Donald Trump’s secretary of state pick Rex Tillerson at his Senate confirmation hearing, January 11, 2016. (Screenshot)
In his Senate confirmation hearing Wednesday, former ExxonMobil CEO and Secretary of State-designate Rex Tillerson said that a “two-state solution” is an “aspirational goal” to end the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, but he also shed doubt on whether or not it could come to fruition.
“I think [the ‘two-state solution’] is the dream that everyone is in pursuit of,” Tillerson said in his hearing with the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. “Whether it can ever be a reality remains to be seen.”
Tillerson, whose views on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict were previously unknown, said the two-state plan “has to be a shared aspiration of all of us. I think it’s the State Department’s role to try and create an environment that brings parties together that want to find a way forward. I can tell you that under the conditions today, it’s extremely challenging to do that, but that has to be the aspirational goal.”
President-elect Donald Trump’s secretary of state appointee also singled out the Palestinians for the current deadlock in the peace process with Israel.
“I would say in the case of the Palestinian leadership, while they have renounced violence, it is one thing to renounce it and another to take concrete action to prevent it,” Tillerson said.
“I think until there is a serious demonstration on their part and they are willing to do more than just renounce violence, they are willing to do something to at least interrupt it or interfere with it, it is very difficult to create conditions at the table for parties to have any productive discussion around a settlement,” he added.
Tillerson was also asked for his thoughts on the recent United Nations Security Council resolution condemning Israel for its settlement policy, and whether or not the measure disproportionately blamed Israel for the conflict.
“Israel is, has always been and remains our most important ally in the region,” he said. “The U.N. resolution that was passed, in my view, is not helpful. It actually undermines a good set of conditions for talks to continue.”
Regarding the Iran nuclear deal, Tillerson said he would recommend “a full review of that agreement” with President-elect Trump, adding that “the real important question is what comes at the end of this agreement.”
Read more at https://www.breakingisraelnews.com/81901/trump-secretary-of-state-pick-reveals-unknown-stance-on-israel-by-slamming-two-state-solutio/#HPBzUkLJM0M47D5C.99
A Sa’ar 4.5-class Corvette of the Israeli Navy fires its canons during a naval exercise off the coast of Israel.
Israel’s Defense Ministry on Sunday announced a series of deals for the purchase of combat systems from local defense industries in the amount of $420 million by the end of this year. This is part of a project to acquire warships whose mission would to protect natural gas platforms within Israel’s “economic waters” in the Mediterranean against military threats.
An Israeli soldier training in Krav Maga.
Several dozen members of the Indian military are currently learning how to protect themselves using the Israeli martial art of Krav Maga, India Today reported this weekend.
“I brought Krav Maga to India in year 2002 after intensive training in Israel,” Vikram Kapoor — the head instructor at the International Krav Maga Federation — was quoted as saying. “This is the only self-defense technique that is being evolved every moment and that is why it is the best.”
Culminating a three-year process, delegates at the Mennonite Church USA assembly in Orlando on Thursday adopted a resolution titled “Seeking Peace in Israel and Palestine,” with approximately 98 percent voting in favor. The resolution calls on members to “avoid purchase of products associated with the occupation or produced in settlements in occupied territories.” It also establishes a process for the church to review its investments “for the purpose of withdrawing investments from companies that are profiting from the occupation.”
Rabbi Steven Wernick says Netanyahu recruited progressive Jews to find a compromise for the holy site; now that the PM has reneged, world Jewry won’t be silent
The fight for pluralistic prayer at the Western Wall is a battle already won by Jewry’s Conservative movement. For some 20 years, Conservative Jews have inhabited a spiritual home at Jerusalem’s contentious holy site, which they won through a series of Supreme Court cases — in a section allocated to the Davidson Archaeological
Cave of the Patriarchs in Hebron. (Photo credit: hebron.com)
In a secret ballot held at the World Heritage Committee’s 41st annual summit in Krakow Poland, on Friday, UNESCO voted twelve to three in favor declaring the Holy City of Hebron and the Cave of the Patriarchs “Palestinian world heritage sites”.
The resolution described a Muslim history of the city while blatantly ignoring the Biblical narrative describing 3,000 years of Jewish connection to the site. Six countries abstained from the controversial vote which, at the request of Poland, Croatia, and Jamaica, was a secret ballot; a first for such a vote.
During last month’s 2017 Chicago Dyke March, the true face of “inclusion” among “progressives” finally surfaced. According to the Chicago based newspaper Windy City Times, the march proceeded calmly with people “of all races, genders and gender identities” attending, until “the Dyke March Collective ejected three people carrying Jewish Pride flags (a rainbow flag with a Star of David in the center).”
Something is terribly broken in the relationship between American and Israeli Jews. I say this as an American Jew who has lived in Israel for almost half a century. But if anyone thinks this started with Women of the Wall or PM Netanyahu’s recent – and I believe unfortunate – backtracking on the agreement over egalitarian prayer space at the Kotel, he is suffering from selective memory, if not total denial.
gentleman from times gone by. He was soft-spoken, courtly, and wore his pants hoisted high and held up by suspenders; clearly, a European who had personally endured horrors in the last century.
Indeed, he had personally survived the Holocaust in Poland. Therefore, I could not immediately understand why he now attends a very left-wing synagogue—but, totally incomprehensible, was his unexpected and rather passionate defense of Poland and of the Poles. He argued on their behalf as if his very life still depended upon it.
Indian prime minister Narendra Modi’s decision to visit Jerusalem but not Ramallah has prompted much comment.
The expectation of equal treatment goes back to the Oslo Accords’ signing in Sep. 1993, when the prime minister of Israel, Yitzhak Rabin, represented his government in the handshake with Yasir Arafat, the much-despised chairman of the Palestine Liberation Organization. No one found it strange or inappropriate at the time but things look differently nearly a quarter century later.
Matthew Healy at the Atlantic, one of the few remaining liberal anti-censorship magazines, offers a disingenuous counterpoint to the debate over political correctness.
The attempts to silence dissenting points of view are counter-speech, according to Healy. And counter-speech is an important form of free expression.