June 1st

Egypt rejects U.S. plan for Arab-Israel normalization
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Zvi Barel - June 1, 2009 - 12:00am

Egypt has rejected an American proposal for gradual normalization between the Arab world and Israel that would have allowed Israeli planes to fly freely through Arab air space. The idea arose during discussions in Washington last week between Egyptian Foreign Minister Ahmed Aboul Gheit, Egyptian intelligence chief Omar Suleiman and senior White House and State Department officials, including National Security Advisor James Jones and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

Goldstone's UN inquiry team arrives in Gaza
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from BBC News
June 1, 2009 - 12:00am

A UN team investigating possible war crimes in Gaza, led by Richard Goldstone, has arrived in the Strip on a week-long fact finding mission. The four-member team entered from Egypt after Israel failed to grant visas, despite repeated requests by the UN. The UN wants to investigate whether Israel and Hamas committed war crimes during Israel's three-week operation in Gaza in December and January. Israel accuses the UN branch carrying out the mission of bias against it.

Jewish settler attack injures Palestinians
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from BBC News
June 1, 2009 - 12:00am

Several Palestinian workers have been hurt in an attack by a group of Jewish settlers in the northern West Bank. One worker suffered serious head injuries, as dozens of masked settlers threw rocks at their vehicles. Police say no arrests have been made following the attack near the Palestinian city of Nablus, which is circled by Israeli settlements. Friction and violence is common between Jewish settlers and Palestinians in the West Bank, captured by Israel in 1967.

West Bank fight a grim reminder
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Arab News
(Editorial) June 1, 2009 - 12:00am

The six people who have been killed in a firefight between Hamas fighters and Palestinian policemen is not only the worst clash in the West Bank since Hamas seized control of the Gaza Strip two years ago. The deaths also served as a grim reminder that it is not just Benjamin Netanyahu who stands in the way of peace. The Palestinians themselves are doing a fairly decent job of hampering their own aspirations.

The Middle East peace process may be on the line
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Bitterlemons
by Mkhaimar Abusada - (Opinion) June 1, 2009 - 12:00am

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's visit to the White House, the first such visit since US President Barack Obama came to power, revealed major differences between the two leaders. Most importantly, Netanyahu could not say the magic words, "two states for two peoples." He did concede that both Palestinians and Israelis will have to live and coexist side-by-side, and that he supported self-rule for Palestinians. But he made no mention of a state and thus failed to endorse the cornerstone of Washington's Middle East policy, underscoring a rare rift in United States-Israel relations.

A Historic Opportunity for Obama
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Dar Al-Hayat
by Raghida Dergham - May 29, 2009 - 12:00am

When US President Barack Obama gives his awaited speech in Egypt next Thursday on June 4, it will be in his interest to have thoroughly examined the speech given by his predecessor, George W. Bush, on April 4, 2002, which was the most powerful speech given by a US President concerning the establishment of a Palestinian state alongside the State of Israel.

Resolving the Palestinian-Israeli conflict would make the US troops less threatened and remove the arguments of movements
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Dar Al-Hayat
by Raghida Dergham - (Interview) June 1, 2009 - 12:00am

The Commander of the US Central Command, General David Petraeus, told Al-Hayat in an interview that resolving the Palestinian-Israeli conflict is “very central” for his work as commander of US forces in 20 countries, mostly of them in the Muslim world, and that dealing with this conflict, just like closing Guantanamo, would be “a positive step forward” towards making the US troops less threatened. He said: “I think a lot of things would be better if this issue is resolved.

The Difficult Questions Concerning Obama's Middle East Visit
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Asharq Alawsat
by Bilal Hassen - June 1, 2009 - 12:00am

The Palestinian catastrophe [Al-Nakbah] anniversary month, May, has come to an end with American President Barack Obama receiving Palestinian President Mahmud Abbas, and by the end of this month - which has been a month of meetings and discussions - the American president immediately starts his practical moves to concretize the results of his meetings and consultations. This will be done with two visits: A first visit to Saudi Arabia, on Wednesday 3 June 2009, and a second visit to Egypt, on Thursday 4 June 2009.

American Task Force on Palestine - 1634 Eye St. NW, Suite 725, Washington DC 20006 - Telephone: 202-262-0017