News Nosh: 7.15.18

APN's daily news review from Israel
Sunday July 15, 2018
Quote of the day:
"Were it not for the kites, the fires, the Qassam rockets, the Palestinians would have entirely exited the awareness of everyone in Israel"
--Haaretz commentator Gideon Levy commends Gazans for their almost four-month-long protest, which brought to the attention of Israelis and the world the plight of the Palestinians and their desire for an end to the Israeli siege and occupation, even at the cost of their lives.*

Front Page:
Haaretz
  • IDF attacked dozens of targets in Gaza in response to incessant firing on southern (Israeli) communities; Israel and Hamas agreed to ceasefire
  • The operation has not yet begun // Amos Harel
  • Netanyahu will convene today coalition heads for fateful discussion on (Jewish) Nation-State bill
  • Religious and democratic // Mordechai Kremnitzer
  • The (Arab-Israeli) boy who was kidnapped in Kalanswa was returned to his family; Police: He was held in an apartment near Ramallah
  • Police missed opportunity to improve the lack of trust crisis with the Arab sector // Jack Khoury
  • A moment before beginning its recess, Knesset expected to approve law that will expand the censorship on the Internet
  • Russian intel officers accused of sabotaging Clinton’s (presidential) campaign
  • Couple’s jump // Iris Leal on professor Orit Zamir’s defense of sexually harassing journalist Ari Shavit
  • The world of (actor) Sasson Gabbai changed. At age 70, he talks about a new manliness and sexuality
Yedioth Ahronoth
  • Life in red - Saturday of fire: Some 300 launches towards the communities surrounding Gaza - IDF powerfully attacked Gaza; Hamas, last night: The round is over
  • We are hostages // Matan Tzuri
  • Empty threats // Shlomo Pyotrakovsky
  • Double attrition // Alex Fishman
  • The Israeli condition // Yossi Yehoshua
  • Karim came home - Happy ending: 7-year-old kidnapped to Ramallah was returned home
Maariv This Week (Hebrew links only)
Israel Hayom

News Summary:
A flare up between Israel and the Gaza Strip over the weekend, with two Palestinians killed, (and another 200+ wounded in Gaza fence protests), four members of an Israeli family lightly wounded from rocket shrapnel, and an IDF officer wounded from a hand grenade, as Israeli combat jets bombarded the Gaza Strip and Palestinians retaliated with over 200 rockets and mortars (an UNRWA spokesman said, “Gazans have nothing to lose” and Israelis living near the Gaza fence were in fear of a fourth Gaza war) - eventually leading to a ceasefire. (A Gaza source told Ynet’s Elior Levy that the ceasefire agreement includes the gradual end of incendiary balloons and kites and the gradual moderation of the 'March of Return' protests). Meanwhile, the seven-year-old kidnapped Arab Israeli boy was returned to his family with the help of the Palestinian police and an Israeli Arab mediator and the Israeli coalition prepared to pass the controversial Jewish nation-state law, which US Jewish leaders called ‘racist and discriminatory’ and over which the European Union warned Israel in a statement that "the respect for human rights and fundamental principles are a key part of the EU-Israel partnership" - and making top stories in today’s Hebrew newspapers.
