The Gaza-west Bank Divide
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Israel Policy Forum
(Editorial) November 16, 2007 - 4:10pm

It is now three years since Yassir Arafat’s death on November 11, 2004, and a good time to evaluate the prospects for Palestinian statehood. Perhaps the best evaluation has been provided by Arafat’s successor.

Economic Woes Behind New Unrest In Gaza
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Associated Press
by Karin Laub - November 14, 2007 - 12:38pm

The backdrop to the latest explosion of violence in the Gaza Strip: skeletons of unfinished apartment towers, shuttered factories, empty store shelves and skyrocketing prices for bread and cigarettes. Five months of rule by the Islamic militants of Hamas and isolation from the world have taken a heavy toll on the already impoverished territory, and frustration over the hardship helped drive this week's mass rally by the rival Fatah movement that ended in mayhem.

From Payer To Player In The Middle East
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Daily Star
by El - Hassan Bin Talal - (Commentary) November 1, 2007 - 2:45pm

The European Union's policy in the Middle East is the litmus test of its common foreign and security policy. Many Europeans share this belief, but, as the EU considers entering the fray of Middle East peace talks, it must respond to former Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's jibe that in the region "you are payers, not players."

Mideast: Replying To Rockets, Israel Chokes Gaza
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Inter Press Service (IPS)
by Peter Hirschberg - October 31, 2007 - 5:18pm

Israel has begun limiting fuel supplies to Gaza as part of punitive measures it is implementing in an attempt to stem the firing of rockets by militants from the coastal strip into Israel. But Palestinian leaders and human rights groups are warning the move could spark a humanitarian crisis.

Clarity From Experienced Public Servants
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Daily Star
by Rami Khouri - (Opinion) October 24, 2007 - 2:44pm

It is very refreshing when law, international responsibility and human courage converge in the remarks or actions of a single person. This occurred earlier this month in New Zealand in a talk by Karen Abuzayd, commissioner general of UNRWA, the United Nations agency that provides humanitarian aid and basic social services to Palestinian refugees. She made a few points that are noteworthy precisely because international officials rarely speak with such clarity, moral force and political urgency. I quote her at length for the pertinence of her remarks:

Fatah: The 'moderate' Alternative?
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Miftah
by Caelum Moffatt - (Opinion) October 23, 2007 - 10:57am

Recently, President Mahmoud Abbas urged the PLO Central Council to support his decision to call early elections. The usually composed Fatah leader showed signs of agitation in his address, directing his words towards his rivals Hamas, the victors of the bloody battle for Gaza over a month ago. ‘We will not wait for approval from those sitting over there in Gaza or from those sitting abroad…Hamas dug their own grave with their own nails as a result of the crimes they carried out in Gaza.’

Abbas Insists No Dialogue With Hamas
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Agence France Presse (AFP)
October 22, 2007 - 2:51pm

Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas on Wednesday insisted there would be no dialogue with Hamas until the Islamists return Gaza to his legitimate authority after seizing the territory in June. “What Hamas did was a destructive operation which helped those who don’t want to see an independent Palestinian state,” Abbas told journalists after talks with Eygptian President Hosni Mubarak in the Egyptian port of Alexandria.

Palestine: A Policy Of Deliberate Blindness
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Le Monde Diplomatique
by Régis Debray - (Opinion) October 22, 2007 - 2:49pm

Dennis Ross, formerly the United States envoy to the Middle East, admitted back in 2000 that mistakes had been made in the 1978 Camp David accords: the diplomatic process had not taken enough account of developments on the ground, especially the settlements. The number of Jewish settlers in the Palestinian territories doubled from 1994 to 2000. As many Israelis have settled in the West Bank since the Oslo accords of 1993 as in the previous 25 years. With an international conference again being discussed, it would be a mistake to continue to ignore the real state of affairs.

Gaza Jobs Meltdown: An Ice-cream Firm's Tale
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Christian Science Monitor
by Dan Murphy - October 22, 2007 - 11:34am

When the mercury soars and the cloying humidity of the Mediterranean coast makes heading outside a shirt-drenching ordeal, Mazen Masri is usually one of the few Gazans wearing a smile. But today, Mr. Masri casts a dejected look around his mostly idle ice-cream factory. "This should be the best time of our year," he says. "But I go into the factory and my heart almost breaks."

A Sort Of Peace In Gaza
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Time
by Andrew Lee Butters - October 22, 2007 - 10:57am

On Patrol in Shijaiyah, the toughest neighborhood in Gaza City, Lieut. Naim Ashraf Mushtaha, 31, an officer of the Hamas Executive Force, spots a man in civilian clothes carrying an M-16 assault rifle and walking through the street suqs in broad daylight. His officers quickly encircle the suspect and demand that he identify himself and turn over the weapon. The man turns out to be a member of one of the neighborhood's most powerful clans, and he refuses to give up his gun. "What's my name, boys?" he shouts to the gathering crowd of curious onlookers.

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