News Nosh 02.06.14

APN's daily news review from Israel
Thursday February 06, 2014

Quote of the day:
"There were cases that reached absurdity. A car with two hilltop youth known to the Shin Bet and the police was caught and inside were all the means used to commit a pogrom, including a fake M-16, axes and knives. The youth in the car did not admit (to doing anything wrong) and were sent home."
--Yedioth security affairs reporter Alex Fishman on how Jewish 'price-tag' attackers were dealt with - but no more.

Front Page News:
Yedioth Ahronoth
  • (Ultra-Orthodox) Draft law - the draft is ready
  • Listen, Elizabeth, I'm the President. I'm sending a plane to bring you here in three hours" - Elizabeth Harley's ex says Harley had romance with Bill Clinton
  • New Yoram Kaniuk (book) without a discount: Authors' law gets underway
Israel Hayom
  • Suspicion: They built on the bribes - Contractors allegedly bribed attorney generals of Rishon L'Tzion and Rechovot municipalities, Adv. Roie Bar, in return for promoting their interests
  • CEO of Teachers' Union, Yossi Wasserman, under house arrest
  • Tales of Bill (Clinton) and Liz (Harley)?
  • Eyal Golan affair: Need to return to proper norms // Dan Margalit
  • How much time does one wait in hospital ER?
  • Sapir Prize to Noa Yadlin. Full price (for books): "Authors' Law" goes into force today

News Summary:
On the peace front, Israel announced the construction of more settlement homes in E. Jerusalem, which the US condemned, as usual. Peace Now said it was 'shameful' at a time when negotiations are in a sensitive stage. The coalition government is increasingly divided over the peace negotiations, with Justice Minister Tzipi Livni slamming the right-wing ministers for their negative comments about US Secretary of State John Kerry and Housing Minister Uri Ariel (Habayit Hayehudi party) saying he will work to remove Yesh Atid from the coalition, accusing its leader, Yair Lapid of harming settler interests. (NRG Hebrew) Meanwhile, the settlers made a new video clip mocking Kerry. Another top story was the first arrest of settlers in price-tag attacks since the changing of a law giving the Shin Bet power to treat the Jewish perpetrators as terrorist suspects. That did not stop the settlers from making more 'price-tag' attacks on Palestinians yesterday after some outposts homes were destroyed. (Also: Ynet and NRG Hebrew and Israel Hayom

**The papers all noted that yesterday, six months after the Shin Bet changed a law allowing them to take off their gloves and interrogate 'price-tag' activists as terror activists, three settlers from Havat Gilad outpost were charged with unprovoked anti-Arab attack. "Price-tag activists got used to burning, destroying, uprooting, and evading the law again and again, but now the Shin Bet is signaling this is over, wrote Alex Fishman in the Friday 'Hamosaf L'Shabbat' supplement days ahead of the indictment. 'Price-tag' is the name the settlers gave to attacks they make on Palestinians and their property and mosques in revenge against the Israeli government and security forces evicting them from their outposts and destroying their caravans. In some cases, the attackers, many of whom are 'hilltop youth' (young settlers who take over Palestinian hilltops and spark friction with the villagers), make 'price-tag' attacks on the Israeli military and there have also been cases of attacks against Arabs in Israel.  The new security order allows the Shin Bet to detain the radical right-wing activists for extended periods with a judge's approval and to prevent them from seeing a lawyer. Fishman writes that the Shin Bet's Jewish unit (i.e. unit for Jewish terror) has had all the means, people and money it needs, but when it comes to translating the intelligence into prevention, the unit fails to show achievements. The problem writes Fishman, is that "all the best intel is worth nothing if it does not have the support of the public, the law and the politicians." Fishman asks whether now the politicians and the judicial system will stop surrendering to the settlers' pressure. "There were cases that reached absurdity. A car with two hilltop youth known to the Shin Bet and the police was caught and inside were all the means used to commit a pogrom, including a fake M-16, axes and knives. The youth in the car did not admit (to doing anything wrong) and were sent home," wrote Fishman. "On the even of decision-making regarding diplomatic negotiations with the Palestinians, this indictment takes on more importance: It shows the borders to these rioters, who plan to blow up any government decision in which there is any deviation from there world view."
Ironically, on the same day as the indictments, settlers made a price-tag attack against an Arab truck driver after Border Police and Civil Administration destroyed settler homes in two outposts. That included the house of the director of the Samaria Settlers Committee in Kida outpost, Sagi Keisler, as well as a number of bungalows used as residences for families in the Geulat Tzion outpost. Keisler accused the government of destroying his house in revenge: "They did a 'price-tag' on my house, except that instead of spraying graffiti on the walls, the Defense Minister sent a tractor and 300 police as revenge for my numerous activities for strengthening settlements," Maariv/NRG Hebrew's settler reporter, Itamar Fleishman wrote.  In response, the settlers threw stones injuring an Arab-Israeli truck driver. The driver lost control and hit a bus, wrote Fleishman.

