Today’s Top Stories
1. Paris diplomats are still pushing their Israeli-Palestinian peace initiative. Haaretz, picking up on French media, reports that President Francois Hollande wants to host the foreign ministers of 30-35 countries on or about December 21, and then follow-up soon after with a tripartite summit with Benjamin Netanyahu and Mahmoud Abbas.
Israel objects to the gathering of the foreign ministers, but maybe Hollande’s onto something with the summit:
Israel has not yet officially responded to the French invitation. Netanyahu has stressed several times that he would be willing to meet Abbas anywhere and anytime without preconditions, so the French hope that the prime minister will be receptive to the invitation. Abbas has already given his consent to the tripartite meeting.
2. Might Israel draw up a blacklist of companies that support BDS? And what difference does it make? Haaretz reports:
Strategic Affairs Minister Gilad Erdan has recommended to Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon that a committee be set up to maintain a blacklist of companies, organizations and, in some cases, individuals who call for boycotts of Israel or the West Bank settlements.
Under Erdan’s proposal those entities on the list would be subject to treasury sanctions, such as being banned from bidding on government tenders.
3. Israel isn’t confirming or denying Arab reports that it struck a Syrian air force base near Damascus last night. It’s the second alleged Israeli strike in Syria in the last two weeks.
4. Headline Confusion Reigns at the Times: The Times of London jumps the gun on contentious Knesset legislation.
Israel and the Palestinians
• Update: The image wasn’t declassified because it wasn’t based on reality. Call it a fabrication for illustrative purposes. Sheesh
The IDF put the world on notice that it knows about Hezbollah’s arms caches, rocket launchers, tunnels command posts and other positions in civilian areas of Southern Lebanon. The Times of Israel fills in more info about the army’s tweet.
This is a war crime. pic.twitter.com/CPE3XS1Xs0
— IDF (@IDFSpokesperson) December 6, 2016
• The Palestinians are calling for a UN Security Council meeting over the Knesset’s advancing of the “Regulation bill,” which would retroactively legalize a number of unauthorized settlement outposts. Jerusalem Post coverage.
• Reuters looks at Israeli Arabs serving in the IDF.
• Were claims of Israel’s ‘arson intifada’ overblown?
• The president of Britain’s Union of Jewish Students (UJS), Josh Seitler, took to the Huffington Post to issue a stark warning to National Union of Students and its leader, Malia Bouattia:
I want Jewish students to engage with the work that Malia has outlined to tackle antisemitism, as many have with Rob Young’s research, but until she apologises for her antisemitic comments – directly to Jewish students, not in an email to the wider student movement – it won’t surprise me if Jewish students vote to suspend UJS’ working relationship with NUS this Sunday.
• Tweet of the day from Kamel Amin Thaabet:
Everybody interested in #Pizzagate – if you want a true story about children being abused in underground tunnels you should check out Gaza
— Kamel Amin Thaabet (@K_AminThaabet) December 7, 2016
• Congress is mulling legislation that would let educational institutions to expand the definition of anti-Semitism in order to more effectively deal with the problem in schools and campuses. But the Anti-Semitism Awareness Act isn’t finding any love in the op-ed section of the Los Angeles Times. The bill got a big thumbs down in a staff editorial and an op-ed by Liz Jackson, a staff attorney for Palestine Legal in Oakland.
• Here’s what else I’m reading today . . .
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