News Nosh 01.20.17

APN's daily news review from Israel
Friday January 20, 2017  
Quote of the day:
"Superhuman self-discipline is the order of the day."
--Haaretz+ political commentator, Yossi Verter, writes that frustrated Likud ministers see there is now a possibility of moving up the party ladder, due to the investigations into their party leader, but they cannot say anything that would imply disloyalty toward Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu while he fights for his political life because they will immediately be denounced as traitors. 

You Must Be Kidding: 
The man who heads the Finance Ministry department that enforces planning and construction laws lives in an illegal West Bank settlement outpost.
 --Avi Cohen is that man: a settler who lives in Palgei Mayim, an outpost of the Eli settlement.**

Front Page:
Yedioth Ahronoth
  • The Trump era
  • Good luck, Mr. President // Eitan Haber
  • Cancerous growth removed from IDF Chief of Staff’s body
  • Justice Minister initiating: Limiting term of Prime Minister in exchange for postponing investigations
Maariv Weekend (Hebrew links only)
  • The Trump era
  • Time for new ideas // Gideon Saar 
  • Cancerous growth removed from Chief of Staff
  • Last honor – Thousands of Israelis fulfilled the request of the mother of Sgt. VIazsalav Gregory and attended his funeral. He was killed Monday while doing maintenance on an APC
  • Cabinet approved the arrangement for defense from suits against Israeli banks that work with Palestinians
  • The investigations effect – Only 26% believe that “there will be nothing because there was nothing” [Netanyahu said about investigations]; Yesh Atid party continues to lead in the mandates
  • The rule-fortune-newspaper affair – State Prosecutor: “There is a difference between evidence for investigation and evidence for an indictment”
  • Hassan Beck: Hezbollah’s updated targets bank has been exposed
  • The Jerusalem question: What do the ’67 liberators think about the attack in 2017?
  • You just wait: The professor decided that Yair Netanyahu is the next thing // Liora – the gossip section
Israel Hayom

News Summary:
The beginning of the Trump era, the removal of a cancerous tumor from the IDF Chief of Staff and the latest on the Netanyahu investigations were today’s top stories in the Hebrew newspapers. Also in the news, Channel 2 revealed that in the deadly incident in the Bedouin village of Um al-Hiran this week, police officers testified that they did shoot first at the car of the Bedouin man before it rammed into a police officer, in contrast to police statements otherwise; his family is demanding an investigation. And the military prosecution wants convicted soldier Sgt. Elor Azariya to serve 3-5 years in prison.
Yedioth’s Orly Azoulay on the Trump era:
“Today a President who made history will leave the White House and in his stead will enter a President who made a completely different kind of history. The intellectual charisma of Barack Obama will be replaced by the confidence and aggressiveness of Donald Trump, the light and effortless style will be replaced by a short fuse and a big mouth.”

On the Netanyahu investigations:
Haaretz+’s Yossi Verter writes that “The political arena is in the meantime gearing up for elections next September-October. The prevailing view is that a decision about whether to indict the premier will be made in May-June, the Knesset will be dissolved and elections held about 100 days later. That’s the working assumption of three coalition party leaders who regularly exchange views.” Also, the State Attorney will decide whether to launch a probe against Mossad director Yossi Cohen for receiving illicit gifts from Australian billionaire James Packer. Haaretz+’s Amir Oren writes that as “Yossi Cohen's ties to Netanyahu's rich friends come to light, shadows lengthen over the night he was tapped to lead Israel's spy agency. If a link could be established, Israel may see both its prime minister and its Mossad chief gone in one fell swoop.
And on Netanyahu’s son, Yair, Yedioth’s Nahum Barnea writes that the claim by Netanyahu’s PR people that the gifts that Netanyahu and his family received “were between friends” and were reciprocated is ridiculous. “(Arnon) Milchan and (Australian tycoon James) Packer don’t make visits (to the PM). And when the supply of cigars and champagne empties, whoever needs to make a call to whoever needs to be called, a new monthly order is made, the driver of the giver or the receiver makes the transfer, and the bill is written accordingly.” Barnea writes that Israelis are not so stupid to believe Netanyahu’s son, Yair, who testified before police this week that his father has no connection to his own friendship with Packer and that his father had no idea that the Australian tycoon is funding Yair with first class flights, yacht trips, living in his luxury apartment, and enormous plates of sushi delivered to the office of the IDF Spokesman’s Unit, while Yair served there, among other things. “The claim that the gifts were given without getting in return is ridiculous,” writes Barnea. “Even billionaires don’t give presents in those amounts. And the absurd is that statement that Netanyahu did not know about the gifts to his son. Who is the idiot who would shower on Yair all that good without his father – and more importantly his mother – knowing.”
A Maariv survey found that 57% of the public believe there is a basis to the suspicions against Netanyahu. Only 28% believe Netanyahu that there is nothing behind them. Yesh Atid party is leading with 26 mandates if elections were held now and Likud trails with 23. The Labor party would get only 9, but if it were led by former IDF chief of staff Gabi Ashkenazi it would get 15 seats. 
Prepared for APN by Orly Halpern, independent freelance journalist based in Jerusalem.

