November 14th

NEWS: Israel is maintaining a block on transferring Palestinian tax revenues. The Israeli government is trying to limit foreign funding to liberal NGOs. An American activist badly injured by Israeli occupation forces during a protest files suit. As ultra-Orthodox religious groups gain power in Israeli society, women fear for their rights. Palestinians ponder their next step at the UN. A Hamas police officer is killed in an Israeli airstrike on Gaza. PM Fayyad again says he is not, and will not agree to be, an obstacle to Palestinian reunification. Western officials suggest Israel may have been behind a huge explosion in Iran. Quartet efforts are unlikely to restart negotiations. The CSM looks at RIWAQ which preserves Palestinians' cultural heritage buildings. COMMENTARY: Akiva Eldar asks why anyone would ever believe PM Netanyahu, and Uri Avnery says lying is the essence of his political career, but Deborah Danino Harkham says he has been subject to unfair character assassination for many years. Amira Hass says Israel is always coming up with new ways to expel Palestinians, but nobody cares. Susan Hattis Rolef says the NGO Bill is a threat to Israeli democracy. Mourid Barghouti says he is a poet from a country with no name. Shlomo Ben-Ami says Israel inexplicably bolstered Hamas with the prisoner swap when it should be moving quickly towards a deal with Pres. Abbas. Alon Ben-Meir says the status quo is incredibly dangerous for Israel. Natasha Mozgovaya says Pres. Obama is going to have to work harder now on Jewish outreach. Ha'aretz says Israel's leaders are putting their political interests ahead of the law.

November 11th

NEWS: Senior Obama administration official Dennis Ross resigns. Israeli occupation forces accidentally kill a settler near Hebron. The family of the late Pres. Arafat say they have discovered the cause of his death. UNESCO suspends projects after US funding is cut. Ireland urges Israel to release activists from the latest flotilla. Fatah officials say there will be no surprises in the next meeting with Hamas. Planned demolitions of “unauthorized” settlement outposts could endanger PM Netanyahu's coalition. Palestinian officials say they're worried about an outbreak of violence in the occupied territories. Raw sewage is a huge problem in Jerusalem streets. Bedouins oppose Israeli plans to relocate them. COMMENTARY: Tom Perry says Pres. Abbas needs at least a symbolic victory at the UN. Yoel Marcus says Israelis need to be protesting about their country's foreign policy as well as the economy. Analysts look at Palestinian options following UNESCO membership. Uri Savir says Israel must freeze settlements immediately in its security interests and to deal with Iran. Hassan Haidar says Israel is using the Iranian nuclear threat to “blackmail” its allies. Stuart Reigeluth says Israel's destruction of a Palestinian solar plant demonstrates the worst aspects of the occupation. Lina Attalah describes being involved in the latest Gaza flotilla. Edwin Brown says Israel should face consequences for its violations of international law. Harriet Sherwood says Palestinians might force a Security Council vote even though they know it will fail. Joshua Hersh says the US will not make any new diplomatic initiatives during the election season. Elliott Abrams says no one can blame Ross for resigning under the present circumstances, but Michael Hirsh says he's the symbol of a failed policy.

November 10th

NEWS: Palestinians say, lacking a majority in the Security Council, they will probably now take their case to the General Assembly. Comments about PM Netanyahu by Pres. Obama and Pres. Sarkozy underscore tensions between Israel and the West, though the White House is seeking to limit damage. Saboteurs blow up the Egyptian-Israeli gas pipeline for the seventh time this year. Palestinian activists are planning “freedom rides” on Israeli buses. Israelis and Palestinians dispute land uncovered by the receding Dead Sea shoreline. Support for Hamas in Gaza is dwindling. Pro-Israel students in the US are ramping up campus activities. Recent events at the UN show the continuing extent of Israeli influence in the US. COMMENTARY: Moshe Negbi says those really responsible for the assassination of PM Rabin remain unpunished. Bradley Burston says in some ways Israel is turning into Iran. Uri Misgav says the proposed Israeli law banning foreign funding for left-wing NGOs is hypocritical. Douglas Bloomfield says brinksmanship could spark another Middle East war. Yossi Alpher says Israel is unlikely to attack Iran, at least for now. The National says Palestinians should continue to push for statehood but avoid all forms of violence. George Hishmeh thinks Israel is running out of American friends. Ziad Khalil Abu Zayyad says the Palestinian UNESCO membership was intended to keep the possibility of a two-state solution alive. Udi Aloni says Judge Goldstone is wrong and Israel does indeed practice apartheid. Richard Woolcott says Australia should rethink its opposition to Palestinian UN membership. Aaron David Miller says Obama should neither pander to nor punish Netanyahu.

