News Nosh 11.10.19

APN's daily news review from Israel
Sunday November 10, 2019
 

 You Must Be Kidding: 

"Just so we're all on the same page… the instructions to the police are not to be near the schools during arrival hours in the morning or at the leaving hours in the afternoon. Other than that, patrols will move through the neighborhood freely and as needed."
--Text message written by Israeli police and sent to Palestinian parents in Issawiyah neighborhood of E. Jerusalem. The parents showed Haaretz+ the message after the police violated the agreement and deployed Border Police at the schools and denied it ever made an agreement.*

Front Page:
Haaretz
Yedioth Ahronoth
  • Lieberman’s ultimatum
  • Selective abuse // Nahum Barnea (Hebrew)
  • Put a spoke in their wheels // Sima Kadmon (Hebrew)
  • Entered fire zone // Yossi Yehoshua
  • Bennet’s defense (ministry appointment)
  • Goodbye and not see you later - Parting from the Island of Peace - After 25 years, Israelis will no longer be allowed to freely enter the site at Naharayim
  • Today: 24 years since since Rabin’s murder
Maariv This Week (Hebrew links only)
Israel Hayom
  • Lieberman presents: Politics of threats // Mati Tuchfeld
  • Lieberman: Whoever doesn’t compromise, I will support his opponent; Likud: “A planned empty threat”
  • Elections round three ahead // Amnon Lord
  • Shalom to the island of shalom (peace)
  • The real danger to democracy: surrender of the politicians to the State Prosecution
  • Municipalities deciding on public transportation on Sabbath: That’s not how to change the status quo // Shuki Friedman


Top News Summary:
The gates shut at the Island of Peace, which Israel returned to Jordan, while, in politics, Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu appointed a man he previously called ‘irresponsible’ as defense minister, after which Yisrael Beiteinu chairman and Israeli elections kingmaker, Avigdor Lieberman, gave the two leading parties an ultimatum to form a government - making the top stories in today’s Hebrew newspapers.

Despite Jordanian concerns that Israel would renege on the agreement, Israel returned two parcels of agricultural land leased near the border, after Jordan rejected Israel’s requests to extend the expired 25-year lease. The IDF declared the area a closed military zone and only 31 Israeli farmers will still be able to access the lands, located in Naharayim, in the Jordan Valley, and Tzofar, in the Arava region in the south, until May 2020. Israel still hopes that Jordan will agree to a new deal.


Elections 2019 News and Quickees:
The political and security commentators had a lot to say about Netanyahu’s appointment of Naftali Bennet (Hayamin Hadash) as defense minister in exchange for Hayamin Hadash merging with the Likud into a joint faction. (See Commentary/Analysis below.) Yedioth Hebrew’s Yuval Karni noted that not long ago, Netanyahu called Bennett, “irresponsible and childish,” when Bennett demanded to be defense minister. “But after two election campaigns and in light of his contacts with (Kahol-Lavan leader Benny) Gantz, things probably look different,” explained Karni. A Likud officials admitted: "This is to prevent the (right-wing) bloc's disintegration.” Kahol-Lavan slammed the move: “Netanyahu is even willing to sell off the defense ministry portfolio to the latest servile person in exchange for a few more days of grace." Israel Hayom’s Mati Tuchfeld wrote that Netanyahu’s decision followed Gantz's announcement that coalition talks are not leading to a national unity government and that he plans to "explore other avenues" to form a coalition, which according to Tuchfeld means leaves only the option of a government supported by the Arab factions - not as silent partners who will abstain in parliament votes, but as active ones. Netanyahu was also concerned that Gantz would succeed in wooing Hayamin Hadash to join him.

Lieberman declared that Netanyahu has to ditch the ultra-Orthodox Jews and Gantz will have to let Netanyahu lead first in a rotation unity government and if either reject his terms, he will back the opponent. A poll released on the “Meet the Press’ TV program indicated that a majority of people want Benny Gantz to form a unity government with the Likud, including with the man who leads it. (Maariv) And more than two thousand Netanyahu supporters rallied in Petah Tikva and at the Tel Aviv Museum Square Saturday night. Actor and playwright Rami Vered got into a violent confrontation with one of the demonstrators. (Maariv)
 
