Hard Questions, Tough Answers with Yossi Alpher: March 3, 2014

This week, Alpher discusses the possible dynamics of PM Netanyahu arriving to talk with President Obama in the midst of the Ukraine/Crimea crisis; the influence of the Ukraine crisis on the Middle East; what we can expect in the weeks ahead regarding the American-sponsored framework agreement and Monday's Obama-Netanyahu meeting; and Netanyahu's thinking for the "day after" failure scenario.

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Press Release: Settlement Surge Looms Large over Netanyahu-Obama Meeting

As Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu landed in Washington today, the Israeli government’s Central Bureau of Statistics issued a report showing a whopping 123% surge in West Bank settlement construction in 2013, more than double the number of new settlement homes built in 2012.

The data was analyzed and highlighted today by Israel’s Peace Now (Shalom Achshav) movement. It confirms past interim reports by Peace Now’s Settlement Watch Project. Americans for Peace Now (APN), Shalom Achshav’s US sister-organization, joins Peace Now in condemning Netanyahu’s government for this reckless policy of settlement construction.

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Is a Settlement Boycott Best for Israel? APN's Lara Friedman in the New York Times

A powerful debate between APN's Lara Friedman and Rabbi Daniel Gordis in the New York Times.

Introduction

Israel’s expansion of settlements in the occupied territories has been an obstacle to the two-state solution, considered the most likely hope for peace with the Palestinians.

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PAST ACTION: Tell President Obama to stand firm with Netanyahu

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Update: this action, now closed, ran in March 2014. 

When President Obama meets Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu in the White House on Monday, their conversation will no doubt focus on two issues that are central to the Obama Administration’s foreign policy agenda: Iran and Israeli-Palestinian peace efforts.

Tell President Obama that you are a part of his constituency for peace. Make sure he knows that Americans who care about Israel have his back.

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Steven Kaplan and Sanford Weiner in the Jewish Journal: A victory against anti-Israel BDS

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Israelis and supporters of Israel are increasingly concerned about international pressure — and with good reason. There was last year’s directive from the European Union, which threatened important Israel-EU cooperation; the recent uproar about SodaStream, which brought Israel unflattering media attention; and the almost daily news of some European country singling out an Israeli company for negative treatment.

Are these victories for the global BDS movement — the movement calling on people and nations to boycott, divest from and sanction Israel? Absolutely not. 

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Book Review: What do you Buy the Children of the Terrorist who Tried to Kill Your Wife?

This is the eleventh in a series of reviews of books on Middle Eastern affairs. We asked Dr. Gail Weigl, an APN volunteer and a professor of art history, to review David Harris-Gershon's  new book.What-Do-You-Buy-For-the-Children-195x293

David Harris-Gershon, What do you Buy the Children of the Terrorist who Tried to Kill Your Wife? (London: One World, 2013). 325 pages. $13.70.

David Harris-Gershon has written a brave memoir that charts the traumatic and long-range impact of his wife Jamie’s near-death from a terrorist bombing at Hebrew University in 2002, and his route to healing by trying to understand the motives of the terrorist, Mohammad Odeh. 

There are several points of entry into Harris-Gershon’s story:  the opening section in which he recounts the bombing and actions of the bomber, his recollections of the aftermath interwoven with the history of his relationship with Jaime, and the summary of the historical context in which the attack took place.

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Peace Now and Meretz MK's Visit Hebron Marking 20 Years Since the Goldstein Massacre

Oppenheimer_Gal-On_Hebron"We came to show the Israeli public that the violent legacy of Goldstein is alive today in the price tag attacks, and in extremist settlers, like those here today." (Peace Now's Yariv Oppenheimer, pictured left with MK Zehava Gal-On)

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APN's 2014 Israel Study Tour – Save the Dates September 6-11, 2014

Participants will explore Israel and the West Bank focusing on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and efforts to resolve it. If you are interested and would like to be placed on the mailing list for the 2014 Israel study tour please email israeltour@peacenow.org

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Save the Date: Mandy Patinkin to Receive APN's Yitzhak Rabin Peace Award - April 27, 2014

The well-known actor and singer will be presented with the Yitzhak Rabin Peace Award on Sunday evening, April 27, in Los Angeles.  Plus, APN will be inaugurating the Arthur P. Stern Leadership and Justice Award, with David N. Myers and Nomi Stolzenberg receiving the award.

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Hard Questions, Tough Answers with Yossi Alpher: February 24, 2014

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This week, Alpher discusses a government legislative initiative intended to lead to increased military service for the ultra-orthodox; the Russian, Iranian and Hezbollah motives in supporting Assad; and what is the strategic significance of the first export deal signed with Jordan in Israel's Tamar Mediterranean gas field.

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