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July 10 2014

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Growing Up Privileged in Apartheid, Colonial Israel - Shir Hever on Reality Asserts Itself (1/5) | TRNN 2014-07-09

Shir Hever is an economic researcher in the Alternative Information Center, a Palestinian-Israeli organization active in Jerusalem and Beit-Sahour. Hever researches the economic aspect of the Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territory, some of his research topics include the international aid to the Palestinians and to Israel, the effects of the Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories on the Israeli economy, and the boycott, divestment and sanctions campaigns against Israel. His work also includes giving lectures and presentations on the economy of the occupation. He is a graduate student at the Freie Universitat in Berlin, and researches the privatization of security in Israel. His first book: Political Economy of Israel’s Occupation: Repression Beyond Exploitation, was published by Pluto Press.


HEVER: I was born in Jerusalem, and I was born into a lefty household, a critical household. And the most important thing that I think my parents taught me and raised me with is this idea that I have to be aware of my own privileges and to take responsibility for them, because Israeli society is extremely divided and extremely hierarchical, and I am lucky to have been born male, white, Jewish, Ashkenazi, so in all of these categories in which I had an advantage, and my parents told me this is an unfair advantage.


JAY: Now, just because it’s an interesting kind of historical note, there’s kind of two types of Zionist fascists. There are Zionists who are simply very aggressive against Palestinians and people called them fascists, and then there are Zionists who loved Mussolini.

HEVER: Yeah, I’m talking about the second kind. I’m talking about real—people who really adopt this kind of Zionist—or this kind of fascist ideology that the state is above everything, and that we all have to conform to a certain idea, and that we should find our great leader. So that kind of Zionism is not mainstream, actually, and it’s not in power. In many demonstrations that I had the chance to go to, people tend to shout that fascism will not pass.But, of course, when you look at it from a more academic point of view, there’s a difference between fascism and other kinds of repressive regimes, and I would say Israel is a colonial regime, a colonialist regime, in which there’s apartheid, there’s very deep entrenched repression.

But in a colonialist system there’s always fear. And you grow up with this fear also. You always know—.

JAY: Did you?

HEVER: Yeah, yeah. I mean, when I would go to certain areas or when I took a taxi with a Palestinian driver, then even my closest family would get nervous about it. And then it made me wonder: how come you taught me that everybody’s equal but you’re still afraid of Palestinians?


(M)y close family, my immediate family, they were very supportive of my opinions. And we had many political debates at home—sometimes arguments, but in the end I think for the outsider it doesn’t seem like we’re that much far apart. When you go a little bit further to the extended family, then that’s a whole different story. And most of the family on my mother’s side stopped speaking with me after I decided not to go to the army. And so, yeah, my mother’s parents, who were fighters in the Palmach, they had a completely different worldview and a very Zionist right-wing perspective in which they believe that all of these policies against Palestinians were completely justified.

JAY: And your grandparents, were any of them—when did they come to Israel? Did you have direct family that were killed during World War II?

HEVER: Yeah. So this is actually the exact—the interesting intersection of two stories, because my mother’s side of the family came to Palestine before the Holocaust, before the Second World War, and participated in the Nakba against Palestinians. And my father’s family—.

JAY: So they came during the ’30s or ’20s?

HEVER: Yeah, over some time, but yeah. And my father’s family came right after the war. They escaped from the Nazis in Poland. And the vast majority of the family in Poland was exterminated by the Nazis. So they escaped to the Soviet Union, where they lived pretty harsh years during the war. And then the family scattered again, and that part of the family that chose to go to Palestine, to Israel, happened to be my side of the family.


