July 24th

Reform leader: Most U.S. Jews back settlement freeze
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Natasha Mozgovaya - July 24, 2009 - 12:00am

The vast majority of American Jews back a settlement freeze, according to Rabbi Eric Yoffie, president of the Union of Reform Judaism. "American Jews don't like when their government is at odds with the government of Israel," said Yoffie, whose organization's 1.5 million members make it the largest Jewish denomination in the U.S.

U.S. warns Israel: Don't build up West Bank corridor
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Aluf Benn - July 24, 2009 - 12:00am

The U.S. administration has issued a stiff warning to Israel not to build in the area known as E-1, which lies between Jerusalem and the West Bank settlement of Ma'aleh Adumim. Any change in the status quo in E-1 would be "extremely damaging," even "corrosive," the message said.

Catastrophe? Israel bans 'nakba' from Arab textbook.
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Christian Science Monitor
by Ilene Prusher - July 23, 2009 - 12:00am

In the lexicon of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, few terms elicit as much energy as the word nakba – Arabic for "the catastrophe," the term Palestinians use to describe the creation of the state of Israel in 1948. This week, the term became even more of a lightning rod. Amid a rising nationalistic tide in Israel's government, Education Minister Gideon Saar moved to expunge the word from school textbooks, reversing a 2007 decision.

Hamas Shifts From Rockets to Public Relations
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The New York Times
by Ethan Bronner - July 23, 2009 - 12:00am

Seven months after Israel started a fierce three-week military campaign here to stop rockets from being fired on its southern communities, Hamas has suspended its use of rockets and shifted focus to winning support at home and abroad through cultural initiatives and public relations.

July 23rd

The Christian Science Monitor profiles the Israeli city of Tel Aviv (1). President Obama seeks reciprocity from Arab nations as well as Israel in pursuit of Mideast peace (2), while Bahrain reacts to calls from its crown prince for a new approach to Arab relations with Israel (7). BBC News tells the story of a four year old girl paralyzed in the Gaza war (5). A report released yesterday shows that the Israeli government is substantially subsidizing Jewish settlements in the West Bank (8). UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon calls on Israel to halt settlement construction (14).

Few takers for engaging Israel
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The National
by Mazen Mahdi - July 23, 2009 - 12:00am

An article last week by Bahrain’s crown prince calling on Arab countries to adopt a new approach to relations with Israel has unleashed a torrent of debate from Manama to Washington, and is testing the ability of Gulf states to leverage their growing economic clout into regional political influence. Sheikh Salman bin Hamad al Khalifa, in his article for The Washington Post, argued that for the Arab-Israeli peace process to move forward “a great deal of campaigning – patiently and repeatedly targeting all relevant parties” was needed.

Waiting for Obama to deliver as promised
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Gulf News
by George S. Hishmeh - (Opinion) July 22, 2009 - 12:00am

Six months have passed since Barack Obama settled in the White House, a precedent-setting achievement for an African-American, and yet he now seems inexplicably hesitant to follow up his initial and commendable step in resolving the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.

Tales of a Palestinian Sleuth and Real Life
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jewish Daily Forward
by Robert Rees - (Opinion) July 22, 2009 - 12:00am

The soft-spoken Welsh writer and news correspondent Matt Beynon Rees acknowledges that he never intended to make the Middle East his home. But Rees (no relation to this writer), Time Magazine’s former bureau chief in Jerusalem and now the author of three Palestinian detective novels, might be the first to admit that his own career has taken more unexpected turns and butted up against greater sudden dangers than he ever anticipated.

Status of Jerusalem
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jordan Times
by Daoud Kuttab - July 23, 2009 - 12:00am

The standoff between the Obama administration and the Netanyahu government remind many of a similar standoff between the US and Israel in the 90s when Bill Clinton was president. At the time Netanyahu insisted on Israel’s right to build Har Homa settlement on the Palestinian Jabal Abu Ghneim on the edge of Bethlehem. Today, Har Homa is a thriving settlement with thousands of Jewish Israelis residing in the complex built on expropriated Palestinian land.

Obama’s New Emphasis On Reciprocity Also Pressures Arabs
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jewish Daily Forward
by Nathan Guttman - July 23, 2009 - 12:00am

Freezing the expansion of Jewish settlements in the occupied West Bank was once seen as a unilateral Israeli obligation. But the Obama administration is now treating this as part of a package that will require concessions from Arab states, as well. An intensified and more public focus on this principle appears to be one of the byproducts of President Obama’s June 13 pledge to American Jewish communal representatives to address perceptions that he is pressuring only Israel. So far, the Arabs are resistant.

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