May 25th

Did Israel offer to sell South Africa nuclear weapons?
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Christian Science Monitor
by Christa Case Bryant - May 24, 2010 - 12:00am

In an apparent blow to Israel’s policy of “nuclear ambiguity,” the Guardian newspaper in Britain today asserted that it had the first written proof of a robust Israeli nuclear weapons program that the country has never formally admitted to. Relying on South African documents released to American academic Sasha Polakow-Suransky, whose book "The Unspoken Alliance: Israel's Secret Relationship with Apartheid South Africa" is coming out tomorrow, the Guardian said that Israel had offered nuclear weapons of three different sizes to apartheid South Africa in 1975.

Mideast peace is a global issue
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Los Angeles Times
by Saad Hariri - May 25, 2010 - 12:00am

Previous reconciliation efforts fell on deaf ears, feeding the fanaticism that now plagues the world, says Saad Hariri. The time for arbitration may be at hand. In the fall of 1991, I was an undergraduate student at Georgetown University, following the coverage of the Madrid peace conference. In the Spanish capital, the United States had managed to gather Arabs and Israelis around a table with the aim of ending what was then half a century of war and desperation, whose first victims were the people of the region, including the people of my country, Lebanon.

Babylon & Beyond
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Los Angeles Times
by Maher Abukhater - May 24, 2010 - 12:00am

Hamas announced Monday its decision to boycott the municipal elections slated for the West Bank on July 17, citing the fact that holding elections at this time will only increase the Palestinian division. The Palestinian faction, which controls the Gaza Strip, also said that arrests and harassment of its West Bank members does not make it possible for it to participate in the elections.

U.S. to set deadline for Middle East peace
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Foreign Policy
by Barbara Slavin - May 25, 2010 - 12:00am

George Mitchell, the Obama administration's special envoy for Middle East peace, plans to set a deadline for an Israel-Palestinian agreement, applying lessons learned from his successful mediation in a previous conflict.

May 24th

Israel launches a major civil defense exercise. The LA Times interviews Palestinian MK Tibi. The Wall Street Journal interviews Israeli Pres. Peres. Hamas' financial crisis worsens. Edward Djerejian says borders are the key to peace. Israel says it will ease West Bank checkpoints. Australia expels an Israeli diplomat over the Dubai assassination. Italian grocery chains ban settlement goods. Gaza extremists torch a UN children's camp. Israeli and Palestinian negotiators agree to the principle, but not the scope, of a land swap. Palestinian nonviolent protesters are injured by the Israeli military. Ha'aretz highlights Palestinian villagers trapped by Israeli restrictions. Israel denies offering nuclear weapons to apartheid-era South Africa. Israel is retroactively "authorizing" both Palestinian and settler buildings. Hamas claims to have captured an Egyptian "spy." The PA promises to find alternative employment for Palestinian settlement workers. Hussein Shobokshi accuses Israel of preparing a mass expulsion of Palestinians in a coming conflict. ATFP presents a set of resources illustrating US support for a two state solution and its centrality to the American national interest.

Resources on the American National Security Interest in Israeli-Palestinian Peace
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Huffington Post
by Ziad Asali - May 20, 2010 - 12:00am

My colleagues and I founded the American Task Force on Palestine in 2003 with a clear, focused mission: to advocate that a negotiated end of conflict agreement that allows for two states, Israel and Palestine, to live side-by-side in peace and security is in the American national interest. Over the past seven years, we have been gratified by the development of the understanding that this is a vital national interest for our country into a clear policy focus for our government and a growing consensus within the foreign policy establishment.

Israel's Transfer Scheme
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Asharq Alawsat
by Hussein Shobokshi - May 24, 2010 - 12:00am

The eyes of the Arab world are intensely focused on fears of a possible Israeli strike against Lebanon or Syria or even Iran. But the biggest fear lies in the secret scheme that is being whispered against the West Bank. Israel continues to believe that the biggest obstacle to its expansionist policy and settlement construction activities is the Palestinian human "numbers" on the lands of the West Bank. This intense and major Palestinian presence is the "truth" that is facing and delaying Israel's expansionist designs.

PA minister promises employment for settlement workers
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ynetnews
by Ali Waked - May 23, 2010 - 12:00am

Palestinian Social Affairs Minister Majida al-Masri said Sunday that her ministry has begun preparations to absorb 6,000 female Palestinian workers currently employed in the settlements as the ban on Israeli settlement produce progresses. Al-Masri invited the workers to fill out forms in branches of the Social Affairs Ministry in order to find new jobs inside Palestinian Authority territory.

Hamas: We caught Egyptian spy in Gaza
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ynetnews
by Ali Waked - May 24, 2010 - 12:00am

Hamas' Interior Minister Fathi Hamad on Monday revealed that security forces recently arrested a senior Egyptian officer that infiltrated into the Gaza Strip in order to collect information on its residents and the Hamas government. Hamad added that the officer "was intending to perform other tasks," on which he did not elaborate.

Report: Israel legalized over 1,600 unauthorized Palestinian homes
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Chaim Levinson - May 24, 2010 - 12:00am

The Civil Administration retroactively legalized 1,611 Palestinian structures built without the necessary permits all over the territories in recent years, according to internal documents obtained by Haaretz. Meanwhile, the High Court of Justice is deliberating over a number of petitions filed by Israeli settlers demanding that the Civil Administration, which deals with non-military issues in the West Bank, retroactively legalize homes built without permits in Jewish towns there.

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