--Former defense minister Moshe Yaalon said on Wednesday, the day marking 22 years since former prime minister Yitzhak Rabin's assassination.*
You Must Be Kidding:
Birthright, the organization that brings young Jewish adults on free, 10-day visits to Israel, has instructed its trip providers to stop including meetings with Israeli Arabs on their itineraries.**
- Hamas transferred the crossings in Gaza to the Palestinian Authority
- Yuval Rabin at Mt. Herzl: The incitement mechanism is still striking us
- Syria: Israel attacked in our land; Reports of anti-aircraft shooting in response
- The ramming attack in NY struck the symbol of its recovery from 11/9, Trump and his supporters were quick to find a scapegoat // Chemi Shalev
- Through Jordan, with a Palestinian transit ID: Hundreds of Israelis visited Lebanon as tourists
- Birthright organization decided to stop holding meetings between trip participants in Israel and Arabs
- Tel-Aviv Municipality begins fining bicyclists and scooter riders who ride on sidewalks
- Let Balfour be // Haaretz Editorial
- (Former defense minister) Yaalon promised (Finance Minister) Kahlon transparency in the security establishment, (Defense Minister) Lieberman is not rushing to fulfill // Sami Peretz
- Southern front - “Guillotine for tunnels”
- Northern front - “IDF attacked arms warehouse in Syria”
- Couple to be compensated: They were kicked out of a rental bungalow because they are (a mixed couple) Arab and Jewish
- Exclusive interview: Jewish, homosexual, and Nazi - The crazy story of the neo-Nazi leader who discovered his Jewish roots and now asks to visit Israel and to apologize to Holocaust survivors
- Report: Syrian Army shot anti-aircraft missiles at Israel Air Force jets
- Trump’s answer to terror: “I will act to stop the visa lottery”
- 22 years since the murder of Yitzhak Rabin: “It’s time to stop the incitement” - Yuval Rabin, his son, said at memorial
- High alert: Tension in the south and in the north - Report: Israel attacked in Syria
- Remembering Rabin: “Call for reconciliation”
- (Restoring) Balance to (Rabin's) square // Former chief of staff Lt. Gen. (ret.) Beni Gantz
At a memorial for assassinated prime minister Yitzhak Rabin, his son, Yuval, accused the government of silencing its opponents, while Prime Minister BInyamin Netanyahu called for reconciliation, (note: Israel Hayom emphasized Netanyahu’s speech, while other papers emphasized Yuval Rabin’s), the Syrian Army shot at Israeli Air Force jets after the Israeli jets attacked an arms warehouse in Syria, according to Lebanese media, while tension continued in the south as Palestinian Islamic Jihad continued rescue efforts to find five militants who went missing when Israel demolished a tunnel earlier this week and Israel worried if and how PIJ would retaliate, making top stories in today's Hebrew newspapers.
Meanwhile, Hamas handed to the Palestinian Authority control over Gaza crossings, sealing the Fatah-Hamas reconciliation process (Israel informed the PA it would not allow Hamas to be part of new security arrangements) and Netanyahu took off for Britain to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Balfour Declaration - and told Palestinians they shouldn’t despair over it. But in Bethlehem, Palestinians made an anti-Balfour Declaration reenactment and marched in protest and Israeli soldiers clashed with them.
- A billboard with the photos of Rabbi Kahane and Bentzi Gopstein were removed from the entrance to Jerusalem - In light of protests by many residents of Jerusalem, the Jerusalem Municipality decided to remove a sign posted on a hotel at the entrance to the city that showed the faces of Kahane, [the founder of a Jewish terror organization - OH], and of Gopstein, a radical right-wing activist and the founder of the [racist - OH] LEHAVA organization. The billboard invited the public to attend the memorial of Kahane on Tuesday. At the bottom of the sign, it read: "Benzi Gopstein, the people of Israel say to you thank you." (Maariv, p. 4 and MYnet)
- *Ya'alon: A political murder could happen at any moment - In an interview with Ynet, the former defense minister laments the 'divisive and inciting' leadership in Israel, criticizing Netanyahu for attacking 'everything that constitutes the checks and balances in a democracy' including the media and the Supreme Court. (Ynet)
- Yair Lapid's Party Poised to Double in Size as Netanyahu's Party Weakens, Latest Polls Show - The center-left and right-wing blocs are still running neck and neck in two new opinion polls. Polls indicate: The left-center has the option of forming a blocking bloc against a right-wing government. But the Arab ‘Joint List’ faction and Kahlon’s Kulanu party can bring about a turnover. (Haaretz and Maariv)
- Israeli settlers steal Palestinian olive harvest in Nablus area - Israeli settlers stole olives off 280 Palestinian-owned trees near Shavei Shomron settlement. They belonged to Salim Daoud Abu Safat (45 trees), Sabri Hamad Abu Safat (70 trees), Abd al-Jabbar Amin Mustafa (60 trees), Fahmi Marie (50 trees) and Bashir Salim (55 trees). (Maan)
