September 7th

NEWS: A new poll suggests that most Palestinians prefer continuing negotiations with Israel rather than a UN initiative. The “green line” between Israel and the occupied territories remains an opaque but important boundary. A Palestinian militant is killed by an Israeli helicopter attack in Gaza. US officials urge Palestinians to abandon a UN initiative. Peace Now says settlement activity has doubled since the end of the partial, temporary moratorium. Palestinians are quoting Pres. Obama in language for their draft UN declarations, and in radio advertisements. The PA again cuts wages in half for September. Settlers attack Israeli military vehicles in a “price tag” vigilante action. Jewish-American groups think a UN initiative is inevitable, but the language is not yet determined. COMMENTARY: Amira Hass says Hamas needs the blockade of Gaza to stay in power. Zvi Bar'el says the Gaza siege is choking Israel diplomatically. Galia Golan questions whether the Israeli government really wants peace with the Palestinians. Daniel Nisman says Egypt is trying to restore order in Sinai. Herb Keinon says former Defense Secretary Gates' negative comments about PM Netanyahu are only extraordinary in that they have been made public. Osama Al Sharif says Israel's international position is suffering because it will not adapt to changing circumstances. Issandr El Amrani says Egypt should be tough but fair in Sinai. The LA Times interviews Saeb Erekat about Palestinian plans at the UN. Der Spiegel interviews Arab League chief Nabil Elaraby about Syria and Palestine.

September 6th

NEWS: Leaks reveal US efforts to wiretap Israeli diplomats. Pres. Abbas says he prefers negotiations, and will continue them but is going to have a UN initiative in September. Israel says it will tolerate some Palestinian protests in September. Abbas reportedly met secretly with DM Barak. PLO officials say they're keeping their options at the UN open for now. Settlers attack a West Bank mosque in retaliation for Israeli military demolition of "unauthorized" buildings. PM Fayyad says Israel is fully responsible for the attack. Turkey is suspending military ties with Israel. Analysts ask whether new tensions between Israel and Turkey serve Palestinian interests. The governor of the Bank of Israel warns of the financial costs of deteriorating ties with Turkey. A Palestinian citizen of Israel family wins the right to reside in a “Jewish community.” COMMENTARY: Roger Cohen says Israel is isolating itself. Nidal Foqaha says the United States should vote yes on a UN Palestinian statehood initiative. Jeffrey Goldberg says former Sec. of Defense Robert Gates told him Israel is an “ungrateful ally.” Gershon Baskin says youth are crucial to peace. David Newman says freedom of expression is in danger in Israel. Guy Goodwin-Gill says Palestinian statehood must follow a democratic process. Linda Heard says Turkey should not let Israel off the hook. Sari Bashi looks at the future of the UN flotilla report. Yossi Alpher says Israel can use the UN to make progress and corner Hamas at the same time. Ghassan Khatib says Israel now has to deal with an empowered Egyptian public on Palestine. Itamar Rabinovich says Israel’s best option is to renew negotiations with the Palestinians.

September 2nd

NEWS: Turkey expels Israeli diplomats over a UN report into last year’s flotilla incident. The UN report finds the Israeli blockade of Gaza is legal, but that Israeli forces used excessive force against the flotilla. More anxious Israelis are seeking European passports. Israelis say a UN initiative could end all existing agreements. EU foreign ministers are meeting to discuss a Palestinian UN initiative. US evangelical Christians organize against it. Egypt's foreign minister says progress is being made at the UN. France says the initiative is “dangerous.” Palestinians continue to debate the legal implications of any initiative. COMMENTARY: Akram Atallah Alaysa says that apathy defines Palestinian public attitudes towards a UN initiative. Jon Haber says BDS is not as big a challenge as some Israelis think. Yoel Marcus says Israel may have missed its chance for peace. Hassan Jabareen explains why Palestinians can't recognize Israel as a “Jewish state.” Uri Savir says the US needs to develop a new peace initiative immediately. Mehdi Hasan says a symbolic Palestinian victory at the UN would be meaningless. Larry Derfner explains why he wrote the column that got him fired from the Jerusalem Post. Brendan O'Neill says Israeli musicians should not be stigmatized for their nationality. Tom Segev recalls other momentous Septembers in Israeli-Palestinian history.

