News Roundup for December 10, 2021

December 10, 2021
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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.

Top News and Analysis

Iran nuclear talks pulled back from brink as Tehran shifts stance, The Guardian
Efforts to revive the Iran nuclear deal have been hauled back from the brink of collapse as Tehran revised its stance after pressure from Russia and China and clear warnings that the EU and the US were preparing to walk away.


Gantz Expected to Meet With Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah, The Jerusalem Post
Defense Minister Benny Gantz is expected to meet next week with Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas at the Muqata in Ramallah.

Israel’s Gantz Joins Opposition to UAE Pipeline Deal, but Bennett Will Make the Final Call, Haaretz
Defense Minister Benny Gantz has announced his opposition to the controversial deal with the United Arab Emirates to ship large quantities of oil through Israel, as environmentalists continue to call for the contract’s cancellation.

In New York, Israeli Minister Promises Progress on Western Wall’s Non-orthodox Prayer Space, JTA
Israel will set plans in motion to renovate the non-Orthodox prayer space at the Western Wall, an Israeli official said Tuesday in New York.

Israel Closes Probe of Officers Who Shot Palestinian Assailant in Jerusalem Attack, Haaretz
Israel’s Justice Ministry said on Thursday that it was closing an investigation into two Border Police officers who shot dead a Palestinian assailant last Saturday as he lay on the ground.

Israeli author David Grossman suggests Israel’s occupation has become ‘apartheid’, JTA
Speaking about the state of Israel’s government in an interview with Galatz, the Israel Defense Forces’ radio station, prominent Israeli author David Grossman suggested Israel’s occupation had turned into an “apartheid” regime. “Maybe it should no longer be called an ‘occupation,’ but there are much harsher names, like ‘apartheid,’ for example,” he said in the interview Thursday.

Biden officials warn of turning to ‘other options’ if diplomacy fails as nuclear talks resume in Vienna, CNN
The Biden administration is looking to tighten enforcement of Iran-related sanctions as US officials continue to warn that the window for a return to the agreement is narrowing.

Opinion and Analysis

Away From Gaza, One Question Forced Me to Face What I’d Been Trying Hard to Suppress, Haaretz
Mohammed Azaiza reflects, “In a few days…I’ll be returning to Gaza and to my children, whom I miss very much. I’ve enjoyed the calm here, and want my children to have it too; to live without the political rifts between Palestinians, without the fear of death, without Israeli restrictions that violate their right to a normal life. I’d like them to enjoy travel without having to worry about permits or the right to freedom of movement, which can be taken for granted here in the Netherlands. I’d like them to be able to look ahead, to the future, to see the horizon open before them and all the beauty it may bring.”

Israeli settlers have a new target, and it’s not in the West Bank, 972 Mag
Samah Salaime writes, “In the eyes of Palestinians, the term “flag march” evokes images of Jerusalem. It connotes, for us, the struggle over the Holy City and Al-Aqsa, and provocations by masses of far-right Israeli Jews wrapped in flags, taking over the city, and reaffirming Jewish supremacy. Those images flashed before the eyes of the Arab residents of Lydd, a so-called mixed city in central Israel, after it was announced that it would have its own flag march on Sunday, Dec. 5. The provocative march, which included hundreds of young right-wing Jews, was deliberately scheduled in Lydd, which has been ground zero for far-right groups trying to assert their power and intimidate Palestinian residents ever since the violence that erupted in the city and would come to engulf much of Israel-Palestine in May.”