APN's Debra Shushan in Ha'aretz: "The Day Donald Trump Was Crowned King in Jerusalem"

Along with many other U.S. Jews, I wanted to feel pride at the opening of the U.S. embassy in Jerusalem. But amid the carnage in Gaza, I felt nausea

Debra Shushan | May 16, 2018 | 

For Jews around the world, the opening of the U.S. embassy to Israel in Jerusalem should have been an occasion for jubilation and pride. And while for some it was, many of the rest of us watched the ceremony feeling a combination of nausea and cognitive dissonance.

There were at least three reasons to feel ill.

The first and most obvious is that the ceremony took place yesterday against the backdrop of carnage in Gaza.

While American and Israeli officials congratulated themselves in Jerusalem, denizens of the open-air prison which Israel continues to occupy (through its control of air, sea, and land routes out of Gaza and even of its population registry) were being shot to death by the dozens.

Continue reading

Shavuot: Let’s be mindful of the need to live in a just and humane society

D'var Torah from Barbara Green. long-time activist with Americans for Peace Now.

Shavuot is a joyous holiday representing the giving of the Torah at Mt. Sinai. The event itself is thought of as the moment when the ragtag group of Hebrews who had been wandering in the desert truly became a people -- the Jewish people.

A reading of the law, or the mitzvot as they are known in Hebrew, gives one the impression of a moral and ethical society. We are directed to remember the widow and orphan and stranger among us. One law is to serve both citizen and non-citizen alike. Wages must be paid before the sun goes down. And my favorite: If you see your enemy's ass lying in the road, you are to help it get up. Imagine: not only concern for an animal but for the enemy's animal.

And yet, selective reading of each of the major religions' holy books can be deceptive. Some of the laws are in conflict with others. Emphasizing some at the expense of others has created grave injustices.

And subverting the law by using it for crass political purposes, as the settler movement and its allies have done, tears at the basic precepts found in the Torah.

In Israel today, there is tension between those who believe strongly that man is made in the image of God (b'tselem Adonai) and those who privilege the land of Israel (the "Greater Israel" movement) above all else. Rabbi Michael Melchior has written: "I believe that those who censor the Torah of such concepts as the natural morality of man, as the belief that God has created every human being in His image, and as the basic human right to respect and dignity which stems from this belief, are desecrating the holy name of God." He continues: "Torah, Judaism, Zionism, and at times even God himself have been hijacked."

Those of us who have worked for decades for the establishment of Palestine next to Israel watch in horror now as that idea seems to be disappearing over the horizon. The Greater Israel folks are in the ascendancy with Benjamin Netanyahu as their leader and the U.S. as their enabler. But the struggle now is for more than the right of the Palestinians to a state of their own, or for the relief of the Gazans who suffer a humanitarian crisis of indescribable proportions. It is increasingly about the soul of the Israeli people. Are we still the people of justice and compassion set forth in the law? Have we foregone the ability -- or even the desire -- to help uplift our enemy's ass if it is lying in the road?

As we prepare for the holiday of Shavuot with its festive air, let’s be mindful of the need to live in a just and humane society -- and to extend those concepts to the citizen and stranger alike. The Torah the Jews received at Sinai still holds precepts we can all embrace.  

Continue reading

US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman's Hectic Week

Friedman Watch is bursting at the seams this week, with David Melech Friedman busy as a beaver. Here is the rundown of what the US Ambassador to Israel has been up to.

  • Master of Ceremonies: Friedman’s centrality in orchestrating the US embassy move to Jerusalem was underscored by the Ambassador’s headlining role at the opening ceremony. Opening the fête, Friedman said, “Make no mistake: Today's historic event is attributed to the vision, the courage, and the moral clarity of one person to whom we owe an enormous and eternal debt of gratitude: President Donald J. Trump.” On the heels of the celebration, Friedman received the Friends of Zion Award from the evangelical Christian group that festooned Jerusalem with “Trump Make Israel Great Again” signs. For more on why the ceremony might have turned your stomach and/or made your head explode, don’t miss the latest op-ed from APN’s Debra Shushan in Haaretz.
Continue reading

Americans for Peace Now calls on both Israelis and Palestinians to exercise responsibility and restraint tomorrow to avoid further bloodshed and deterioration toward another Israel-Hamas war.

Today's death toll on the Gaza border, 58 Palestinians killed and some 2,000 injured, of them eighty severely injured – seems to be the preamble for even heavier bloodshed tomorrow as Palestinians commemorate the 70th anniversary of the 1948 Nakba, which Palestinians observe as their national catastrophe.

Continue reading

Hard Questions, Tough Answers (May 14, 2018) - A violent week

HQ_TA_Banner_slot_logo

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.

This week, Alpher discusses Jerusalem, Gaza, Nakba Day, Ramadan, Iran, and the Lebanese elections; US National Security Adviser John Bolton's statement that a US embassy in Jerusalem “enhances the chances for peace”; international opinion concerning Israel’s position vis-à-vis Iran in Syria and the Jerusalem issue; Netanyahu's influence Trump's decision to withdraw from the JCPOA; and the unanwered questions that remain.

Continue reading

Shalom Achshav and APN: Alarmed by Destructive Impact of US Embassy's Opening in Jerusalem

Israel’s pre-eminent peace movement Shalom Achshav (Peace Now) and its American sister-organization Americans for Peace Now are alarmed by the negative impact of Donald Trump’s transferring of America’s Israel embassy to Jerusalem.

In a celebratory event attended by top American and Israeli officials, the Trump administration is today inaugurating its new embassy in Jerusalem.

Amid the pomp and circumstance, the destructive impact of this move appears to be lost on many in Israel and the United States.

Continue reading

Listen: Briefing Call with Jerusalem Expert Daniel Seidemann on Embassy Move

APN hosted a briefing call on Thursday, May 17th with Jerusalem expert Daniel Seidemann.

Danny discussed the impact that the Trump administration’s moving of America’s to Jerusalem has had on Israeli-Palestinian peace efforts, on Israeli-Palestinian relations in general and on dynamics in Jerusalem in particular.

Danny also addressed other developments on the ground in Jerusalem and in Gaza.

Continue reading

With his decision today to place the United States in violation of the Iran nuclear deal, Donald Trump has taken one of the most dangerous actions of his presidency. By withdrawing from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) and reimposing sanctions the US had waived in fulfillment of its obligations under the deal, Trump boosts hardliners in Iran who likely will push to exit the deal and restart Iran’s nuclear weapons program.

Trump’s move has potentially disastrous ramifications for both America’s national security and Israel’s. It pushes the United States and its allies closer to a regional war in the Middle East and could result in Iran’s leaping toward a nuclear weapon.

Continue reading

Hard Questions, Tough Answers (May 7, 2018) - Iran, Iran, Iran

HQ_TA_Banner_slot_logo

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.

This week, Alpher discusses Defense Minister Liberman's comment that "Israel has three problems: Iran, Iran, Iran"; the sense of urgency; the Iranian nuclear archive; Netanyahu's presentation; the argument that Israel is trying to goad Iran into responding militarily from Syria, thereby inviting a strong Israeli offensive against the entire Iranian deployment there; where Trump and Putin fit in; the argument that the threat is exaggerated; and Iran's awareness of all the arguments against reacting now with force against Israel and endangering its presence in Syria.

Continue reading

Creeping Annexation

Continue reading
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 89 10 ...133 134 135