That explains the attack on Imad Dauwod al-Joulani, 49, who was working with his concrete truck in the area, as reported in Maan. Some 25 Israeli settlers attacked Joulani, beating him with sticks and stones until a nearby 'Russian' driver, who saw the incident, fired a gunshot in the air to disperse them.

Quick Hits:
Settlers cut down 100 olive trees near Nablus - Settlers from Itamar cut down the olive trees in an open area in Wadi Yanoun, which is situated between Awarta and Yanoun villages. (Maan)
Group: Israel demolished 27 Jordan Valley homes in January - Nearly half of those displaced were children and 65 people lived in communities that had been demolished more than once by Israel, Israeli rights group B'Tselem said. (Haaretz+)
Red Cross stops providing emergency tents to (homeless) Palestinians in Jordan Valley - Decision made after officials learn Israeli army methodically keeps tents from arriving at their destination. Decision is a blow to the herding and farming communities who live in the area. (Haaretz+ and Ynet)
Israeli security force official, Palestinian hurt in West Bank clashes in Jordan Valley - Militants throw explosives at Israeli security forces after arrest raid in refugee camp in foothills of Jordan Valley, as violence rises. (Haaretz+)
Delegations visit Ein Hijleh protest as Israeli siege enters 6th day - An archbishop, a European Union delegation, the PA minister of agriculture and an Israeli MK were among the solidarity delegations that visited the tent camp of Ein Hijleh in the Jordan Valley, which was set up to protest against Israeli confiscation policies in the area and recent proposals to annex the Jordan Valley. (Maan)
Clashes erupt as Jerusalem municipality demolishes three Palestinian homes - Demolition teams from the Jerusalem municipality on Wednesday morning destroyed three Palestinian homes and forced a man to demolish his own home in East Jerusalem, leaving 28 homeless and sparking clashes that injured 15 and led to seven detentions. (Maan)
Jerusalem municipality delivers demolition warrants in Silwan - Five families in the Silwan neighborhood of East Jerusalem were give home demolition notices, some that their houses would be demolished within 48 hours. (Maan)
Israeli land authority destroys Bedouin fields in Negev - Tractors plowed and destroyed fields of wheat, barley and other cereal grains that had been planted on lands belonging to the Huzayyil tribe, before moving to nearby Awajan Bedouin village. (Maan)
Witnesses: Israeli forces enter Gaza border area, level lands - Israeli military vehicles and four bulldozers entered the al-Fukhari neighborhood and leveled Palestinian agricultural land. Gunfire was reported in the area by residents. (Maan)
Senior Fatah leaders to visit Gaza Friday - A delegation of four Fatah officials is scheduled to visit the Gaza Strip on Friday to review Fatah's situation in Gaza. Gaza Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh has instructed security forces to accommodate the visit and said that the Fatah officials would be welcome in Gaza as part of creating a positive atmosphere for reconciliation talks. (Maan
Gaza ministry denies ordering arrest of militants firing rockets - Gaza's ministry of interior denied Ynet report that the ministry had ordered security services to arrest militants launching rockets towards Israel, denouncing the rumors as "lies." (Maan)
Arab MKs blast Likud bill, say it sets country’s Christians against Muslims - Sponsor Levin told interviewer that Christians in Israel were Jews’ 'natural allies, a counter-balance to the Muslims.’ (Haaretz+) 
Sapir Sabah visited the Knesset and received a hug from the right - The student who complained about the teacher Adam Verete was invited to the Knesset, and was warmly received by the ministers and MKs from the right. Deputy Minister Hotoveli met with her and wrote: "I'm glad that we have students like her." (NRG Hebrew
