A woman named Amal Altaramasi was killed Friday while participating in the 43rd week of the Great Return March demonstrations at the separation fence between Gaza and Israel. Also Friday, my friend on Birthright texted me a picture of himself smiling atop Masada, thumbs up. He'd learned a new Hebrew slang word, "Sababa." Cool. Over 70 years, millions of Jews (and other tourists) have visited Israel over generations and shared in a safe, fun, positive experience without encountering Palestinians or interacting with Palestinian realities and then come home believing they've "seen it" and "really know what it's like." Israeli tourism has remained strong throughout the near-year of demonstrations in Gaza, suggesting that the Great Return March has very little effect on the regular order of life in Israel, despite the justification of the ongoing blockade of Gaza being predicated on the notion of an imminent existential threat to Israel (and the Jewish people). The existential threat...
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