Quick Hits:
  • Israel Shot a 15-year-old Palestinian on the Gaza Border. Then It Barred His Hospital Visitors - Adam Salem was hospitalized in serious condition in Israel for two weeks without being allowed to talk to his family or to receive visits from a lawyer, even though he was not under arrest. (Haaretz+)
  • Court defers decision on demolition of West Bank Bedouin village - State rejects Khan al-Ahmar residents' claim their attempts to secure retroactive building permits had been ignored by zoning authorities, with court summoning both sides for a session by August 15, effectively putting the demolition on hold until then. (Ynet)
  • Teen suspect in Duma terror trial released to house arrest - Putting end to more than 2 years under arrest, judge orders Thursday that the unidentified (man who was then a) minor, who was indicted for his involvement in a 2015 firebombing that claimed three Palestinian lives, to wear an electronic bracelet and not to leave Israel. (Ynet)
  • Israel fires at second drone approaching from Syria this week - The Israeli military confirms it fired a Patriot missile at a drone approaching from Syria. (Haaretz and Ynet)
  • Lindsey Graham doubles down against Israel-Russia deal on Syria - 'Without Assad’s blessing, the flags of Hezbollah and the Iranian Revolutionary Guard would not be on Israel’s front door,' Graham tweets in response to Netanyahu claiming Israel has no problem with Assad. (Haaretz)
  • Israel's Arab citizens suffer more sickness than Jews - Knesset meeting to promote health in the Arab sector receives data showing immense gaps in health conditions and how it affects state’s budget; MK Ahmad Tibi urges investment in raising health awareness among the Arab population. (Yedioth/Ynet)
  • No white shirts, separate smoking areas for female soldiers: Israeli army beefs up 'modesty' rules - Ultra-Orthodox soldiers are demanding such measures, and secular officers are complying. (Haaretz+)
  • 'Stolen Arab art': Israeli gallery shows artists' works against their will - New exhibit features works by artists who refuse to show in Israel. Gallery curator says exhibit is its own type of performance. (Haaretz+)
  • Israeli forces separate 2 Hebron villages with dirt mounds - Israeli forces blocked late Wednesday the road between Khirbet Shaab al-Butum and Masafer Yatta south of the southern occupied West Bank district of Hebron using dirt mounds. (Maan)
  • Azaria family clashed with former defense minister Ya'alon, who replied: “They are using you politically" - The father and mother of the ‘Shooting Soldier from Hebron’ showed up at an event at a synagogue in Givat Shmuel where the former defense minister was invited to speak and the couple verbally attacked him and presented him with questions about the incident. However, his answers did not satisfy them and they interrupted him constantly. (Maariv)
  • Report: Crane collapse kills a worker in northern Israel - 10 others trapped workers were rescued from the tunnel; four of them sustained minor to moderate injuries, authorities say. Police to investigate the incident with an investigator from the Labor and Social Affairs Ministry. (Haaretz)
  • Hungary soccer team, Jewish leaders remember heroic coach - Istvan Toth, a former Ferencvaros player and coach, was in the anti-Nazi resistance and helped save hundreds of Jews during the Holocaust before he was executed in 1945; he was honored ahead of team's Europa League qualifying match against Maccabi Tel. (Agencies, Ynet)
  • NASA chief in first Israel visit to expand cooperation on joint space projects - Israel Space Agency hopes for appointment of new Israeli astronaut. (Haaretz+)
  • Elbit rolls out Hermes 900 StarLiner, a UAV for civilian airspace - After years of solely military use, first drone for security-related use certified to fly in civilian airspace, use commercial runways, and is equipped with collision-prevention sensors and advanced cameras, radar. (Ynet)
  • Israel begins supplying upgraded Gil 2 missile to foreign armies - Rafael Systems missile able to penetrate 20 cm of armed concrete and can strike target without a direct line of vision; company says the missile's ability improved by 30%. (Ynet)
  • Israeli author receives prestigious Bulgarian award - Michael Bar-Zohar says ‘I feel extraordinary, though badges of honor don't excite me' after Bulgarian president bestows upon the prolific writer the Stara Planina First Class award at a ceremony in Sofia. (Ynet)
  • PLO to convene over Israeli legislation that 'Judaizes Palestinian lands' - In the wake of Israeli efforts to demolish Bedouin West Bank village of Khan al-Ahmar, and law deducting terrorists' salaries from funds to PA, Palestinians to convene PLO Executive Committee to 'discuss ways to confront the latest Israeli violations.' (Ynet)
  • Hamas delegation arrived last week in Cairo for talks - The Egyptian invitation to hold talks in Cairo were expected to focus on reaching an agreement with Israel and on attempts to revive the Palestinian reconciliation agreement. (Maan)
