Statement by Americans for Peace Now on The Antisemitism Awareness Act

Americans for Peace Now strongly condemns the passage of H.R. 6090, the Antisemitism Awareness Act, and urges the Senate to decline to consider this measure. This misguided bill would codify the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) Working Definition of Antisemitism, which conflates antisemitism with legitimate criticism of the policies and actions of the Israeli government. The lead drafter of IHRA, Kenneth Stern, has warned against using it as a cudgel against the millions of Americans, including many Jewish Americans, who object to the Netanyahu government’s decisions and actions.

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April 19, 2024- Americans for Peace Now (APN) applauds the Biden administration’s announcement of a third round of sanctions addressing extremist settler violence. This latest round of sanctions, which predominantly targets crowdfunding campaigns for violent extremist settlers, marks a significant advancement in efforts to confront and deter settler violence in the West Bank.

The decision to impose sanctions on entities facilitating fundraising campaigns for individuals like Yinon Levi and David Chai Chasdai, known for their involvement in violent acts against Palestinian civilians, sends a clear message that the United States is committed to disrupting the financial networks that sustain and enable extremist activities.

Hadar Susskind, President and CEO of Americans for Peace Now, remarked, “These sanctions demonstrate President Biden’s commitment to action against the epidemic of ongoing violence by extremist settlers. By targeting not only individual perpetrators but also those who provide financial support to fuel their violence, the United States is taking meaningful steps to undermine the systems that support settler violence.”

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Statement on House Israel-Gaza Aid Supplemental Bill

April 18, 2024 - Americans for Peace Now welcomes the release of the Israel-Gaza Aid Supplemental text in the House of Representatives. In the wake of Iran’s direct and unprecedented attack on Israel this week, we continue to support assistance that enables Israel to defend itself against Iran and other adversaries.

As important, this package contains vital humanitarian assistance to Gaza at a time when millions of Palestinians are facing famine and a lack of medical care and housing.

We continue to call for conditions to be placed on US military aid to Israel. Although this text does not include any new guardrails on the aid to Israel, there are existing mechanisms and laws to prevent the misuse of US military aid including section 620I of the Foreign Assistance Act and the National Security Memorandum issued in February. It is imperative that the President utilizes these existing mechanisms and laws to ensure that our assistance is used in accordance with American policy.

APN’s President and CEO Hadar Susskind said: “The Israel-Gaza aid supplemental bill should be passed by Congress and signed by President Biden. And like any and all aid to Israel, it should be used as mandated by American policy and international human rights law. The US must uphold the important principles of allyship while remaining consistent with our democratic values.”

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Statement by Americans for Peace Now on House Resolution 1117

April 10, 2024 - Americans for Peace Now (APN) strongly opposes House Resolution 1117 which claims to oppose efforts to “place one-sided pressure on Israel with respect to Gaza.”

House Republicans are again using straw-man arguments to make a show of support for the Netanyahu government. The Hamas attack on October 7 was horrific and there is and can be no rationale to defend it. And Israel is and was entitled to self-defense. Neither President Biden nor anyone in the administration has ever suggested otherwise.

The Biden Administration’s decision to abstain on the UN resolution calling for an immediate ceasefire and the return of all hostages was both politically sensible and an expression of important American values. In the midst of a growing famine and with tens of thousands of civilians dead, the UN resolution was a reasonable attempt to restrain the Netanyahu government from continuing to pursue a war with no meaningful defined goals and no benefit to Israeli security.

APN’s President and CEO Hadar Susskind said: “House Republicans can continue to throw meaningless tantrums on behalf of their political ally, Prime Minister Netanyahu. Or they can observe that Biden Administration pressure has provided for the opening of the Erez crossing, the immediate transfer of more humanitarian aid and possibly a step toward the cessation of large-scale hostilities. I remind them that the goal of all people should be ending the war and moving toward a real peace. We suggest they work with their Democratic colleagues to do whatever it takes to bring this war to a close, and begin working on long-term political solutions that sideline Hamas and resolve the conflict.”

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Statement by Americans for Peace Now on the Passage of the UNSC Ceasefire Resolution

March 25, 2024 - Americans for Peace Now (APN) strongly supports President Biden’s decision to allow passage of the United Nations Security Council resolution calling for a ceasefire in Gaza. The resolution demands an immediate ceasefire for the month of Ramadan, that would lead to a lasting and sustainable ceasefire. It also demands the immediate and unconditional release of all hostages.