APN board member Mik Moore in Medium: Freedom Riders In Israel

Israel is innovating new products that will help the developing world and isolated areas gain access to fresh produce and water, sustainable energy, and inexpensive traditional housing.

Israel is innovating new ways to deny millions of people basic civil rights; subjecting them to regular violence and intimidation, undermining their ability to be economically self sufficient, and preventing them from building housing, schools, and other necessities.

Over Christmas break I spent two weeks in Israel with my wife and our kids, aged 13 and 9. It was my eighth visit and their first. We saw both of these Israels, up close and personal.

It is not shocking to learn that a country contains multitudes. The good and the bad often exist side by side, each an authentic representation of a nation’s values. It is true in the United States. It is true in France. It is true in Israel.

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APN Update: The Inaugural, Alpher vs. Stephens, meet Avi Buskila, our latest Pod-Cast, and more

Americans for Peace Now
Americans for Peace Now: January 19, 2017

"Settlements are creating a reality on the ground that increasingly will make a two-state solution impossible."

President Barack Obama, during his final press conference as President, January 18, 2017

Hard Questions, Tough Answers with Yossi Alpher


Yossi Alpher is an independent security analyst. Views and positions expressed here are those of the writer, and do not necessarily represent APN's views and policy positions.

January 17, 2017 - The four most recent treatments of the Israel-Palestine issue; Netanyahu’s legal troubles

Q. The past week or so has witnessed the publication of four new or renewed treatments of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and ways to deal with it. Can you address them? Let’s start with Stephens...

A.Stephens, a former editor of the Jerusalem Post who is identified with the Israeli right, offers a basket of arguments against a Palestinian state...

Q. On to the Eizenstat-Ross “Plan B”.

A. Eizenstat and Ross recognize that a two-state solution is not currently possible, but they have a proposal for interim measures...

Q. Did the Paris Conference indeed save the two-state solution?

A. The 70 countries’ senior representatives who met in Paris certainly registered their anguish over the direction Israel and Palestine are moving...

Q. Finally, the “Commanders”, some 250 retired generals and heads of Israel’s security community, published a provocative ad in the Israeli press and on billboards. It states, in Arabic, “We’ll soon be the majority” and sends the public to a recorded message. Any hope here?

A. ...The current provocative ad is an attempt to jolt the public into understanding, as the Commanders’ phone message states, that 2.5 million West Bank Palestinians will not disappear....

Q. Granted that little of this overly concerns PM Netanyahu, who eagerly awaits a friendly Trump administration. But how do you address the current corruption investigation against him? Could this be the end of his leadership tenure? And if so, what could this mean for the Palestinian issue?

A. ...we are confronted with hard evidence of what appear to be serious offenses...

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Government Relations

APN Legislative Round-Up: January 13, 2017

  1. Bills and Resolutions Related to the Recent UNSC settlements Resolution/Obama Abstention
  2. Hill Initiatives Related to Moving the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem
  3. Bills and Resolutions Related to Cutting Off UN Funding
  4. Bills and Resolutions Related Iran
  5. Bills and Resolutions Related to Other Things
  6. Confirmation Hearings - Key Excerpts
  7. On the Record

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APN Statement on The Inauguration of President Trump

APN's statement to be released on Friday morning begins with: Under normal circumstances, Americans for Peace Now (APN) would today be welcoming the inauguration of the new U.S. president, wishing him success and urging him to take action toward peace between Israel and her neighbors. Today’s circumstances are not normal.

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Shalom Achshav Executive Director visits Washington

Avi Buskila,Shalom Achshav’s executive director, met with administration officials, policy experts, APN supporters and activists, representatives of fellow pro-peace organizations, journalists, as well as a group of Israelis living in the Washington area.

