Weakening Abbas only strengthens Hamas
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
by Douglas Bloomfield - (Opinion) December 1, 2011 - 1:00am

In his zeal to punish Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas for assorted affronts real and imagined, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu may be Hamas’s most important benefactor. The Islamic terror organization has many friends – Iran, Syria, Hezbollah – but none is doing as much to expand its power and popularity from the Gaza Strip to all of the West Bank as the Netanyahu government.

In Your Eyes a Sandstorm: the Palestinian collective experience
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The National
by Jesse Rosenfeld - (Opinion) December 1, 2011 - 1:00am

I first met the British journalist Arthur Neslen in Ramallah during the autumn of 2007 when he was researching his new book, In Your Eyes A Sandstorm: Ways of Being Palestinian. A cloud of disillusionment hung over the region at that juncture. The separation wall had all but severed the West Bank, the Gaza blockade was tightening and political division between Hamas and the Palestinian Authority (PA) was at its peak. Israeli raids across the West Bank, intended to round up the remnants of the resistance from the Second Intifada, were matched by PA reprisals and arrests against Hamas.

Inside Out: Back to unilateralism
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
by Jonathan Rosen - (Opinion) December 1, 2011 - 1:00am

Over the past two decades Israel and the PLO have negotiated intermittently over a final-status arrangement to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. That process has essentially been at an impasse since 2009 for a variety of reasons, some of which are technical and tactical, while others are more substantive in nature. If we are to accept at face value the statements made by the two parties, the substantive issue for both Israelis and Palestinians preventing negotiations from advancing can be summed up as a lack of confidence in the other’s true intentions.

As the Peace Process Goes Sideways, Gaza's Economy Remains Stifled
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Time
by Karl Vick - (Blog) December 1, 2011 - 1:00am

Israel's grip on the Palestinian economy amounts to business as usual. Palestinians carry shekels in their pockets, and most of what they buy with the Israeli currency comes from Israel, which is said to account for at least 80% of foreign trade with the occupied territories. That is a dependence that goes unremarked until something untoward comes along, such as the recent Palestinian effort to gain recognition as a state.

Israel hurting itself
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ynetnews
by Uri Misgav - (Opinion) December 1, 2011 - 1:00am

Ever since the Palestinians were accepted into UNESCO last month, Israel has been halting fund transfers for the taxes and duties it collects on behalf of the Palestinian Authority in the framework of the Oslo Accords. While hundreds of millions of shekels are being held up in Jerusalem, members of Israel’s government continue to argue over what’s the right move. Let’s make it easier for them. Below is a list of conditions that make it permissible, reasonable, and preferable to continue freezing these funds:

Working to solve the conflict
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ynetnews
by Howard Sumka - (Opinion) December 1, 2011 - 1:00am

Across Israel and the Palestinian territories hard-liners empower each other and drown out voices for peace. Distrust, fear and alienation increasingly define the next generation of Israelis and Palestinians. The status quo of fatalism and political lethargy looms over them.

Anti-Arab laws and the appearance of democracy in Israel
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Bitterlemons
by Nadim Rouhana - (Opinion) December 1, 2011 - 1:00am

The spate of anti-democratic bills recently introduced by the Israeli government has forced the issue onto the public agenda in Israel. This is so not because anti-democratic bills are new, but mainly because for the first time some of the proposed bills threaten democracy for Jewish citizens themselves.

Electoral politics behind Canada's Mideast policy
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Arab News
by Mohammed Azhar Ali Khan - (Opinion) December 1, 2011 - 1:00am

Such an appeal would have found receptive ears in the days when Canada supported the United Nations and sought to promote peace with justice and respect for human rights everywhere, including the Middle East. But then Liberal Prime Minister Paul Martin Jr. moved away from Canada's traditional fairness in favor of unquestioned backing of Israel. Prime Minister Stephen Harper's government has gone even farther.

Al-Zahar: Inter-Palestinian reconciliation will not take place because Abbas is not serious about this
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Asharq Alawsat
by Saleh Al-Naami - (Interview) December 1, 2011 - 1:00am

Hamas strongman Mahmoud al-Zahar broke ranks last week to criticize Hamas leader Khalid Mishal on his handling of the inter-Palestinian reconciliation talks with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. The inter-Palestinian reconciliation saw Mishal accept a Palestinian State within the 1967 borders, as well as the provision of another time-limit period for negotiations with Israel, something that al-Zahar strongly spoke out against.

New anti-Semitism directed at Israel’s liberals
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Carlo Strenger - (Opinion) December 1, 2011 - 1:00am

A few days ago I was struck by a statement by MK Yaakov Katz of the Nation Union party about the law that will allow Justice Grunis to be Dorit Beinish’s successor as Chief Justice of the Supreme Court: “This Law returns control to the people and wrests it away from a small, pathetic group; a bunch of Tel Avivian, secular Neturei Karta that emanates lack of love for the people of Israel, and adhere to laws of the gentiles.”

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