HEVER: That is a concept called Hebrew labor, and it was done very openly and without shame because there was at that point of time no concept that such structural and comprehensive racism against a particular group of people is something that Jews should also be worried about. I mean, it wasn’t something that was even in people’s minds so much, because Palestinians were part of the scenery, part of the background, and not treated as the native inhabitants of Palestine. But it has to be said also that during those fights it wasn’t—even though it was a colonial situation, in which Zionists were supported by foreign powers in coming and colonizing Palestine, it wasn’t clear if they were going to succeed or not, and it wasn’t clear until 1948 whether they would succeed or not. So from the personal stories of these people, they saw themselves as heroes or as overcoming a great adversity, and not as people who had all their options and decided that here’s a little piece of land that we want to add to our collection. From their point of view, this was their chance to have their own piece of land, and when looking at the colonial powers, the European colonial powers operating all of the world, they didn’t think that what they were doing was so strange or peculiar.


HEVER: And during the ’90s there was—the Oslo process began. There was a coalition between Yitzhak Rabin from the Labor Party and Meretz, which was the part that they supported. Meretz was the liberal party for human rights, but still a Zionist party. And this coalition started to negotiate with Yasser Arafat and to start the Oslo process. But at the same time, they would implement these policies that were just completely undemocratic and—for example, to take 400 people who were suspected of being members of the Hamas Party without a trial and just deport them. And at that point my parents had a kind of crisis of faith and they decided not to support his party anymore. And I would say this is the moment where Zionism was no longer accepted.


HEVER: I think the moment that I made that choice is actually much later, because it’s possible to have all these opinions but still play the game and go to any regular career path. But after I decided not to go into the army and after I decided to go to university, in the university I experienced something that changed my mind.

JAY: But back up one moment. You decide not to go into the army. (...) That’s a big decision in Israel.

HEVER: Well, I was again lucky to be in this very interesting time period where Netanyahu just became prime minister, and he was being very bombastic about his announcements, and a lot of people started doubting the good sense of going into the army. So it was a time where it was relatively easy to get out. At first I thought, I will go into the army, because I went to a very militaristic school. My school was very proud of all the intelligence officers that used to come out of it. So I thought, okay, I don’t want to be an occupier, I don’t want to be a combat soldier in the occupied territory, but if I’ll find some some kind of loophole that I can be a teacher or do some kind of noncombat work for the army, I’ll do that.


And I used to support the Oslo process, because I used to read the Israeli newspapers, and it seemed like Israel is being very generous and willing to negotiate, when in fact—. But my mother, I said that she was working for the government. She would bring me some documents about the Oslo process, and there I would be able to read about the water allocation and about land allocation and say, well, this is certainly not a fair kind of negotiation. But then, when the Second Intifada started, it was repressed with extreme violence by the Israeli military, by the Israeli police. And that was also a moment in which I felt that even living in Israel is becoming unbearable for me. But there’s always kind of the worry, is it going to get to the next step? I think this immediate tendency to compare it with the ’30s in Germany is because it’s a Jewish society.



oAnth :


The Palmach (Hebrew: פלמ"ח, acronym for Plugot Maḥatz (Hebrew: פלוגות מחץ), lit. “strike forces”) was the elite fighting force of the Haganah, the underground army of the Yishuv (Jewish community) during the period of the British Mandate for Palestine. The Palmach was established on 15 May 1941. By the outbreak of the Israeli War for Independence in 1948 it consisted of over 2,000 men and women in three fighting brigades and auxiliary aerial, naval and intelligence units. With the creation of Israel’s army, the three Palmach Brigades were disbanded. This and political reasons led to many of the senior Palmach officers resigning in 1950.


Meretz defines itself as a Zionist, left-wing, social-democratic party. The party is a member of the Socialist International and an observer member of the Party of European Socialists. It sees itself as the political representative of the Israeli Peace movement in the Knesset – as well as municipal councils and other local political bodies.
In the international media it has been described as left-wing, social-democratic, dovish, secular, civil libertarian, and anti-occupation.

Hebrew Labor

"Hebrew labor" is often also referred to as “Jewish labor” although the former is the literal translation of “avoda ivrit”. According to Even-Zohar the immigrants of the Second Aliyah preferred to use the word “Hebrew” because they wanted to emphasize the difference between their “new Hebrew” identity and the “old Diaspora Jewish” identity. For them the word “Hebrew” had romantic connotations with the “purity” and “authenticity” of the existence of the “Hebrew nation in its land”, like it had been in the past.

