Against the grain: Gideon Levy

I’m busy wrapping up my part one of my fieldwork and it’s my last week here in Tel Aviv. I’ve gathered a serious amount of material – grit for the mill – and have met with some fantastically interesting and important people on all sides of the political – and military – spectrum. From them, I have learnt more than I ever could have imagined and its going to take some time to process all of the ‘data’ into something that I can share here. There is much more to come, so stay tuned. When I return next week I’ll resume something of a normal writing schedule. But for now, and something I need to work on is to stop writing and start sharing other mediums and material. So…

Last week Al Jazeera published a short (50 mins) film about Haaretz Journalist Gideon Levy. I met with Gideon at the start of the month, and in person he is very much like he is on paper: outspoken, passionate and serious. Often he is dubbed the ‘most hated man in Israel‘, but even if this were true (and I suspect it isn’t), the label effaces the fact that he also has many supporters: he is seen by some Leftists (though certainly not all) as the bearer of truth, one of the few men and women who report the worst of the worst of the Occupation. Whatever one makes of Gideon, he is honest and serious and his journalism is the effort of hard work and dedication. Unlike most of his colleagues at Haaretz he has made weekly visits to the Occupied Territories and it is these field-trips that  mark his approach as different to so many others: actually talking to the Palestinians who are most effected by Israeli policies. Simple though it may be, these visits are a radical act and they serve as a counterpoint to the disembodied and depersonalised military accounts of ‘clean operations’ and ‘precision strikes’. Levy’s work starts when the militaries job is done: After the bombs – real and metaphorical – there is Gideon Levy. For those interested in following his work I thoroughly recommend his book ‘The Punishment of Gaza’ (Verso 2010), but you’ll have to subscribe to Haaretz English if you want the recent stuff (unless you read Hebrew, in which case access is free  – at least for now).





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  1. Reblogged this on rhulgeopolitics and commented:
    Craig jones with another update from Tel Aviv, looking forward to seeing him at RHUL in the autumn!!

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