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PeaceCast

PeaceCast is a podcast produced in Washington by Americans for Peace Now, the sister-organization of Israel’s preeminent peace movement, exploring issues and trends relating to peace and security for Israel, focusing on Israel’s conflict with the Palestinians and efforts to resolve it. If you care about Israel, about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, about Israel’s future as a democracy and a Jewish state, this podcast is for you. Episodes feature experts, activists, advocates and scholars whose work or passion is Israeli-Palestinian peace.
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Please visit the Americans for Peace Now webpage to learn more.

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Feb 17, 2019

Gilead (Gili) Sher is an Israeli lawyer, scholar, expert on, and practitioner of, Israeli negotiations with the Palestinians. He was Prime Minister Ehud Barak’s chief negotiator between 1999 and 2001. Now he directs the Center for Applied Negotiations at Israel’s Institute for National Security Studies (INSS) in Tel Aviv.

APN’s acting CEO Aviva Meyer joined Ori Nir for a conversation with Sher on February 15th, 2019 at Georgetown University's government Department, where Sher is now the Goldman Visiting Professor.

We addressed the impact of the diplomatic impasse between Israelis and Palestinians, and what can be done to pave the road to a two-state solution in the absence of formal negotiations over a comprehensive peace accord.

With comments or feedback email Ori at onir@peacenow.org

Links:

Sher’s bio: https://www.inss.org.il/person/shergilead/

The INSS plan: http://www.inss.org.il/inss-plan-political-security-framework-israeli-palestinian-arena/

The Blue and White Future’s plan: http://www.bluewhitefuture.org/?page_id=560

A West Bank map showing possible land swaps: http://archive.nytimes.com/www.nytimes.com/interactive/2011/09/12/opinion/mapping-mideast-peace.html?_r=1#nytg-optionsBox

 

 

 

Feb 8, 2019

This show features two experts on Washington Middle East policy and legislative affairs: Debra Shushan, APN’s Policy and Government Relations Director, and Lara Friedman, who preceded her in this position, and is now the President of the Foundation for Middle East Peace.

Together, they drill down on the Anti-Terrorism Clarification Act, better known by its acronym ATCA, a piece of legislation that tells a fascinating story of how policy on Israeli-Palestinian affairs is being made in Washington.

Links:

The text of ATCA

Debra Shushan’s op-ed in The Hill on ATCA 

Scott Anderson’s article on ATCA

Lara Friedman’s Forward article on efforts to use legal action in the US against Palestinians 

APN’s (Ambassador David) Friedman File 

 

Jan 29, 2019

Currently a professor of law at at the S. J. Quinney College of Law, University of Utah, Amos Guiora is the former Commander of the Israel Defense Forces' School of Military Law. Before retiring from the IDF as a Lieutenant Colonel, he was also the Judge Advocate for the Navy and Home Front Command, as well as the Legal Adviser to the IDF's commander of the Gaza Strip, a military court judge and a military prosecutor. 

In this episode -- a longer episode than the usual -- he talks about the interplay between law, ethics, and politics in the context of Israel's occupation of the West Bank. 

 

Jan 8, 2019

Brian Reeves, Director of External Relations at Shalom Achshav (Peace Now), APN’s Israeli sister-organization, talks about the new West Bank settlement scandal: a plan to build another settlement near the West Bank town of Bethlehem, which would complete a ring around Bethlehem and severely threaten a two-state solution. Brian also talks about broader trends in settlement activity in 2018 and about what Peace Now’s Settlement Watch Project is focusing on going into 2019.

Links:

Jan 6, 2019

Rashida Tlaib of Michigan is the first Palestinian-American woman to serve in Congress.

Public attention focused on a profanity that Tlaib used in reference to President Trump shortly after being sworn in to the 116th Congress. 

This episode, instead, focuses on the significance of Tlaib’s coming to Washington for the Palestinian-American community, a community that has never enjoyed much political clout in the U.S. 

Hanna Hanania, a prominent leader of the community, talks about what it means for Palestinian-American to have a progressive young woman in Congress who proudly asserts her Palestinian identity. 

With any feedback, please email me at onir@peacenow.org

 

Jan 1, 2019

A new report by Israel's Institute for National Security Studies (INSS) analyzes Israel's relations with American Jews through the prism of Israeli national security.

