"I'm hanging up now" -- Remembering Sara Ehrman

If you knew the remarkable Sara Ehrman, who died in 2017 at the age of 98, you know that there never was and will never be anyone like her.

Sara was an influential, lifelong advocate for Israel, Jewish, and progressive causes. She was a Capitol Hill legislative staffer, Democratic Party political operative, activist for Middle East peace, and much, much more.

A founder and long-time board member of Americans for Peace Now, Sara was fiercely devoted to bringing about a peaceful conclusion to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. APN benefited mightily from her steadfast support, and has established The Sara Fund in her memory. This fund will support programs in the US and Israel that foster intergenerational engagement to advance peace between Israel and its Palestinian neighbors, particularly focusing on women.

Go HERE to donate to The Sara Fund

Sara's life reads like an historic novel, full of twists and turns, adventure, tragedy, suspense, and mystery. She could delight with stories—about meetings with kings, travels with presidents, trips with her sons or "girlfriends," all of them fascinating, all of them funny.

Many of us know the story of a young tenant of Sara's named Hillary Rodham, and how Sara drove her to Arkansas to be with her boyfriend Bill. Sara loved to tell how she spent the full two-day drive passionately trying to convince her not to go -- “Hillary, for God’s sake, he’ll just be a country lawyer down there!”

One of Sara's very early mentors told her that there would never be peace for Israel until there was peace with the Palestinians. She embraced that idea and committed much of her life to working toward a two-state solution that would secure Israel’s future as a Jewish state and a democracy. She helped to establish Americans for Peace Now, and was the driving force behind developing its Washington-based government relations program. She remained an active APN board member and leader until her death.

Sara had elegance, eloquence, and the mouth of a sailor, and her efforts and charm touched all her who knew her. Most importantly, she made a difference in the world.

Thank you for joining us in supporting Sara’s legacy with a donation to The Sara Fund

P.S. Sara Ehrman was a close friend and inspiration to Debra DeLee, who recently stepped down as APN President and CEO after 21 years. Below is Debra's very personal note and encouragement to support The Sara Fund.

P.P.S. Please join us for an event honoring Debra on October 24th in Washington, D.C., and/or help honor her with a donation for a tribute ad (we know Sara would!)

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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: 10.7.18

APN's daily news review from Israel
Sunday October 7, 2018
Quote of the day:
"This is no longer a slippery slope ... This is what is called a very steep slope. The Israeli security agency is becoming a problem of democracy."
--Former Shin Bet chief Ami Ayalon spoke out on the growing phenomenon of foreigners and left-wing Israelis being questioned at Israel's borders.*

You Must Be Kidding: 
When an Arab-Israeli man complained to police that his vehicle was set on fire early Friday morning outside his family home in Netanya, the police sent the man to do a lie detector test and did not investigate his claim. The family believes the arson was a racist attack against them.
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APN In The News: October 6 -October 12

APN to Israel's Government: Let Lara Alqasem In! (10/11/18)

APN calls on the government of Israel to permit entry into Israel to Lara Alqasem, an American of Palestinian descent who received a student visa from an Israeli consulate in the US to undertake a master’s program at Hebrew University.

Alqasem was detained upon arrival at Ben Gurion Airport and has been held by Israeli authorities for over a week pending appeal of the order to deport her. The basis for the detention apparently was information published about Alqasem by the Canary Mission, a shadowy website that seeks to intimidate critics of Israel...

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APN In The News: September 22-October 5

Ha'aretz: "Jewish Federation of San Francisco Says No More Donations to 'Canary Mission' Blacklist" (10/3/18)

“It is extremely disturbing that a major mainstream American Jewish organization is bankrolling the activities of the Canary Mission... a shadowy enterprise which seeks to intimidate college students who do not fall in line with its right-wing perspective on Israel,” said Debra Shushan, director of policy at Americans for Peace Now.

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Ynet: "Amona outpost activist convicted" (9/28/18)

In 2014, Oved was sentenced to one year for a “price tag” attack including hateful graffiti sprayed on the building of Peace Now activist Hagit Ofran.

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Thirty-four Senators and 112 House members recently released letters to the Trump administration calling on it to restore humanitarian funding to Palestinians, which President Trump has slashed in order to pressure the Palestinian leadership to acquiesce to his unannounced “peace plan.” As Israeli security officials have indicated, this funding is not only essential for Palestinians, it is also critically important for Israeli security.

Did your elected officials sign? Tell them where you stand.

The funding in question was passed by Congress, with bipartisan support, and included aid for:

  • UNRWA, the UN agency which provides critical assistance to Palestinian refugees;
  • Humanitarian programs administered by the US Agency for International Development (USAID) in the West Bank and Gaza;
  • The East Jerusalem Hospital Network which provides essential care for many Palestinians in East Jerusalem, the West Bank, and Gaza; and
  • People-to-people conflict mitigation programming which promotes coexistence, particularly among the next generation of Israelis and Palestinians.

Congress allocated this funding because it serves the US national interest in a peaceful solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. In the face of Trump’s outrageous decision to cancel all non-security-related funding that benefits Palestinians, Congress must speak out.

Take action to thank your elected representatives if they signed these letters, or take them to task if they did not.

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Legislative Round-up: October 4, 2018

Produced by the Foundation for Middle East Peace in cooperation with Americans for Peace Now, where the Legislative Round-Up was conceived

1. Bills, Resolution, & Letters
2. Hearings
3. On the Record

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APN's Dr. Debra Shushan delivered address at Haverford College

Dr. Debra Shushan, APN Policy and Government Relations Director, was recently in the Philadelphia area where she was the featured speaker at a J Street Philadelphia / J Street U event at Haverford College and guest at parlor parties. In her September 30 talk at Haverford entitled "Off the Table: Israeli-Palestinian Peace in the Trump-Netanyahu Era," she surveyed recent developments that threaten prospects for peace - from the rise of illiberal democracy in the US and Israel, to President Trump's efforts to take key issues off the negotiating table - as well as the work that APN and Shalom Achshav in Israel are doing to push back against this tide.

A J Street U leader called the talk "phenomenal" and welcomed further collaboration with APN. 

Educational advocacy is an important part of APN's work. If you are interested in inviting someone from APN's Speakers Bureau to your university, synagogue, church, parlor event, or other gathering, please contact apndc@peacenow.org

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News Nosh: 10.4.18

APN's daily news review from Israel
Thursday October 4, 2018

Quotes of the day:
"I'm not saying I won't fight anymore. I'm saying I don't want any more wars. What I want is an end to the siege."
--Hamas Politburo Chief, Yahya Sinwar, gave a rare interview to an Israeli newspaper.*

“He states positions that are exceptionally dovish. Essentially, he has bypassed Abu Mazen (Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas) from the left."

--Yedioth military analyst Yossi Yehoshua wrote about Sinwar's interview.*
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PeaceCast #57: News Nosh - A Talk with Orly Halpern

Orly Halpern is an American-born, Jerusalem-based freelance journalist who edits News Nosh, Americans for Peace Now’s roundup of the daily news from Israel.

She prepares the English language review of Israel’s Hebrew media early in the morning, Israel time, taking advantage of the seven-hour time difference between Jerusalem and America's East Coast so that News Nosh subscribers can scan the Israeli news of the day with their morning coffee and bagel.

Subscribe to APN's News Nosh for free

This episode goes much beyond News Nosh. Orly talks about her career in journalism, about Israeli journalism and about Israeli society.

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