Weekend Reading

Nov 21: Weekend Reading

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Former US ambassador to Israel and Egypt Daniel Kurzter, on Sunday, wrote an Op-ed in the Washington Post, criticizing the now almost-certain American incentives package being offered to Israel in exchange for an additional 90-day settlement building moratorium. Kurtzer, who has previously written about settlements vis-à-vis US policy, claims that the deal is a game-changer. The ambassador rightly questions what will happen (when) settlers defy the building ban:

And what about enforcement? Will the United States demand its money back if it learns about construction during the freeze, even if that construction was not authorized by the Israeli government?

Kurtzer continues with his list of reasons the deal is ill-advised. He points out that the “deal will (more…)

Nov 13: Weekend Reading

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The New York Times ran an editorial on Friday calling out Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu for deciding that “his hard-line coalition is more important than working with President Obama to craft a peace deal,” and acting as if the new Republican House majority means he will enjoy American support “no matter what he does.” The Times editorial concluded by calling on Bibi to “stop playing games, reinstate the moratorium, get back to negotiations and engage seriously in a peace deal.”

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Young California Jew Matthew Taylor discussed the tensions between the aging American Jewish establishment and younger Jewish voices calling for just Israeli policies in an Haaretz Op-ed on Friday. Taylor was one of the hecklers attacked and thrown out of the  North American Jewish Federations General Assembly last week after interrupting Netanyahu’s speech with shouts of “The occupation delegitimizes Israel” and “The settlements betray Jewish values.” Lamenting how critics of Israeli policies are dismissed as “delegitimizers” sans any calm discussion on the merits of the criticism, Taylor recalled a Ghandi quote: “First they ignore you, then they (more…)

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