Middle East News: World Press Roundup

A New York Times editorial stresses the need for serious and sustained U.S. engagement at the Annapolis meeting and beyond if there is to be any chance of an Israeli-Palestinian peace settlement (1.) A Washington Post opinion by Robert Novak contrasts the former President Carter's 'clarity' on the Palestinian issue with that of President Bush and Congress (3.) The Christian Science Monitor examines how the deployment of Palestinian police in Nablus is a test of the ability of the Palestinian president and could bolster his position in upcoming talks with Israelis (5.) The Guardian (UK) reports on the campaign by the Palestinian Authority (PA) to prevent clerics affiliated with Hamas from preaching dissent at West Bank mosques (8.) The Independent (UK) reports from Nablus on reaction to the deployment of PA forces in an effort to improve security (10.) A Gulf News (UAE) editorial urges that the upcoming Annapolis meeting address the 'core issues' if there is to be any serious progress towards peace (11.) A Haaretz (Israel) opinion by Akiva Eldar makes the case for a nuclear-free Middle East (12.)

In Mideast, Rice Pushes Annapolis Talks
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Washington Post
by Karen Deyoung - November 5, 2007 - 2:23pm

Israel is ready to put "all basic questions, all the substantive problems, all the historical questions" about Palestinian statehood on the table in a U.S.-hosted peace conference later this month in Annapolis, Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said Sunday. "It is time," Olmert said in an impassioned speech. "All questions are on the agenda. We won't run away from any of them."

Restive Nablus Challenges Fatah's Abbas
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Christian Science Monitor
by Joshua Mitnick - November 5, 2007 - 2:25pm

Over the course of the second Palestinian intifada, this city became the West Bank's capital for car thefts, kidnappings, and suicide bombers. Now, with 300 security officers from the Palestinian Authority (PA) freshly deployed around Nablus, the city has become a testing ground for an embattled Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas.

Rice Seeks Mideast Peace Deal While Bush In Office
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Reuters
by Sue Pleming - November 5, 2007 - 2:27pm

Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice joined Israeli and Palestinian leaders on Monday in voicing hope they could reach a peace agreement before President George W. Bush leaves office in January 2009. But wrapping up two days of talks in the region, she again gave no date for a U.S.-led conference which all parties have said would serve as a launching pad for statehood negotiations. Rice said only that the meeting, in Annapolis, Maryland, would take place "before the end of the year."

Rice Expects Little From Mideast Trip
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Los Angeles Times
by Ashraf Khalil - November 5, 2007 - 2:28pm

Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice returned to Israel on Sunday for the third time in six weeks, seeking to nudge the Israeli and Palestinian sides before an upcoming U.S.-sponsored peace conference. But after a day of meetings with Israeli officials, including Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, Rice acknowledged that her two-day visit was unlikely to get the two sides to agree on the joint pre-conference statement of goals that the U.S. has sought.

Fatah Targets Mosques In Latest Anti-hamas Campaign
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Guardian
by Rory Mccarthy - November 5, 2007 - 2:30pm

The Palestinian Fatah-led government has mounted a crackdown on preachers from the rival Hamas movement, arresting or sacking clerics accused of spreading political dissent. The Fatah campaign, which is being enforced across the West Bank, is a reaction to the violent Hamas takeover of Gaza in June and marks a widening divide between the two factions and territories.

Jerusalem Diary: Monday 5 November
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Bbc News
by Tim Franks - November 5, 2007 - 2:32pm

DIRECTING THE POLICE DIRECTING THE TRAFFIC There may not be many well-paid jobs in the occupied territories. But there are plenty of policemen and security officers. They were on the streets of Nablus in the West Bank the other day, waving furiously at the traffic. They were trying to ensure that the path was clear for Gen Keith Dayton, the US point man in the region, whose job is to help knock the Palestinian security forces into better shape.

New Palestinian Police Force Makes Tense Debut In West Bank
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Independent
by Donald Macintyre - November 5, 2007 - 2:36pm

camp excitedly mobbed the armed, olive-uniformed officers from the second special brigade of the National Security force, deployed with their soft-top Jeeps across the road for the first time. They crowded round the blue and white patrol car driven by Major Eyad Shteyer, the city's deputy police chief, thrusting their hands through an open window in friendly greeting.

Rice's Visit Won't Bring Change
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Gulf News
(Editorial) November 5, 2007 - 2:37pm

As US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice begins yet another visit to the region, the purposefulness of such visits comes into serious question. Tackling the differences between the Palestinians and the Israelis is something that could be done only by addressing the real issue.

No Exceptions
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Akiva Eldar - (Opinion) November 5, 2007 - 2:38pm

How can a country, which according to endless foreign reports has kept secret for years several atomic weapons, manage to rally the international community in a struggle against a neighboring country that insists on acquiring nuclear energy? What do Israeli politicians answer to those asking why Iran should not be allowed to acquire the same armaments that are already in the arsenals of neighboring countries, like Pakistan and India?

Pm Slams Israel Rightists' Provocation Over Peace
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Reuters
by Joseph Nasr - November 6, 2007 - 12:44pm

Prime Minister Ehud Olmert vowed on Monday to fight violent "incitement" by Israeli groups opposed to his efforts to negotiate with the Palestinians and said he was ready to make "painful concessions" to secure peace. His speech, heavy with memories of violence within Israeli society, was a reaction to displays of hostility that marked Sunday's 12th anniversary of the assassination of Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, who was shot by a Jew angry at his peace efforts.

Abbas Sees Palestinian State Soon Achievable
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Washington Post
by Karen Deyoung - November 6, 2007 - 12:45pm

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas said Monday that he believes the path to peace with Israel is now clear and that a Palestinian state can be achieved before the end of the Bush administration in January 2009.

Repeating The Same Mistakes
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Bitterlemons
by Ghassan Khatib - (Opinion) November 6, 2007 - 12:56pm

The Syrian connection to the current American initiative on the Middle East to convene a political meeting at Annapolis in the autumn is a good illustration of its deteriorating value.

Fatah And Hamas: The Division Continues…
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Asharq Alawsat
by Kifah Zaboun - November 6, 2007 - 12:58pm

When Hamas seized control of the Gaza Strip last June; it emerged as a strong victorious army while Fatah was weak and defeated. Palestinians were awestruck by the force and speed of Hamas’s military takeover and believed that the already fragmented Fatah had been dealt a severe blow from which it would not recover. Meanwhile, others believed that the Gaza takeover represented the deadly blow for the victorious Hamas, which had fallen into the Gaza trap.

Analysis: Rice's Shuttle Diplomacy
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from World Peace Herald
by Claude Salhani - (Blog) November 8, 2007 - 3:30pm

U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has borrowed a chapter or two from Henry Kissinger's book of applied negotiations as she headed back out to the Middle East for her eighth visit to the region in the last six months. 

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