaza Strip, following direct orders from their commanders, without the necessary legal permission to do so, according to information obtained by Haaretz. Soldiers have destroyed several hundred buildings using this method over the past month…Originally reserved only for specific cases, the practice has become more and more commonplace as the war waged on, Haaretz’s investigation revealed.” See also How war destroyed Gaza’s neighbourhoods – visual investigation (The Guardian); Israel’s Controlled Demolitions Are Razing Neighborhoods in Gaza (NYT); Domicide: The Mass Destruction of Homes Should Be a Crime Against Humanity (Balakrishnan Rajagopal, U.N. special rapporteur on the right to adequate housing, and Yaqeen Baker, whose home was destroyed in the war in Gaza//NYT); Israel destroys hundreds of educational institutions in Gaza since the war started (NPR); How Israeli soldiers are engaged in widespread looting in Gaza (New Arab)

3. West Bank

Israeli forces dressed as medics raid hospital in Jenin, killing three (Middle East Eye) — Israeli commandos disguised as medics, patients and other Palestinian civilians raided a hospital in the occupied West Bank city of Jenin on Tuesday morning, in footage widely shared online…The raid left parts of the hospital destroyed, with beds upturned and blood stains covering the floor and equipment.” See also ‘We Are Not Very Far From an Explosion’ (Roger Cohen//NYT)

The assassinations at Jenin hospital should not surprise anyone (Yara Hawari//Al Jazeera)– “This week, a video circulated on social media showing a dozen Israeli special forces soldiers disguised as Palestinian civilians entering Ibn Sina Hospital in the West Bank city of Jenin, where they proceeded to assassinate three Palestinian men – two of whom were brothers. During the operation, they also attacked and terrorised hospital staff and other patients…Witnesses insist there were no attempts to arrest the men and instead they were shot as they slept…Under international law, hospitals and medical facilities are considered protected spaces, and attacking them is considered a war crime. But this doesn’t matter much to the Israeli regime, which has enjoyed decades of impunity for such crimes. It also doesn’t seem to matter much to many mainstream media spaces, which seldom mention that these attacks are war crimes. Indeed their reporting on the Jenin hospital raid fails to mention this and fails to mention the context of systematic Israeli attacks on Palestinian healthcare.” 

Biden’s Executive Order on Violent Israeli Settlers Is a Game-changer (Ben Samuels//Haaretz) – “The Biden administration’s decision to sanction four West Bank settlers implicated in violence against Palestinians is a dramatic step, an unprecedented case of the U.S. government punitively targeting Israelis. Shock at the decision may obscure just how much of a game-changer President Joe Biden’s executive order could eventually be. It has the potential to irreversibly impact Israel’s settlement enterprise and its access to U.S. financial institutions, its fundraising, relations between the two countries, and more. Biden has deemed the “intolerable levels” of violence in the West Bank a national emergency, establishing a new sanctions regime and formally defining extremist settlers as directly undermining stated U.S. policy goals and initiatives…The statement was a rare admission by the U.S. government – let alone the president himself – that Israeli actions are provoking tensions external to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict…Targets of the order include but are not limited to, anyone who has perpetrated or directed acts of violence against Palestinian civilians, has used intimidation tactics to displace Palestinians, or has destroyed or seized Palestinian property.” See also With unprecedented executive order, US sanctions settlers behind ‘intolerable’ violence (Times of Israel); These Are the Four Israeli Settlers Targeted by Biden’s First Round of Sanctions (Haaretz)

4. Region/Diplomacy

U.S. retaliates after deadly attack on Jordan base (WaPo) – “U.S. forces launched a broad attack against Iran’s military and affiliated militias in Iraq and Syria on Friday, delivering a blow to armed groups that Washington has blamed for killing American troops in Jordan and a toxic surge of violence across the Middle East. U.S. Central Command said that American forces, using aircraft including long-range bombers flown from the United States, hit more than 85 targets affiliated with Iran’s powerful Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps’ (IRGC) Quds Force and local militias it supports, including command centers, intelligence sites and drone storage sites. The operation appeared to mark the opening of what officials have said would be a multiday campaign aimed at various targets close to Iran, which the Biden administration has blamed for a spiraling of militant violence since the start of Israel’s war in the Gaza Strip, including a drone attack Sunday that killed three U.S. service members and injured dozens more at a remote outpost in Jordan.” See also U.S. troops killed, wounded in Jordan attack blamed on Iranian proxies (WaPo) 

