News Nosh 03.05.14

APN's daily news review from Israel
Wednesday March 05, 2014

Quote of the day:
"The crowd that comes is responding positively and also the artists, to whom we send the posters for approval, they really love the idea."
-- David Saidov, artistic director of the "Yellow Submarine" music club in Jerusalem, on the Arabic added to advertising posters for performances of Jewish Israeli performers.**

Front Page News:
Yedioth Ahronoth
  • (Putin) Sent a message to the US - The Cold War: Russia held test for inter-continental missile
  • Putin, conquer me // Nahum Barnea
  • A kiss for the (beauty) queen
  • Getting more expensive without stopping - New report: Tel-Aviv now in 20th place of most expensive cities in the world
Israel Hayom

Peace Talk Highlights:
Today's Hebrew papers continued to focus on Ukraine and Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin's visit to Washington, specifically his AIPAC speech, in which he warned of Iranian missiles reaching the US, called to boycott the boycotters and he demanded Palestinian recognition of a Jewish state in exchange for peace, and which senior PLO official Nabil Shaath said signified the end of the peace talks. Yedioth's Orly Azoulay pointed out that "two days after he got a cold shower from Obama, Netanyahu received a warm reception from (AIPAC) lobby for Israel. Meretz Chairwoman MK Zahava Gal-On was neither impressed with Netanyahu's speech or the applause he received by AIPAC participants. According to Gal, "the statement by Netanyahu in his introduction that Jerusalem is the eternal and united capital expressed his perception of the US government position, according to which, any agreement with the Palestinians requires compromise and division of sovereignty. Applause won't change the reality, which Netanyahu is leading us to: international isolation and ostracism." (NRG Hebrew) Shaath suggested a Syria Geneva talks-style conference instead, if the peace talks collapsed. Maariv/NRG Hebrew reported that the US State Department is angry with US President Barack Obama for his interview with Jeffrey Goldberg, in which he warned Netanyahu of losing US and international backing if he didn't make peace. A US State Department official close to US Secretary of State John Kerry and an Israeli official told Maariv that the interview was done behind Kerry's back and that "Obama attacked Netanyahu lashing out at him in a personal way that undermined (Kerry's) honest efforts."  At the same time, the papers also report that Obama promised Netanyahu he would pressure Abbas to agree to extend the talks and accept the agreement. Shaath, however, said there would be no extension of talks without a settlement freeze. And Maariv/NRG Hebrew's Asaf Gabor quotes the Palestinian official news agency, WAFA, which reported that in talks between Kerry and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, Abbas gave three conditions for extending talks: freezing settlement construction - even if 'quietly', release of more prisoners beyond the 104 pre-Oslo prisoners and US financial gestures.

