Obama in Israel: Can he overcome low expectations?
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Los Angeles Times
by Yisrael Medad - (Editorial) March 8, 2013 - 1:00am


Later this month, President Obama will visit Israel, a country intended by an act of international law to be the reconstituted Jewish national home. The visit will be highly charged, but at the same time, many Israelis have low expectations for what could come of it.


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.


Israel's Dreaded Tipping Point Has Finally Arrived
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Atlantic
by S. Daniel Abraham - (Editorial) March 8, 2013 - 1:00am


As President Obama prepares to visit Israel later this month, reports from administration officials indicate that he does not intend to focus on resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, but rather to discuss regional threats such as Iran's pursuit of nuclear weapons and the continuing violence in Syria. But Obama should realize that Israel's continued presence in the West Bank is an existential threat to its continuity as a democratic, Jewish state -- and time is not on Israel's side.


Israeli-Palestinian peace - the hidden agenda item
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Hill
by Alan Elsner - (Opinion) March 8, 2013 - 1:00am


This week, some 13,000 pro-Israel advocates in town to attend the annual AIPAC policy conference fanned out across Capitol Hill to lobby their congressional representatives to tighten sanctions against Iran and designate Israel as a “major strategic partner” of the United States. Curiously missing from the list was any mention of Israeli-Palestinian peace, which is a vital interest for the United States, but more importantly the single most important guarantor of Israel’s future as a democratic Jewish state.


Savir's Corner: The day after
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
by Uri Savir - (Editorial) March 7, 2013 - 1:00am


With the historic visit of President Barack Obama to Israel, the Palestinian Authority and Jordan at the end of the month, it seems that leaders in our region are thinking along the lines of “life before Obama” and “life after Obama.” One can safely assume that both Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and PA President Mahmoud Abbas cannot wait for the day the American president returns to Washington.


Obama to Jews: Peace is essential but prospects are bleak
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Jewish Telegraphic Agency (JTA)
by Ron Kampeas - March 7, 2013 - 1:00am


President Obama believes prospects for Israeli-Palestinian peace are “bleak,” but he still will urge both sides to avoid unilateral actions that might further damage a process he hopes will be back on track within a year. That was the message Obama delivered Thursday in a meeting with about 25 Jewish community figures at the White House to discuss his planned trip to Israel later this month. Obama was especially engaged, participants said, when it came to discussing how he might best convey to the Israeli people his enthusiasm for Israel and its Jewish history.


Carl Levin won’t run again
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Jewish Telegraphic Agency (JTA)
March 7, 2013 - 1:00am


Sen. Carl Levin (D-Mich.), a veteran Jewish lawmaker who had major influence on defense policy, will not seek reelection. Levin, 78, was quoted Thursday by The Associated Press as saying that his decision was "extremely difficult" but that he wanted to serve out the remainder of his term, which ends in 2014, without "distraction." Levin heads the Senate's Armed Services Committee, and in that capacity has been influential in defense policy, helping to maintain record levels of defense assistance for Israel.


Obama will not address Knesset during upcoming visit
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
by Lahav Harkov - March 7, 2013 - 1:00am


US President Barack Obama will not speak in the Knesset on his visit to Israel later this month, a senior Knesset source said on Wednesday. According to the source, requests for Obama to address the Israeli people in its representative body were rejected, and the Knesset is not preparing for him to give a speech in the plenum. Obama plans to visit Israel on March 20.


Why Barack Obama Must Go to Rabin Square
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jewish Daily Forward
by Liam Hoare - (Opinion) March 7, 2013 - 1:00am


When President Obama’s itinerary for his upcoming Israel trip was leaked to the press, it appeared to be noticeably safe. It is true that Obama will make a number of important gestures during the visit, chief among them laying wreathes in the Hall of Remembrance at Yad Vashem, as well as on the graves of Theodor Herzl and Yitzhak Rabin. But over the course of his 48-hour stay, Obama will remain mostly in Jerusalem, leaving only to have coffee with Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah and to visit an Iron Dome battery.



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