Hamas seems to rule out key points of truce offer, wants release of Marwan Barghouti (Times of Israel) – “Hamas officials said Friday that the group is studying a proposed ceasefire deal that would include prolonged pauses in fighting in Gaza and swaps of Israeli hostages for Palestinian prisoners, but at the same time appeared to rule out some of its key components.”

5. US Scene

Judge Rejects US Complicity Case But Urges Biden to Examine ‘Unflagging’ Support for Israel (Common Dreams) — “A federal judge in Oakland, California dismissed a lawsuit Wednesday that aimed to stop the U.S. from aiding Israel’s catastrophic assault on the Gaza Strip—but also offered sharp criticism of the Biden administration’s unwavering support for the war. U.S. Judge Jeffrey White of the Northern District of California ruled that the suit brought by Palestinian rights organizations and individuals in both the U.S. and Gaza falls “outside the court’s limited jurisdiction” and must be rejected on technical grounds. White described the case as a rare instance “in which the preferred outcome is inaccessible to the court,” but notably pointed to the International Court of Justice’s finding that South Africa’s genocide case against Israel is “plausible” and suggested the U.S. government should reconsider its role in supporting the assault on Gaza.” See also “I have lost everything”: In Federal Court, Palestinians Accuse Biden of Complicity in Genocide (Intercept); U.S. Court Concludes Israel’s Assault on Gaza Is Plausible Case of Genocide (Center for Constitutional Rights)

Black Pastors Pressure Biden to Call for a Cease-Fire in Gaza (NYT) – “As the Israel-Hamas war enters its fourth month, a coalition of Black faith leaders is pressuring the Biden administration to push for a cease-fire — a campaign spurred in part by their parishioners, who are increasingly distressed by the suffering of Palestinians and critical of the president’s response to it. More than 1,000 Black pastors representing hundreds of thousands of congregants nationwide have issued the demand. In sit-down meetings with White House officials, and through open letters and advertisements, ministers have made a moral case for President Biden and his administration to press Israel to stop its offensive operations in Gaza, which have killed thousands of civilians. They are also calling for the release of hostages held by Hamas and an end to Israel’s occupation of the West Bank. The effort at persuasion also carries a political warning, detailed in interviews with a dozen Black faith leaders and their allies. Many of their parishioners, these pastors said, are so dismayed by the president’s posture toward the war that their support for his re-election bid could be imperiled.” See also How Senate Democrats Are Divided on Israel (Isaac Chotiner//New Yorker interviews Sen. Jeff Merkley)

‘War criminal’: Arab Americans rebuff Biden campaign outreach over Gaza (Al Jazeera) – “Many elected Arab-American officials, including municipal leaders and state legislators, declined to meet with Julie Chavez Rodriguez, arguing that as long as there are mass killings in Gaza, they will not discuss the elections. “It’s unfathomable at this point in time that we’re trying to talk about electoral politics with a genocide unfolding,” said Abdullah Hammoud, the mayor of Dearborn, a Detroit suburb.”

Biden’s New Normal Amid the Israel-Hamas War: Pro-Palestinian Hecklers (Haaretz) – “As Biden’s re-election campaign kicks into new gear, his support for Israel’s war in Gaza has spurred organized groups of pro-Palestinian protestors to action – in Virginia, South Carolina, Illinois, Washington, Minnesota and the battleground state of Michigan, where the president is bleeding Democratic support”

Chicago Passes Gaza Cease-Fire Resolution in Israel-Hamas War (NYT) – “The Chicago City Council voted on Wednesday to approve a resolution calling for an immediate cease-fire in the war between Israel and Hamas, making it the largest city in the United States to do so…Around 70 cities in the country, including San Francisco, Seattle and Detroit, have passed resolutions on the war, with at least 47 of those calling for an immediate cease-fire, according to Reuters.”

