APN's Aaron Mann in Times of Israel: The right kind of ‘bias’

The comment by US State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert, made at a press briefing this past Wednesday, was as absurd as it was dangerous: “We are not going to state what the outcome [to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict] has to be. It has to be workable to both sides. And I think, really, that’s the best view as to not really bias one side over the other.”

By this logic, any expressed preference by the Trump administration for a two-state solution risks prejudging the outcome of the peace process in favor of either Israelis or Palestinians.

In reality, an explicit endorsement of a two-state solution is the most unbiased approach that the administration could take.

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The June 25th decision by the Israeli government to suspend the agreement to create a pluralistic prayer space at the Western Wall could not have been more poorly timed. Coinciding with a visit of American Jewish leaders to Israel and coupled with the government’s decision to further a bill tightening regulations on Jewish conversions, the message of disrespect, disregard, and rejection was thus maximized – as was the response.

Rabbi Rick Jacobs of the Union for Reform Judaism cancelled a planned dinner with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and, along with Rabbi Steve Wernick, CEO of the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism, called the decision a “betrayal.” Jerry Silverman, CEO of the Jewish Federations of North America called the move “a direct insult.” The outrage even included this line from Michael Siegel, the chairman of the Jewish Agency for Israel: “Support for Israel does not necessarily mean support for the Israeli government.”

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Briefing Call: UN Security Council special session on Israeli settlements

Friedman_SfardAPN hosted a briefing call on Friday, October 14th, at 3:00 pm Eastern Time with Lara Friedman, APN director of policy and government relations, and Israeli legal expert Michael Sfard. The call was moderated by APN's Aaron Mann.

Friedman and Sfard discussed the content of a UN Security Council special session, entitled “Illegal Israeli Settlements: An Obstacle to Peace and a Threat to the Two-State Solution,” at which Friedman spoke.

Listen to the briefing call here.

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Doomed to Succeed: The U.S.-Israel Relationship from Truman to Obama

Dennis Ross | Farrar, Straus and Giroux (2015)
Book Review (Kirkus Reviews) | CampusBooks

Revisiting Rabin's Assassination, And The Peace That Might Have Been

Fresh Air (2015)
Twenty years ago, Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin was killed by a Jewish religious zealot. Dan Ephron, author of Killing a King, discusses the assassination and its effect on the peace process. (37:59) Listen >

Israel's Channel 10 Report - Honenu

Channel 10 News (2015)
Reports on Honenu, a tax-exempt organization that provides legal aid to Israeli Jews indicted for terrorism. Reveals that the individuals convicted of terrorism and their families also receive funds. (7:01) Watch >

Standing Idly By: IDF Soldiers’ Inaction in the Face of Offenses Perpetrated by Israelis Against Palestinians in the West Bank

Yesh Din (June 21, 2015)
Addresses Israeli soldiers’ practice of standing idly by in the face of crimes committed by Israeli civilians against Palestinians and their property in the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT), a common practice that is "almost as old as the occupation itself." Read More >

Mock Enforcement: The Failure to Enforce the Law On Israeli Civilians in the West Bank

Yesh Din (May 17, 2015)
Finds that there has been a profound failure of the law enforcement apparatus in the West Bank and an inability by Israel to uphold its obligations under both Israeli and international law to protect the Palestinian population living in the areas it holds under military control. Provides specific, operative recommendations for addressing each of the identified deficiencies. PDF >

Israel's Dark Future

Max Fisher / Vox (April 13, 2015)
Account of present Israeli political and societal trends that severely undermine Israel's democratic character and are largely a consequence of Israel's continued occupation of the West Bank. Read More >

Meet Bibi’s New Tribulation-Courting, Jew-Converting, Demon-Exorcising American Allies

Rachel Tabachnick / The Daily Beast (March 22, 2015)
Netanyahu and Christian Zionists have long enjoyed a mutually beneficial relationship. But with a new, more radical sect ascending within the movement, the marriage may be in trouble. Read More >

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