News Roundup for June 10, 2024

June 10, 2024
Receive the roundup in your inbox every morning!

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

J Street Welcomes Rescue of Four Hostages in Gaza, J Street
“The release of the hostages remains a central goal for J Street. Even as we welcome the news of a successful rescue, we reiterate that the fastest and surest way to bring the remaining hostages home is through an agreement for a ceasefire that includes a stop to the fighting, the return of all hostages and a surge of humanitarian aid.”

Top News and Analysis

Inside Israel’s Hostage Rescue: Secret Plans and a Deadly ‘Wall of Fire’, The Washington Post
Argamani and three other Israeli hostages would be extracted from central Gaza and reunited with family in a complex daylight operation involving thousands of troops, technicians and analysts. It was planned for weeks and executed smoothly, Israeli officials said, until the tight commando raid turned into a firefight with militants. The Israeli military responded with a massive aerial assault on the crowded streets of Nuseirat. The bombs kept falling and the streets echoed with screams, Abu Asi said. It was like “doomsday.”

‘Failure of the Negotiations’: Israel’s Hostage Rescue Leads to One of the Bloodiest Days in the War, NBC News
In Israel, the news of four hostages rescued from Gaza was met with cheering crowds and tearful scenes of reuniting families. Officials hailed the operation as miraculous and heroic, and offered a rare win for Israel’s embattled Prime Minister. But it came at the expense of hundreds of Palestinians, who suffered one of the bloodiest days in Gaza. Video filmed by an NBC News crew on the ground showed streets scattered with charred bodies, survivors gathering body parts into sacks, rescuers carrying mangled and blood-soaked children into chaotic hospitals overwhelmed with the injured.

‘Netanyahu’s Preventing Us From Achieving Real Victory’: Benny Gantz Quits Government, Haaretz
In a press conference, Gantz said that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is “preventing us from achieving real victory,” adding that the party will leave the government “with a heavy heart, yet wholeheartedly.” Gantz then called on Netanyahu to set a date for elections, adding, “do not let our nation tear apart.” The former defense minister also asked for the hostages’ families forgiveness, saying “We failed, the responsibility is also mine.”

What Does Israel’s Rescue of 4 Captives, and the Killing of 274 Palestinians, Mean for Truce Talks?, AP
Tia Goldenberg reports, “Both sides face renewed pressure to make a deal: The complex rescue is unlikely to be replicated on a scale needed to bring back scores of remaining hostages, and it was a powerful reminder for Israelis that there are still surviving captives held in harsh conditions. Hamas now has four fewer bargaining chips. But they could also dig in, as they repeatedly have over months of indirect negotiations mediated by the United States, Qatar and Egypt. Hamas is still insisting on an end to the war as part of any agreement, while Israel says it is still committed to destroying the militant group.”

Biden Administration Has Discussed Potentially Negotiating Unilateral Deal with Hamas to Free US Hostages, NBC News
Such negotiations would not include Israel and would be conducted through Qatari interlocutors, as current talks have been, said the officials, all of whom have been briefed on the discussions. The officials did not know what the United States might give Hamas in exchange for the release of American hostages. But, the officials said, Hamas could have an incentive to cut a unilateral deal with Washington because doing so would likely further strain relations between the U.S. and Israel and put additional domestic political pressure on Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.


Biden’s National Security Adviser Calls for Ceasefire Deal After Israeli Hostage Rescue Mission, CNN
“The best way to get all of the hostages home and to protect Palestinian civilians is to end this war. And the best way to end this war is for Hamas to say ‘yes’ to the deal President Biden announced and that Israel has accepted, which lays out a roadmap to an enduring ceasefire and the return of all hostages,” Sullivan told CNN’s Dana Bash on “State of the Union.”

Watch as Rescued Israeli Hostages Are Reunited With Families [Video], BBC
The IDF said the four hostages were in good medical condition and had been transferred to the ‘Sheba’ Tel-HaShomer Medical Center, where they were pictured embracing family members.

IDF’s Gaza Division Head Announces His Resignation: ‘I Failed in My Life’s Mission’, The Times of Israel
The commander of the IDF’s Gaza Division, Brig. Gen. Avi Rosenfeld, announces that he is resigning from the military over his involvement in the failures that led to Hamas’s October 7 terror onslaught. In a letter to the head of the Southern Command and IDF chief of staff, Rosenfeld writes that “on October 7, I failed in my life’s mission to protect the [Gaza border communities].”