Over 800 Officials in U.S. and Europe Sign Letter Protesting Israel Policies (NYT) – “More than 800 officials in the United States, the United Kingdom and the European Union released a public letter of dissent on Friday against their governments’ support of Israel in its war in Gaza. The letter is the first instance of officials in allied nations across the Atlantic coming together to openly criticize their governments over the war, say current and former officials who are organizing or supporting the effort…“Our governments’ current policies weaken their moral standing and undermine their ability to stand up for freedom, justice and human rights globally,” the letter says, according to a copy obtained Thursday by The New York Times. It adds that “there is a plausible risk that our governments’ policies are contributing to grave violations of international humanitarian law, war crimes and even ethnic cleansing or genocide.”’ See also USAID’s Samantha Power, genocide scholar, confronted by staff on Gaza (WaPo)

More than one-third of Americans believe Israel is committing genocide, poll shows (Guardian) – “According to the Economist/YouGov poll, roughly equal numbers of adults believe Israel’s military campaign against Palestinians, which is estimated to have killed more than 25,000 people since 7 October, amounts to genocide: 35% say it is, 36% say it isn’t, with 29% undecided. Among younger Americans, and along political lines, divisions are more prominent. Almost half of those surveyed aged 18-29, 49%, say Israel is committing genocide, with 24% disagreeing and 27% uncertain. The figures are broadly similar for registered Democrats, who believe 49%-21% in the genocide characterization, while 30% are undecided. Republicans are far more supportive of Israel’s actions, with 57% of respondents saying there is no genocide, only 18% saying there is, and exactly one-quarter unsure.”

Pelosi Wants F.B.I. to Investigate Pro-Palestinian Protesters (NYT) – “Representative Nancy Pelosi, Democrat of California and the former House speaker, on Sunday called for the F.B.I. to investigate protesters demanding a cease-fire in the Israel-Hamas conflict, suggesting without evidence that some activists may have ties to Russia and President Vladimir V. Putin. “For them to call for a cease-fire is Mr. Putin’s message,” Ms. Pelosi said during an interview on CNN’s “State of the Union.” “Make no mistake, this is directly connected to what he would like to see. Same thing with Ukraine. It’s about Putin’s message. I think some of these protesters are spontaneous and organic and sincere. Some, I think, are connected to Russia.” When pressed on whether she believed some of the demonstrators were “Russian plants,” Ms. Pelosi said: “Seeds or plants. I think some financing should be investigated. And I want to ask the F.B.I. to investigate that.””

6. Israeli Scene

Netanyahu Ministers Join Thousands of Israelis in ‘Resettle Gaza’ Conference Calling for Palestinians’ Transfer (Haaretz) – “Thousands of participants gathered in Jerusalem Sunday for a far-right conference calling for the re-settlement of the Gaza Strip and the transfer of the Palestinian population living there. Entitled “Conference for the Victory of Israel – Settlement Brings Security: Returning to the Gaza Strip and Northern Samaria,” the conference included speeches from many public figures, including Knesset members and ministers from the current coalition government, as well as rabbis, settlement activists, families of soldiers currently fighting in Gaza, and heads of southern councils…Far-right National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir of the Otzma Yehudit party and Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich of the Religious Zionist party attended the event, featuring as key speakers.” See also Turning Zeitoun into Shivat Zion: Israeli summit envisions Gaza resettlement (Oren Ziv//+972)

Israeli police repressing anti-war protests with ‘iron fist,’ say activists (Oren Ziv//+972) – “Since October 7, Israel’s police have been implementing a consistent policy of preventing or limiting any protest against the war — in contrast to protests in solidarity with the hostages and their families, which have been permitted in certain areas. This policy is still in effect despite Israel’s Supreme Court issuing an interim injunction earlier this month prohibiting National Security Minister Itamar Ben Gvir from interfering with the policing of demonstrations; in large part, police appear nonetheless to be enforcing the minister’s desired crackdown on freedom of expression during the war. Anti-war activists across the country — Palestinian citizens as well as Jews — who were interviewed for this article all mentioned one word: “fear.” Even veteran political activists say they have never been so fearful of protesting. They are afraid of being arrested, which for Palestinian citizens could spell months in prison. More than ever, they said, it is dangerous to show solidarity with the people of Gaza, and they feel that politicians’ belligerent rhetoric is directly impacting police behavior.”

