APN's daily news review from Israel - Sunday September 6, 2020
Quote of the day:
"A young officer in the Israeli army, the age of my daughter, threw 60-year-old (Khairi) Hanoun to the
ground. His kaffiyeh fell off from the force of the fall. The officer sat on Hanoun. He held him down on the
ground, pushing Hanoun’s face in the sand. And he put his knee on his head. That’s how a soldier doing 'meaningful
service' in the Israel Defense Forces looks today. And this is exactly how George Floyd was killed by a policeman
in Minneapolis, in an incident that led to a worldwide protest against police brutality in the United States
against Black people...It never occurred to him that his knee was crushing the neck of the Palestinian George
--Haaretz+ commentator Rogel Alpher writes about the meaning of the soldier filmed attacking an unarmed Palestinian man who protested the confiscation of his village lands.*
- (Corona Czar) Gamzu will publish today the list of cities that will be on lockdown starting tomorrow
- Dozens of experts called to adopt the Swedish model
- Thousands demonstrated in Jerusalem (against Netanyahu), clashes broke out between demonstrators and police [MAIN PHOTO]
- Despite denying, Netanyahu agreed to the sale of F-35 stealth fighter jets to the Emirates to present achievements before the elections led Israel to recognize Kosovo // Noa Landau
- Trump declared normalization in the Balkans, but the conflict is far from being over // Roi Simyoni
- Trump’s push
- The hottest night in the history of Jerusalem and 40 degrees Celsius in the Golan Heights: The exceptional heat wave broke records over the weekend and still isn’t over
- Due to a lack of caretakers, 1,300 autistic children don’t receive the necessary aid
- Go home // Akiva Novick says Corona Czar Ronnie Gamzu should quit if he cares about the battle against corona
- Irrational // Gur Megiddo writes that Netanyahu’s escape plan will actually increase the chance that he will have to recuse himself
- Men still rule in the musical production field. Three women opened a school in order to change the situation
- Over 1000 died [full front page lists the names and ages of all of those who died from corona]
- Take responsibility // Nadav Eyal writes that the country isn’t taking the necessary steps to battle corona because it cares less about the people who die from it - the elderly (Hebrew)
- Discussions in Eilat about the compensation package from the US in exchange for the weapons deal with the Emirates (Hebrew)
Maariv This Week (Hebrew links only)
- The red test - the panic over the second wave of corona
- Chronicle of an unnecessary death - Police couldn’t find the outdoor party and one of the partiers died the next day from heatstroke
- Kosovo is here - Washington and Jerusalem continue their work renewing relations with the far-off Muslim world - The Palestinians can wait
- Between Trump and his voters // Hayim Iserovich
- Not giving up - At Balfour (Prime Minister’s Residence), in Caesarea, at junctions and bridges: The protests around the country (against Netanyahu) continue
- “Transfer of the embassies - an expression of friendship” - Under the auspices of Trump: Israel will recognize Kosovo and it will turn into the first Muslim country with a representative office in the capital
- Diplomatic tsunami of love // Boaz Bismuth
- Police and roadblocks: Preparing for the lockdown in red cities
- “The outdoor party killed my son” - Young man died of heat stroke
- Red September (heat wave)
- The Knesset - the only one that can rule on a leave of absence for Netanyahu // Haim Shine
Top News Summary:
The tension ahead of the Corona Czar’s decision to lockdown ‘red’ cities and towns, the Trump-led diplomacy that will see Serbia moving its embassy to Jerusalem and will see Muslim country of Kosovo establishing relations with Israel, Israeli Prime Binyamin Netanyahu’s denial of the ‘New York Times’ report that he knew about the US plan to sell F-35s to the UAE and Yedioth’s scoop about what Israel is now expecting in return for allowing the sale, the 11th week of anti-Netanyahu protests across the country and the heatwave that has broken records in Israel and caused a teen at an outdoor party to die of heatstroke - these were the top stories in today’s Hebrew newspapers.
