News Roundup for June 21, 2022

June 21, 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

Nancy Pelosi Rebukes AIPAC Ads Against Donna Edwards, The Intercept
“Liberal pro-Israel group J Street, which has supported Edwards in past elections, identified at least $1.5 million in upcoming ad spending over the next week — nearly $200,000 a day. They expect that number to increase dramatically in the run-up to the July 19 primary. If that happens, Edwards may face more outside spending from pro-Israel groups than any other candidate this cycle…In a statement from J Street, spokesperson Kevin Rachlin condemned AIPAC’s latest ad blitz and lauded Pelosi for pushing back. “It’s great to see Speaker Pelosi standing with Donna Edwards to fight back against disingenuous smears funded by a right-wing group.” he said. “AIPAC has been attacking Democrats who stand for human rights and the rule of law on the one hand, while endorsing insurrectionist Republicans on the other. They shouldn’t be in the business of telling Democrats who to vote for, and Glenn Ivey should be disavowing these misleading ads.””

Donna Edwards Gets Help From Pelosi to Swat at Attack Ad Tied to AIPAC, The Washington Post
“Edwards has retained strong support from J Street, which on Friday condemned the UDP ad and called on Ivey to do the same. It commended Edwards for her support for “peace, diplomacy and human rights for both Israelis and Palestinians.” “It’s appalling. These baseless attacks against an experienced Democrat like Donna Edwards are being funded by a hawkish, Republican-aligned group which is actively fundraising for those who threaten our democracy,” Kevin Rachlin, vice president of public affairs for J Street, said in a statement, referring to the fact that AIPAC is also backing Republicans who objected to 2020 election results. “As Speaker Pelosi made clear, these attacks against Donna are baseless. Glenn Ivey must show his commitment to American democracy by calling for United Democracy Project to pull its misleading ads from this race.””

Top News and Analysis

Israel’s Government Collapses, Setting Up 5th Election in 3 Years, The New York Times
Israel’s governing coalition will dissolve Parliament before the end of the month, bringing down the government and sending the country to a fifth election in three years, the prime minister said on Monday. The decision plunged Israel back into paralysis and threw a political lifeline to Benjamin Netanyahu, the right-wing prime minister who left office just one year ago upon the formation of the current government. Mr. Netanyahu is currently standing trial on corruption charges but has refused to leave politics, and his Likud party is leading in the polls.

Gaza Rocket Into Israel Breaks 2-Month Lull, Israel Responds, NPR
Palestinian militants fired a rocket into southern Israel early Saturday, shattering a two-month lull in violence at the Gaza-Israel border in contrast to soaring tensions in the occupied West Bank. The Israeli military said aerial defense systems intercepted the projectile, which activated warning sirens in the southern coastal city of Ashkelon. There were no reports of casualties.


Israeli Troops Kill 3 Palestinians in West Bank Gunbattle, AP
Israeli forces shot dead three Palestinians and wounded at least eight others early Friday during a military operation in the occupied West Bank town of Jenin, according to the Palestinian Health Ministry. The military said its forces came under attack and exchanged fire with militants.

Israel To Allow LGBT Palestinians Granted Temporary Asylum to Work, The Times of Israel
LGBT Palestinians fleeing persecution in the West Bank will be allowed to work in the country, ending years being allowed to reside in Israel but little else, the Israeli government told the High Court on Sunday night. The restrictions placed LGBT Palestinians in a highly precarious situation, driving many to work illegally under exploitative conditions or to prostitution.

Israel Confirms Regional Military Project, Showing Its Growing Role, The New York Times
The Israeli government confirmed on Monday that it is part of a regional military partnership to combat threats from Iran, in the latest example of Israel’s growing engagement with some Arab governments and the recalibration of Middle Eastern alliances.

Palestinian Shot Dead by Army While Trying to Cross Into Israel, Haaretz
A 53-year-old Palestinian man was shot dead by Israeli forces at the West Bank separation barrier Sunday, the Palestinian Health Ministry said. According to the Israeli military, the man was shot after he damaged the barrier near Qalqilyah in an attempt to cross into Israel.

Israel Is Hoping Its Gas Will Finally Make It Part of the Middle East, The Washington Post
With the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Israel’s burgeoning natural gas sector has set its sights on energy-desperate Europe, but it’s also using its newly acquired energy wealth to achieve its long-sought goal of integrating itself into the region with its once-hostile Arab neighbors.

Opinion and Analysis

Shireen Abu Akleh’s Brother Calls on the U.S. To Investigate His Sister’s Killing, NPR
“The Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh was wearing a blue vest with the word press on it when she was shot and killed while covering an Israeli military raid in the West Bank. That was more than a month ago. And among the many people around the world pushing for accountability for her death is her brother. NPR’s Daniel Estrin has been to the family’s home and is here to tell [NPR] about his conversations as well as the latest developments in this case.”

The Killing of Shireen Abu Akleh: Tracing a Bullet to an Israeli Convoy, The New York Times
A New York Times investigation found that the bullet that killed a Palestinian-American journalist was fired from the approximate position of an Israeli military vehicle.