Bipartisanship or Republican Meddling? AIPAC is Biggest Source of GOP Donations in Dem Primaries, Politico
AIPAC’s primary focus has been leveraging its weight in competitive Democratic primaries, spending millions to boost moderates over progressives who have been critical of Israel. That has made AIPAC the biggest source of Republican money flowing into competitive Democratic primaries this year, according to a POLITICO analysis of campaign finance data — and drawn outrage from the left over what it sees as GOP meddling in Democratic contests.

Blinken Arrives in Egypt as US Pushes for Gaza Ceasefire, Reuters
In his eighth visit to the region since Hamas militants attacked Israel on Oct. 7, triggering the bloodiest episode in the decades-long Israeli-Palestinian conflict, the top U.S. diplomat is also set to travel to Jordan and Qatar this week. The visit comes after U.S. President Joe Biden on May 31 outlined a three-phase ceasefire proposal from Israel.

Explosive Drones, Rocket Barrage From Lebanon Spark Fires in Golan Heights, The Times of Israel
Waves of rocket and drone attacks on northern Israel set off sirens repeatedly throughout Sunday and sparked fires in the Golan Heights, as Israel and Hezbollah once again traded fire throughout the day while international allies called for a de-escalation.

A Small American Bomb Killing Palestinians by the Dozen in Gaza, The New York Times
The GBU-39, or small-diameter bomb, was used in an attack at a former UN school on Thursday and in a May 26 strike in Rafah. In both cases, the Israeli military defended its actions, saying the strikes were aimed at militants using civilians as human shields. The Gaza health authorities said that civilians had also been killed, and there were videos and pictures of women and children among the dead.

Momentum Grows Behind Democratic Boycott of Netanyahu Speech, The Hill
With the invitation now official, and the speech set for July 24, more and more progressive Democrats are emerging with a formal declaration of their own: We won’t be there.

UN Food Agency Pauses Its Aid Work at US Pier in Gaza Over Security Concerns, in Latest Setback, AP
The director of the U.N. World Food Program said Sunday the program has “paused” its distribution of humanitarian aid from an American-built pier off Gaza, saying she was “concerned about the safety of our people” after what had been one of the deadliest days of the war there.

What to Know About the Hostages Still in Gaza, The New York Times
Roughly 120 captives remain in Gaza. The Israeli military has confirmed that at least 30 of them have died. Dozens of proposed rescue missions have not gone forward for fear the hostages or soldiers would lose their lives in the process, according to Israeli defense officials.

Opinion and Analysis

Four Israeli Hostages Are Finally Free. Now for Peace Talks to Break Through, The Washington Post
The Washington Post Editorial Board writes, “The impact of Saturday’s hostage rescue on prospects for a deal is unclear. It might harden both sides’ positions, by making Mr. Netanyahu confident of military victory and Hamas determined to avenge an embarrassing defeat. Secretary of State Antony Blinken returns to the Middle East this week for more long-shot negotiation. Those who genuinely seek a better day for the Palestinians — and Israelis — will be wishing him success.”

Why Are American Jewish Institutions Ignoring the Hostage Families?, The Forward
Rabbi Jill Jacobs shares, “The families of hostages understand the immediate danger to their loved ones. And they know that the only way to save their relatives’ lives is a deal that also ends the war. They also know that while Hamas has been reluctant to end hostilities, their own government has consistently refused to make a deal. They are begging American Jewish organizations to join them in demanding that Netanyahu accept an agreement and end the war.”

Israel’s Allies Worry Gantz’s Departure Will Strengthen Extremists in the Government, Haaretz
Amir Tiibon reports, “The concern over Smotrich and Ben-Gvir’s influence in a cabinet without Gantz and Eisenkot applies in a number of areas. The first and most urgent in the view of many countries is the possibility of reaching a deal to free hostages that would include a lengthy cease-fire in Gaza.”

A Careful Dance: How Hezbollah and Israel Have Kept the Lid on a Wider War, The New York Times
Neil MacFarquhar, Hwaida Saad and Euan Ward report, “Whenever the fighting escalates, both Hezbollah and Israel seem to calibrate their tit-for-tat attacks so that no strike starts a larger conflict. While concerns about a wider war remain, both sides appear hamstrung in different ways that force restraint.”