Israeli Youth BB-Q Outside Cells of Hunger Striking Palestinians

Israeli Youth BB-Q Outside Cells of Hunger Striking Palestinians”

Among the prisoners who have been moved from their regular cells is archterrorist Marwan Barghouti, responsible for the direct and indirect death of dozens of Israelis in terror attacks.

By leading this strike, analysts say, Barghouti has ably positioned himself as a serious candidate to lead the Palestinian people, with many in Israeli, Palestinian and worldwide political circles suggesting his role in the strike is directed as much at Israel's prison system as it is at current Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, who at 82 will soon need a successor.

A small number of Israeli hardliners held a barbecue nearby on the opposite side of a checkpoint, saying they hoped the smell would make prisoners' abstention harder. Notwithstanding his legal situation, Barghouti is nevertheless one of the most popular of all Palestinian leaders and invariably tops lists of those the population would like to see as the successor to Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas.

The almost three-day long program was "to highlight the Palestinian prisoners' issue, according to event co-founder Mohammed Haniyeh, "Now, we are planning to register our achievement with the Guinness Book of Records as the longest radio broadcast in the world", he told Anadolu Agency".

The Times also left out other key details in the criminal case against the Fatah official. Given this context, it is rather perverse for Israelis to set mythologized moral criteria of what a Palestinian leader should espouse - even if they acknowledge the violent pasts of Israeli leaders as well.

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For Palestinians, the prisons have become a stark symbol of Israel's occupation. On Monday, MK Michael Oren, who also served as Israel's ambassador to the USA, said that the incident merited the shuttering of the New York Times' Jerusalem bureau. Tens of thousands of Palestinian protesters marched and rallied in the West Bank and the Gaza strip in support of the strike. An Israel Prisons Service spokesman said some 1,100 inmates at eight jails had joined the strike. By Israel labeled a terrorist, many Palestinians regard him as a national hero.Prisoners' demands include the abolishment of detention without trial, more family visits, improvement of medical conditions and a pay phone in each prison wing.

Nearly 6,500 Palestinians are being held in 22 Israeli prisons, said Qadoura Fares, head of the Palestinian Prisoners' Club that advocates on behalf of the inmates.

"This strike can bring no harm to the Palestinian leadership, including Abbas".

The fixation on the bio of one leader's op-ed thus misses the important ripples occurring within circles of Palestinian society, and should be redirected toward comprehending the severity of Israel's imprisonment policies.

The article, penned to commemorate hunger-striking Palestinian prisoners on Palestinian Prisoners Day, pulls no punches against the regime that has imprisoned Mr. Barghouti.

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