The organizers threatened and the tribute evening for Sapir Sabah will take place - After Kiryat Tivon Municipality cancelled the tribute evening for the student who complained against the left-wing teacher Adam Verete, the [radical right-wing - OH] organizers led by former MK Michael Ben-Ari threatened to sue for breach of contract. The dinner will be held as planned. (NRG Hebrew)
In wake of Verete affair, Israeli civics teachers wary - High-school instructors, citing the Adam Verete case and a lack of official support, say they feel embattled and just try to keep their heads down. (Haaretz+) 
Knesset Ethics Committee: "MK Ahmed Tibi dishonored the Knesset" - The Committee decided to condemn (Arab) MK Tibi and MK Jamal Zahalkha due to statements in the discussion held in the Internal Affairs Committee that dealt with the Temple Mount, during which Habayit Hayehudi MK Zevulon Khalfa was called a "fascist and racist." (The article did not say what caused the outburst. - OH[ (NRG Hebrew)
6 Jerusalem Palestinians sentenced to jail, 4 for Hamas links - Israeli court in Jerusalem on Wednesday sentenced six Palestinians from Jerusalem to jail time for various crimes including involvement with Hamas, participation in clashes at the Al-Aqsa compound, and attempting to buy weapons. (Maan)
4 East Jerusalemites indicted for planning terrorist attack - According to indictment, suspects planned to dress up as ultra-Orthodox, shoot hundreds of guests at event in functions hall in Jerusalem Jewish neighborhood. (Ynet
VIDEO / Made in Israel: The new Katana combat vessel - The Katana, named for a samurai sword, will be used to protect oil rigs, ship interception, port security. IAI highlights the craft's reliability, with "no chance of a mishap stopping a mission." (Ynet)
Army investigating psychiatrist's handling of suicidal soldier - Psychiatrist on reserve duty appears to tell suicidal soldier IDF army is a good place for him because it is 'kill or be killed,' in recording that airs on television. (Haaretz+)
PMO: Netanyahu's official, private residences' spending reduced - After scented candles, flower arrangements spark public criticism, PMO claims Netanyahu's expenditure decreased by NIS 800,000 ($221,000) in 2013, as total cost for taxpayers stands at 2.44 million ($688,000). (Ynet
Israel did not properly document property of Jewish refugees from Arab lands - State Comptroller opinion reveals only 14,000 claim forms were filed until 2009. Property rights of those forced to flee Arab states, Iran were not adequately defended by Jewish State's administration. (Ynet)
FIFA's Blatter to visit Israel, Palestinian Authority - FIFA President Sepp Blatter to visit Israel, PA in April to push for closer ties between their football bodies. FIFA hopes two sides will sign a cooperation agreement before world football's member countries meet in Brazil in June ahead of World Cup. (Israel Hayom
Dutch pension fund ABP won't divest from Israeli banks - Large pension fund says Bank Hapoalim, Bank Leumi and Bank Mizrahi-Tefahot have not violated any international laws, so it has no reason to divest. (Haaretz+)
Large French media delegation in Israel - The umbrella organization for Jewish communities in France sent 19 of the leading and most important media people in France to Israel. The delegation will visit the Knesset, universities and various factories and also meet people from the Arab sector. They will also be hosted at the French Ambassador's home. (Yedioth, p. 26)
Israel anti-boycott bill pulled ahead of N.Y. Assembly vote - Bill to cut state funding to academic associations that boycott Israel is withdrawn for reconsideration; speaker says he will re-introduce bill. (Haaretz+)
Amidror: No accident that weapons did not reach Hezbollah - Former National Security Adviser Yaakov Amidror says an Iran-backed Hezbollah is more dangerous than al-Qaida, although both are "very bad."  "We will do whatever is needed to stop" weapons from getting to Hezbollah, he says. (Israel Hayom
Egypt army chief Sisi says he is running for president - In disputed announcement, Egypt's head of military al-Sisi says 'The call (of the people) has been heard everywhere and I will not reject it' but official spokesperson denies report is an official announcement. (Ynet)

