In Memory of Mordeachai (Morale) Bar-On

Israeli society bid farewell this week to one of its giants, Mordechai (Morale) Bar-On, a person who helped build the state and was among the icons of its peace movement and its progressive camp. Morale was among the leaders of APN’s Israeli sister-organization, Shalom Achshav (Peace Now), and wrote a book that documented Israel’s peace movement. Bar-On passed away at 92.

Like many prominent leaders of Israel’s peace movement, Bar-On was a soldier and a general, having volunteered for the pre-state Hagana at the age of 14. He attended the Hagana’s first officers’ course in 1948 and was injured in the War of Independence several months later. In the mid-1950s, he was the personal assistant of then IDF Chief of Staff Moshe Dayan. In the 1960s he served as the IDF’s chief education officer. His intellect and commanding personality made him an Israeli icon. After the 1967 war, then IDF Chief of Staff Yitzhak Rabin chose Bar-On to write Rabin’s famous Mount Scopus speech.

Shortly after it was established in 1978, Bar-On joined the leadership of Shalom Achshav. Around the same time, he also joined the Council on Peace and Security, which in the late 1970s and early 1980s focused on dialogue between Israeli and Palestinian intellectuals. That included Palestinians who identified with the PLO. In 1984, when associating with Palestinian Liberation Organization officials was still illegal for Israeli citizens, Bar-On went on a speaking tour in the United States with the former mayor of the West Bank town of Halhoul, Muhammad Milhem, who was deported from the West Bank for his PLO connections. The two jointly advanced a two-state agenda. Forty million Americans watched a PBS documentary about the joint speaking tour.

Bar-On continued with an academic career and a career in public life, which included a short service as a member of Knesset representing the progressive Ratz party (1984-1986), the party that later became Meretz. Bar-On also served as the president of the New Israel Fund.

Among our pro-peace community, Morale Bar-on was often referred to as a moral compass of the peace movement. He was a highly appreciated and beloved elder of our “tribe.” He will be sorely missed. His memory is a blessing to us all.

APN Co-Signs Letter to Biden Urging him to Re-Join the JCPOA

Americans for Peace Now is one of more than 30 progressive organizations who signed a letter to President Joe Biden urging his administration to make good, promptly, on his commitment to rejoin the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), the Iran nuclear agreement.

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Press Release: ICC Investigation’s Message: End the Occupation

A month ago, the International Criminal Court (ICC) ruled that it has jurisdiction over the West Bank, East Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip -- territories under Israeli occupation since 1967. Today, as expected, ICC Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda confirmed her intention to open a criminal investigation into actions of Israelis and Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza Strip that are suspected as war crimes. The actions that will be investigated include Israel’s policy of constructing settlements in the occupied West Bank.

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APN Webinar (Thursday, March 4, 2021) - with Bernard Avishai and Sam Bahour

Please Join Americans for Peace Now for this timely webinar.

Thursday, March 4, 2021, 12:00 pm (ET)

The Israeli-Palestinian Confederation Model - with Bernard Avishai and Sam Bahour

Co-authors of the recent New York Times article, "Want Israeli-Palestinian Peace? Try Confederation"

As physical separation between Israel and a future Palestinian state seems increasingly difficult to accomplish, the confederation model is gaining momentum among scholars. To discuss the possible benefits of such a model, please join the co-authors of a recent New York Times article on the topic, Bernard Avishai and Sam Bahour. Avishai and Bahour will discuss the confederation idea on an APN webinar on March 4th at 12:00 noon (EST), in a conversation with APN Board member Geoffrey Lewis.

Sam Bahour is an American-Palestinian writer and management consultant living in Ramallah. Bernard Avishai is an American-Israeli university professor, author and business consultant living in Jerusalem.


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APN to Sec. Mayorkas: Revoke Trump Order Marking Settlement Products as "Made in Israel"

Americans for Peace Now, together with five other progressive American Jewish organizations, sent a letter to Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas on February 23rd urging him to revoke a Trump administration order, which requires marking products made in Area C of the West Bank (where Israeli settlements are located) as “Made in Israel.”

