• May 14 was the 75th anniversary of the founding of the state of Israel, what Palestinians call the “Naqba” or great catastrophe, when over 700,000 Palestinians were forced to flee their homes. Since the early 1990s, negotiations have repeatedly been held with the goal of reaching an agreement on a two-state solution and the establishment of a Palestinian state – talks that have long ago reached a dead end. Today, 3 million Palestinians in the occupied West Bank live under the aging leadership of Fatah’s Palestinian Authority, while 2 million live in Gaza under the governance of the nationalist Islamist Hamas movement. Another 7 million Palestinians refugees are spread across the Middle East and the rest of the world.
(“A Fading Dream of Independence,”Economist, May 11, 2023; “Neither Fatah nor Hamas: Arab News/YouGov Poll Shows Palestinians Want Nothing To Do With Their Leadership” Arab News, May 14, 2023)
• Brazil’s campaign to expel illegal miners from indigenous Yanomami territory has taken a violent turn. Five people were killed in a series of attacks in late April, in areas secured by troops from a Brazilian government led environmental protection force.
(“Brazil Battle to Reclaim Yanomami Lands Turns Deadly,” Guardian, May 1, 2023)
• In the stand-off over the federal debt ceiling, House Republicans are demanding new work requirements for recipients of food stamps and Medicaid. Yet, recent research has found that tough work requirements to receive food stamps under the SNAP program, used by 43 million Americans, would be counterproductive and force millions of vulnerable Americans to lose food aid.
(“Forcing More People to Work for Food Stamps is Harmful,” Center for Public Integrity, May 5, 2023)
This week’s News Summary was narrated by Anna Manzo.