Quick Hits:
  • Three Israeli Soldiers Arrested for Attacking Bedouin Accept Plea Deal - Military prosecutors obtained video of the incident early in investigation, convincing them that the soldiers' version of the incident is unreliable. Soldiers from ultra-Orthodox Netzach Yehuda battalion. (Haaretz+VIDEO and Times of Israel)
  • Twenty-two Cars Vandalized in Suspected Hate Crime in West Bank Village - Hebrew grafitti sprayed at the scene said 'Jews do not stay silent.’ (Haaretz+)
  • Terror Suspect Entered Shin Bet Custody Healthy, Next Morning Was in Critical Condition - The head of the cell suspected of murdering Rina Shnerb, Samer Arbid, was examined by a doctor at 6:21 P.M. and found healthy. At 7:10 A.M. he was rushed to the hospital. (Haaretz+)
  • **Israel Police Deny They Violated Deal With Palestinians, Approach Schools at Flashpoint East Jerusalem Neighborhood - According to locals, police agreed not to send policemen to schools during the daytime as students come and go in order to avoid tensions ■ Police deny a deal was reached. (Haaretz+)
  • Text Messages Show Israel Police Violated Deal With East Jerusalem Schools - According to locals, police agreed not to send policemen to schools during certain hours to avoid tensions ■ Text messages seen by Haaretz negate police's denial that deal was reached. (Haaretz+)
  • Israel scrambles to prevent EU from labeling settlement products - The European Court of Justice is expected to issue a binding ruling on guidelines seeking to label goods imported from Judea and Samaria. Foreign Ministry warns move would promote boycotts of Israeli products. (Israel Hayom)
  • Attorney General Condemns Nixing Film Screening on Lawyer Defending Palestinians - Deputy attorney general says cancellation 'violates freedom of expression'; culture minister called for the cancellation of the showing of 'Lea Tsemel, Advocate,' which she claims glorifies terrorists. (Haaretz+)
  • Senior Israeli security official blasted for calling settlements fulfillment of 'divine promise - Left-wing Front for the Protection of Democracy complains to Civil Service Commission over remarks made by National Security Council Deputy Director Reuven Azar at a Christian media conference. (Haaretz+)
  • Israel's planned Jerusalem cable car irks Palestinians - Palestinians say the project's planned route would place cable cars just meters above their homes in East Jerusalem, violating their culture, history and geographic character of the city; Israel, meanwhile, calls the plan a strategic project to promote tourism in the capital. (Agencies, Ynet)
  • Request of witness in Netanyahu case to label interrogation as classified rejected - State prosecution, police tell Nir Hefetz that investigative materials cannot be concealed from the suspects’ lawyers. (Haaretz+)
  • 23-year-old Construction Worker Dies in Fall at Building Site in Central Israel - Samir Karamawi is the sixth construction worker to die this week, 42nd since the beginning of the year. (Haaretz)
  • Israel ignored Moscow's plea to extradite Russian hacker for over three years, lawyers say - At a hearing on Aleksey Burkov’s petition against extradition to U.S., his attorneys claim Israel mishandled Russian request for extradition. (Haaretz)
  • Remains of Hybrid Neanderthal-sapiens Population Found in Israel - Teeth found in Manot Cave, in the Western Galilee, likely belonged to humans who returned to the Levant from Europe 40,000 years ago – after interbreeding there with Neanderthals. (Haaretz+)
  • Shin Bet says it thwarted over 450 terrorist attacks in 2019 - Domestic security agency Director Nadav Argaman credits success to cutting-edge technology, collaboration with the IDF and Israel Police, and the Shin Bet's "synergy with our counterparts around the world." (Israel Hayom)
  • Indian WhatsApp Users Ask Govt to Explain Ties With Israeli Firm in Privacy Breach Case - The Indian government has neither confirmed nor denied using the spyware. (Agencies, Haaretz)
  • Hit Israeli show 'Fauda' set for Indian remake tuned to conflict with Pakistan - The adaptation of the thriller, which follows a counterterrorism unit operating in the West Bank, is expected to be released in 2020. (Haaretz)
  • U.S. rejects Jordan's refusal to extradite Hamas terrorist wanted for trial - Development could lead to further American pressure on Amman to extradite Ahlam Tamimi, who played a major role in organizing the 'Sbarro attack' in Jerusalem in 2001. (Haaretz+)
  • Iraqi Forces Kill Five in Attempt to Push Protesters Back to Main Square - Clashes wound nearly 100 more people; government promises reforms aimed at ending the crisis. (Agencies, Haaretz)
  • Iran Defends Its Decision to Block UN Atomic Inspector - A spokesman for Iran's atomic agency said the government 'legally speaking' had done nothing wrong in stopping the female inspector from touring its Natanz nuclear facility. (Agencies, Haaretz)
  • After Tehran blocks UN inspector, Netanyahu claims Iran 'continues to lie' about nuclear program - Following IAEA reports on Iran's refusal to cooperate with investigation, Netanyahu calls to 'resist Iran's aggression and terror' and 'snap back sanctions.’ (Haaretz+)
  • Iran says reports of IAEA finding uranium at unnamed site is Israeli plot - Iranian Foreign Ministry calls reports of traces of uranium being found at a location Netanyahu once called Iran's 'secret atomic warehouse,' a 'trap' set up by 'the Zionist regime.’ (Agencies, Ynet)
  • Study: Iran's proxy groups give it military advantage over US and US allies in Middle East - International Institute for Strategic Studies claims Iran's preferred strategy of using third-party groups in Iraq, Lebanon, Syria, and Yemen give it an edge over countries that have stronger conventional armies. (Israel Hayom)
  • Iran Says Case Open on ex-FBI Agent Missing There on CIA Job - The case over Robert Levinson, who disappeared in 2007, is 'ongoing,' Iran said in United Nations filing. (Agencies, Haaretz)
  • Heavy Fighting Between Syrian and Turkish Troops, State News Says - Syrian news agency SANA said Saturday's clashes included heavy machine gun fire and occurred in the village of Um Shaifa near the town of Ras al-Ayn. (Agencies, Haaretz)
  • Turkish patrol kills protester amid shaky truce in Syria - Videos circulating online showed the group of protesters trying to mount one of the vehicles and then the men shouting, apparently after the man is run over. (Agencies, Haaretz)
  • Kurdish leaders tell EU: Get tough with Turkey or face Islamic State fighters - Senior Kurdish leader also said the West should investigate Turkey's alleged use of chemical weapons against the Kurds. (Agencies, Haaretz)
  • As bigotry stirs globally, Bosnian Jews, Muslims recall lesson in tolerance - Members of both faiths gather in Sarajevo to remember the 1819 rescue of a dozen members of the city's Jewish community by local Muslims; 'Bosnian Muslims and Jews are one body,' says country's grand mufti. (Agencies, Ynet)


