Stories

Social Change at a Cafe Innovative SHATIL partnership shows how

15 December 2008 By New Israel Fund

Last week the partnership between SHATIL and the famous Jerusalem literary café Tmol Shilshom continued with a SHATIL-organized lecture and discussion by Moshe Karif, one of the founders of the Mizrachi Democratic Rainbow and a lecturer at Bar Ilan University. The collaboration was conceived as a means to introduce more social change topics to the café's popular "Behind the Headlines" series of lectures and, judging by the enthusiastic response to this and past lectures, has been well received by the public and café patrons.

Karif spoke about his new book, Mizrachit, and last year's successful High Court suit to protect public lands, which was waged together with the SHATIL-coordinated Land Forum. In a number of poignant anecdotes Mr. Karif described how they succeeded in raising awareness about the inequality in land allocations, literally moving this issue from the real estate section of the business page to the front pages of newspapers across the country. Another point of interest was the Mizrachi Democratic Rainbow's current campaign against the inordinate power of Israel's major banks, particularly their oligarchic business practices and lack of transparency.

The event was moderated by Shmulik David, a SHATIL advocacy consultant who works closely with the Land Forum. "The evening was a great opportunity to see how a unique organization like the Democratic Rainbow was established and crystallized," said Shmulik. "He [Karif] provided rare inspiration and real strategies about how the average citizen can stand up to powerful interests and triumph."

 

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