J Street Daily News Roundup 2/25/2014

February 25th, 2014

J Street works to promote an open, honest and rigorous conversation about Israel. The opinions reflected in articles posted in the News Roundup do not necessarily reflect J Street's positions, and their posting does not constitute an endorsement from J Street.

Questions, comments, or suggestions? Please email newsroundup@jstreet.org

J Street in the News

A challenge to AIPAC, Jewish Currents

J Street Vice President of Communications Alan Elsner challenged AIPAC Conference delegates to put support for Secretary of State Kerry’s initiative at the top of their advocacy agenda and to ask their representatives to express their support publicly for Kerry.

Recognizing a ‘Jewish State’, Jewish Journal

Elsner said that “there are some possible advantages in seeking mutual recognition between Israel and Palestine… Formal recognition of Israel as a Jewish homeland by the Palestinians would certainly be interpreted as a powerful statement of goodwill and peaceful intent by the Israeli public.”

J Street to have town hall, Jewish Journal

J Street Southern Regional Director Scott Brockman said he expects about 200 supporters at the 2 Campaign Town Hall in Boca Raton. "The main thrust is to have a very visible demonstration of public support [for two states],” said Brockman. He added, "Kerry called for a great constituency of peace. We're now in active negotiations for a two-state solution."

John Dingell's pro-Israel, pro-peace voice will be missed in Congress, J Street

J Street wished Congressman John Dingell (MI-12) well in his retirement and said that his voice as a tireless advocate for two-state resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict will be sorely missed in Congress.

Kerry, Lew to address AIPAC, Jerusalem Post

Kerry and Treasury Secretary Jack Lew will both address the American Israel Public Affairs Committee during their policy conference next week. “Kerry is also expected to pitch his peace push between Israel and the Palestinians, supported nominally by AIPAC, but not with the enthusiasm of other groups, such as J Street.”


Germany’s Merkel backs main Israeli stances in peace talks, Times of Israel

In Israel, German Chancellor Angela Merkel expressed public support for Israel’s security requirements and its demand to be recognized by the Palestinians as a Jewish state, giving a boost to Prime Minister Netanyahu’s flagship positions while also backing ongoing peace talks. Merkel also reiterated her opposition to Israeli expansion of West Bank settlements, saying they make a positive outcome of the talks less likely.

Oren: International sanctions are more dangerous than missiles, Jerusalem Post

Former Israeli Ambassador to the US Michael Oren warned that international sanctions against Israel, should peace talks fail, pose a greater danger to the country’s future than the possibility of missiles falling on Tel Aviv. It is therefore important that Israel accepts the framework document that Kerry is expected to unveil in the near future, setting out the terms for future negotiations, Oren said.

Netanyahu emerges victorious after court battle with Danon, Jerusalem Post

Netanyahu emerged victorious in his battle against the Likud Central Committee chairman Deputy Defense Minister Danny Danon at the Supreme Court in Jerusalem on Monday.

The Court ruled that Netanyahu can determine the agenda for the next Likud convention that is expected to take place on March 23rd in Tel Aviv. But judges ruled that Danon can present an alternative proposal for the agenda at the convention.

Environment Ministry officials visits Rawabi, future green Palestinian city, Jerusalem Post

Environmental Protection Minister Amir Peretz and senior ministry officials visited the future municipality of Rawabi on Monday, which will soon become the first planned and environmentally friendly Palestinian city.

UN rights envoy points to apartheid in Palestinian areas, Reuters

Richard Falk, UN special rapporteur on human rights in Palestinian territory, said that Palestinian rights are being violated by Israel's prolonged occupation of Palestinian territory and "ethnic cleansing" of East Jerusalem.

Kid gloves seen softening Israeli crackdown on pro-settler vandals, Reuters

Despite dozens of arrests of price tag attack suspects, there have been few convictions, and the vandalism continues to occur almost weekly.

Israeli police, Palestinians clash on Temple Mount, Haaretz

More than a dozen people were injured in clashes between Palestinian protesters and Israeli police at Jerusalem's Temple Mount on Tuesday morning.

Opinion and Analysis

AIPAC's Times Op-Ed: Hold the Noose Steady, Bibi, Forward

Responding to a recent AIPAC oped on Iran negotiations, JJ Goldberg writes, “It would have been nice if the Iranians had agreed to put their entire nuclear program on the table, but that was never going to happen. It’s the nature of a negotiation that it ends up somewhere in the middle between what each side wants. To think you can enter negotiations and end up with everything you wanted is to misunderstand the nature of the process. To adopt an unattainable goal is to adopt no goal at all. As the Talmud teaches… If you seize too much, you seize nothing.”

Clarifying the Security Arrangements Debate: Israeli Forces in the Jordan Valley, Washington Institute for Near East Policy

Michael Eisenstadt and Robert Satloff explore possible compromises between Israel and the Palestinians regarding the issue of security.

Jewish/Palestinian history without borders, Al-Monitor

Akiva Eldar says that he is willing to give up Israeli sovereignty over Greater Israel, but will never deny the Jewish legacy and affinity for the land.

Meretz parliamentarian pushes bill to compensate Israeli settlers, Al-Monitor

Mazal Mualem interviews Meretz MK Ilan Gilon, whose bill to compensate settlers who would relocate in the event of a peace deal was recently defeated.