News Nosh 11.12.13

APN's daily news review from Israel

Tuesday November 12, 2013


Quote of the day:

"Appointing Lieberman as foreign minister is like planting an explosive device in the peace process."
--Chairwoman MK Zahava Gal-On before the swearing-in ceremony Monday.**

Front Page News:


Yedioth Ahronoth

  • 14 days in Iran - Yedioth correspondent reports: This is how Iran looks under Rohani's rule
  • US Secretary of State Kerry: Iran foiled achieving an agreement
  • Fear: Cactus fruit endangered by new insect from abroad
  • "I got cancer because of the Arrow missile" - Former officer sues IDF to recognize him as handicapped
  • Teva pays - Pharmaceutical giant to transfer 2 billion shekels of 'trapped earnings' to state
  • First Ethiopian family receiving children needy of a warm home


Israel Hayom

  • Israel: Deal? Only on our conditions - The dispute continues
  • Iran in (economic) trouble? Khamenei is worth $95 billion
  • (Lieberman) returns to the government
  • End to the (gas) masks
  • The sabras (cactus fruit) are in danger
  • Sad end: Cancer defeated Harel
  • Chaos in Philippines
  • Teva Pharmaceuticals to release 'stranded profits' - and pay 2 billion shekels


Peace Talk Highlights:
The Knesset's Left is in an uproar over the return of MK Avigdor Lieberman as Foreign Minister, while the US plans to turn a page in its relations with the outspoken right-wing settler politician. The Palestinians say they prefer no peace agreement over a bad one and say a third Intifada could break out if it weren't for the Palestinian Authority.

**Avigdor Lieberman, the man who opposes peace negotiations and has accused Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas of waging "diplomatic terror," was sworn in yesterday as Foreign Minister, almost a year after he resigned from the post, due to a court case against him. Meretz party Chairwoman MK Zahava Gal-On said before the swearing in ceremony that "appointing Lieberman as foreign minister is like planting an explosive device in the peace process." Interestingly, Arab MK Ahmed Tibi expressed his pleasure with Lieberman's return to the powerful public role. Former US Secretary of State Hilary Clinton had practically banned him, but the present Secretary John Kerry plans to turn over a new leaf with Lieberman, writes Haaretz's Barak Ravid.
As far as the Palestinians are concerned, they prefer no peace deal to a bad peace deal. Top Palestinian negotiator Mohammed Shtayyeh said there would be no more temporary deals with Israel: "We are not looking for an extension of the interim period...In the absence of political will from the Israeli side to take the negotiations seriously, we believe that it is better not to reach a deal than to reach a bad deal." Shtayyeh said Israel is using negotiations only as a tool to avoid international pressure "while on the ground it continues its colonization plans rather than peace plans."
Maariv's Asaf Gabor spoke with senior officials in the Palestinian Authority who told him that it's "the Palestinian Authority that is preventing a third intifada." The sources say that the PA leadership led by President Mahmoud Abbas has ordered to put down any clashes during the negotiations with Israel. Recent attempts to harm Israelis were, in their words, "the initiative of individuals who ran into difficulties that we caused them in organizing their efforts."  [This matches what Israeli security officials have said. - OH] One Palestinian source told Gabor: "The (Palestinian) public no longer believes that shooting or suicide attacks will lead to something." (NRG Hebrew)

Iran-related News Summary:
While Israel tries to play down the rift between it and the US over Iran, the US and Iran now take turns exchanging accusations of who was responsible for the failure to sign an agreement, the Israeli papers reported also noting that Iran, meanwhile, signed an agreement with the IAEA.