The report is chiefly directed at Israeli policy makers, and therefore has so far only been published in Hebrew. The English translation will be published soon.

Dr. Michal Hatuel-Radushitzky, one of the report's authors, talks about the chief observations and recommendations of the report. 

 

 

Dec 13, 2018

Known by many as Mr. Jerusalem, one of the world’s leading experts on Jewish-Arab relations in Jerusalem, Danny Seidemann is the founder and director of Terrestrial Jerusalem, an Israeli non-governmental organization that works to identify and track the full spectrum of developments in Jerusalem that could impact either the political process or permanent status options, destabilize the city or spark violence, or create humanitarian crises.

We spoke about the recent elections for Jerusalem’s municipal council and what should be expected of the new mayor, Moshe Lion. We spoke about the settlement in the East Jerusalem neighborhoods of Silwan and Sheikh Jarrah. We spoke about the leaping West Bank annexation policies of the Israeli government and the role that Jerusalem plays in these policies. We spoke about the Trump administration’s policy on Jerusalem. The conversation with Danny was fun. He was as witty, smart and analytical as always.

Dec 9, 2018

Abdallah Hamarsheh is the acting director and co-founder of Zimam , a Palestinian civil society organization working to enable and empower youth to take a leadership role in creating a pluralistic and democratic Palestinian State. Zimam is the outgrowth of the Palestinian chapter of One Voice and is still supported by OneVoice .

Together with Mara Lee, the Global Executive Director of OneVoice, Abdallah Hamarsheh spoke with Ori Nir and Debra Shushan at APN’s office in Washington.

Please include APN in your end-of-year giving. To donate click here and write PeaceCast in the comments field. Thank you!  

Nov 30, 2018

Eight out of the 22 players on the current Israeli soccer national team are non-Jews, of them 7 are Arabs and one, Bibras Natkho, is an Israeli Circassian Muslim. He is also the national team captain. That is unprecedented. Never before have so many non-Jewish players played for the national team. 

The soccer field in Israel serves young Arab men as a tool for upward mobility while it also serves as a platform for anti-Arab bigotry and racism. 

Tomer Fadlon, an expert on the politics and diplomacy of soccer at Tel Aviv University explains the apparent contradiction and much more. 

 

Nov 16, 2018

Jim Gerstein is a pollster and a founding partner of GBA Strategies, a DC-based firm that provides research-based strategic counsel for candidates running for office, non-profit organizations, and for arts and cultural institutions.

Since 2008, Gerstein has been conducting national polls of American Jews on election nights, commissioned by J Street.

In this episode, J Street's Jessica Rosenblum and APN's Ori Nir talk with Gerstein about his November 6th, 2018 poll.

This episode marks a new partnership between Americans for Peace Now and J Street on PeaceCast.  

The data files of Gerstein's poll are here.

Nov 16, 2018

This episode is an edited down version of a November 15th 2018 briefing call with strategic affairs expert Yossi Alpher, a former senior Mossad official and the former director of Tel Aviv University's Jaffee Center for Strategic Studies. 

Alpher is the Author of Hard Questions Tough Answers, APN's weekly news analysis.

For past PeaceCast episodes on Gaza, see here

for the full recording of the briefing call, see here

Nov 8, 2018

This episode, like several episodes we’ve produced in the past, focuses on the Gaza border. It features a conversation with Ose Oyamendan, a documentary filmmaker whose film A Bridge Over Blood documents efforts by Israeli peace activists in southern Israel and Palestinian activists in the Gaza Strip to build bridges of understanding and friendship to advance peace.  

Check out the film’s web site here 

Nov 2, 2018

This episode features a conversation with Dov Waxman, a Professor of Political Science, International Affairs, and Israel Studies at Northeastern University, and Director of Northeastern’s Middle East Program.

We talked with Dov about one of his fields of expertise: the growing shift in American Jews’ attitudes toward Israel.

Dov is the author of Trouble in the Tribe: The American Jewish Conflict Over Israel.

You can find the book on Amazon here.

Oct 31, 2018

Donald McIntyre, the former Jerusalem bureau chief of the British Independent, is the author of a new book on the Gaza Strip. The book puts a human face on Gaza and provides some valuable keys to unlock the conundrum that Gaza is. This episode is another effort by PeaceCast to shed light on Gaza, a small strip of land a perpetual state of crisis.

