Peace Now Settlement Watch: Tenders Published for 323 Housing Units in East Jerusalem

This morning, tenders for 323 housing units in East Jerusalem were published:

89 units in Gilo
36 units in Neve Yaacov
68 units in Pisgat Zeev 
130 units in Har Homa
 
These tenders are for housing units that have been tendered in the past but were never built (the tender in Gilo was published without dates and details so we cannot tell if these are new units or units that were tendered before). Although the government tried to build these units in the past, it never did so and thus the government is now initiating entirely new construction.
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The fifth in a series of security validators for APN is Condoleezza Rice, an American political scientist and diplomat. Rice served as the 66th United States Secretary of State, and was the first female African-American to hold that position, as well as the second African American secretary of state, and the second female secretary of state. Rice was President Bush's National Security Advisor during his first term, making her the first woman to serve in that position. Before joining the Bush administration, she was a professor of political science at Stanford University where she served as Provost from 1993 to 1999. Rice also served on the National Security Council as the Soviet and Eastern Europe Affairs Advisor to President George H.W. Bush during the dissolution of the Soviet Union and German reunification.

 

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Pinchas: When the head is unworthy, the people are punished

Peace_Parsha_Logo185Rabbi Simkha Y. Weintraub, LCSW serves as Rabbinic Director of the Jewish Board of Family and Children’s Services in New York City, working with individuals who are ill,  bereaved, or survivors of trauma, through Jewish spiritual counseling, support groups, workshops and printed materials.  He has been deeply involved in human rights advocacy, Jewish-Muslim relations, interfaith exchanges, and the nexus of spiritual resources and mental health for over thirty years.

 

This week’s  Torah portion is named for a man –Pinhas-  who represents both heroism and horror in our tradition. It is, to say the least, complicated in terms of role models for leadership. In contrast, Moshe,  recognized as the greatest of the Jewish people’s leaders, and who in this week’s portion is engaged in the search for his impending replacement,  ‘advises’ the Almighty regarding his successor and in so doing, offers a prescription for a good leader. 

And Moshe spoke to God, saying, Let the God of the spirits of all flesh set a man over the congregation, who may go out before them, and who may go in before them, and who may lead them out, and who may bring them in; that the congregation of God be not as sheep that have no shepherd. (Numbers 27:15-17)

Moshe’s counsel as set out in these three verses and elucidated by a number of Torah commentaries, points to the leadership challenges the state of Israel faces at present, with a current leadership that has  failed to take the actions that would result in the much desired goal of security and peace for Israel, and for the Palestinians as well.

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APN Receives Narrative Champion Award form New Story Leadership

On Thursday, July 21st, Americans for Peace Now received one of two inaugural Narrative Champion Awards from New Story Leadership. NSL brings together young emerging Palestinian and Israeli leaders in order to train them into a team ready to help build a better future for their two communities by giving them an experience of living, working and learning together over a summer in Washington DC using the transformative power of stories. 

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July 18, 2016 - Deterring human rights advocacy in Israel; terror in Nice; coup in Turkey

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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 what’s wrong with the Knesset bill passed July 11th, that stigmatizes human rights NGOs (non-governmental organizations, or non-profits) in Israel by obliging them to constantly and blatantly publicize funding they receive from foreign governments; truck attack in Nice on Bastille Day, July 14; and what was relevant about the failed military coup in Turkey.

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David Bernstein has written an articulate defense of those who, like him, refuse to denounce the Israeli occupation of the West Bank, or in some extreme cases even admit that an occupation exists. (“Why I Don’t Call Israel Out on the Occupation,” Opinion, July 8) He argues that simply calling for an immediate end to the Occupation does not recognize the complexity of the situation and will not bring peace and security to Israel.

Sadly, however, my friend David has missed the mark. The occupation can be denounced without calling for immediate withdrawal.

The occupation is evil. It is immoral. It is un-Jewish. When I carried my JNF blue “pushka” on the streets of Brooklyn as a child, when I literally leapt for joy as I listened to the announcement of results of the UN vote in 1947, when I worked, together with David Bernstein at the American Jewish Committee and now at the JCPA, and as chair of Americans for Peace Now, for the safety and the security of the State of Israel I did not dream of a Jewish nation that would be the oppressor of another people.

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The fourth in a series of security validators for APN is Gen. Colin Powell, American statesman and  retired four-star general in the United States Army, 65th United States Secretary of State,  former National Security Advisor (1987–1989), former Commander of the U.S. Army Forces Command (1989) and former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (1989–1993).

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Brookings2.320x320On Monday, July 11 2016, the Brookings Institute published the results of the most recent surveys on American attitudes toward the Middle East, conducted by Shibley Telhami, Nonresident Senior Fellow. The newest poll was conducted within two weeks of the shootings in Orlando, focusing on American attitudes toward Muslims and Islam. These results were compared to those of similar polls carried out in November 2015 and May 2016 to see whether there has been a shift in public opinion since two important landmarks: The most vital months of the presidential election campaigns, and the Orlando massacre.

Telhami noted that the results of the most recent polls were unexpected: despite the extremely inflammatory anti-Muslim rhetoric of the presidential campaigns, as well as the fact that the Orlando shootings were carried out by a radicalized Muslim, more people tended to be favorable toward both the Muslim religion and the Muslim people in the May and June 2016 polls. In November 2015, 53% of those questioned responded that they held a favorable attitude toward the Muslim people. That percentage increased to 58% in May 2016 (pre-Orlando) and then to 62% in June 2016 (post-Orlando). This trend also repeated itself with regards to attitudes toward the Muslim religion: 37% were favorable toward the Muslim religion in November 2015, 42% in May 2016 and 44% in June 2016. It was also encouraging to see that the proportion of Americans who identify with the position that Islamic and Western religious and social traditions are incompatible with each other has decreased from 39% in November 2015 to 34% in June 2016.

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Don't Let Them Silence Peace Now

censored!Last night, Netanyahu’s right wing government pushed a law through the Knesset to silence dissent. Although it was touted to the public as a matter of transparency, the reality is that this law is aimed at Peace Now and other progressive groups.

Never mind that all non-profit organizations receiving funding from foreign governments must already disclose all such funding. Never mind that NGOs on the left, which are already transparent about their donors, are publicly branded, in effect, as agents of foreign governments. Never mind that right-wing groups – whose agendas align comfortably with that of the current Israeli government and who receive millions of dollars in donations from foreign individuals and entities – are able to keep their donors secret.

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APN condemns new anti-democratic Israeli law

Israel’s Peace Now Movement to Challenge New NGO Law before Israel’s Supreme Court 

Washington, DC -- Americans for Peace Now (APN) joins its Israeli sister organization, Peace Now (Shalom Achshav) in strongly condemning the new NGO Law, adopted last night by the Knesset, as a blatant violation of freedom of expression. APN supports Peace Now’s intention to challenge the new law before Israel’s Supreme Court. 

As Peace Now points out, this law is tailored specifically to target only peace and human rights organizations. It intends to divert the Israeli public discourse away from the occupation, and to silence opposition to the government's policies. 

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