NEWS: Secularists appear to be rising in Israeli politics. Hamas and Fatah officials are expected to meet again in Egypt. PM Netanyahu meets with Quartet envoy Blair. Media mogul Murdoch apologizes for a cartoon critical of Netanyahu which many found offensive. Palestinian villagers are suing Israeli occupation authorities over military drills. Former deputy FM Beilin says Netanyahu might agree to a "provisional" Palestinian state. Some psychologists question whether Netanyahu and Pres. Obama can overcome their differences. Sources claim the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood is pressing Hamas leader Mishaal not to step down, while others say some Arab states are pushing for him to chair the PLO. Occupation forces injure a man in northern Gaza. Israeli and Palestinian officials will meet to discuss Palestinian tax revenues. COMMENTARY: Roger Cohen interviews Amos Oz. Anshel Pfeffer says he doesn't find the Netanyahu cartoon to be anti-Semitic. Aluf Benn says the foundations of Netanyahu's rule remain very strong. Barak Ravid says Yesh Atid leader Lapid may not be as opposed to compromise on Jerusalem as he tries to seem. Shlomi Eldar says Lapid should call Pres. Abbas. Gershon Baskin says good governance and peacemaking go hand-in-hand. Abdul Rahman Al-Rashed says Israel has a stake in a weakened Syria, which is almost certain to emerge from the current conflict. Omar Shaban says a new group of Palestinians is getting rich from tunnel smuggling. Gilead Sher says Israel is greatly in need of a two-state solution. Trudy Rubin says Israel's recent election didn't settle much.

Trudy Rubin: Little settled by Israeli vote
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Philadelphia Inquirer
by Trudy Rubin - (Opinion) January 29, 2013 - 1:00am

Here's a pop quiz for those who have been too busy to notice the surprising results of Tuesday's Israeli election: Was the key issue (1) Prime Minister Benjamin "Bibi" Netanyahu's testy relationship with President Barack Obama; (2) whether Israel should bomb Iran's nuclear sites; or (3) whether to revive the mummified peace process?

Time has come for 2 states
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ynetnews
by Gilead Sher - (Opinion) January 29, 2013 - 1:00am

In about a month and a half Israel's 33rd government will be sworn in, and, regardless of the make-up of the next coalition, it must succeed in determining the country's borders.

New Class of Palestinians Get Rich On Gaza Tunnel Trade
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Al-Monitor
by Omar Shaban - (Opinion) January 28, 2013 - 1:00am

One of the challenges for reconciliation between Hamas and the Palestinian Authority (PA) is to reaccommodate 55,000 PA employees — who had been asked to refuse to work with the Hamas government — in the Gaza Strip.  Another important challenge is how to assimilate hundreds of newly rich Palestinians who have amassed vast fortunes from illegal trade as well as legal economic activities, and re-incorporate hundreds who had halted economic activity because of the blockade. The tunnels are not new

The role of Israel in Syria
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Arab News
by Abdul Rahman Al-Rashed - (Opinion) January 29, 2013 - 1:00am

THE war in Syria is also an Israeli concern and its results may be as dangerous as the October 1973 war. The fall of Bashar Assad’s regime can change the map and may perhaps threaten the existing balance of power formulated after the disengagement agreement signed by President Hafez Assad and Israel under Henry Kissinger’s auspices during the October war.

Encountering Peace: Good governments make peace
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
by Gershon Baskin - (Opinion) January 28, 2013 - 1:00am

The most important thing any government can provide for its people is peace. Peace is the precondition for everything else. Economic growth, welfare for those in need, good education for all, culture, infrastructure, opportunity and hope are all attainable, if there is peace. Israel is the land of promise, the land of great potential. Amazing things have been achieved here over the past 65 years under very difficult circumstances. The major promise that has not been fulfilled is peace.

Yair Lapid Should Call Abu Mazen
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Al-Monitor
by Shlomi Eldar - (Opinion) January 28, 2013 - 1:00am

Below is the transcript of a phone call that has not yet taken place: “Hello?” “Hello Mr. Lapid, PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas speaking.” “Who?” “Mahmoud Abbas, Abu Mazen.” “Ah-ha, shalom.” “Apropos of peace, do you feel like dropping by me for coffee? I am here in Ramallah, a 50-minute ride from Tel Aviv.” “Give me a minute to check …”

Will Yair Lapid divide Jerusalem?
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Barak Ravid - (Opinion) January 28, 2013 - 1:00am

Throughout his election campaign Yair Lapid insisted on his adamant opposition to the partition of Jerusalem under any future peace agreement with the Palestinians. Back in February 2012, when he first began communicating with potential voters, he declared that Jerusalem "belongs to the people of Israel and no one else." Months later, giving a campaign speech in the West Bank city of Ariel in October 2012, he underlined the message:

In the end we're left with Netanyahu
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Aluf Benn - (Opinion) January 28, 2013 - 1:00am

The elections are over, the votes have been counted, the banners folded away. Benjamin Netanyahu will continue as prime minister. His messages have changed slightly. During the campaign, Netanyahu wanted "a strong prime minister and a big party." Now he talks about "a broad and stable government." All the rest is as it was. It's the same Bibi, with the same worldview, the same experience and the same objectives.

Four reasons why U.K. cartoon of Netanyahu isn't anti-Semitic in any way
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Anshel Pfeffer - (Opinion) January 28, 2013 - 1:00am

A cartoon that appeared in this London's Sunday Times this week depicting Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu building a wall with blood-red colored cement, trapping in between the bricks Palestinian-looking figures, is causing the latest is-it-or-is-it-not-anti-Semitism furor.

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