Israel will recognize the Muslim country of Kosovo, and both Serbia and Kosovo will open embassies in Jerusalem as part of the US President Donald Trump-led mediation between the two European countries. Commentators, with the usual exception of ‘Israel Hayom,’ viewed this as an election move for both the US and Israeli leaders. Netanyahu said proudly that Kosovo is the “first country with a Muslim majority to open an embassy in Jerusalem” and said the “circle of peace and recognition of Israel is expanding.” ’Israel Hayom’ got an exclusive interview with Kosovo's President Hashim Thaçi. Moreover, Malawi’s new president vowed to open a diplomatic office in Jerusalem (also Maariv), which would be the first African country to do so. (Also Maariv) The Foreign Minister of Honduras said the long planned relocation of the embassy to Jerusalem is moving forward. (In January, Honduras’ President Juan Orlando Hernandez said his government would transfer its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem after it takes possession of a $50 million warship it purchased from Israel and after Israel opens an embassy in Tegucigalpa.) ‘Israel Hayom’ quoted Israeli experts who say that an Israel-Saudi peace deal won’t come as soon as some though it would following the normalization agreement with the UAE.
On the night between Thursday and Friday, the New York Times confirmed Yedioth Ahronoth's previous scoop that Netanyahu was involved in the Trump administration's secret plan to sell a package of weapons to the Emirates, and that Netanyahu even secretly agreed to sell F-35s to the UAE. Netanyahu denied the NYT report that he privately approved the sale of US F-35 stealth fighter jets to the UAE. The issue is sensitive because Israel fears it will lose its qualitative military superiority in the region, if advanced weaponry is sold to other countries here. The Trump administration had pledged to preserve Israel's qualitative advantage with US weapons - a commitment first made in the Yom Kippur War. However, Yedioth Hebrew’s Nahum Barnea got another scoop according to which, Israel is now discussing the compensation package it will receive from the United States in exchange for agreeing to the the US arms deal with the Emirates. Among the options being examined: Advancing by a year the supply of weapons within the framework of American security assistance and purchasing advanced weapons that will maintain the IDF's qualitative advantage. Yedioth has learned that the Israel Aeronautical Industry has made its own proposal: to advance and produce weapons systems that the IDF is interested in, and for the US to receive the payment a year later. The budget department in the Ministry of Finance concluded that the proposal was too expensive and rejected it. In discussions in Israel, there were those who suggested making a similar proposal to the Americans, Barnea reported. The argument was simple: "Trump wants to provide jobs for the arms industry. This is good for America and good for Israel." The arms deal with the UAE will soon be discussed in Congress. The normalization with Israel will be the reasoning by which the Trump administration hopes to obtain approval for the deal, wrote Barnea. Formally, the arms deal is not part of the normalization agreement. However, the three components of the American initiative are intertwined: postponing annexation, arms deal, and normalization.
