West Bank

Rally Roundup

01/09/2008
Israel Correspondent

Jerusalem — President George W. Bush’s three-day visit to Israel has spurred a rush of grass-roots activism by Israelis who want the American and Israeli governments to hear their message.

Unfortunately for the protesters, the government’s decision to hermetically seal much of Jerusalem from Wednesday through Friday, coupled with its reluctance to grant permits for anything requiring even a modest police presence — meant that most events had to be held prior to Bush’s arrival.

Har Homa: The New Front Line?

12/26/2007
Israel Correspondent

Jerusalem — The terrace of Moshe Matitya’s spacious apartment in the Har Homa neighborhood in the eastern part of Jerusalem affords the computer programmer sweeping views of Bethlehem to the south and the rolling Judean Hills to the east and west.

These days, the view, which was a selling point when Matitya moved his family to this controversial neighborhood from the German Colony almost three years ago, is making him nervous. And it’s making him feel as if he may now be on the front line of a new conflict with the Palestinians and the Americans.

The Height Of Pessimism

10/12/2007
Israel Correspondent

Jerusalem — The bus and highway billboards are, well, explosive.

In the first signs of life from the settler movement since the disengagement from Gaza two years ago, the notices — which signal the Yesha Council of Jewish settlements disgust at next month’s planned summit between Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas (Abu Mazen) — insist that “The Agreement between Olmert and ‘Abu Bluff’ Will Explode in Our Faces.”

Israeli Public Opinion On The Summit: The Height Of Pessimism

10/11/2007
Israel Correspondent

Jerusalem — The bus and highway billboards are, well, explosive.

In the first signs of life from the settler movement since the disengagement from Gaza two years ago, the notices — which signal the Yesha Council of Jewish settlement’s disgust at next month’s planned summit between Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas (Abu Mazen) — insist that “The Agreement between Olmert and ‘Abu Bluff’ Will Explode in Our Faces.”

Homebuyer Heartache In The Holy Land

08/17/2007
Israel Correspondent

Modi’in Illit, the West Bank — For anyone thinking of purchasing an Israeli apartment scheduled to be built in a year or two — many of whom are likely to be Americans, given the foreign investment boom — let the buyer beware.

So says Chaim, a clean-cut 24-year-old fervently Orthodox father of one, with another on the way, who purchased an apartment from the building company Heftsiba in this fervently Orthodox settlement just over the Green Line.

The Uncertainty Principle

03/29/2002
Staff Writer

In 1999, before the intifada deepened Israeli and Palestinian mutual distrust, Israeli artists Bosmat Alon and Tirtza Even visited the West Bank to shoot a video critical of Israeli policies to curtail Palestinian life.

Introduced by Israeli leftist activists to former political prisoners and ordinary families, Alon and Even spent months in the contested outskirts of Hebron and the cramped streets of the Deheishe camp near Bethlehem.

Giving The Settlers A Human Face

01/17/2003

The West Bank lies half a world away from the white bread setting of "The Stepford Wives." But like the robotic Connecticut housewives of the 1975 sci-fi thriller, the female protagonists of Ruth Walk's new documentary, "The Settlers," move about in blissful oblivion.

Through saccharine smiles, the women Walk profiles profess to willfully ignore the hundreds of thousands of Palestinians who surround their tiny enclave at Tel Rumeida, the ancient site of biblical Hebron and home to seven settler families.

For Leviev, All That Glitters Isn’t Gold

02/22/2008
Special to The Jewish Week

 

Perhaps he should have stayed behind the scenes.

Ever since billionaire diamond and real estate magnate Lev Leviev began to raise his profile and personalize his brand with the opening of deluxe diamond shops in London in 2006 and here in 2007, the 51-year-old Uzbekistan-born tycoon has run into a sustained string of bad news and adverse publicity. Even a hagiographic profile in The New York Times Magazine last September — in which he revealed a secret desire to become prime minister of Israel within 10 years — seems not to have helped.

Can significant numbers of American Jews be enticed into buying homes in Jewish settlements on the far side of Israel’s separation fence?

03/09/2007
Special to The Jewish Week

 Can significant numbers of American Jews be enticed into buying homes in Jewish settlements on the far side of Israel’s separation fence? 

Based on the results of real estate fairs that two emissaries of the settler movement held with potential buyers in Orthodox synagogues in Teaneck, N.J., and Hillcrest, Queens, on Sunday, the answer may well be a qualified “Yes.” 

The response was “positive beyond anything we had imagined before coming here,” said Aliza Herbst, spokesperson for Yesha Council leader Pinchas Wallerstein.

A Suspected Pedophile Eludes The System

05/08/2009
Special to The Jewish Week

 A married Jew with peyos and a black hat, Stefan Colmer used to spend hours, according to reports, reading the Talmud in the main study hall of the Mirrer Yeshiva on Ocean Parkway in Brooklyn. While there, he also befriended some boys  in and around the yeshiva and, on occasion, invited a few of them to his nearby home.

And, according to a source close to the case, Colmer allegedly sexually abused several of them — in addition to other young boys from the “general neighborhood” near the yeshiva, a law enforcement source believes.

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