    Related to the concept of “Hebrew labor” was the concept of “alien labor”. Ben-Gurion wrote about the settlers of the First Aliyah: “They introduced the idol of exile to the temple of national rebirth, and the creation of the new homeland was desecrated by avodah zara”. According to Shapira avodah zara means both “alien labor” and, in a religious sense, “idol worship”. Along with bloodshed and incest this is one of the three worst sins in Judaism. Application of this concept to the employment of Arab workers by Jews depicted this as a taboo.



March 17 2013


“In der Früh schafft er es nicht aus dem Bett
weil er abends seine Augen nicht
von dem glühenden Bildschirm lösen kann.”

Postkarte von Iwan Semionow, 1959

(Gefunden bei | via nydwracu)

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March 01 2013

La nature est-elle impersonnelle ? Une typologie des singularités chez Deleuze – par Didier Debaise | Entre-là

In « L’Impersonnel », colloque international organisé par le Laboratoire ERRAPHIS (Equipe de Recherches sur les Rationalités Philosophiques et les Savoirs) et EuroPhilosophie dans le cadre du programme ANR “Subjectivité et aliénation. Université Toulouse II-Le Mirail, 24-25 juin 2010.

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February 26 2013

February 23 2013

February 20 2013


February 19 2013

February 13 2013

Reorganizing a vast Archive: ITS - SPIEGEL ONLINE

By David Crossland in Bad Arolsen, Germany


Global Web of Memory

Reorganizing the database is one of the tasks of Susanne Urban, the ITS head of research, who joined the archive in 2009 after working in Yad Vashem, Israel's official memorial to the Holocaust. She says she expects the archive to reveal a plethora of "mosaic stones" to complete the picture of the genocide rather than alter it.

"Here you keep getting confronted with the global aspect of the Holocaust and survival, you see how it started in Germany, spread across Europe and with the documents about the survivors we see how a web of memory has spread across the whole world. Here you get an overview over everything. What makes it so harrowing is that you don't just get one aspect, you get them all. You sense this monolith that was built of pain and sorrow."

The work may be fascinating, but it can also be exhausting and saddening. Urban has only two research assistants on temporary contracts, which she says isn't enough.

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Destins d’exilés. Fremd bin ich den Menschen dort

En 2013, la Maison des Buddenbrooks de Lübeck consacre deux grandes expositions au thème de l’exil. L’une d’entre elles, intitulée « Traumland und Zuflucht. Heinrich Mann und Frankreich » (« Pays de rêve et refuge. Heinrich Mann et la France »), le rapport de l’écrivain Heinrich Mann à la France. Elle sera présentée du 14 juin au 3 novembre 2013, et s’inscrira dans le cadre des célébrations du 50e anniversaire du traité franco-allemand de l’Élysée.


Éminente figure de la littérature allemande du début du XXe siècle et frère aîné du Prix Nobel de littérature, Thomas Mann, Heinrich Mann aimait profondément la France. Artistiquement, politiquement, intellectuellement. Avant la Première Guerre mondiale, il y voyait ainsi l’antithèse démocratique du régime autoritaire de l’Allemagne impériale.


Heinrich Mann et la France

Lorsqu’Hitler devint chancelier, en 1933, Heinrich Mann prit immédiatement le chemin de l’exil en traversant le Rhin. Il devint l’une des figures de l’émigration allemande en France dans les années 1930. La situation perdura jusqu’en 1940. Heinrich Mann dut alors quitter la France occupée pour rejoindre sa famille et son frère Thomas, installés depuis 1938 aux États-Unis. Jamais cependant, il ne devint comme ce dernier une figure de l’émigration allemande outre-Atlantique. Son intégration fut plus difficile.

