Tel Aviv — His face half enshrouded in darkness, the Nigerian foreign worker stares out at the Dizengoff Street thoroughfare from a photograph in the window of the Rosenfeld Gallery as if to tempt passers-by into an obscured world for Israelis.
Beneath the photo, a few words of text explain the melancholy stare. To avoid deportation and free himself from an Israeli jail, “Kaster” became a police informant on smuggling operations on the border with Egypt.
Yakum, Israel — It’s been nearly 16 months since the guns along the border with Lebanon have fallen silent, but the last chapter in Israel’s bungled war against Hezbollah has yet to be closed.
The political fate of Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and the emotional baggage of dozens of bereaved parents will be riding on the conclusions of the Winograd Commission’s report on the war, which are scheduled to be released on Jan. 30.
Ashkelon, Israel — For the residents of this coastal city of 120,000, the 10 miles between the Gaza border and the center of town seemed like a comfortable buffer. But in the wake of last Thursday’s rocket hit on the northern edge of the city, the buffer has all but dissolved, nerves here are raw, and residents are wondering if their city will become the next Sderot.
Hila, Israel — Amid a flurry of reports about possible progress in prisoner-swap talks to secure the release of kidnapped Israeli Cpl. Gilad Shalit, his father Noam says he won’t get his hopes up despite signs of encouragement.
“It has only just started to move. It hasn’t reached an agreement. It has a much longer road to go,” he told The Jewish Week in an interview at the Shalit family home in this northern Israel hamlet.
Tel Aviv — An accord expanding U.S. Evangelical Christians’ stake in the innermost sanctums of the Zionist movement has produced an undercurrent of unease in Israel and North American Jewish leadership circles.
Petach Tikvah, Israel — Recounting how officials in this central-Israel city stonewalled complaints this month about the segregation of four Ethiopian schoolgirls, Daniel Uoria paused to answer his cell phone. It was an adviser to the deputy mayor.
"It’s because the minister of education is coming here to see what happened," explained Uoria, 29, after the call as he sat in an office at the headquarters of the Kadima Party. "Once you make a stink, suddenly everybody wants to help."
Tel Aviv — Work on Israel’s controversial separation barrier has ground to a virtual halt as the country’s attention — and budget funding — has shifted away from the threat of Palestinian suicide bombers from the West Bank, say fence advocates.
Tel Aviv — They risked arrest in Syria and Lebanon to offer Israelis back home rare glimpses of their neighbors, but now a top Israeli national security commentator, a popular blogger and a travel journalist are under police investigation for breaking a decades-old law banning travel to “enemy” states.
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