News Nosh 10.16.13

APN's daily news review from Israel

Wednesday October 16, 2013


Word of the day:

-- "That extra bit of patience nobody has. As in, 'I so don't have the hosseleh for this silly media war between Rohani and Netanyahu. Don't they know neither the Israelis nor the Iranians have any hosseleh left for another war?'" Ilene Prusher writes a Farsi phrasebook for the Israeli Prime Minister.**

Front Page News:


Yedioth Ahronoth

  • Teva froze the dismissals
  • He is still missed // Eitan Haber - national day for remembering Yithak Rabin
  • Mystery of the death in the plate - Restaurant manager died after eating risotto: allergy or poisoning?
  • Kofix effect: Prices of coffee dropping
  • Emigrating to us: Meet the opposite direction: Germans who chose to live in Israel
  • State Comptroller report: This is how in Israel they decide about new taxes...


Israel Hayom


News Summary:
Palestinian Authority returns to a plan to advance international recognition of a Palestinian state, Habayit Hayehudi threatens to leave the government coalition if concessions are made to the Palestinians and an Iranian official speaks to Maariv in Geneva at the start of talks over Iran's nuclear program. Israeli papers are unimpressed by Iran's new offer, Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu hints at a pre-emptive attack on Iran and Haaretz's Chemi Shalev shares interesting highlights from the mainly right-wing Conference of Presidents.

Maariv's Asaf Gabor writes that Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas' trip to Europe was meant to strengthen the bloc that supports unilateral recognition of a Palestinian State as well as a boycott of settlements. Abbas, he writes, is even considering turning to the UN to upgrade Palestine's status there. (NRG Hebrew)
Pro-settler Habayit Hayehudi leader Naftali Bennett said that his party would quit the government if Israel made concessions in negotiations with the Palestinians, NRG Hebrew reported. Speaking during an election campaign tour yesterday, the economy minister said that negotiations with the Palestinian "are right now all talk. The moment there will be real danger we will not only leave the government, but we will lead a battle against compromises." (NRG Hebrew)

The Iranian spokesman at the nuclear talks told Maariv, "No one is talking about war. Only Israel." (NRG Hebrew) Indeed, Netanyahu made today's headlines when he quietly threatened Iran saying, "Israel has learned never to rule out preemptive strikes."  Iran presented a new offer at the talks, about which Abdulfazel Amuni, the spokesman for the Iranian delegation to nuclear talks, told Maariv's Gideon Kotz: "The participants in the discussions were impressed that the new Iranian offers are very different from the previous plans that Iran presented. They want to move forward. No one made any threats." Indeed, there were reports of progress and cautious optimism following the first day of talks. EU Foreign chief Catherine Ashton even Tweeted about it. But the Israeli papers were unimpressed, noting that as part of the new Iranian offer, Iran wants recognition of its right to continue to enrich uranium - and it does not agree to surprise visits by inspectors.
Meanwhile, Haaretz's Chemi Shalev wrote an interesting piece from the Conference of (Jewish) Presidents. Not only did former president George W. Bush speak and the UN's Ban Ki-moon announce a visit to Auschwitz, but the newly installed Israeli Ambassador to the US Ron Dermer "saluted" Malcolm Hoenlein, the right-wing Executive Vice President of the Conference - and the man who has become identified with it, on behalf of the Israeli government and said that his would be "the first face on a Jewish Mt Rushmore." And former U.S. Undersecretary of State and Ambassador to the UN John Bolton proposed that the Conference be awarded next year's Nobel Peace Prize.