Comme Heinrich et Thomas Mann, beaucoup d’Allemands de cette époque virent leur destin basculer à l’arrivée au pouvoir des nazis. Juifs, opposants communistes ou socialistes, artistes « dégénérés » : l’exil fut leur seul refuge. France, États-Unis, mais aussi Suisse, Brésil, Grande-Bretagne, Palestine, Turquie : leurs destinations furent multiples. Mais tous, firent l’expérience existentielle de l’exil, marquée par les difficultés à s’intégrer, par la nécessité de se fondre dans une autre culture, une autre langue, de refaire sa vie…


Expérience existentielle

Ces destins d’exilés sont le sujet d’une autre exposition de la Maison des Buddenbrooks. Jusqu’au 26 mai, celle-ci retrace 16 destins d’artistes, de chercheurs, de juristes ou encore d’artisans contraints de quitter l’Allemagne entre 1933 et 1945. L’exposition est parrainée par l’écrivain germanophone d’origine roumaine et Prix Nobel de littérature, Hertha Müller, elle-même figure de l’exil imposé par la dictature communiste.


Rund eine halbe Million Menschen verloren nach der Machtübernahme der Nationalsozialisten ihre bisherige Heimat. Sie wurden verfolgt und entrechtet, weil sie Juden waren, politisch oder kulturell unliebsam oder als »Volks- und Reichsfeinde« betrachtet wurden. Anlässlich des 100jährigen Jubiläums der Deutschen Nationalbibliothek wurden von dem dort angesiedelten Exilarchiv Biografien von 16 Persönlichkeiten zu einer inszenierten Ausstellung zusammengestellt, die exklusiv im Buddenbrookhaus zu Gast ist. Vorgestellt werden nicht die prominenten Exilanten, zu denen auch Familie Mann gehörte, sondern weniger bekannte Künstler, Wissenschaftler, Juristen oder Handwerker, denen allen gemein ist, dass ihr weiterer Lebensweg durch die erzwungene Flucht aus dem deutschen Machtbereich geprägt wurde.

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Die „Banalität des Bösen“

Margarethe von Trottas Film über Hannah Arendt.
Von Alexandra Pontzen (13.02.2013).

Margarethe von Trotta hat ihrer filmbiografischen Galerie von ‚starken Frauen‘, nach Gudrun Ensslin, Rosa Luxemburg und Hildegard von Bingen, ein weiteres Porträt hinzugefügt, das der vor den Nazis 1941 nach New York geflohenen  und ebendort 1975 verstorbenen deutsch-jüdischen Philosophin Hannah Arendt.

Unter dem verkürzten Titel „Hannah Arendt“ – auf den Zusatz des Originaltitels „Ihr Denken veränderte die Welt“ wurde in der deutschen Präsentation eher verzichtet (er hätte auch zu sehr an den in der DDR gängigen, auf Lenin gemünzten Spruch „Er rührte an den Schlaf der Welt“ erinnert) – erlebte der Film im Beisein der nordrhein-westfälischen Ministerpräsidentin und dreier ihrer Ministerinnen am 8. Januar in Essen seine deutsche Erstaufführung und gelangte ab dem übernächsten Tag in die deutschen Kinos. Kaum ein deutsches Feuilleton lässt sich finden, das dem Werk nicht seine Aufmerksamkeit und Reverenz erwiesen hätte – und beides, soviel vorweg, dürfte sich mindestens ebenso doppelter politischer Korrektheit, feministisch wie historisch grundierter, wie seinem filmkünstlerischen Rang verdanken.


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February 08 2013

This week in 1919: The birth of Egypt’s Hitchcock

One of Egypt’s pioneering filmmakers, Kamal El Sheikh, was born on 5 February 94 years ago.

Sheikh is known as the “Egyptian Hitchcock,” after British film director Alfred Hitchcock, because of the similarities between the two filmmakers’ styles.

Sheikh, who died in 2004, directed 35 films. His first movie was “House No. 13” (Al-Manzel Raqam 13) in 1952 and his last was “The Time Conqueror” (Kaher al-Zaman) in 1987.

Unlike Hitchcock, whose first few films were not that successful, Sheikh’s “House No. 13” garnered both commercial success and critical acclaim.

The film’s plot was quite complex compared to mainstream cinema at that time, which tended to rely on simplistic romantic themes and songs. In the experimental thriller, a psychiatrist hypnotizes one of his patients to kill people.

