The anti-normalization movement is very powerful Palestinian movement. It opposes anything that “normalizes” Israeli-Palestinian relations, hounding everyone from entrepeneurs, grass roots peace groups, feel-good political delegations, and even Lionel Messi and FC Barcelona. (Is nothing sacred?)
Reconciliation and normalization are dirty words, which is why even Nelson Mandela would be run out of Ramallah if he were alive today.
Fadi Arouri, a Ramallah photojournalist and one of the anti-normalization movement’s big names (honored by readers as one of the Dishonest Reporters of 2013), obtained a permit to enter Israel. He even showed it off on Facebook. The District Coordination Office permit is dated January 16, and Arouri can go anywhere in Israel except for Eilat.
It got our attention because Arouri has an interesting history with Israeli reporters who visit the PA. Among other things, Arouri has:
- Disrupted the work of veteran Israeli Arab journalist Mohammed Najib, who was interviewing people in Ramallah. Najib couldn’t continue working for fear of his life.
- Incited Palestinian journalists to protest the presence of Israeli reporter Yoram Cohen at a PA press conference.
- Campaigned against a Press Freedom Day event in Ramallah simply because it was organized by the United States consulate.
- Staged a confrontation with soldiers so he and his friends could sell the photos.
I hope Arouri has a normal time in Israel, meeting the normal Israelis he normally chases out of Ramallah.
(Image of Arouri via Vimeo/Fadi Arouri)