September 14th

NEWS: An Israeli court rules in favor of settlers in a dispute over a house in occupied Hebron. PM Netanyahu denies he is trying to meddle in US electoral politics. Israelis in Tel Aviv seem unconcerned by the threat of missiles. Palestinian negotiators mourn the death of Amb. Stevens, describing him as a good and fair man. The Israeli military persists in repeatedly destroying a Bedouin village in the Negev. A small group of protesters in Gaza hold their own demonstration against an anti-Muslim film. Israeli Bedouins may join the protest movement as well. Palestinians and Israelis are taking foreigners on “dual narrative” tours of the "holy land." Palestinian families in occupied East Jerusalem decry the lack of proper schooling facilities. COMMENTARY: Eric Lewis says, for all his talk about American exceptionalism, Mitt Romney seems willing to allow Netanyahu to dictate a conflict with Iran. Charles Krauthammer says Pres. Obama has abandoned Israel. The Forward says Netanyahu has come perilously close to making Israel a US election issue. Rachel Shabi says Israel should understand the power of words, as well as weapons, in the new Middle East. JJ Goldberg draws three lessons from the controversy over Jerusalem in the DNC platform. Avi Issacharoff says West Bank protests this week demonstrated that Netanyahu's concept of “economic peace” is hollow. Ashraf al-Ajrami says, even amid protests, Palestinians must remain united. Khaled Abu Toameh says the protests were an attempt by elements within Fatah to get rid of PM Fayyad. Xinhua says 19 years after the signing of the Oslo Accords, peace between Israel and the Palestinians seems no closer. Jon Donnison says, one year after the failed UN bid, Palestinians have all but disappeared from the world stage.

September 13th

NEWS: Israelis are increasingly concerned about the potential fallout from remarks by PM Netanyahu. Israel hints it may continue to press the US over Iran. Israel distances itself from a film that mocks the Prophet Muhammad. The Israeli-Palestinian conflict is being depicted in a number of films at the Toronto Film Festival. Conditions are worsening for Palestinian farmers in the occupied West Bank. Israel increases its military budget. Hamas leader Hanniyeh postpones a visit to Cairo. Palestinian prisoners in Israel launch a hunger strike for the release of long-serving fellow prisoners. Few candidates are being registered for upcoming local West Bank elections. Pres. Abbas offers condolences to the United States following the murder of American diplomats in Libya. Palestinian officials say Israel has seized millions of shekels of Palestinian tax revenue. Nature and Parks Authority issues the first official Israeli objection to the route of the separation barrier, citing environmental concerns. FM Lieberman launches a series of insults against Abbas. COMMENTARY: David Remnick Crispian Balmer says Netanyahu risks overplaying his hand in his dispute with the US over Iran. Daniel Kurtzer says that the US and Israel need diplomacy, not recriminations. Ari Shavit says the hope offered by PM Fayyad's policies is fading. Douglas Bloomfield says the next American president must work with Arab states to revive the peace process. George Hishmeh says Americans need to understand the Palestinian predicament.

September 12th

NEWS: While the PA says it's canceling tax increases to meet the demands of protesters, union leaders say demonstrations will continue. Protests in Ramallah continue, and focus on criticism of Palestinian leaders, especially PM Fayyad. Israeli officials say the US has refused a request by PM Netanyahu to meet Pres. Obama next month, although the White House plays down the report. Netanyahu orders the release of Palestinian tax revenues to the cash-strapped PA. Hamas leader Hanniyeh is visiting Egypt. Six Jewish Israeli teenagers are charged in an attack on a Palestinian man in Jerusalem. Israel is ranked the second-best educated country in the OECD. Hamas sentences a man in Gaza to death for collaboration with Israel. Palestinians who have fled Syria protest against conditions in a Lebanese refugee camp. The US is reportedly attempting to dissuade Palestinians from seeking non-member observer state status at the UN in September. COMMENTARY: Daniel Levy says Israel really does have to confront the choice between continuing the occupation and becoming a single, democratic state. Saud Abu Ramadan says both a free-trade agreement with Egypt and continued smuggling through tunnels would benefit Hamas. Amira Hass says the PA serves everyone except its own public. Oudeh Basharat says Israeli journalists show more sympathy for tomatoes than they do for Arabs. Moshe Arens says the US-Israel relationship doesn't depend on individual politicians. Steve Caplan says attempts to boycott Israeli academics and scientists are hypocritical and counterproductive. Ron Kampeas says US-Israel tensions regarding Iran are boiling over. David Amitai says Israel's Jews and Arabs are united by food, if nothing else. Mairav Zonszein says a new study shows violence begets violence among Israeli and Palestinian children.

