News Roundup for July 14, 2021

July 14, 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

Palestinians Find New Unity After War With Israel, Foreign Policy
Tensions between Israelis and Palestinians remain high after a fourth war with Hamas ended in a shaky cease-fire in May, and home demolitions and evictions of Palestinians, supported by the Israeli government, continue in both East Jerusalem and the West Bank. But Palestinians—and even Israelis—say that the Palestinian cause has been galvanized like never before, and disparate groups of Palestinians are discovering a new sense of unity in the rubble of the 11-day war.

The Iran nuclear deal, six years on, Al Jazeera
Signatories of Iran’s 2015 nuclear deal with world powers have seen their hopes of restoring the landmark accord by its signing anniversary on Wednesday dashed as multiple factors complicated the process. A clear date has yet to be decided for the start of the seventh – and likely final – round of talks in Vienna to revive the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), the deal that was signed by Iran, China, Russia, France, Germany, the United Kingdom, and the United States on July 14, 2015.

Can Israel’s New Center Hold?, Foreign Affairs
Yohanan Plesner writes, “Under Netanyahu, there was no hope of addressing the foundational issues of Israeli politics; his political survival depended on division and polarization. And, in truth, it remains unclear whether any government can foster the kind of unity the country desperately needs. This one, at least, has a chance to start trying.”


Iran’s president warns weapons-grade enrichment possible, AP
Iran’s outgoing president on Wednesday warned his country could enrich uranium at weapons-grade levels of 90% if it chose, though it still wanted to save its tattered nuclear deal with world powers. President Hassan Rouhani’s comments, carried by the state-run IRNA news agency, came as he also criticized Iran’s wider theocracy for not allowing his government to reach a deal soon to restore the 2015 atomic accord.

Israeli Restrictions Are Preventing Gaza’s Water System From Being Repaired, Haaretz
Due to the ban imposed about two months ago by Defense Minister Benny Gantz against bringing raw materials, construction materials and “non-humanitarian” items into the Gaza Strip, most of the damage to its water and sewage infrastructure caused by the war in May has not been repaired.

Israeli PM wants Gaza foreign aid run through vouchers: Minister, Al Jazeera
Israel wants foreign aid to Gaza disbursed through a voucher system as a safeguard against donations being diverted to bolster the Palestinian enclave’s Hamas rulers and their arsenal, a government minister said on Tuesday. Humanitarian agencies put the latest reconstruction costs for the impoverished Gaza Strip at $500m following 11 days of cross-border fighting in May.

‘Just the beginning’: UAE opens Tel Aviv embassy as sides hail ties, Times of Israel
The United Arab Emirates on Wednesday formally inaugurated its embassy in Israel, capping a process that began with an agreement to normalize diplomatic relations nearly a year ago.

Opinion and Analysis

Like Anti-vaxxers, Netanyahu Also Prefers to Ignore Science, Haaretz
Itay Rom writes, “Science is a complicated business, but some things in the debate over coronavirus vaccines are easily understood – for instance, the fact that Benjamin Netanyahu’s recent statements on the issue contradict the conclusions of the world’s most important health agencies and have no scientific basis whatsoever.”

​The PA stumbled from one failure to another. Has its reckoning arrived?, +972 Magazine
Majeed Malhas writes, “The decades-long decline of the Fatah party has proven to Palestinians that the PA is an obstacle, not a vehicle, for their national liberation.”

PA security forces are not serving the Palestinian people, Al Jazeera
Yara Hawari writes, “As the PA continues to repress political opposition, people across the world are largely watching on in silence. However, it is more crucial now than ever before for anyone supporting the Palestinian struggle to recognise that the PA and its security forces are antithetical to our collective liberation.”