- Tel Aviv rocket sirens stir panic: IDF says false alarm - Rocket sirens were heard in Tel Aviv and surrounding southern cities early Thursday morning. (Haaretz and Israel Hayom)
- Clashes erupt as hundreds of settlers pray at Nablus-area holy site - Dozens of Palestinians suffered from severe tear gas inhalation, while several others were injured with rubber-coated steel bullets, after clashes erupted between Palestinians and Israeli forces in Nablus, when hundreds of Israeli settlers raided Joseph’s Tomb under protection of Israeli army forces. (Maan)
- Israeli forces detain Palestinian journalist, teenage cousins in predawn raids - Israeli forces detained at least 21 Palestinians, including journalist Bushra al-Tawil, from across the occupied West Bank during predawn raids on Wednesday. (Maan)
- **Birthright Orders Trip Providers to End Meet-ups With Israeli Arabs - The sessions with Arabs, which began last summer, have been suspended for 'further analysis,' Birthright says. (Haaretz+)
- Reform Movement: Birthright's Halt on Meet-ups With Israeli Arabs Shows 'How Out of Touch' It's Become - Many Reform Jews 'are now questioning whether the 10-day trips are exposing participants to a too-narrow slice of contemporary Israel,' Rabbi Rick Jacobs says. (Haaretz+)
- Senior Shin-Bet officials accused of sexual harassment - A Shin-Bet employee, who is currently charged with embezzlement, filed a sexual harassment complaint against senior officials in the security agency. Her phone, which she says contains texts messages from the officials, was handed over to the Police Internal Investigations Department. (Maariv and JOL)
- Poll: 70% of Jewish Israelis want access to Temple Mount - Survey finds 64% of Jewish Israelis believe Israel should retain sovereignty over Jerusalem and its environs for national security reasons. Around 58% support Jerusalem's metropolitan boundaries including Gush Etzion and the Binyamin region. (Israel Hayom)
- WATCH Banksy Throws Balfour 'Apologetic' Party for Palestinians at His West Bank Hotel - The British street artist's message was centered around the ongoing impact of the declaration on the lives of Palestinians living under Israeli occupation. (Haaretz+VIDEO)
- Congress to vote on resolution supporting Balfour Declaration - 'Israel is one of our closest friends and allies, and it is important that we stand with her and honor this important milestone,' resolution proponent Senator Lankford said. (Haaretz)
- Israel refuses to confirm report it has ceased weapons sales to Myanmar following U.S. pressure - "I've studied the history of the Jewish people, what happened to you in the 1940's," one Rohingya activist told Haaretz, saying that an arms embargo must now be enacted. (Haaretz+)
- Bereaved families seek death penalty for terrorists - Group of 50 families urges Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked to promote bill allowing death penalty for terrorists, saying "clear action" is the only way to deter killers • Shaked's office says military law already allows death penalty for terrorists. (Israel Hayom)
- Hamas issues previously unseen footage of Gilad Schalit in captivity - Cpl. Gilad Schalit, held captive by Hamas in Gaza for five years after he was abducted in 2006, shown being given water by a Hamas operative. Schalit's father, Noam: Gilad and the rest of the family want to protect their privacy, return to normal life. (Israel Hayom and Ynet)
- Via Jordan, With a Palestinian ID: Hundreds of Israelis Are Flocking to Lebanon as Tourists - Mainly under the radar, the Galilee's Christian clergymen are organizing group tours to holy sites in Lebanon, a country with no diplomatic relations with Israel. (Haaretz+)
- Arab Israelis 'prominently involved' in serious crimes, study finds - Public security minister blames Arab MKs for not doing enough to combat crime • Arab Israelis implicated in over half of the murders, attempted murders, arsons in Israel, study finds. Number of Arab Muslim police officers almost doubles in 2017. (Israel Hayom)
- State set to end probe into former PM Olmert for disclosing classified information in upcoming biography - The state had argued that Olmert's lawyer had been caught leaving a prison visit to the former PM with manuscripts describing a still-classified security mission. (Haaretz+)
- Israeli drinking water at risk if pipeline for natgas by-product given the go-ahead - The planned route for an essential pipeline of condensate by-product from the Leviathan gas field is dangerously close to drinking water wells in the north of the country. (Haaretz+)
- Markups on 'healthy' foods by Israeli supermarkets are pushing consumers to junk, report finds - Israel's The Marker found that supermarket chains are charging up to 250% more for 'healthy' foods, despite similar manufacturing costs as their regular alternatives, and that this is having an adverse effect on consumer choices. (Haaretz+)