- Coronavirus Israel Live: Death Toll Passes 1,000 as Authorities Prepare for Lockdown - Israeli city considers cutting ties with Health Ministry over proposed lockdown ■ Gaza renews lockdown as virus spreads across Strip. (Haaretz+)
- Israel sees coronavirus infection rate spike to worrying 10% - Health Ministry reports although on Saturday only 1,482 tested positive for COVID-19, due to a low number of tests conducted, one out of every 10 tests returned positive; government set to decide on the list of communities set to be put on lockdown. (Ynet)
- Israeli Physicians, Scientists Warn Against Lockdown, Call to Adopt Swedish Model - Experts' petition recommends protecting vulnerable populations as opposed to taking far-reaching collective action to curb the spread of the virus. Experts include Dr. Udi Qimron, a professor of microbiology at Tel Aviv University; Amnon Shashua, the founder of autonomous-driving technology developer Mobileye and a professor of computer science at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem; Michael Levitt, a Nobel Prize winner in chemistry and professor of structural biology at Stanford University; Prof. Eitan Friedman, a professor of internal medicine specializing in cancer; and Dr. Ifat Abadi-Korek, the head of the pharmacoeconomics department at the Israeli Center for Technology Assessment in Health Care. (Haaretz+)
- Experts warn ministers of health crisis with coronavirus contagion unchecked - Ministers warned health system at risk of over capacity unless steps taken, report laments delays in implementing Gamzu plan to control spread of virus. Experts from Hebrew University and the Hadassah Medical Center in Jerusalem, on Thursday warned ministers of a critical increase in seriously ill COVID-19 patients expected within two weeks. (Ynet)
- Ultra-Orthodox, Arab Cities Across Israel Challenge Planned Coronavirus Lockdown - Israel's coronavirus czar is expected to announce which cities and towns will be put under lockdown starting Monday, as infection rates keep rising. (Haaretz+)
- Ministers approve lockdowns on 30 cities hard hit by coronavirus - Restrictions set to come into effect on Monday, ministers to finalize list of localities placed under lockdown by Sunday; cabinet will discuss possibility of nationwide lockdown next week. (Yedioth/Ynet)
- Israeli army commander won't be tried for shooting dead a Palestinian who threw rock at his car - High Court denies petition to try Col. Yisrael Shomer, who shot and killed a 17-year-old Palestinian in 2015. (Haaretz+)
- Construction worker dies in fall at Israel’s biggest port; Another dies in Nitzana - Death of crane operator at Ashdod port on Friday in southern Israel brings total death toll for construction workers in 2020 to 40. Earlier on Thursday, a 37-year-old construction worker was killed after being struck by a heavy object at a construction site in Nitzana. The worker, Atwa Abu Arar from the Bedouin Israeli town of Arara, was married and had six children. (Haaretz+ and Israel Hayom Hebrew and Maariv and Ynet Hebrew)
- Plans to eradicate violence in the Arab sector have been approved - and remain in the drawer - In 2018, the government approved three programs to combat violence in towns, with an emphasis on localities in the Arab sector. Most of the clauses have not been implemented and the tragic consequences are seen at the cemeteries. (Maariv)
- BBC journalist sets up Twitter account saying Israel is ‘racist’ and ‘white supremacist’ - The Jewish Chronicle outed Nimesh Thaker, a longtime BBC World News journalist, as the man behind the now-private Not that bothered Twitter account. (JTA, Haaretz)
- Attorney general: Netanyahu does not have to recuse himself during corruption trial; ‘the public, rather than the legal challenge is the real problem - Avichai Mendelblit says at legal conference that a prime minister on trial for criminal charges can continue to serve if possible conflicts of interest are closely policed. (Israel Hayom and Ynet and Haaretz+)
- Poll Shows Israel’s Biggest Opposition Party Loses Support if Leader Replaced; Bennett leaps - Poll, conducted for Channel 12 News, examined the political map after the political bomb dropped by MK Ofer Shelach when he declared his intention to advance Yesh Atid party primaries and replace chairman and founder, Yair Lapid. According to the poll, Yesh Atid is predicted to get 15 seats – down from its current 17 with Lapid as its leader, but 13 seats with [the more left-leaning - OH] Shelah leading. Likud would have been strengthened by one seat and won 31 seats, and the Yamina party would also strengthen at the expense of Yesh Atid, with Yamina winning 19 seats and Yesh Atid with only 15. Joint List: 15. Kahol-Lavan: 11. Yisrael Beiteinu: 8. Shas: 8. United Torah Judaism: 7, Meretz: 6. The Netanyahu-led bloc has a clear majority. (Haaretz+ and Maariv)
