News Nosh 11.17.13

APN's daily news review from Israel

Sunday November 17, 2013


Quote of the day:

"The housing minister and his reckless move on the matter of building in the settlements is sabotaging and sabotaged the Israeli interest..."
--Science Minister Yaakov Peri warns of the beginning of the end of the alliance between Yesh Atid and Habayit Hayehudi.**

Front Page News:


  • US prepared plan against collapse of sanctions
  • The third Lebanon War - The Iran-Syria-Hezbollah alliance is getting stronger and changing the IDF's preparations // Amos Harel
  • Interior Ministry harshening its policy: Deport foreigners while they await residence
  • Government expected to approve today change to infiltration law that will allow imprisoning migrants for a year
  • Yehiel Kadishai, who was Menachem Begin's right hand, died
  • Academic meets first-graders and school that was an educational lab
  • 1/4 page ad: MACHSOM WATCH: Israel Defense Forces throws tear gas and stun grenades at demonstrators in Kufr Qaddum (an incident that took place in the Territories and was not reported on in the media). Every week for the past two years residents of Kufr Qaddum demonstrate against the closure of the ancient road that leads from their village to (the city of) Nablus, (closed) because of its closeness to the settlement of Kadumim. Last Friday, security forces ambushed 4 children between the ages of 6-9 and threw tear gas and stun grenades on them, then tied them up and interrogated them for an hour. During the action, 8 adults and seven children were severely harmed by the gas. Nevertheless, the demonstrators continued to demonstrate.

Yedioth Ahronoth

  • "The government of Israel sent me (to sue the Chinese bank) and ran away"  -  said the father of Daniel Woltz, who was murdered in an attack. Israel announced officially: We will not aid the law suit against the terror bank
  • "I slept with the singer, we smoked drugs together"
  • Yehiel Kadishai is no longer // Eitan Haber parts from Menachem Begin's confidante
  • The UN translator who dared to speak the truth - "Why are they only condemning Israel?" she asked at the assembly
  • Star dust - Girls who got into bed with men they admired pay the price
  • Blowing up the bubble - What's included in the new housing reform that the government will approve tomorrow?


Israel Hayom


Peace Talk Highlights:

A crack in the coalition over peace with the Palestinians, a rebuke from the US President's National Security aide and a warning that a recent anti-Palestinian attack could spark terror in the West Bank.

**The 'unbreakable' alliance between Yesh Atid and the pro-settler Habayit Hayehudi may not stand the test of peace talks. Yesh Atid's Yaakov Peri, who serves as Science Minister, said that "On the matter of negotiations with the Palestinians, there is a great gap between us and Habayit Hayehudi. Sooner or later the split will be taken to the cabinet's desk and then one of the parties will have to abandon the cabinet." Peri, a former security service chief, said the Israeli right and Habayit Hayehudi party was sabotaging efforts to advance the talks with the Palestinians and pointed to the recent announcement of 20,000 settler homes by Housing Minister Uri Ariel.  "The housing minister and his reckless move on the matter of building in the settlements is sabotaging and sabotaged the Israeli interest, in the most sensitive timing - with the US, Europe and the Palestinians...It is true damage to Israel's most sensitive corner."

Settlement construction was also a source of criticism from US National Security Advisor Susan Rice, who blamed the recent construction announcements for some of the recent tensions between Israel and the Palestinians.
A Senior IDF officer told Haaretz that the arson attack last week on a home in the village of Sinjil in the West Bank could lead to 'new motivation for terror' on part of the Palestinians. "If a child had been seriously injured in the incident, it could have "raised new motivation for terror," the officer, serving in the West Bank, told Haaretz the day after the incident. Five Palestinians residing there, including children, suffered from smoke inhalation. So far, the army does not know where the perpetrators came from, and whether they are residents of the area.
Iran-related News:
Maariv reports on a dispute between US Secretary of State John Kerry and chief US negotiator Wendy Sherman over a deal with Iran and easing sanctions, Haaretz reports on a US attempt to lobby governments against the collapse of sanctions, and a Kuwaiti paper reports that US President Barack Obama won't talk to Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu due to a Tweet. Meanwhile, Israel gives the French President a particularly friendly reception.

