Israeli Apartheid Week 2014

Israeli Apartheid Week this year is February 24 through March 2. IAW is the annual event to educate Americans about the reality of the situation in Israel/Palestine. Some events are planned across the state include film showings and panel discussions. Since the week overlaps with the end of African American History Month, there are also events planned to celebrate both African Americans and Palestinians.Educating Americans about Israel/Palestine has always been an uphill battle. The facts have been out there, but the media, academia and government have ignored all but a single narrative. Continue Reading

COMMUNITY VOICES | Nelson Mandela, Israel, and me

When I was growing up, my mother instilled a very strong sense in me of right and wrong. The morals she imparted were firmly rooted in the history of the Jewish people and our persecution.  She taught me about the pogroms in Russia,about the harsh working conditions Jews had to endure in sweatshops in America, and the discrimination Jews faced. She also taught me about the involvement of Jews in the civil rights movement and how Michael Schwerner and Andrew Goodman who gave their lives alongside James Chaney. And of course she taught me about the Holocaust, of the heroic ways that Jews fought back, and of the horrific ways in which they died. The lessons I learned were clear.  We must stand up for justice.  Discrimination and prejudice were wrong.   All people were equal and deserve to be treated with dignity and respect. Continue Reading

OUR STORIES | Meet Shahar: Iraqi Polish Israeli Jewish American Immigrant Social Activist Singer Songwriter Lover Human Being

Meet Shahar Eberzon: part musician with an album in the making, part social activist, and part backbone of the growing artist community that is Face Forward  With all these projects, and with legendary Minneapolis stages requesting her presence, she is one to keep an eye on.However, I don’t care about any of that today. Today I have a different agenda.   L: I know you’ve had some immigration issues this year, and this kind of gets more to the root of what we are talking about. When did you come to the United States first?S: I came to the U.S. August 2008, five years ago, but I’ve been away from Israel since I was 17 because I was in Italy for two years.L: What was the strangest thing about coming here?S: Um. The passive aggressiveness. Continue Reading

Palestinian rights supporters call for Soda Stream boycott

A group of protesters will gather outside the Target store in downtown Minneapolis this afternoon to voice their objection to a product called Soda Stream. The device adds carbonation to ordinary tap water. The controversy is related to the complicated situation in Israel and Israel’s settlements on the West Bank of the Jordan River. The protest is organized by two groups – Jewish Voice for Peace and the Coalition for Palestinian Rights. Jordan Ash is a spokesperson for the effort spoke over the phone with The Morning Blend’s Terry Carter who asked Jordan what about his gripe with Soda Stream. Continue Reading

OPINION | Finding peace in Palestine

As a Minnesota native living in the occupied Palestinian territories, I consider myself fortunate: I have easy access to visit some of the most significant historical and religious sites on the planet, and I spend my weekends hiking over ground that offers glorious vistas and exudes a sacred energy unlike any other place I have visited.At the same time, I live in the midst of war. In order to travel more than 10 miles from my home, I must pass through an elaborate system of checkpoints to reach destinations that many of my friends and neighbors cannot visit due to permit restrictions. I have seen Israeli soldiers shooting at Palestinian teenagers throwing stones and ultraconservative settlers roaming the hills with weapons. And I have watched with my family as a rocket fired from Gaza exploded in the sea while we ate our lunch on the beach in Tel Aviv. Each day is a new possibility that I will have to again pack my grab bag with essentials in case of emergency and the need to evacuate.I visited an archaeological museum recently in the Old City of Jerusalem. Continue Reading

Israel-Palestine: Politics for some, personal for me

Celebrations after the election quickly turned into worry and horror in my mind. On November 8, 2012 violence further intensified in Gaza and Israel. Further is key in this sentence because the violence is fairly consistent in this region and it is difficult to place a starting point in the latest escalation of violence. Continue Reading