News Roundup for January 12, 2022

January 12, 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

Progressive Israel Network Welcomes Indefinite Postponement of Construction in E-1 Area, Progressive Israel Network
Responding to news that plans to advance settlement housing units in the E-1 corridor linking East Jerusalem to the northern West Bank have been indefinitely postponed, the Progressive Israel Network, which J Street is proudly a member of, issued a statement welcoming the news that the Israeli government will not be building Jewish settlements in the E-1 for the near future. The statement includes, “We applaud the Biden Administration’s efforts to prevent such construction, and urge them to continue to push back against settlement expansion more broadly…Just as past US administrations made their strong opposition to settlement construction in this strategic area clear to Israeli governments, we, members of the Progressive Israel Network, see this as a positive step even as we remain concerned by the simultaneous advancement of 3,500 settlement housing units south of Jerusalem.”

Top News and Analysis

JNF Tree-planting in Israel’s Negev Ends After Days of Clashes With Local Bedouin, Haaretz
The Israeli government said on Wednesday that future work by the Jewish National Fund in the Negev will be negotiated by coalition partners, in a bid to ease tensions after days of violent clashes over forestation work on the land used for agriculture by local Bedouin.


Soldier Wounded in Suspected Car-ramming Attack in West Bank, Haaretz
A 19-year-old solider was struck by a car and wounded in the northern West Bank on Tuesday, in what the military said was a possible car-ramming attack.

Israeli Police Shattered This Palestinian Elder’s Bones — And Drove Away, 972 Mag
Ali Awad and Awdah Hathaleen report, “On the afternoon of January 5, the Israeli occupation forces entered the Palestinian village of Umm al-Khair in the Masafer Yatta region of the South Hebron Hills, where we live, to confiscate unregistered Palestinian cars. An elderly man from the village, Haj Suleiman al-Hathaleen, tried to peacefully prevent them from leaving with the cars, when an Israeli police tow truck ran him over, causing severe injuries throughout his body. He is lying in critical condition in the hospital, closer to martyrdom than to life.”

Israel’s Lapid celebrates 10 years since founding Yesh Atid, Al-Monitor
Ten years after founding his own party, Foreign Minister Yair Lapid keeps low profile so as not to jeopardize his chances of taking over the premiership in a year and a half.

Israeli Government Coalition Teeters Amid Conflict Over JNF Tree-Planting in Bedouin Villages, JTA
Members of one of Israel’s Arab political parties are vowing to boycott Knesset proceeding, and thus threatening the coalition that governs by a slim majority, over what they see as an attack on their constituents among the Bedouin Arabs of Israel’s Negev region.

Israel Gives U.S. Army Officers Tour of Hebron Led by Settlement Spokesman, Haaretz
U.S. Army officers were given a tour of the West Bank city of Hebron last week led by the spokesman for the city’s Jewish settler enclave, in a trip organized by a senior Israeli commander.

Opinion and Analysis

Saving the Iran Nuclear Deal Requires Balancing it, The National Interest
Abolghasem Bayyenat argues, “[R]ather than insisting that the JCPOA be restored strictly in its original form and implemented per its letter, the parties should seek to redress the agreement’s imbalance in regard to its enforcement mechanisms and delivery of its economic benefits. Failing to address these important deficiencies is likely to pave the way for an Iran with a far more advanced and unconstrained nuclear capability enjoying nuclear threshold status, or a disastrous military conflict with it that has the potential to engulf the whole Middle East region and beyond.”

Arabic Is the Legacy of Many Jews. Why Fear It in the Knesset?, Haaretz
Former Minister of the Interior Uzi Baram writes of recent events in the Knesset, “No decent person could avoid being sympathetic to the vast majority of Israel’s Arabs who are trying, despite an uncaring establishment and racist and humiliating attitudes, to be valuable citizens in Israeli society.”