News Roundup for November 2, 2022

November 2, 2022
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J Street News Roundup

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

AIPAC Echoes Republicans’ Crime Messaging in Pennsylvania, The American Prospect
“Liberal pro-Israel group J Street seized on AIPAC’s support for Doyle, claiming that it is another indicator that AIPAC cares more about uncritical support for Israel than it does the views of American Jews. In a press release Monday afternoon, J Street National Political Director Laura Birnbaum said that “AIPAC’s actions make clear that they really mean it when they say that nothing matters to them other than unquestioning support for Israel—not the survival of American democracy, nor the core values and concerns of the majority of Jewish Americans.”

In A First, AIPAC Spends For GOP To Defeat Progressive House Candidate, HuffPost
“AIPAC had already raised cries of outrage on the left for its endorsement of more than 100 congressional Republicans who voted against certifying the 2020 presidential election. J Street, a more liberal pro-Israel group, reiterated criticism of that decision on Monday. “At a critical moment for American democracy, with election denial, antisemitism and far-right extremism on the rise, AIPAC continues to make clear that its top political priority is to target and defeat progressive Democrats,” Laura Birnbaum, J Street’s national political director, said in a statement.”

Top News and Analysis

Israel Vote Results Showing Soaring Power of Far Right, Netanyahu Comeback, The Washington Post
Israeli election results augur a slim parliamentary majority for former prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel’s most divisive leader, in Israel’s next government, but they are a stunning victory for Israel’s far right — a once fringe, aggressively anti-democratic, fundamentally racist movement that in a number of weeks may man the country’s most influential seats of power. At its helm are Bezalel Smotrich, a self-described “proud homophobe” who has announced plans to hobble Israel’s justice system, and Itamar Ben Gvir, who has advocated expelling “disloyal” citizens of Israel, both Jewish and Arab.

Palestinian Shot Dead After Driving Car Into Israeli Officer, AP
A Palestinian slammed his car into an Israeli army officer near a checkpoint in the occupied West Bank Wednesday, seriously injuring him, the Israeli military said. The officer opened fire on the man, the military said, and according to the Palestinians, he died soon after. The Palestinians identified the suspected attacker as Habas Abdel Hafeez Yousef Rayan, 54.


‘Discriminatory’: Democrats Urge Israel To End West Bank Travel Restrictions, The Guardian
Twenty members of Congress have asked the US secretary of state, Antony Blinken, to demand Israel end “discriminatory” travel restrictions against Palestinian Americans visiting their families in the occupied territories and US citizens critical of Israeli government policies.

Israel Markets Slip As Netanyahu Is Seen Returning As PM, Reuters
Israeli financial markets were marginally lower on Wednesday after partial results from Tuesday’s election showed former prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu poised to make a comeback.

Meretz Likely To Fall Under Electoral Threshold, The Jerusalem Post
The left-wing Meretz party likely did not pass the electoral threshold In Tuesday’s election and will remain outside of Israel’s 25th Knesset, according to data published by the Central Election Committee (CEC) after 84.7% of the votes were counted on Wednesday.

Knesset Could Be Without Any Druze Representatives for First Time in 3 Decades, The Times of Israel
For the first time in over 30 years, the new Knesset might not have any representation from the Druze community, if the current results hold. Meretz has Ali Salalha at number 4 on its list, but the party is currently just short of crossing the electoral threshold. In Yisrael Beytenu, Hamad Amar is number six on the list, but the party is currently set to win five seats.

Labor Party Cancels Post-election Event Amid Disappointing Exit Poll Results, Haaretz
Amid disappointing exit poll results, the Israeli Labor Party cancelled a post-election event in Tel Aviv that it had planned to hold with the close of voting in the Knesset election on Tuesday. As the polls closed, Israel’s three main television news channels projected that Merav Michaeli’s party would cross the 3.25 percent electoral threshold, but gave it just five or six Knesset seats.

Opinion and Analysis

Israel Votes. Palestine Is Under Siege., Vox
Jonathan Guyer reports, “The Lions’ Den, a new Palestinian resistance group, has emerged. Here’s what that says about the state of the Israel-Palestine conflict.”

The Latest Incarnation of the Right: Kahanist Bibi-ism, Haaretz
Aluf Benn argues, “The outlook of the world of Kahanist Bibi-ism can be summed up as racism toward non-Jews, and as presenting the political expression of the Arab public as support for terror – that is, as active hatred of the state, and as opposition to any limits placed on the power of the state by way of the courts, independent media or civil-society organizations oppose the policy of the government. All of these bodies are perceived in the eyes of Kahanist Bibi-ism as threats that must be quashed or intimidated until they surrender and are tamed.”

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