Too much to lose
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Ephraim Sneh - (Opinion) December 2, 2011 - 1:00am

During my visit to Jordan this week, I spoke to several people who said King Abdullah's comments about Syrian President Bashar Assad - "If I were in his shoes, I would step down" - were a reflection of the Jordanian ruler's style of governing. King Abdullah, according to the Jordanians with whom I conversed, does not belong to the culture of former Libyan leader Muammar Gadhafi, former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak and Assad: He would never order his soldiers to open fire on his people. If the disquiet in his kingdom turned into violent rioting, he would simply get up and leave.

Israel Faces $250 Million Slash in Aid
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jewish Daily Forward
by Nathan Guttman - December 2, 2011 - 1:00am

Washington — The failure of the supercommittee appointed by Congress to reach a deficit-reduction deal on the federal budget could cost Israel a cool $250 million a year. For the first time in decades, Israel could be facing a reduction in United States aid, due to automatic across-the-board budget cuts scheduled to take effect in January 2013 as a result of the supercommittee’s failure.

Israel faces legal challenge over block on Palestinians exiting Gaza to sue state
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Guardian
by Harriet Sherwood - December 1, 2011 - 1:00am

An Israeli human rights organisation has launched a legal challenge to the state's policy of denying Palestinians permission to leave Gaza to pursue claims for damages resulting from military action, which has led to dozens of cases being dismissed by the Israeli courts. The petition follows a supreme court ruling in 2006 that Palestinians were entitled to sue the state of Israel for compensation for damages caused to civilians by the military outside of "acts of war". Lawsuits were filed for death, injury, house demolitions, torture and cruel or inhumane treatment.

Hamas: Palestine is Palestine, Jordan is Jordan
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
December 2, 2011 - 1:00am

The Jordanian government understands that Hamas does not consider the possibility of Jordan as an alternative "homeland" for the Palestinian people, a member of Hamas's political bureau told pan-Arab daily Al Hayat in an interview published Friday. "[Our] brothers in Jordan know very well that we reject the idea of a surrogate homeland, an option still carried by some Israeli leaders," Izzt Al-Rishq told Al Hayat. "We do not accept any substitute for Palestine despite our appreciation and pride for Jordan." "Palestine is Palestine, and Jordan is Jordan," Rishq clarified.

Netanyahu Government Suggests Israelis Avoid Marrying American Jews
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Atlantic
by Jeffrey Goldberg - (Opinion) November 30, 2011 - 1:00am

The Netanyahu government's Ministry of Immigrant Absorption is sponsoring advertisements in at least five American communities that warn Israeli expatriates that they will lose their identities if they don't return home.

'PA won't 'back down' from UN statehood bid'
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
December 2, 2011 - 1:00am

The Palestinian Authority "will not back down" from their efforts to become a member of the United Nations, even though the PA has acknowledged that they would not succeed were the Security Council to vote today, senior PA negotiator Saeb Erekat told Ma'an News Agency Thursday. Erekat said the PA would persist even if the request fails to pass in the Security Council, adding that the PA leadership knew from the outset that United States would use its veto on the initiative.

Does Israel "Pinkwash?"
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Daily Beast
by Andrew Sullivan - (Blog) November 30, 2011 - 1:00am

Sarah Schulman claims [NYT] that Israel uses its record on gay rights to obscure the violence of the occupation. Jamie Kirchick is apoplectic:

Israel paving road to link East Jerusalem neighborhoods to city center
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Akiva Eldar - December 2, 2011 - 1:00am

The city of Jerusalem began works two weeks ago on a road that will connect the capital's northeastern neighborhoods to Jerusalem's main traffic artery, Menachem Begin Boulevard, as part of a policy to stregthen bonds between neighborhoods across the Green Line and the rest of the city. The neighborhoods to be connected by the new route are Pisgat Ze'ev, Neve Yaakov, Anatot, Shoafat, and Beit Hanina; the route 20 project will also link Jerusalem's northern neighborhoods with route 443, which in some places crosses through the West Bank.

Gaza Interior Ministry fires 120 employees
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
December 2, 2011 - 1:00am

GAZA CITY (Ma’an) -- The Interior Ministry in Gaza has fired 120 employees suspected of abusing their positions, a ministry spokesman said. Islam Shahwan told the Hamas-affiliated news site al-Risala that the employees were fired after several warnings for multiple offenses. The dismissed staff had been given many chances to correct their behavior and so all decisions were final, he added. Shahwan said the ministry had formed a committee of security officers to investigate allegations before finalizing the dismissals. No senior staff were among those sacked, he said.

Peril and paranoia in the New Middle East
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Al-Arabiya
by Nader Mousavizadeh - (Opinion) December 2, 2011 - 1:00am

The year of the Arab Awakening is drawing to a close with an ominous air of peril and paranoia hanging over the Middle East. A movement of genuine promise for more legitimate and accountable government for the peoples of the Arab world is in danger of being overwhelmed by the forces of tyranny, corruption, fundamentalism and conflict. From Syria to Egypt to Libya, Palestine, Israel and Iran, resistance to peaceful change is manifesting itself in ways new and old – and all in the context of a global re-alignment of power that few in the region yet recognize.

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