1. A statement last night from Benjamin Netanyahu's office, affirming Israeli settlers' right to take over Palestinian land in the occupied West Bank, including the takeover of a house in Hebron (thanks to Lia Tarachansky of Real News Network):
PM Netanyahu’s Remarks on Strengthening Jewish Communities in Judea and Samaria (Communicated by the Prime Minister’s Media Adviser)
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu made the following remarks this evening (Wednesday), 4.4.12:
“The principle that has guided me is to strengthen Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria [biblical names for West Bank]. Today, I instructed that the status of three communities – Bruchim, Sansana and Rechalim – be provided for. I also asked Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein to see to it that the Ulpana hill in Beit El not be evacuated. This is the principle that has guided us. We are strengthening Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria and we are strengthening the Jewish community in Hebron, the City of the Patriarchs. But there is one principle that we uphold. We do everything according to the law and we will continue to do so.”
2. Scott Roth tweeted the news today that those Hebron settlers at Beit El was evicted after all, under orders from Defense Minister Ehud Barak:
Again, why the Beinart [boycott the settlements] thesis is wrong. Settlements are directed and administered from *democratic* Israel.
3. At J Street last weekend, many people conceded that Netanyahu will be Prime Minister for a long time. Peter Beinart said:
I don’t believe that Netanyahu is a hopeless case. He can respond to pressure. He hasn’t had the kind of epiphany that Olmert had.
Olmert's epiphany was that Israel was on a path to self-destruction. Beinart said that Netanyahu would have this epiphany as a result of stronger American pressure.
P.S. In fairness, Beinart is on this too. Here's a tweet from yesterday, putting the onus for refractory Israeli behavior on Americans:
When will Am Jewish orgs discuss this? [Israeli] Finance Minister: Financial assistance to settlements grew during my term- http://bit.ly/HhTuuJ
Thanks to Paul Mutter.