As Taisir, our art director, was doing the layout for the articles of this issue, he sent me the following message: “Bringing out the worst of Palestine!” It was an ironic twist directed at TWiP’s main slogan: “Bringing out the best of Palestine.”
The theme of the current January 2017 issue is “Palestine and the Common Good,” and as one might expect, the issue has a good number of articles (with illustrative images) that tackle some of our negative social behaviors such as littering, bad driving, tampering with public property, etc. Taisir was right; not only does this issue not promote Palestine, it seems also to give readers a negative image of the place. However, since we claim also to document Palestine, I believe we owe it to ourselves and to Palestine to address a topic that is not very flattering, bearing in mind that avoiding such topics would not help solve the problems; it even might exasperate the situation. In addition, we’d like to leave our readers with the impression that – similar to any other people in the world – we have our faults and shortcomings, but we are bold enough to discuss them in a transparent manner and call a spade a spade.
The current January 2017 issue marks a milestone for TWiP since the online version is now only accessible by subscription. We finally did it! – after eighteen years of publication and a number of months announcing it. A heartfelt thank you to those who have already subscribed. For those of you who are still wondering whether to subscribe, please consider this an invitation to do so now in order to stay in touch with the issues emerging from Palestine. It is important to mention that the lead article of every issue will remain accessible to all, as will the message from the editor and my column. The link to the table of contents and to the themes of our forthcoming issues will also remain accessible. Furthermore, should any future issue receive full sponsorship, the entire contents will be made accessible to all. But of course, for those who have subscribed, an extra month will be added to their account. Fair is fair!
Chapter two of This Week in Palestine has just started, and we look forward to your engagement and your support. In return, we promise to remain faithful to our mandate to promote and document Palestine and to bring out the best in Palestine, even if it means exposing our dirty laundry from time to time!
Finally, my wish for 2017 is tranquility and an end to the years of bloody conflicts that our part of the world has witnessed. I pray that a new era of development will pave the way to a better future, particularly for the new generation. A Merry Christmas to those who have not yet celebrated and a Happy and Wonderful New Year to all.