News Roundup for May 2, 2022

May 2, 2022
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

Joaquin Castro Letter Critical of Israel Gets Republican Signatories, Jewish Insider
“An unlikely coalition of lawmakers, including progressive Democrats critical of Israel and typically pro-Israel Republicans, came together on Friday to charge that Israeli perpetrators of attacks on Christians and Christian sites in Jerusalem are “able to act with impunity.” The spokesperson said the letter had been written primarily in cooperation with Christians for Middle East Peace. It has also been promoted by J Street. “This is an important bipartisan initiative by Reps. Castro and Bilirakis calling on Secretary Blinken to work with the Israeli government to ensure accountability for Jewish extremists attacking Christian institutions in Jerusalem, and J Street is pleased to welcome it,” J Street’s director of government affairs, Debra Shushan, told JI.”

Top News and Analysis

Israel Arrests Palestinian Attackers Who Killed Guard, The Washington Post
The Israeli military on Saturday said it has arrested a pair of Palestinian assailants who allegedly shot and killed a security guard at the entrance of a Jewish settlement in the West Bank. The detention followed a manhunt that was launched shortly after the attack late Friday. Israeli soldiers, special forces, and border police took part in the detention and seizure of weapons from the two suspects, who it said were seized in the village of Qarawat Bani Hassan.

Israeli Security Guard Killed in Friday’s Shooting Attack Is Laid to Rest, Haaretz
The Israeli security guard who was killed in Friday’s terrorist attack near the West Bank settlement of Ariel is being laid to rest in his hometown of Beit Shemesh. Vyacheslav Golev, 23, was shot and killed at the entrance to Ariel while shielding his fiancée, Victoria Fligelman, who was the other guard at the post. On Saturday evening, Prime Minister Naftali Bennett expressed his condolences to the family and said that “there is no terrorist that we will not reach, and settle the score. Our war with terror is long, and together we will win.”


No Fireworks for Israel Independence Day Over Ptsd Concerns, AP
Although fireworks are typically a mainstay at parties across the country, this year many of the glittering yet noisy displays have been cancelled over concerns by some military veterans who say the cracking and banging dredges up the horrors of battle, especially for those with post-traumatic stress disorder.

President Herzog Speaks With PA Head Abbas, Middle East Leaders, The Jerusalem Post
President Isaac Herzog spoke on Sunday evening with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, wishing him a happy Eid al-Fitr, which marks the end of Ramadan. Herzog, who also spoke to Emirati crown prince Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan and Bahrain’s King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa, said during the talks that he hopes for peace and stability in the Middle East.

IDF to Close West Bank, Gaza Crossings for Memorial and Independence Days, The Times of Israel
The Israel Defense Forces on Sunday announced the closure of crossings to the West Bank and Gaza Strip for Memorial Day and Independence Day. The closure will begin Tuesday at 3 p.m., and last until midnight between Thursday and Friday, May 6. The IDF said the border crossings for Palestinians would reopen “subject to a situational assessment.”

Israel Demands Apology After Russia Says Hitler Had Jewish Roots, Reuters
Israel denounced Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on Monday for suggesting that Adolf Hitler had Jewish origins, accusing Lavrov of spreading anti-Semitism and belittling the Holocaust.

Opinion and Analysis

Unresolved Palestinian Issue Remains a Major Source of Mideast Tension, Responsible Statecraft
Shireen Hunter writes, “The dispute over Palestine and Palestinian rights remains a major source of tension and instability in the Middle East and a potential trigger for a region-wide war in which a number of parties would seek America’s military intervention. Washington’s continued complacency about the stalemate in Israel-Palestinian relations is dangerous. Even if Israel succeeds in establishing relations with more Arab and Muslim states, its security and that of the region will remain fragile unless it reaches a more acceptable modus vivendi with its Palestinian neighbors.”

During Ramadan, Palestinians Barred From Aqsa Turn to Smugglers, The New York Times
Raja Abdulrahim reports, “Only moonlight cut through the darkness early one recent morning by the time a smuggler led Husam Misk to a ladder propped against Israel’s concrete separation barrier. Mr. Misk, a 27-year-old dentist, said he climbed the ladder quickly but was still short of the top of the 26-foot wall. He grabbed the edge where the razor wire had been cut and hoisted himself up, pausing briefly to scan the area. No sign of any soldiers. He grabbed the rope dangling from the other side, braced his feet against the wall and lowered himself. About an hour later, Mr. Misk said, he walked into Al Aqsa Mosque compound in Jerusalem just in time to catch dawn prayers. Barred from legally crossing into Jerusalem from his home in the West Bank, he was one of many Palestinians who resorted to other means to visit one of the most sacred sites in Islam during the holy month of Ramadan.”