Click here for the book on Amazon 

 

Oct 19, 2018

This episode’s guest is Daniel Kurtzer, a professor in Middle East policy studies at Princeton University and the United States’ former ambassador to Israel and Egypt.

Dan’s New York Daily News article blasts the Trump administration’s decision to merge the US consulate in Jerusalem with the US embassy to Israel, which has recently been removed from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. In this conversation, Ambassador Kurtzer examines this development and analyzes this administration’s approach policy on Israeli-Palestinian peace.

Kurtzer’s New York Daily News article is here 

Kurtzer’s December 2016 on Ambassador David Friedman's appointment to be America's ambassador to Israel is here 

Kurtzer’s book The Peace Puzzle on Amazon is here 

APN’s press release on Trump’s merging the consulate into the embassy is here 

Oct 2, 2018

Orly Halpern is an American-born, Jerusalem-based freelance journalist who edits News Nosh, Americans for Peace Now’s roundup of the daily news from Israel.

She prepares the English language review of Israel’s Hebrew media early in the morning, Israel time, taking advantage of the seven-hour time difference between Jerusalem and America's East Coast so that News Nosh subscribers can scan the Israeli news of the day with their morning coffee and bagel.

News Nosh is a free service. Subscribe to it here: https://peacenow.org/issue.php?cat=news-nosh#.W7O5nWgzaM8

This episode goes much beyond News Nosh. Orly talks about her career in journalism, about Israeli journalism and about Israeli society.

With any feedback or ideas that you may have for PeaceCast, please email Ori Nir at onir@peacenow.org

Sep 17, 2018

Hagit Ofran is one of the world's leading experts on West Bank settlements. In a conversation at her Jerusalem home, she analyzes current trends in West Bank settlement planning and construction, as well as Israeli government actions to "legalize" illegal outposts and to allow the construction of new illegal outposts. 

Settlement Watch's web page: http://peacenow.org.il/en/category/settlements

APN's web site: https://peacenow.org/

Donate to APN: https://peacenow.org/donate

Sep 13, 2018

This episode's guest is Jeremy Ben Ami, the founder and president of J Street. Jeremy recently published an article in the New Republic headlined Don’t Give Up: Why Liberal Jews Must Not Abandon the Fight for Israel’s Future. His is one of several articles in the current edition of the New Republic, devoted to the relationship today between American Jews and Israel.

On these Days of Awe between Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur, we reflected and took stock of where our pro-Israel pro-peace movement stands and where we wish to go.

Read Jeremy’s New Republic article here: https://newrepublic.com/article/151004/dont-give

Visit J Street’s web site: https://jstreet.org/

Visit APN’s web site: https://peacenow.org/

Donate to APN here: https://peacenow.org/donate

 

Sep 6, 2018

This episode features a conversation with Amos Guiora, a professor at the University of Utah’s S. J. Quinney College of Law.

Amos has written a book about the crime and the sin of complicity. I thought this would be a good time to reflect on complicity, on by-standing.

This episode was recorded a couple of days before Rosh Hashana, the Jewish new year, a time when we reflect on the year that passed and commit or resolve to do better next year. Earlier today, I put Rosh Hashana greeting cards on the desks of my colleagues here at APN, in which I resolved to be more engaged this coming year, more engaged with the cause that we work to advance: Israeli-Palestinian peace.

On Rosh Hashana, I implore you too, my listeners, to become more engaged – engaged politically and engaged with APN. Sign up to receive our materials, engage with our action alerts, read our articles and analyses, and please support us with a donation.

Shana Tova!

To donate: https://peacenow.org/donate

Amos Guiora’s book, The Crime of Complicity: The Bystander in the Holocaust: https://crimeofcomplicity.com/

Hadag Nahash’s Sticker Song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GIbjpev6U5s

 

 

 

Aug 31, 2018

August 30th, 2018 was Debra DeLee’s last day as Americans for Peace Now’s President and CEO. As she was packing up her office, Debra sat down with PeaceCast’s host Ori Nir and with APN’s Director of Policy and Government Relations, Debra Shushan.

We talked about Debra’s frustration with America’s Jewish establishment’s inability to confront the moral challenges related to Israel’s occupation of the West Bank and Gaza Strip. We talked about the leadership role of women in Jewish organizations. We talked the wonderful people that comprise the pro-Israel, pro-peace movement in the United States.  And we talked about hope.

