News Nosh 01.07.14

APN's daily news review from Israel

Tuesday January 07, 2014

 

Quote of the day:

"Even a very stupid prime minister who makes peace will get positive press. But a prime minister who is an idiot will not make peace."
--Former prime minister Ehud Olmert sends a message to Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu.**



Front Page News:

Haaretz

Yedioth Ahronoth

  • The next storm: Law of negotiations over Jerusalem - The new bill that will embarrass Netanyahu
  • "We aren't angry at the parents of the murderer" - Parents of murdered youth, Naor Atias, invite parents of boy who stabbed him to mourning
  • A border-crossing debate - Thousands of (African) asylum seekers demonstrated yesterday in front of the foreign embassies in Tel-Aviv in order to raise world awareness of their demands to receive rights in Israel
  • I am also an infiltrator // (famous Israeli poet) Natan Zach writes poem in support
  • There's a limit/border // Yoaz Hendel
  • Rolling Stones likely coming to Israel
  • Rabbi Susan Silverman, sister of comedian Sara Silverman, shoots in all directions
  • Big troubles - After losing IDB, Nochi Dankner is expected to sit trial for securities fraud

Maariv

Israel Hayom

  • "They came illegally and they are slandering us" - Interior Minister Gideon Saar in special Op-Ed on the (African migrants and asylum seekers') protests and general strike
  • We have no other country // Dror Eydar
  • The law is on our side, but not every sentence // Prof. Aviad Hacohen
  • Arnona - for walls, steps and parking? - Knesset finance committee to discuss today important change to municipal taxes
  • The law was approved: Up to five years prison to anyone who disseminates sexual photos and videos without permission
  • Hospital director: "Sharon's condition worsens daily, the danger to his life increased"
  • More trouble: Indictment against Dankner in stocks fraud affair

 

Peace Talk Highlights:
The protests by the African asylum seekers and migrants demanding rights remained a top story in Israeli newspapers along with more information coming out about what was discussed with US Secretary of State John Kerry over peace talks. Meanwhile, Yedioth reported that Likud MK Miri Regev has prepared a bill that, if passed, will make it impossible to negotiate over Jerusalem and Palestinian refugees. Arab Israelis protested the plan to make them part of the Palestinian Authority, but a Jordanian official said Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu agrees to the idea. No one except Ynet reported that while Kerry was still here, Israel published tenders for more settlement homes.

Netanyahu said that Israel would not evacuate places outside settlement blocs like Hebron or Beit El "that are important to the Jewish people" as part of peace deal. He blamed the Palestinians, saying it was their unwillingness to recognize Israel as a Jewish state that prevented a peace agreement. But then he added, "Even if there were some minimal commitment to recognize the Jewish state, there's still no guarantee that the incitement against us would change. [This may suggest that Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has agreed to a limited recognition - OH]. And after saying, "There's a problem that the Palestinians are there, and I have no intention of removing them. It's impractical and inappropriate. I don't want a binational state, and I don't want them as either citizens or subjects," he ended by saying: "Currently, we have no solution."

In a meeting yesterday with opposition leader, Isaac Herzog, Kerry surprised the Labor party chief when he said that both Netanyahu and Abbas agreed to significant compromises. However, he also said that the US would not agree to Israel's request to extend the negotiations if there were no positive announcement, according to a London-based Arabic paper. A senior Jordanian representative told the paper that Netanyahu was trying to buy time so he could finish his plan to build 50,000 housing units by the end of 2014 that were approved by the government. But Maariv/NRG Hebrew reported that Kerry said, "If it doesn't happen by the end of March, it appears the US will take a step back and lower its profile on the diplomatic issue."

**Meanwhile, former prime minister Ehud Olmert said that a prime minister who does not make peace "is an idiot," Finance Minister Yair Lapid told his party that Israel has a 'real opportunity' for a peace deal with the Palestinians that it cannot miss while right-wingers launched an Internet and YouTube campaign mocking Kerry called: 'John Kerry's Solutions Ltd,' NRG Hebrew reported. The campaign has a website, http://johnkerry.co.il, that shows Kerry's 'friends' saying, "We don't have good solutions, but we have to do something."

