January 15th

Israel’s attack on Gaza city continues, including bombing the headquarters of UNRWA reportedly with white phosphorous munitions, as the Palestinian death toll passes 1000 (1), (2), (3), (4). Ha’aretz argues that Hamas is facing unfavorable cease-fire terms, while Tariq Alhomayed examines differences between its leadership factions in Gaza and Damascus (5), (6). The New York Times reports on the war’s political damage to the Palestinian Authority (7). Several Arab and Israeli commentaries strongly criticize Israel’s actions (8), (9), (13), (14). Others examine lessons to be learned by Hamas, the incoming Obama Administration, and Arab governments (10), (11), (12). The US is reportedly considering cutting $1 billion in loan guarantees to Israel because of continued settlement activity (15).

January 14th

Israeli forces storm a neighborhood in Gaza city (1) as their ongoing offensive continues (2) (3). Speculation grows about the affect of the Israeli incursion on the strength of Hamas (4) (5) as well as on Mahmoud Abbas’ administration (7), and Israel’s public image (10). Israeli defense officials voice support for an immediate ceasefire (9). Gaza’s underground tunnels continue to cause concern (13).

January 13th

Israeli officials are claiming that as result of the offensive in Gaza Hamas has been "weakened but not destroyed" (1),(2). The offensive has forced tens of thousands of Palestinians to flee their homes (3). Israeli leaders debate how and when to end the 17-day operation (5). Egypt is urging Hamas to agree to a truce (6). Israel is facing increased international pressure due to the mounting civilian death toll in Gaza (9),(10). Secretary of State-designate Hillary Clinton reaffirms commitment to Palestinian state at confirmation hearing (11).

January 12th

Israeli troops push into Gaza City, with the Palestinian death toll during the offensive reportedly reaching 900 (1), (2). Israel is accused of using illegal white phosphorus munitions, while the Hamas leadership is accused of hiding in the basement of a hospital (3), (4). Numerous articles examine Hamas' performance in the conflict, its positions regarding a cease-fire, and political status (5), (6), (7), (8). Quartet envoy Tony Blair says elements of the cease-fire are in place, but the New York Times says that Egypt and Jordan fear being drawn into de facto responsibility for parts of the occupied Palestinian territories (9), (10). After two weeks of intense criticism, Egypt starts to defend its policies (11). Ha'aretz argues that Israel has overcome the stigma of its failed 2006 campaign in Lebanon (12). A commentary article by ATFP President Ziad Asali in the Daily Star urges an end to Israeli settlement activity (14). Roger Cohen of the New York Times complains that President-elect Obama's presumptive Middle East policy team apparently will include no Arab or Iranian Americans (15).

January 11th

Israeli ground forces enter populated Palestinian areas in Gaza, as Israel’s leaders proclaim that the conflict is nearing an end (1), (2), (3), (4). Cease-fire talks focus on tunnels, border security (5), (6), (7), (8). Ha’aretz says that the UN Security Council cease-fire resolution was a “serious diplomatic malfunction” for Israel, while Asharq Alawsat calls it a victory for Arab moderates (9), (10). Reuters and Ha’aretz look at who is “winning” and “loosing” thus far (11), 12).

January 10th

The conflict in Gaza continues, with further civilian casualties and another reported atrocity by Israeli forces (1), (2), (3). Focus increases on the issue of tunnels and border security (4), (5), (6), (7). Anger against Arab governments continues mount, especially in and toward Egypt (9), (10), Israeli writer Tom Segev abandons hope for peace (12).

January 9th

Both Israel and Hamas reject a cease-fire call issued by the UN Security Council, as Israel expands its ground operations in Gaza (1) (2). Full text and statements for UNSCR 1860 (3). Raghida Dergham tracks Arab diplomacy leading to the vote (9). The UN says that the IDF admits there was no gunfire emanating from the school they shelled earlier this week (4). The BBC reports another Israeli attack on a civilian shelter (5). The UN and Red Cross curtail their aid work in Gaza, citing danger to their staff from continued Israeli attacks (6). A pair of opinion pieces discuss how the current conflict will affect the Arab world and beyond (10) (11). Mouin Rabbani and the Economist examine the origins of the conflict (12) (13). The New York Review of Books surveys a group of memoirs about the failed peace talks during the Clinton Administration (14).

January 8th

Two rockets fired from Lebanon land in northern Israel, as the IDF responds with artillery shells (1) (2). Fear of an Israeli offensive in the southern Gaza town of Rafah looms despite continued talk of a cease fire (3). An analysis by Allistair Lyon examines what the Gaza crisis means for the upcoming expiration of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’ term in office (6). A pair of articles in the Los Angeles Times discuss the differences between the Arab and Israeli media portrayal of the conflict (9) (10). An op-ed by Rashid Khalidi in the New York Times offers a crash course on the Gaza strip and its people (12). In an op-ed for The Washington Post President Jimmy Carter delivers his assessment of the situation (14).

January 7th

French President Nicolas Sarkozy announces that Israel and the Palestinian Authority have reportedly agreed on a French-Egyptian truce plan for Gaza (1). The United Nations rejects the Israeli military's claim that Gaza militants were operating out of the UN school attacked yesterday (2). Israel's security cabinet postpones a vote regarding expansion of operations in Gaza, amid growing bids for a truce (3). Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas appeals to the UN Security Council for an end to the violence (4). Israel continues to obstruct foreign journalists from entering Gaza (5). President-elect Obama breaks his long silence on the conflict (7) (9). Daoud Kuttab explores the quagmire of attempting to assign blame for the current situation (11). An interview with outgoing National Security Advisor Stephen Hadley provides his commentary on the issue (14).

January 6th

An op-ed in The Washington Times by ATFP President Dr. Ziad Asali examines how continued settlement expansion threatens prospects for peace (1). Fighting continues on the ground in Gaza as Israel expands its offensive, while Israeli tanks attack a UN school, killing forty-two (2) (3) (8) (9). In a transcript of a CNN interview, Dr. Asali addresses the current crisis (4). A pair of opinion pieces discuss the role of Hezbollah in the conflict (5) (6). An editorial in the Los Angeles Times urges the international community to intervene in support of a cease-fire (7). International envoy Tony Blair sees the closure of Hamas’ underground tunnels as the key to attaining a cease fire (10). United States Congressman David Price stresses the importance of diplomacy in an op-ed for the Charlotte Observer (14).

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