The US vetoed three earlier ceasefire resolutions and continues to provide Israel with military aid. Now, in the wake of Netanyahu’s cancellation of an Israeli delegation’s visit to Washington to discuss the invasion of Rafah, President Biden should be clear that the US will oppose any Rafah operations that compromise the safety of the more than one million civilians there. Additionally, we call upon the administration to follow the existing US law that conditions continuing military aid on the free flow of humanitarian aid to Gaza civilians.

APN’s President and CEO Hadar Susskind said: “Netanyahu can cancel his ministers' trips and throw tantrums, but refusing to engage with Israel’s only powerful ally will achieve nothing other than deepening its isolation. If Netanyahu moves forward with a Rafah operation without agreement with the US, he will demonstrate once again that he is prioritizing his own political survival over the future of the people of Israel. This war needs to come to an end. Until it does, President Biden should make sure that any US aid is used only in compliance with US law.”

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Conference of Presidents Members Rebut Statement on Majority Leader Schumer Meeting

March 20, 2024 - We are deeply disturbed by the condemnatory statement issued yesterday by the Conference of Presidents (COP) following a meeting with Majority Leader Schumer. Though the critical COP statement was made in the name of the CEO and President, it claims to speak for COP “membership” when in fact it clearly fails to reflect the diversity of views within the COP. 

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APN Applauds Biden Administration’s Sanctions on Extremist Settlement Outposts

Americans for Peace Now (APN) welcomes the news that the Biden administration has announced a second round of sanctions under the President's executive order to address extremist settler violence. This new tranche of sanctions targets outposts in addition to individuals. As such, it represents a significant step in the effort to address ongoing settler violence.

By targeting outposts rather than solely focusing on individuals, the United States is sending a powerful message that it will not tolerate logistical or financial support for settlers’ attacks against Palestinian civilians.

Americans for Peace Now’s President and CEO, Hadar Susskind said: “For too long, illegal outposts have served as launchpads for settler violence. These actions, including freezing assets and imposing visa bans, demonstrate the United States’ firm commitment to curbing settler violence.”

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Statement- Americans for Peace Now Welcomes Temporary Gaza Seaport

Americans for Peace Now welcomes President Biden’s State of the Union announcement that the US will build a temporary seaport outside the Gaza Strip to facilitate the delivery of emergency humanitarian aid.

While welcoming the dramatic move, APN also urges the Biden administration to pressure Prime Minister Netanyahu to immediately allow vastly greater aid deliveries through the ground crossings between Israel and Gaza.

While humanitarian aid is essential to save lives now, ultimately, there is only one way to end this crisis. The war must come to an end.

APN’s President and CEO Hadar Susskind said: “As I sit in Jerusalem having met this week with Israeli political leaders, kibbutz members from the Gaza envelope, families of hostages, American diplomats and Palestinian leaders, it is overwhelmingly clear that there is only one way out of this crisis. Return the hostages. Send aid to Gaza. End the war, and begin once again traveling down the long road to peace.” 

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Americans for Peace Now Strongly Condemns Recent Demolitions in Al-Walaja

Americans for Peace Now (APN) strongly condemns the recent demolitions in the Palestinian village of al Walaja, near Jerusalem, where three homes were destroyed today, following the demolition of two homes last week.

The demolitions follow repeated failure by Israeli authorities to fulfill their responsibility to prepare a master plan for al-Walaja, which would allow residents to legally live and build in their village. Additionally, the government has refused to accept a master plan that the residents of Walaja paid for and prepared with a professional planner. In fact, Israeli authorities seem committed to blocking growth at al-Walaja and demolishing existing structures because of a planned road that will serve adjacent settlements.

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Americans for Peace Now (APN) welcomes last night’s announcement of the memorandum titled "Safeguards and Accountability With Respect to Transferred Defense Articles and Defense Services," issued by President Biden and modeled on Senator Chris Van Hollen’s recent amendment to the foreign assistance supplemental bill. APN commends President Biden and Senator Van Hollen for their commitment to oversight and transparency in the utilization of US security assistance.

This memorandum is an important step towards ensuring that US security assistance aligns with international law, including humanitarian principles. The memorandum requires recipient countries to provide credible and reliable assurances that they will adhere to international humanitarian law and facilitate US humanitarian assistance in areas of conflict in advance of receiving US assistance.

Hadar Susskind, APN’s President and CEO said: "We have long called for transparency and accountability measures to ensure Israel’s use of US military assistance aligns with existing US and international laws. This memorandum signifies an important step towards oversight and responsible use of US assistance.”

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