News Nosh 8.2.17

APN's daily news review from Israel
Wednesday, August 2, 2017
 
Quote of the Day #1:
"Once a year, on a prescribed date, they suddenly weep over “baseless hatred.” They recite poetry, they philosophize and write columns. For the rest of the time the pillar of fire that goes before the camp is back, to sow hatred – against Arabs, the left, human rights groups, the media, the High Court of Justice, and recently even the heads of the security services – and the rest toe the line or remain silent.”
—Haaretz journalist Uri Misgav laments the religious-nationalist right-wing's annual 'crying game' on Tisha B'Av.*

Quote of the Day #2:
“It's easy for policy makers to look at [the study’s results] and say, we can coast because the public isn’t demanding that we move ahead on this. But if they were to show political leadership, if they had vision, they could get the public to support them.”
--Pollster and analyst, Dr. Dahlia Scheindlin, explained that a drop in support for a two-state solution can be changed.*

Front Page:
Haaretz
Yedioth Ahronoth
  • Ari Harow on the way to a state witness agreement
  • The actress fell from the fourth floor
  • “He took my baby and disappeared” - Part 2 of the investigation of baby kidnapping (and trafficking)
Maariv This Week (Hebrew links only)
Israel Hayom

News Summary:
Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's former chief of staff Ari Harow is in talks to become a state witness in two cases where Netanyahu is suspected of corruption and US President Donald Trump’s advisor and son-in-law, Jared Kushner, got in hot water after his off-the-record statements were publicized - making top stories in today’s Hebrew newspapers. Also, the latest in diplomacy and a poll about peace.

Ari Harow, a key Netanyahu confidant who served two terms in key positions in the Prime Minister’s Office, is himself suspected of bribery, breach of trust, conflict of interest and fraudulently obtaining benefits. Harow likely could provide police with information about Netanyahu in two cases: Case 1000 on the prime minister's ties with wealthy donors and Case 2000 over a possible deal between Netanyahu and Yedioth publisher Arnon Mozes.

Trump's Middle East peace advisor Jared Kushner was  recorded saying that peace may not be possible between Israelis and Palestinians, that it was ‘reasonable’ for Israel to put metal detectors on the Temple Mount and described the incident in which two Jordanian citizens were killed by an Israeli security guard in a residence used by the Israeli embassy in Amman, in a way that completely contradicts Jordan's official account of the event.

Meanwhile, China's UN ambassador appealed to the international community to support President Xi's plan to end the Israel-Palestinian conflict and establish an independent Palestinian state, Chief Palestinian negotiator, Saeb Erekat, blasted the Trump administration's silence on Israeli settlement construction. saying that Israel was interpreting it as carte blanche to abandon the two-state solution and advance an apartheid regime and Haaretz+ reported that a new aide was named as Trump envoy's deputy, signaling interest in beefing up Mideast peace efforts.

**According to a new poll, some 53% of Israelis and 52% of Palestinians support a two-state solution, down significantly from the 71% of Israelis and 57% of the Palestinians who supported the idea in 2010. A larger number, 71% of Palestinians and 72% of Israelis, think a Palestinian state will not be created in the next five years. But the lead researchers in the study for the Tami Steinmetz Center for Research at Tel-Aviv University, Dr. Dahlia Scheindlin and Dr. Khalil Shikaki, found that incentives and trust-building could have a dramatic effect on public opinion. “It is easy for policy makers to look at [the study’s results] and say, we can coast because the public isn’t demanding that we move ahead on this. But if they were to show political leadership, if they had vision, they could get the public to support them,” said Scheindlin. Moreover, presented with options between a two-state solution, a one-state solution with equal rights for all citizens, a one-state solution without equal rights, or the expulsion of either Israelis or Palestinians from the land, a majority of both peoples opted for a two-state solution. (Also Maariv)
 
