July 18th

Freed Prisoners Vow To Fight Israel
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Associated Press
July 18, 2008 - 3:24pm

Five militants who were freed as part of a prisoner swap with Israel prayed Thursday at a slain Hizbollah military commander's grave, pledging to follow in his footsteps and continue fighting Israel. Wearing military fatigues, the five men walked down a red carpet laid out for them outside Imad Mughniyeh's burial spot at a cemetery south of Beirut. They laid wreaths and gave a military salute as supporters showered them with rice.

U.s. Plans Peace Talks With Israelis, Palestinians
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Reuters
by Sue Pleming, Tabassum Zakaria - July 18, 2008 - 3:23pm

Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice plans to host peace talks in Washington with Israeli and Palestinian negotiators on July 30, Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat said on Thursday. Rice met a Palestinian delegation in Washington on Wednesday and offered to host the three-way meeting between herself, chief Palestinian negotiator Ahmed Qurie and his Israeli partner, Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni, Erekat said.

Israel Cancels Decision To Close West Bank Shopping Centre
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Deutsche Presse Agentur
July 18, 2008 - 3:22pm

The Israeli military cancelled Thursday an earlier decision to shut down the West Bank's largest shopping centre, located in the northern city of Nablus, its owners said. The cancellation, however, did not affect the assets of one company, which owns several of the shops and businesses in what is known as Nablus Mall. The Nablus Mall was built four years ago through the cooperation of several Palestinian companies and entrepreneurs and most of its 80 shops and business offices were either sold or leased.

A West Bank Town’s Fight To Survive
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Nation
by Neve Gordon - July 18, 2008 - 3:19pm

"Jerusalem bulldozer 'terrorist' kills 3 in rampage," read the headline of a CNN article describing the recent attack of a Palestinian construction worker that left three Israelis dead and scores wounded. A Google news search indicates that the brutal assault was mentioned in 3,525 news articles. USA Today, the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, BBC, Fox News and Al Jazeera as well as all the other major media outlets covered the incident.

Ruling Palestine Ii: The West Bank Model?
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from International Crisis Group
July 18, 2008 - 3:14pm

In June 2007, as Hamas took control of Gaza and a new government was formed in the West Bank, observers ventured two scenarios. The West Bank might become a model, whose economic revival and improved relations with Israel and the wider world contrasted with Gaza’s sorry fate; or, given continued occupation and the structural dysfunctionality of the Palestinian Authority (PA), it would see little progress. Both were wrong. Under Salam Fayyad’s competent leadership, it has made gains, particularly in law and order.

Shebaa Farms Can Create Momentum For Peace
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Common Ground News Service
by Cesar Chelala - July 18, 2008 - 3:13pm

Shebaa Farms is a sliver of land located in the border area between Israel, Lebanon and Syria. It can play an important role, much larger than its size. An agreement on that area – located some 16 square miles on the western slopes of the Hermon Mountain range – can help create a much-needed momentum for peace in the region.

In Israel, A Nation Mourns With The Families Of Slain Soldiers
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Christian Science Monitor
by Ilene Prusher - July 18, 2008 - 3:12pm

For Israelis, their Second Lebanon War, fought in summer 2006, came to a close only on Thursday, when the two soldiers whose capture became the cause for launching the conflict were laid to rest before their families and the eyes of a solemn nation.

Unease Over West Bank Raids
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Washington Post
by Griff Witte - July 18, 2008 - 3:10pm

When Faris Abu Hasan was deciding where to send his two young daughters to school, one factor stood out above all others: test scores. So Abu Hasan opted against the beleaguered local government school, and chose instead the Islamic Basic School for Girls, where the classes were small and the teachers offered individual attention in math, science, history and English. "I wanted them to go to the best school in Nablus. And this is the best school in Nablus," said Abu Hasan, a lawyer.

July 17th

Poll: 55% Of American Jews See Mideast Peace As 'core' U.s. Interest
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Shmuel Rosner - July 17, 2008 - 3:26pm

Can you imagine a J Street poll suggesting that most American Jews oppose a vigorous Israeli-Palestinian peace process? Can you imagine such a poll asserting that American Jews oppose any American pressure on Israel to make compromises? If you can't, this is your lucky day. J Street just released a public opinion pollwith no such surprises. Not if you read the press releases accompanying it. American Jews, the poll says, want peace, readily support American pressure, and believe that Middle East peace is "a core American interest" (55 percent).

Israeli Attacks Backfire, Unite Hamas, Fatah
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Middle East Times
by Mel Frykberg - July 17, 2008 - 3:24pm

During the last few weeks Israeli troops have raided and closed down mosques, medical centers, charities, soup kitchens and shopping malls in Nablus, confiscating computers and buses, and causing extensive damage, as they target Hamas-linked institutions which they claim are "supporting terrorism," in a bid to stem the growing influence the Islamic organization has over the West Bank.

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