NEWS: The PA and PM Fayyad face a backlash over tax hikes. Fatah officials say Palestinian leaders may agree on a new government by Thursday. UNSG Ban is on a peace mission to the Middle East. PM Netanyahu is reelected Likud chief. Religious extremists deploying harsh rhetoric are coming to the forefront of both Israeli and Palestinian discourse. Palestinians clash with Israeli forces in occupied East Jerusalem. Hackers target Palestinian news websites. Released Palestinian prisoners are adapting to life in Qatar. Growing lawlessness in Sinai may threaten the Egyptian-Israeli peace treaty. COMMENTARY:Ha'aretz says Netanyahu's new committee on settlements would not be necessary if the government followed the law. Douglas Bloomfield says Hamas is running away from Syria like rats fleeing a sinking ship. Josh Nathan-Kazis says concerns about Israel have replaced racial anxieties as the main obstacles Pres. Obama must overcome with Jewish voters. Rami Khouri says he's not impressed with the apparent rapprochement between Hamas and Jordan and thinks it should be put to a referendum. Osama Al Sharif says it's not clear how much Hamas really being brought out of the cold, but distancing it from Tehran has to be a good thing. Efraim Inbar says the Amman talks are another exercise in total futility. Elliott Abrams says designating 70 settlements as “national priority” areas is a foolish move by Israel but is actually Washington's fault. John Whitbeck says Israel is using carefully crafted language to assert ownership of East Jerusalem and other occupied areas. APN interviews Yossi Alpher on the Amman negotiations. Robert Staloff urges American politicians to stop speaking in terms of “ironclad commitments” to Israel.

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