J Street News Roundup 8/19/2014

August 19th, 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

Dick Morris Talks To JStreet.org's, Alan Elsner, WPHT Philadelphia

J Street Vice President for Communications Alan Elsner stressed in an interview that there is no military solution to the Gaza crisis or the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Top News and Analysis

LIVE UPDATES: Palestinian delegation head denies reports of progress in Cairo talks, Haaretz

Israel and the Palestinians have agreed to extend the ceasefire in Gaza by 24 hours to allow negotiations in Cairo to continue, in an attempt to see if an agreement between the sides can be reached. Conflicting reports emerged Monday night concerning a long-term agreement between Israel and the Palestinian factions and its contents. Palestinian sources said that the agreement includes the opening of border crossings in coordination with the Palestinian Authority; the transfer of building materials into Gaza under international supervision; extension of Gaza’s fishing zone from six to nine nautical miles, and to 12 miles following future talks; and future deliberations on the creation of a Gaza port. Meanwhile, the release of prisoners would be delayed for a month after the agreement was signed, and the rebuilding of Gaza would be carried out under the authority of a unified Palestinian government.

Israel coordinated with US on gradual end of Gaza blockade, Ynet

Israeli officials said that Israel is coordinating with the US to define the details of a future permanent accord with Hamas and that Secretary of State Kerry is expected to arrive in Israel next week.

Poll finds almost no support for accepting Hamas's demands, Jerusalem Post

According to a new poll of Israeli Jews, 58% said Israel does not have to meet any Hamas demands and should continue to fight until Hamas surrenders, while 41% said Israel should respond positively to Hamas’s demands that are reasonable in terms of Israel’s national security.

IAEA expects progress by deadline in Iran nuclear inquiry, Reuters

The International Atomic Energy Agency chief said on Monday that Iran had begun implementing transparency measures ahead of an Aug 25 deadline, as part of a long-running investigation into suspected atomic bomb research by Tehran.


US-Israeli soldier gone missing, police appeal for help, Haaretz

A lone soldier from the United States has gone missing, the Israel Police announced Tuesday, as it issued an appeal to help locate him. There is reportedly no suspicion of kidnapping.

School year to open with recovery from Gaza war, Times of Israel

The Israeli Education Ministry issued guidelines on Monday aimed at helping pupils deal with a summer that included, among other activities, dashing for cover from rocket attacks and sitting in bomb shelters. Discussions are also to explore the meaning of freedom of speech in a democratic society, and how to allow open dialogue while refraining from “incitement.”

Abbas to meet with Hamas head in Qatar Thursday, AFP

President Abbas will travel to Doha on Wednesday and hold talks the next day with the emir of Qatar and Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal. From Doha, Abbas is expected to travel to Cairo.

Abbas orders probe into Hamas coup plot revealed by Israel, Times of Israel

Abbas ordered his security forces to investigate a revelation Monday that Hamas was planning a coup in the West Bank aimed at toppling him and starting a third intifada.

Netanyahu tried to hide Egyptian cease-fire proposal from cabinet, Haaretz

Prime Minister Netanyahu reportedly tried last week to hide from cabinet ministers the draft of a ceasefire agreement drawn up by Egypt.

UN envoy: Gaza needs houses and schools, not rockets and tunnels, Times of Israel

Robert Serry, the UN’s top envoy for the peace process, told the Security Council Monday that “the basic equation must consist of ending the blockade on Gaza, and addressing Israel’s legitimate security concerns.”

International court facing pressure to forgo Gaza probe, Times of Israel

As the United Nations Human Rights Council moves forward with its commission of inquiry into possible Israeli war crimes during Operation Protective Edge, Western pressure has so far dissuaded the International Criminal Court in The Hague from opening its own investigation.

Israel reportedly keeping human rights groups out of Gaza, Times of Israel

Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch said that the Israeli government has refused, on bureaucratic grounds, to grant them entry into Gaza.

Netanyahu unlikely to advance Likud race, Jerusalem Post

Netanyahu is unlikely to advance the next leadership race in his Likud party, due to frustration in the public about how he has handled the culmination of Operation Protective Edge and its aftermath, Likud sources said Monday.

Opinion and Analysis

Leonard Fein Took Us Beyond False Dichotomies, Forward

“Nowhere was Leibel [Fein]’s rejection of false dualism as courageous, influential and important as in his absolute identification of his pro-Israel Zionism, with his incessant and trenchant criticism of the policies of the Israeli government and polity,” writes Steven Cohen.

Erekat hits back at Indyk’s 'unfair' criticism, Al-Monitor

In an interview with Aaron Magid, Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat says that the Palestinians never “received any written proposal from Kerry. We are professionals here. The Americans presented 18 oral things and kept changing them.”

US missile shipment delay should teach Israel a lesson, Al-Monitor

“The missiles issue and Netanyahu’s entanglement in Gaza offer the United States a unique opportunity to pressure [Justice Minister Tzipi] Livni and [Finance Minister Yair] Lapid toward a moment of truth,” urges Akiva Eldar. “The United States must act now, no later than the day after the Nov. 4 congressional elections, to submit to the UN Security Council a binding and updated version of UN Resolution 242 based on the Arab Peace Initiative and the Clinton parameters.”

What Happens in Israel Doesn’t Stay in Israel, Forward

JJ Goldberg argues that anti-Semites would “have a much smaller audience for their ravings if Israel could find a way to lower the flames in the conflict.”

How Israelis and Palestinians Cope — With Two Different Wars, Forward

Naomi Zeveloff writes that “Jewish Israelis and West Bank Palestinians are witnessing — and living — two very different wars.”

Netanyahu is talking to Hamas. It's about time, +972

According to Noam Sheizaf, “Without Hamas, there will be no interim agreement and no long-term solution. The notion of the ‘moderates’ reaching an agreement between themselves while the ‘fundamentalists’ are ignored or even dealt with forcefully is a dangerous illusion.”

Stuck in the '90s: Israel’s peace camp is losing public interest, Al-Monitor

Mazal Mualem notes that Israeli supporters of peace “have yet to come up with an updated, new paradigm that can break through the conceptual gridlock in the search for a diplomatic solution.”

Unsung heroes of the Gaza war: A (very) partial list, Haaretz

Bradley Burston says that thanking those who are making a positive difference in this crisis is “not a cure for heartsickness. But it's the beginning of a treatment.”