Our New Year’s Eve show reviews some key events in Israel-Palestine in 2021 with clips from the past year’s programs. Jeff Halper, founder of the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions, explains the role of home demolitions and land confiscation in Israel’s ongoing drive to colonize Palestine and says the Zionist drive to make Palestine a Jewish rather than Arab land is in the final stage of completion. Phyllis Bennis, a fellow at the Institute for Policy Studies in Washington D.C., discusses the significan shift in the U.S. discourse on Israel-Palestine following the 11-day war in May of 2021 between Hamas and Israel. Bennis notes the war sparked an unprecedented level of criticism of Israel but criticism of Israel has yet to be translated into policy changes. The war triggered an apparent surge in anti-Semitic incidents along with new efforts to label criticism of Israel as anti-Semitism. Alison Weir, director of the non-profit If Americans Knew, discusses the history behind these efforts and the new definition of anti-Semitism first established by Israeli cabinet minister Natan Sharansky in 2004 and then promoted by members of the pro-Israel lobby in this country and around the world.
Israel-Palestine in 2021Margot Patterson