Briefing call with Israeli strategic affairs analyst Yossi Alpher

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Israeli strategic affairs expert Yossi Alpher, the author of APN's Hard Questions, Tough Answers, was our guest on an April 8 briefing call, mainly focusing on the crisis in the US-led Israeli-Palestinian negotiations process.

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Peace Process Hanging in the Balance

Secretary of State John Kerry cut short a tour to Europe Monday to rush to Israel and the West Bank to salvage the US-brokered peace process from collapse.

The reason for the current crisis, the most severe since the beginning the so-called Kerry initiative eight months ago, is the Israeli government’s balking at the release of Palestinian security prisoners, convicted terrorists who Israel has committed to releasing as a gesture to the Palestinians.

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APN's Ori Nir in Haaretz: Two-staters, unite behind Kerry

kerry_briefing_2014-320x265You don’t have to love everything that the U.S. Secretary of State will present in his 'framework’ paper - but there is too much at stake not to support a chance for peace.

There’s a kind of hush in the peace camp as Secretary of State John Kerry prepares to issue the “framework” for continued Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations. And unlike Karen Carpenter's saccharine song, this hush is not intended to make room for the sound of lovers in love. It’s a hush of inhibition, the silence of the skeptics who have known too many past disappointments.

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Press Release: APN Lambasts New Planned Settlement Construction

As the Obama administration prepares to kick its efforts to broker Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations into higher gear, the government of Israel is advancing plans to build 2,372 new housing units in West Bank settlements.

News of this new round of settlement construction plans was publicized yesterday by Americans for Peace Now's Israeli sister-organization, Shalom Achshav (Peace Now).

Americans for Peace Now joins Shalom Achshav in condemning the new plans for construction in settlements, many of which are east of the "Separation Barrier," in areas that are almost certain to come under Palestinian sovereignty when a two-state peace agreement is achieved.

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APN Press Release: APN Mourns the Death of Ambassador Samuel Lewis

Americans for Peace Now (APN) mourns the death of Ambassador Samuel Lewis, a distinguished American diplomat and a leading expert on US Middle East policy, a staunch supporter of Arab-Israeli peace, a true friend of Israel and an influential activist for Israeli-Palestinian peace.

APN's President and CEO Debra DeLee said: "Sam's passing is a terrible loss to the peace movement and to those who knew him and deeply appreciated him as a human being. He was a man with a big intellect and a big heart, whose pro-peace positions were guided by a moral compass and by a deep commitment to the national security of the United States and to the wellbeing of the state of Israel.

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Press Release: APN to Netanyahu: Don't Establish a New Settlement in Hebron

In response to today's ruling by Israel's High Court of Justice (Supreme Court) regarding settler claims to ownership of a large house in Hebron, Americans for Peace Now (APN) joins its Israeli sister organization Shalom Achshav (Peace Now) in calling on Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his Minister of Defense Moshe Ya'alon to use their legal authority to prevent the creation of another settlement stronghold in Hebron.

The Supreme Court today rejected an appeal by two Palestinians of a lower court ruling that the property was bought legally by Jewish settlers. Following the Supreme Court ruling, the settlers could move into the house, if the Minister of Defense approves it.

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APN's Ori Nir in Haaretz: When will the U.S. Jewish community talk peace?

How will the U.S. Jewish establishment, such as AIPAC, confront the prospect of peace for Israel when it is mired in an echo chamber of self-righteous axioms and simplistic thinking?

At the entrance to the enormous hall at the Washington Convention Center, where some 14,000 chairs were lined up for AIPAC’s conference participants, stood a television reporter holding a microphone, seeking interviewees.

"How’s it going?" I asked. “Not so good,” he replied. “I was sent to do a story on what AIPAC members have to say about prospects for Israeli-Palestinian peace and nobody is willing to talk about it. All they want to talk about is Iran.”

He was right. Hard-line statements on Iran elicited long standing ovations, time after time, while hopeful comments on the possibility of peace were all but ignored. It got so bad that two prominent Israelis – Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and legendary Israeli high-tech entrepreneur Yossi Vardi – had to urge the armada of pro-Israel lobbyists to applaud comments they made about peace. And when Howard Kohr, AIPAC’s executive director of eighteen years, addressed the crowd with a speech that typically sets the policy agenda for the conference, all he spoke about was Iran.

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President Obama and Prime Minister Netanyahu Meet in the White House

Netanyahu-Obama-March-2012-largeProspects for the success of Israeli-Palestinian negotiations were downplayed by Prime Minister Netanyahu at his photo-op with President Obama following their meeting today. Here is what Netanyahu had to say about efforts to achieve peace with the Palestinians:

  • “Twenty years of peace process were marked by many Israeli steps for peace but we got suicide bombers and rockets in return.”
  • “It’s about time the Palestinians recognize Israel as a Jewish state – we have only been there for 4,000 years.”
  • “The people of Israel expect me to stand strong against pressure and for the security of Israel.”
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Press Release: Settlement Surge Looms Large over Netanyahu-Obama Meeting

As Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu landed in Washington today, the Israeli government’s Central Bureau of Statistics issued a report showing a whopping 123% surge in West Bank settlement construction in 2013, more than double the number of new settlement homes built in 2012.

The data was analyzed and highlighted today by Israel’s Peace Now (Shalom Achshav) movement. It confirms past interim reports by Peace Now’s Settlement Watch Project. Americans for Peace Now (APN), Shalom Achshav’s US sister-organization, joins Peace Now in condemning Netanyahu’s government for this reckless policy of settlement construction.

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Press Release: APN Applauds House Letter Supporting Diplomacy with Iran

Washington, DC – Americans for Peace Now (APN) thanks the 104 members of the House of Representatives, Republicans and Democrats, who today sent a letter to President Obama supporting the current diplomatic efforts to resolve concerns over Iran's nuclear program.

APN strongly supported the letter and urged House members to sign it.

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