Features:
Gideon Levy Chilling Testimony From a 10-year-old Palestinian Boy's Arrest by Israeli Troops
In hot pursuit of masked youths in a Palestinian town, soldiers arrested, handcuffed and blindfolded 10-year-old Qusay al-Jaar, then took him away to be interrogated. He, his father and cousin recall the ordeal. (Gideon Levy, Haaretz+)
Brother and sister reunite in Israel after 59 years
They grew up apart in England and had never met before, but now thanks to a Facebook post, Susan Masrua from Tayibe and her long lost-brother have finally reconnected after decades of searching for one other. (Hassan Shaalan, Ynet)
The Jews Who Cried When the Berlin Wall Fell 30 Years Ago
Among those who did not welcome the wall’s fall were a few Jews serving in senior government positions, including a superspy who operated a network of 4,000 spies. (Ofer Aderet, Haaretz+)
Stasi Spies and neo-Nazis: East German Jewish Life Before and After the Fall of the Berlin Wall
Members of the Jewish community reflect on events before and after November 9, 1989, including an unlikely Jewish renaissance in eastern Germany and the disturbing rise of the far right. (Steffi Hentschke, Haaretz+)
'An Eye for an Eye': The Jews Who Sought to Poison Six Million Germans to Avenge the Holocaust
Historian Dina Porat explores the story of 'The Avengers,' some 50 young men and women who planned to poison bread loaves and water supplies distributed to German prisoners after WWII. (Ofer Aderet, Haaretz+)
How the Jews Invented the Goy
Two Israeli scholars examine the dramatic and surprising history of one of the oldest Jewish institutions: the sharp separation between ‘them’ and ‘us.’ (Tomer Persico, Haaretz+)
A Poignant Portrait of an Exiled Palestinian-Israeli Writer
In the last of a quartet of novels, Sayed Kashua grapples with identity, exile, lies, loneliness and longing – both his and his protagonist’s. (Brett Ashley Kaplan, Haaretz+)
 