Israeli Arab leaders are livid that Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman's population swap proposal is being brought back to life. "We are unwilling to act as pawns in the service of Lieberman and the Israeli right,' Israeli Arab MK Ahmed Tibi told Haaretz. Ynet interviewed Israeli Arab citizens, who said they don't want to be part of Palestinian state. But a Jordanian official said Netanyahu was prepared to exchange Israel's Arab citizens and the land underneath them for settlement blocs. 
 
None of the main Hebrew papers reported that Israeli authorities published the building plans for 272 more housing units. Peace Now said the tenders were published for units in the settlements of Ofra and Karnei Shomron on Sunday and that construction could begin in coming weeks, Ynet reported.
 

Quick Hits:

  • Tulkarem area man crushed to death inside Israeli checkpoint - Adel Muhammad Yakoub, 59 from the northern West Bank village of Balaa died as a result of extreme overcrowding inside the Ephraim/Taybeh checkpoint. Some 10,000 Palestinian workers cross the checkpoint daily. The victim left behind a wife and seven children, aged 11-16. (Maan)
  • 1 year prison to man who sprayed graffiti on home of Peace Now activist - Dor Oved was sentenced to one year in jail for puncturing tire of Palestinian car and for spraying "Death to Arabs" and "Dead Hagit RIP" at the home of Peace Now activist Hagit Ofran. (Israel Hayom, p. 11)
  • Palestinian farmers clash with settlers in south Hebron hills - Four people were injured on Monday during clashes between Palestinian farmers and Israeli settlers in the south Hebron hills after settlers attacked a group of farmers tending their land. One farmer, Sabir al-Adra, was hit in the face with a steel pipe. (Maan)
  • Settlers attack school, water reservoir near Nablus - Six settlers from Yitzhar attacked a school and water reservoir in the Nablus village of Urif early Monday before clashing with local Palestinians. (Maan)
  • Pipe bomb thrown near Bethlehem; one wounded - Hours after grenade thrown at IDF base in Bethlehem, a pipe bomb was thrown near Rachel's Tomb, lightly wounding an Israeli. (Ynet)
  • Palestinian admits to stabbing 9-year-old in West Bank settlement (to steal weapons) - Police and Shin Bet say motive was criminal, IDF believes it was nationalist. (Haaretz)
  • Teen killed by Israeli sniper posed 'no threat' to soldiers - Israeli authorities have provided no evidence that Wajih Wajdi al-Ramahi, 15, fatally shot in the back in December by Israeli forces posed "any threat to life that would justify such a killing," Human Rights Watch said. (Maan)
  • Israeli forces injure 2 with rubber bullets in Beit Ummar - Clashes started after two Israeli military vehicles raided the area and fired tear gas and rubber-coated steel bullets at people. "These actions by the occupation forces aim to prevent farmers from reaching their lands in Ein al-Bayad area near the Gush Etzion settlements," said Mohammed Awad. (Maan)
  • Israeli forces detain Palestinian journalist near Ramallah - Israeli forces detained Muhammad Omar al-Dik, 24, after raiding his home in Kafr Nima village west of Ramallah on Monday morning. The number of Palestinian journalists currently jailed in Israel to 12. (Maan)
  • Stolen IDF weapons turning up in mafia wars, army says - In-house theft of combat materiel increased last year. (Haaretz)
  • Hamas leader in Gaza announces moves toward ending rift with Fatah - Haniyeh: 'We are doing this out of an understanding of the sensitive situation the Palestinian issue is in.' (Haaretz)
  • Hamas says Fatah members can return to Gaza - Hamas prime minister Ismail Haniya reached out to West Bank rivals Fatah on Monday, saying its members would be allowed back into Gaza, in efforts to promote Palestinian reconciliation. (Maan)
  • Hamas, Fatah resume talks secretly - Fatah spokesman's statement emerged following reports claiming Hamas and Fatah have already reached agreement on a unity government. (Maan)
  • Dahlan is trying to threaten the reign of Abu Mazen - Former Fatah strongman Mohammed Dahlan, who was dismissed by Abbas, is setting up from his location in Qatar an armed force in the West Bank that will operate against the Palestinian security forces. (Maariv, p. 6/NRG Hebrew)
  • Researcher says Knesset demoted him because of his political views - The Israeli says parliament wanted him to alter studies on migrants 'solely to appease right-wing activists.' (Haaretz)
  • Israeli Foreign Ministry blasts UN agency for 'unhelpful' remarks on African migrants - UNHCR representative criticizes Israel's present stance on migrant workers as Africans stage three-day protest. (Haaretz)
  • Professors: Rightist views shouldn't keep economist from getting honorary doctorate - University of Haifa denies Nobel-winning economist Robert Aumann an honorary doctorate because he is seen as too right-wing. (Haaretz)
  • Israeli students and IDF soldiers collect coats and blankets for Syrian refugees - Project organizers have collected 100kg of equipment to help people across the northern border keep out the winter cold. (Ynet)
  • Glenn Greenwald: There are more Snowden documents on Israel - Continued imprisonment of Jonathan Pollard attests to the hypocrisy of the U.S. administration, Greenwald tells Israel's Channel 10. (Haaretz)
  • Egyptian army shoots 2 Palestinians crossing through Gaza tunnel - Egyptian border police chased two Palestinian youths as they exited a tunnel from the Gaza Strip last Thursday, and subsequently opened fire on them. The youths were taken under heavy guard to Rafah General Hospital. (Maan)


