The new amendments will allow US taxpayer money to be spent in Israeli settlements, which are illegal under international law.
By Yumna Patel | Mondoweiss | Oct 28, 2020
“Extending US funding to the occupied West Bank, including illegal Israeli settlements, is a clear recognition of Israel´s annexation of Palestinian territory…this upgrades the Trump administration’s involvement in Israeli war crimes to active and willful participation.’ — Hanan Ashrawi, PLO Executive Committee member
In a move that has further legitimized Israel’s illegal settlement activity in the occupied Palestinian territory, the US and Israel have expanded a number of existing scientific cooperation agreements to now include Israeli institutions in the occupied West Bank and the Golan Heights.
The new agreement, signed on Wednesday between Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman, amended three existing scientific cooperation agreements between the two countries.
A recent presentation with Rev. Don Wagner who looks at Christian Zionism and how settler colonialism have influenced attitudes about Middle East policy in the United States.
By Rev. Don Wagner | Washington Report on Middle East Affairs | Sept 17, 2020
Christian Zionism’s political profile has been elevated to new heights during the Trump-Netanyahu alliance. But who is really setting the agenda? And at what cost?
Rev. Donald E. Wagner, is the author of “Zionism and the Quest for Justice in the Holy Land.” Until recently, historical and political accounts of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict have ignored or understated the influence of Christian Zionism in British and U.S. policy in the Middle East. Reverend Wagner examines Christian Zionism in relation to Britain’s 1917 Balfour Declaration during the British Empire and how “Manifest Destiny” and settler colonialism have influenced attitudes about Middle East policy in the United States.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is pushing for the declaration, according to a congressional aide with contacts inside the State Department.
By Nahal Toosi | Politico | Oct 21, 2020
“Criticizing government policy is not the same as attacking a specific group of people. For example, our critiques of U.S. government policy do not make us anti-American.“ — Eric Goldstein, Human Rights Watch
The Trump administration is considering declaring that several prominent international NGOs — including Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and Oxfam — are anti-Semitic and that governments should not support them, two people familiar with the issue said.
The proposed declaration could come from the State Department as soon as this week. If the declaration happens, it is likely to cause an uproar among civil society groups and might spur litigation. Critics of the possible move also worry it could lead other governments to further crack down on such groups. The groups named, meanwhile, deny any allegations that they are anti-Semitic.
Some worship resources to amplify the voice of Palestinian Christians and promote a just peace in Palestine and Israel.
By Friends of Sabeel North America (FOSNA) | Oct 2020
November 29th is the first Sunday in Advent, the Sunday after Thanksgiving, and International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People
Responding to the Cry for Hope from Palestinian Christians, we call on Christian leaders across the U.S. to commit their congregations to “Preach Palestine” on November 29th. November 29th is the first Sunday in Advent, the Sunday after Thanksgiving, and International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People. We have gathered resources for worship planners from a diversity of traditions and voices that lift up liberation from Turtle Island to Palestine. Can you commit your congregation to be a part of our goal of 100 churches to “Preach Palestine” on November 29?
Trumps one-sided approach to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict hurts Israel and makes any peace agreement harder to achieve.
By Dov Waxman | The Times of Israel | Oct 20, 2020
By favoring Israel so much, and by trying to punish and pressure the Palestinian leadership, Trump has only angered and alienated Palestinians.
Recent polls show that Israelis strongly prefer President Trump to his Democratic rival, former Vice President Joe Biden. The reason for this is obvious. Many Israelis, specifically Jewish Israelis, think that Trump has been the most ‘pro-Israel’ president in modern times. That’s why he’s so popular in Israel—there are even city squares named after him and an Israeli settlement on the Golan Heights that bears his name.
‘[Rachel Corrie’s] passion for social activism, and willingness to put her own life on the line for it, is what is inspiring to me…’ — Director Christine Bokhour
Two Saturdays ago, a theater company near me presented a reading of the play, “My Name Is Rachel Corrie,” with four young women speaking Rachel’s words on a simple stage 50 feet from commuter rails.
About 60 people were in the audience, and there was none of the political drama that accompanied the play’s New York premiere in 2006. Israel’s friends did not succeed in shutting down a progressive theater company‘s production of the show… When the show did get staged, no one handed out flyers outside the theater with pictures of Israeli girls killed in suicide bombings.
Conscientious objector Hallel Rabin was sentenced to 25 days behind bars for refusing to join the Israeli army over its policies toward the Palestinians.
By Orly Noy | +972 Magazine | Oct 21, 2020
‘I will not take part in a system which is based on inequality and fear. We live in a reality that raises us to be violent, and I refuse to take part in it or keep quiet about it.’ — Hallel Rabin, Israeli conscientious objector
Israeli conscientious objector Hallel Rabin began serving a 25-day sentence in military prison on Wednesday for refusing to join the Israeli army over its policies toward the Palestinians.
Rabin, 19, from Kibbutz Harduf in northern Israel, arrived at Tel Hashomer conscription base on Monday, where she was brought before the IDF’s conscientious objectors committee. Military conscription is mandatory for most Jewish Israelis.
This is Rabin’s third period of incarceration, while her appeal to the conscientious objectors committee is still pending. She was first imprisoned in August after appearing before the committee to appeal for an exemption. She was tried and sentenced to two different periods of incarceration, including during Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year.
British university students encouraged to unite in working for Palestine regardless of differences in political and religious affiliations.
By Middle East Monitor | Oct 19, 2020
‘Black Lives Matter has become a target for Israeli groups, because the movement supports Palestinian human rights’. — Nasim Ahmed, a political analyst at MEMO
The Association of Student Activism for Palestine held an online conference on Saturday, under the banner of “Justice for Palestine”. The intention, said the president of the association, Yahya AbuSeido, was to raise awareness about the Palestinian cause and promote campus and student activism at British universities.
AbuSeido urged students to unite in working for Palestine regardless of differences in political and religious affiliations. To this end, he suggested that new students should join their university Palestine societies. “This is a human rights issue,” he explained, “especially regarding Palestinian refugees and their legitimate right to return to their land.”
The Biden foreign policy plan differs significantly from Trump’s policies, but there is little promise there would be substantive changes in policies for Palestinians.
By Muqtedar Khan | The Conversation | Oct 19, 2020
…the United States’ global role is on the ballot in November.
When the Taliban recently voiced its hope that Donald Trump would win a second term because he would withdraw U.S. troops from Afghanistan, it was a reminder that the 2020 U.S. election has big implications for the Middle East – and, by consequence, for American national security.
Foreign policy barely registers on Americans’ election agenda this year in a race dominated by the coronavirus pandemic, economic woes and structural racism.
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