News Roundup for September 5, 2023

September 5, 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

Why Are Israel’s Ex-Shin Bet Chiefs Urging Biden Not to Host Netanyahu?, Al-Monitor
J Street Israel Director Nadav Tamir tells Al-Monitor that at normal times, a meeting between Netanyahu and Biden would be welcomed, but these are not normal times. “We all know that even if the American president slams Netanyahu at the meeting over the judicial overhaul, criticizes him on the sharp escalation of tensions at the West Bank [and] demands that the Israeli premier changes course, Netanyahu will present the meeting as a huge diplomatic achievement.”

US Jewish Communities Brace for Israel’s Constitutional Crisis: ‘We’ll Have to Pick a Side’, Haaretz
“Some congressional Democrats, mostly Jewish, publicly sided with the Israeli dissent movement since its inception. They were joined by organizations representing left-leaning Jewish Americans such as J Street, as well as the former senior officials of several prominent Jewish groups.”

There Are Things That Cannot Be ‘Explained’, The Times of Israel
J Street Israel Director Nadav Tamir writes, “Hasbara, better known in English as ‘Propaganda’, is a tool used by non-democratic states and cannot convince any person possessing a pair of eyes. What impacts states’ international status is reality, and not the attempts to beautify it. Israel’s image around the world actually improves thanks to the protesters out in the streets showcasing our state’s liberal side, but those are the very protesters that the Minister of Hasbara despises so much.”

Top News and Analysis

As Saudis Consider Deal With Israel, Palestinians Seek Sway in Talks, The New York Times
Three senior Palestinian envoys are set to arrive in Riyadh today for discussions about what demands Saudi Arabia could make on the Palestinians’ behalf in exchange for forming ties with Israel. That approach reverses the dynamic in 2020, when Bahrain, Morocco and the United Arab Emirates forged relations with Israel without consulting the Palestinians — let alone winning them lasting concessions.

Architect of Netanyahu’s Judicial Coup Pours Cold Water on Compromise, Haaretz
Amid coalition-opposition negotiations to halt the legislation, Justice Minister Levin criticized the proposal for neglecting control over judicial appointments. Opposition leaders are concerned this is a ploy by Netanyahu to delay the imminent High Court hearing.


Senior Biden Adviser Heading to Saudi Arabia to Talk Mega-deal with Palestinians, Axios
President Biden’s senior Middle East adviser is expected to travel to Saudi Arabia this week to meet with senior Palestinian officials and discuss a potential Palestinian component of a possible mega-deal between the US, Saudi Arabia and Israel.

US Officials Call for Yad Vashem’s ‘Independence’ Amid Reports Netanyahu Plans to Fire Memorial Director, JTA
The top US officials charged with combating antisemitism and Holocaust denial called on Israel to sustain the independence of Yad Vashem amid reports that its chair could be fired.

Netanyahu Calls to Expel Unauthorized Immigrants After Eritreans Clash, The New York Times
The Israeli prime minister’s remarks revived a debate about the fate of thousands of asylum seekers after hundreds of opposing Eritrean groups faced off in Tel Aviv this weekend.

Israeli Foreign Minister Opens Visit to Bahrain. It’s His First to Any of Israel’s New Arab Allies, AP
It was the first visit by Foreign Minister Eli Cohen to any of the four countries that normalized ties with Israel under the 2020 US-brokered Abraham Accords.

Opinion and Analysis

Spiraling Violence in Israel’s Arab Communities Claims Another Victim: Education, Haaretz
Shira Kadari-Ovadia, Sheren Falah Saab and Ran Shimoni note, “Every teacher, regardless of the community to which they belong, must always weigh their words on social and political issues. However, this concern is more tangible in the Arab community. Since its inception, the Education Ministry has kept a close eye over the Arab school system, their curricula, and their teachers by maintaining a supervisor from the Shin Bet security service even though martial law was removed in 1966.”

No Electricity, Jobs, or Freedom: 36 Hours in Gaza, +972
Samah Salaime writes, “It has been almost a month since I returned from Gaza. And although I was there for less than 48 hours, to give a workshop on women’s mental health, my thoughts and feelings keep returning to what I witnessed there. In this hot and unpleasant summer, in every attempt to return to normality, I couldn’t help but ask myself: how do the people in Gaza do it?”