Features:
Jewish and Arab 10-year-olds hear the other side has a story too
The patriarch Abraham/Ibrahim is the focus of a project in the Bible Lands Museum, initiated by director Amanda Weiss. (Haaretz)
January 3, 1919: This Day in Jewish History / Zionists and Arabs ink first accord
Chaim Weizmann and Emir Faisal ibn Hussein worked to realize their peoples' respective aspirations. (Haaretz)

Commentary/Analysis:

Lieberman is a man of his word - when it comes to population transfer (Uzi Baram, Haaretz) It's easy to praise the way Israel's foreign minister has changed some of his positions, but he's still a racist.
In the land of sin and hatred (Nahum Barnea, Yedioth/Ynet) Instead of whining about Palestinian incitement, ministers should discuss state of incitement in Israel.
Just give us our freedom (Munib al Masri, Haaretz) Israel's leaders must drop their narratives of fear and rejection, and embrace President Abbas and his government as true partners for peace.
Why does Livni remain as Bennett's punching bag? (Michal Aharoni, Maariv/NRG Hebrew) Tzipi Livni and her party should leave the government and move to the opposition, for there are no common political views between her and the position of the current government.
Why Palestinian leadership is right to engage in peace talks (British Consul-General to Jerusalem Vincent Fean, Maan) First, to underline the urgent need for an agreement. Systematic settlement expansion is the biggest single threat to the two state solution which is our shared objective. Time is not on our side.
The Jordan Valley: Israel's security belt (Prof. Efraim Inbar, Israel Hayom) Building homes for Jews in E1 and the Jordan Valley is imperative to establishing a defensible line along Israel's eastern border.
Answering Bibi and Libi (Salman Masalha, Haaretz) The answer to Netanyahu and Lieberman needs to come in the establishment of a social democratic front of the Israeli left. The ball is sitting in the court of the two Israeli parties Meretz and Hadash.
End of the last chance (Ziv Lenchner, Ynet) Ariel Sharon was the last right-wing statesman capable of bringing peace to Israel.
Two states for two people? When pigs fly (Moshe Arens, Haaretz) The accord the U.S. is pushing essentially means creating three-plus Palestinian states, without Jews.
Peddlers of illusions (Dr. Haim Shine, Israel Hayom) I cannot understand the former generals who incessantly tell us that if we would only give up and retreat, our enemies would become our friends.
Infiltrators are existential problem for Israel (Noah Klieger, Ynet) As a country constantly struggling for survival, Israel cannot take in the tens of thousands of Africans who cross our borders.
Treat them with fairness (MK Zehava Gal-On, Israel Hayom) Israel is obligated to determine the status of migrants and decipher who deserves refugee status.
A false facade of service (Haaretz Editorial) Many national service volunteers are sent to serve in organizations with very narrow and often ideological interests.

 

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

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