August 3rd

Putting the cart before the horse
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jordan Times
(Editorial) August 3, 2009 - 12:00am

Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Saud Al Faisal was absolutely right when he rejected US calls on his country and other like-minded Arab states to improve relations with Israel as a way to help restart Middle East peace talks. “The question is not what the Arab world will offer… The question really is: What will Israel give in exchange for this comprehensive offer?” Prince Saud said at a joint press conference with US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton after talks in Washington on Friday.

The path out of Palestinian irrelevance
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Daily Star
by Rami Khouri - (Opinion) August 1, 2009 - 12:00am

As if they needed another reason to wage political battle, the two leading Palestinian political groups, Fatah and Hamas, are now locked in a tug-of-war around whether Hamas will allow Fatah members in Gaza to travel to Bethlehem to attend their party’s sixth congress next Tuesday. Hamas accuses Fatah of imprisoning Hamas members unjustly, and wants them released before it allows Fatah members to go to Bethlehem.

Police Urge Indictment Of Israel's Lieberman
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Washington Post
by Linda Gradstein - August 3, 2009 - 12:00am

Israeli police recommended Sunday that the state indict Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman on charges of bribery, fraud, money laundering, witness harassment and obstruction of justice. A spokesman for the Justice Ministry said the file now moves to the state prosecutor's office and then to Attorney General Menachem Mazuz, who would have to approve the recommendation before Lieberman could be formally indicted. That process could take weeks or even months. If the foreign minister is indicted, he will have to resign, according to Israeli law.

Netanyahu: Seeking Salvation
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Foreign Policy
by M.J. Rosenberg - (Opinion) July 30, 2009 - 12:00am

Benjamin Netanyahu has a problem. The Obama administration is insisting on a settlements freeze and the Israeli prime minister, who is resisting such demands, is not getting the support he might have expected from the American pro-Israel community. Usually, when an American president makes any sort of demand on Jerusalem, pro-Israel (primarily Jewish) organizations compel Congress to pressure the president to cease and desist. It usually works, but not this time.

Egypt's peace role – and its influence – under fire
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Christian Science Monitor
by Liam Stack - July 31, 2009 - 12:00am

Since the historic 1979 Camp David Accords with Israel, Egypt has used its regional clout to broker peace in the Middle East – and curry favor with the West. With ties to both Israel and Hamas, Cairo sees a natural role for itself in helping to bring the Israeli-Palestinian conflict to a just solution. But its neutrality, motives, and, more recently, its political influence, have been challenged by other countries, calling into question its effectiveness as a peacemaker.

U.S. to Push Peace in Middle East Media Campaign
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The New York Times
by Mark Landler - August 2, 2009 - 12:00am

George J. Mitchell likes to remind people that he labored for 700 days before reaching the Good Friday accord that brought peace to Northern Ireland. So the fact that Mr. Mitchell has shuttled back and forth to the Middle East for the last 190 days without any breakthroughs, he said, does not mean that President Obama’s push for peace there is stalled.

Free Marriage Counseling
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The New York Times
by Thomas L. Friedman - (Opinion) August 1, 2009 - 12:00am

Israel and America are having one of those periodic marital spats they have had over the years, replete with “I-am-not-taking-any-more-of-your-guff” outbursts by Obama officials at American Jewish leaders, and, yes — it wouldn’t be a real Israel-U.S. dust-up without it — Israeli accusations that Jewish Obama aides are “self-hating Jews,” working out their identity crises by working over Israel. Having been to this play before, and knowing both families, I’d like to offer some free marriage counseling.

Israel Evicts Palestinians From Homes
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The New York Times
by Isabel Kershner - August 2, 2009 - 12:00am

Israeli security forces evicted two Palestinian families from their homes in East Jerusalem early Sunday after the families lost a long legal battle to remain in the contested properties, furthering a plan for Jewish settlement in the predominantly Arab area. The move, days after senior American officials visited Jerusalem to press for a settlement freeze, prompted sharp international criticism.

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