News Roundup for May 9, 2023

May 9, 2023

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

Five Years after Iran Deal Abandonment, It’s Time to Recognize Maximum Pressure Failed, J Street
J Street’s statement on the fifth anniversary of former President Donald Trump’s unilateral abandonment of the Iran Deal.

Jewish Council for Public Affairs Names Amy Spitalnick, Who Sued Charlottesville Rally Organizers, as Its CEO, JTA
“Spitalnick was a communications official at J Street, the liberal Israel lobby, before transitioning into the rough-and-tumble of New York politics as the communications director for Mayor Bill DeBlasio and then in the state attorney general’s office. Last year, she was named director of another progressive Jewish group, Bend the Arc, but ultimately declined the position.”

Top News and Analysis

Top Islamic Jihad Commanders and Family Members Are Dead from Israeli Strikes in Gaza, NPR
Israel killed three senior commanders of the militant Islamic Jihad group in targeted airstrikes early Tuesday, the military said. Palestinian health officials said 13 people were killed in all, including the commanders, their wives, several of their children and others nearby. The attacks in densely populated residential areas set the stage for a new round of heavy fighting.

The Path to a New Iran Deal, Foreign Affairs
Ali Vaez and Vali Nasr write, “For Washington and its allies, a broad regional deal would have other advantages. It would both serve as crisis management, helping put a lid on further Iranian nuclear development, and establish permanent restrictions and transparency measures on Tehran’s nuclear program—averting a race among Iran’s neighbors to match Tehran’s nuclear fuel cycle technology. This deal would, in other words, be a far more durable and powerful agreement than the JCPOA. And if this deal did de-escalate tensions between Iran and its neighbors, it would allow the United States to focus more on big-ticket political concerns, such as climate change and great-power competition.”

EU Cancels Israel Event over Far-Right Minister’s Plan to Attend, BBC
The EU has cancelled its diplomatic event for Europe Day in Israel because of the planned participation of the far-right minister, Itamar Ben-Gvir. Organisers said they did not want “to offer a platform” to someone whose views contradicted its values. As the Israeli government’s designated representative, Mr Ben-Gvir had insisted he would give the customary speech at a ceremony on Tuesday.


Israel Gaza Strikes Kill Top Militants and 10 Civilians, BBC
At least 13 Palestinians, including three commanders of the militant group Islamic Jihad, have been killed in Israeli air strikes on the Gaza Strip. Palestinian health officials said eight women and children were among the dead. Another 20 people were injured. Israel said it had launched an operation targeting militants who posed an imminent threat to its citizens.

Biden Advisers Brief Israel’s Netanyahu on Saudi Talks, Axios
Senior Biden advisers on Monday briefed Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on talks between White House National Security adviser Jake Sullivan and Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, Israeli and U.S. officials tell Axios.

Israel’s Shin Bet Admits ‘Flaws’ in Mass Text Campaign Threatening Palestinians, Haaretz
Israel’s State Attorney’s Office admitted to the Supreme Court on behalf of the Shin Bet that there were flaws in the organization’s decision to send thousands of text messages to East Jerusalem Palestinians warning them not to participate in acts of violence in May 2021.

‘Tragic Mistake’: Top Biden Advisor Laments Trump Withdrawal from Iran Nuclear Pact, Substack
More than two years after the Biden administration tried unsuccessfully to revive the Iran nuclear deal, the top Biden White House foreign policy advisor called Trump’s decision to quit the deal five years ago a tragic mistake. But with efforts to revive the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) at a prolonged standstill, US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan suggested that near term, the United States was communicating warnings to Iran to stay within certain nuclear limits, while indicating that in the longer term, it seeks a diplomatic deal to put Iran’s nuclear program back in the box.

Opinion and Analysis

Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu’s Path of Destruction, The Jerusalem Post
Dan Meridor, former deputy prime minister, writes, “It’s not only relations with the US administration that are on the ropes. So, too, are relations between the Israeli government and American Jewry. On the domestic front, several crises threaten to snowball into an avalanche. Reservists from prized army and air force units have announced they will not volunteer if the reform goes ahead and Israel is turned into a dictatorship. All of this has eroded Israeli deterrence and challenged its security establishment.”