U.S. Weighs Tactics on Israeli Settlement
Media Mention of Ghaith al-Omari In The New York Times - June 1, 2009 - 12:00am

WASHINGTON — As President Obama prepares to head to the Middle East this week, administration officials are debating how to toughen their stance against any expansion of Israeli settlements in the West Bank. The measures under discussion — all largely symbolic — include stepping back from America’s near-uniform support for Israel in the United Nations if Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel does not agree to a settlement freeze, administration officials said.

ATFP Welcomes President Obama’s Strong Support for Palestinian Statehood, Israeli Settlement Freeze
Press Release - Contact Information: Hussein Ibish - May 29, 2009 - 12:00am

Washington, DC, May 28 -- The American Task Force on Palestine (ATFP) today welcomed President Barack Obama’s statements of strong support for Middle East peace based on the creation of a Palestinian state to live alongside Israel and for a complete freeze to all Israeli settlement activity. President Obama and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas met privately at the White House this afternoon before being joined by their delegations, and spoke briefly with reporters afterwards.

Obama tells Israel to halt expansion
Media Mention of Ghaith al-Omari In The Boston Globe - May 29, 2009 - 12:00am

WASHINGTON - President Obama received Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas at the White House yesterday with an invaluable welcoming gift: a toughly worded, categorical US demand for Israel to stop expanding settlements in the West Bank. But hours before the two men met, the Israeli government flatly rejected the demand. Spokesman Mark Regev said that "normal life in those communities must be allowed to continue," including some construction.

High stakes for Obama-Abbas talks
Media Mention of Ziad Asali In BBC News - May 28, 2009 - 12:00am

When they met last summer in Ramallah, on the West Bank, Barack Obama promised Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas he would be an active partner for peace, if he made it into the White House. A year later, President Obama is sitting in the Oval Office, keeping his promise to tackle the Middle East conflict from the start of his term, but he is probably wondering whether Mr Abbas is the partner he was hoping for.

Questions of Legitimacy Loom Over Abbas In Meeting with Obama
Media Mention of Ghaith al-Omari In PBS - May 28, 2009 - 12:00am

President Obama met with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas Thursday to discuss divisions among the Palestinian people and the ongoing controversy over Israeli settlements on the West Bank. Two Mideast analysts mull the outcome of the meeting.

Obama Deserves Palestinian Support
In Print by Ghaith al-Omari - Israel Policy Forum (Opinion) - May 27, 2009 - 12:00am

Over the course of successive visits by Middle Eastern leaders to the White House, President Obama's policy for resolving the Arab-Israeli conflict is starting to unfold. King Abdullah of Jordan's visit highlighted the important role the Arab world should play in support of the peace process. Prime Minister Netanyahu's visit reiterated President Obama's commitment to the two-state framework and the centrality of freezing settlement construction. President Abbas' visit will play an important role in clarifying what the Palestinians need to do.

The most effective stick to use with Israel
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jordan Times
by Michael Jansen - (Opinion) May 21, 2009 - 12:00am

The most interesting thing about Monday’s allegedly momentous meeting between US President Barack Obama and Israeli Premier Benjamin Netanyahu is that the two men agreed on nothing. Obama gave precedence to fruitful negotiations for a Palestinian-Israeli deal while Netanyahu continued to insist that the threat posed by Iran’s non-existent nuclear weapons should be given priority. Obama insisted on early Palestinian-Israeli negotiations without conditions, Netanyahu reiterated his demand for recognition of Israel as a Jewish state before talks could resume.

Breakthrough or Breakdown: The Obama Administration and the Arab-Israeli Peace Process
Press Release - Contact Information: Ghaith al-Omari - May 21, 2009 - 12:00am

On May 11th, 2009 ATFP Advocacy Director Ghaith Al-Omari took part in a panel at the Woodrow Wilson Center entitled "Breakthrough or Breakdown: The Obama Administration and the Arab-Israeli Peace Process". Mr. Al-Omari mapped the current Palestinian political scene, focusing on the schism between Hamas and Fatah, the efforts to form a new PA government, and internal Fatah dynamics. He also laid out steps necessary to move the peace process forward.

Israeli Arabs blast plan for PA to cede Temple Mount sovereignty
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Aluf Benn, Avi Issacharoff, Jack Khoury, Barak Ravid - May 21, 2009 - 12:00am

The northern branch of the Islamic Movement blasted Thursday a proposal for the Palestinian Authority to relinquish sovereignty over the Temple Mount in exchange for international Islamic control of the site. "The proposal to transfer sovereignty to a third state stems from the attempted to internationalize the Al Aqsa Mosque, and actually this is a proposal whose significance is the continuation of the occupation; therefore, such a proposal must be aggressively rejected," the Israeli Arab group said in a statement.

A friend of Israel
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Gideon Levy - (Opinion) May 21, 2009 - 12:00am

It's already clear: the U.S. president is a great friend of Israel. If Barack Obama continues what he started this week, he might prove to be the friendliest president to Israel ever. Richard Nixon saved Israel from the Arab states in 1973, and Obama is about to save Israel from itself. Nixon sent us arms and ammunition at a critical time, and Obama is sending us, at a time no less critical, the substance of a complete peace plan, a plan that would save Israel.

American Task Force on Palestine - 1634 Eye St. NW, Suite 725, Washington DC 20006 - Telephone: 202-262-0017