Democratic presidential hopeful Barack Obama kicks off an international tour including five Middle Eastern states (1). An op-ed in the German daily Der Speigel urges a strong American presence in the Middle East peace process (3). A recent poll by J Street, a Washington based Jewish lobby, finds that the views of American Jews on the Middle East may be more dovish than is commonly believed (5) (11). The Israel-Hamas ceasefire continues to hold, but few tangible gains have been made for Gazans (7). The Fatah government intervenes in the IDF crackdown on allegedly Hamas-affiliated organizations in the West Bank (8) (10).

American Task Force on Palestine - 1634 Eye St. NW, Suite 725, Washington DC 20006 - Telephone: 202-262-0017