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a different side of Israel

Tag: Fox News

The Beat Goes On

And the beat goes on. According to Human Rights Watch, Palestinian journalists are regularly “abused with impunity” (Reuters) by both the security services of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas in the West Bank and his Islamist rivals Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

A Palestinian man sells newspapers in front of his shop in Gaza StripThe 35-page report cited reporters’ charges of arbitrary arrests, beatings and equipment seizures by government enforcers.

Ahh, yes, the Palestinians, the human rights victims of Israel’s abuse, poised for new statehood. New reforms by the International Monetary Fund allow the Palestinian Authority to reduce its dependence on foreign aid for its regular budget, from $1.8 billion in 2008 to $1.2 billion in 2010, and now, less than $1b for 2011.

Fatah in the West Bank, the governing part of the Palestinian Authority denies the accusations of abusing journalists.

Meanwhile, Fox News correspondent, Jeniffer Griffin and her husband, Greg Myre have a new book called, “This Burning Land: Lessons from the Front Lines of the Transformed Israeli-Palestinian Conflict.” In the book, Griffin talks about when her colleague, Steve Centanni of Fox News and Olaf Wiig a cameraman from New Zealand, were kidnapped on August 14, 2006 by Palestinian gunmen in Gaza City by the Holy Jihad Brigades.

In another story, al-Arabiya claims 1 of 2 people killed in a strike in Sudan was senior Hamas military commander; the Sudanese FM says the fatal hit was “absolutely an Israeli attack” and meant to keep Sudan on the U.S. list of terrorism sponsors, rockets were fired at Israel from Gaza, provoking the attack. Also, Sudanese and Iranian weapons were seized en route to Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

Coping with the Americobession

AmericobsessionIt seems that American pop-culture and the English language have together saturated what could have been a thriving Israeli culture of sophisticated art, film, literature, and music. Just flip through the channels: Top Model, Top Israeli Model, American Idol, Israeli Idol, Who Wants to be a Millionaire, Survivor, Israeli Millionaire, Martha Stewart, Oprah, Dr. Phil. You’ll find television commercials for Israeli products that are entirely in English; you’ll even find plasticized American traditions such as the classic lemonade stand scenario reenacted for commercial purposes in the same nostalgic fashion that’s been done before—white picket fence and all.

Then turn that tuning dial: Britney, Ricky Martin, Rihanna, Jessica Simpson.

And then transliterate from Hebrew the words on any one of those street billboards: HOT, Orange, Super Pharm, New Pharm, Mega, Super Sell, BIG, SMILE.

And lest we forget the vulgar expressions that come out of endless attempts to capture American pop-culture through misinformed translations on clothing: the tagline “Pussy King” on the face of a so-called Burger King T-shirt (usually worn by an Israeli guy showing off the two months he spent driving an ice-cream truck in New Jersey); or a perfectly classy looking woman sporting the slogan “Kiss It” across the back pockets of her 1,000NIS ($250) pair of jeans.

Any efforts—if they ever existed—to halt American globalization in Israel have capsized, making way for newer and more counterfeit ways to promote all of the products, sights, and sounds that are already themselves carbon copies of what was once considered quality in American culture. A double-fallacy, and an especially unfortunate scenario for those of us Americans who have seen it all before.

As to why this has happened, it seems like an old topic already—American political support of Israel leads to financial support, which logically leads to a dribbling in of McFlurries, Coca Cola, Pink and Ashley Simpson. But in my three years here I have noticed a frightening upsurge in what I’ll call the “Americobsession” that draws me to conclude that so much of the flashy crap I was hoping to escape from when I left America, is now on the prowl to suck me right back in. I once figuratively spat at the windows of WalMart and gave my dollars to Nader. And now I seek news updates from the FOX network and question Obama’s willingness to use military force. Is it true? Have I become more American since I’ve moved to Israel? Or have I simply become more Israeli by surrendering to American influence?

The four posts that follow will include a few different investigations into the rampant and largely incurable Israeli obsession with all things American. We’ll lightly skim the pages of Freud and talk to some Israelis and Americans on the street in order to find out what exactly it is about all of that junk from the States that makes young Israelis trade in their Arik Einstein for Hootie and the Blowfish, their ‘Operation Grandma’ for ‘Team America’, and their individual tastes for a load of very expensive dribble. Americans have already fallen for it. Must Israelis now shovel the shekels for a cargo full of bad leftovers?

Written by guest writer Alana Sobelman

Live Gaza Feed

The expected attack on the ground is on its way since yesterday evening. I think that many are thinking of the last time we were at war and the uncertainty and mistrust we had in the people leading us. There is a different feeling in Israel today. It’s been a long time coming.. We have had enough of the attacks and the constant pain of watching Israelis living in the south of Israel under a constant barrage of missiles.

I am writing and watching the attacks in real time and its insane. We advanced in technology, medicine and supposedly awareness and we are again dragged into this. The global financial stress is not enough, we need something extra to make things interesting.

I watched “Fair and Balanced Fox News” this morning. It’s amazing to me that a News channel like this can even exist in today’s world. Geraldo Rivera was talking to Hanan Ashrawi and I switched it off. Just hearing the introduction was enough. The world is coming to an end, Iran is threatening to join the war, Hezbollah is preparing to attack from the north and terror is at the door. Balanced my ass. The only thing that station sells is fear and bad energy!!

The people in the middle of all this are the people in the south of Israel and by far worse, the Palestinian families trying to move from the North of the Gaza Strip to the South – just trying to get away from all this and literally running for their life. There are no words to describe the pain they must be going through.

On the other hand, choosing a Terror Organization like Hamas to be your leader is like going on an organized bus ride in the Rockies with a blind bus driver – at some point you are going to hit something.

There is nothing fair about all this. We as a global society are measured by the weakest link and it seems like the more advanced and the further we reach, that weak link keeps getting weaker.

The Media war is on as well and the Arab world is getting behind Gaza in all its might. Understandable. What has been unique is the Israeli side in the media war, Arab speaking Israeli officers and foreign ministry personnel were interviewed, debated and heard on Arab media channels. We are adding here the live Gaza feed from Mako the Channel 2 News channel.

It’s been less then 24 hours and hopefully this will all be over soon. For the sake of everyone involved.

Just don’t listen to Fox..

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