September 11th

NEWS: PM Fayyad announces new economic measures in response to Palestinian protests at the rising cost of living in the occupied West Bank. The protests have focused on the PA leadership, and are beginning to turn violent, but no injuries are reported yet. Palestinian leaders are looking for ways of improving the economic situation. Pres. Abbas says Israeli restrictions are impeding an effective response to the economic crisis. The PA says it is working to facilitate the creation of an industrial zone in Jenin. Palestinians say Israel intends to confiscate land near Nablus for a new settler bypass road. Israeli officials complain about US policy towards Iran. PM Netanyahu suggests the United States has no right to restrain Israel from attacking Iran. UN officials criticize both the blockade of Gaza and rocket attacks against Israel. Israel is creating a new police unit to combat “price tag” violence against Palestinians. Hamas says it has agreed to create a joint security committee with Egypt. Israel instructs its diplomats to raise the issue of Jewish refugees from the Arab world in Israel to “counteract” the Palestinian refugee issue. India reiterates its support for Palestinian independence. Israeli and Palestinian women launch a joint business in handicrafts. The tax exempt status of the Zionist Organization of America has reportedly been revoked. COMMENTARY: Akiva Eldar says a new study demonstrates that Palestinian citizens of Israel and Palestinians living under Israeli occupation have developed separate narratives, and, in a separate column, he argues that those who have given up on the two-state solution are surrendering to defeatism. The Jerusalem Post claims that Palestinians and other Arabs are not only responsible for the Palestinian refugee problem, but also for Jewish refugees in Israel from the Arab world. Sophie Claudet and Saleh Jadallah doubt Pres. Morsy will adopt substantially new policies towards Gaza.

September 10th

NEWS: A new UN report details poverty in Gaza. Palestinians continue to protest rising prices, as truck drivers block streets. Israeli officials rule out Palestinian requests to modify the Paris Protocol to ease economic woes. The PA says public employees will receive half pay on Wednesday. Protesters call on Pres. Abbas to resign. PM Fayyad says the protests demonstrate the PA's commitment to freedom of expression. A rocket fired from Gaza hits a house in southern Israel, causing damage but no injuries. Israel will compensate a Palestinian family which lost two sons in the 2009 Gaza war. Israel's Cabinet votes to upgrade the status of a school in a West Bank settlement to that of an officially recognized “university.” Palestinian children in occupied Hebron face serious challenges in returning to school. Some Palestinians in Jordan are threatened with losing their citizenship. Palestinian refugees in Lebanon suffer from long waits for medical care. COMMENTARY: Saud Abu Ramadan argues Salafist militants in Gaza are trying to drag Hamas into a war with Israel. Adam Gonn says there's a direct connection between a potential renewed Palestinian UN bid and the urgent need for economic relief. Amira Hass says Palestinians should remember their problems mainly stem from the occupation. Hagai Segal says the settlers have won the battle for the West Bank against Israeli moderates and the Palestinians. Alon Liel says Israel is repeating its “low stool” diplomatic tactics used against Turkish officials with US Amb. Shapiro. Salman Masalha says it's ridiculous that anybody involved in the Oslo Accords ever got a Nobel Peace Prize. Eric Yoffie says it won't matter much to Israel whether Pres. Obama is reelected or Mitt Romney wins the presidency. Robert Turner says the new UN report shows the urgent need to lift the blockade of Gaza. The National encourages the Palestinians to seek greater recognition at the UN. Tariq Alhomayed says it is political buffoonery for Arabs to allow Hamas and Hezbollah to thrive while the PA is on the brink of bankruptcy. Dan Ephron profiles Israel's powerful and growing settler movement.

