Hard Questions, Tough Answers (12.4.17) - Fighting the last war, fighting the next war

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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 whether Trump will announce his decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital and whether this would spark the next intifada; the settlements issue as part of the Trump-Russia investigation; the 70th anniversary of the United Nations decision to partition Palestine and the Palestinians' and Arab countries' rejection of it in 1947; and whether the Netanyahu government should and could have intervened in Syria in 2012, toppled the Assad regime and installed the secular opposition in power.

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Facts matter: A reminder

Facts matter.

And they particularly matter when it comes to a respectable publication like Bloomberg.com and a reputable journalist such as Eli Lake.

In an article that discusses the Trump transition team’s apparent efforts to lobby foreign governments to veto a UN Security Council resolution critical of Israel from which the Obama administration abstained, Lake writes the following: “Even though the Obama administration had less than a month left in office, the president instructed his ambassador to the United Nations to abstain from a resolution, breaking a precedent that went back to 1980 when it came to one-sided anti-Israel resolutions at the UN.”

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APN to Trump: Don't Transfer Israel Embassy to Jerusalem

Alarmed by reports that the Trump Administration is considering immediate action to move the US Israel embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, Americans for Peace Now is calling on President Trump to eschew this dangerous action.

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From Peace Now's Settlement Watch:

The past few months have seen unprecedented developments in the settlements, causing severe damage to the chances of a two-state solution. Accelerated population growth, approvals of housing units in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, promotion of bypass roads, advancements of Knesset bills, home demolitions and changes in legal interpretations - all lead to a situation of de-facto annexation of area C. Without any official declarations, the Israeli government is preventing the viability and contiguity of a future Palestinian state, while treating lands in area C as its own. The implications of the abovementioned developments are far-reaching for Israel, the Palestinians and the region as a whole. 

Peace Now's new report summarizes key developments of the last several months and analyzes their impact, individually and together, on the viability of a Palestinian state alongside Israel and the possibility for a two state solution.

Even with the lack of a final status agreement in sight, it is our duty today to struggle in order to prevent silent annexation efforts and to assure the possibility of a two state solution on the ground.
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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 Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely's disparaging remarks about American Jews; pessimism regarding the likelihood that the Trump administration’s anticipated Israeli-Palestinian peace plan will succeed; and the international legal backdrop to the Netanyahu government's refusal to negotiate with a Palestinian unity government and Russian FM Lavrov's declaration that Iranian forces are in Syria legally.

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APN Sends Condolences to the People of Egypt

Americans for Peace Now is shocked and deeply saddened by the mass-casualty attack on worshipers at a mosque in Sinai, Egypt. Our condolences to the families and the people of Egypt, and wishes of full recovery to those injured.

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APN to Trump: Don't Close Palestinian US Mission

Alarmed by the prospects of the Trump administration ordering the closure of the Palestinian mission in Washington, Americans for Peace Now (APN) is calling on the administration and Congress to allow the Palestine Liberation Organization to keep its office open.

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Letty Cottin Pogrebin is still inspired!

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Fatigue? Fuggetabout it. Letty Cottin Pogrebin is inspired!

Like many activists in the peace camp, I’m occasionally afflicted with “hope fatigue” as I watch the Israeli government give up on the pursuit of peace.

When I think back to the high hopes we had for the Oslo Accords, the Camp David Summit, the Clinton Parameters, and the Quartet’s Road Map, a peaceful resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict seems more remote today than ever before.

I can’t help feeling distressed that both the government of Israel and the Palestinian Authority have permitted the extremists on both sides to dominate the political agenda. My despair deepens as I watch Israelis gobble up land in the West Bank and take over Palestinian property in East Jerusalem that’s supposed to be subject to negotiation in a future peace agreement between the two parties.

But the staff and supporters of Americans for Peace Now—and the young leaders and volunteers at Shalom Achshav, our sister organization in Israel—refuse to succumb to hopelessness and fatigue. They just keep plugging away. And because of them and their work, I keep getting reenergized and recommitted to the struggle to put an end to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

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PeaceCast #28: Jerusalem and Peace in the Trump-Bibi Era

Daniel Seidemann, director of Terrestrial Jerusalem, is one of the world’s leading experts on Jerusalem, Israeli-Palestinian relations, and Jerusalem-related requirements for a future Israeli-Palestinian peace agreement.

On November 14th 2017, APN hosted Seidemann for a discussion about the current situation in Jerusalem and the prospects for peace between Israelis and Palestinians.

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