  • NBA all-star Draymond Green faces outrage after filmed shooting guns with Israeli forces - 'Flashing a toothy grin w/ a sniper rifle in Israel on a trip sponsored by Friends of the IDF is so horribly offensive. They’ve recently slaughtered 100s of unarmed Palestinians w/ those rifles,' writes activist Shaun King. (JTA, Haaretz)
  • U.S. more isolated than ever over Iran sanctions, Rohani says - The Iranian president says on live television that the U.S. has isolated itself from its allies in Trump's decision to withdraw from the nuclear deal. (Agencies, Haaretz)


Features:
Shattering the Myth About Egyptian Elites Supporting the Nazis During World War II
Scholar Israel Gershoni shows in his new book how the middle classes were willing to accept a pro-British government because they saw it as the lesser of two evils, and something that would save them from the Germans. (Orit Bashkin, Haaretz+)
With a kaffiyeh and synthesizer: The Arab music revolution starts here
The duo Zenobia from Nazareth makes music that is 'hypnotic, powerful and seasoned with critical dashes of Levantine acid.’ (Bar Peleg, Haaretz+)
When the Israeli cop pushed her aunt to the ground, this Bedouin woman couldn’t stand by
Sara Abu Dahouk was only one of the protesters this week at a West Bank Bedouin village slated for demolition, but her violent arrest reflects the Israeli authorities’ feelings about the residents who are threatened with eviction. (Amira Hass, Haaretz+)
The FBI's secret file on the Zionist militia man who raised funds from Jewish gangsters
How an Israeli professor discovered surprising information linking 'Peter Bergson' – who worked during the 1940s in the U.S. to help the Irgun underground in Mandatory Palestine, as well as European Jewry – to some notorious Jewish gangsters. (Maya Guez, Haaretz+)

Commentary/Analysis:
Hamas Has a Strategy, Israel Has Only Tactics (Zvi Bar'el, Haaretz+) A fragile and thin boundary separates violent dialogue from a deterioration which could ignite public pressure to secure Egypt's border with Gaza.
How the incendiary balloons and kites could lead to war (Ron Ben-Yishai, Ynet) Neither Israel nor Hamas want another round of fighting in Gaza, so why have chances of a war breaking out increased? Hamas mistakenly believes the incendiary balloons give it a psychological victory over Israel's citizens. Israel must make the terror group realize such measures are of no use to it.
Gaza Flare-up: Netanyahu Resists Pressure for War, but Flames Getting Higher (Amos Harel, Haaretz+) With Netanyahu in Russia, Israel's defense chief was the one forced to deflect criticism on the burning south.
In the south there is a war of attrition, and Netanyahu just wants to pass the summer safely (Yossi Melman, Maariv) So far, in this war of attrition, Hamas has the upper hand. It set a new equation and rules of the game. The attempt to declare the closure of the border at Kerem Shalom was also revealed as fake news.
A Day of Battle in Gaza: Israel Tries to Change Rules of the Game Against Hamas (Amos Harel, Haaretz+) In a new twist, Hamas has claimed responsibility for rocket fire. Israel has tried to break this new ‘balance of deterrence’ via its massive assault over 24 hours, but for now there is still no war in sight.
A prime minister who is caught between investigations and elections is a prime minister who cannot make decision (Ran Adelist, Maariv) Instead of going for a hudna (long-term ceasefire), instead of trading prisoners and bodies and exchanging the (corpses of the soldiers) killed in Operation Protective Edge for Hamas prisoners, instead of easing the siege, the heroes of the microphone react with "determination" while fertilizing their land for the next round.
The truth about Netanyahu, Lieberman and attacks from Gaza (Zehava Galon, Haaretz+) The residents of the Gaza border communities who are seeking a real solution from the government are talking to a wall…In Lebanon, we sent soldiers to die so Ehud Olmert and Dan Halutz could get a victory picture, and in Gaza, a bunch of losers sent soldiers to their deaths without serious discussion, without examining alternatives, in the name of a conception that none of them dared to question. There was no need to wait for the state comptroller’s report to find this out; the ministers freely volunteered this information. In Israel, war is not diplomacy by other means, as Von Clausewitz described it. Here there is no diplomacy to begin with, and war is the default choice about which no discussion is needed. Dozens of Israeli casualties and thousands of Palestinian dead in Operation Protective Edge, 165 Israelis killed in Lebanon along with hundreds of Lebanese – and no one in the cabinet thinks alternatives ought to be discussed. “Not interested,” as our defense minister so blithely put it…The truth must be told: The people living near the Gaza border have been abandoned for years in the name of this conception, just as the residents of Kiryat Shmona were abandoned 20 years ago…Then the conception was the security zone, and it’s astounding how easily we forgot the bloody price we paid for it every month. Today the conception is the policy of “mowing the lawn,” wherein Israel has decided that rather than try to achieve calm in Gaza, it’s better to maintain a multiyear blockade with periodic military campaigns to “restore deterrence.”