September 1st

NEWS: Israeli activists are hoping to revive their cost of living protests. Israel is bracing for a Palestinian UN initiative. The PLO says it will continue seeking diplomatic recognition even after September. Pres. Sarkozy is pushing for unified EU stance, but reports say it is badly split. Israel arrests a senior Hamas leader in the occupied West Bank. Pres. Abbas says the UN initiative is a result of Israeli refusal to comply with its international obligations. Israel threatens that any Palestinian UN initiative would put off further peace talks “for years.” COMMENTARY: Ma’an asks a number of experts whether a UN initiative would threaten refugee rights. Ha'aretz says Pres. Peres cannot save PM Netanyahu at the UN. Carlo Strenger says Israel could still deal with a Palestinian UN initiative. Douglas Bloomfield says Pres. Ahmadinejad's rhetoric makes him the best spokesman for the Israeli right. Ben White says all Palestinian leaders lack legitimacy. Leonard Fein profiles two Israelis with contrasting visions of the future. Bilal Hassen says the Israel-Egypt peace treaty has already been de facto revised. Karl Vick says Palestinians are torn between full UN membership and observer status. The Economist says the threat to cut off US funding to Palestinians is a mistake for everybody.

August 31st

NEWS: Israel is gambling that increased Egyptian troop presence in Sinai will restore order. Israel's finance minister says the Palestinian UN initiative is a “bigger threat” than Hamas. The West Bank and Gaza find themselves in different time zones this Ramadan. Israel is again withholding Palestinian tax revenues. Israel's Knesset speaker says he believes all the land, including the occupied territories, “is ours in its entirety.” Surfers and runners in Gaza train in spite of difficulties. A US citizen pleads guilty to spying for Israel. Muslim members of Congress call for the release of a captured Israeli soldier. Jordan has reportedly asked the Palestinian leadership to reconsider any UN initiative. COMMENTARY: Zvi Bar'el says the Israeli-Egyptian alliance is one between two juntas. Amira Hass says everything is in place for another Palestinian uprising. Israel's former ambassador in South Africa says Israel is facing the "South Africanization" of the conflict. Abraham Katsman says non-Jewish Republicans are outbidding Jewish Democrats on Israel in American elections. The National says Israel needs more than weapons. Meryl Chertoff and Samah A. Norquist say more Jewish and Arab-American dialogue is needed on Palestine and many issues. Israeli ambassador Michael Oren says a UN initiative could invalidate the Oslo Agreements.

August 30th

NEWS: The Israeli military is training settlers to fight Palestinian protesters. Larry Derfner is fired by the Jerusalem Post. Egypt is discussing raising its troop levels in Sinai with Israel. Israel says weapons are coming to Gaza from Libya. Hamas says reconciliation talks are going “very slowly.” PM Netanyahu meets with experts to discuss the possible borders of a future Palestinian state. Gaza NGOs express “horror” at new Hamas travel restrictions. Israeli officials say a 10-man cell is planning new attacks from Sinai. Egyptians debate their relationship with Israel. House Republicans propose a new bill to end funding to Palestinian refugees, among other measures. COMMENTARY: Amir Oren doubts Netanyahu really believes in military restraint. Akiva Eldar says Palestinian strategy will make it difficult for the US to oppose a UN initiative. Avi Yesawich says anything that happens at the UN will be purely symbolic and counterproductive. Khaled Diab says enemies need to begin to look for the good in each other. Gershon Baskin says resistance to Palestinian statehood by Israelis is national suicide and the Forward profiles him. Frida Ghitis says some are pushing for a new war in the Middle East. Palestinian refugees in Syria condemn attacks by the Assad regime. Geoffrey Paul looks in a new book by Hirsh Goodman on Israel's difficulties developing a viable peace strategy. House Foreign Affairs Committee Chair Ileana Ros-Lehtinen says the US should punish the UN for any Palestinian initiative whatsoever by cutting off funds.

