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Blog: December 2011 Archives

New APN op-ed on HuffPo: The Cost of Appeasing Settler Terrorism

The Netanyahu government isn't serious about stopping settler violence.

This is the only possible conclusion. While Netanyahu and his cohorts denounce Jewish extremists and promise to get tough, actions speak louder than words. And their action this week on outposts sent an unmistakable message to the settlers: not only won't you pay a price for terrorism, but you'll be rewarded.

I was sent to preserve life!


"Now, do not be grieved or angry..." With these words, Joseph forgives his brothers. In this week's portion, we learn a powerful lesson about the power we have to forgive and move forward- seeking peace and mutual survival over seeking revenge and becoming mired in past wrongs.

Today's Year End Top Ten: PR Failures!


Inspired by Gershom Gorenberg's "contest" between candidates for worst political PR, we have for you a round-up of our top ten PR failures!

Top 10 PR flubs (in addition to Gershom's)

APN's Top 10 Wackiest Congressional Actions on the Middle East of 2011

top_ten186x140.jpgAnyone who reads the Round-Up knows that Congress gets up to a lot of wacky stuff when it comes to the Middle East.  Below is a subjective list of the top ten outstanding examples of this.  Enjoy!

They are not "anarchists" by Yariv Oppenheimer

The State of the Anarchists 

By Yariv Oppenheimer

Maariv, 28 December, 2011

(Tanslation courtesy of Israel News Today)

In the past weeks, when the "price tag" riots peaked, right wing MKs hurried to disassociate themselves from the extremist minority and to protest against the generalizations aimed at the settler public, most of which is law-abiding. In his public response to the incidents in the Ephraim Brigade, the prime minister called the rioters "anarchists," an extremist handful that does not represent the general population in the territories.

Today's Top Ten: Ways you help APN Build Peace


Today's top ten!

Have you ever wondered what Americans for Peace Now does? Today's top ten list explains what you support when you donate to APN. Every dollar you donate sustains essential work building peace for Israel and its neighbors.

Top ten quotes for 2011

This week, we are closing out the year with (what else?) a few top ten lists. Today's offering: our top ten best quotes for 2011 - unranked, and completely subjective. We believe that these quotes underline the urgency of moving forward and reaching out to create peace in Israel and the occupied territories.

Listening to Joseph

peace_parsha_logo186x140.jpg Is it possible to hear those we hate?

At the beginning of this week's Torah portion Vayeshev (which means "he dwelt"), the patriarch Jacob is living in Canaan with his children. Jacob has many children, but Joseph, the elder son of his beloved wife Rachel, is favored.

ACTION ALERT: Don't play politics with Israel!

Presidential_Campaign_Collage2_186x140.jpgThe issue of Israel has a legitimate place in the debate and discourse of a US election. As part of a serious discussion, we expect to see how each candidate would advance Israel-Palestinian peace. In order to promote such a debate, APN has launched its "Elections 2012: Responsibility over Rhetoric" campaign.

The Belated Awakening to Settler Extremism

Graffiti Collage2-thumb-186x140.jpg

Recent attacks on the IDF have led to an abrupt awakening in Israel and abroad. Suddenly people are realizing the danger posed to Israel by a generation of settlers who respect neither Israeli law, nor Israel's army, nor the Israeli state, and who are prepared to use violence against not only Palestinians (which has long been the case) but also against fellow Jews.

Americans for Peace Now today sent the following letter to the Republican presidential candidates, to President Obama, to the Democratic National Committee and the Republican National Committee:

Educating Mr. Gingrich


GOP presidential contender Newt Gingrich said in an interview with the Jewish Channel last week that the Palestinians were an "invented" people. Later, at a GOP presidential debate, he refused to retract, and said, "It's fundamentally-- time for somebody to have the guts to stand up and say: Enough lying about the Middle East."

Why Peace is Possible - new piece in J. Weekly

Why peace is possible: the Hiriya garbage dump theory

Thursday, December 8, 2011 | by Ori Nir

As an Israel Defense Forces soldier in the late 1970s and early '80s, my favorite spot to hitchhike back to my home in Jerusalem was the Ganot junction near Ben Gurion Airport. I spent dozens if not hundreds of hours standing there, waiting for a ride, gazing at the jets landing and taking off.

Unfortunately, the tantalizing view of the jets' bellies came with a nauseating odor of garbage. Why garbage? Because on the other side of the junction was Hiriya, Tel Aviv's main garbage dump, literally a mountain of garbage.
Partisans of the hardline "Israel, right or wrong" crowd are overflowing with righteous indignation over comments made in recent days by three Obama Administration officials (see here, here, and here, for example).  They are outraged over comments by Secretary of State Clinton - a staunch defender of Israel and the U.S.-Israel relationship - in which she expressed concern about the degenerating status of women in Israel and the anti-democratic trend in the Israeli Knesset.  They are dismayed by a speech delivered by Secretary of Defense Panetta - a longtime central player at the CIA and the Pentagon in U.S.-Israel strategic cooperation - in which he urged Israel to "reach out and mend fences" with some countries in the region, and called on both sides to "get to the damn table."  And they are apoplectic over remarks by U.S. Ambassador to Belgium Howard Gutman - an American Jew whose father spent World War II in Europe hiding from the Nazis - suggesting that there is a linkage between Israeli policies and the growth of anti-Semitism.

How dare these officials say such things about Israel?  

Maybe the answer is this simple: they dare because they care.  And because they know that caring about Israel means speaking some hard truths - not to hurt Israel but to save it.

Amos_Oz_Interview186x140.jpg Israeli author Amos Oz talks about how American Jews who support the peace movement are loyal and devoted to Israel - "no less, and perhaps more than their militant bretheren." He says "there is more than one way to be pro-israel, there is more than one way to support Israel, there is more than one way to love Israel."