September 7th

NEWS: Palestinian protests against high prices continue. Palestinian taxi drivers clog roads as part of the protests. PM Fayyad says he is ready to resign if need be. Hamas says it will pursue Salafists in Gaza from “street to street.” Seven more Palestinians are killed in Syrian government shelling of the Yarmouk refugee camp. A Palestinian man is assaulted in Jerusalem in another suspected hate attack. House Intelligence Committee Chair Rogers confirms the US-Israel dispute over Iran policy. DM Barak says Israel reserves the right to take action on its own against Iran. A new poll suggests that most Jewish Israelis are optimistic about the future but Palestinian citizens are concerned. Pres. Morsy meets with Pres. Abbas. An Israeli oil company is asking the PA for permission to drill in the occupied territories. PM Netanyahu and US Amb. Shapiro reportedly had a harsh exchange of views on Iran last month. COMMENTARY: Hussein Ibish argues that the new Israeli campaign on Jewish refugees and migrants to Israel from the Arab world is cynical and unhelpful. Ahmad Majdoubeh says if there is a "Palestinian Spring" at hand, it's because of the divisions between Fatah and Hamas. Dominique Moisi says Palestinian and Jewish citizens have found a way to work together in medicine. George Hishmeh says the United States should work to build a nuclear-free Middle East. Ithamar Handelman-Smith says all of Israeli society is responsible for the attempted lynching of a Palestinian in Jerusalem. Khaled Diab says the plight of Bedouin children represents the threat Israel's occupation poses to all Palestinian students. Yoaz Hendel says the United States is naturally placing its own interests ahead of its friendship with Israel. Stuart Eizenstat and Lester Crown both say Pres. Obama has demonstrated his commitment to Israel's security "in countless ways." Eshkol Nevo says Jewish Israeli "price tag" violence is not just a disgrace, it's a national security threat. Chris McGreal says the DNC reversal on Jerusalem demonstrates what a low priority Middle East peace talks now are for the United States. Yossi Verter says Barak now opposes an attack against Iran. Eyal Chowers says the 1937 Peel Commission report still has much relevance for Israel and the Palestinians. Henry Siegman says Israel has destroyed the two-state solution and only serious Palestinian masures can revive it.

September 6th

NEWS: Six Palestinian militants are killed by Israeli airstrikes in Gaza. The UN says Palestinians are slipping deeper into poverty. The PA financial crisis continues to deepen. Palestinian sources tell Xinhua some factions in the West Bank, without naming them, are inciting people to protest against PM Fayyad. President Abbas says the “Palestinian spring” has begun. Hamas is trying to regain its popularity in Gaza. The PA says it has arrested suspects in the assassination of a senior security official in Jenin. Hamas is training its diplomats in preparation to challenge the PLO internationally. Israel agrees to pay damages to the family of a Palestinian detainee left to die on a highway. Three French magistrates investigating his death are planning to exhume the body of the late Pres. Arafat. Following a controversy, the Democratic Party platform restores language saying Jerusalem is Israel's capital. A new study suggests gaps may be growing between Palestinian citizens of Israel and those living under occupation. COMMENTARY: Rami Livni says Israel must end the occupation, not for the Palestinians but for itself. Anshel Pfeffer says there are further signs that Israel will not be attacking Iran any time in the foreseeable future. Yariv Oppenheimer says everything Israel has constructed in the occupation is reversible. The Jerusalem Post says Israel must be tough with the Palestinians regarding electricity payments. Douglas Bloomfield says a lot of Israeli rhetoric about attacking Iran may be designed to make the reelection of Pres. Obama more difficult. Asharq Al-Awsat interviews Ghazi Hamad, "Deputy Foreign Minister" for Hamas, about the organization's diplomatic initiative. Crispian Balmer says that Israel is backing down from threats against Iran after being rebuked by the United States. Alon Pinkas says in spite of PM Netanyahu's mistakes, there is no “crisis” with the United States. Laura Rosen outlines the process whereby the DNC platform reintroduced Jerusalem into its text. Daniel Seidemann and Josh Rogin separately also examine the controversy. Aaron David Miller says the controversy is silly and irrelevant.

