September 29th

Discontented Fatah politicos consider launching third intifada
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Amos Harel, Avi Issacharoff - September 28, 2008 - 8:00pm

In recent weeks, senior defense officials have been singing the praises of their Palestinian colleagues. After years of suspicion about the Palestinian Authority, Israeli officials are now convinced that the PA is resolved to deal with Hamas, which is threatening to take over the West Bank as it did the Gaza Strip. Palestinian officials admit to receiving assistance from Israel and the United States and have arrested hundreds of Hamas activists and closed down dozens of its charity organizations.

Bibi: I'll resume settlement activity
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
September 28, 2008 - 8:00pm

Binyamin Netanyahu will resume building in existing West Bank settlements if he is elected prime minister, the opposition leader told Walla! News on Sunday. "I don't understand why there can be natural growth in Arab neighborhoods, but not in Jewish neighborhoods," he said. "There is a difference between the plans of a family that has more children and wants to close off its balcony and the building of additional neighborhoods. There is no reason why there shouldn't be development of existing [Jewish] neighborhoods."

Two Palestinians wounded by Israeli bullets in Na''aleen Military
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Kuwait News Agency (KUNA)
September 28, 2008 - 8:00pm

Two Palestinians were wounded on Monday by Israeli bullets in the town of Na'aleen west of here. The incident occured when the Israeli troops stormed into the town and clashed with a number of Palestinians who defied the Israeli troops' storming of a mosque. Eyewitnesses said that one Palestinian was wounded in his neck while the other was hit in his hand and suffered a fractured bone. The Israeli troops have been carrying out storming operations of the town every other day and began attacking residents.

Rival Palestinian factions to hold talks in November
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Agence France Presse (AFP)
September 28, 2008 - 8:00pm

Rival Palestinian factions will meet in Cairo in November to launch an Egyptian plan aimed at forming a national consensus government, a Fateh official said on Sunday. "We expect the Palestinian national dialogue to take place on November 4 for one day, in order to end the divisions between the Palestinians," senior adviser to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, Nabil Shaath, told AFP. He said the talks would be followed a week later by a meeting of Arab foreign ministers to adopt the agreement.

Hamas releases 35 Fatah men from Gaza Strip jail
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Gulf News
September 27, 2008 - 8:00pm

Hamas security forces released 35 Fatah members from prison on Sunday as a goodwill gesture to mark the Muslim holiday of Eid Al Fitr, a Hamas official said. Mohammad Al Qidwa, who was governor of the Gaza, was among those freed. He had been in detention for three months. Hamas describes Fatah men in its custody as common criminals and largely denies it carries out politically motivated arrests. Fatah has said Hamas has arrested several hundred of its men in the Gaza Strip since the takeover and at least 150 are still in jail.

Protest raps Israeli plan to dump waste in West Bank
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Agence France Presse (AFP)
September 26, 2008 - 8:00pm

Around 300 Palestinians protested on Friday in the Occupied West Bank against what they say is an Israeli plan to reopen a controversial toxic waste dump near important underground springs. After holding Friday prayers at the site outside the village of Deir Sharaf, hundreds of demonstrators waved signs reading "Stop Dumping Settler Waste on Palestinian Lands" and "Waste Destroys the Palestinian Environment."

Israeli historian blames attack on Jewish extremists
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Agence France Presse (AFP)
September 26, 2008 - 8:00pm

Israeli historian Zeev Sternhell on Friday blamed extreme right-wing Jews for a pipe bomb attack that wounded him and accused the authorities of failing to crack down on homegrown militancy. "Clearly I am not the victim of the mob settling scores. Only the extreme right could have perpetrated this crime, either an individual or a cell," the 73-year-old writer told Israeli public radio from his hospital bed. Sternhell, an expert on European fascism and a critic of Israel's right-wing settler movement, was wounded on Thursday when a pipe bomb went off outside his house in Jerusalem.

Inside Gaza's secret smuggling tunnels, the underground route to riches - or to death
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Telegraph
by Colin Freeman - September 26, 2008 - 8:00pm

With several tonnes of the world's most war-torn soil between us, the shouts of the Palestinian smuggling gang at the top of the tunnel's 30-foot deep shaft had become almost inaudible. Not that their lead tunneller had whispered particularly encouraging words as he lowered me down. "The tunnels are very dangerous - they can easily collapse," smiled Ibrahim Abu Sazzar, 23, whose small, wiry build is just right for digging the 300 yard long passageways underneath the sandy border from the Gaza to Egypt.

Shepherd shot dead in West Bank
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from BBC News
September 27, 2008 - 8:00pm

A Palestinian shepherd has been shot dead near the city of Nablus in the occupied West Bank. Palestinian officials accused Jewish settlers of pursuing Yahya Minya, 18, from the village of Aqraba, and shooting him a number of times. Israeli police said they were looking into the incident, which comes amid a rise violence by hardline settlers. Israel's defence minister later called for a tougher stance to be taken against people who attack Palestinians. Speaking at Sunday's cabinet meeting in Jerusalem, Ehud Barak said such offenders were rarely prosecuted for their actions.

Jews and Muslims Share Holy Season in Jerusalem
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The New York Times
by Ethan Bronner - September 27, 2008 - 8:00pm

Jews are not quiet in prayer. Even when focused on the most personal of quests, as they are this season ? asking God for forgiveness for dark thoughts and unkind deeds in the past year ? they take comfort in community, chanting and swaying and dancing in circles, blowing the trumpet-like shofar, a ram?s horn.

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