Meet APN’s 2017 summer interns: Jessica Klein, Hashem Sayed, and Katya Lipovetsky!

(From left to right: Hashem Sayed, Jessica Klein, and Katya Lipovetsky)

As we do every summer, we are hosting an intern enrolled in the Union for Reform Judaism Machon Kaplan program. This year, our Machon Kaplan intern is Jessica Klein of New Rochelle NY, a rising junior at Penn State University.

And, for the seventh consecutive year, we are hosting interns enrolled in the New Story Leadership (NSL) program, which gives young Israelis and Palestinians the opportunity to spend a summer in Washington, DC engaging each other in intense dialogue, forging relationships, and building their narrative and leadership skills.

Our NSL interns this year are Hashem Sayed and Katya Lipovetsky. Hashem is a Palestinian from East Jerusalem. He has a bachelor’s degree in Development Studies from Al-Quds University and recently received a full-scholarship for a Masters program in Environmental Anthropology at Ben-Gurion University. He sees his future career as an academic researcher in anthropology, encouraging development in Palestinian communities by raising awareness about sustainability saving the environment. Katya, an Israeli,  has a B.A. in Political Science and Sociology-Anthropology from Hebrew University in Jerusalem and recently completed an internship with Concordia Summit in New York, where she worked with the Social Impact team on campaigns against labor trafficking, food waste and supply, animal welfare and more. Katya is eager to see what life will bring and how her experience in NSL and with APN will shape her understanding and broaden her horizons.

June 19, 2017 - Israel's Gaza problem, locally and regionally

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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 some of the creative thinking on what Israel could do to head off a disaster in the Gaza Strip, such as Katz's proposal for a man-made island off Gaza; whose hands the island’s security would be in; the regional and international complications that appear to render the island idea unrealistic under current circumstances; and whether this issue is linked in any way to PM Netanyahu’s zigzag regarding a plan to allow the West Bank city of Qalqilya to expand into Area C and double its population.

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Latest podcast - #13: Gaza Crisis and Qatar's Role

This episode has two segments, both relate to the Gaza Strip. 

The first segment is an interview with the World Bank’s country director for the West Bank and Gaza Strip, Marina Wes. She talked about the terrible state of the Gaza economy, about its dependence on external financial assistance, and about its grim future. 

 

The second segment is a conversation with Haim Malka of the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, DC, who focused on Gaza’s largest donor, the gulf emirate of Qatar. 

 

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Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu apparently wants to convince us that he is not interested in reaching a peace deal, but in maintaining power by catering to his radical right flank and the settler movement.

At a June 6 ceremony celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Six Day War, Netanyahu promised an audience of settlers that “no one will be uprooted from their home. … I’m doing whatever is needed to protect the Jewish settlement enterprise in Judea and Samaria. … We are building and planning in all parts of Judea and Samaria.”

During a White House press conference in February, while expressing his interest in helping make the “ultimate” Israeli-Palestinian peace deal, President Donald Trump appealed to Netanyahu: “I’d like to see you hold back on settlements for a little bit,” he said. Trump’s ask clearly didn’t persuade Netanyahu against giving in to the settlers’ demands for expansion. Netanyahu’s promise to the settlers not only contradicts his stated support for a two-state solution, but also jeopardizes the prospects of future Israeli-Palestinian peace.

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Join us June 23rd: Settlements at 50 Years - An Obstacle to Peace and Democracy

Settlements at 50 Years - An Obstacle to Peace and Democracy 

Attorney Talia Sasson, President of the New Israel Fund 

In conversation with Amir Tibon, Washington Correspondent for Haaretz Newspaper

Friday, June 23rd at 12:30 pm - 1:45 pm

Middle East Institute

1319 18th Street MW, Washington, DC

Light lunch will be available at 12:15 pm

Register here

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Book Talk with Dr. Sara Yael Hirschhorn, June 25th

Please join the Foundation for Middle East Peace and Americans for Peace Now for a discussion with Dr. Sara Yael Hirschhorn about her new, critically-acclaimed book, “City on a Hilltop: American Jews and the Israeli Settler Movement.”

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The Israeli Knesset passed legislation known as the "Entry Law" on March 6, 2017, which will ban entry to Israel of foreigners who support or publicly engage in a blanket boycott of Israel, or who support or engage in boycotts targeting West Bank settlements.

*** APN's statement condemning passage of the law is here and APN's Resource page on the bill is here.

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June 12, 2017 - Israel-Palestine-Qatar-Gaza

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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 the revelations in recent days regarding peace proposals and negotiating initiatives in the Israeli-Palestinian sphere since 2014; whether these reported moves offer any new hope; the bottom line; whether things could get worse in the near future if progress is not likely; how possible deterioration links up with the Saudi-led economic siege of Qatar; and the violent ISIS attack on Iran last week and Trump's “condolence” message.

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Support APN's new settlements app and help "win the peace"

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Fifty years ago this past week, the state of Israel erupted in collective celebration after conquering the West Bank, Gaza, Sinai, and the Golan Heights. Having defeated the combined armies of Egypt, Syria, and Jordan in six days, the elation and relief felt by the entire country was immeasurable – and nearly universal.

I remember, right after the war, my parents taking the family for euphoric trips to biblical sites in the West Bank and East Jerusalem. My parents, both teachers, marveled at the historic significance of each site, sometimes reading the relevant passages from the Bible. There was a genuine joy of re-connecting to our national heritage.

The irony is that, in the wake of its greatest military victory, Israel was led to its greatest political defeat: five decades of conflict and occupation that have left Israel’s future as a Jewish and democratic state severely threatened.

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APN Statement Marking 50 Years of Israeli Occupation

Today is the fiftieth anniversary of the Six-Day War, Israel's greatest military victory, a victory that ironically inflicted a political disaster upon the state of Israel.

After fifty years, the disastrous Pyrrhic repercussions of this military victory are intensifying as the occupation of the West Bank solidifies both on the ground and in the minds of many Israelis, Palestinians, and their leaders.

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