But Sheikh’s directorial and intellectual style crystallized more in his third film, “Life or Death,” (Hayat Aw Mout), produced in 1955. Critics consider “Life or Death” one of the greatest Egyptian films ever made. It is one of the few films made during that era with Cairo as its main focus. (Egypt independent)


More :

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Nächtlicher Regen in Kyoto

Kotozuka Eiichi (1906-1976): Nächtlicher Regen in Kyoto

(Gefunden bei Couleurs)

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Tout l’univers No. 95 (Éditions Hachette 1962). Illustrator: A. Feddini

(Gefunden bei mondorama2000)

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February 03 2013

« Lise Meitner, mère de la bombe atomique » de Wolf von Truchsess et Andreas G. Wagner (FR)

// Google search on Lise Meitner

Reposted bysciencemihaicontinuum

February 01 2013

Rezension: Joke und Petra Frerichs, Literarische Entdeckungen. Vergessene und neu gelesene Texte

In ihrem Buch Literarische Entdeckungen. Vergessene und neu gelesene Texte stellen Joke und Petra Frerichs eine Reihe von Schriftstellern vor, die der Literaturbetrieb weitgehend ignoriert oder schlichtweg vergessen hat (Schreyer; Mickel; Hilbig; Némirovsky; Reimann; Steffens; Wilms). Sie wieder stärker in den Fokus der Aufmerksamkeit zu rücken, ist eines der Anliegen des Buches.
Andere Werke haben die Autoren nach erneuter Lektüre neu interpretiert; das gilt für Die Wellen von Virginia Woolf; Rot und Schwarz von Stendhal und die Lyrik Rolf Dieter Brinkmanns. Und schließlich wurde die Erzählung Die Augen von Dieter Wellershoff analysiert, deren subtile Konstruktion sie zur Auseinandersetzung mit dem Text reizte.

Als ein Beispiel für „vergessene“ Autoren kann Wolfgang Schreyer gelten.
Wolfgang Schreyer gehörte zu den Erfolgsautoren der früheren DDR. Er schrieb zahlreiche gesellschaftskritische Kriminal-, Abenteuer- und Science-Fiction-Romane, die eine Gesamtauflage von ca. 6 Millionen erreichten; hinzu kommen Film- und Fernsehdrehbücher. Er erhielt u.a. den Heinrich-Mann-Preis.
Die Werke Schreyers werden überwiegend der Unterhaltungs-Literatur zugerechnet. Dass diese „Zurechnung“ immer auch einen negativen Unterton enthält, mag einer der Gründe dafür sein, dass Schreyer nach der Wende nahezu in Vergessenheit geriet. Das erstaunt umso mehr, als Schreyer mit seinen Romanen Unabwendbar (1988), Nebel (1991) und Das Quartett (1994) eine Wende-Trilogie von beachtlicher literarischer Qualität vorgelegt hat.

In seinem Roman Das Quartett schildert Schleyer, wie sich die Profiteure der Deutschen Einheit die Filetstücke des Kunst- und Immobilienmarktes gegenseitig zuschanzen. Er zeigt, wie ein schier undurchdringlicher Sumpf aus Wirtschaft, Politik und Justiz entsteht; ein fein geknüpftes Netzwerk, an dessen Knotenpunkten meist westdeutsche Investoren sitzen, die sich mit Hilfe willfähriger und zuweilen auch korrupter Politiker sog. Schnäppchen unter den Nagel reißen. Dass dabei immer wieder auch Recht und Gesetz gebeugt und wenn es sein muss auch gebrochen werden, liegt in der Natur der Sache. Es wird gezeigt, wie die geballte Kapitalmacht das Land wie eine Naturgewalt überrollt und umkrempelt.
Prototyp dieser Entwicklung ist ein gewisser Prill; ein Wendehals, wie er im Buche steht. Von ihm heißt es an einer Stelle des Romans:

Er stinkt nach Geld. Immobilien, Seehandel, Tourismus, Investoren. Sein Team schiebt für ihn die Millionen hin und her, ganz legal. Wenig Strafsachen, außer vielleicht den eigenen!