The time has come for Netanyahu to present a long-term strategy and move from managing reality to changing it (MK Amir Peretz, Maariv) If Netanyahu and his ministers want to change the situation and not return to the bi-weekly confrontations, they must make a decision that will clarify how we see the reality in Gaza.
*We Should Be Saluting the Gaza Strip (Gideon Levy, Haaretz+) Were it not for the Gaza Strip, the occupation would have been long forgotten. Were it not for the Gaza Strip, Israel would have erased the Palestinian problem from its agenda and continued on blithely with its crimes and annexations, with its routine, as if 4 million people were not living under its heel. Were it not for the Gaza Strip, the world would also have forgotten. Most of it already has. This is why we must now salute the Gaza Strip — mainly the spirit of the Gaza Strip, the only one that is still breathing life into the desperate and lost cause of the Palestinian struggle for liberty…It’s difficult, even insolent, to write these words from tranquil and secure Tel Aviv, following one more sleepless and nightmarish night in the south, but all days and nights in the Gaza Strip are much more difficult due to Israel’s inhumane policy, supported by most of its citizens, including people who live in the south. They don’t deserve to shoulder the burden but every struggle exacts a price from innocent victims, who we wish do not become casualties. One should remember that only Palestinians are being killed. On Saturday, the 139th victim of Israeli fire along the border died. He was 20. On Friday a 15-year-old boy was killed. The Gaza Strip is paying the full price in blood. This doesn’t cause it to desist. That is its spirit. One cannot but admire it. The spirit of Gaza is unbroken by any siege. The evil ones in Jerusalem shut down the Kerem Shalom border crossing, and Gaza shoots. The malicious ones in the Kirya government complex in Tel Aviv prevent young people from receiving medical treatment in the West Bank in order to save their legs from being amputated. For years they have been preventing cancer patients, including women and children, from receiving lifesaving treatment. Only 54 percent of requests to leave the Gaza Strip for medical reasons were approved last year, compared to 93 percent in 2012. That is wicked. One should read the letter written in June by 31 Israeli oncologists who called for a cessation of the abuse of Gaza women with cancer whose applications for exit permits take months to process, sealing their fates. The 31 rockets fired into Israel from the Gaza Strip Friday night are a restrained response to this malice. They are no more than a muted reminder of the fate of the Gaza Strip, addressed to those who think that 2 million people can be treated like this for over 10 years while continuing as if nothing was happening.
The injury of the officer from the throwing of a grenade marked the end of the IDF's containment (Tal Lev-Ram, Maariv) This weekend, the difference was that the IDF continued to attack targets in Gaza even during the day. Thus, between a diplomatic solution and attempts to formulate an international plan, Israel and Hamas are much closer to another military operation.
A Futile Round in Gaza (Haaretz Editorial+) It’s doubtful that the Israeli arsenal has a means for deterring 2 million people under brutal closure for 11 years now.
The government is ready to bury soldiers every few years on the altar of the status quo (Ben Caspit, Maariv) How can a refusenik groom and a rebellious bride continue to march together to their canopy? Because that's how it is here, with us. The logic is healthy, but the madness is uncontrollable. On Saturday, the rules of the game were not broken: Hamas did not fire too far or too many (rockets), Israel attacked dozens of targets, but tried not to cause too many casualties. On both sides they try not to give the other side an excuse to "lose it" and they leave a ladder to climb down the tree. What's left is just to get down.
Israel’s nation-state bill betrays insecurity about its right to the land (Mordechai Kremnitzer, Haaretz+) The more one adds sources for a legal right, the less a law deriving from this right will be sturdy. But the bill’s framers are using religion to justify discrimination against non-Jews.
Discrimination, racism and Smotrich (Aviad Kleinberg, Yedioth/Ynet) The nationality bill was not meant to meet the needs of the people, but those of Smotrich's Bayit Yehudi party. The question of national interest is irrelevant. The only relevant interest is the nationalistic one.
This racist bill is a juicy gift for Israel-haters (Yossi Verter, Haaretz+) Israel's democracy took a beating this week as Netanyahu continued to bulldoze through the contentious nation-state bill, and Minister Akunis once again acted in the spirit of McCarthy.