- Israel's Diaspora Affairs Ministry hires ex-JDC leader to soften its touch with U.S. Jews - Experts on Israeli-Diaspora relations observed that Israeli officials did not understand that American Jews would find the creation of an all-inclusive disturbing: 'They may speak English, but they don’t speak American’. (Haaretz+)
- Reform movement says it won't meet Netanyahu until he offers solution to Western Wall crisis - Jewish Federations chief warns: Controversy over prayer at Jewish holy site 'cascading' into college campuses. (Haaretz+)
- Automotive giant Hyundai to open R&D center in Israel - Hyundai official Youngcho Chi says South Korean car maker is keenly interested in Israeli automotive innovation, especially technology for self-driving cars. Economy Minister Eli Cohen: Decision is "more proof of the quality of Israeli innovation." (Israel Hayom)
- Trump's pick for top civil rights post under fire over efforts to crack down on BDS - Some say Marcus is 'a champion' for the civil rights of Jewish students on campus. But critics allege that by conflating criticism of Israel with anti-Semitism, Marcus stifles free speech. (Haaretz)
- Iran's hacking abilities constantly improving, IDF official says - The Israeli military faces thousands of cyberattacks a day and many are orchestrated by Iran or its proxies, says IDF cyber division head Maj. Gen. Nadav Padan. Padan: As far as we know, nobody has been able to penetrate our operational systems. (Israel Hayom)
- U.S. Forces Recover American Girl Taken to Syria by ISIS-supporting Dad - The pregnant minor is now in the hands of State Department officials in Iraq and is heading home, officials say. (Agencies, Haaretz)
- Iraq criminalizes waving of Israeli flag following Kurdish independence rallies - Iraq's parliament officially made flying Israel's flag in public spaces a criminal act. (Haaretz)
- Saudi-led air strike kills 21 people in Yemen, initial reports - A military alliance led by Saudi Arabia has launched thousands of air strikes against Yemen’s armed Houthi movement. (Agencies, Haaretz)
The Love Triangle That Changed the Course of Zionism
As the centennial of the Balfour Declaration approaches, it's fitting to look at the love affair at the very top of the British government whose dramatic end helped pave the way for the issuing of the historic declaration about a national homeland for the Jewish people. (Nathan Brun, Haaretz+)
In 1917, the British Foreign Secretary declared his support for the establishment of a national home in Palestine. What were the roots of the decision and why was it postponed? We went back to the back of the founding document. (Carmit Sapir Weitz, Maariv)
1930-2017 The Israeli who established the Shin Bet's intensive Arabic-language course
Born in pre-state Israel, Israel Haran was instrumental in salvaging huge quantities of documents from the British Mandate. (Ofer Aderet, Haaretz+)
Fight the right-wingers rewriting history: Rabin wanted a Palestinian state (Guy Ziv, Haaretz+) Opponents of a two-state solution assert loudly that Israel's assassinated premier contested the idea of Palestinian statehood. With the two-state solution on life support, we should end this dangerous fallacy.
The political assassination of a prime minister is a dramatic enough event for us all to adopt (commemorating) it (Anat Moshe, Maariv) We are all to blame for the fact that the murder of a prime minister in Israel has turned from a formative event into one that belongs to one camp. Because even though the assassination is political, Memorial Day should be state-sponsored.
Rivlin and Likud: The break-up (Sima Kadmon, Yedioth/Ynet) Likud members believe the president crossed a line in his unprecedented Knesset speech. Senior party members who supported Rivlin’s nomination for president were disappointed and even hurt by his words. Most of the people who applauded his speech didn’t vote for him, and most of those he blasted in his speech did.
Hamas' Silence After Israel's Gaza Tunnel Strike Shows Its Commitment to Maintaining Calm (Amos Harel, Haaretz+) Daily life in Gaza has become so oppressive, that Hamas needs to present the people with some kind of achievement.
Our failure: More than a generation has passed since Rabin's assassination - the lesson has not been internalized or studied (MK Yaakov Perry, Maariv) The wild and unbridled incitement we witnessed in the period leading up to the murder has returned and is knocking on our gates even harder. Israeli society is more divided, and the phenomena of racism and intolerance have grown immeasurably.
The national master of missed opportunities (Alex Fishman, Yedioth/Ynet) The Iranians, who studied the way the Israeli security echelon under Netanyahu handled the nuclear crisis at the beginning of the decade, have no reason to assume that anything has changed. As a result, they are showing no signs of panic over Israel's threats to drive them out of Syria.
