News Roundup for February 6, 2020

February 6, 2020

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J Street in the News

St. Louis Jews doubt Trump peace plan will succeed, St Louis Jewish Light
“Rabbi Daniel Bogard, Central Reform Congregation, member of J Street, left-leaning Israel advocacy group: ‘The Trump administration has overtly positioned themselves as being on the Israeli government’s side — and I don’t think that’s in the best interest of Israel — as opposed to being on the side of advocating for a two-state solution. I tend to think that’s problematic; I think it gives license to some of the worst instincts to some of Israel’s worst leaders.’”

Top News and Analysis

Israeli troops hurt, 3 Palestinians killed in new violence, AP
A spike in Israeli-Palestinian violence on Thursday left at least three Palestinians killed and a dozen Israeli troops wounded in a rash of attacks and clashes a week after the Trump administration released its long-anticipated Mideast plan. The new spate of attacks places the plan — which was already considered a long-shot because it greatly favors Israel and was rejected outright by the Palestinians — on even shakier ground, and sparked fears of a return to deadly rounds of violence of the past. The plan has sparked calls by Israeli nationalists for Israel to annex parts of the West Bank — land Palestinians want for their hoped-for state — and has set off tensions in the region.

Car-ramming Attack in Jerusalem: 12 Israeli Soldiers Wounded; Manhunt Underway, Haaretz
Twelve Israeli soldiers were wounded overnight Wednesday in what Israeli security forces have described as a suspected car-ramming attack in central Jerusalem.

A Year to Kahol Lavan’s Founding: How Israel’s Party of Generals Became an Effective Political Force, Haaretz
Anshel Pfeffer writes, “Riding high in the polls, Benny Gantz’s Kahol Lavan currently has no reason to feel blue. But what will it do the day after Netanyahu is gone?”


Olmert, Abbas to host joint press conference against Trump peace plan, The Jerusalem Post
Former prime minister Ehud Olmert and Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas will hold a joint press conference in opposition to US President Donald Trump’s peace plan, according to Israel’s Channel 12.

Palestinian Authority police officer shot by IDF in Jenin dies of wounds, Times of Israel
Around the time of his death, Palestinians shared video footage on social media of the moment the officer — Staff Sgt. Tareq Badwan, 25 — was hit by Israeli fire, apparently showing that he was standing in uniform inside a police station in Jenin at the time and did not appear to be a threat to the Israeli soldiers operating in the city.

Kushner to Discuss Mideast Plan at UN as Annexation Pressure Mounts in Israel, Haaretz
Jared Kushner, U.S. President Donald Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser, is scheduled to brief members of the UN Security Council on Thursday regarding Washington’s Middle East peace plan, which was published last week.

Trump aide ties Israeli settlements to rising anti-Semitism, AP
President Donald Trump’s national security adviser warned Palestinians on Wednesday that Israeli settlements will continue to expand because rising anti-Semitism around the world means more Jews will immigrate to Israel.

Hamas calls for more confrontations with Israel and settlers, Times of Israel
The Hamas terror group on Wednesday called on Palestinians to step up confrontations with Israel after Israeli security forces shot dead a Palestinian teenager, who the IDF said threw a Molotov cocktail at troops during clashes in the West Bank city of Hebron

Draft resolution condemning Israeli plans to annex settlements is circulating at the UN, JTA
The text — a salvo against President Donald Trump’s Palestinian-Israeli peace plan announced last week in Washington, D.C. — is being circulated to the 15 member states of the Security Council by Tunisia and Indonesia, Reuters reported Wednesday.

After Week of Escalation, Israel Limits Gaza Fishing Zone, Haaretz
Israel has reduced Gaza’s fishing zone from 10 to 15 nautical miles after a week of escalation sparked by the unveiling of the Trump administration’s peace plan in Washington, the Defense Ministry said Wednesday.

Netanyahu said to warn a Gaza war is possible before March 2 elections, Times of Israel
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told municipal leaders in the Gaza area on Wednesday that Israel could launch extensive military operations in the Palestinian enclave before the upcoming Knesset elections if Palestinian terrorists continued launching rockets and airborne explosive devices at southern Israel.

Opinion and Analysis

Trump’s Plan Vows to Shower Mideast With Billions of Dollars. But Where Will They Come From?, Haaretz
Zvi Bar’el writes, “Not only does the ‘deal of the century’ not say where the money will come from, but ignores landmines along the road to the regional economic cooperation.”

Don’t eulogize the two-state solution just yet, +972 Mag
Said Zeedani writes, “Trump’s peace deal may have declared the death of the ‘classic’ two-state formula, but that doesn’t mean we should abandon the idea altogether.”

Europe Kowtows to Israeli Apartheid, Haaretz
Gideon Levy writes, “The EU really is a paper tiger versus Israel because of its paralyzing structure, because of the rightist wave overtaking its members and because it surrenders to the emotional blackmail exerted upon it by Israel and the Jewish lobby.”