Kerry told reporters on Monday that it was the Iranians who made a last-minute decision not to sign the deal [meaning that France was not responsible for thwarting the agreement, as previously reported - OH]. His Iranian counterpart, Mohamed Zarif, answered via Twitter: "Mr. Secretary, was it Iran that gutted over half of US draft Thursday night? and publicly commented against it Friday morning?" A Western diplomat told AFP that more time was needed for an Iran nuclear deal, but that talks have not failed, despite lack of breakthrough.
Haaretz noted that Netanyahu was attempting to minimize the brewing Israeli-U.S. crisis over negotiations on Iran's nuclear program."Our common goal, that of the U.S., Europe, China, and Russia is to prevent Iran from developing a military nuclear capability... "I think it's time to improve the deal," Netanyahu said Monday in a tone contrasting sharply with that of the day before when he said Iran got "the deal of the century and the international community got a bad deal." Kerry had responded to Netanyahu those words saying, "The time to oppose [a deal] is when you see what it is." US Ambassador to Israel Dan Shapiro also played down the diplomatic rift between the US and Israel in an interview to Channel 2, saying that Israel and the US "never disagree on the big strategic goal."

Meanwhile, the UN nuclear agency and Iran struck a deal on the inspection of Iran's  Arak reactor. This was despite the demand by the six world powers negotiating with Iran that Tehran completely suspend construction at Arak. And Israeli Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon said Iranian President Hassan Rohani was elected to be Iran's 'pretty face.'

Quick Hits:

  • Israel implicated in shooting death of Palestinian bystander - A report released by Israeli human rights group B'tselem on Monday casts "grave suspicion" that a Palestinian killed in Qabatiya on Oct. 31 was shot dead with live ammunition fired by Israeli forces, despite their denials. (Maan)
  • Palestinian woman pulls knife on soldiers in West Bank - A Palestinian woman approached an IDF outpost in the Tapuach Junction in the West Bank, and pulled a knife on one of the soldiers. Soldiers subdued the woman and took her into custody for questioning. (Ynet)
  • In rare operation, Palestinian police arrest criminals in Israeli-controlled areas near Jerusalem - In unprecedented operation, Palestinian Authority forces arrest dozens of criminals in neighborhoods around Jerusalem. Since the separation barrier was built in the early 2000s, the Israel Police has stopped operating in these areas. (Haaretz)
  • Clashes in Jerusalem as Israeli forces shut down Arafat event - Israeli forces and intelligence officers stormed a sports club in the Silwan neighborhood of Jerusalem and dispersed Palestinians who were commemorating the ninth anniversary of late president Yasser Arafat's death. (Maan)
  • Israel demolishes Jerusalem home while family trying to demolish it - Bulldozers belonging to the Israeli municipality on Tuesday morning demolished a Palestinian family's mobile home in the Beit Hanina neighborhood of Jerusalem after the family had already begun trying to disassemble and remove it to avoid fines. (Maan)
  • Thousands mark Arafat's death across the West Bank - Thousands of people took to the streets across the West Bank on Monday to mark the 9th anniversary of Yasser Arafat's death. (Maan)
  • Israeli forces fire tear gas into 2 schools in Beit Ummar - Israeli forces fired tear gas canisters into a school and a kindergarten north of Hebron Monday after protestors nearby threw rocks at an Israeli patrol in the area while marking the death of Yasser Arafat nine years ago. (Maan)