Quick Hits:

  • Rabin's son urges leadership to take initiative - In ceremony marking 18 years to murder of Yitzhak Rabin, his son says government must take initiative to bring end to conflict. Peres says Rabin felt 'national interest is ensuring Israel's future.' (Ynet)
  • Judge slams police for demeaning tasered settler - Yitzhar resident Boaz Albert - who was tasered by police, chained himself to his house - was released from arrest; Judge claims police acted with prejudice. (Ynet)
  • Video: Palestinians throw stones, soldiers leave - IDF soldiers encounter Palestinian demonstrators near village of Anata, retire from scene. Incident documented, posted on social media. IDF: Clip was edited, soldiers were replaced by others who dispersed protestors. (Ynet)
  • Israel army reforms child arrest methods - Israel's army agreed to test alternative treatment for Palestinian children it arrests in the West Bank following international pressure, in the wake of a 2013 UNICEF report that described mistreatment of (Palestinian) children in Israeli prisons as "widespread." (Maan)
  • Palestinian enters West Bank settlement - Days after West Bank murder, Palestinian found in settlement; residents asked to remain indoors. (Ynet)
  • Terror tunnel extension found near Gaza-adjacent Kissufim - In special operation by Gaza Division, IDF exposes hidden barrels of explosives in burrow of tunnel found last year. (Ynet)
  • Masses visit Rachel's Tomb on day of her death - Tens of thousands visit her tomb, beginning Monday night. Police and Border Police increased presence to and near the grave and the IDF was on alert on the Palestinian side (of the wall) to prevent stone and Molotov cocktail throwing. (Israel Hayom, p. 25)
  • Large swaths of Israel's airspace closed due to military drill - Entirety of the south of Israel closed to all domestic and international air traffic; flights redirected to Jordanian border due to operations. (Haaretz)
  • Hamas, Fatah leaders in Eid phone call - Leaders of rival Palestinian factions Fatah and Hamas spoke via telephone on the eve of the Muslim Eid al-Adha holiday, stressing the need for reconciliation. (Agencies, Maan)
  • Starting next year: Children from Iraq to study at school in Israel - First high school of its kind to be established in Kfar Hayarok to prepare children from Moroco, Egypt and the Palestinian Authority, as well as 10 Israeli students, for the international Baccalaureate. School to be called Eastern Mediterranean International School. (Maariv, p. 18)
  • Russian official: Arafat did not die from polonium poisoning - Russian experts found no traces of deadly substance in body of Palestinian leader, head of Russia's Federal Medical-Biological Agency says. (Agencies, Haaretz)
  • CBS: In Israel, largest number of Muslims reside in Jerusalem - Some 35% of Jerusalem residents are Muslim, largest Muslim population in an Israeli city, Central Bureau of Statistics reports. Next largest Muslim populations in Nazareth, Umm al-Fahm. (Ynet)
  • CBS: Twice as many children poor in Israel as in Europe - Central Bureau of Statistics reports that percentage of people at risk of being poor in 2011 was 31% compared to 17% in EU. (NRG Hebrew and Ynet)
  • Three North Koreans received political asylum in Israel - Populations Authority: In last four years 566 refugees received asylum out of 11,000 requests. (Maariv, p. 18)
  • 'Foolproof' biometric system prints duplicate passports - Boy's photo appears on his document and his brother's. (Haaretz)
  • Son of deceased Nazi criminal suggests burial in Israel - Four days after former SS officer Erich Priebke died, his burial is denied by Italy, Argentina, Germany. Meanwhile, his son makes provocative remarks, suggesting criminal be buried in Israel. (Ynet)
  • Missing millionaire's Jerusalem homes being put up for sale - Brazilian Guma Aguilar, who mysteriously disappeared last year, owned close to 30 properties in the capital; two are for sale including a spectacular Old City apartment overlooking the Western Wall. (Haaretz)
  • To ward off hunger, Syrian clerics condone eating cats, dogs - The animals are considered unfit for human consumption according to Islam, but clerics issue fatwa due to conditions in war-torn country, Al Arabiya reports. (Haaretz)
  • Syria first lady pledges to stand by husband - Syrian state television broadcast clip of Asma Assad saying she stood by her husband, did not flee war-torn country, as was reported. (Agencies, Ynet)
  • Is Hamas to mend ties with Assad?  Hamas' Deputy Politburo Chief Abu Marzouk says Khaled Mashal was wrong to support Syrian opposition, doesn't rule out possibility of renewing ties with Damascus. (Ynet)