Commentary/Analysis:
Violent Israeli Soldiers Strike Again. They Are Embraced, Again (Amos Harel, Haaretz+) Like the case of the so-called Hebron shooter, there is a deeper trend in play.
It’s most convenient for the government when there is no negotiations with Hamas (Ran Edelist, Maariv) Yahya Sinwar blatantly threatens Israel - and the government retains the right to keep silent. Not scary? This doesn’t require a proud Jewish response?
Israeli Right’s New Bank – the Jewish National Fund (Raviv Drucker, Haaretz+) The organization faces calls to investigate suspicions that tens of millions of dollars earmarked for Jerusalem have wound up being used to buy land and other property in occupied territory.
How to Save Israel (Nehemia Shtrasler, Haaretz+) Shtrasler writes that Yedioth’s reports on the alleged collapse of healthcare are exaggerated, that the traffic congestion can be solved, and that the Education Ministry should not have canceled the Education Growth and Effectiveness Measures for Schools, which grades schools.
Leaks are the lifeblood of the press and a distinct civil interest in democracy (Avi Benayahu, Maariv) I am among those who believe that Netanyahu should vacate his place for many reasons. I have no desire to see him on the defendant's booth, I have no desire to see him convicted.
For a moment, Israel and Jordan showed each other that another way was possible (Jackie Khougy, Maariv) Although the Jordanian detainee whom Israel released made two governments bend for her, the security damage done to Israel was not great…General Yusuf Hunyati was photographed at Naharayim, with his soldiers. He carried a promise from the king in his mouth, he said, knowing that their terms of service would be improved. Visits of this type characterize senior commanders in war zones, not armies in peace. A few hours later, the Jordanian army launched a military exercise in the area, which included shooting live ammunition. Both of these events were rare occurrences. The Jordanian Army does not perform a live drill in the area usually, and its commanders have not set foot there for years. And here, six days before the deadline, the Jordanians rattle their weapons in front of us. A brief inquiry into Amman revealed that there was a fear in the Jordanian echelons that Israel would initiate a military exercise, and at the last moment refuse to return the enclave.
Only a Jew Can Be an Israeli (Gideon Levy, Haaretz+) There’s no such thing as non-Jewish Israelis; Israel will do everything so there never will be. There are non-evangelical Americans, non-Catholic French people, non-Protestant Germans and even non-Muslim Arabs…How many times have you said “Israeli” when you really meant “Jewish”? How many times have you said “Arabs” and meant “non-Israelis”? That’s the attitude of the state to its Arab citizens and that’s also the explanation for the abuse of the children of foreign workers: children who were born, raised and educated here, who have no language other than Hebrew and no society other than Israeli society are not Israelis. They dream of serving in the army and becoming obedient, dedicated soldiers, but even this sacred entry threshold is not enough.
Inclusion of women in combat is a real necessity given the decline in the number of men going to combat units (Tal Lev-Ram, Maariv) Every addition to recruitment is important to filling the ranks of the combat and combat support units. Hence the military is marking that the highest potential in the short term is in recruiting women.
Let the Country Burn (Carolina Landsmann, Haaretz+) After pouring a jerrican of gasoline on the police and prosecutors, after handing burning torches to the ministers in charge of the legal system and police, and after signaling them to come out against the organizations they’re responsible for, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu volunteered — without a drop of shame — to put out the fire that he himself set. The pyromaniac in the prime minister’s residence is now the responsible adult flying solo in his supertanker through Israel’s skies on his national firefighting mission.
24 years since Rabin's murder: What happened to the murderer's image? (Shmuel Rosner, Maariv) This week, Israel marks the anniversary of the assassination of Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin. As you could see in Rabin Square a week ago, fewer people are going to the memorial rally.
Who will lead the Palestinians after Abbas? (Shimrit Meir, Yedioth/Ynet) Though no attempt has been made to push Abbas out of office, his age and ailing health require those vying for his job to consider their options as they wait for nature to take its course.
Iran's Confidence Is Rising. So Where's Its 'Revenge' Against Israel? (Amos Harel, Haaretz+) The answer may lie in the streets of the Middle East.
Waiting for Qassem (al-Suleimani): It is expected to continue to dictate Israeli decision-making (Alon Ben David, Maariv) Israel must internalize that it may remain alone in an effort to curb the Iranian nuclear deal. It requires formulating a security concept that is relevant to the challenge, and taking failure into consideration.
Should Iran and the Rest of the Mideast's Nuclear Cheats Fear the UN's New Nuke Cop? (Alex Bollfrass, Haaretz+) The Trump administration called him the 'perfect candidate.' How will Rafael Grossi, incoming IAEA chief, manage U.S. and Israeli pressure on Iran – and brewing nuclear proliferation throughout the Middle East?
Words won't stop Iran, actions will (Alex Fishman, Yedioth/Ynet) The Islamic Republic has rebooted its efforts to obtain nuclear capabilities, but the government deadlock in Israel prevents the political echelons from making crucial decisions about these developments.
As oil war rages in Syria, Trump and Putin battle about to boil over (Zvi Bar'el, Haaretz+) The U.S. president's decision to leave forces to guard Syria's oil fields has angered Russia, which sees them as war booty it deserves.
Rival Syrian governments lock horns in a bloodless but ruthless battle (Zvi Bar'el, Haaretz+) A patchwork quilt of governments and organizations are running the show in northern Syria where Turkey has asserted itself against the Kurds, while Russian-backed constitution talks in Geneva are going nowhere fast.
A solution to the rift between Israel and US Jewry lies with the rabbis (Shlomo Shamir, Maariv) Reform and Conservative Jews are outraged at Israel’s attitude towards them. At the same time, the increase in the number of anti-Semitic incidents put the Jewish community in the United States in the headlines.
This Year's Most Bizarre, Patronizing Misreading of U.S. Jews and Israel (Eric H. Yoffie, Haaretz+) A serious scholar, Daniel Gordis has written a wildly revisionist history of liberal U.S. Jews' relationship with Israel, based on the core idea that they're repulsed by the Jewish state's particularism. He is completely wrong.
Pushing back (David M. Weinberg, Israel Hayom) This has been a depressing year – with antisemitic and anti-Israel activity on the rise. Thankfully, Stephen Harper and others are there to defend Israel and the Jewish People.