  • Israel detains 2 children at Nablus checkpoint - Yaqout Mohammad Jawhar, 13, and Alaa Mustafa Hanini, 12, were detained during clashes at the checkpoint in Nablus Monday. (Maan)
  • Defense establishment to recommend stop to gas mask production - Defense minister to present cabinet with recommendation to stop production, distribution of ABC kits. Defense source cite reasons: Israel achieved deterrence, Syria dismantled chemical arms. (Ynet)
  • Yesh Atid party: "We'll get most of the opposition to appoint Ofer Shelach as chairman of the foreign affairs and defense committee" - The swearing-in of Foreign Minister Lieberman opened the battle for the [powerful - OH] post he left. Yesh Atid said if Netanyahu won't approve the appointment of MK Ofer Shelah, the party will act through the Knesset Committee. (Maariv, p. 1/NRG Hebrew)
  • Massive 'Question of Palestine' mural unveiled in Nablus - 25 Palestinian artists had been working on giant mural measuring about 1,000 square meters for over a month. It was unveiled in Nablus Monday. (Maan)
  • The calm after: Jewish communities around Gaza Strip growing - Since Operation Pillar of Defense, two thousand new families have moved to the area. The community atmosphere and the tax benefits make people forget the fears over the security situation. (Maariv, p. 1/NRG Hebrew)
  • Study: Half of Israeli children experienced abuse or neglect - Haifa University professors interviewed some 10,000 children over three years, discovered 48.5% of Jewish children, 67.7% of Arab children were victims of abuse, neglect. MK calls on authorities to 'wake up' as study shows gap between reports, reality. (Ynet)
  • Belgium: Man armed with knife arrested outside Israeli embassy - Armed Belgian arrested at embassy entrance hours before Iranian national arrested for lurking across street, spying on embassy. (Yedioth/Ynet)
  • Israel simulates cyberattacks from unknown sources - Tel Aviv University's Yuval Ne'eman Workshop for Science, Technology and Security prepares for simulated cyberattack with Israeli and U.S. security officials. Former NATO chief Wesley Clark plays American president. Attack comes from allied computers. (Israel Hayom)
  • Israel may become first non-European member of nuclear research group CERN - Israeli scientists confident CERN, which confirmed the existence of the 'God particle,' will vote them in. (Haaretz)
  • Israelis who emigrate should not be denigrated, say officials - At a meeting of the Israeli American Council in Jerusalem, government ministers and officials have warm words for their countrymen who live abroad. Elkin: We are happy to embrace Israeli-Americans. (Israel Hayom)
  • 101-year-old olive trees uprooted in Galilee - Members of Kibbutz Kinneret, who did not know of the planned uprooting, are trying to get the trees replanted (Haaretz)
  • Maariv to join freebie newspaper market with free evening daily - Publisher Shlomo Ben-Zvi aims to bring the beleaguered daily back to life, with 35,000 free copies distributed in the initial rollout phase. (Haaretz)
  • Hamas has a new face, but the message is the same - Hamas' first spokeswoman is Isra Almodallal, 23, who worked for Iran's Press TV. She refers to "Israel" rather than the "Zionist entity," but says Hamas' bad image is because of Israeli media, not suicide bombings. (Israel Hayom)
  • Palestinians: Egypt decided to 'put an end' to cross border tunnels - A Palestinian told Egyptian paper Al Hayat that he believes the Egyptian government has decided to put an end to cross-border tunnels between Egypt and the Gaza Strip. (Ynet)
  • Iran's Supreme Leader Khamenei controls $95 billion empire - Investigation uncovers vast financial organization built on property seizures while evading international sanctions. (Agencies, Haaretz)


