NEWS: Israeli and Palestinian leaders react to the independence of South Sudan. There is a “balance of terror” between Israel and Hezbollah. PLO leaders urge the US to support a UN statehood initiative. More disturbing details emerge about the killing of a Palestinian by occupation troops in Nablus. PM Netanyahu defends the new Israeli anti-boycott law. Israel approves completion of a “museum of tolerance” built on a Muslim graveyard. Pres. Abbas reiterates he is determined to approach the UN in September, as Palestinians continue to weigh their options and chances of success. The Arab League says it will present a Palestinian statehood bid to the UN. COMMENTARY: Gideon Levy says Israelis must fight against the new boycott law and Nechama Duek calls it “undemocratic and immoral,” but Eliyahu Stone says it lets Israel defend itself. Eitan Grossman explains why Israelis and Palestinians will march together for peace. JJ Goldberg says the right is rewriting politics in both Israel and the US. George Hishmeh says Palestine is already a reality. Daoud Kuttab outlines the hardships of crossing between Jordan and the occupied West Bank. Laura Rozen looks at the failure of the recent Quartet meeting. Rachel Shabi investigates the frustration and impatience of Palestinian youths under occupation.

Arabs to seek full Palestine upgrade at U.N.
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Reuters
July 14, 2011 - 12:00am

The Arab League will apply to upgrade the Palestinians to full member status at the United Nations, according to a draft statement from a league meeting in Qatar on Thursday. "It was decided to go to the United Nations to request the recognition of the state of Palestine with East Jerusalem as its capital and to move ahead and request a full membership," said the communique, a copy of which was obtained by Reuters.

Palestine Lost
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Foreign Policy
by Rachel Shabi - (Opinion) July 13, 2011 - 12:00am

Promises were made, and it looks like they'll be broken. U.S. President Barack Obama said he believed a Palestinian state could be created by September 2011. Speaking to the U.N. General Assembly in September 2010, he laid down a challenge to formulate an agreement that would make it a reality. That same deadline was set by Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad for his state-building plan, which was intended to create the institutions for a viable Palestinian state.

Palestinian leaders weigh U.N. options
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from United Press International (UPI)
by Rema Rahman - July 13, 2011 - 12:00am

A PLO leader said Palestinians will consider bypassing the U.N. Security Council and going directly to the General Assembly when it requests admission to the United Nations in September. The option, if accepted, would allow the Palestinians to become a non-member state in the United Nations. For full recognition, leaders are also considering acceptance by the Security Council first, which could postpone the process.

Quartet reset? International peacemakers seemingly stumped on Middle East
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Yahoo News
by Laura Rozen - (Opinion) July 14, 2011 - 12:00am

For the small clique that comprises the world's most senior statesmen and -women, the Monday night meal hosted by Hillary Clinton to review efforts to get the Israelis and Palestinians back to the peace table might have been expected to follow the usual script: familiar colleagues, familiar talking points, followed by the expected issuing of a joint statement expressing international consensus on the urgent need for resumed negotiations. Blah blah blah blah. Or so one might have thought.

Jordan crossing heats up
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jordan Times
by Daoud Kuttab - (Opinion) July 14, 2011 - 12:00am

The religious men and women patiently clutching their water jugs on July 10, waiting in line at the Israeli border crossing looked like the average Palestinian. They had been to Mecca for Umra, the lesser pilgrimage to the Muslim holy places. What was different in this group of Palestinians was that they were holding Israeli passports. The individuals, mostly from the Naqab area, looked tired and exhausted. They had arrived the day before at about 9:00pm, but were denied entry by the Israelis.

Palestinians more determined to approach UN for vote
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Xinhua
by Fares Akram and Emad Drimly - July 13, 2011 - 12:00am

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas reiterated Wednesday that the Palestinians will seek recognition of their state at the United Nations if international efforts failed to resume peace talks with Israel. Abbas said when meeting United Arab Emirates' (UAE) ambassador in the West Bank city of Ramallah that Israel refuses to commit itself to the references of the peace process or stop building Jewish settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem.

Palestine is a reality
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Gulf News
by George S. Hishmeh - (Opinion) July 14, 2011 - 12:00am

Poor Michele Bachmann! The US Republican representative and presidential hopeful has been the target of merciless criticism and ridicule for her slip-up in explaining her sponsorship of a controversial pro-Israel Congressional resolution. The slip-up, a seemingly ‘pro-Palestinian tweet’, was caught by, the popular news website, when Bachmann wrote explaining her adoption of the House measure, saying, “I’m proud to co-sponsor HRes 268, coming to the floor [last Thursday] night,’ stressing, “The resolution supports peace negotiations between Israel and Palestine [italics added].”

Israel gives go-ahead to museum opposed by Muslims
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Statesman
by Amy Teibel - July 13, 2011 - 12:00am

The Israeli government has approved a Jewish group's plan to build a museum over a centuries-old Muslim graveyard in Jerusalem, an official confirmed Wednesday, in the final go-ahead for a project delayed for years by Muslim opposition. The bitter wrangle over construction of the Museum of Tolerance reflects the explosive potential of religion-based disputes in Jerusalem, where Jews and Muslims often play down the other side's historical ties to the city. The museum, which is meant to promote coexistence, is a project of a U.S.-based Jewish group, the Simon Wiesenthal Center.

Two Revolutions and the Crises They Created
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Forward
by J.J. Goldberg - (Editorial) July 14, 2011 - 12:00am

If it feels as though we’re living through strange, frightening times, that’s because we are. The planet is experiencing a wrenching atmospheric change, what with biblical-scale storms and droughts, disappearing polar ice caps, rising oceans and endangered crop cycles. The nations, particularly in the 1.5 billion-strong Muslim world, are undergoing a collective nervous breakdown that spills over into the West and strains the moorings of the democratic Enlightenment. The economy teeters like a table that’s lost a leg.

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