Israel to Penalize Amnesty International; U.S. to Boost Aid Package to Israel

What We’re Reading

Israeli Politics

In First, Israel Will Penalize Amnesty International for Anti-settlements Campaign,

Israel plans to punish Amnesty International for its recent campaign, which encourages people to lobby companies and governments to boycott settlement products, by denying tax benefits to Israelis who donate to the human rights organization. It is the first time the [Israeli] government will apply the so-called anti-boycott law, which penalizes organizations and individuals calling for a boycott of Israel or the settlements. The controversial law was passed in 2011.

War crimes and open wounds: The physician who took on Israeli segregation,

On the occasion of her 80th birthday, Ruchama Marton, the founder of Physicians for Human Rights-Israel, talks about the atrocities she witnessed as a soldier, the enduring power of feminism, and why only outside help has a chance of ending Israel’s military rule over the Palestinians.

Palestinian Politics

Hamas says ready to reconcile with Fatah with no conditions,

Hamas says it is ready to talk reconciliation with the rival government of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas without preconditions. Hamas had previously demanded that Abbas halt a series of measures taken against the Islamic militant group before sitting down to discuss a reconciliation deal.

Palestinian Authority Suspends Funds to Prisoners' Rights Group 'Due to Israeli, U.S. Pressure',

The Palestinian Authority has suspended payments to the Palestinian Prisoners Club, a nongovernmental organization that is considered the leader of the public and legal fight for prisoners’ rights…Figures in the prisoners club said the PA’s decision to seemingly withdraw funding is due to pressure from Israel and the United States regarding assistance to Palestinian prisoners, plus the PPC’s support for the hunger strike in Israel by Fatah-affiliated prisoners earlier this year.

With reforms, Palestinian economy could grow 7% each year - World Bank,

The bank called on the Palestinians to strengthen its central government and pass a series of fiscal reforms including improved tax collection, increased investment in public infrastructure and vocational training, and an overhaul of business regulation. It also said Israel should streamline procedures at border crossings, remove restrictions on Palestinians entering Area C of the West Bank, which is controlled by Israel under the 1993 Oslo Accords, and lift the blockade on Gaza.

The PA's Gift to Hebron Settlers,

Amira Hass writes, “Through [Issa Amro’s] arrest, the PA exposed its joint interests with Israel and proved once more that its very existence has become its raison d’être. It also betrayed political stupidity and disregard for the Palestinian popular struggle against the land thieves and population expellers.”

U.S.-Israel/Palestine Relations

Trump administration okay with Israel keeping aid boost from Congress,

The Trump administration will not stand in the way of defense assistance funding to Israel added by the US Congress and won’t hold Israel to its pledge to ensure such funds are returned.


A new campaign from IfNotNow called #YouNeverToldMe was born out of a pattern of realizations that the Israel education American Jews received during our youth was one-sided and incomplete.

Israeli Minister: Trump must freeze, change, or cancel Iran nuke deal,

“The prime minister must demand from President Trump that he freeze, change or cancel the Iran nuclear deal,” Intelligence Minister Israel Katz said on Monday at the IDC Herzliya International Institute for Counter-Terrorism conference.


UN rights head accuses Israel of ‘serious violations’ of international law,

The head of the United Nations Human Rights Council on Monday accused Israel of committing “serious violations of international humanitarian law and human rights” in the West Bank, while also criticizing Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for pushing for limiting foreign funding to Israeli human rights groups.

Israel cuts off water to Palestinian village for a week,

Some 50 Palestinians from the northern West Bank village of Ein al-Beida staged a protest last week against an Israeli decision to cut off the water supply to their village for over a week. The protest, which ended with no violence or arrests, was held by mostly local farmers.