Virginia Lawyers versus Israel

The Virginia state lawyers’ organization has canceled a planned seminar in Israel, citing “legitimate concern” expressed by some members over “unacceptable discriminatory policies and practices pertaining to border security that affect travelers” to the Jewish state. David Bernstein comments:

The idea that either the state bar as an attorney organization or as a state agency has some obligation to avoid Israel is nonsense. Surely [state bar president Kevin] Martingayle and [his] colleagues can’t be so naive and out-of-touch to think that the concerns raised are not part of the broader divestment, sanctions, and boycott movement meant to delegitimize Israel. . . .

As near as I can tell, the only public discussion of all this before Martingayle’s letter was a petition circulated three days ago by anonymous “Concerned Members of the Virginia State Bar” that, as of this writing, has received a grand total of 34 signatures. It’s hard to imagine that Martingayle and colleagues canceled a planned event that already had a hotel booked, a continuing education program, and even optional tours set up based on those objections. Who are the “other individuals” mentioned by Martingayle who objected?

Read more at Washington Post

More about: Anti-Semitism, BDS, Israel & Zionism, Law, US-Israel relations

Planning for the Day after the War in the Gaza Strip

At the center of much political debate in Israel during the past week, as well as, reportedly, of disagreement between Jerusalem and Washington, is the problem of how Gaza should be governed if not by Hamas. Thus far, the IDF has only held on to small parts of the Strip from which it has cleared out the terrorists. Michael Oren lays out the parameters of this debate over what he has previous called Israel’s unsolvable problem, and sets forth ten principles that any plan should adhere to. Herewith, the first five:

  1. Israel retains total security control in Gaza, including control of all borders and crossings, until Hamas is demonstrably defeated. Operations continue in Rafah and elsewhere following effective civilian evacuations. Military and diplomatic efforts to secure the hostages’ release continue unabated.
  2. Civil affairs, including health services and aid distribution, are administered by Gazans unaffiliated with Hamas. The model will be Area B of Judea and Samaria, where Israel is in charge of security and Palestinians are responsible for the civil administration.
  3. The civil administration is supervised by the Palestinian Authority once it is “revitalized.” The PA first meets benchmarks for ending corruption and establishing transparent institutions. The designation and fulfillment of the benchmarks is carried out in coordination with Israel.
  4. The United States sends a greatly expanded and improved version of the Dayton Mission that trained PA police forces in Gaza after Israel’s disengagement.
  5. Abraham Accords countries launch a major inter-Arab initiative to rebuild and modernize Gaza.

Read more at Times of Israel

More about: Gaza Strip, Gaza War 2023, Israeli Security, U.S.-Israel relationship