Analysis: Iran, Palestinian talks, Netanyahu ties to dominate Obama trip to Israel
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Associated Press
(Analysis) March 11, 2013 - 12:00am


Three goals will dominate President Barack Obama’s coming visit to Israel, his first as president: Convincing Israel and its leadership he means what he says about stopping Iran from building a nuclear weapon, mending a deeply troubled relationship with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and, in return, enticing Israel back to negotiations with the Palestinians.


Obama's new approach to Mideast peace: Israel and Palestinians must lead, not the U.S.
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Barak Ravid - (Opinion) March 10, 2013 - 1:00am


For the past month the White House has been lowering expectations regarding U.S. President Barack Obama’s upcoming visit to Jerusalem and Ramallah.


The Region: Obama: Bad president, good for Israel?
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
by Barry Rubin - (Opinion) March 10, 2013 - 1:00am


I have just returned from briefing a high-ranking official of country X on the Middle East. We kept coming back to a vital theme: the incredibly shrinking power of the United States. Try to explain American behavior to neutral, open-minded third parties for whom US policy activities have become just plain bizarre! I have just published an article about how terrorists, including the murderers of four American officials in Benghazi, are literally laughing at the United States and its inability (or unwillingness) to do anything effective to defend its interests.


Obama: No 'grand peace plan' during Israel trip
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Associated Press
by Julie Pace - March 8, 2013 - 1:00am


President Barack Obama is playing down expectations for a Mideast peace breakthrough during his upcoming trip to Israel, telling American Jewish leaders that he won't be carrying a "grand peace plan" when he arrives in the region later this month.


Obama meets US Jewish leaders ahead of Israel trip
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
March 8, 2013 - 1:00am


US President Barack Obama hosted leaders of major American Jewish organizations at the White House on Thursday as he sought to smooth the way for his first presidential visit to Israel later this month. The meeting was a chance for Obama to preview his agenda for the trip, including the Iran nuclear standoff, Syria's civil war and Israel-Palestinian issues, and to reiterate his "unshakable support" for Israel, an administration official said.


US defers activist's award amid anti-Semitic tweets
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
by Hilary Leila Krieger - March 8, 2013 - 1:00am


The US State Department is holding off on presenting a prestigious award to Egyptian activist Samira Ibrahim after anti-US and anti- Semitic tweets from her Twitter account were uncovered. “After careful consideration, we’ve decided we should defer presenting this award to Ms. Ibrahim this year so that we have a chance to look further into these statements,” State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland told reporters Thursday.


Palestinian leadership not to revive peace talks before Obama's visit: official
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Xinhua
March 6, 2013 - 1:00am


The Palestinian leadership has no intentions to revive peace talks with Israel ahead of U.S. President Barack Obama's Middle East trip this month, a Palestinian official said Wednesday. "The Palestinian-U.S. contacts to prepare for Obama's visit were limited to explaining the Palestinian position and the requirements of resuming peace process," said Mohammed Ishteya, a member of the Palestinian negotiating team.


Obama is promoting, not proposing, peace
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
by Douglas Bloomfield - (Opinion) March 6, 2013 - 1:00am


resident Barack Obama plans to go to the Middle East in two weeks, and the Israeli Left and the Palestinians are praying he’ll be bringing an American peace initiative. Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and the Israeli Right are praying he won’t. Even if he wanted to, President Obama knows another US peace push wouldn’t work. All the rhetoric aside – and it really is little more than rhetoric – neither side is interested in, much less ready for, serious peace talks.


Kerry's Impromptu Meeting With Abbas
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Daily Beast
by Andrea Stone - March 5, 2013 - 1:00am


John Kerry’s unscheduled meeting with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas Monday during his first official trip abroad was anything but a rogue moment for the new secretary of State.


Hamas as ‘terrorist’ organization hampers peace process: James Baker
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Al-Arabiya
March 5, 2013 - 1:00am


One solution to promote peace between Palestinians and Israelis is to have non-Hamas members from the Gaza Strip negotiating peace, a former U.S. official told Al Arabiya. “Israel and the United States will not work with Hamas because it is seen to be a terrorist organization,” James Baker, who served as the Chief of Staff in the final year of the administration of President George H.W. Bush said.



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