Haaretz poll: 64 percent of Israelis back two-state solution
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Akiva Eldar - (Analysis) June 17, 2009 - 12:00am

Figures close politically to Benjamin Netanyahu, and even Labor Party leaders, were worried that the prime minister's fear of U.S. President Barack Obama would overcome his terror of the settlers and force the words "settlement freeze" from his mouth. Here is what senior labor figure Social Affairs Minister Isaac Herzog said two weeks ago at a Knesset hearing on the illegal outposts: "There are components that certainly can be authorized or for which a solution can be found through negotiations," adding, "I absolutely believe in the need for natural growth."

Netanyahu Feels the Heat
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Washington Post
by Harold Meyerson - (Opinion) June 17, 2009 - 12:00am

Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has at last acknowledged, with caveats, the need to establish a Palestinian state. Actually, Netanyahu's Palestine is primarily caveats, with a dash of state thrown in for appearances' sake. In his speech last Sunday, the prime minister failed to address the continual growth of Israeli settlements on the occupied West Bank, where close to 300,000 Israeli settlers live. The Palestine that Netanyahu envisions must steadily shrink to accommodate the growing number of Israeli settlers in its midst. It would be a collection of barely contiguous cantons.

America's Vague Praise for Netanyahu
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Dar Al-Hayat
by Randa Takieddine - (Opinion) June 17, 2009 - 12:00am

Some believe that the description by US President Barack Obama of Netanyahu’s speech as a step forward is because no one in the West confronts Israel openly. It is the state of Holocaust victims and everyone applauds a bad speech with nothing new in it except the position of Benjamin Netanyahu and his extremist, right-wing government. Others believe that Obama’s description of Netanyahu’s speech as a step forward represents an American welcome that precedes real pressure on Israel to enter negotiations.

Netanyahu's message is there will be no peace
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by David Grossman - June 17, 2009 - 12:00am

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's speech was indeed, as it has been decribed, the speech of our lives. Our bogged-down, hopeless lives.

Debating, Again, the Founding of Israel
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jewish Daily Forward
by Nathan Guttman - June 17, 2009 - 12:00am

As the Obama administration deepens its outreach to the Muslim and Arab world, it faces the difficult task of countering Holocaust denial without reinforcing an increasingly popular anti-Zionist narrative that ties the legitimacy of the State of Israel to Jewish suffering in Europe. And as discussion of the Holocaust becomes more widespread, so does the argument heard from Tehran to Gaza that while Europeans were responsible for atrocities against Jews, it is the Palestinians who are paying the price.

Israeli envoy hopeful for solution on settlements
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Associated Press
by Aron Heller - June 16, 2009 - 12:00am

Israel's incoming ambassador to the United States said Tuesday he was confident that his government will soon reach an agreement with Washington to allow some construction in West Bank settlements. President Barack Obama, seeking to restart Mideast peace talks, has called on Israel to halt all construction on captured lands claimed by the Palestinians. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says existing settlements must be permitted to expand to accommodate natural growth in the populations.

Right-wing group plans 30 new outposts
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
by Tovah Lazaroff - June 17, 2009 - 12:00am

The Land of Israel Faithful group says it has a plan to construct 30 new outposts in the West Bank over the summer, in response to Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's speech a day earlier in which he said that no new settlements would be built and no additional land would be expropriated for settlement development. Former Kedumim mayor Daniella Weiss, one of the leaders of the Land of Israel Faithful, told The Jerusalem Post late Monday that her group was recruiting activists for this summer's outpost building.

Documents suggest total settlement freeze is possible
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Akiva Eldar - June 16, 2009 - 12:00am

The report in Haaretz on Tuesday whereby the U.S. administration has become convinced that it would be impossible to freeze West Bank settlement construction altogether came as a shock to Israeli peace activists. The activists quickly handed over to the Americans documents proving the legal system's approval of a settlement freeze, containing High Court of Justice rulings in which the justices rejected petitions filed by settler organizations in a bid to prevent the settlement freeze.

PM faces rebellion from Likud activists
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
by Gil Hoffman - June 17, 2009 - 12:00am

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu received the backing of his ministers and most of the Likud faction regarding his plans for a demilitarized Palestinian state, but will have a harder time obtaining the support of the Likud central committee, party activists said on Tuesday. Top Likud central committee members have begun an effort to obtain the 1,000 signatures necessary to force an emergency meeting without the approval of Netanyahu and committee head Communications Minister Moshe Kahlon.

IDF to dismantle crossing near Jericho
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
by Elie Leshem - June 17, 2009 - 12:00am

The army will remove the Vered Yericho Crossing, south of Jericho in the West Bank, on Wednesday, in order to allow free movement for vehicles and pedestrians from the city to the Jordan Valley, the IDF Spokesman said Wednesday. According to the announcement, the decision was made following an assessment by the IDF's OC Central Command as part of the government's plan to ease travel restrictions for the Palestinians.

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