- Pro-Netanyahu TV channel to take its news program off the air - Two years after a law was passed to allow Israel's Channel air an evening news cast, the station faces cutbacks and layoffs. (Haaretz+)
- 'Every citizen should serve,' says IDF chief - Lt. Gen. Aviv Kochavi, speaking at a ceremony to honor outstanding officers and NCOs, calls it "unacceptable" that IDF soldiers bear the burden alone. (Israel Hayom)
- Israeli Gas Giant Found Ancient Shipwrecks. Israel Covered It Up - Dispute ensues over access to Noble Energy's Bronze Age findings beneath Mediterranean in 2016, with researchers claiming they could reveal untold trade histories. (Haaretz+)
- High-flying drone drops free dope over Tel Aviv - Drone scatters dozens of sealed bags containing cannabis above Rabin Square and nearby streets; police arrests two suspects for operating the drone and distributing drugs. (Ynet)
- World Zionist Organization sending permanent emissaries to UAE Jewish community for first time - Pioneer couple will provide education about Judaism and Israel to the country's 1,000-strong Jewish community. (JTA, Haaretz)
- American Jewish Committee to open first office in the Arab world in the UAE - The U.S. Jewish advocacy group has been engaging with UAE officials for a quarter of a century. (Haaretz+)
- Bahrain to Allow Flights Between Israel and UAE to Cross Its Airspace - Move comes after U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo held closed-door meetings with Bahrain's royal family and top officials amid Trump administration's push for Arab nations to recognize Israel. (Haaretz+)
- UAE hotels to start offering kosher food to Jewish guests - Local hospitality group 'thrilled' it will now be able to provide 'memorable' kosher meals to single business travelers and visitors and cater to corporate events and even weddings. (Ynet)
- Rival Palestinian factions hold rare joint meeting over Israel-UAE deal - "Our national cause faces various plots and dangers," Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas tells Hamas chief Ismail Haniyeh and Palestinian Islamic Jihad leader Ziyad al-Nakhalah. (Agencies, Israel Hayom)
- Hamas leader to meet Nasrallah after Qatar-brokered deal with Israel - Ismail Haniyeh's Beirut meeting with the Hezbollah leader would take place days after understandings reached with Israel to end weeks of tensions and clashes. (Haaretz+)
- Defense officials expect Hezbollah revenge attack before High Holidays - Hezbollah reiterates its threat to carry out a revenge attack against Israel before the Jewish New Year (Rosh Hashanah), on September 18. (Israel Hayom)
- Israel, Italy launch DIDO-3 medical research satellite - The tiny satellite was launchedon a Vega rocket from the Kourou base in French Guyana. Satellite work as a mini-lab conducting experiments in micro-gravity conditions while identical tests conducted by researchers in Israel, Italy. (Ynet)
- Over 200 wounded in explosion in western Iran - The explosion of a chlorine gas canister being transported by a truck in western Iran has injured 217 people but caused no deaths, Iranian state news agency IRNA reported Saturday. (Israel Hayom)
- US blacklists companies for helping facilitate Iran's exports of oil - "Our actions today reaffirm the United States' commitment to denying the Iranian regime the financial resources it needs to fuel terrorism and other destabilizing activities," says US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. (Agencies, Israel Hayom)
- French spy master joins effort to deliver Lebanese reforms, sources say - France's intelligence chief has joined efforts to push Lebanon to deliver a new government and reforms, Lebanese sources said on Thursday, buttressing French President Emmanuel Macron's bid to pull the country out of a devastating economic crisis. (Israel Hayom)
- Afghanistan agrees to put mothers' names on birth certificates - Campaigners have for years pushed for women to be named on official documents including children's birth certificates, which like Afghan identity documents carry only the name of a person's father, under the hashtag #Whereismyname. (Israel Hayom)
