News Roundup for October 2, 2023

October 2, 2023
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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

J Street Opposes House CR that Slashes Funding for Humanitarian Aid, Security Assistance, Diplomacy, J Street
“The bill, which makes a blanket 30% cut to the FY23 budget, with limited exceptions, is an extreme piece of legislation that does deep disservice to the American people, US global leadership, global security, and peacebuilding in the Middle East.”

J Street Mourns the Passing of Senator Dianne Feinstein, J Street
“Senator Feinstein was an outspoken advocate for the safety, self-determination and fundamental freedoms of both Israelis and Palestinians. She was a strong opponent of deepening occupation and annexation in the West Bank, emphasizing the danger that it posed to Israel’s future and Palestinian rights.”

Top News and Analysis

What a Saudi-Israeli Deal Could Mean for the Palestinians, Foreign Affairs
Martin Indyk and Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein write, “If Netanyahu chooses normalization with Saudi Arabia — making the necessary concessions when it comes to Israeli activity in the West Bank — over his illicit deal with Smotrich, the whole region will benefit even if Israel’s extremists lose. But if Netanyahu chooses Smotrich over peace, then Israel will be the biggest loser.”

Hundreds Attend Funeral for Family of Five Killed in Israel’s Arab Community, Haaretz
Hundreds gathered in northern Israel on Friday to attend the funeral of five members of the Dlayka family who were gunned down two days earlier in the Bedouin town of Basmat Tab’un.


Israeli Soldiers Kill Palestinian Militant in the West Bank, Saying he Threw Explosives, AP
The Israeli military said that soldiers late Friday shot two Palestinians who hurled Molotov cocktails at an army post near the West Bank city of Ramallah, the seat of the Palestinian authority.

With 71% Spike, Crime in Arab Israeli Towns Threatens Local Elections, Al-Monitor
Arab Israeli candidates for the municipal elections, set for the end of October, are dropping out of the race out of fear for their lives and the lives of their family members.

IDF Said to Study Security Implications of Possible Saudi Normalization Deal, The Times of Israel
The study will look at the possible consequences of the deal, including the options for partnerships and cooperation, along with risks involved for Israel’s security. It will also look at the different kinds of nuclear programs that Saudi Arabia could set up.

JNF Funds Projects for At-risk Youth in Illegal West Bank Outposts, Haaretz
The fund transferred 4 million shekels over the past two years for at-risk youth training programs to organizations that promote living in strategically placed outposts intended to minimize Palestinian grazing grounds.

Opinion and Analysis

Building Bridges, Not Barriers, The Times of Israel
J Street U student leader Meirav Solomon writes, “If American Jewish communities deprive Jewish students the opportunity to explore their Jewish identity, learn about the conflict, organize against the occupation and meet other students who want to do the same, they risk losing the power of a generation committed to peace.”

All the Palestinians Got From Oslo Was KFC, Foreign Policy
Dalia Hatuqa notes, “It’s been 30 years since Oslo was inked, and some would say, much has changed, and yet somehow, nothing has. Even during the heydays of the peace years, settlements continued unabated, mushrooming across the West Bank. These days, half a million Israeli settlers live in the West Bank — their shiny red tile roofs a testament to them being out of place.”

Street Fights Over Prayer Offer Liberal Israelis a Chance to Define a Judaism They Can Believe In, JTA
Dr. Masua Sagiv argues, “For decades haredi and Religious Zionist rabbis and politicians in Israel have sought to dictate only one option for Judaism: an uncompromising religious Orthodoxy. This conception profoundly contradicts the values of Israeli liberals, and therefore many like Galon say they reject Judaism in any form. But in doing this, Israeli liberals also allow the most extreme elements within Israeli Judaism to deepen their grip and shape Judaism as they see fit.”