Direct negotiations may be announced imminently. Palestinians reiterate the demand for settlement freeze. Pres. Abbas says consultations are ongoing. Hamas and other extremist groups denounce negotiations. Norway's FM says the PA needs financial support. DM Barack approves the purchase of F-35 fighter jets. Five years after Israel's unilateral redeployment, Gaza's future remains uncertain. Amira Hass says Hamas relies on brute force to rule in Gaza. Akiva Eldar says the plight of Palestinian citizens of Israel shows what would be the ugly face of a binational state. Israeli occupation troops begin to experiment with politeness. The PA issues a one-year progress report on state and institution building. Sherwin Pomerantz says Israelis must support the new planned Palestinian city in the West Bank. The PA intends to stop referring patients to Israel. The BBC looks at the commando unit that stormed the Gaza flotilla, and Gwynne Dyer says both flotilla activists and Israel are lying about the incident. A bereaved Gaza doctor publishes a new book promoting peace. Tensions continue to fester between Hamas and Islamic Jihad. Hussein Ibish examines where the parties find themselves on the eve of direct negotiations. Ziad Asali says the PA is preparing to use its education system to combat extremism.

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