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APN Webinar (Thursday, Feb. 25, 2021) - with MK Meirav Michaeli

Please listen to the recording of this webinar.

Thursday, February 25, 2021, 12:00 pm (ET)

MK Merav Michaeli

Knesset Member

Israeli citizens will go to the polls in a month to elect a new Knesset. It’s the fourth round in two years, but it’s not déjà vu. There are several new developments. One of them is Merav Michaeli’s fresh leadership at the Labor Party. As the newly elected chair of a party, Michaeli is working to revive it and remake it as a relevant, powerful force in Israeli politics.

What do these elections mean for Israel’s left? What alliances is Israel’s Zionist left willing to create to deny Benjamin Netanyahu another term in office? Can Israeli-Palestinian peace be on the electoral agenda when the elections are first and foremost a referendum on Netanyahu? What are the prospects of a stronger alliance between Israel’s Zionist left and the Arab minority?

Knesset Member Michaeli addressed these and other questions on our briefing call, in conversation with APN Board member Jo Ann Mort and APN President and CEO Hadar Susskind. The webinar, another in a series on the coming elections took place on Thursday, February 25th, at 12:00 noon (EST)

In her nine years in Israeli politics, following a successful career in television and print journalism, MK Michaeli has established herself as a clear, courageous progressive voice, focusing on peace, social justice, women’s rights, and LGBT rights. One of Israel’s leading feminists, Michaeli has been socially active since the late 1990s, when she established a lobbying organization to assist and promote sexual violence victim centers across Israel. As a Knesset member, she consistently speaks out against the occupation and against the Israeli government’s inaction in pursuit of an end to the occupation.


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Recording of APN Feb. 23, 2021 Webinar Michael Sfard on Israel and the ICC

Listen to a recording of this Americans for Peace Now webinar.

Michael Sfard

International Human Rights Activist, Lawyer

The international Criminal Court (ICC) recently ruled that it has jurisdiction over the West Bank, East Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip — territories under Israeli occupation since 1967. This opens the path for the ICC to launch formal investigations against war crimes suspects, whether Israelis or Palestinians.

What does the ICC’s decision mean for Israel? How is it going to conduct investigations? Are charges against the Israeli individual Israelis imminent? What is the nature of the judicial procedure? Is the threat of ICC proceedings likely to influencing the conduct of the IDF in the occupied territories, or the Israeli government’s West Bank settlement policy? Is it likely to encourage Israel to engage diplomatically with the Palestinians?

Israeli human rights lawyer Michael Sfard addressed these and other questions in this webinar on Tuesday, February 23rd.

Sfard is an Israeli attorney who represents various Israeli and Palestinian human rights and peace organizations, movements, and activists, including Israel’s Peace Now movement. He is an expert in international humanitarian law and international human rights law. He was educated at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem and at University College in London.


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Press Release: APN Condemns JNF Board Decision to Buy West Bank Land for Settlements


Washington, DC – Americans for Peace Now (APN) strongly condemns the decision by the Jewish National Fund's Executive Board to start officially purchasing land in the West Bank to expand Israeli settlements.

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Statement: Stop JNF Plan to Buy West Bank Palestinian Land for Settlements

Americans for Peace Now (APN) is alarmed by reports that the Jewish National Fund intends to start officially purchasing land in the West Bank to expand Israeli settlements. Such a step would be a dramatic change in the JNF's policy, with potentially dramatic repercussions. It could significantly bolster the Israeli settlement enterprise, which is aimed at thwarting a future two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

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Commemorating Emil Grunzweig, 38 Years Later

Thirty Eight years ago, on February 10th 1983, Peace Now activist Emil Grunzweig was murdered by an extreme right Jewish terrorist at a Peace Now demonstration in Jerusalem.

Not far from the Prime Minister’s Office, the terrorist, Yona Avrushmi, lobbed a hand grenade at the front row of the Peace Now marchers. It killed Emil and injured nine of his friends.

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