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APN Audio

APN PeaceCast, Episode #3, "The 50-Year Tipping Point" featuring Oded Haklai

Canadian-Israeli scholar Oded Haklai talks about his recent poll that found the occupation-ignorance tipping point among Israelis is the age of 50, exactly the length of the occupation.

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Go HERE for the PeaceCast home page that has links to all available episodes, and subscribe to PeaceCast through the podcast app on your smartphone/device.

In The News

APN's News Nosh brings the Israeli headlines to you

From today's News Nosh: ...outgoing US President Barack Obama said, “I continue to be worried about the Israeli-Palestinian issue because the status quo is unsustainable,” while President-elect Donald Trump told Israel Hayom he will move the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem, "and I'm not a person who breaks promises,".

APN's News Nosh will be an informative resource on the impact of the Trump Presidency on Israel-related issues..

Go HERE for the daily News Nosh feed, and to subcribe to receive it as an email.

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News Nosh 01.19.17

APN's daily news review from Israel
Thursday January 19, 2017  
Quote of the Day #1:
"I'd run over a cop, too, if they were forcing me out of my home to build a community for people better off than me." 
--Army Radio reporter Khen Elmaleh wrote on her personal Facebook page - and was fired.*
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APN Statement: The Inauguration of President Trump

This statement will be sent out to the media on Friday morning, shortly before inauguration:

Under normal circumstances, Americans for Peace Now (APN) would today be welcoming the inauguration of the new U.S. president, wishing him success and urging him to take action toward peace between Israel and her neighbors. Today’s circumstances are not normal.

Donald Trump, both as a candidate and as President-elect, has said that he would like to broker the “ultimate deal” between Israelis and Palestinians. But this potentially encouraging sentiment has been overshadowed – trumped, as it were – by a series of alarming actions and statements that send a very different message.

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News Nosh 01.18.17

APN's daily news review from Israel
Wednesday January 18, 2017

Breaking News:
Several Jewish community centers across the US have been evacuated following "near-simultaneous" bomb threats. Threats were reported in Miami, Florida, Birmingham, Alabama, West Hartford, Connecticut and Nashville, Tennessee. This comes just nine days after a similar incident targeted 16 other Jewish institutions on the east coast (Haaretz).
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Bad Ideas, Dangerous Implications for US & Israel

Oppose Moving the Embassy to Jerusalem

US_embassy_Tel_Aviv_320x265Lara Friedman in the Huffington Post 1/6/17: Think Trump’s Policies On Israel-Palestine Have Nothing To Do With You? Think Again

APN on Jerusalem, the embassy, and more: They Say, We Say 

Danny Seidemann 1/6/17: Moving the U.S. Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem: A Hard Look at the Arguments & Implications
Dalia Dassa Kaye, Rand Corporation, 12/28/16: Hidden Dangers of Moving the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem

Times of Israel Jordan 1/6/17: Moving US Embassy to Jerusalem is a ‘red line’

Gershom Gorenberg in the American Prospect, 1/11/17: Capital Offense

Haaretz 1/9/17: Why the Latest Palestinian Attacker in Jerusalem Was Not Deterred

Latest podcast: #3 The 50-Year Tipping Point: Interview with Oded Haklai

A large majority of Israelis were born into a situation in which their country is occupying the West Bank, Gaza Strip and East Jerusalem. A new poll shows that many Israelis don’t know the basics of that situation – for example, that Israel has never annexed the West Bank, or that settlements like Ariel and Maale Adomim are not under Israeli sovereignty. Oded Haklai, a Canadian-Israeli scholar who conducted the poll demonstrates how the occupation-ignorance tipping point among Israelis is the age of 50, and explains why.


Listen to the podcast here.


Yossi Alpher is an independent security analyst. He is the former director of the Jaffee Center for Strategic Studies at Tel Aviv University, a former senior official with the Mossad, and a former IDF intelligence officer. Views and positions expressed here are those of the writer, and do not necessarily represent APN's views and policy positions.

This week, Alpher discusses four new or renewed treatments of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and ways to deal with it; the Bret Stephens’ January 9 Wall Street Journal argument against a Palestinian state solution; Dennis Ross' and Stuart Eizenstat's “Plan B”; the Paris Peace Conference; and the “Commanders'” provocative ad in the Israeli press and on billboards stating, in Arabic, “We’ll soon be the majority”; and the current corruption investigation against Netanyahu and what it could mean for the Palestinian issue; how you address the current corruption investigation against him and what could this mean for the Palestinian issue.

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