Having trouble viewing this email? View it in your web browser

CMEP Weekly Bulletin: ​​In a First, Israeli General Opens Up About IDF Use of Armed Drones

A look at elections, protests and conflicts, and more news in this week’s bulletin.

CMEP’s Bulletin is a weekly round-up of news from the Middle East and represents an array of perspectives on the issues we cover. CMEP does not necessarily agree with all the views expressed in the articles, and they do not speak on CMEP’s behalf.

Image: IDF drone. (IDF Spokesperson's Unit)

In a first, Israeli general opens up about IDF use of armed drones


“Israel on Wednesday (November 9) described what has been an open secret for two decades - that it has used drones not just for surveillance but also in strikes within the country, against Palestinian militants in Gaza, and possibly targets as far away as Iran or Sudan. Israeli censors in July permitted the publication of information about the armed drones and the chief of Israel's artillery corps - which runs the drones together with the air force - used his speech at an industry forum to give what he described as a first public account of the armed versions of the pilot-less planes.”


Image: The recent rise in support for religious Zionism has its roots in Jewish West Bank settlements such as Kiryat Arba. (Kobi Wolf)

Behind Benjamin Netanyahu’s win in Israel: The rise of religious Zionism
Wall Street Journal

“Military towers loom over the highway leading to far-right lawmaker Itamar Ben-Gvir’s hometown, a settlement next to the Palestinian city of Hebron. Residents walk around with pistols strapped to their thighs, just beside their tzitzit, the ritual tassels mandated by Jewish law, as clusters of children play in the streets. Once largely confined to the fringes of Israeli society, an ultranationalist political outlook forged in Jewish West Bank settlements like Kiryat Arba has now been thrust to the center of Israeli public life by Mr. Ben-Gvir’s success in last week’s election. The Religious Zionism ticket co-led by Mr. Ben-Gvir won 14 seats in the 120-seat Parliament, or Knesset, making it the third-largest party in Israel.”


Image: US Ambassador to Israel Tom Nides visited the Allenby Crossing on early Wednesday (Nov. 9), to hear an update on the pilot program which has seen the crossing remain open 24 hours a day, November 9, 2022. (Jeries Mansour, US Office of Palestinian Affairs)

Allenby Border Crossing launches 24-7 pilot opening after US push


“The Allenby Border Crossing between Israel and Jordan opened to passenger traffic 24 hours a day this week, on a pilot program, a step towards fulfilling a promise the Israeli government made to US President Joe Biden during his visit to Israel in July. The pilot began on Sunday morning (November 6) and will continue until Friday afternoon (November 11). US Ambassador to Israel Tom Nides visited the Allenby Crossing on early Wednesday, to hear an update on the pilot program. Nides spoke with Israeli Airports Authority staff, who are operating the border crossing.”

What's Happening at CMEP

Webinar Series: A Land Full of God: A Land Full of God gives American Christians an opportunity to promote peace and justice in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. It shows them how to understand the enmity with brief, digestible, and comprehensive essays about the historical, political, religious, and geographical tensions that have led to many of the dynamics we see today. This mini-course will feature several of the book's contributors in a panel discussion on a different topic each week. We'll end each session with an audience Q & A time. Reading the book is not required for participation.

Fr. Drew Christiansen Holy Land Lecture Series: Join us in Washington, DC November 16th for our inaugural event in our Fr. Drew Christiansen Holy Land Lecture Series. This first talk will be "BEING CHURCH in THE LAND CALLED HOLY" with Mr. Sami El-Yousef, CEO of the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem. He will speak about the presence, aspirations, challenges, and contributions of the Church and its institutions with a focus on the Catholic church. We will explore the spiritual roots and practical application of our Faith through the eyes of those whose experience is rooted in the Land Jesus was born, taught, died, and was resurrected. Registration is free but required.

Will you be at the J Street National Conference? Join Churches for Middle East Peace at J Street's 2022 National Conference, December 3-6, 2022. CMEP will be available with information in the exhibit hall in D.C. You can join the conference in-person or virtually by registering directly with J Street at https://jstreet.org/conference/. Kyle Cristofalo, CMEP's Senior Director of Advocacy and Government Relations, will speak at the J Street National Conference in Washington, DC. His panel, "Evangelical Christians and Israel-Palestine: Assessing the Changing Dynamics" will take place on Monday, December 5th, 11:30am-12:45pm.


Support the work of CMEP:

We couldn't continue in the work of holistic peacebuilding and advocacy without the support of friends like you. Make supporting peace a regular routine part of your month by joining CMEP's Sustainer Circle today!


Image: Prime Minister of Armenia meets with the Presidents of Russia and Azerbaijan in Sochi, October 31, 2022. (Armenia Weekly)

The Sochi Trilateral Summit: Implications for the Nagorno Karabakh conflict settlement process
Armenia Weekly

“On October 31, 2022, Armenian, Azerbaijani and Russian leaders met in Sochi. The last time Pashinyan, Aliyev and Putin met was on November 26, 2021 to discuss the realization of the November 10, 2020, and January 11, 2021, trilateral statements. At that time, Russia was firmly holding a tight grip over the Armenia–Azerbaijan negotiation process, and it seemed that no one could challenge Russian positions. However, since then, the European Union, and recently the US, have started their active involvement in the Armenia–Azerbaijan negotiations. European Council president Charles Michel organized four Armenia–Azerbaijan summits in Brussels (December 2021, April, May and August 2022)."


Image: Iranian students protest against the Islamic regime at Amir Kabir University in Tehran, October 29, 2022. (Twitter screenshot: used in accordance with Clause 27a of the Copyright Law)

Fresh protests erupt at Iranian universities, in Kurdish region
Times of Israel

“New protests erupted in Iran on Sunday (November 6) at universities and in the largely Kurdish northwest, keeping a seven-week anti-regime movement going, even in the face of a fierce crackdown. The protests, triggered in mid-September by the death of Mahsa Amini after she was arrested for allegedly breaching strict dress rules for women, have evolved into the biggest challenge for the clerical leadership since the 1979 revolution. Unlike demonstrations in November 2019, they have been nationwide, spread across social classes, universities, the streets and even schools, with no sign of letting up.”


Image: Daily life in Sanaa after UN-brokered truce expired. 9 October 2022. (EPA-EFE/Yahya Arhab)

Yemen: Attacks on civilians

“It is now just over a month since the expiry of a UN-mediated truce in Yemen that started on 2 April, and we are gravely concerned for the safety and security of civilians. There has been reported loss of life and injuries resulting from sniper attacks and shelling, as well as an attack on a port facility that put the lives of civilians at serious risk. The UN Human Rights Chief, Volker Türk, echoes the calls of the Secretary-General to extend the truce and to work toward a negotiated settlement to bring this protracted and terrible conflict to an end once and for all.”

CMEP's Bulletin is a weekly round-up of news from the Middle East and represents an array of perspectives on the issues we cover. CMEP does not necessarily agree with all the views expressed in the articles, and they do not speak on CMEP's behalf.

Churches for Middle East Peace (CMEP)
110 Maryland Ave NE, Suite 311 | Washington, District of Columbia  20002
(202) 543-1222 | info@cmep.org

Follow Us

Unsubscribe or Manage Your Preferences