September 5th

NEWS: PM Netanyahu reportedly cut short a national security meeting on Iran, accusing one of its participants of leaking information to the media. Israel is trying to downplay differences with the United States over Iran policy. A senior Palestinian security officer in Jenin is killed by gunmen. The PA asks Israel to facilitate the travel of a French team investigating the death of the late Pres. Arafat. Israel releases a Hamas leader in the West Bank. PM Fayyad will debate a Palestinian youth leader on television. The PA forms a committee to investigate the rising cost of living. A Jewish Australian businessman has big plans for occupied East Jerusalem. The Israeli government is paying hundreds of thousands of shekels to move settlers' mobile homes from one part of the occupied West Bank to another. Norway's FM says Israel and the Palestinians may be losing the chance at a two-state solution. Knesset Speaker Rivlin says Pres. Obama doesn't understand the Middle East, while FM Lieberman praises him. The Israeli campaign to “counterbalance” the final status issue of Palestinian refugees with the question of Jewish refugees and migrants to Israel from Arab states is continuing. Bedouin children again begin attending a school threatened with demolition by Israel. The Democratic Party platform is changed to better reflect occupied East Jerusalem's role as a final status issue to be negotiated between the parties. COMMENTARY: Haim Saban says Pres. Obama's support for Israel has been rocksolid in every way. Ha'aretz says Israel's police are serving as an unlikely bridge between Palestinian and Jewish citizens. Zvi Bar'el says the blockade of Gaza has been counterproductive and should be lifted. Linda Gradstein asks if Israel is preparing to attack Iran. The Forward says there's too much secrecy about funding in American politics, including among pro-Israel organizations. Tony Karon says Israeli plans to attack Iran have fallen apart because of the force of reason. Avner Cohen says Israel's constant threats against Iran are damaging its relations with the United States. Peter Beinart says it looks like the United States, including the Democratic Party, is giving up on Israeli-Palestinian peace for the meanwhile.

September 4th

NEWS: A man in Gaza commits self immolation apparently in an act of economic despair. In response to Israeli prompting, the US is weighing new measures against Iran. Pro-settler vandals attack a monastery near Jerusalem. Egypt appoints a new ambassador to Israel. 300 settlers finally evacuate a tiny outpost after years of wrangling, although some of them are vowing to return. Israeli authorities threaten to demolish a Bedouin school in the occupied West Bank. Occupation forces are increasingly using their new “skunk” weapon against Palestinian protesters. Palestinians are increasingly distressed by the high cost of living in the West Bank. Sweeping new divorce laws empowering wives come into effect in the West Bank. Two people are killed as Syrian government forces again shell a Palestinian refugee camp. Israeli settlers and police begin evicting a Palestinian family in occupied East Jerusalem. Hamas is persisting with plans to censor the Internet in Gaza. Palestinians accuse Israel of pillaging Dead Sea resources. Hugh Naylor looks at the motivations for Suha Arafat's campaign regarding her late husband's death. Egyptian Jihadists claim Palestinians were behind the attack on Egyptian forces in Sinai. Palestinian refugees from Syria are facing harsh conditions in Jordan. COMMENTARY: Hussein Ibish says Americans have to make up their minds about whether Israeli-Palestinian peace is a vital national interest or not. Paul Thomas Chamberlin says history shows today's terrorists can be tomorrow's peacemakers. Avi Issacharoff says Israel, Egypt and Hamas need to work in an uneasy, unspoken coalition against Sinai extremists. Oudeh Basharat says emerging Arab democracy is good for Israel. Nir Hasson says a united Palestinian electorate could pick the next mayor of Jerusalem. Nahum Barnea says as bad as the current Israeli government is, the next one won't be any better. Herb Keinon says US-Israel differences over Iran are mainly due to the upcoming American election. Leonard Fein says the occupation is corrupting the soul of Israel. Julia Hurley says a new UN report has sounded a wake-up call on living conditions in Gaza. Shai Feldman says Pres. Peres is still important.

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