April 27th

The two things we know about a Middle East in flux, and what they mean for Israel
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Foreign Policy
by David Rothkopf - (Blog) April 26, 2011 - 12:00am

A Pew Poll released this week shows that more than half of all Egyptians would like to see the peace treaty with Israel annulled. Almost two-thirds indicated that they thought that the country's laws should be based on the Koran and about half felt it was "very important" that religious parties be part of the next government. It is further evidence that Egypt's push for democracy has been fueled as much by its decades-long conservative shift as it has been by its decades long exploitation by the Mubarak regime.

April 26th

Activists are preparing another Gaza flotilla, and Turkey warns Israel against repeating “the mistake” of last year. Israeli Amb. Oren praises the US-Israel alliance, but Stephen Walt disagrees, and Aluf Benn strikes a middle ground. The PA cabinet calls for an end to settlement activity. Palestinian university employees go on strike. International activists help with the harvest on Gaza’s border. Ha’aretz says the shooting of settlers by Palestinian police must be considered a mistake until proven otherwise, and Palestinians are investigating the incident. A.B. Yehoshua asks why the conflict cannot be resolved. Amir Oren says Pres. Obama can learn from Egypt’s peace treaty with Israel. The Palestinian leadership is trying to avoid a confrontation with Israel. Obama urges Turkey to improve relations with Israel. A Hamas delegation travels to Cairo. A new poll suggests many Egyptians would support annulling the treaty with Israel. Gershon Baskin warns that imposed solutions will not work. Pres. Peres gives Obama a letter from convicted spy Jonathan Pollard. Hassan Barari says the Palestinians don’t have a peace partner in Netanyahu. The VOA interviews Palestinian businessman Munib Al Masri.

Turkey warns Israel against repeating 'flotilla mistake'
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ynetnews
April 26, 2011 - 12:00am

Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu warned Israel against repeating "the same mistake" ahead of the Gaza-bound flotilla scheduled to set sail next month. In an interview with the Sydney Morning Herald, Davutoglu added that "It is Israel's responsibility not to implement (a blockade) against Gaza. A fact-finding mission of the UN declared that this … is illegal." The Turkish foreign minister further added: ''In the flotilla last year, people were killed 72 miles (116 kilometres) from the coast, so this was in international waters. The Mediterranean does not belong to any nation.''

Obama urges Erdogan to improve relations with Israel
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ynetnews
April 26, 2011 - 12:00am

US President Barack Obama spoke to Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Monday and expressed his hope that Turkey and Israel will find opportunities to improve their relations in the interest of regional stability. The White House issued a statement saying the two leaders discussed recent developments in the Middle East. According to the statement Obama and Erdogan expressed their deep concern about the Syrian government’s unacceptable use of violence against its own people.

Trouble brewing between Palestinians and Israelis
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Amos Harel, Avi Issacharoff - April 26, 2011 - 12:00am

As late as 5 A.M. Sunday, a Givati Brigade battalion still had guards stationed at the entrance to Nablus to keep Jews seeking to pray at Joseph's Tomb from approaching the area without making arrangements first. About half an hour after the forces left, a group of Hasidim broke into the city, which led to the incident that ended in the killing of Ben-Yosef Livnat by a Palestinian policeman.

'Hamas delegation is in Cairo to discuss Schalit'
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
April 26, 2011 - 12:00am

A Hamas delegation traveled to Cairo on Tuesday in order to discuss the release of captive IDF soldier Gilad Schalit, Israel Radio reported. A Palestnian source told Israel Radio that the possible reconciliation between Hamas and Fatah will be the main topic of discussion at the meeting, but Schalit is also on the agenda. The delegation reportedly includes one of Hamas's leaders, Mahmoud Zahar, as well as two members of the negotiating team for Schalit, Halil el Haya and Nizar Awdallah.

Poll: Most Egyptians favor annulling peace with Israel
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
by Lahav Harkov - April 26, 2011 - 12:00am

Most Egyptians are in favor of annulling a peace treaty with Israel, according to a Pew Research Center poll released on Monday. The US-based think tank polled 1,000 adults throughout Egypt between March 24 and April 7, finding that only 36 percent would maintain peace. The percentage of Egyptians who support annulling the treaty (54%) does not vary amongst those who sympathize with Islamic fundamentalists and those who do not. However, those with lower incomes are less likely to support the peace with Israel than those with higher incomes.

What Obama can learn from Israel's peace with Egypt
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Amir Oren - (Opinion) April 26, 2011 - 12:00am

He was present during the secret talks between Richard Nixon, Golda Meir, Henry Kissinger and Yitzhak Rabin, before and after the Yom Kippur War. He witnessed Israel's plight in October 1973, when it desperately needed military equipment and a cease-fire even at the price of an Egyptian victory. He heard from Kissinger that Jordan's King Hussein was prepared to accept the Allon Plan but only if "the mosques and another street" in Jerusalem were thrown in. In November 2008, immediately after Barack Obama was elected U.S.

Encountering Peace: Imposed peace plans will not work
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
by Gershon Baskin - (Opinion) April 25, 2011 - 12:00am

First came the Caesarea conferences on Israel’s economic policies and plans run by the Israel Democracy Institute where ministers and Bank of Israel officials came to deliver high-profile speeches on the future of our economic welfare. Then came the Herzliya conferences to which prime ministers, foreign ministers, chiefs of staff and others leaders from the security military establishment presented their views and policy plans.

Why the Israeli-Palestinian conflict refuses to be resolved
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by A.B. Yehoshua - (Opinion) April 26, 2011 - 12:00am

The question in the headline should ostensibly be directed to a Middle East expert, a political scientist, or even a foreign historian, not a writer whose expertise is his imagination. But because the question is a real one that is painful to everyone in the region regardless of his nationality, I will try to propose an answer.

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