'I Waited for the Bullet That Would End This Nightmare': Palestinians Brutalized by Israeli Cop Gang Speak
Five Border Police officers have been charged in a shocking case of violence against Palestinian workers, which included beatings, humiliation and also robbery. Testimonies of two of the victims. (Gideon Levy, Haaretz+PHOTOS)
*This Israeli Soldier Had No Idea He Put His Knee to the Head of a Palestinian George Floyd (Rogel Alpher, Haaretz+PHOTOS+VIDEO and VIDEO filmed by son of Khairi Hanoun) Khairi Hanoun is a little bit older than me. My age is exactly the same age as the occupation, so Hanoun was 7 when Israel decided that it would rule over him against his will, nullify his basic human rights, steal his land and not let him vote. I have a cousin who lives in Chicago, has never visited Israel and has no connection to this country. But if he “makes aliyah” – because Israel lies above, with the rest of the world below – just because he wants to, on a whim, he’ll automatically receive every right, while Hanoun will continue receiving zero rights. On the day the Israeli delegation flew to Abu Dhabi to make peace without Khairi Hanoun, he protested the confiscation of land near Tul Karm in the West Bank. What happened there was filmed and uploaded to social media. I watched and my stomach turned. Helpless fury overcame me. I apologize, Khairi. Your life is no less important than mine. A young officer in the Israeli army, the age of my daughter, threw 60-year-old Hanoun to the ground. His kaffiyeh fell off from the force of the fall. The officer sat on Hanoun. He held him down on the ground, pushing Hanoun’s face in the sand. And he put his knee on his head…
Trump Secures Long Overdue Israeli Recognition of Kosovo. But What's That Have to Do With 'Middle East Peace’? (Noa Landau, Haaretz+) No agreement with another country can make Israel's real challenge – its conflict with the Palestinians – vanish away to the Balkans.
The Serbia-Kosovo agreement is another move by Trump on the road to elections (Dr. Hayim Iserovich, Maariv) The agreement on normalization between the countries is another step on the way to closing the open wounds of the disintegration of Yugoslavia, but it is difficult to ignore the fact that the event has become a tool in the hands of the American president.
F-35 snafu rains on Netanyahu’s UAE-deal victory parade (Chemi Shalev, Haaretz+) Trump’s elections-focused White House peace pageant is a political minefield for the prime minister.
Israel-UAE Agreement Is Peace of the Rich (Carolina Landsmann, Haaretz+) The campaign slogan that brought Benjamin Netanyahu to power in 1996, “Netanyahu is good for the Jews,” was chosen after a poll was conducted by his adviser Arthur Finkelstein, who asked Israelis: “What are you first, Israeli or Jewish?” Since then the prevailing paradigm has been that those who describe themselves as Jewish first are rightists, while those who identify as Israeli first are leftists. “The Jews won” – that’s what I thought when I looked at the pictures of the Israeli-American delegation in Abu Dhabi. Netanyahu and Jared Kushner did it. The Jewish son-in-law of the U.S. president closed the deal. With F-35s, without F-35s, let’s not be childish, the Jews from both delegations are winking at us. Israel isn’t really sovereign, it’s an American protectorate in every way. The Americans are the guarantors of our security, so let them do business quietly…
UAE and F-35s: Netanyahu Doubletalk Sets Up Dogfight Between Trump and Congress (Evan Gottesman, Haaretz+) In private, Netanyahu said yes to the U.S. selling stealth fighters to UAE; in public, he’s opposing it. His mixed messages, and opaque motivations, will intensify the upcoming controversy between Trump, pushing for a deal, and Congress.
On the crossroads between Serbia and Kosovo (Boaz Bismuth, Israel Hayom) Today, Serbia is looking for a family and Kosovo is looking for recognition, and Israel is precisely situated on the intersection between the two.
The Israel-UAE love-in was a nauseating publicity stunt, not a peace deal (Marc Owen Jones, Haaretz+) The media obediently promoted and amplified an illusory ‘breakthrough’ stage-managed by the Trump administration - while this week’s real peacemaker, Qatar, was sidelined.
The peace camp is frustrated that the generator of the (UAE normaliztion) agreement is Netanyahu (Michael Kleiner, Maariv) Compared to the bitter (peace) agreements with Egypt and Jordan, the agreement with the Emirates seems like a sweet peace.
