October 2009 Archives
2. House Foreign Affairs Committee Marks Up Major Iran Sanctions Legislation...
3. ...While Senate Banking Committee Marks Up Omnibus Iran Sanctions Bill
4. APN on H. Res. 867 (the Goldstone Resolution)
5. Judge Goldstone on H. Res. 867
6. APN Interns' Notes from the House IRPSA Mark-Up
7. Key quotes from the Dodd Iran Sanctions Hearing
In this video, my colleague Lara Friedman discusses the challenges and opportunities President Barack Obama faces in pursuing peace for Israel.
Israelis, who today are marking the 14th anniversary of Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin's assassination, will always remember where they were when Rabin was murdered by an Israeli religious-nationalist Jew, determined to undermine the peace efforts of Rabin's government.
If you listen to the Americans, well, you don't learn much, since they aren't leaking anything about their talks with Netanyahu, Barak, Molcho, and Herzog. So all we know for sure is that it is still the US policy to oppose all settlement activity and that the US expect Israel to stop the settlements. So far so good.
By Christopher Beam
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - October 27, 2009 / CONTACT: Ori Nir - (202) 408-9898; firstname.lastname@example.org
Washington, D.C.-- Americans for Peace Now (APN) today congratulated J Street, the political arm of America's pro-Israel peace movement, for its successful First National Conference.
"J Street succeeded to attract and mobilize a large number of peace activists, creating a historic moment for our movement."
APN congratulated J Street this week for its successful First National Conference.
APN was a participating organization for the conference and presented a session: "West Bank Settlements: Obstacles on the Road to Peace - A View From the Ground and From the Diplomatic Arena"
The attendance was standing-room-only to hear the panel which included Hagit Ofran, Peace Now Settlement Watch Director (pictured).
Whose Israel is It?
By Jo-Ann Mort - October 25, 2009,
I have spent the day in Washington, first at the Americans for Peace Now board meeting, where I am an officer, and later at the J Street conference, where I am a participant. I go to sleep tonight with this sentiment dancing on my brain: the promise of Israel needs to be embraced and supported, promoted and defended--fought for. That is not the case presently in much of American political discourse.
Monday's Middle East Peace Report took a look at recent polls of the Palestinian public.
APN's Ori Nir relates the increasing brutalization of Israeli society to incidents he witnessed while covering the West Bank as a reporter twenty years ago.
- Israeli and Palestinian areas
- Settlements and outposts
- Constructed and planned barrier route
The Israeli-Palestinian conflict has innumerable costs. One of them is the psychological stress on Israeli society, which is gradually becoming more violent and more brutal.
Yariv Oppenheimer, Shalom Achshav (Peace Now, Israel) General Director (right)
Hagit Ofran, Shalom Achshav Settlement Watch Director (top left)
Akiva Eldar, Ha'aretz Chief Political Columnist (bottom left)
And what does Ben-David attack Rebecca for? Being of Arab descent and working for organizations that explicitly, publicly support Israeli-Palestinian peace and the two-state solution. Outrageous. Intolerable. I spent a good part of the day fuming. And then I read Spencer Ackerman's response, and I felt a lot better. I recommend it to all.
Israel's deputy prime minister, Dan Meridor, spoke over the weekend in Washington about what he sees as the three chief foreign policy challenges that Israel faces today: Iran, the Israeli-Palestinian peace process and the Goldstone report.
Negotiations Now; Abbas' Popularity Plunges; Hamas Pushes Its Advantage; Stop with the Settlements Already; Israel-Turkey Tensions; Bringing the Holocaust to Gaza
Ha'aretz: "Hilltop Double-talk"
While Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu tries to battle the Goldstone report in the name of Israel's right to self-defense, and his envoys and the U.S. administration discuss terms for renewing negotiations with the Palestinians, his government is developing infrastructure in dozens of West Bank settlements.
The second day of discussions at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy's annual conference ended with winds of war.
