NEWS: Palestinians are seeking international support for renewed efforts at greater recognition at the UN. Egypt will reportedly reopen its border crossing with Gaza, as Palestinians are stranded waiting to return. Israel is engaged in an unprecedented debate about the prospect of war with Iran. DM Barak is delaying approval of full university status recognition for a school in an Israeli settlement. The Israeli Defense Ministry asks for several billion additional shekels for 2013. An Israeli human rights group calls on authorities to reopen investigations of police misconduct against Palestinians in occupied East Jerusalem. Israel is moving forward with plans to evict 1500 Palestinians in the occupied West Bank to make way for a military firing range. Palestinians brace for power cuts as Israel's electricity company threatens to cut supplies due to unpaid debts. Palestine opens a consulate in the Dominican Republic. Pres. Morsy is reportedly considering asking for amendments to the peace treaty with Israel, particularly regarding Egyptian sovereignty in the Sinai Peninsula. A Palestinian male ballet dancer is challenging cultural expectations. Israeli diplomats say South Africa's boycott of settlement products, including those from occupied East Jerusalem, amounts to a boycott of Israel itself. Avi Dichter resigns from the Knesset to become Minister of Home Front Defense. Organizations in the United States launch a campaign to prevent Hezbollah and other designated foreign terrorist organizations from using social media such as YouTube and Twitter. Palestinian refugees who fled Syria to Lebanon are mired in a bureaucratic limbo. Palestinians are increasingly concerned about aggressive Israeli moves in “Area C." COMMENTARY: ATFP Pres. Ziad Asali says Palestinian culture should be fairly evaluated. The New York Times says it's irresponsible for Israel to be talking about war with Iran when diplomacy is still viable and ongoing. Avi Issacharoff says Gazans are hoping that Egypt will ease its clampdown on smuggling tunnels. Alex Fishman says the shakeup at the top of the Egyptian military doesn't bode well for relations with Israel. J.J. Goldberg says Pres. Obama should welcome Palestinian moves for UN nonmember observer state status, but with certain conditions. Ben Caspit says Israeli leaders should stop chattering about attacking Iranian nuclear facilities and decide whether to do it or not. Gershom Gorenberg says few Israelis appreciate the true value of the effectiveness of Palestinian security forces in the West Bank. Mohamed Fadel Fahmy says no one really knows what happened in the Sinai attack against Egyptian forces. Aaron David Miller says Israel will continue to have its state but, under the current circumstances, Palestinians, other Arabs and Iran will not allow them to " completely enjoy it."

Palestinians Fear New Israeli Moves In West Bank
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from National Public Radio (NPR)
by Lourdes Garcia-Navarro - August 14, 2012 - 12:00am

Peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians have been frozen for almost two years. But Palestinians say that doesn't mean events aren't happening on the ground. Recently, the Israeli military issued orders calling for evacuation and demolition of nearly a dozen Palestinian communities in the occupied West Bank. Palestinians see this as evidence of Israeli plans to annex the territory, though Israel denies this.

Palestinians from Syria mired in bureaucratic limbo
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Daily Star
by Mohammed Zaatari - August 14, 2012 - 12:00am

After escaping the violence in Syria, Palestinian refugees who recently arrived in Lebanon are encountering a bureaucratic nightmare as they struggle to obtain basic housing and health care. More than 300 Palestinian refugee families have fled camps in Syria to the homes of relatives in the refugee camps of Ain al-Hilweh and Mieh Mieh, as well as the city of Sidon. The communities hosting the refugees are unable to accommodate the steady tide of newcomers from Syria, especially as little outside aid is being funneled to help them.

Driving Hezbollah Off Social Media
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jewish Daily Forward
by Nathan Guttman - August 13, 2012 - 12:00am

A campaign to drive designated terror organizations off social media platforms is proving effective on some fronts in preventing Hezbollah from reaching out to members and supporters through the Web. Several key social media sites, including Facebook, agreed recently to delete accounts and applications belonging to the Lebanon-based group and its TV station, Al-Manar, which have both been designated by the United States as terror groups.

Another Look at Palestinian Culture
In Print by Ziad Asali - The Huffington Post (Opinion) - August 9, 2012 - 12:00am

Given the current conversation about issue of Palestinian culture and its relationship to politics and economics, I feel it's appropriate for me to add my own Palestinian-American perspective.

Palestinian culture is not about failure
In Print by Ziad Asali - The Daily Star (Opinion) - August 14, 2012 - 12:00am

Given the current conversation about issue of Palestinian culture and its relationship to politics and economics, I feel it is appropriate for me to add my own Palestinian-American perspective.

Dichter quits Knesset to take home front defense ministerial position
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Jewish Telegraphic Agency (JTA)
August 14, 2012 - 12:00am

Israeli lawmaker Avi Dichter resigned from the Kadima Party and the Knesset in order to join the government as minister of home front defense. Dichter reportedly sent Knesset Speaker Reuven Rivlin his resignation on Tuesday after being offered the position Monday night during a meeting with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak. He will replace Matan Vilnai, who on Monday became Israel's ambassador to China.

Jerusalem accuses South Africa of boycotting Israel
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
by Herb Keinon - August 13, 2012 - 12:00am

Ambassador to South Africa Dov Segev-Steinberg will ask Pretoria for clarifications regarding what is viewed in Jerusalem as nothing less than a South African call for a boycott of Israel, diplomatic sources said on Monday.

Preserving Israel's Uncertain Status Quo
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The New York Times
by Aaron David Miller - (Opinion) August 14, 2012 - 12:00am

If someone asked me to sum up in a sentence where Israel will be a decade from now, I’d paraphrase Dickens: It will be neither the best nor worst of times. The Israelis will prosper and keep their state, but the Arabs and Iranians will never let them completely enjoy it.

First Palestinian male ballet dancer battles prejudices
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from BBC World News
by Sylvia Smith - August 10, 2012 - 12:00am

As the young ballet dancer stretches backwards lifting his leg over the barre and rising up on to demi-pointe, beads of sweat appear on his forehead. The two hour-long routine takes place daily in south London in a practice studio surrounded by mirrors. The practice is so demanding that it would break the will, not to mention the physical strength, of anyone less passionate about dance. But it is not just the gruelling requirements of ballet that this young dancer has to contend with but also entrenched cultural prejudices.

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