News Roundup for April 15, 2022

April 15, 2022
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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.

J Street in the News

AIPAC Is on the Wrong Side of Democracy, Boston Globe
Chairman of the J Street National Board Ambassador Alan Solomont and chair of J Street Massachusetts and a member of J Street’s National Board write, “The willingness of an organization of AIPAC’s stature to cast its lot with supporters of the Jan. 6 insurrection should serve as a wake-up call for all of us. The vast majority of American Jews, including many current and former AIPAC supporters, cherish liberal democracy and are committed to its survival in the United States and in Israel. While some leaders may fail to see the contradiction in turning their backs on these beliefs, we want to make clear that they do not speak for the Jewish community, in Boston or elsewhere. We call on others to make it absolutely clear that we stand proudly together on the side of democracy.”

Top News and Analysis

Clashes Erupt at Jerusalem Holy Site, Over 150 Palestinians Injured, NPR
Palestinians clashed with Israeli police at the Al-Aqsa mosque compound in Jerusalem before dawn on Friday as thousands gathered for prayers during the holy month of Ramadan. Medics said that at least 152 Palestinians were wounded. The holy site, which is sacred to Jews and Muslims, has often been the epicenter of Israeli-Palestinian unrest, and tensions were already heightened amid a recent wave of violence.


15-year-old Stabs Man in Northern Israel in Suspected Politically-motivated Attack, Haaretz
A 15-year-old girl stabbed a man in the northern Israel city of Haifa on Friday, in what the police suspect to be a politically-motivated attack. The victim is in a moderate condition, according to Magen David Adom, Israel’s emergency service, and has been evacuated to the intensive care unit at Rambam Health Care Campus.

Israel Successfully Tests New Laser Missile Defense System, AP
Israel’s new laser missile defense system has successfully intercepted mortars, rockets and anti-tank missiles in recent tests, Defense Minister Benny Gantz said Thursday. The Israeli-made laser system, designed to complement a series of aerial defense systems such as the costly Iron Dome deployed by Israel, will be operational “as soon as possible,” Gantz said. The goal is to deploy the laser systems around Israel’s borders over the next decade, Gantz added. The tests took place last month in the Negev Desert.

Hundreds Mourn Palestinian Boy Killed by Israeli Forces as Both Sides Report Violence Across the West Bank, CNN
Hundreds of people have turned out for the funeral of a 14-year-old Palestinian boy shot dead by Israeli soldiers in the West Bank village of Husan. The death of Qusai Hamamrah marked the second fatal shooting by Israeli forces in the village in five days and came amid a series of violent incidents and clashes across the territory overnight.

IDF to Shutter West Bank, Gaza Crossings for Palestinians on First Day of Passover, The Times of Israel
The Israel Defense Forces on Thursday announced the closure of crossings with the West Bank and Gaza Strip for the first day of the Passover holiday. The closure will begin Friday at 4 p.m. and remain in effect until just after midnight on Saturday, April 16. Passover begins on Friday evening and ends a week later. Security officials will convene Saturday evening to decide whether to extend the closure for the entire Jewish festival.

Opinion and Analysis

A Light Unto the Nations: Two-way Street for Passover, J Street
Rabbi Seymour Rosenbloom writes, “As we celebrate Passover will the message of freedom inspire us in our advocacy for Israel? Will we as American Jews work to improve the way Palestinians are treated? Will we strive to influence Israel to end settlement expansion and settler entitlement that tramples Palestinians’ human rights? Will we advocate that Palestinians living in territory under Israeli control get the same human and legal rights and guarantees as Israelis? Will we pursue the justice of a Two State Solution that ends the Occupation?”

How ‘This Is Not an Ulpan’ Uses Language To Ignite Change, J Street
In a new “Our Israel” profile, J Street speaks to ‘This is not an Ulpan. ‘“Ulpans are one of the most powerful tools in transmitting societal norms,” says Devon Spitzer, who serves as the Marketing Manager and International Outreach Coordinator at ‘This is not an Ulpan’. “You have people coming here either making Aliyah or travelers. And we asked, ‘What information are they getting when they leave ulpan?’”