News Roundup for December 30, 2022

December 30, 2022
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J Street News Roundup

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.

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Top News and Analysis

Israel’s Netanyahu Returns With Hard-Right Cabinet Set To Expand Settlements, Reuters
Benjamin Netanyahu was sworn in as Israel’s prime minister on Thursday in a comeback at the head of a hard-right cabinet that promises to expand Jewish settlements in the occupied West Bank and pursue other policies criticised at home and abroad. The 73-year-old political veteran, who is on trial for graft charges he denies, has sought to calm concerns about the fate of civil rights and diplomacy since his bloc of nationalist and religious parties secured a parliamentary majority in a Nov. 1 election.

White House Sending Jake Sullivan to Israel for Talks With Netanyahu, Axios
The Biden administration plans to send national security adviser Jake Sullivan to Israel in mid-January for talks with newly sworn-in Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu over his government’s policies, according to five Israeli and U.S. officials. The White House is concerned about the new Israeli government’s policies on Palestine — including plans to expand settlements and legalize outposts in the occupied West Bank.

2022 Was Deadliest Year for West Bank Palestinians in Nearly Two Decades, The Washington Post
Israeli forces killed more Palestinians in the West Bank in 2022 than in any year since the United Nations began systematically recording fatalities in 2005, after the last major Palestinian uprising. The surging violence, experts warn, reflects a combustible mix of on-the-ground and generational changes — and could escalate further as Israel’s most far-right government, which includes Jewish supremacists who have incited violence against Palestinians, is sworn in Thursday.


Israel’s New Diaspora Minister Chikli Called Tel Aviv’s Pride Parade a ‘Disgraceful Vulgarity’, Haaretz
Likud’s Amichai Chikli, who said that being LGBTQ is ‘no reason for pride’ and has distanced himself from his Conservative Jewish roots, will soon oversee relations with the Diaspora’s largely liberal community.

Israel Indicts Soldiers for Trying To Bomb Palestinian Home, The Washington Post
Israel’s military said its prosecutor has filed indictments against two soldiers who allegedly hurled an explosive device at a Palestinian home in the occupied West Bank, a rare instance of Israeli troops facing serious charges over an offense against Palestinians.

Protesters Rally Against New Israeli Government, The New York Times
Benjamin Netanyahu’s government and its manifesto have raised concerns about increased tensions with Palestinians and protections for L.G.B.T.Q. people.

Palestinians Urge World To ‘Reject Any Dealings’ With New Netanyahu Government, The Times of Israel
The Palestinian Authority called for an international boycott of Israel’s new government over its hardline, right-wing agenda, saying it poses “an existential threat to the Palestinian people.”

Opinion and Analysis

Netanyahu’s New Ministers Have Very Strict Ideas About Who Is a Jew, The New York Times
Anshel Pfeffer notes, “For years, there has been a growing gap between Israelis and American Jews when it comes to Israel’s policies toward the Palestinians. But today the issue threatening to divide the Jewish people is not about geopolitics or the occupation of the West Bank. It’s about Judaism itself: Jewish fundamentalists are now the dominant element in the Israeli governing coalition led by Benjamin Netanyahu. They plan a hostile takeover of Jewish identity.”

The Duty to Fight This Extremist Israeli Government, Haaretz
Haaretz’s Editorial Board writes, “Contrary to what Netanyahu told the Knesset, democracy isn’t just majority rule. Fighting a government like this one, which is emptying democracy of all its values, isn’t sedition, as he charged; it’s a duty incumbent on both the opposition and civil society. This is their great time of trial.”

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