NEWS: Fatah holds its first rally in Gaza in years, which some see as more evidence of potential Palestinian national reconciliation. An Israeli and a Palestinian chef co-author a book on Jerusalem food. Former Shin Bet chief Diskin harshly criticizes PM Netanyahu's attitudes towards Iran. Two documentaries on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict are shortlisted for this year's Academy Awards. Palestinian officials say the PA fiscal crisis may make joining more UN and multilateral agencies prohibitively costly. Pres. Abbas says Palestinians need Arab financial support, which has been pledged but not delivered. Abbas authorizes PA agencies to operate under the rubric of the "State of Palestine" on all official documents. Reports suggest the Israeli government may be delaying highly controversial E1 settlement construction plans. Palestinian refugees trying to flee the war in Syria are being charged hefty visa fees at the Lebanese border. COMMENTARY: Ziad Asali and Ghaith al-Omari say the international community needs to move quickly to salvage the Palestinian institution-building program. Zbigniew Brzezinski says it would make no sense for the United States to attack Iran. Yoel Marcus says if Pres. Peres really believes in his strong disagreement with Israel's policies towards the Palestinians, he should resign. Sawsan Zaher says the Israeli government is engaged in a cover-up of information clearing MK Zoabi from any wrongdoing in the Gaza flotilla affair. The Jerusalem Post says Israel's diplomats can't be expected to defend policies that lack adequate explanation. Ben Caspit says Israeli society is acting recklessly on Jerusalem. Akiva Eldar says demographics suggest a continued rise of Israel's right-wing parties. Adnan Abu Amer says it's only a matter of time before there is another Gaza war. Shlomi Eldar strongly criticizes Hamas' efforts to ban journalists in Gaza from working with any Israeli media outlets. Alan Berger says the US should help Israelis make peace with the Palestinians, even if that means meddling in their elections. Alan Philps says Israel's slide to the extreme right is gravely endangering the country.

Israel's paranoid slide to the right pushes it towards a cliff
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The National
by Alan Philps - (Opinion) January 4, 2013 - 1:00am

  An Israeli election, such as is being held on January 22, would normally be heralded by alarmist headlines proclaiming "last chance for peace" or "make or break". This election, however, is being passed over almost in silence.

Obama should meddle in Israel’s election
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Boston Globe
by Alan Berger - (Opinion) January 4, 2013 - 1:00am


Hamas Imposes a Media Blackout Throughout Gaza Strip
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Al-Monitor
by Shlomi Eldar - (Opinion) January 3, 2013 - 1:00am

  The most irritating thing about the Hamas government’s decision to ban Palestinian journalists in Gaza from working for Israeli media outlets is what the decision implies: The journalists have been turned into collaborators, at least from the perspective of the Palestinian public.

Next Gaza War a Matter Of When, Not If
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Al-Monitor
by Adnan Abu Amer - (Opinion) January 3, 2013 - 1:00am

  The recent Israeli war on Gaza ended with an urgent cease-fire between Israel and Hamas, after the two sides failed to completely achieve their objectives.

Demography Favors Rise of Israel's Right
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Al-Monitor
by Akiva Eldar - (Opinion) January 3, 2013 - 1:00am


Have we gone crazy?
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
by Ben Caspit - (Opinion) January 3, 2013 - 1:00am

Israel is going nuts.

Diplomatic criticism
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
(Editorial) January 3, 2013 - 1:00am

Israeli ambassadors from around the world were in Jerusalem this week for their annual end-of-year meeting.It is a time for diplomats to swap experiences with peers, meet with top government officials and get caught up on internal Foreign Ministry politics.

Cover-up led to anti-Zoabi campaign
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ynetnews
by Sawsan Zaher - (Opinion) January 4, 2013 - 1:00am

The request to disqualify Balad MK Hanin Zoabi from running in the elections for the 19th Knesset raises serious questions regarding the easiness in which an Arab Knesset member can be delegitimized and demonized – to the point where she is branded a terrorist.

President Peres - resign
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Yoel Marcus - (Opinion) January 4, 2013 - 1:00am


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