PeaceCast Episode #137: Zehava Galon Returns to Civil Society

After 16 years in the Knesset, including six years as chairperson of Israel’s Meretz party, Zehava Galon is back to human rights activism as the President of Zulat for Equality and Human Rights, a new Israeli activist think tank.

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(Photo credit: Ronen Ackerman)

Listen to leading experts on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and on U.S.-Israel relations Lara Friedman, President of the Foundation for Middle East Peace, and Danny Seidemann, founder and director of Terrestrial Jerusalem.  Recording is from APN's Zoom webinar from July 2, 2020.


Lara Friedman is the president of the Foundation for Middle East Peace. She joined FMEP in 2017 after a long career at APN as its director of policy and government relations. Lara is a leading authority on U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East, with particular expertise on the Israeli-Arab conflict, Israeli settlements, Jerusalem, and the role of Congress in U.S. policy on the Middle East.

Daniel Seidemann is the Daniel Seidemann is an Israeli attorney specializing in Israeli-Palestinian relations, with an emphasis on Jerusalem. He is the founder and director of Terrestrial Jerusalem, an NGO that works towards a resolution to the question of Jerusalem that is consistent with the two-state solution.

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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.
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News Nosh 7.1.20

APN's daily news review from Israel - Wednesday July 1, 2020


Quote of the day:

"Annexation is a policy of belligerence unbecoming of a country that professes to pursue peace. It’s the diplomatic equivalent of unprovoked aggression, one of the staple Israeli accusations against its neighbors. Rather than proving the wisdom and prudence Israel has always boasted of, annexation is provocative, reckless and dangerous...(it) negates efforts to portray Israel as a responsible member of the free world and international community. It casts Israel as a rogue state that defies not only public opinion but international law as well."
--Haaretz commentator Chemi Shalev writes that annexation ruins 53 years of Israeli propaganda, according to which the evils of occupation are the fault of the Palestinians, who refuse to make peace.*


You Must Be Kidding: 
Despite the sharp rise in coronavirus cases, senior army officials approved that religious settlers hold a mass prayer service with thousands of participants at Joseph’s Tomb in the West Bank in order for G-d to help make Israeli annexation of West Bank land happen.**

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The video, narrated by APN board member Mandy Patinkin, features Israeli human rights lawyers Michael Sfard and Sawasan Zaher. It's both an annexation primer and a call to action!
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JTA: "Mandy Patinkin lends his voice to the growing chorus of West Bank annexation opponents"

Read the JTA article below (originally posted HERE), and watch the New Israel Fund video "The Truth About Annexation" narrated by Mandy Patinkin, member of the Americans for Peace Now Board of Directors,

 (Note: The article includes a link to the Jerusalem Post coverage of his receiving the APN Yitzhak Rabin Peace Award in 2014.)

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Jordan Valley Annexation - A Security Liability, Not an Asset

According to Israel’s prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the bulk of his suggested West Bank annexation is making the Jordan Valley (approximately 30% of the West Bank) an integral part of the state of Israel. Netanyahu’s rationale for annexing the Jordan Valley is that it would bolster Israel’s security. In this paper, APN intern Avraham Spraragen explains why annexing the Jordan Valley would hinder Israeli security rather than boost it.

 

INTRODUCTION

On September 10, 2019, a week before the second of three unprecedented Israeli Knesset elections within a year, Prime Minister of Israel Benjamin Netanyahu announced in a televised press conference his “intention, after the establishment of a new government, to apply Israeli sovereignty to the Jordan Valley.”[1]

In his address to the nation, Netanyahu presented a map that demarcated the proposed swaths of land, constituting 1,236,278 hectares or 22.3 percent of the West Bank, to be annexed.[2] This unilateral annexation plan, a blatant violation of international law and the possible death knell of a two-state solution, would entail an Israeli absorption of 30 settlements, including 12,778 settlers, as well as of 18 illegal outposts.

Following the third election in March, a unity deal was reached between political rivals Netanyahu and former IDF Chief of Staff turned Alternate Prime Minister Benny Gantz for the establishment of a new government. Per Clause 29 of the unity deal, the fragile Netanyahu-Gantz government is set to “bring the agreement reached with the United States on the application of sovereignty [in the West Bank] … for the approval of the cabinet and/or the Knesset starting July 1, 2020.”[3] Days away from this July 1st “deadline” to begin advancing unilateral Israeli annexation of parts of the West Bank, one of the chief annexation scenarios considered by the Israeli government awaiting a “green light” from U.S. President Donald J. Trump, is a proposal to annex the Jordan Valley.[4]

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West Bank Annexation Resource Page - Including Action Alerts and Recently Added Editorials

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APN COVID Update #12 - "Israel's second wave: can and will it be contained"

For most of the month of May, Israel had fewer than 50 new coronavirus cases daily and by the end of the month numbers were reduced to single digits. Then localized outbreaks, particularly linked to schools, began to bring back the threat of the virus. Israel is now undeniably into its second wave, with the number of daily new cases reaching over 300 for the first time since April 23rd. Over the course of the pandemic, three measures have emerged as key in controlling the spread of COVID-19: testing, contact tracing and lockdowns. Israel was among the top countries in the world on these three fronts, which largely explains the management of the first wave. How will these measures stand up to another increase in cases?

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News Nosh 6.29.20

APN's daily news review from Israel - Monday June 29, 2020


Quote of the day:

"It will not happen overnight, and it will be done gradually over years, but the path is clear and one-way: a fundamental change in the character of the state and a change in the nature of the Israeli economy. Partial annexation will create a new dynamic. Israel will not only lose its Jewish character, but also its economic and social character."
--Former CEO of Finance Ministry, David Brodt, writes about the implications of Israeli annexation of the West Bank in Yedioth. See translation in Commentary/Analysis below.*

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