Want to know how the settlement enterprise works? Follow the money (Ran Adelist, Maariv) The struggle for the fortification of the settlements in Judea and Samaria should be put in proportion: the West Bank is a parcel of territory (excluding the cities) that is monitored worldwide in terms of the number of soldiers. Never have so many defended so few.
Is there space for an anti-Zionist Israeli-Palestinian family in the U.S. Jewish community? (Mya Guarnieri Jaradat, Haaretz+) In America, as a Jewish-Muslim, pro-BDS couple we've tried to find our place with little success. But I didn't expect to feel nostalgic for the secular Jewish culture I was most comfortable with: a kind that's only found in Israel.
Fake Consensus: The Knesset stopped viewing incitement and the murder of Rabin as important (Shimon Sheves, Maariv) Instead of fighting the phenomenon of incitement, we are trying to unite the people around a false verbal consensus that does not even mention the term murder. Blurring the causes of murder does not lead to unity.
In praise of Jewish-Arab intermarriage (Ofri Ilany, Haaretz+) Imagine how different the attitude toward Arabs would be if tens of thousands of Jewish families in Israel had a Palestinian member.
We will decide what the legacy of Yitzhak Rabin will be (Shmuel Rosner, Maariv) Upon his death, the former prime minister fell silent. He does not have the power to tell the public which way he would choose to remember the murder. That is why we - who are alive - must determine the way in which it will be remembered.
The leader who took responsibility for everything (Eitan Haber, Yedioth/Ynet) The two decades that have passed since the prime minister’s murder have taken their toll on Yitzhak Rabin’s name. We’re ashamed, and we’re erasing almost everything that was done to a victim who made such a big contribution to Israel.
Sacred Sovereignty (Gideon Levy, Haaretz+) When Israeli soldiers shot dead an innocent driver and wounded his sister at Halamish junction on Tuesday, in the name of what sovereignty did they act?
Although not everyone will come to (Rabin) square (for the memorial), we will still be brothers (Nurit Canetti, Maariv) Instead of trying to blur the range of opinions and feelings among the Israeli public regarding the murder and the values associated with it, we must continue to remind where the conflict could take us.
Allowing Gaza-Egypt Border Crossings to Open, Israel Renders Its Blockade Useless (Zvi Bar'el, Haaretz+) Will Israel take advantage of political circumstances that forced Hamas to revisit its own policy? Or will it continue to only view Gaza through rifle sights.
Best-laid plans may go awry (Zalman Shoval, Israel Hayom) The recent spate of plans to address the untenable demographic and security situation in Jerusalem may be an attempt to pre-empt a U.S. proposal less favorable to Israel.
The Heavy Cost of Israel’s High-tech Success Story (Meirav Arlosoroff, Haaretz+) Why poverty is so rampant in Startup Nation: The nation has necome split into two parts that barely interact, and that’s leaving politics out of it.
BALFOUR DECLARATION RELATED Op-Eds:
Balfour set a pattern for the West’s ignorant interventions in the Middle East (Adam Roberts, Haaretz) Palestine can't 'belong to one nation’: That's what my grandfather would have told his friend Lord Balfour. But George Adam Smith's expert opinion wasn't sought - a harbinger of the under-informed Western policy-makers of our own day.
From the Balfour Declaration to the present day, the diplomats are the soldiers on the international front (Yuval Rotem, Maariv) The State of Israel has now become a leading and influential country in many fields, a country that is integrated into the international community and plays a leading and central role. Quite a few of its successes are a result of the activities of the Foreign Ministry.
100 Years of Balfour: Netanyahu Arrives in London at the Worst Time for Theresa May (Anshel Pfeffer, Haaretz+) Downing Street may not be an enthusiastic participant at the celebration in London this week, but Theresa May has enough of her own problems to consider ruining her Israeli counterpart's show.
The 100-year-old promise (Clifford D. May, Israel Hayom) It is too often forgotten or ignored that the Balfour Declaration, the British Empire's statement supporting the establishment of a national home for the Jewish people in Palestine, was endorsed by the international community in the League of Nations.
From Balfour to Two States (Haaretz Editorial) No event the PM holds with his British counterpart will bring the Palestinians to accept Israeli rule, and no Palestinian protest will lead to mass Jewish emigration from Israel.
On the 100th anniversary of the Balfour Declaration, give respect to the realization of national aspirations (Lilach Sigan, Maariv) In the declaration that led to the establishment of the State of Israel, there is no word against the Arabs, and it does not violate the rights of the Palestinians. The time has come for Arab citizens to respect our national aspirations and then demand their own.
The Barren Efforts to Revoke the Balfour Declaration (Dan Margalit, Haaretz+) The Palestinians’ request of Theresa May shows that they do not recognize the legitimacy of the Jewish presence in the Land of Israel despite everything that has been said about ‘two states for two peoples.’