APN's Ori Nir at Haaretz: Palestinian resistance shouldn't mean shutting out Israelis


We Israelis often complain that 'there is no one to talk to.' But for many young Palestinians, Israelis are a lost cause - and anti-normalization means there is less interaction than ever to prove this wrong.

By Ori Nir

I recently met with a group of about a dozen young reporters and photojournalists from the West Bank. I asked them whether they had any contacts with Israeli journalists and was shocked to hear they did not. I told them that when I covered Palestinian affairs for Haaretz in the 1980s and '90s, Palestinian journalists were my primary sources - and my good friends. Back then, journalists on both sides of the Israeli-Palestinian divide sought contact with each other, first and foremost because they thought their readers needed and wanted to know about their neighbors.

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This week, Alpher discusses the seemingly significant high-level developments and statements regarding both the Israel-Arab peace process and Iran, against the backdrop of Israeli-American relations, how does the American security plan or "thoughts" challenge Netanyahu's security concept regarding the Jordan Valley, what is the significance of Obama's mention of a framework agreement as a negotiating outcome, what is the significance of Netanyahu's linkage of Iran and the two-state solution at the Saban Forum, and thoughts on Nelson Mandela's support for the Palestinians and consistent criticism of Israel.

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News Nosh 12.09.13

APN's daily news review from Israel

Monday December 09, 2013


Quote of the day:

"The contemporary Israeli leader is one of the jailers, not one of the jailed."
--Yaron London writes that Israeli leaders need to look at Frederik Willem de Klerk for inspiration, not Nelson Mandela.**

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News Nosh 12.08.13

APN's daily news review from Israel

Sunday December 08, 2013


Quote of the day:

"I mean Lazar Sidelsky, the lawyer who dared give me, a black intern, a job in the 1950s. He is the only boss I've ever had, a good Jew who would be very happy if the ambassador of Israel paid him a visit."
--Former S. African president Nelson Mandela in conversation with newly appointed Israeli Ambassador Alon Liel upon their first meeting. Liel shares more in a Yedioth op-ed today.**

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Israeli and Palestinian Public Opinion on Negotiating a Final Status Peace Agreement

Anwar Sadat Chair for Peace and Development / Program for Public Consultation / United States Institute of Peace (December 6, 2013)
Findings showed that both Israelis and Palestinians are pessimistic about the negotiations and the long-term prospects for a peace agreement (48% of Israelis and 47% of Palestinians said that they believed a peace agreement will never be reached). Only a few express optimism that US mediation efforts will bring an agreement in the next year (4% of Israelis and 11% of Palestinians). Both Israelis and Palestinians express remarkably low confidence that their negotiators will get the best possible deal (24% of Israelis and 31% of Palestinians) and that American mediators will try to negotiate a fair deal (28% of Israelis and 28% of Palestinians). PDF >

Kerry: The US Submitted Security Ideas to Advance Israeli-Palestinian Negotiations

kerry_briefing_186x140.jpgSecretary of State John Kerry confirmed today that General John Allen, The Obama administration's special security envoy to the Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations, briefed Israeli and Palestinian leaders on the perception of the US regarding security arrangement on the way to achieving a two-state solution as well as the security regime that would characterize a future Palestinian state.

Speaking to reporters at Israel's Ben Gurion airport, before leaving the region back to the US, Kerry said that Allen's briefing was based on an analysis produced by the US security team that General Allen heads.

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News Nosh 12.06.13

APN's daily news review from Israel

Friday December 06, 2013


Quote of the day:

"Israel has nuclear weapons and it an obligation to hold a public and courageous debate about them. Enough with the ambiguity."
--Former Knesset speaker Avraham Burg declares what every other Israeli can't or won't.**

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Press Release: May Mandela's Legacy Inspire Leaders of Israel and its Neighbors to Make Peace


Americans for Peace Now (APN) mourns the death of Nelson Mandela, an iconic leader and an inspiration for peace-seekers worldwide.

APN's President and CEO Debra DeLee said: "Nelson Mandela demonstrated that peace and reconciliation are possible even in the most intractable conflicts, even when hope for resolution seems distant. Mandela has shown that with enough resolve and courage, bold leaders can do what is the unthinkable. 

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Play a Part in History

Mik Moore & Leonard Fein

Dear Friend of Israel,

Peace Now again?

No, not again: Peace Now still. Indeed, in words we rarely allow ourselves to use, Peace Now, now more than ever.