Quick Hits:
  • Cleared for publication: He carried out an attack in revenge for the death of his neighbor - Fadi Ibrahim Al-Huda Walid, 28, a resident of Birzeit, was the one who committed the stabbing attack in Petach Tikva in revenge for the IDF killing of Muatazz Washaha, 24, inside his home. (NRG Hebrew and Maan and Israel Hayom)
  • UN report: 300,000 Palestinians live in Area C of West Bank - New figure is double than 2008 estimate; quarter of Palestinians living in areas under full Israeli control reside in Jerusalem district. (Haaretz+)
  • Israeli forces raid Nablus village, clashes erupt - Israeli forces raided the village, assaulted a number of people, and fired dozens of tear-gas canisters under the pretext that a firebomb was thrown at an Israeli military jeep at the village’s junction. (Maan
  • **Coexistence nightlife version: "Jews and Arabs who have fun together (in Haifa and Jaffa) is no longer new" - The "The Yellow Submarine" music center in Jerusalem has began to post signs for shows in Arabic. Artistic director, "This way we'll promote a more egalitarian public space." (NRG Hebrew-Jerusalem
  • Video: The killing of 16-year-old Samir Awad - Amnesty International released video documenting the 2013 killing of Samir Awad, 16, by Israeli forces who shot him in the back of the head in Budrus village in January 2013. Amnesty said it may amount to an extrajudicial execution. (Maan+VIDEO
  • Settler leader captured in Kusra village was expelled (from outpost) - More than half the residents of the settler outpost of Eish Kodesh signed a letter calling on radical right-wing activist Pinchas Bar-On, 23, to relocate elsewhere because of his violent activities in the area (against Palestinians). Bar-On made headlines when he was beaten by Palestinian villagers after being caught with other settlers in the village on suspicion of preparing to make a 'price-tag' attack on it. Bar-On: The Shin Bet is pressuring the residents to expel me." (Maariv, p. 1/NRG Hebrew and Yedioth, p. 10) 
  • From DiCaprio to Eastwood, Netanyahu's star-studded LA dinner - Robert De Niro, Barbra Streisand and many other Hollywood stars to attend Q&A session with Israeli prime minister at producer Arnon Milchan's home. (Yedioth/Ynet
  • Lieberman: Hamas has representatives in Knesset - Foreign minister's attack shows his moderate stance abroad is a cover for his racist views, say Israeli Arab lawmakers. (Haaretz+)
  • Islamic Movement top official in Israel gets eight months in prison - Sheikh Ra’ad Salah had been convicted of incitement to violence during a sermon in Jerusalem in 2007. (Haaretz+ and Ynet
  • IDF undercover unit nabs wanted Hamas commander in West Bank - Ayoub al-Qawasmi, suspected of planning terror attacks during the 2nd intifada, was planning to rebuild Hamas' terror infrastructure in the West Bank. (Ynet and Maan)
  • Security establishment sources: US preventing giving visas to our people - Requests by dozens of members of the military, Shin Bet and Mossad for US visas last year were denied. According to testimonies, the phenomenon is growing - without Israel or Washington provide an explanation or reason. (Maariv/NRG Hebrew)
  • New at Ariel University: Matchmaking guidance - Latest innovation at West Bank university: Providing counseling for single students and staff who are seeking the perfect spouse. (Haaretz+)
  • Google to nurture Israeli female entrepreneurs - With Google’s backing, UpWest Labs will invest in female start up entrepreneurs in Israel and Silicon Valley. (Globes)
  • Israel confirms: Asylum seekers secretly spirited away to third countries - In first such admission, Interior Minister Gideon Sa’ar says increasing numbers depart of their own free will. (Haaretz+)
  • Watch: Paratroopers "conquered" Tel-Aviv's Carmel Market - IDF soldiers practiced "dry" urban warfare late Tuesday night in the narrow alleys between the closed stalls of the outdoor market. The residents in the area were unfazed. (Yedioth, p. 10/Ynet+VIDEO)
  • Israeli drones to patrol Brazilian skies during World Cup - Drones join tanks, remote-controlled robots, thermal cameras and other security measures to be deployed by federal government. (Haaretz
  • Agriculture ministry signs $4.1 million deal with Saudi foundation - The agreement with the charity foundation of Saudi prince al-Waleed Bin Talal will support a program for the reduction of poverty and the establishment of small agricultural businesses. (Maan
  • Israeli innovation in limelight at annual TV trade show - 'Focus on Israel' event at MIPTV to share Israeli success stories. (Haaretz+) 
  • U.S. activist says detained, beaten by police in Cairo - Code Pink co-founder Medea Benjamin was en route to Gaza, tweets from Egypt: 'Help. They broke my arm.' (Haaretz+)
  • Cairo court outlaws Hamas activities in Egypt - Hamas condemns decision, saying it harms Egypt's image and its role toward the Palestinian cause. (Agencies, Haaretz)
  • Egyptian court rules to ban Hamas activities - Cairo court decision bans activities by Hamas in Egypt, branding it a terrorist organization. Court orders that Hamas offices in the country be shut down and all dealings with the group be suspended. (Agencies, Israel Hayom)

