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Yossi Alpher is an independent security analyst. He is the former director of the Jaffee Center for Strategic Studies at Tel Aviv University, a former senior official with the Mossad, and a former IDF intelligence officer. Views and positions expressed here are those of the writer, and do not necessarily represent APN's views and policy positions.

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*This op-ed  ran in Haaretz on July 7, 2022. Read the original HERE.

U.S. President Joe Biden speaking on Wednesday.

U.S. President Joe Biden speaking on Wednesday. Image source: Haaretz.

 

As you all know and as some of you undoubtedly remember, since I was elected to the Senate in 1972, I have been to Israel more times than I can count. I visited Israel both as a Senator and as Vice President, and throughout these many years I have been a staunch supporter of Israel and I am deeply committed to its security and wellbeing.
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Ice Cream, Honesty, and Occupation

 

Everyone likes ice cream. And everyone believes that they support peace. It’s just a question of what that peace looks like. And in the case of the American Jewish community, and American political leaders, the vast majority of people will tell you that the peace that they support is a two-state solution, with Israel and Palestine living side-by-side as independent nations. Sounds good, right?

But alas, while many of our national organizations and political leaders espouse their belief in peace and two states, when it moves from the realm of the theoretical into the practical, when someone has the nerve to point out that in the two-state solution, one of those states is Palestine, then things get “complicated.” And, of course, “complicated” is a polite code-word for “I have no good answer for why I suspend my erstwhile values and support endless illegal occupation, but I would still like to call myself progressive.”

A two-state solution isn’t the only possible option for Israeli-Palestinian peace, but it is the one with the broadest support. But let’s be clear. If you (honestly) support two states, that means supporting the creation of a viable, independent Palestine. And where do you think that is going to be? Hint, it isn’t Uganda. In order for that thing that you theoretically support (a 2SS) to happen, the Occupation has to end. In order for that to happen, we must be clear that the Occupied Territories are not Israel.

You know who did just that? Ben & Jerry’s. That’s right, an ice cream company has, at considerable cost, used its  voice and its business to remind people that the Occupied Territories are not Israel. They were clear and honest about what they believe. They support Israel, and they oppose the Occupation.

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Hard Questions, Tough Answers- Testing Lapid; Testing Biden (July 5, 2022)

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Yossi Alpher is an independent security analyst. He is the former director of the Jaffee Center for Strategic Studies at Tel Aviv University, a former senior official with the Mossad, and a former IDF intelligence officer. Views and positions expressed here are those of the writer, and do not necessarily represent APN's views and policy positions.

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Legislative Round-Up: July 1, 2022

Produced by the Foundation for Middle East Peace in cooperation with Americans for Peace Now, where the Legislative Round-Up was conceived.

1. Bills, Resolutions, Letters
2. Hearings & Travel
3. On the Record

1. Bills, Resolutions & Letters

(FY23 STATE & FOREIGN OPS APPROPS BILL – HOUSE) HR XXXX: This week the House Appropriations Committee completed its work on the FY23 State and Foreign Operations Appropriations bill. As always, the SFOPS bill includes annual funding for Israel, the West Bank/Gaza, Egypt, and the rest of the Middle East. It also includes (as always)  far-reaching limitations/conditions/oversight/vetting requirements/reporting requirements on the Palestinians, as well as some conditions/reporting related to other aid programs.

To avoid sending out a Round-Up weighing in at some 40+ pages, I’ve posted my in-depth summary/analysis of all Israel/Middle East-related provisions of the bill — as approved by the SFOPS Subcommittee and then amended/approved by the full House Appropriations committee — as this separate report.

General info/links about the bill and its path so far are below. The bill now heads to the House floor for amendments/grandstanding/debate.

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Last fall, Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz declared that six prominent Palestinian rights groups were “terrorist organizations.” These civil society groups, Al Haq; Addameer; Defense For Children International-Palestine; Bisan; the Union of Agricultural Work Committees; and the Union of Palestinian Women’s Committees, work directly with Palestinian women and girls, children, low-income families, prisoners, and civil society activists, providing direct services and monitoring human rights abuses by both Israeli and Palestinian authorities.

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Today, Representatives Mark Pocan (D-WI) and Jan Schakowsky (D-IL) led 29 of their colleagues in sending a letter to Secretary of State Antony Blinken, calling on the administration to use every diplomatic tool at its disposal to ensure that Israel does not further advance plans to build settlements in E-1. These plans have been called “doomsday settlements” because implementing them would pose an irreconcilable challenge to a lasting peaceful solution between Israel and the Palestinians by threatening the territorial contiguity necessary for a viable Palestinian state.

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Statement: APN to Lapid: Show, Don't Tell!

As Yair Lapid becomes Israel's prime minster today, APN congratulates him and urges him to take this opportunity to show the world what an Israel under his leadership looks like.

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Recording: Peace Now's Dana Mills on Israel’s Political Crisis and the Occupation

Israel’s outgoing “change government” featured a creative makeup and some new domestic policies, but little change with regard to Israel’s relations with the Palestinians.

What was the Bennett government’s policy on West Bank settlement construction? What can we expect from Yair Lapid, the incoming prime minister? What has the outgoing government done in addressing other aspects of the conflict? What role will this issue play in the upcoming elections campaign? What does yet another election campaign mean for Israel's anti-occupation movement?

To answer these and other questions, APN hosted a webinar Peace Now’s acting executive director, Dr. Dana Mills, on Wednesday, July 6th at 11:00 Eastern Time. Mills elaborated on Peace Now’s new report, which documents and analyzes the West Bank settlements policy of the outgoing government.

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Legislative Round-Up: June 24, 2022

Produced by the Foundation for Middle East Peace in cooperation with Americans for Peace Now, where the Legislative Round-Up was conceived.

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1. Bills, Resolutions, Letters
2. Hearings
3. On the Record

FMEP Events:

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