News Roundup for July 30, 2021

July 30, 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.

J Street in the News

Ted Cruz blocks bill advancing Israel-Arab normalization, citing pressure on Israel to reach two-state solution, JTA
Sen. Ted Cruz is blocking the advance of a bill that would promote normalization between Israel and Arab states because it includes language enshrining a two-state solution as the preferred U.S. outcome to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. […] “The vast majority of American Jews and most American voters support a two-state solution,” J Street’s director of government affairs, Debra Shushan, said in a release this week. “Unfortunately for Senator Cruz, just like the status quo of occupation and injustice in Palestinian territory, this position is untenable. A majority of Democrats and Republicans in Congress recognize that a comprehensive two-state peace agreement is the only way to ensure that both the Israeli and Palestinian peoples can have freedom, self-determination and safety.”

Jewish US groups hail House bill giving aid to Israel, Palestinians, Times of Israel
Jewish-American organizations hailed the US House of Representatives for passing a bill Thursday that includes assistance to both Israel and the Palestinians. J Street said it was “particularly pleased” with the pro-Israel and pro-peace elements in the bill. The dovish Jewish organization said it would also “continue to lobby for legislation to require stronger, more specific transparency measures and restrictions on the end uses of US-sourced military equipment, including equipment bought with US aid to Israel, to ensure that it cannot be diverted to support acts of creeping annexation or other violations of international law. ”

Top News and Analysis

Israel will give third Covid vaccine shots to those 60 and older., New York Times
Israel will begin administering a third dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech coronavirus vaccine to those 60 and older, Prime Minister Naftali Bennett announced on Thursday, citing the rising risk of a virus surge fueled by the Delta variant.

Palestinian killed in West Bank clashes with Israeli troops, AP
Israeli troops shot and killed a 20-year-old Palestinian man, Palestinian health officials said, during clashes that erupted in the occupied West Bank following the funeral of a Palestinian boy killed by army fire the previous day. The Palestinian Health Ministry said the man, identified as Shaukat Awad, was shot in the head and abdomen during Thursday’s unrest in Beit Ummar, a town near the city of Hebron in the southern West Bank.


GOP candidate for Virginia House likens being a conservative teacher to being Jewish among Nazis, JTA
A history teacher running for the Virginia House of Delegates said that being a conservative teacher in Virginia today is akin to being Jewish in Germany during the 1930s. “To come out and say that you’re a teacher on the right is almost as dangerous as saying, as almost saying, going through Germany in the 1930s and saying ‘I’m Jewish.’ It’s gotten that bad,” Julie Perry said Wednesday in an online event entitled “Educators for Youngkin Coalition.” Glenn Youngkin is the Republican nominee for governor.

Deborah Lipstadt picked as Biden’s antisemitism envoy, Forward
President Biden plans to nominate Deborah Lipstadt as the State Department’s special envoy to monitor and combat antisemitism on Friday, sources familiar with the decision have confirmed. Lipstadt is a preeminent historian of the Holocaust who teaches at Emory University in Atlanta and was the protagonist of the 2016 film “Denial,” about her successful defeat of a libel suit filed by a Holocaust denier she had criticized.

Israeli-operated ship attacked near Oman amid Iran tensions, Times of Israel
An oil tanker operated by an Israeli company reportedly came under attack off the coast of Oman in the Arabian Sea, the British military said Friday, with the company later confirming the reports. The vessel is operated by Zodiac Maritime, a London-based company belonging to Israeli tycoon Eyal Ofer.

Mohammed Was Looking for His Little Brother When Israeli Soldiers Shot Him Dead at Close Range, Haaretz
The door of an Israeli army jeep that had entered the West Bank village of Nabi Saleh for no apparent reason suddenly opened and a soldier shot 17-year-old Mohammed Tamimi, while his cousin looked on in shock

Opinion and Analysis

Israel and Jordan’s Relationship Is Better Than It Looks, Foreign Policy
Aaron Magid writes, “Jordan’s ties with Israel have long been fraught. But despite the media’s focus on the dynamics between Abdullah and various Israeli leaders, there are few signs the Jordanian government will dramatically change its policies as Bennett succeeds Netanyahu. Rather, Amman will likely resume its delicate balancing act of critiquing Israeli policy toward Palestinians while pushing back against attempts to scrap the 1994 peace treaty entirely. Jordanian national interests offer no other alternative.”

American Jews Aren’t Soldiers in Israel’s Political Wars, Haaretz
Anshel Pfeffer writes, “Ben & Jerry’s is just the latest episode. Israel’s governments consistently try and pressgang Diaspora Jews into its war over the legitimacy of settlements, often against their own political beliefs, and it’s got to stop”