Renounce theft of Bedouin land (Haaretz Editorial) Cabinet decision to demolish Bedouin village and build a new town on its land constitutes a new stage in Israel's becoming an ethnocracy. 
Israelis don't scare easily, Mr. Kerry (Moshe Arens, Haaretz) Abbas is in no position to commit to ending the conflict. 
The heart of the conflict (Dr. Haim Shine, Israel Hayom) It is a good thing that there is an Arab Knesset member who admits without hesitation or fear that the true struggle is over control of the Temple Mount.
How not to teach the Holocaust to kids (Don Futterman, Haaretz) Israeli kids don't need to be exposed to the Holocaust through the brutal images that featured at my American Jewish summer camp - but there's no avoiding the subject here either.
Obama's risky Iran policy (Dr. Gabi Avital, Israel Hayom) Pushing Israel toward launching a military strike against Iran is an immediate byproduct of the U.S. president's "responsible" policy. 
Netanyahu, back off the cheap Iran-Palestine analogy (David Landau, Haaretz) The prime minister's demagogic lumping together of the (existential) Iranian threat and the (unmilitarized) Palestinians only weakens support for his policy on Iran. 
Backstabbed (Richard Baehr, Israel Hayom) A second Obama term was bound to lead to this. The president now has no need for his many liberal Jewish "friends." It is a new world for U.S.-Israel relations. 
Why the world is not ready to hug Netanyahu (Jeffrey Goldberg, Bloomberg/Maariv/NRG Hebrew) Netanyahu may be overreacting, but his fears aren't absurd. So why are the prime minister's complaints being ignored?
Is end of gas mask era in Israel at hand? (Gili Cohen and Amos Harel, Haaretz) Dismantling of Syria's chemical arsenal over the past month has gradually reduced the threat of chemical attack on Israel.
Bad for the Jews (Eitan Haber, Yedioth) "The bad news in our region is that Washington has apparently reconciled with the existence of Iranian nuclear installations. Haber speculates that the Obama administration would suffice with an agreement that pushes off any Iranian attainment of a nuclear bomb until after it has left office even though Israel maintains that, "This is a recipe for an existential threat to Israel in the future." As to the disagreement between Jerusalem and Washington, the Haber writes that, "Under previous Israeli governments, envoys would have been dispatched to the American leaders and would have resolved everything in secret talks. For many years, only the Defense Ministry and IDF archives would have known what happened. Today, the disagreement is public and whoever does not stitch up the good relations with the US on Friday feels it on Saturday. The American President would have to be made of steel in order to not make the Israeli Prime Minister pay for doing almost everything to see his rival, Mitt Romney, take his place in the White House. The problem is that this price is liable to be paid by all of us."
Open letter to John Kerry (former Israeli ambassador to Canada Alan Baker, Israel Hayom) After listening to you declare repeatedly over the past weeks that "Israel's settlements are illegitimate," I respectfully wish to state, unequivocally, that you are mistaken and ill-advised.
Iran's nuclear road map raises specter of unpleasant surprises (Zvi Bar'el, Haaretz) Agreement with AEA makes no mention of military complex at Parchin, where Iran is suspected of having conducted test explosions in the past.
Difficult. Daring. Doable. (Amos Regev, Israel Hayom) Never underestimate the capabilities of the IDF; it has achieved the impossible before • If it took Iran 20 years to get its nuclear program to where it is today, who is to say it can recover in a year? Yes, we can strike Iran. And yes, we can succeed. 
Humiliating initiation rite for the Egyptian chief of staff (Zvi Bar'el, Haaretz) Egypt is gearing up for another presidential election, but the number of possible candidates is even greater than the number of revolutions.
Wake up - Why (liberal authors) David Grossman and Amos Oz need to hug Netanyahu (Ben-Dror Yemini, Maariv/NRG Hebrew) Yemini notes that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is claiming that the projected agreement with Iran, "is not just appeasement, it is fraud...It does not endanger peace for Israel, but for the world...Anyone with a brain knows that Netanyahu is right. It is not a matter of Left and Right, but of common sense and a willingness to see things as they are." Yemini believes that the US, "prefers a short-term settlement, which will become a danger to world peace in the long-term...It is not that Iran will drop the terrible bomb the day after it is made. The problem is that with a nuclear capability, Iran will become a major power. The chance for regime change will be zero. The Gulf states will be in danger. Hamas, which, again, has been trying to draw closer to Iran, will become much stronger. The regional order will become dark and threatening. Hezbollah will become the ruler of Lebanon and Syria." Yemini calls on Israelis, however much they support or oppose the Prime Minister on other issues, to rally around him on this one in an effort to forestall the above scenario.



Interview with filmmaker Ken Loach: 'There is no home but politics'
Ken Loach is an English director and political activist who has for years utilized cinema as a tool of social critique, tackling social issues at home as well political oppression and injustice abroad. He is a tireless advocate for the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel across Europe. (Interviewed by Frank Barat in Maan)
Israel uses art and films for this campaign called "Brand Israel." Art is therefore political- even if some artists respond to the BDS campaign by saying that they are not politicians but only singers, musicians, actors. As far as you are concerned, all your films are political. So, in your opinion, can art be a tool to fight oppression?
Yes. The basic point is this: whatever story you choose to tell or images you choose to show, what you select indicates what your concerns are.


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