Quick Hits:
  • More than one thousand Jews visit Temple Mount on Tisha B'Av, setting new record - Activists encouraged Jews to visit the site on Tisha B'Av following the recent tensions in the last two weeks; nine Jews removed from site for attempting to pray contrary to status-quo rules and five Jews  arrested for various charges, including assaulting Israeli police officers. (Haaretz, Maan and Ynet)
  • Jordan furious over Jewish visits to Temple Mount: "Extremists are storming the site" - During a meeting of Foreign Ministers of the Arab League, the Jordanian foreign minister attacked the many Jewish worshipers who arrived at the compound: "This number has not been recorded since the occupation (began) in 1967.” (Maarivand Israel Hayom)
  • Israel's Chief Sephardi Rabbi Rebukes Jews Who Visited Temple Mount on Tisha B'Av -  'Those Jews who ascend to the Temple Mount desecrate its sanctity,' Chief Rabbi Yitzhak Yosef said Tuesday. (Haaretz)
  • Waqf officially forms committees to assess any Israeli damages on Al-Aqsa - The Islamic Endowment, or Waqf -- in charge of running Al-Aqsa Mosque compound -- has formed four committees to officially assess any damage caused to the properties of the premises by Israeli forces following recent unrest around the holy site. (Maan)
  • Ex-mufti's latest libel: Israel planted spying devices at Al-Aqsa - "Tiles were removed and reinstalled inside the mosque and in the offices around Al-Aqsa. We know what is hiding beneath the tiles," says former Grand Mufti of Jerusalem Sheikh Ekrima Sa'id Sabri • He calls on Islamic world to unite against Israel. (Israel Hayom)
  • Life in the Old City returning to 'normal'- After two weeks of riots and constant tension, tourists are beginning to return and local store owners, both Arab and Jewish, are reopening their doors in one of the most contested sites in the world. (Ynet)
  • Greek Patriarch vows to fight Israeli court's approval of Sale of Three Strategic E. J'lem Buildings to Right-wing Jewish Group - The Greek Orthodox Church is denouncing an Israeli court decision which found that the sale of prime church property to Jewish-Israeli developers was done legally by the previous patriarch, who was deposed. (Agencies, Ynet and Haaretz and Israel Hayom)
  • Palestinians oppose the transfer of (Jerusalem Old City) buildings to Ateret Cohanim: "Zionist court" - Arab media outlets referred to Maariv's publication of a court decision according to which the organization owns buildings in East Jerusalem. "These are rights sold by an unauthorized person to an unauthorized party.” (Maariv)
  • Settlers drop High Court petition for fear of enforcement of planning laws - In response to the petition, the attorney general had demanded the establishment of units to enforce building laws throughout the West Bank, causing the petitioners to think twice. (Haaretz+)
  • Israeli forces evacuate Hebron home turned into military post - Israeli forces evacuated a Palestinian house in the southern occupied West Bank city of Hebron on Sunday after reportedly using it as a military outpost for a week. (Maan)
  • Samaria Council head moves into Machpelah House - Yossi Dagan and his family join the 120 settlers barricaded in the Hebron structure in protest of lagging purchasing process; 'The house was paid for in full and completely legally while we're being strung along with quasi-legal excuses. It's all just politics,' he says. (Ynet)
  • Jordan MP challenges firebrand Israeli MK to a duel - MK Oren Hazan responds that he’ll be at Allenby Bridge border crossing at 10 a.m. to make MP Yahya Al-Saud ‘an offer he can’t refuse.’ (Times of Israel)
  • Israel issues administrative detention orders against 47 Palestinians, 1 lawmaker - Among the 47 Palestinians that received administrative detention orders -- the Israeli policy of internment without charge or trial -- was Hamas-affiliated lawmaker Hassan Yousif. (Maan)
  • Israeli forces continue 2-week closure of Qalqiliya-area village - Israeli forces continued to uphold a closure on the village of Azzun Atma in the northern occupied West Bank district of Qalqiliya for the second consecutive week. (Maan)
