Will Netanyahu’s Pyromaniac Allies Burn the West Bank?

Israel’s incoming government seems likely to escalate the already alarming violent instability in the West Bank.

Senior Israeli security officials are reportedly warning the politicians – both outgoing but mostly incoming – of further decline in the security situation in the West Bank, urging restraint and self-discipline.

Well, good luck to anyone trying to restrain and discipline Itamar Ben-Gvir, Bezalel Smotrich and their fellow travelers, as well as thousands of Israeli soldiers policing the West Bank, who see the November 1st election results as a license to brutalize Palestinians and Israeli anti-occupation activists.

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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- November 23, 2022

1. Bills & Resolutions
2. Media (general)
3. Media & Members (The Next Congress)
4. Members on the Record (Israel & Palestine)
5. Members on the Record (Iran)
6. Members on the Record (Saudi Arabia)
7. Members on the Record (other countries)

1. Bills, Resolutions & Letters

None.

Letters

(END IRAN DIPLOMACY) Scott letter to Biden: On 11/22/22, Sen. Scott (R-FL) sent a letter to President Biden urging him to “immediately announce that the negotiations will not move forward at any time during your administration.” The letter frames this demand in terms of standing with Iranian protesters, but its core argument is: “We must acknowledge the evil and murderous Iranian regime wants to produce nuclear weapons. The United States must protect ourselves, and all our allies and partners, including Israel, by working to ensure that threat never actualizes.”

Also see:

  • Scott press release
  • Scott Twitter thread, “The brave words and actions of the Iranian people are an inspiration to all freedom-loving people. (1/2) It’s time for @JoeBiden to stand with them in word and deed and announce that his administration will never resume nuclear deal negotiations with the evil Iranian regime. (2/2)”

(UN OVERSIGHT ON YEMEN) Omar-Castro et al letter to Blinken: On 11/18/22, Reps. Omar (D-MD) and Castro (D-TX) led a letter, co-signed by 11 Democratic House colleagues, to SecState Blinken, urging the Biden Administration to “use its influence at the United Nations Human Rights Council to work towards the establishment of an independent, international investigative mechanism on Yemen at the earliest opportunity…

Also see:

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APN Strongly Condemns Jerusalem Terror Attacks

Americans for Peace Now strongly condemns the two bombings in Jerusalem today.

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APN Joins First Amendment Supreme Court Amicus Brief

Americans for Peace Now (APN), together with three other American progressive pro-Israel pro-peace organizations, submitted an amicus brief urging the U.S. Supreme Court to hear a constitutional challenge to a law penalizing boycotts of Israel.

Submitted jointly by APN, J Street, T’ruah, and Partners for Progressive Israel and prepared by the Georgetown Institute for Constitutional Advocacy and Protection, the brief demonstrates how throughout history, Americans -- and particularly American Jews -- have engaged in boycotts as an expression of their ideological commitments. The brief argues that eliminating constitutional protection for boycott participation threatens Americans’ First Amendment rights.

None of the groups that submitted the brief support boycotting Israel, but they do support Americans’ constitutional right to boycott. APN does support boycotting products made in Israeli West Bank settlements, outside the lines of sovereign Israel.

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Legislative Round-Up- November 18, 2022

1. Bills & Resolutions
2. Media (general)
3. Media & Members (Middle East in US Elex)
4. Members on the Record (Palestine)
5. Members on the Record (Israel)
6. Members on the Record (Iran)
7. Members on the Record (Saudi Arabia)
8. Members on the Record (other countries)

1. Bills, Resolutions & Letters

(JUSTICE FOR SHIREEN) HR 9291: Introduced 11/14/22 by Carson (D-IN) and 18 cosponsors, the “Justice for Shireen Act” aka, “To require a report on the death of Shireen Abu Akleh.” Text of the bill reads: “(a) In general.—Not later than 30 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Secretary of State, in consultation with the Director of National Intelligence and the Secretary of Defense, shall submit to Congress a report on the death of Shireen Abu Akleh. (b) Matters To be included.—The report required by subsection (a) shall include— (1) an identification of those individuals or entities that carried out, participated in, or were otherwise complicit in, or responsible for the death of Shireen Abu Akleh; and (2) an identification of any United States defense materials or services were implicated in the death of Shireen Abu Akleh. (c) Form.—The report required by subsection (a) shall be submitted in unclassified form and made available to the public at the same time on the website of the Department of State.” Referred to the House Committee on Foreign Affairs.

Also see:

  • Carson 11/14/22 statement in the Congressional Record
  • Carson press release announcing the Act back on 7/28/22
  • Carson tweet 11/14/2022: Tweet – “If these reports are correct, this is a step in the right direction towards justice and accountability. I’m proud to have introduced the #JusticeForShireen Act, requiring a US investigation to provide answers into the killing of American citizen, Shireen Abu Akleh. Link to quoted tweet

(CONFLATING CRITICISM OF ISRAEL WITH ANTISEMITISM) S. Res. 837 [text not available at the time of publication of this Round-Up — will cover this again next week]: Introduced 11/17/22 by Scott (R-SC), “A resolution recognizing Israeli-American culture and heritage, the contributions of the Israeli-American community to the United States, and condemning antisemitic violence and discrimination.” Referred to the Committee on the Judiciary.

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Hard Questions, Tough Answers- The Bennett-Lapid Interlude: A Summing-Up (November 21, 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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Boycotts Are a Proud Part of American Freedom of Speech

The recent Israeli election resulted in what will likely be the most right-wing government to ever take office. This, combined with the prospect of Republican gains in Congress, may have alarming consequences concerning Americans' right to express dissent.

In the past seven years, 34 states passed laws or implemented executive orders penalizing boycotts of Israel. These laws are, in large part, the outcome of a close and troubling relationship between the Israeli and U.S. right-wing. Alarmingly, Republican state legislators have begun using these laws as a template to stifle dissent on other issues. Legislation has now been introduced in 15 states penalizing boycotts of the fossil fuel and firearms industries. Four of those states have passed such bills into law. At the end of the month, the conservative lobbying group ALEC will propose legislation for states to enact at a closed-door summit, which would protect all businesses from boycotts. With the shifts taking place in both governments, and with ALEC's new "model legislation," which of my constitutionally protected political freedoms will be next on the chopping block?

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Statement- APN Welcomes US Investigation into the Killing of Shireen Abu Akleh

Americans for Peace Now (APN) welcomes news that the Biden administration has decided to launch an independent investigation into the killing of Shireen Abu Akleh, the Al Jazeera reporter who was shot to death during an IDF operation in the Jenin refugee camp in May. Abu Akleh was an American citizen, and her family, like those of all US citizens killed abroad, has the right to a US investigation into the circumstances of her death.

APN’s President and CEO Hadar Susskind said: “We have called for an independent US investigation into Abu Akleh’s death since she was killed because we believe that her family deserves it and because the US government should know the clear and unequivocal truth about exactly what happened on that day. For a US investigation to succeed, full cooperation by Israeli and Palestinian authorities will be vital. We urge the government of Israel and the IDF to be forthcoming and aid the US investigation. We thank members of Congress who joined us in demanding that the Biden administration open an independent investigation and we thank APN’s activists who supported congressional actions in this regard.”

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