APN's Lara Friedman in Haaretz: What Israeli Palestinian mutual recognition really means.

Unlike Israel's unilateral insistence on the 'Jewish state', Israeli and Palestinian leaders need to find a recognition formula that reconciles two opposing national narratives.

By now everyone has realized that there’s a new issue on the Israeli-Palestinian negotiations agenda that’s not going away: The demand that the Palestinians not only recognize Israel - something they have done repeatedly, starting in 1993 - but that they recognize Israel as "a Jewish state," or some similar wording. No such “recognition-plus” demand was made of Egypt or Jordan, nor was it mentioned in the Oslo agreement or subsequent Israeli-Palestinian documents. It made a brief appearance in the Annapolis talks of 2007, but only as a marginal issue. Only In 2009 did it truly come into play, courtesy of Benjamin Netanyahu.

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APN's Ori Nir in Haaretz: Two-staters, unite behind Kerry

kerry_briefing_2014-320x265You don’t have to love everything that the U.S. Secretary of State will present in his 'framework’ paper - but there is too much at stake not to support a chance for peace.

There’s a kind of hush in the peace camp as Secretary of State John Kerry prepares to issue the “framework” for continued Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations. And unlike Karen Carpenter's saccharine song, this hush is not intended to make room for the sound of lovers in love. It’s a hush of inhibition, the silence of the skeptics who have known too many past disappointments.

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Hard Questions, Tough Answers with Yossi Alpher: March 24, 2014

This week, Alpher discusses why Israel is hesitating to release another group of Palestinian prisoners this week; the Hamas connection; if the US-sponsored two-state talks will be extended; the upset in Israel-US relations by Israeli statements and actions, mainly regarding Iran; and whether there is an Iranian parallel to Yaalon's challenge to the current international effort to reach a nuclear agreement with the Rowhani government.

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Press Release: APN Lambasts New Planned Settlement Construction

As the Obama administration prepares to kick its efforts to broker Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations into higher gear, the government of Israel is advancing plans to build 2,372 new housing units in West Bank settlements.

News of this new round of settlement construction plans was publicized yesterday by Americans for Peace Now's Israeli sister-organization, Shalom Achshav (Peace Now).

Americans for Peace Now joins Shalom Achshav in condemning the new plans for construction in settlements, many of which are east of the "Separation Barrier," in areas that are almost certain to come under Palestinian sovereignty when a two-state peace agreement is achieved.

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The Book of Vayikra (Leviticus), which we recently began, focuses on ritual matters, primarily, the details of offerings, including burnt offerings, sin offerings (separate ones to atone for deliberate transgressions and inadvertent failings) and guilt offerings … and what is usually translated as the “peace” offering.

Now, the “peace offering,” of course, doesn’t have to do with a cessation of hostilities, but comes from the root shin-lamed-mem, which denotes both shalom — peace — and shlemut, a character of wholeness. Wholeness is especially relevant to us in these times, when a moment of hope for the other kind of peace presents on the horizon a two-state solution between the Israelis and Palestinians.

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Hard Questions, Tough Answers with Yossi Alpher: March 17, 2014

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This week, Alpher discusses how critical Monday's meeting between Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas and US President Barack Obama is likely to be; why it took Obama and Kerry all this time to recognize just how far apart the two sides are; what the strategic ramifications of last week's firing of more than 70 rockets into Israel Islamic Jihad are;  and what it means at the national level that last week, Israel's parliamentary opposition boycotted three key Knesset debates and votes regarding highly controversial measures of national importance.

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I KNOW where you live: A Purim message from Sara Ehrman, APN Board member

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I know where you live: A Purim message from Sara Ehrman, APN Board member

 

Our Jewish tradition assigns meaning to many milestones in life. At 12 or 13 we have a bat/bar mitzvah. At 15, it’s time to start studying Talmud. Forty is when you can study kabbalah.

But when you turn 95? Bupkas. Judaism has nothing to say.

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APN Condemns Rocket Barrage on Israel

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In response to today's rocket barrage into Israel from Gaza, APN President and CEO Debra DeLee stated:

"We unequivocally condemn the heinous attacks carried out today against Israel, apparently by Islamic Jihad in the Gaza Strip. This firing of rockets into Israel, threatening Israeli civilians, is terrorism, pure and simple. We support Israel's right to defend itself and its duty to defend its citizens in the face of such attacks. In exercising this sovereign right of self defense, we urge Israel to pay attention to past experience, seeking both to avoid harming Palestinian civilians and to avert a potentially disastrous cycle of escalation. Our thoughts are with Israel's citizens living in the shadow of these rockets, as well as with Gaza's civilians, whose welfare, too, is being treated with callous disregard by violent Palestinian extremists."

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APN Press Release: APN Mourns the Death of Ambassador Samuel Lewis

Americans for Peace Now (APN) mourns the death of Ambassador Samuel Lewis, a distinguished American diplomat and a leading expert on US Middle East policy, a staunch supporter of Arab-Israeli peace, a true friend of Israel and an influential activist for Israeli-Palestinian peace.

APN's President and CEO Debra DeLee said: "Sam's passing is a terrible loss to the peace movement and to those who knew him and deeply appreciated him as a human being. He was a man with a big intellect and a big heart, whose pro-peace positions were guided by a moral compass and by a deep commitment to the national security of the United States and to the wellbeing of the state of Israel.

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On Purim, this year let's take off the masks..

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On Purim, we play dress up, we wear masks, we pretend to be people we are not. Leaders of nations that need peace like we need oxygen for breathing don’t have the privilege to play with masks. But here we are, at the end of the nine-month period allotted for the peace process to bear fruit, and politicians are still playing games of chance with their peoples’ future.

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