August 29th

NEWS: Israelis debate their regional strategy. Israel now has to take Egyptian public opinion into consideration. Palestinians seek greater access to occupied East Jerusalem. Eight Israelis are wounded by a Palestinian man in Tel Aviv. Palestinian leaders condemned the attack. Palestinians believe they are making progress with the EU on a UN initiative. The end of Ramadan in Gaza is marked by economic woes. DM Barak says militants in Gaza are planning more attacks on Israel. The EU says Middle East unrest is producing new opportunities for peace. Egyptians debate how to restore security in Sinai. COMMENTARY: Francis Boyle says a UN initiative will not endanger Palestinian rights. Jeremy Bowen says Israel is facing an uncertain regional landscape. Gary Wexler says Israel can't improve its image without policy changes. Maik Baumgärtner and Lisa Bjurwald say it is ironic that Israeli hard-liners are aligning with European neo-Nazis. Nermeen Murad says the past should not haunt Jordanians and Palestinians citizens of Jordan. MK Tibi says Congressional visitors are not shown the realities in Israel and Palestine. Thalif Deen says Palestinians under occupation are being denied access to sufficient water.

August 26th

NEWS: The death toll in Gaza from Israeli airstrikes grows to nine. The Israeli settlement in Hebron is expanding. Hamas leaders reaffirm they will never recognize Israel. Hanan Ashrawi says statehood would not threaten the legal status of the PLO. Reuters looks at the mechanics of statehood and UN membership. The EU says aid to Palestinians is threatened by Europe's financial crisis. Videos document the brutalization of young Palestinians by Israeli occupation forces. Israelis and Palestinians bond over soccer. Israel agrees that Egypt should deploy more troops in Sinai. Palestinians and Israelis host dual-narrative tours. COMMENTARY: Yossi Sarid says "cost of living" is the latest argument for the occupation. Zeev Sternhell says social justice requires ending the occupation. Khaled Diad looks at the Israeli-Palestinian-Egyptian triangle. Patrick Seale says a larger confrontation is brewing in the Middle East. Al Jazeera interviews Guy Goodwin Gill on the implications of Palestinian statehood for the PLO's legal status. Avi Issacharoff says there is the possibility of more violence soon.

August 25th

NEWS: A cease-fire between Israel and Gaza-based militants is tested by an exchange of fire. Five Palestinians die in Israeli bombing attacks on Gaza. Palestinians are being injured by rockets fired towards Israel from Gaza. The UN expresses “deep concern” about the violence. Glenn Beck hosts a rally in the old city of occupied East Jerusalem. A report suggesting that Israel may be unprepared for developments in September is being kept secret. Mysteries abound about a Palestinian engineer arrested by Israel. Ramadan discounts fuel commerce in Hebron's old city. COMMENTARY: Abdullah Abu Eid looks at the history of Palestine and statehood. Ha'aretz says the far right in Israel is aligning itself with fanatical Christian “lunatics.” Yossi Melman says Israel is unlikely to enjoy warm relations with the new Libyan government. Larry Derfner says we are experiencing the calm before the storm. Yossi Alpher says the recent violence shows the dangers and opportunities for Israel from Arab revolutions. Bilal Hassen says PM Netanyahu is a politician who sees only what he wants. Michael Bröning says whatever happens at the UN, Israel and the Palestinians need to prepare for the day after. Salman Masalha says a wise Israeli government would embrace Palestinian statehood in its own interests. Daniel Levy looks at protests in Israel.

August 24th

NEWS: An internal Palestinian document outlines the risks of a UN initiative, but the Arab League pledges to support one. Fatah says Hamas requested the postponement of municipal elections. Rights groups urge Hamas to allow students to leave Gaza. Israel attacks targets in Gaza. Israel prepares for more possible attacks in its south. Israel believes some involved in the recent attacks were Egyptian citizens. Support for Israel has become a major factor in the election to fill Anthony Weiner's seat in Congress. An Egyptian woman is injured by a missile fired from Gaza. COMMENTARY: Mira Sucharov says she is both a Zionist and a Palestinian nationalist. Ray Hanania says common sense is important for peace. Jonathan Glennie says aid is not enough and Palestinians need an end to the occupation. Donald Macintyre says Glenn Beck's rhetoric has horrified many Israelis. Yossi Alpher says September could still produce a win-win scenario rather than a confrontation. Ghassan Khatib says Israel is hyping the prospects of a confrontation to distract from the need to end the occupation.

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