May 27th

Hamas's Rationalism!
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Asharq Alawsat
by Tariq Alhomayed - May 26, 2009 - 12:00am

After meeting Hamas chief Khalid Mishal in Damascus, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said that he noticed that the movement is taking "a more realistic evaluation of the situation" while also confirming the need to maintain the current calm in Gaza. In other words the Russian Minister hopes that Hamas will continue not to fire rockets into Israel from the Gaza Strip, establishing a clam that has not been witnessed in Gaza for a long time. Was there anything in the Russian official's statement to cause surprise?

Excuses from Israel grow ever more tiresome
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The National
May 26, 2009 - 12:00am

Benjamin Netanyahu waited until he returned to Israel to tell the truth. Free from the strictures of Washington, the Israeli prime minister has let the world know how intransigent his government intends to be in the peace process. We are told that there will be no halt to the construction of settlements. In fact, there appears to be little inclination on the part of the Israeli leadership for any progress on the peace process.

Rival Livni is vital to Netanyahu, say analysts
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The National
by Jonathan Cook - May 26, 2009 - 12:00am

Pressure is mounting on Benjamin Netanyahu, the Israeli prime minister, to bring the opposition leader Tzipi Livni into the government after last week’s difficult meeting with the US president, according to senior analysts. Yaron Ezrahi, a political science professor at Hebrew University in Jerusalem, said Mr Netanyahu now understood that he faced a stark choice between clashing with the White House and ditching the far-right parties in his coalition.

Exiting Failed Wars
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Dar Al-Hayat
May 26, 2009 - 12:00am

The Hebrew press is nearly unanimous that the meeting of President Barack Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in the White House was a failure. Its failure resulted from two contradictory visions of the struggle in the Middle East. Obama set down a comprehensive view of how to save the United States from two failed wars, in Iraq and Afghanistan. This can only take place in cooperation with Arab countries, as well as Pakistan and Iran.

Israel's 'emotions' are proving an obstacle to a settlement
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Daily Star
by Dominique Moïsi - May 27, 2009 - 12:00am

"It is reasonable to believe in miracles," David Ben-Gurion, the first prime minister of Israel, once said. Today's Israelis do not seem to believe in miracles. Instead, more than ever before they are obsessed by nightmares, foremost among them, the prospect of a nuclear Iran.

Palestinians still want peace
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from
May 27, 2009 - 12:00am

PALESTINIAN president Mahmud Abbas on Tuesday stressed his willingness to reach a peace agreement with Israel, on the eve of a visit to Washington where he hopes to obtain support for the stalled Middle East peace process.  

Avoiding two states, getting one state
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Jewish Telegraphic Agency (JTA)
by Ron Kampeas - May 26, 2009 - 12:00am

Over at her personal blog, War and Piece, Foreign Policy's Laura Rozen calls the latest New York Review of Books piece by Robert Malley and Hussein Agha on the prospects of Israeli and Palestinian peace "dangerous." She doesn't explain why but -- without having spoken with her -- I'll venture agreement with her, and not in a way that diminishes Malley or Agha*.

Canada urges halt to Israeli settlements
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from
May 27, 2009 - 12:00am

Ottawa trod yesterday into the controversy over whether Israel should allow its West Bank settlements to grow, saying that expansion is illegal and would hurt Middle East peace efforts. On the weekend, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu rejected a call from U.S. President Barack Obama for a total freeze on settlement building, telling his cabinet that a total stop is not justified.

Crippling the Palestinian Cause
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The New York Times
by Dan Williams - May 26, 2009 - 12:00am

Abu Fadi, a police officer loyal to Mahmoud Abbas, the Palestinian president, stood up among the roses and lemons in a Gaza garden and pulled down his trousers. Scars on each knee and ankle and one at his right hip attested to a vicious punishment. He said the wounds were caused by gunmen from Hamas, the Islamic party that rules the sandy coastal enclave and fiercely opposes the Abbas government, which governs the West Bank. The masked men came to his house, told him he was a spy for Israel, shot him nine times from less than a meter away and left him in a pool of blood on his driveway.

Amos Elon’s Warning on Israel’s Settlements
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The New York Times
by Robert Mackey - May 26, 2009 - 12:00am

An image from the Web site of the Israeli settlement of Nokdim on the West Bank, where Israel’s Foreign Minister lives. In an essay trying to answer the question, “Israelis & Palestinians: What Went Wrong?” published in The New York Review of Books in 2002, Amos Elon, the Israeli journalist and historian who died on Monday, began with this anecdote:

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