A Thundering Silence
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
(Editorial) January 23, 2008 - 8:48pm

The 14-year-old girls who spent three weeks in jail because they refused to identify themselves after being arrested at an illegal outpost are just one example of what is happening in the religious Zionist camp. It is easy to feel sympathy for minors whom the legal system arrested as a form of punishment, since arrest is not supposed to serve this purpose. In that sense, the court that released them was right to do so.

They Neither See Nor Remember
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Amira Hass - January 23, 2008 - 8:47pm

The security establishment was quick on Monday to boast of the success of its tactic of escalation against Gaza: Look, the number of Qassams declined. By the time these lines are published, the security establishment may spin another logical axiom: Since we renewed the supply of diesel fuel on a one-time basis, the Palestinians have gone back to firing Qassams. The conclusion: Continue the escalation. The logic of escalation is the middle name of the current defense minister, Ehud Barak, and many Israelis are adopting it.

Evangelicals Key In South Carolina
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Al Jazeera English
January 23, 2008 - 8:46pm

Evangelical Christians are an important voting bloc in US politics - their strong support was crucial to George Bush's narrow victories in 2000 and 2004. And this year, South Carolina, a state with a strong Evangelical community, will be a crucial test, especially for the Republican candidates. One of them must inspire the Evangelical vote to have any hope of becoming president in November.

From Birmingham To Gaza, A Same Struggle
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Daily Star
by Rami Khouri - January 23, 2008 - 8:45pm

I have two texts that I pull off my bookshelf every now and then for renewed stimulation and hope in times of conflict and pessimism. One is the Book of Isaiah in the Bible - that great work of Jewish warning, faith and hope during times of peril in exile; and the other is the collected works of Martin Luther King, Jr., the great American civil rights leader, whose annual commemoration day took place on Monday.

Deborah Orr: The Tragic Truth About Collective Punishment
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Independent
by Deborah Orr - (Opinion) January 23, 2008 - 8:44pm

I wish in no way to condone Israel's wantonly cruel policy of laying siege to Gaza, which it has been pursuing ever since it withdrew from the territory in 2004. But I must say that I do find it a bit rich, this proposition that suddenly and uniquely Israel has resorted to "collective punishment" of the Palestinians. The awful truth is that collective punishment of the Palestinians has been used as a weapon in the Arab-Israeli conflict ever since the inception of the Israeli state, in all sorts of ways, by all sides.

'wartime' In Israeli Border Town
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Bbc News
by Tim Franks - January 23, 2008 - 8:43pm

The good news, for Or Cohen, is that she has managed to coax people out of their houses in Sderot. "Everyone is so sad and so anxious," she says. "People told me they were afraid to leave their homes". In the end, though, a little more than 100 people - mainly residents from Sderot - turned up at the town's new community centre to join in that evening's celebrations marking the festival of Tu B'Shevat, the Jewish "New Year for Trees". Ms Cohen had organised the entertainment.

Tony Blair Warned That Middle East Peace Mission Faces Failure
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Times
by Catherine Philp - January 23, 2008 - 8:42pm

Tony Blair’s peace mission in the Middle East is doomed because he is not prepared to confront the Israelis, Palestinian business and political leaders said yesterday. Yasser Abed Rabbo, the chief Palestinian negotiator, gave Mr Blair’s mission to revive the West Bank’s economy a “5 per cent chance” unless he was prepared to talk tough to Israel over loosening restrictions on freedom of movement.

This Brutal Siege Of Gaza Can Only Breed Violence
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Guardian
by Karen Koning Abuzayd - (Commentary) January 23, 2008 - 8:41pm

Gaza is on the threshold of becoming the first territory to be intentionally reduced to a state of abject destitution, with the knowledge, acquiescence and - some would say - encouragement of the international community. An international community that professes to uphold the inherent dignity of every human being must not allow this to happen.

Reckless In Gaza
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jewish Daily Forward
(Editorial) January 23, 2008 - 8:40pm

Ehud Olmert, Israel’s perpetually embattled prime minister, probably thought he was performing a daring display of political balancing this week. First he saw off the visiting President Bush with grand words of peace. Then he announced that he opposed any major ground incursion into lawless Gaza. The next day, his troops opened up the bloodiest day of Israeli-Palestinian fighting in more than a year.

Israel Vows To Keep Pressure On Gaza To Stop Rocket Salvoes
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Jewish Telegraphic Agency (JTA)
by Leslie Susser - (Analysis) January 23, 2008 - 8:39pm

Despite international and Arab protests, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert has indicated Israel will keep up its pressure on the Gaza Strip in an effort to force Hamas and other Palestinian militias to stop their cross-border rocket attacks on Israeli civilians. But Israel relaxed its blockade somewhat on Tuesday after masses of Palestinians tried to cross the Gaza-Egypt border. On Wednesday, the crowds succeeded in knocking down the border fence, and thousands of Palestinians streamed into Egypt to stock up on supplies before returning to Gaza.

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