A New Low: The Israelis Advocating to Starve the People of Gaza (Dahlia Scheindlin//Haaretz) – “The humanitarian catastrophe of nearly 2 million displaced Palestinians was at the heart of the ICJ’s ruling, wrote the legal scholar Aeyal Gross. Yet many Israelis are fuming at the order for Israel to provide humanitarian aid to Gaza’s civilians (even as Israel is relieved the world court didn’t order a cease-fire). According to Agam Institute surveys, nearly 60 percent of Israeli Jews oppose humanitarian aid – a stable figure over time. Let me break with analytic artifice: Opposing water, medicine and supplies to the most wretched people on Earth seems grotesque, a new low for Israel or for anyone. Why would anyone do it?” See also How Israeli Media Became a Wartime Government Propaganda Arm (Haaretz); War on Gaza: Israeli protesters block aid trucks from entering the strip (Middle East Eye)

7.  Long Reads/Perspectives

No one is listening to Gaza’s pleas — including our leaders (+972//a Gaza-based Palestinian journalist, known to +972 Magazine, who requested anonymity for themselves and their interviewees out of concern for their safety) – “We in Gaza are literally dying every day, every minute, every second. Our lives have been turned upside down since October 7, and now only revolve around our most basic needs…I do not know anymore, or perhaps I cannot know, who is to blame for our suffering. Certainly, the main cause is the Israeli government. But we are beginning to wonder: Has the world agreed with Israel to eliminate us? Is Hamas cooperating with Israel? Where is the Palestinian Authority?…What Israel has done to Gaza is a violent earthquake, an earthquake that is deliberately destroying our homes and neighborhoods. But the citizens of Gaza are asking for a government that at least remains in touch with its people, a government that negotiates with Israel to protect us, not just themselves.”

Gaza Is a Crime Scene (Lisa Hajjar//MERIP) – “The South African application to the ICJ is an 84-page masterclass for understanding the Genocide Convention and its applicability to what Israel is doing in Gaza. The document contains abundant details of the cumulatively genocidal consequences of Israel’s military actions since October 7 to kill and make life impossible. It situates these charges in the “broader context of Israel’s conduct towards Palestinians during its 75-year-long apartheid, its 56-year-long belligerent occupation of Palestinian territory and its 16-year-long blockade of Gaza.”…South Africa’s application to the ICJ on behalf of stateless Palestinians—like the war on Gaza that it addresses—is taking political shape as an epic contestation between the Global South and the Global North over the efficacy of international law to protect formerly and currently colonized peoples. The rights of Palestinians are once again a global litmus test.”

The Subversive Act of Photographing Palestinian Life (Adam Rouhana//NYT) – “Long before Oct. 7, Palestinian photographers like me have been building a contemporary Palestinian visual language, inscribed with an ethic of self-determination. If photographs tell the stories of people, our images tell the story of our people. Some have argued that Zionism is built on the myth that Palestine was a land without a people for a people without a land. My photography subverts this myth: Palestine is our homeland. Photographing Palestinian life stands against forces of erasure. Images like these can help reorient us toward a just future — a Palestine where we can all live together with equality and freedom. A home where I can one day sit with my granddaughter. A place where she has a past and a future.”

A Historic Junction: The Israeli left after October 7. (Sally Abed, Yael Berda, Eli Cook and Joshua Leifer//Dissent) – Berda: “For decades, Israel has been going through a very methodological process of engineering public perception of Palestinians as subhumans. While you can’t completely escape the reality of what’s happening in Gaza because of social media, the Israeli public is barely exposed to the atrocities being committed. On Channel 14 [a rough equivalent to Fox News], which is now the second-most watched channel, you see counters of how many “terrorists” have been killed, and that includes all the casualties—all the children and all the women. As leftists, we are fighting this big machine. It’s not even about fake news, but about how the public perceives this whole thing, which is so detached from the reality for Palestinians, and so detached from our interests as an Israeli public. It’s going to take a lot of work to shift this paradigm.”’