Israeli education minister's creed: God, the Holocaust, and the military (Uri Misgav, Haaretz+) The Verete saga shows that as far as the education minister is concerned, there is no place here for those who don’t put Israel's 'holy trinity' before them. 
Thank goodness Likud is in power (Eitan Haber, Yedioth/Ynet) What would have happened had the Yamit region not been evacuated by Begin, had Gush Katif not been evacuated by Sharon, had it not been Olmert who offered the greatest concessions to the Palestinians? 
A victory for transfer (Haaretz Editorial) By despairing of providing emergency shelter to Palestinians in the Jordan Valley, the Red Cross is signaling that Israel's policy of dispossession has gone too far. 
The Verete affair (Yonatan Yavin, Yedioth) The basic truth needs to be made clear to all youth: The gates of the military base are planted in a place where moral solutions of peace, tolerance and dialogue end...
Kahane's singer of choice (Sefi Rachlevsky, Haaretz+) Democracy isn’t a technical system comprised of elections and majority rule, but a worldview that puts human rights, equality among people and opposition to racism at its center.
In the anti-boycott battle, Johansson is fantasy but Kerry is Captain America (Chemi Shalev, Haaretz+) Sexy stars notwithstanding, only Western governments can prevent Israel’s isolation and only a peace process will spur them to do so.
Mr. Kerry, the Israeli economy is no illusion (Hezi Sternlicht, Israel Hayom) America is currently carrying the largest debts in its history, while Israel's debt-income ratio is superb. 
Kerry, Jews were also refugees in '48 (Adi Schwartz, Haaretz+) The Palestinian narrative still sees Israel as a foreign and unjust entity, and only understanding that half of Israel’s residents were displaced from their native countries may lead to acceptance of Israel’s existence.
What if the boycotters don't isolate Israel? (Anshel Pfeffer, Haaretz+) We must combat the occupation because it is wrong for us and our neighbors, not because we may end up losing our savings from it.
Stop talking up the boycott (Jeremy Newmark, Haaretz+) Only a few years ago, anti-boycott activists were cold-shouldered by the Israeli government. Now Israeli ministers have gone to the other hysterical extreme on BDS.
Memo to Jewish groups: You can’t effectively fight BDS if you don’t fight settlements too (Peter Beinart, Haaretz+) Jewish groups’ effort to tar BDS with opposition to two-state solution suffers from fatal flaw: They don’t actively support it themselves. 
Only one side will be blamed (Richard Baehr, Israel Hayom) If and when the peace talks collapse, a narrative is already prepared explaining why the process broke down. And only one side will be blamed.
Could you be a closet anti-Semite? Let the settlers' new 'John Kerry Test' be your guide (Bradley Burston, Haaretz+) The sixth in a series of 'Test Yourself' articles, in which readers are invited to see how they measure up on the major issues of the day.
Inconsistent criteria for 'righteousness’ (Eduardo Eurnekian and Baruch Tenembaum, Haaretz+) Judy Maltz’s opinion piece “Who is ‘righteous’ enough for Yad Vashem” raises a legitimate claim that is shared by many.
Much has changed, but Israel refuses to see (Ari Shavit, Haaretz+) Obama's White House is of a different mold. And Israel, refusing to recalculate its path, is coming dangerously close to a headlong collision.

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