Israel-UAE deal brings 25 years of covert diplomacy out of the shadows (Noa Landau, Haaretz+) As one diplomat puts it, 'These foundations were built bottom up, patiently and quietly, over many years, to prepare people’s hearts in advance, unlike what happened in Jordan and Egypt.’
What stands between the Arabs of Israel and the normalization of relations with their Jewish neighbors (Nadav Haetzni, Maariv) The Palestinians, who are trapped by two terrorist organizations, see the normalization blowing from the Gulf and want it as well. But in relations with the Emirates there is a toxic sting, which nothing good will come of…Those who walk on Friday evening on the Railway Park in Jerusalem, deep inside the "Jewish" West Jerusalem, cannot help but notice a phenomenon: the walking and cycling paths are filled with many Arabs. A pair of girls exchanging impressions, guys doing jogging without a shirt, families with small children hanging out. A similar picture is noticeable in Ein Kerem [neighborhood at edge of Jerusalem, was Christian village pre-1948 - OH]: Arabs are dining in restaurants, hiking near the spring. They feel at home. Not to mention at the city malls, especially the Malcha mall, where co-existence of overtime works. Almost all of these sites are far from the east of the city, but most of the people visiting them are East Jerusalem Arabs. They do not come to the leisure and shopping sites of the west of the city as a political demonstration, but as residents having fun where they feel comfortable. This fact contradicts, of course, the protocols of the elders of the Israeli left and our enemies among the Israeli Arabs, who attribute apartheid and discrimination to us. But when it comes to the Jerusalem reality, the phenomenon goes much further. Most of the city's Arabs are not Israeli citizens, but residents. In other words, they enjoy all the rights, except the right to vote in the Knesset. The priests of the left for generations, not to mention their political leaders in the Knesset or Ramallah, count them as part of Abu Mazen's subjects, but it turns out they think otherwise…
The dehumanization is the point (Sarit Michaeli, 972mag) Last week, Israeli soldiers placed IEDs at the entrance to a Palestinian village in the occupied West Bank. Why is such an act so hard to believe, even after everything we've seen the army do to Palestinians?
The anti-Netanyahu Protesters Are Erasing the Palestinians (Jonathan Pollak, Haaretz+) Just like in 2011, when Israel was swept up by the social justice protests, many on the left have taken to the streets over the internal strife in recent months. And just like then, the Israeli left is abandoning the Palestinians and taking part in their elimination from the public discourse.
The West's blind eye to Palestinian incitement (Melanie Phillips, Israel Hayom) The latest incompetence, reviewing the wrong textbook used for children, seems hard to believe. Why do people find it so difficult to acknowledge Palestinian violence and bigotry against Israel and the Jews?
Anti-Netanyahu Protests Are a Bridge to Nowhere (Gideon Levy, Haaretz+) I see you every Saturday evening on Tel Aviv's Hayarkon Bridge and the pedestrian bridge to Hayarkon Park. Dozens of good people, most of them area residents, blowing whistles, drumming on darabukka goblet drums, waving black flags and white signs. They want the criminally indicted prime minister ousted, they want a different political culture – Bibi go home. Their demands couldn’t be more justified. They’re my neighbors and close friends from the neighborhood, the salt of the earth, leftists and centrists, builders of the land, Haaretz readers, moderate and enlightened, feeders of street cats, the kind of drivers who stop at every crosswalk. They’re the beautiful islands in the bad and violent culture that has developed in Israel, and still my heart isn’t with them. The bridge they’re standing on is very narrow. Too narrow…But in Israel, even if Netanyahu went, the situation and the regime wouldn’t change materially. Straight talk and decent language would replace the lies and incitement, a few unsavory characters would leave the political stage, the next prime minister would be less greedy and more honest, but Israel would be the same.
The rat in Israeli public life (Caroline B. Glick, Israel Hayom) Israel finally has a prime minister willing to take the necessary action to put a stop to the Supreme Court's power grab and so defeat the gravest threat Israel faces as a Jewish and democratic state.