Like a lamb
When a lamb costs 2000 shekels - a monthly salary of an employee in the Palestinian Authority - the Palestinians in the (West Bank) territories are not rushing to celebrate Eid al-Adha - Feast of the Sacrafice - according to the rules of the ceremony. Because of the closing of the tunnels (by Egypt), the situation in Gaza is much worse: instead of meat, they are filling their plates with rice and vegetables. (Asaf Gabor in Maariv's daily 'Magazine')
**The Farsi phrase book that Netanyahu should own
Iranians have been making fun of Netanyahu's ignorance about the realities of life in Iran after he said they were banned from wearing jeans. Picking up a little bit of Persian slang might help. (Ilene Prusher, Haaretz)

The Amona complex (Haaretz Editorial) The illegal West Bank settlement outpost has become a symbol of the state's march toward a messianic, anti-Zionist dream. 
Israel's schizophrenia (Kobi Niv, Haaretz) Has the country's illness passed the pathological threshold or can it still be treated? 
The lesson that wasn't learned (Avraham Tirosh, Maariv/NRG Hebrew) Leniency toward the criminal who wanted to thwart the policy of democratic rule with a gun, and largely succeeded, is becoming widespread in some circles.
Ultimately, Israeli leftism is based on one's view of the occupation (Uri Avnery, Haaretz) To the left, peace isn't merely a formal political framework but a profound process of reconciliation that requires each side to show respect for the culture, tradition and history of the other side.
The coming Knesset calculus (Dan Margalit, Israel Hayom) It is actually the opposition that is providing Netanyahu with a safety net on diplomatic issues, to protect him from opponents within his own coalition.
Every possible cliche (Morly Frishman, Haaretz) The Netherlands' near-total support for Israel can no longer be taken for granted, as a public interview with President Shimon Peres during a recent visit made clear.
We will not forget - what we learned from the murder (Rabbi Yuval Cherlo, Yedioth) Cherlo asserts that the assassination of Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin (which occurred on the 12th of the Hebrew month of Chesvan, today on the civil calendar this year), "seared into Israeli society the awareness of the cost that internal debates threaten to claim," and also, "taught us that there is no substitute for conducting and deciding controversies in the framework of the law and without violence." Cherlo opposes both, "the waves of attempts to exploit the murder," as well as, "the waves of attempts to deny its severity."
Electing the mayor of Jerusalem (Isi Leibler, Israel Hayom) If Jerusalem is to maintain the positive changes introduced since 2008 and continue moving forward with hope, Jerusalemites must get out and vote for Nir Barkat. 
When the New York Times went to bat for the one-state solution (Sara Hirschhorn, Haaretz) The New York Times brought the one-state debate into the mainstream by publishing Ian Lustick's controversial one-state op-ed - but the actual protagonists of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict aren't really engaging.
Winston Netanyahu (Yechiam Weitz, Ynet) Only thing Israeli PM has in common with late British leader is fondness for expensive cigars.
Israel's turn to ask: Do all Jews need to live in Israel? (Alissa Breiman, Haaretz) A strong Diaspora is a Zionist imperative. It's time Israel caught up with the rest of the world and recognized this.
Half-measures with Iran will mean more isolation for Israel (Emily B. Landau, Haaretz) A final deal - good for Israel and good for the world - would have to cover all of Iran's key nuclear capabilities.
Israel wants West to let Iran sweat, but Netanyahu will compromise if needed (Amos Harel, Haaretz) Jerusalem believes Iran is in hurry to escape sanctions, and that at nuclear talks time is on big powers' side.
Jeans diplomacy (Erez Linn, Israel Hayom) Netanyahu's recent engagement with average Iranians is no less important than his courting of world leaders.
Iran's choice: nuclear program or regional influence (Zvi Bar'el, Haaretz) As nuclear talks get going in Geneva, Iran and the U.S. must decide what they are willing to risk and what they hope to gain.
Don't fall for it (Boaz Bismuth, Israel Hayom) As nuclear talks begin again in Geneva, Iran will continue its sweet talk so that it can remove sanctions while keeping its nuclear program intact.
Iranian FM's new charm offensive - on skeptical domestic audience (Barak Ravid, Haaretz) Mohammad Javad Zarif is spearheading Iran's talks with the world powers in Geneva, but he also needs to watch his back in Tehran.


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