The second exodus of Egypt’s Jews (Ofer Aderet, Haaretz+) New book celebrates one of the most glorious Jewish communities in the Arab world, before Israel was founded in 1948.
Is a Settlement Boycott Best for Israel? 
The boycott, divestment and sanctions movement has called for worldwide disassociation with Israel to end the occupation. Even many supporters of the two-state solution, though, condemn the movement. But what about a boycott of the territories, and all activity within them, to end the occupation? Would that be in the best interest of Israel and the most likely path to peace? A powerful debate between APN's Lara Friedman and Rabbi Daniel Gordis in the New York Times. (NYT and APN)

How Israel has done its part (Haaretz Editorial) Building housing in the settlements is the Netanyahu government’s real answer to negotiations.
Netanyahu's AIPAC speech – predictable and conventional (Ron Ben-Yishai, Ynet) The prime minister's speech was without passion, just like the speaker himself, telling the audience exactly what they wanted to hear.
Netanyahu at AIPAC: Old shticks, new tricks and an intriguing promo for peace with the Palestinians (Chemi Shalev, Haaretz+) The Ukrainian crisis moved Netanyahu to tone down his criticism of the U.S. administration’s nuclear negotiations with Iran, so he concentrated his fire on the boycott movement instead.
Obama the realist? (Elliot Abrams, Israel Hayom) The U.S. president's policies have weakened America's sway in the world, as our Arab and Israeli friends in the Middle East -- and more, recently, the Russians -- are all saying quite publicly.
At Netanyahu meet, Obama puts on a show for the cameras (Barak Ravid, Haaretz+) U.S. president already sent Netanyahu the message via the Bloomberg interview, and preferred to avoid a public confrontation at this time.
Kerry's framework agreement is better than the messianism of the right-wing (Ben-Dror Yemini, Maariv/NRG Hebrew) Obama closing his eyes against the risks in separation, but the Israeli right-wing and also the Israeli government are shutting their eyes to the danger of a bi-national state.
Hidden in Netanyahu's key demand: Risk to U.S.-Israel ties (Bradley Burston, Haaretz+) What if Bibi's Jewish state recognition ultimatum works too well, sinking the two-state option? And what if Americans then prefer that the one nation no longer be a Jewish state?
Hamas paying the price of A-Sisi's popularity (Dr. Mordechai Keidar, Maariv/NRG Hebrew) A-Sisi is sure that the Egyptian public that opposes the Muslim Brotherhood will be sympathetic to the confiscation of Hamas' property, and his image will improve in the presidential elections.
Netanyahu’s AIPAC speech: A red alert for settlers (Barak Ravid, Haaretz+) With his address, the prime minister continues his very slow but steady move toward the Israeli center.
Attack on Syria-Lebanon border: A risk worth taking (Eliezer (Chiney) Marom, Yedioth/Ynet) Latest alleged Israeli strike added Hezbollah and Iran into the game, but thwarting the transfer of weapons is a sensible investment which will pay off in the future.
Egypt turns its tentacles on Hamas (Zvi Bar'el, Haaretz+) Clampdown leaves Gaza government on brink of bankruptcy.
Israel's warped refugee policy (Aeyal Gross, Haaretz+) Instead of protecting refugees as required by law, Israel boasts of its success in taking away their liberty and cajoling them to leave.
Anything but an RPG (Amira Hass, Haaretz+)Using arms is foolish, because that is Israel’s game, in which it excels and which it is liable to bring it down to the point of no return of brutalization.
Israel has no 'city square' in which to protest (Zvi Bar'el, Haaretz+) There are plenty of reason to take to the streets but you won't see Tahrir or maidan happening here in Israel.
Putting our faith in magic slogans (Kobi Niv, Haaretz+) And other methods Israelis use to avoid peace.

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