  • Israel demolishes Palestinian Bedouin village for 116th time - Officials from the Israel Land Authority (ILA), accompanied by Israeli police and bulldozers, raided the village and demolished all the tin homes in the area, which were built by the village’s residents following the most recent demolition in early July. (Maan)
  • Israeli Submarine Scandal: Court Imposes Gag Order on Testimony of State Witness Ganor - Former deputy national security advisor who was close to Ganor asked the Israeli ambassador in Germany to meet with him, saying he had lots of jobs to offer. (Haaretz and Ynet)
  • Ganor testimony to draw out submarine investigation by 'weeks' - Sources in law enforcement claim that testimony from Miki Ganor will require 'many more weeks of investigation' by authorities and will even involve international investigators. (Yedioth/Ynet)
  • The Israeli Submarine Scandal: What We Know - Netanyahu is taking on water as a potential conflict of interest scandal surrounding submarine purchase from German company grows. (Haaretz)
  • Israel Police to Grill Sara Netanyahu for Fourth Time Over Alleged Misuse of Funds - Benjamin Netanyahu's wife is expected to be indicted for fraudulent misuse of government funds. (Haaretz)
  • Yair Netanyahu slams leftist group for scathing Facebook post - PM’s son berated for living off his parents at taxpayer’s expense; group threatens libel suit over angry online response. (Times of Israel)
  • Arab leaders slam Joint List party infighting, warn rift could impact election - Parties within the Arab-majority list are endangering Arab unity for personal, technical and financial reasons, say critics. (Haaretz+)
  • Waze Consults Israeli Army to Prevent Misdirected Drivers in West Bank - In addition to updates to the navigation app, speed bumps have been added in confusing spots to get drivers to pay more attention to their surroundings. (Haaretz)
  • Jews of crumbling Venezuela trying to stay optimistic - In a country on the brink of becoming a dictatorship and whose second-in-command is a vocal opponent of Israel and the West, members of the shrinking Jewish community say they're still "living in a bubble." For now. (Israel Hayom)
  • 26 Venezuelan Jews immigrate to Israel fleeing dramatic social unrest - 'It's hard to get basic things like bread and flour' in Venezuela, says one mother of three upon her arrival in Israel. (Haaretz)
  • Labor Party of Australia's most populous state votes to recognize Palestinian state - The New South Wales party's resolution is a watered-down version of the original proposed by ex-Foreign Minister Bob Carr, but pressure is increased on the federal Labor leader to come down on the issue. (JTA, Haaretz)
  • Star of David Still In, but Israeli Flags Now Out at Chicago SlutWalk - 'Leave symbols of nationalism and oppression at home,' group now tells participants, while reiterating agreement to displays of faith, rejection of anti-Semitism and Islamophobia. (Haaretz)
  • Tillerson Admits He Disagrees With Trump Over Iran Nuclear Deal - Although Trump made clear his skepticism of the Iran deal, he reluctantly preserved the agreement as a result of Tillerson's advice. (Haaretz)
  • Jordanian parliament repeals 'marry the rapist' clause - Jordanian lawmakers abolish a law that lets rapists off the hook if they marry their victims; rights groups now hope Lebanon, which is discussing amending or abolishing a similar provision, will follow Jordan's lead. (Agencies, Ynet)
  • Muslim clerics dispense religious rulings in Cairo's subway - Need advice on whom to marry or whether to start a grocery store but don't want to sit on hold for a religious hotline? Take a train. (Agencies, Haaretz)
  • Iranian hackers launch virtual honeypot scheme - Iranian hacker group Cobalt Gypsy creates fake profile of beautiful, London-educated photography enthusiast named Mia Ash to hack employees in security-sensitive Middle Eastern companies to steal sensitive information. (Ynet)
  • First German city set to pass anti-BDS bill - Munich lawmakers declare boycott movement antisemitic. (Maariv/JPost)
  • George and Amal Clooney help 3,000 Syrian children go to school in Lebanon- The $3.25 million donation, in conjunction with Google and HP, will help to open seven schools in Lebanon for refugee children. (Agencies, Haaretz)

