Americans for Peace Now (APN) joins its Israeli sister organization, Israel's Peace Now movement, in strongly condemning the killing of two Israeli soldiers in the West Bank over the Sukkot holiday weekend.
This week, Alpher discusses the strategic challenges Israel confronts in the United Nations General Assembly session opening this week, why the Israeli government, alone, is criticizing President Rowhani's moderate statements, how we get from the Iranian Syrian non-conventional weapons issues to attempts to restrain Israel's nuclear potential, and why Russia is so interested in a failed state like Syria, and what consequences we can expect in the wake of two IDF soldiers killed in recent days in the West Bank, and an incident over the demolishing of Arab dwellings in the Jordan Valley that got Israel into trouble with the European Union.
Beginning Wednesday night, September 18th, the Jewish holiday of Sukkot begins. During the week-long holiday, Jews build a special kind of home to dwell in for the week, called a sukkah. The sukkah is a deliberately temporary house, which can have no more than one permanent wall, and whose roof must be open to the sky, covered only partially by natural materials such as branches. The sukkah is a strange sort of dwelling, and yet, it is so important, that we use it every Friday night on Shabbat, as a metaphor for peace, asking that God, "spread over us a sukkah of Your peace." May this year's sukkah be a sukkat shalom, a sukkah of peace, and may we merit to build our house - Israel- from peace.
It's easy to be dismissive of the idea that the Israeli-Palestinian conflict will be solved through a negotiated two-state solution. Libraries are filled with books about failed peace efforts. The daily news is replete with reports of developments that undermine a two-state outcome. Those who oppose two states are growing more powerful on both sides. And the impotence of the United States and international community when it comes to getting serious about this issue is so self-evident as to be cliché.
This week, Alpher discusses the new Middle East reality Israel confronts as a consequence of the US-Russian deal regarding Syria's chemical weapons, what lessons and conclusions can be taken from the massive commemoration in Israel of the 40 years since the outbreak of the 1973 war with Egypt and Syria, the significance of a ruling by an Israeli judge two weeks ago concerning Palestinian incitement against Israel, and the contribution of Osama al-Baz, who died Saturday in Egypt, to peace.
Beginning this Friday evening and continuing through Saturday night, the holiday of Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, will be observed by Jews throughout the world.
This week Alpher discusses the interim ramifications for Israel of the Obama appeal for congressional support to attack Syria, the most relevant lessons of Oslo right now, as Israel and the PLO once again seek a negotiated solution, and a summary of the outgoing Jewish year, 5773, from the standpoint of Israel's overall security.
Topics discussed are the Assad regime and its assessment of President Obama's decision to postpone a punitive
attack pending congressional approval; Israeli assessment of the decision to postpone.
Also, the issue of shortages of and long lines for gas masks in Israel, and Israel's security needs if and when a two-state solution is reached.
Every year, on Rosh Hashanah, we wish you and other supporters of Americans for Peace Now that the coming year be a
Shnat Shalom, a year of peace. Like other forms of well-wishing, it has become somewhat of a cliché.