2. House passes Iran Sanctions Enabling Act
3. IPRSA Set to Move Forward (in committee and on the floor)
4. APN on IRPSA Developments
5. Partisan Point-Scoring over IRPSA Continues
6. Ros-Lehtinen Attacks Administration Over Goldstone Report
7. Four House Republicans Launch Anti-Muslim Witch-Hunt
By Akiva Eldar and Chaim Levinson
Human rights activists monitoring the West Bank report that despite commitments Israel made to President Barack Obama's administration last month, widespread building activity commenced three weeks ago in at least 12 settlements.
Peace Now Secretary-General Yariv Oppenheimer said, "The outpost industry will stop at nothing in order to continue thriving."
Guard at ancient West Bank synagogue site builds illegal shed from which he carries out carpentry work defense officials believe is used for construction of caravans, outposts by settlers. Civil Administration says execution of demolition order pending authorization of political echelon
By Efrat Weiss
invites you to a presentation and discussion with:
Author and Ha'aretz journalist
A New Intifada?; A New Low for Israel's Regional Standing; A Nuclear Umbrella?; Extending the Olive Branch; Labor Pains; Time for Action on Iran
Americans for Peace Now and the
Foundation for Middle East Peace
invite you to a presentation and discussion with:
Author and Ha'aretz journalist
Director, Settlement Watch
Peace Now (Shalom Achshav)
The United States, Israel, Settlements and Peace
October 28, 2009, 12-2:00pm
Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
Second Floor, Root Room
1779 Massachusetts Ave. NW
Akiva Eldar is the co-author of the widely lauded Lords of the Land. Mr. Eldar has been with the Israeli daily Ha'aretz for over thirty years, as a diplomatic correspondent, U.S. bureau chief, Washington DC correspondent and currently serves as the chief political columnist and editorial writer.
Hagit Ofran is the director of the Settlement Watch project for the Israeli Peace Now organization. Ms. Ofran is widely recognized as the foremost Israeli expert on West Bank and East Jerusalem settlements. Ms. Ofran is responsible for monitoring and analyzing construction, planning and other settlement related developments in the occupied territories.
The highly acclaimed book, Lords of the Land by Akiva Eldar and Idith Zertal, will be sold at the event
A light lunch will be served.
Please RSVP to: email@example.com
Co Authors Daniel Seidemann is a Jerusalem attorney and founder of Ir Amim, an Israeli nongovernmental agency, and Lara Friedman is director of policy and government relations for Americans for Peace Now.
Jerusalem has once again emerged in recent days as the focal point of dangerous tensions that threaten to erupt into violence or even a third intifada. Much of the media analysis has overlooked the fact that this situation did not arise out of a vacuum, but is the latest manifestation of tensions that have been steadily growing for months.
The first pro-Israel group to praise Obama was Americans for Peace Now."President Obama deserves recognition and praise for making Middle East peace a top U.S. foreign policy priority from his first moments in the Oval Office," said Ori Nir, its spokesman
By Ron Kampeas · October 9, 2009
(JTA) -- The chairman of the Nobel Peace Prize committee cited President Obama's outreach to the Muslim world and his push for Israeli-Arab peace in explaining the shock decision.
2. Administration Officials Tell Senate Banking Committee: Not So Fast with IRPSA
3. Israel and Iran in the Defense Authorization Bill
4. More Partisan Point Scoring over IRPSA?
Picture: Chairman of the Nobel Peace Prize committee Thorbjorn Jagland holds a picture of President Obama.
America woke up today to a pleasant surprise: President Barack Obama is the winner of the Nobel Peace Prize.
I rushed the following quote to the news wires: "President Obama deserves recognition and praise for making Middle East peace a top U.S. foreign policy priority from his first moments in the Oval Office. We hope that winning the prestigious prize will further energize the President and his aides to push for peace between Israel and her neighbors."
JTA, the Jewish news service, noted that "The first pro-Israel group to praise Obama was Americans for Peace Now."