Because, however halting it may be, there is movement in the direction of peace between Israel and the Palestinians.

Both Secretary of State Kerry and President Obama have made it clear, publicly and in private, that success depends on the existence of an active "constituency for peace."

Americans for Peace Now is a critical part of the constituency that Secretary Kerry and President Obama have in mind. They turn to us for counsel on both the broad outlines and the delicate nuances of advancing a two-state solution to the chronic conflict, as do hundreds of members of Congress, senior officials at the State Department and influential opinion and news publications. They turn to us knowing that APN is there, ready to connect key players, here and in Israel.

In Israel, Peace Now (Shalom Achshav) is the country's largest peace movement. Peace Now's Settlement Watch Project and its director, Hagit Ofran, are recognized worldwide as the authorities on settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem. This expertise has led to a growing demand from Israelis who want to see the settlements up close, resulting in fifteen Shalom Achshav volunteers leading educational settlement tours.

Hagit Ofran

This year, Peace Now launched "Peace at the Bar," a series of briefings by experts and politicians on the current peace efforts, proving very popular with young people across Israel. And Peace Now's legal program this year boasted a number of successes in court, against illegal settlement outposts and in support of Palestinian land-owners who are trying to protect their property rights.

The recent Pew Center study of American Jews found that 61 percent believe that a way can be found for Israel and an independent Palestinian state to coexist peacefully, even though about half do not think the current Israeli government is making a sincere effort to bring about a peace settlement. And a 44 percent plurality say the continued building of Jewish settlements in the West Bank hurts the security of Israel.

We'll take those numbers - and build on them. They are testimony to Peace Now's Settlement Watch project, and to APN's success in countering the extreme right's anti-two-state propaganda.

We do that work by educating America's pro-Israel community, as well as policy-makers and policy-shapers in Washington. This year for example, APN distributed thousands of copies of our "They Say, We Say." This publication takes common arguments put forth by peace skeptics and opponents and provides authoritative answers from the pro-Israel, pro-peace APN perspective. It is available to you on APN's website here.

And recently, we launched a vast online research center - among the largest of its kind - an intellectual treasure trove for students and faculty, and for all Middle East peace enthusiasts, activists and curious minds. You can access it at peacenow.org/researchcenter.html.

In order to achieve a two-state solution, which is a necessity if Israel is to remain democratic and Jewish, there must be a constituency for peace.

That is why we turn to you now and ask, with urgency, that you renew or start your support for our work. Now, more than ever, it matters. Your tax deductible contribution will support APN as we educate and assert the merits of a two-state solution and how the occupation has become a land-grab, not a matter of security for Israel.

Put most simply: You have the chance, through your support of APN, to play a part in history. May ours be the generation that witnesses, at long last, a final status agreement between Israel, the Palestinians and the rest of the Arab world. And may you not be merely a witness to that great day, but among those who help it dawn.


Leonard Fein      Mik Moore

P.S. Israel's achievements are astonishing - in science, technology, agriculture and medicine. To all of Israel's great achievements, we are determined to add one more: A negotiated settlement that ends the occupation and provides security and democracy for Israel and the Palestinians.

LEONARD FEIN is a writer and teacher. In 1974, he founded Moment magazine, and served as editor and publisher for 13 years. In 1985, he founded Mazon: A Jewish Response to Hunger, and in 1996, he founded the National Jewish Coalition for Literacy. His book Israel: Politics and People was a required text in all Israeli universities for 10 years, and thousands of his articles and essays have appeared in dozens of newspapers, magazines, and journals. He writes a syndicated OpEd column for the Forward and is a longtime member of APN's Board of Directors.

MIK MOORE, an APN Board Member, is recognized as one of the leading digital media campaign strategists in the United States. He develops online campaigns for social change nonprofits, leaders in the philanthropic community and elected officials. Mik co-founded the pro-Obama Super PAC responsible for many of the most viral videos of the 2012 and 2008 campaigns, including The Great Schlep and Let My People Vote with Sarah Silverman. Mik earned a law degree from Georgetown University Law Center and a BA in History from Vassar College. He lives in New York City with his wife, Deborah, and their two children.


News Nosh 12.05.13

APN's daily news review from Israel

Thursday December 05, 2013


Quote of the day:

"I want a homeland that does not require the occupation of another people in order to maintain itself."
--Former Shin Bet chief Yuval Diskin slams the prime minister for putting Iranian nukes ahead of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.**

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