According to Maariv, Kerry and top US negotiator Wendy Sherman are in a dispute over easing sanctions. Sherman believes easing sanctions could be irreversible and that an interim deal could give legitimacy to Iran's nuclear threshold capability, Eli Bardenstein reports. Iran nuclear program negotiations will resume Wednesday during which Kerry will be visiting Israel. If a deal is ready to be signed while Kerry is in Israel, he will fly to Geneva. Bardenstein wrote that a deal is expected to be signed by next week.
Haaretz writes that if a preliminary agreement with Iran is indeed signed that will limit its nuclear program in exchange for economic relief, the US will launch a diplomatic campaign to prevent the sanctions regime from collapsing. Haaretz's Barak Ravid writes that the estimates by Israel and US on how much cash will enter Iran after sanctions relief differ to the tune of at least $10 billion.
On Friday, Netanyahu tweeted that against a 'bad deal' with Iran. The US State Department responded saying that the alternative to diplomacy is war. A Kuwaiti paper, Al-Jarida, reported that Netanyahu's remarks about a 'bad deal' have worsened the tensions between Israel and the US over Iran nuclear program negotiations. According to the report, Netanyahu tried to call Netanyahu recently and Obama refused to accept the call and had him referred to Kerry. (NRG Hebrew) Netanyahu also gave an interview to CNN's State of the Union, where he said that Iran's nuclear program threatens the 'survival of my country' and even the 'best of friends can have different opinions.' It will be aired today. Israeli President Shimon Peres warned against an Israeli feud with the US over Iran, noting that "There has not been an Israeli request which the Obama administration has not responded to."

Interestingly, Strategic Affairs Minister Yuval Steinitz "has offered a solution," writes Maariv. In an Op-Ed published in the British 'Financial Times' newspaper, Steinitz calls on the international community to allow Iran to produce electricity in its nuclear reactors, but to prevent it from enriching uranium. And a UN watchdog report says that Iran moved quickly to prevent a large increase in its nuclear stockpile, in what may be attempt not to undermine nuclear talks.

French President Francoise Hollande arrives today in Israel and the papers noted that Israel is preparing a "particularly friendly reception" (Maariv's words) for him, following his firm position against the deal with Iran. His visit to Israel follows a visit in the Palestinian Territories and a meeting there with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. Talks with Israel will focus on Iran and to fortify France-Israel ties.
Battling over its image, the Foreign Ministry has signed a cooperation agreement with the 'Face of Israel' organization, "which will become our international PR and lobbying branch across the world," writes Yedioth's Itamar Eichner. "This is a type of 'Jewish PR reconnaissance' unit that will operate with funding of Jewish millionaires and non-Jews who love Israel," continues Eichner. The government will have basic stock in the new organization, so that it will be able to control the organization's agenda and make it work according to the government's agenda. "The Israeli PR (hasbara) budget is $3 compared to $200 million in the Palestinian Authority," say Foreign Ministry people. In the meantime, 10 million shekel (about $3 million) have been budgeted for the beginning of its activities: 4 million from the Foreign Ministry and 6 million from Russian Jewish millionaires. The Foreign Ministry expects the organization will have a budget of 40 million shekels within 1.5 years. "If this deal works right, it will be a real revolution," said Deputy Foreign Minister Zeev Elkin. "It's a world mission."

Quick Hits:

