Apartheid Israel closes TV station on Palestinian identity

Israel has ordered a six-month closure of Palestine 48, a new Palestinian television channel funded by the Palestinian Authority and catering to Palestinian citizens of Israel.

“I will not allow for Israel’s sovereignty to be harmed or for the Palestinian Authority to gain a foothold in Israeli territory,” said Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan, who on Thursday signed an order claiming that the channel did not have the authorisation to operate in Israel.

So much for freedom of thought in Israel.

Mirroring the outrage expressed by a number of Palestinian lawmakers in Israel, Palestinian Broadcasting Corporation President Riad al-Hassan said the move against the channel – which is broadcast through the Palestinian company PalSat – was “illegal” and that it would be contested in the supreme court…

Creators say the channel has been no stranger to controversy, even in the choice of its name. Palestine 48 – or P48 – refers to the some 700,000 people who fled or were forcibly evicted from their homes in the context of the 1948 war with Israel, and whose descendants in recent years have balanced their identities as Israeli citizens and Palestinian nationals.

Their stories have begun to shed light on long-suppressed national narratives. P48 director Firas Abdelrahman said he was especially proud of programmes that would have examined the ways families were, and continue to be, shaped by the protracted conflict.

“We have stories which we are just thirsting to tell, and Palestinians are also eager to discover and learn about themselves,” Abdelrahman said…

The director’s own family tree traces back to al-Shajara village. After years wandering the world, Abdelrahman ended up in Ramallah, where he envisioned the P48 channel as a way of strengthening Palestinians’ connections with their homeland. The Palestinian Authority funds the channel, though producers say it maintains political independence…

Israel is home to more than 1.5 million Palestinians, most of whom speak Hebrew and have citizenship, but who also say they are treated as second-class citizens and given inferior access to education, healthcare and job opportunities compared to their Jewish neighbours.

RTFA. Lots more information about all the processes involved.

The battle against apartheid, the fight against an imperial nation with allies that historically ranged from Boer South Africa to the United States, has more similarities than contextual differences with the American civil rights movement. Throw in a little taste of Jim Crow days in failed Confederate states and you’re getting close to culture as it is experienced by Israelis of Palestinian origins.

One thought on “Apartheid Israel closes TV station on Palestinian identity

  1. Alakazam says:

    “West Bank village anxiously awaits demolition : Palestinian activists say pressure from Israeli settlers is behind government plans to demolish their village.” http://www.aljazeera.com/news/2015/07/west-bank-village-anxiously-awaits-demolition-150723072827484.html “…Last week, the US state department said that demolishing the village “may worsen the atmosphere for a peaceful resolution and would set a damaging standard for displacement and land confiscation”.
    On Monday, European Union ministers echoed this line, asking that the Israeli government refrain from carrying out the demolitions, and calling for a “fundamental change” to Israeli policy in the occupied Palestinian territories. Khirbet Susiya has existed since the 19th century, but its Palestinian residents have been locked in a legal battle over the land since 1986.
    When archaeologists found the ruins of a synagogue there, Palestinians were expelled, their land was expropriated and the site was turned into an archaeological park run by Israeli settlers.”

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