And what Obama officials were saying about the sanctions -- including alluding to concerns that they would harm civilians rather than the government and could thus be counterproductive, and emphasizing the need for multilateral, rather than unilateral, action -- would seem to indicate that they share many of our concerns about this particular sanctions initiative.
Key excerpts from the hearing are copied here:
Hagit Ofran is the director the Settlement Watch project of the Israeli Peace Now movement (Shalom Achshav). Read more at: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/hagit-ofran.
Last week, an incident that could have set the entire Middle East on fire was prevented. Netanyahu's secret plan to visit a disputed tunnel in the East Jerusalem Palestinian neighborhood of Silwan, at the site known as Ir David (the City of David), was canceled, probably with some international intervention. Am I exaggerating the danger? No.
by Tovah Lazaroff , THE JERUSALEM POST
Peace Now charged Monday that settlers had accelerated the pace of construction and started work on more than 800 new homes in the last three months to thwart US demands that they stop building.
Dan Izenberg , THE JERUSALEM POST
A government decision to oppose Peace Now's request for an interim injunction against the illegal construction of 15 houses in the West Bank settlement of Kiryat Netafim, about 30 km. east of Tel Aviv, proved mistaken when building continued despite stop-work orders issued by the civil administration.
by Mohammed Mar'I, Arab News, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
Oct. 6--RAMALLAH -- The anti-settlement Israeli watchdog Peace Now on Monday said 800 housing units have been built in West Bank settlements in the last three months. The movement said in a press statement, after its activists toured a construction site in the West Bank settlement Nokdim not far from Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman's home,...
Abbas Faces Domestic Fire for Pulling Punch; Winds of Intifada Blow in Jerusalem; In Reversal, High Court Freezes Settlement Construction; What Freeze?; Will Israel and Hamas Deal on Shalit?; Obama's Iran Strategy Yields Tentative Results
CONTACT: Ori Nir (202) 408-9898
Washington, D.C - Americans for Peace Now (APN) today expressed alarm at the spiraling violence in Jerusalem and urged the Obama administration to take immediate action to help stop the deterioration.
"Recent history teaches us that clashes in Jerusalem have a tendency to ripple throughout the region..."
Special analysis from Daniel Seidemann (Ir Amim) and Lara Friedman (Americans for Peace Now)
The recent violence on the Temple Mount/Haram al Sharif is only the latest indication of the rising level of tension in Jerusalem - tension that has been steadily increasing for months. The potential for a highly disruptive, violent conflagration in Jerusalem is more likely now than at any point since the visit of then-opposition leader Ariel Sharon to the Temple Mount in September 2000, triggering the worst wave of Israeli-Palestinian violence since 1967. Indeed, as the world is coming to recognize, the current mix of destabilizing factors at play is hauntingly familiar - resembling the period that led to the outbreak of the second Intifada.
2. Playing Partisan Politics with Iran in the House of Representatives
3. Non-Exhaustive List of Iran Sanctions Bills that Died in Previous Congresses
4. Dodd Lays Out Plans for Omnibus Iran Sanctions Bill
5. House Colloquy on Israel (and why settlements are not the issue) and Iran (and why it is just like Nazi Germany)
Born and raised in Jerusalem, Ori Nir is the spokesman for Americans for Peace Now. Previously, Ori worked for Haaretz Daily, Israel's leading newspaper, where he covered Palestinian affairs and Israel's Arab minority. He also served as Washington bureau chief for Ha'aretz and the Forward, America's largest and most influential independent national Jewish weekly newspaper.
As I see it, President Obama's commitment to serious and meaningful engagement with Iran - including potential incentives for nuclear transparency - offers Teheran an opportunity that it did not have under the Bush administration for de-escalating its standoff with the international community.
Obama's statement regarding a constructive beginning of the talks with Iran should further prompt American friends of Israel to support the President's responsible strategy.
That's my view. I welcome your reactions.