  • Witnesses: Israeli troops cuff Palestinian children - Israeli troops in the West Bank detained four Palestinian children aged five to nine for more than an hour Friday with their hands cuffed. The children are from the northern West bank village of Kfar Qaddum. A military spokesman said the incident was being reviewed by the military. (Maan)
  • Israeli forces assault 7 family members in their home near Hebron - Israeli soldiers tried to raid the house of Mohammad Mahmoud Abu Dawoud, and when family members tried to stop them from entering the house the troops beat them severely, including the elderly parents. Troops also destroyed furniture throughout the five-story apartment building the family lives in. (Maan)
  • Israel to confiscate Palestinian villagers' lands near Nablus - The Israeli government on Saturday announced a decision to confiscate Palestinian lands owned by dozens of villagers from Yatma, Osran, and Qabalan, south of Nablus. (Maan)
  • Environmental Protection Agency presents: Israel within the '67 borders - Housing Minister Uri Ariel found a book written in cooperation with the ministry , called "Urban Empowerment Laboratory," which shows a map of Israel without Judea and Samaria. In fact, it shows an exact map based on the borders of '67. (Maariv, p. 4/NRG HebrewPhoto)
  • Israel, EU down to the wire over settlements loophole - The EU must sign a scientific cooperation agreement with Israel this week. Will the wording exclude Judea and Samaria, or will the EU relent and sign a compromise formulation? Naftali Bennett says will not sign if Judea and Samaria are not included. (Israel Hayom)
  • Report: Israel arrests 70 Palestinian workers - Israeli forces overnight Thursday arrested 70 Palestinians working in the country illegally, Israeli media said. (Maan)
  • Arab-Israeli business owners split over illegal Palestinian workers - Following dozens of arrests after murder of Eden Atias, Arab-Israeli business owner says economic advantage of illegal aliens mounts security fear, while others express fear, understand danger. (Maan)
  • Police: IDF has 30,000 incidents a month - After the murder of soldier in Afula, a dispute has risen over responsibility of entry of (Palestinians) people without permits. The police attack: "When an intruder crosses the fence it is the responsibility of the IDF." (Maariv, p. 6/NRG Hebrew)
  • Palestinian with fake permits reside in Israel - It is suspected that a network of Israeli counterfeiters used graphic elements to change visa refusal decisions into authorization permits, and sold them to Palestinians. (Maariv, p. 6/NRG Hebrew)
  • Israel files UN complaint over Palestinian Authority incitement - Israeli Ambassador to the U.N. Ron Prosor asks Security Council to condemn the Palestinian Authority. Series of recent terror attacks that have left three IDF soldiers and one officer dead are the result of growing Palestinian incitement, he says. (Israel Hayom)
  • Italy donates 3 million euro for PA initiative in Area C, Jerusalem - Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah announced a 3 million euro contribution from Italy to the Palestinian Authority. (Maan)
  • Video: Hebron Bedouins demand freedom of movement, infrastructure - Bedouins in a southern West Bank village enumerated the difficulties of life under Israeli occupation during a Ma'an reporter's visit last week. (MaanVIDEO with English subtitles)
  • New telephone system enables bugging of prisoners' calls - Despite claims to the contrary and a High Court ruling due in March 2014, the system is already recording calls placed by prisoners. (Haaretz)
  • A rare moment of truth at the UN, caught on microphone - Nine resolutions against Israel pass in one day at U.N. General Assembly meeting. Interpreter, believing microphone to be off, says Israel is the only focus when bad things are happening all over the world. Awkward laughter ensues. (Israel Hayom)
  • Leading candidate for Attorney General: Shai Nitzan - One person to be chosen from four candidates tomorrow. Justice Minister Tzipi Livni expected to support Attorney General Weinstein's recommendation of Shai Nitzan. [The settlers will not be pleased with this choice - OH.] (Yedioth, p. 10)
  • Key Knesset committee paralyzed as politicians battle over its chair - Haredi politicians harshly criticize Shas leader Aryeh Deri for his alleged support of Yesh Atid MK Ofer Shelah to become new head of Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee. Deri associates: Deri has not decided yet whom he will support. (Israel Hayom)
  • Pollard's operator: U.S. promised to free spy after 10 years - I agreed to supply incriminating details on Pollard because I knew the U.S. and Israel had a deal, says former minister Rafi Eitan. (Haaretz)
  • Ex-envoy gets teaching gig - Yeshiva University has appointed Israeli diplomat and politician Danny Ayalon as the Rennert Visiting Professor of Foreign Policy Studies for the upcoming spring semester. (Haaretz)
  • NYT marks Brig. Gen. Herzl Halevi as future chief of staff? Upon leaving role as Galilee Division commander, New York Times releases extended article on top officer. 'Philosophy is more practical than business administration,' says Brig. Gen. Halevi, who claims 'no war or operation' could solve northern front. (Ynet)
  • Israel blocks witness in US anti-terrorism case - State drops anti-terrorism suit it filed against Bank of China via bereaved families, draws criticism it is bowing to pressure. (Ynet)
  • Jaffa: Man shot to death in broad daylight - 30-year-old man with no criminal record is shot to death while standing near grocery store in Jaffa. Police examine whether shooting was made from passing vehicle or from close range. (Ynet)
  • Israeli army's drone commander: Surgical strikes were key in Operation Pillar of Defense - One year following the IDF operation in Gaza, the army commander discusses the IDF's use of unmanned aerial vehicles and the implications for the drone operators on the ground. (Haaretz)
  • Haniyeh meets with Gaza factions to discuss national 'reconciliation' - Gaza Premier Ismael Haniyeh met with leaders of various political factions in Gaza on Saturday, with the absence of Fatah representatives. (Maan)
  • Hamas to re-open Ma'an Bureau in Gaza - The government in Gaza decided on Saturday to re-open Ma'an News Agency's bureau in the Gaza Strip after four months of closure. (Maan and Ynet)
  • Gaza Strip full of corrupt millionaires, says Palestinian official - Unusual London rally highlights inter-Palestinian split as activists blame West Bank leadership for Gaza suffering. (Agencies, Haaretz)
  • Albanian 'no' deals blow to Syria chemical weapons plan - Rejection surprises many; no immediate indication where the U.S. or Russia might look next to dispose of thousands of tons of toxic waste. (Agencies, Haaretz)
  • Egypt gives Russian dignitaries a red carpet welcome - Retired Egyptian military general says Egypt may sign a $2 billion deal with Russia for the purchase of 24 MiG fighter-jets as well as anti-tank missiles and an air defense system. Russian analyst: Egypt cannot remain a hostage to the U.S. forever. (Israel Hayom)


