January 28th

Gaza's Falling Wall Changes Middle East Map For Ever
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Guardian
January 28, 2008 - 7:25pm

They came and went in lorries and gas tankers, in flatbed trucks loaded with cattle and sheep, in coaches and mini-buses, loaded by the dozen in the backs of trucks, all shuttling across Gaza's southern border. Four days ago they went on foot like refugees, but yesterday for the first time the trucks drove through and it felt like an unstoppable momentum had been reached.

Gaza’s Misery Has To Be Stopped
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Financial Times
(Editorial) January 28, 2008 - 7:23pm

The tens of thousands of Palestinians who burst out of Gaza into Egypt this week in search of food, fuel and medicine have temporarily broken the siege that had tightened like a noose around this teeming territory ever since Hamas took over the Gaza Strip last June. Like the lid coming off a pressure cooker, the blown-up border fence has avoided a bigger explosion – for now. But Gaza’s humanitarian disaster and conflict shows every sign it could escalate into war if it is not brought under control.

Palestinians Clash Over Control Of Border
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Times
by James Hider - January 28, 2008 - 7:22pm

The Palestinian Government of Mahmoud Abbas said yesterday that it had reached a deal with Egypt to take control of the Gaza border, which Hamas militants breached with blowtorches and explosives last week, allowing hundreds of thousands of people to cross. Within hours Hamas officials denied that any such agreement side-lining the Islamists had been sealed with Cairo, which is struggling to contain the chaos that erupted on its border last week.

Gaza Border Crisis Puts Egypt On The Spot
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Bbc News
by Ian Pannell - January 28, 2008 - 7:20pm

Alaa smiled and pulled me by the arm. Firstly he wanted to check my credentials. "You are a foreign correspondent?"   I nodded and we got the camera ready to record an interview.  He shook his head - not an interview, he just wanted to just tell me something. In faltering English he declared: "This is the happiest day of my life!"

360 Days
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Israel Policy Forum
by M.J. Rosenberg - (Opinion) January 28, 2008 - 7:18pm

Reading about the Vietnam War, as I have been doing lately, is maddening. As President Lyndon B. Johnson makes fateful decisions that will ultimately leave 50,000 Americans dead and destroy his presidency, I almost want to shout out, “Stop! Are you blind? Can’t you see where this is leading?” But, of course, LBJ couldn’t see that.

To Avoid Fence, Jerusalem Arabs Are Making Move To Jewish Areas
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Jewish Telegraphic Agency (JTA)
by Dina Kraft - January 28, 2008 - 7:17pm

At Cafe Malcha in this city's French Hill neighborhood, Hebrew and Arabic newspapers sit on the counter and both languages are spoken amid the din of espresso machines and customers' laughter. The cafe’s back room is a well-known meeting place for Jewish and Arab businessmen, some of whom live in French Hill, a quiet neighborhood of stone apartment buildings and pine trees around Hebrew University’s Mount Scopus campus.

Israel Vows Not To Block Supplies To Gaza
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The New York Times
by Steven Erlanger - January 28, 2008 - 7:16pm

Prime Minister Ehud Olmert of Israel promised the Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas, on Sunday that Israel would no longer disrupt the supply of food, medicine and necessary energy into the Gaza Strip and intended to prevent a “humanitarian disaster” there. Last Wednesday, the Hamas rulers of Gaza broke open the border to Egypt, allowing hundreds of thousands of Palestinians to seek goods that Israel had restricted in its clampdown on the region.

January 28, 2008 - Vol. 9, Issue 21
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Americans For Peace Now
by Middle East Peace Report - January 28, 2008 - 7:15pm

Military Escalation is a Boon for Hamas: Even before the breach of the Gaza-Egypt border, the escalation in cross-border attacks between Gaza and Israel had pumped up public support for Hamas. This was the principle finding of a poll conducted in the West Bank and Gaza by the Ramallah-based AWRAD research center, when compared with an AWRAD survey from shortly before the November Annapolis peace conference.

Bush Hits A Wall In The Mideast
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Washington Post
by Jim Hoagland - January 28, 2008 - 7:14pm

Watching Nancy Pelosi, John Boehner and other congressional leaders craft a stimulus package to calm the turbulent economy is like watching President Bush pursue his equally implausible and belated Middle East peace initiative. In each case, the challenges are so much larger than the means suddenly being brought to bear that you don't know whether to laugh or to cry.

Israeli 'economic Warfare' To Include Electricity Cuts In Gaza
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Washington Post
by Ellen Knickmeyer - January 28, 2008 - 7:13pm

Saying they were waging "economic warfare" against the Gaza Strip's Hamas leaders, Israeli officials told the Supreme Court on Sunday that the military intends to start cutting electricity to the Palestinian territory and continue restricting fuel. The statements by Israel's state attorney, outlining Defense Ministry plans, came in response to a lawsuit filed by Israeli and Palestinian rights groups.

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