November 9th

NEWS: A battle is raging the House of Representatives over US aid to the PA. There are reports of more “price tag” right-wing violence by Jewish extremists, and Israel's Education Minister calls it “a cancerous tumor.” Threats against Israeli peace activists are escalating. A draft UN report says there is no consensus in the Security Council on Palestinian UN membership, with the final report to be issued on Friday. FM Malki admits Palestine cannot get a nine-vote majority. The Quartet will meet Israeli and Palestinian leaders on Nov. 14. Several reporters confirm the accuracy of an overheard discussion about PM Netanyahu between Pres. Sarkozy and Pres. Obama. Netanyahu's poor international reputation is offset by strong domestic popularity. Palestinian businesses in Jerusalem's old city are suffering. COMMENTARY: Ronen Bergman looks at the history of Israeli prisoner swap negotiations. Nicholas Goldberg reflects on what the Jerusalem passport case means to him. Ha'aretz says Netanyahu is leading the fight against peace activists. Duncan Campbell says Israeli nuclear whistleblower Mordechai Vanunu deserves freedom. Walid Choucair says Israel and Iran play off each other to mutual benefit. Gershom Gorenberg proposes three steps to end Israel's international isolation. Helga Tawil-Souri looks at the cyber attack on Palestinian cable-based services. Judith Miller says it it doesn't matter if Sarkozy and Obama dislike Netanyahu, and Jackson Diehl says it doesn't make any sense if they do.

November 8th

News: The US resumes aid to the PA, releasing $200 million, but Congress is continuing to block almost the same amount, and Israel is likely to soon release withheld Palestinian tax revenues. Israeli reports suggest authorities are planning up to 50,000 new settler housing units in occupied East Jerusalem. Pres. Sarkozy reportedly tells Pres. Obama he thinks PM Netanyahu is “a liar.” Palestinians seeking legal action against occupation forces face impossibly steep court fees. DM Barak dismisses the idea of an Israeli attack against Iran. Israeli authorities arrest settlers after razing an unauthorized outpost settlement. The home of a Peace Now official is vandalized in an apparent “price tag” attack for a second time. Despite the victory at UNESCO, the Palestinian UN initiative seems to be hitting a dead end. Some Americans are getting college credit for taking what are blatantly Israeli propaganda “college courses” at “Jerusalem U." Knesset Speaker Reuven Rivlin calls vigilante Israeli “price tag” violence “terrorism.” Commentary: Roger Cohen says there is no alternative whatsoever to a two-state solution. Avinoam Bar-Yosef says Israel should release Marwan Barghouti if it really wants to make a peace agreement with Palestinians. Yagil Levy says religious extremists are trying to take over the Israeli military. Moshe Arens says the prisoner swap with Hamas was “a victory for terror.” Akiva Eldar says Israel is trying to turn Pres. Abbas into the late Pres. Arafat. Gershon Baskin says Israel is wrong not to wholeheartedly engage with Abbas and PM Fayyad, and the PLO is wrong not to negotiate with Israel immediately. Bradley Burston says supporters of Israel and the Palestinians must recognize each other's humanity. Debra DeLee explains why Americans for Peace Now filed an amicus brief with the Supreme Court on the Jerusalem passport case, and Ori Nir responds to the attacks on Peace Now in Israel.

November 7th

NEWS:The US renews aid to the PA. Fatah officials say Israel withholding Palestinian tax revenue is “disastrous” for the region. Young Palestinian activists in Gaza are disillusioned with Hamas and other parties. A new study links Palestinian suicide bombing with personal economic distress. After the recent cyber attack on Palestinian cable-based systems, hackers bring down Israeli military websites. The Knesset has a heated debate on the “Jewish national homeland” bill. Reports suggest Pres. Abbas is considering new elections, but would not run. The Al-Saraya compound in Gaza has become a holiday mall. The BBC looks at the political impact of social change in Israel. Israel's UN ambassador says he mistakenly attended a lunch for an extremist French party. Israel reportedly will not promise to clear any attack on Iran in advance with the United States. COMMENTARY: Akiva Eldar says Pres. Obama must stop PM Netanyahu and DM Barak from attacking Iran, and Uri Bar-Yosef agrees the two are acting recklessly. Oudeh Basharat says Israel is still struggling to become a normal country. Chemi Shalev says the New Israel Fund has been unfairly maligned. Adel Safty says Israel and the Palestinians need a new paradigm for peace. Musa Keilani says Abbas should clarify what former Sec. Rice says about his negotiations with then-PM Olmert. Uri Avnery says Israel is not going to attack Iran. Graham Usher says US sanctions on UNESCO hurt itself more than the UN agency or the Palestinians. Jonathan Freedland says the current Israel is not the one he loves. David Frum says the Jerusalem passport lawsuit is the Israeli answer to Palestinian diplomatic pressure. Gershom Gorenberg asks if Israel planned to expel the Palestinians in 1948.