A 'special problem': How Israel is transplanting the Bedouins of Hiran
'It's important for us that Israeli citizens understand the magnitude of the injustice,' says resident of Umm al-Hiran, who faces eviction in face of new construction. (Haaretz)
All the dirt comes out (to the Arabs)
This is the face of Arab communities (Photo of garbage): Garbage piled high in streets, mountains of garbage - rich with carcinogens - burning, and overflowing sewage. The economic collapse of Arab local councils left the treatment of waste and sewage at the bottom of the list of priorities. (By Aviv Lavi, Maariv/NRG Hebrew)
Interactive photo journal:  One year after Pillar of Defense, houses are rebuilt but lives remain shattered
A year has passed since the Gaza war, but citizens of Israel and the Gaza Strip are yet to get their lives back on track. (Haaretz)


Stop the discriminatory East Jerusalem park plan (Haaretz Editorial) The state insists on establishing a grandiose park of dubious archaeological importance without considering welfare and quality of life of locals who are Arabs.
Iran, at high noon (Nahum Barnea, Yedioth/Ynet) Historians have been discussing America's decline for 50 years. They may not have been wrong - just premature.
Will Hollande be strong on Middle East peace? (Sefy Hendler, Haaretz) After blocking a deal with Iran, the French president will receive a hero's welcome in Israel. But France might still suggest its own peace plan. 
The best man for the job? Abe Foxman for U.S. secretary of state (Gideon Levy, Haaretz) With his rabidly pro-Israel stance, there is only one person that Jerusalem can consider an 'honest broker.'
Conflict can be managed (Ophir Falk, Ynet) Israel, PA can agree on certain issues, agree to disagree on currently unsolvable issues.
Netanyahu needs to hear what the U.S. public is saying: 'No more wars, no more Middle East' (Amir Oren, Haaretz) The spat between Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and U.S. President Barack Obama over Iran shows how out-of-touch Israel's leader is with world opinion.
Losing faith in Uncle Sam (Dan Margalit, Israel Hayom) America wants to return to Persia's rich markets and bazaars. The nuclear bomb threatening Israel, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and the Gulf States is only slightly interesting, if at all. 
J Street responds: Don't undermine chance for 'good deal' on Iran (Dylan Williams, Haaretz) Alan Dershowitz is wrong: The only way to ensure Iran doesn't go nuclear is the verifiable, negotiated settlement that the U.S. administration is seeking.
The rules of the bazaar (Dror Eydar, Israel Hayom) The countries of the Middle East have refined the art of bargaining to such a degree that Western diplomats are no match for them. When the West acts too eager, Iran raises its price. Will we ever learn?
Putin controls Middle East (Dr. Yaron Friedman, Yedioth/Ynet) As US stalls in regaining Sunni trust, Israel may grow closer to Saudis to prevent bomb.
Who's a 'thorn in the butt' and who's a fig leaf (Yossi Sarid, Haaretz) Netanyahu is not a liar - it's just that his truth is updated like the daily interest on the gray market.
Between Washington and Jerusalem (Dan Margalit, Israel Hayom) While Washington shares Israel's concerns over the Iranian threat, the Obama administration is far more sympathetic to the Palestinian demands, as presented by PA President Abbas, than it is toward Israel's positions.
