News Roundup for September 14, 2018

September 14, 2018

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J Street in the News

“Dont Give Up!” – A conversation with Jeremy Ben-Ami, PeaceCast

J Street President Jeremy Ben-Ami speaks to the Americans for Peace Now podcast, PeaceCast.

Morning Education, Politico

“Other groups weighing in on the policy shift included J Street, the liberal-leaning Jewish advocacy organization, which slammed the Education Department’s ‘spurious reversal’ on the issue. Its decision to reopen the Rutgers investigation, the group said in a statement, ‘is not about upholding civil rights or a serious effort to combat anti-Semitism, but about advancing a right-wing agenda that seeks to silence open discussion and debate of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.’”


Top News and Analysis

Is Trump pushing Abbas to dismantle the Palestinian Authority?, Al-Monitor

Ben Caspit writes, “The American administration’s offensive against the Palestinian Authority is at its height. Israel enthusiastically backs up the American political maneuvers. The strategy is to pin the Palestinians to the wall to extract the best possible deal for the Israeli side. The problem is that this strategy could boomerang. The Palestinians have already threatened to ‘return the keys’ many times. An Israeli source with expertise on the current goings-on told Al-Monitor this week on condition of anonymity: ‘They will return the keys on the day that the Israeli right will annex the West Bank.’ In other words — never. Nevertheless, in light of the rapidly deteriorating situation, the advanced age of Abbas and the T-junction toward which everyone is being pushed — it is recommended to address the Palestinian threats seriously, this time around.”

U.S. expects some Israeli criticism of parts of coming Mideast plan: envoy, Reuters

The Trump administration’s Middle East Envoy, Jason Greenblatt, speaks to Reuters about the administration’s plans.



Kushner Says Punishing Palestinians Won’t Hurt Chance for Peace Deal, The New York Times

Three days after the Trump administration evicted the Palestine Liberation Organization from its offices in Washington, Jared Kushner defended the latest in a string of punitive actions against the Palestinians and insisted that none of them had diminished the chances of a peace accord between Israel and the Palestinians.

Army finds another IED on Gaza border; police disarm boobytrapped balloon, Times of Israel

The Israeli military found and destroyed an improvised explosive device along the southern Gaza border on Friday, the second such case in two days.

Donald Trump offers Palestinians $5 billion in aid to negotiate with Israel, report reveals, Newsweek

President Donald Trump’s administration offered the Palestinians $5 billion in aid if they negotiate with Israel, according to a report by the Israeli business paper Globes.

Israel’s Ambassador Dermer Was ‘Warned That Netanyahu’s Spokesperson Posed Risk to Women’, Haaretz

Israel’s ambassador to the United States, Ron Dermer, was warned in 2016 by journalist Bret Stephens about allegedly inappropriate behavior towards 14 women by David Keyes, Prime Minister Benjamin Netnayahu’s spokesperson.

House Passes New $38 Billion Aid Package For Israel, Forward

The U.S. House of Representatives passed a measure that would codify into law the $38 billion defense aid package for Israel over 10 years that was negotiated in the final days of the Obama administration.


Opinion and Analysis

Punishing the PLO isn’t going to win Trump any ‘deal of the century’, Los Angeles Times

Dov Waxman writes, “The Trump administration’s decision to close the Palestine Liberation Organization’s office in Washington this week is the latest in a series of punitive actions it has taken against the Palestinians. The purpose is clear: to force the PLO and its ailing octogenarian leader, Mahmoud Abbas, to restart peace talks with Israel, and, ultimately, to accept the administration’s long-awaited peace plan. This strategy of coercion and collective punishment is bound to fail.”

25 Years after Oslo, Palestinians don’t trust Hamas — or the PA, Forward

Muhammad Shehada writes, “25 years into the saga of wars and repeated crises that followed Oslo, the current growing distrust of all political groups is significantly influenced by the failure of both parties to come up with any solutions, or at the very least, transcend their internal division and reconcile for the sake of their people. The repeated failures of the reconciliation process developed a collective sense of skepticism, and the belief that neither one of the Palestinian political groups have the people’s wellbeing and interests at the heart of their agenda.”