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A Rabbinic Response to Escalation in Anti-Semitic Attacks, J Street Blog
Responding to an escalation in anti-Semitic attacks, J Street Rabbinic Cabinet Director Rabbi Jonah Geffen wrote, “We at J Street stand with our Jewish family the world over, horrified by what we have witnessed most strikingly in Paris, but worldwide. We call upon world leaders, especially the leaders of the nations of Europe, to recognize the present spread of the disease of anti-Semitism and to work earnestly and swiftly to combat it in an enlightened way.”
J Street U Communications Co-Chair Benjy Cannon said, “Wanting the national iteration of Judaism to live up to universalistic values has actually compelled hundreds of young Jewish activists to get involved with J Street. Despite a deep appreciation for other issues and other problems, leaders at over 60 campuses of US universities and colleges have decided to make Israel 'their issue.’”
Top News and Analysis
A senior Israeli official said that Prime Minister Netanyahu has ordered the IDF to strike targets in the Gaza Strip, after Hamas and Islamic Jihad refused Egypt’s proposal for a ceasefire and fired dozens of rockets at Israel. Israel’s security cabinet had accepted the Egyptian proposal during a meeting morning. Overnight , a rocket struck a parked car in Eilat, wounding ten. Since Operation Protective Edge began over a week ago, more than 900 rockets and mortars have landed within Israel, though only a fraction in urban regions. Israel has launched more than 1,300 air strikes in Gaza, killing 192 Palestinians and wounding more than 1,100. people.
Obama: Even after truce, status quo unsustainable, Times of Israel
Describing the pictures from Gaza and Israel as “heart wrenching,” President Obama said, “The situation in Gaza reminds us again that the status quo is unsustainable and that the only path to true security is a just and lasting peace between Israelis and Palestinians, where differences are resolved peacefully and in ways that respect the dignity of all people.”
Kerry slams Hamas for bucking ceasefire with Israel, Jerusalem Post
Secretary of State Kerry said, “I cannot condemn strongly enough the actions of Hamas in so brazenly firing rockets in multiple numbers in the face of a goodwill effort to offer a ceasefire, in which Egypt and Israel worked together, that the international community strongly supports.” Kerry reportedly canceled a planned trip to the Middle East morning, instead planning to fly back to Washington from nuclear negotiations in Vienna.
Iran Outlines Nuclear Deal; Accepts Limit, The New York Times
Iran’s chief nuclear negotiator, faced with an imminent deadline for an agreement with the West on the future of the country’s nuclear program, said in an interview that Iran could accept a deal that essentially freezes its capacity to produce nuclear fuel at current levels for several years, provided it is then treated like any other nation with a peaceful nuclear program.
A major speech by Iran's Supreme Leader has reportedly limited the ability of the Iranian delegation to make concessions at high-level nuclear talks.
Netanyahu’s mistake, Atlantic
Jeffrey Goldberg says that “Netanyahu's admission that he doesn't see a path to a truly independent Palestinian state serves no purpose except to convince that diminishing number of Palestinians who believe that the two-state solution is the best solution that they have no partner for compromise.”
Israel’s bloody status quo, The New York Times
Roger Cohen warns that once the current crisis in Gaza is over, things will look the same, but the status quo will continue to deteriorate until peace is achieved.
President Peres and Quartet Envoy Tony Blair praised Egyptian efforts to broker a ceasefire, stressing that it could not replace a final status peace agreement.
Right, left split on wisdom of ceasefire, Jerusalem Post
Right-wing lawmakers had called Israel’s acceptance of the ceasefire a grave mistake, while those on the left urged that it be accompanied by peace talks.
Hamas acting erratically but hardly harmed, sources say, Times of Israel
Despite days of punishing airstrikes, Israel’s military campaign has failed to inflict serious damage on the Hamas war machine.
Finance Minister Yair Lapid said, “Protective Edge isn’t a low-cost operation, because there’s no such thing as a cheap military operation. But there’s no price we won’t pay for the citizens of Israel.”
Jewish Federations of North America solidarity mission visits Israel’s worst-hit town and pledges to help.
Fight at pro-Israel rally started over stomping of Palestinian flag, Los Angeles Times
A pro-Israel demonstration outside a federal building in Los Angeles turned physical after protesters ripped a Palestinian flag away from a passing vehicle and began stomping on it.
Israeli warplanes said to kill 4 in Syrian Golan, Times of Israel
Israeli warplanes struck three administrative and military targets in Syria’s Golan at dawn , killing two security guards and two women.
Opinion and Analysis
The righteous among the Gazans, The New York Times
Nimrod Nir urges, “Israelis must remember to fight terror and not the Palestinians, and to defend ourselves from racism and hate as much as we do from rockets. Palestinians must fight for national self-determination without backing a regime that promotes the annihilation of Israelis. It’s the only way to end this conflict.”
According to Chemi Shalev, “The incessant bombing raids and the casualties inflicted on civilians have re-cast the [Hamas] as a pillar of Palestinian resistance against the evil Zionists.”
Jane Eisner reports from settlements across the Green Line.
Thoughts on Gaza, Partners for Progressive Israel
Peter Eisenstadt examines the “Gaza groundhog day wars.”
Letters, Jerusalem Post
Edward Goldstein writes, “A truly sovereign Palestinian state on the West Bank that is treated respectfully by Israel is the best way to destroy Hamas’s allure, proving that diplomacy works, not violence. The price of relentlessly creating a greater Israel is, tragically, more war.”