Iran on the table: How to look like a military attack on its nuclear facilities? (Amir Rappaport, Maariv/NRG Hebrew) The Prime Minister could have pushed a different deal through that would have neutralized Hezbollah and kept the Iranian nuclear program frozen. That did not happen, a bad agreement is approaching and the military option is back on the agenda. It seems that Israel did not act enough in recent years to make the distinction between a civilian Iranian nuclear program and the military project and to promote the relationship between sanctions relief and reducing the scope of Hezbollah's weapons, at least. However, in retrospect, the worst mistake was made by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during his appearance at the United Nations last year: Netanyahu put (with the aid of the famous bomb) the red line on Iran so that it does not cross the threshold of 250 kg of uranium enriched to a level of 20% or more - the amount and percentage that indicate military intentions.
In praise of a thorny prime minister (Yoel Marcus, Haaretz) If Netanyahu goes down in history, it won't be because of achieving peace with the Palestinians but because he kept the world preoccupied with something that is out of his league: preventing Iran from producing nuclear weapons.
American Jewry, where is your voice? (David M. Weinberg, Israel Hayom) Alas, American Jews have sloughed-off Netanyahu's attempt to rouse them into active opposition of Obama's bad Iranian deal. 
American Jewish leaders only care about themselves (David Landau, Haaretz) American Jewish leaders aren't showing concern for Israel and ordinary Israelis when they badmouth the country's dark Orthodox 'fiefdom.' Their only concern is themselves.
Is Kerry aiming for an Israeli coalition crisis? (Mati Tuchfeld, Israel Hayom) Despite several political clashes within the government this week, the biggest threat to the coalition right now seems to be U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry's radical statements about the bleak future that awaits Israel if the peace talks fail.
Then they came for the mobsters: The case against detention without trial (Aeyal Gross, Haaretz) First Palestinians, then asylum seekers and now members of crime rings; the ease with which individuals can be jailed without due process proves how far we are from upholding human rights.
Hezbollah threat wanes, but rising new players in Lebanon present Israel with new challenge (Amos Harel, Haaretz) Despite the atmosphere of mutual deterrence, the Shi'ite group's alliance with Tehran and Damascus, the Syrian war and the entry of new regional forces could spark a conflagration.
Anatomy of a crisis (Prof. Abraham Ben-Zvi, Israel Hayom) The U.S.'s eagerness to strike a deal with Iran says a lot about the way the Obama administration deals with the Israeli-Palestinian crisis. The American president might cross a few more red lines before he is done.
Iran's strategy of 'constructive ambiguity' (Zvi Bar'el, Haaretz) By not defining their red lines, Iranian leaders are able to inch toward a deal with United States and placate domestic hardliners.
Ben-Gurion's legacy: Defiance of US pressure (Yoram Ettinger, Israel Hayom) Ben-Gurion was aware that fending off pressure constituted an integral part of Jewish history, a prerequisite for survival and long-term growth.
Payback: The real cost of the Iraq War is a nuclear Iran (Jonathan Rynhold, Haaretz) The doomed war's ultimate price has been to puncture the West's resolve to counter a nuclear Iran.


Interview with Lia Tarachansky: a former settler documents the Nakba
Lia Tarachansky is an Israeli journalist and the director of the film, "On the side of the road," which tells the stories of Israeli fighters who perpetrated the Nakba, or ethnic cleansing of more than 750,000 Palestinians from their homes in what became Israel in 1948. Born in the Soviet Union and raised in a West Bank settlement, Tarachansky made the film as part of an effort to break the myths many Israelis hold regarding Israel's founding and history of dispossessing Palestinians. (Interviewed by Frank Barat in Maan)


Prepared for APN by Orly Halpern, independent freelance journalist based in Jerusalem.