 
Commentary/Analysis:
The Palestinians Won the 2017 Battle for Temple Mount. That’s Good for Israel (Paul Scham, Haaretz+) Palestinians - and many Israelis - regard their victory in Jerusalem as Israel's capitulation. This is why that's a rare win for peace, and for Israel.
How are security decisions made in Israel? (Giora Eiland, Yedioth/Ynet) Who said the range of possibilities in the Temple Mount crisis was between placing metal detectors or not? There may have been other alternatives, like using the 48 hours the site was closed to reach an acceptable formula with Jordan and avoid having 1.3 billion Muslims against us.
Keep Israel's State Archives Away From the Government (Haaretz Editorial) If the law is followed to the letter, every examination of a document in the State Archives would need the approval of the agency that deposited it there. There’s no need to elaborate on why this is problematic.
Power to the people: Why Palestinian victory in Jerusalem is a pivotal moment(Ramzy Baroud, Maan) In this latest confrontation, Palestinians of Jerusalem won, presenting an impressive model of mobilization and popular solidarity for all Palestinians. The Israeli army removed the barricades and the metal detectors, pushing Israel to the brink of a political crisis involving angry politicians, the army and internal intelligence, the Shin Bet.
Political Support for Hebron Shooter Implicates Israel in War Crimes (Chemi Shalev, Haaretz+) Those who consistently blame the left for defaming Israel tolerate and even endorse extra-judicial killings.
A perilous situation (Prof. Eyal Zisser, Israel Hayom) Iran's and Turkey's attempts to fan the flames on the Temple Mount are mainly dangerous to the Palestinians themselves, as well as to Israeli Arabs.
When will all this hatred between us end?  (Hanoch Daum, Yedioth/Ynet) While I have no yearning for the Temple, I feel the unfounded hatred that preceded its destruction on a daily basis, and it’s growing, deepening its hold on our discourse, and every side in Israeli society shares an equal part in the blame for it.
*The Crying Game of Tisha B’Av (Uri Misgav, Haaretz+) Once a year the national-religious right suddenly weeps about ‘baseless hatred’; the rest of the year they’re sowing hatred against Arabs, the left, human rights groups, the media, the High Court of Justice, and recently even the heads of the security services.
The memory that commands us to live (Dror Eydar, Israel Hayom) Today, on Tisha B'Av, we mourn the destruction of the Temples, but we should also remember that we are commanded to live and build in Jerusalem.
Arab lives matter: How a police killing in Jaffa could spark a movement (Daniel Monterescu, Haaretz+) Mass demonstrations in Jaffa following Israel Police’s killing of an unarmed Arab man resemble Black Lives Matter resistance to police brutality and discrimination throughout the U.S.
Trump's Foreign Policy Chaos Is Putting Israel at Risk, but U.S. Jews Are in Denial(Eric H. Yoffie, Haaretz+) Some U.S. foreign policy theorists contend Trump's catastrophic foreign policy mess constitutes a coherent 'doctrine'. And too many American Jews, on Israel at least, are joining in the delusion.
Netanyahu Jr. Refuses to Pick Up Dog Poop, Then Claws at His Critics (Uri Misgav, Haaretz) 25-year-old Yair Netanyahu responds to bad press with scathing attacks on the New Israel Fund and sons of former Israeli prime ministers.
The day after Abbas (Dr. Moshe Elad, Israel Hayom) The ailing and weary PA president appears closer than ever to stepping down prompting rampant speculation. Whatever happens, Israel should prepare for a period of upheaval.
The Mantra of 'United' Jerusalem Is a Macabre Joke (Amira Hass, Haaretz+) If Beit Hanina and Sur Baher interest Jews, it's because they have unused land that can still be stolen from the Palestinians to build a Zionist fortress.
 
Prepared for APN by Orly Halpern, independent freelance journalist based in Jerusalem.
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