National-state law: Does the president care that we have long lost the Jewish majority in the Galilee? (Kalman Liebeskind, Maariv) To send letters and to be shocked is nice, but from Rivlin, Begin, Ya'alon and Livni is is expected that they say whether they still support the encouragement of Jewish settlement, or does that sound to them a racist matter that might offend the Arabs?
Nation-state bill isn't racist – it preserves the legacy of Israel's founding fathers (Israel Harel, Haaretz+) It is not respectable to submit this bill to the vote in such a cynical way, which degrades its ideological, Zionist and Jewish content.
We need legislation that will balance the state of the Jewish people and the state of all its citizens (Yaniv Sagi, Maariv) The person who is advancing the nation-state law does this out of populist considerations for nationalist voters, but we will all pay the price. Instead, it is necessary to create a non-party “operational program.”
As an Arab, I Support Israel's Jewish Nation-state Bill (Abed L. Azab, Haaretz+) I don’t see anything wrong with communities for Jews only if new Arab communities are built and can decide whether to accept new residents based on religion or nationality.
Rip Up Israel’s New ID Card (Friday Haaretz Editorial) The purpose of the bill, according to its authors and supporters, is to serve as Israel’s identity card. But Israel already has an identity card — the Declaration of Independence. Is it past its expiration date?
Nation-state law is lacking, but there is a need for a Basic Law that establishes the Jewish character of Israel (Prof. Arieh Eldad, Maariv) Even if the wording in question meets the High Court's standards, it still does not regulate two of the most important issues for the people living in Zion: the Law of Return and the status of the Temple Mount.
Jews Are Beginning to Fear Democracy (Anshel Pfeffer, Haaretz+) 'We can’t become victims again': Thanks to Trump, Netanyahu and Putin, the glory days of liberal democracy are over. The arc of history is not bending towards justice. Where will Jews stand?
Avoid the boomerang effect: countries must recognize reality and accept immigrants (Ran Adelist, Maariv) A country that manages to cope with the swarm of human refugees will benefit. In contrast, a country that will close itself around its (nuclear) bomb and does not learn the lessons of North Korea will be North Korea.
What Is Israel Hiding About Its Nuclear Program in the '50s? (Adam Raz, Haaretz+) Israel’s censors may indeed protect state security but they also conceal information that might embarrass public officials.
Assad is not the ideal neighbor, but he also has advantages (Alon Ben David, Maariv) In a few weeks, when the Syrian president takes over the border again, he will also take care of stability. Iranian attacks on the Golan Heights border will endanger his control and assets.
The delusion of a Ukraine for Syria 'deal': Trump's perverse appeasement of Putin will rebound on Israel (Daniel B. Shapiro, Haaretz+) Israelis focused on the Iranian threat in Syria can be forgiven for placing hope in the path Trump is beating to the Helsinki summit. But that's wishful, if not delusional, thinking.
Vladimir Putin Is Laying a Bomb on Israel's Doorstep (Shlomo Bolts, Haaretz+) There's no logical reason for Netanyahu to believe the Russian president's promises that he will push Iranian proxies away from Israel's border. So why is Netanyahu endorsing Putin's lie?
Israel as No. 8 world power? Give me a break (David Rosenberg, Haaretz+) Yet Israel definitely deserves a higher “Best Countries” rating than Russia or India. Could stereotypes be influencing the scores?
Poland and Israel’s false declaration on the Holocaust (Yitzhak Arad, Haaretz+) Nazi Germany is to blame for the destruction of Poland’s Jews, not the Poles. But large segments of the Polish people were not sorry that the Jews had disappeared, and stood by and watched.
Is this the end of Israeli venture capital (and maybe the Startup Nation) as we know it? (Eytan Avriel, Haaretz+) Veteran VC funds are closing, executives are being replaced or looking for work, and U.S. funds might be readying to abandon Israel altogether. The whole model may be broken.
How an Israeli minister endangered scientific cooperation with Germany (Yael Amitai, Haaretz+) By removing me from a scientific panel, Ofir Akunis hoped to bolster his own standing but risked much more.
Interviews:
The Jewish Israeli living in Iraq and helping ISIS victims rebuild their lives
How a Jerusalem resident ended in up in Iraq, working with Yazidi child soldiers and women who were tortured, raped and brainwashed in ISIS captivity. (Interviewed by Ayelett Shani in Haaretz+)
Prepared for APN by Orly Halpern, independent freelance journalist based in Jerusalem.

 

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