'Gov't spent 22.3% more on settlements'
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
by Tovah Lazaroff - July 22, 2009 - 12:00am

In past years, the government has spent 22.3 percent more on municipal budgets in the settlements than it has on such budgets within the Green Line, according to a new report issued Tuesday by the Israel European Policy Network. It explained how in 2002, the state provided 34.7% of the municipality budget for communities within the Green Line, and 57% of settlements' municipal budgets. Roby Nathanson, who coauthored the report for the policy forum, told The Jerusalem Post that the breakdown was similar in 2007. The Finance Ministry could not be reached for comment.

U.S. Pressure On Jewish Settlements Spurs Sales
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from National Public Radio (NPR)
by Peter Kenyon - July 22, 2009 - 12:00am

Relations between the Obama administration and the Israeli government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu continue to worsen over Israel's refusal to halt new construction in Jewish settlements. But as the Obama administration continues to press for a freeze to all new units, real estate agents are reporting a rush to buy apartments both in east Jerusalem and the West Bank. Real Estate Boom

'US, Israel rift on settlement issue to be resolved soon'
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
July 22, 2009 - 12:00am

Israel's Ambassador to the United States Michael Oren said that the disagreement between America and Israel on the settlement issue would be resolved soon. In an interview with Israel radio Wednesday, Oren claimed that there was no confrontation and no tension between the two countries. This was Oren's first interview since he presented his credentials on Monday to US President Barack Obama.

Israel's barrier to progress
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Guardian
by Seth Freedman - (Opinion) July 22, 2009 - 12:00am

In many parts of the West Bank, Israel's much-vaunted separation wall is conspicuous by its absence; Ha'aretz reports that only around 60% of the barrier has been completed will come as no surprise to those who spend time in the area around the project's proposed route.

Anti-colonialism, the Barack Obama way
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Daily Star
by Rami Khouri - (Opinion) July 22, 2009 - 12:00am

One of the most important political dynamics in the Middle East these days is the escalating war of words between the United States and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu over the international demand to freeze Jewish settlements and colonies in Arab lands occupied in 1967. It is surprising yet heartening that the Obama team has come out strongly demanding that Israel freeze the expansion of all settlements, with no exceptions for natural growth, pre-approved projects or anything else.

Israel cuts Palestinian tragedy from textbooks
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Associated Press
by Matti Friedman - July 22, 2009 - 12:00am

The Israeli government will remove references to what the Palestinians call the "catastrophe" of Israel's creation from textbooks for Arab schoolchildren, the country's education minister said Wednesday. The reference to "al-naqba" or catastrophe, what the Palestinian's call their defeat and exile in the war over Israel's 1948 creation, was controversially inserted by a dovish education minister for the first time in 2007. The phrase remains contentious six decades after Israel was founded.

Arrogant defiance
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jordan Times
July 22, 2009 - 12:00am

Israel’s arrogant defiance of the US, its main ally and supporter, over the construction of yet another Israeli settlement in East Jerusalem has no easy or immediate answers. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s rejection of Washington’s demands that it cease and desist from building yet another housing project in the heart of East Jerusalem is unprecedented and provocative. Never before has the Jewish state provoked its closest ally to such an extent and gotten away with it.

Netanyahu calls for Jewish investment in Palestinian economy
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Jewish Telegraphic Agency (JTA)
July 22, 2009 - 12:00am

Diaspora Jews should join Arabs in investing in the Palestinian economy, Benjamin Netanyahu told U.S. Jewish leaders. The Israeli prime minister listed prosperity for the Palestinians among six conditions for lasting Israeli-Palestinian peace in a call Tuesday with members of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations. Netanyahu outlined steps he was taking to facilitate commerce in the West Bank and spur the Palestinian economy, which he said could flourish with the cooperation of the Palestinian Authority and with the help of Jews and Arabs overseas.

Jerusalem ‘crisis’ reveals U.S.-Israel communications breakdown
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Jewish Telegraphic Agency (JTA)
by Ron Kampeas - July 22, 2009 - 12:00am

The summoning of an ambassador usually signifies a crisis. So what does it mean when the ambassador isn't summoned? That's the question that had U.S. officials scratching their heads after last week's mixed signals over whether the State Department had summoned Michael Oren, Israel's new ambassador, for a dressing-down over a Jewish plan to build 20 apartments in Sheik Jarrah, a Palestinian neighborhood in eastern Jerusalem. Israeli officials had leaked the reports of a "summons" to the media -- except Oren was never summoned, JTA has confirmed.

Gaza blast shakes Dahlan wedding
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from BBC News
July 22, 2009 - 12:00am

An explosion in southern Gaza has torn through a party attended by relatives of the West Bank-based Fatah strongman Muhammad Dahlan, injuring 50 people. The blast happened on Tuesday at a wedding reception in Khan Younis. The groom, who is Mr Dahlan's nephew, as well as women and children, were injured. The Hamas authorities said three suspects were in custody. The device was reported to have been placed under a street stage erected so the wedding guests could dance.

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