The End of Ambiguity for the Israeli Center-left (Ravit Hecht, Haaretz+) Lawmaker Ofer Shelah’s declaration of his ambitions to lead the Yesh Atid party has breathed oxygen into the battered body of the left wing. This is not only an exciting political drama in its own right – Shelah has arisen against his friend, opposition leader and party chairman Yair Lapid and is threatening to take his family party from him, and try to open it up to the broadest possible primaries along the way. But it’s more than that: This declaration could become the first sparrow of something new flocking our way. Like his friend Tel Aviv-Jaffa Mayor Ron Huldai, who is characterized by unapologetic, blunt directness – see the Lebanese flag on his City Hall or the removal of billboards that showed Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh defeated on their knees.
Ruling by High Court Chief Justice Hayut and a Justice Meltzer to erase Mitzpe Kramim (outpost) is not a legal event, but a political event (Kalman Liebskind, Maariv) This is how the ruling that will lead to the destruction of a Jewish settlement, whose location was determined by the state, and which no person has made any claims against any of its residents, all following a procedure conducted by Palestinians who were not even required to prove a connection to the place.
The Toxic Antisemitism That Trump and Corbyn Share (Anshel Pfeffer, Haaretz+) Jeremy Corbyn’s gone, but Donald Trump traffics in exactly the same selective antisemitism.
The calm in Gaza will not last for long (Ron Ben-Yishai, Ynet) The threat posed by the coronavirus pandemic helped lead Israel and Hamas to reach a quick resolution in the latest round of cross-border violence, but with no long-term solution in sight the next escalation is just a matter of time.
From Gaza to Lebanon, Coronavirus Presents Israel With New Opportunities (Amos Harel, Haaretz+) Israel is able to manage risks and promote new alliances. But the entire region is entering a waiting game, with all eyes on the U.S. election.
Coronavirus is turning Gaza’s nights even darker (Mohammed Moussa, 972mag) Besieged and bombed, Gaza has imposed a lockdown to stem an outbreak of COVID-19 — an unwanted guest that we are in no condition to host.
Iran's Syrian proxies are not going away (Alex Fishman, Yedioth/Ynet) A series of recent violent incidents on Israel's northern border is a signal, whether from Hezbollah or Tehran, that they are an ever-present threat despite Russian efforts to oust them from the area - and the IDF must not take the situation lightly.
Putting Hezbollah 'out of business' (Michael Sussman, Israel Hayom) What's clear from Israel's experience in Lebanon in the 1980s, and that of America in Iraq and Afghanistan, is that trying to overthrow regimes and install replacement governments has not delivered desired results.
Turkey and Greece in Explosive Battle Over the Mediterranean’s Gas Reserves (Zvi Bar'el, Haaretz+) The dispute has actually escalated into a military standoff, with Erdogan making the battle over natural resources part of his country’s neo-Ottoman profile.
The attempt to change the Law of Return: Harm to the future of the Jewish people (Avigdor Lieberman, Maariv) The repeal of the grandchild section of the Law of Return [that allows anyone with at least one Jewish grandparent to immigrate to Israel - OH] will constitute a serious violation of Zionist values. The “Who is a Jew" debate must not continue to divide our society. A special guest column by chairman of Yisrael Beiteinu party, Avigdor Lieberman.
Repeal of the Law of Return: The grandson who may disband the coalition (Kobi Nachshoni, Ynet Hebrew) What at first appeared to be a trolling attempt by MK Bezalel Smutrich of the opposition could cause an earthquake on one of the explosive issues - the question of “Who is a Jew"?
'I didn't want to leave the Israeli army, but I was in a real crisis'
This week at the Tel Aviv airport: A young woman who moved to Israel alone as a teen in search of independence, and a couple who felt that even though life in Canada is comfortable, Israel is where they really belong. (Interviewed by Yael Benaya in Haaretz+)
Prepared for APN by Orly Halpern, independent freelance journalist based in Jerusalem.