Überall haben die Aasgeier des Kapitalismus ihre Finger drin. Und stets stellen sie ihr Tun so dar, als diente es dem Wohl der Allgemeinheit, der Erhaltung von Arbeitsplätzen usw.

Hauptmann Wendt, ein zunächst überzeugter und aufrichtiger Repräsentant des alten Sicherheitsapparats der DDR, steckt irgendwann selbst mittendrin in dem ganzen Schlamassel. Er hat von den illegalen Machenschaften im Zusammenhang mit verschwundenen Kunstwerken Wind bekommen. Aber wie sehr er sich auch bemüht, eine lückenlose Beweiskette zu liefern und noch andere Verstrickungen der Täter in illegale Geschäftspraktiken nachzuweisen – er steht vor einer Mauer des Schweigens. Die Ergebnisse seiner Ermittlungen will keiner hören. Sie sind politisch nicht erwünscht, stören das Image des erfolgreichen Aufbaus Ost.

Wendt erlebt – wie zur Zeit der Wende – noch einmal die ganze Machtlosigkeit des Sicherheitsapparates. In das unentwirrbare Gespinst aus Wirtschaft, Recht und Politik sieht er auch den Polizeiapparat eingebunden; denn auch der spielt mit. Eine Hand wäscht die andere und alle versuchen, davon zu profitieren. Das ist nicht mehr die Welt von Wendt; er ist zum Störfaktor geworden und wird schließlich mit fadenscheinigen Begründungen suspendiert.

Schreyer hat seine drei Wenderomane so konzipiert, dass man sie auch einzeln und für sich lesen kann. In Unabwendbar entwickelt er die Charaktere Wendt und Jenny, die zu Protagonisten der auseinander strebenden DDR-Gesellschaft mutieren. Der eigentliche Wenderoman aber ist Nebel. Hier zeigt Schreyer, wie der historische Veränderungsprozess sich in den subjektiven Wahrnehmungen und Erfahrungen der Akteure niederschlägt; wie er an Fahrt gewinnt und irgendwann unumkehrbar wird. Schreyer schildert die Entwicklung zur sog. Wende überaus anschaulich und stets spannend; durch seine Schilderungen wird sie auf einmal greifbar und begreifbar. Es ist das große Verdienst Schreyers, den geschichtlichen Verlauf einerseits bis ins Detail dokumentiert, aber darüber hinaus auch gezeigt zu haben, welche emotionalen Wirkungen sie auf Seiten der Beteiligten ausgelöst hat. Beide Ebenen aufeinander bezogen und in Einklang gebracht zu haben – das ist eine schriftstellerische Leistung, die Beachtung verdient. Umso unbegreiflicher ist es, dass Schreyers Romane nach der Wende kaum noch rezipiert wurden. Der interessengesteuerte, schnelllebige Literaturmarkt hatte für einen derart sensiblen Stoff offenbar keinen Sensor.
Die Romane von Wolfgang Schreyer sind im Verlag Das Neue Berlin erschienen.

Eine ausführliche Besprechung der Romane Schreyers und der o.g. Autoren findet sich in:
Literarische Entdeckungen. Vergessene und neu gelesene Texte von Joke und Petra Frerichs, erschienen 2012 bei BoD.

January 31 2013

Stanley Kubrick an IBM

In August of 1966, 2 years prior to the release of 2001: A Space Odyssey, Stanley Kubrick wrote to the vice president of his production company and asked whether IBM — a company with whom Kubrick consulted during production, and whose logo briefly appears in the film  — were aware of HAL’s murderous actions in the story. His letter, and Roger Caras’s reply, can be seen below.

It’s worth noting that both Stanley Kubrick and Arthur C. Clarke have since denied that HAL represented IBM, and have claimed that the “one-letter shift” between the names “HAL” and “IBM” is purely coincidental.

(Gefunden bei

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January 23 2013

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