November 4th

NEWS: FM al-Malki says Palestine does not plan on applying for membership in more UN agencies, and UNSG Ban says such membership is “not helpful.” It appears increasingly unlikely Palestinians can muster a majority in the Security Council for UN membership, and the UK and France will reportedly abstain in any vote. Israel joins the United States and Canada in defunding UNESCO. Islamic Jihad says it's open to “an all-out war with Israel.” Israeli forces kill two militants in Gaza. A senior Fatah official says Hamas' political weakness makes national reunification a real possibility. The Washington Post profiles young Palestinian activists. A Palestinian NGO, Al Nayzak, is trying to promote a culture of technological innovation. COMMENTARY: Dawoud Abu Lebdeh says many Palestinians see the Israel-Hamas prisoner swap as a defeat for Pres. Abbas. Stephen Cohen says American Jews can be liberal but pro-Israel. Carlo Strenger says Abbas has done his best to reach out to the Israeli public in recent weeks. Desmond Tutu and Michael Mansfield defend the upcoming "Russell Tribunal” on Palestine. J.J. Goldberg says it's wrong to see the Israeli-Palestinian conflict as a zero-sum game. The National since the UAE has joined UNESCO's executive board, it should help resolve the funding crisis. The Forward calls Palestine's UNESCO membership bid “inexplicable.” Ibrahim Shikaki says the “Arab Spring” will and does look different in Palestine, and Itamar Rabinovich says the effect on Israel has been mixed. Colum Lynch asks if the US would really defund multiple UN agencies over Palestine.

November 2nd

NEWS: Israel is speeding up settlement activity in the occupied territories. The PLO accuses Israel of “blackmail.” Israel says it has successfully tested a new long-range missile. Hackers attack all cable-based services, including Internet, in the West Bank. Israel closes an extremist seminary in a settlement. US law enforcement chiefs are visiting Israel. The Guardian provides a full breakdown of the UNESCO vote. UN teachers in Gaza go on strike for a third time this year.Yasser Arafat's widow denies Tunisian corruption allegations. Former Sec. Rice says prospects for peace have worsened under Pres. Obama. COMMENTARY: The LA Times says the UNESCO vote shows how isolated the US and Israel have become, and that anti-Palestinian laws should be repealed by Congress. Amira Hass says Palestinians should pursue “popular resistance” and not negotiations with Israel. Zvi Bar'el says the Israeli government prefers trading rocket fire with Islamic Jihad to negotiating with the PLO. The Jerusalem Post denounces UNESCO's admission of Palestine. Ian Williams says Obama has shown a lack of principle on the UNESCO issue. The National says Palestinians have scored a symbolic but important victory. The Gulf News agrees. Robert Danin says the UNESCO vote has done harm. The Chicago Tribune agrees UNESCO made the wrong decision. Carrie Budoff Brown says if Obama was planning a trip to Israel, the time for it is slipping away.

November 1st

NEWS: Palestine's UNESCO membership sets off a confrontation over US funding, and there are concerns it could have significant costs to Palestinians as well. Palestine will seek world heritage status for various sites in the occupied territories. The US has initiated an initial cut off of funding to UNESCO. The CSM looks at ramifications for four key players. Palestinians now may try to join 16 other multilateral agencies. Israeli forces demolish 5 Palestinian homes in occupied East Jerusalem. A prominent Israeli NGO says Israel is forcing Palestinians out of Jerusalem. Egypt says Israel has agreed to delay further military actions in Gaza. Bosnia says its federation cannot agree on the Palestinian UN membership application and will abstain, meaning a Security Council majority in favor is virtually impossible. COMMENTARY: Judge Goldstone says Israel is not an “apartheid state.” Dimi Reider says freedom of speech is under attack in Israel. Akiva Eldar says PM Netanyahu is pursuing a policy of acquisition of territory by force. Amos Harel says Israel's military now prefers its soldiers to be killed rather than captured. Gershon Baskin says would be disastrous for the US to cut off all aid to the PA except security support. Susan Hattis Rolef says Israelis need to decide what they mean by “Jewish state.” The Daily Star says it's high time Palestine was admitted to UNESCO. Yossi Alpher says the latest Quartet initiative is pointless and depressing. Ghassan Khatib says Israel's new settlement construction plans are a direct challenge to the authority of the Quartet. Bernard Avishai says anyone who thinks boycotts are bad should be disturbed by the Israeli reaction to Palestine's UNESCO membership.

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