Debra led APN for the past 21 years, through thick and thin, and has been one of the most influential figures in the movement. In addition to her professionalism and her leadership skills, Debra is a mensch. Her humanity and charm clearly shine in this conversation.

Read Debra’s farewell letter here: http://peacenow.org/entry.php?id=28808#.W4ihA-hKiUk

Read Debra’s tribute to her mother, Ruth Epstein, here: https://peacenow.org/entry.php?id=16950#.W4ihaOhKiUk

 

Aug 20, 2018

Israeli journalist and activist Anat Saragusti helps us remember and pay tribute to Uri Avneri, an icon of Israeli public life and of Israel’s peace movement.

Saragusti is a leading Israeli journalist and publicist. She was the CEO of Agenda, the Israeli Center for Strategic Communications. She was a news editor,  reporter and photo journalist for several Israeli news outlets, as well as a peace activist, an active feminist, and a human rights advocate. She is a founding member of Ta Ha'Itonayot (a group of leading Israeli women in the media) and of Merkaz Media Nashim (the Gender Media Center).

Saragusti was a protege and long-time friend of Avneri. 

Please send feedback to onir@peacenow.org

 

Aug 18, 2018

To explore Israel’s new Nation-State Law, we talked with Yasmeen abu-Fraiha, a young Israeli-Arab of Bedouin origin, a medical doctor and researcher, who is a glaring Israeli success story. Two years ago, at the age of 27, the Israeli financial newspaper Globes included her in a list of the 40 most promising young Israelis.

Abu-Fraiha is an “assimilated” Israeli-Arab, who grew up in a Jewish community in southern Israel and whose Hebrew is better than her Arabic. Most of her friends are Jewish Israeli. She knows the history of Zionism better than most Israeli Jews. Still, she feels like the state – her state – is trying to deny her Israeliness through the Knesset’s latest legislative action.

Abu-Fraiha is currently acting as the Executive Director of GENESIS, an NGO she founded that aims to prevent genetic diseases in the Middle East, especially in the Bedouin community, by spearheading premarital genetic testing and matching. She holds a BSc in Medical Science from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and an MD from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

Yasmeen’s 972 article https://972mag.com/i-dont-need-a-law-to-remind-me-of-my-inequality/136874/

Yasmeen’s Forbes profile: https://www.forbes.com/sites/carolinehoward/2017/08/10/a-young-bedouin-doctor-pioneering-genetic-testing-in-israels-negev-desert-30-under-30/#a7769f049d16

 

 

 

Jul 25, 2018

This episode features a recording of The Dove, a live storytelling show modeled after The Moth. It features stories about the conflict, told by young people from the region, underscoring the humanity that brings together Israelis and Palestinians and offers hope for peace. 

This show, recorded on July 23rd 2018 at Washington DC's Busboys and Poets, was produced in partnership with New Story Leadership, a Washington-based program that brings to Washington 5 young Israelis and 5 Palestinians for a month of leadership training, networking and fun. The storytellers are eight of the program's participants.

Jul 20, 2018

On July 19th, we hosted Shibley Telhami for a briefing call on US-Palestinian relations.

Dr. Telhami is the Anwar Sadat Professor for Peace and Development at the University of Maryland and a nonresident senior fellow at the Brookings Institution. 

You can find a recording of the entire hour we spent with Dr. Telhami on our web site here

This version, edited down to about 30 minutes, includes two main themes

One is Shibley’s insightful analysis of the widening gap in values between American progressives – and not only progressives – and the ruling elite in Israel. Shibley brought this up in relation to the Nation-State Law that the Knesset passed the night before we spoke.

The second theme was an analysis of the Trump administration’s actions and thinking – if there is real thinking – regarding the Israel-Palestine question, peace efforts etc.

As always, I welcome your feedback. Thanks to those of you who have written to me. My email address is onir@peacenow.org

Jul 15, 2018

Together with several other participants, Bethany Zaiman walked out on a Birthright program earlier this month to protest the program's imbalanced, one-sided approach to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and its avoiding the occupation. 

Zaiman, an anthropology doctoral student, explains why she and a handful of other young women walked out on the program, nd what she thinks is wrong about Birthright.

  

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