Elections 2019 Commentary/Analysis:
In Appointing Bennett as Defense Chief, Netanyahu Only Has One Thing on His Mind (Amos Harel, Haaretz+) Prime minister's choice was not guided by security considerations.
Poor herd of stray sheep: Likud officials understand, but remain silent (Ben Caspit, Maariv) Fighters for human rights took off their black robes and put on the pointed white hats. They did not stop to check facts, check feasibility or reach the truth. And now he's against a publicity ban (a minute after his men violated it). It's neat. He always has an alibi. It's not me, it's them. It's always them. What looks like a crime family, acts like a crime family and makes noises of a crime family, is a mafia.
Elections are the answer: Not only does Netanyahu stand as a barrier to unity, but the entire Likud (Ran Edelist, Maariv) he Likudniks stance against the rule of law during the Prime Minister’s trial should help to formulate a left-wing alternative, unless everything is rotten in the kingdom of priests and a holy god.
The Birth of Bibi's Tragedy (Iris Leal, Haaretz+) Anyone who saw Dan Shadur’s film “King Bibi,” which was broadcast last week on Channel 13 in light of the turbulent events happening these days, could see the metamorphosis of the main character, crammed into 60 minutes.
Netanyahu just gave Bennett the temporary gift of the defense portfolio. It’s a sign he’s losing his grip (Anshel Pfeffer, Haaretz+) The merger of Naftali Bennett’s small right-wing party into Likud reflects Netanyahu’s paranoia as he and Benny Gantz each struggle to form a governing coalition.
Selective abuse (Nahum Barnea, Yedioth Hebrew) Maybe I didn't hear well, maybe I didn't understand, but if I'm not mistaken, Avigdor Lieberman put out an ultimatum last night that might unleash the ensnarlement that is preventing the formation of a government. Lieberman came to Channel 12 News for an interview with Dana Weiss. He made it clear that he would join the bloc whose leader would respond positively to the demand he would offers. From Gantz, he demands to adopt the president's outline for a unity government. From Netanyahu, he demands to part with the ultra-Orthodox parties. Seemingly, both demands are impossible. The question is which is less impossible.
Political logjam has Lieberman in a panic (Mati Tuchfeld, Israel Hayom) Yisrael Beytenu's leader has been painted into a corner and getting out of it will most likely see him complete his conversion from a right-wing hardliner to an integral part of the Left.
Lieberman Resets Israel's Political Clock, Reducing Likelihood of a Third Election (Yossi Verter, Haaretz+)This week could prove to be decisive for Israel's messy political minefield.
Hurry up Liberman, it's time (Ariela Ringel Hoffman, Yedioth/Ynet) If he is the kingmaker he claims, the Yisrael Beytenu leader needs to make a decision about the future of the country and save us all from this interminable political odyssey.
Liquidation Sale (Haaretz Editorial) Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, entrenched within the right-wing bloc, has refused to recognize defeat and is firing in all directions. After failing to rally the public behind the idea of a direct election for the prime minister as an alternative to a third general election, he has pulled a new rabbit out of his tattered magician’s hat.
Liberman shuffles the deck in the house of cards of Israeli politics (Yuval Karni, Yedioth/Ynet) Yisrael Beytenu chairman gives leaders of Israel's two largest parties an ultimatum to form a government, but so far it does not seem to have pushed either Netanyahu or Gantz into taking serious steps to compromise on power-sharing.
Netanyahu is crafting a balance of terror within his bloc (Yossi Verter, Haaretz+) The illegal performance by Justice Minister Ohana this week has shown Netanyahu who's really calling the shots.
 
Prepared for APN by Orly Halpern, independent freelance journalist based in Jerusalem.
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