Middle East News: World Press Roundup

The Washington Times looks at how Israeli leaders are reformulating the 'two-state' language to send out a political message before the Annapolis meeting regarding the Palestinian refugees and the nature of the Israeli state (2.) The Washington Post weighs the chances that the limited Palestinian prisoner release and the partial Israeli settlement freeze announcements will induce key Arab states to commit to attending the Annapolis meeting (4.) The Christian Science Monitor reports on how the breakdown of law and order in the occupied territories has reflected on the phenomenon of 'honor' killings (6.) The Forward looks at the division of labor over security in Nablus between the Palestinian police and the Israeli army (8.) A Jewish Telegraphic Agency opinion by Americans For Peace Now spokesperson Ori Nir ponders the absence of mainstream organized Jewish american support for the Annapolis meeting and Israeli-Palestinian peace (9.) The Independent (UK) examines continuing efforts to hammer out a joint Israeli-Palestinian declaration at Annapolis in the face of serious differences over the language (11.) BBC (UK) examines the Annapolis meeting will meet the fate of past failed meetings (13.) In BitterLemons (Israel/Palestine) former Palestinian minister of planning Ghassan Khatib is critical to the reference to the Roadmap regarding the Annapolis meeting, in light of the failure of both parties in the past to implement the agreement's responsibilities (15.) In his Haaretz (Israel) blog, Shmuel Rosner takes a close look at the results of the ADL survey on American attitudes to Israelis and Palestinians (16.)

Halting Steps Taken To Frame Mideast Talks
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The New York Times
by Isabel Kershner - November 20, 2007 - 1:38pm

Israeli and Palestinian leaders made new efforts on Monday toward preparing a joint statement before an international peace gathering planned for next week, but some issues have yet to be resolved, Israeli and Palestinian officials said. The Israeli prime minister, Ehud Olmert, and the Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas, met at the prime minister’s residence here to try to salvage efforts to agree on a short written text. The statement would be presented at the American-sponsored gathering tentatively scheduled for Nov. 26 and 27 in Annapolis, Md.

Israel Takes Steps To Attract Arab States To Peace Talks
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Washington Post
by Scott Wilson - November 20, 2007 - 1:39pm

Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, hoping to draw more Arab countries to a U.S.-sponsored peace conference this month, persuaded his cabinet Monday to endorse the release of hundreds of Palestinian prisoners and restated a pledge to stop building new Jewish settlements in the occupied territories.

As Order Slides, Palestinian Women Face Honor Killings
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Christian Science Monitor
by Ilene Prusher - November 20, 2007 - 1:42pm

QALQILYA, WEST BANK All the women in the family say Wafa Wahdan was wonderful. But her sisters-in-law add that they noticed a few little things. She had changed the way she dressed in the past year to a less conservative style and she sometimes went out for a drive without saying where she was going.

In Annapolis, A Middle East Peace Meeting Defined By Fear
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Baltimore Sun
by Trudy Rubin - (Opinion) November 20, 2007 - 1:43pm

Thirty years ago, on Nov. 19, 1977, I stood at Israel's Ben Gurion airport as Anwar el-Sadat's plane landed on the tarmac. The scene defied imagination, as the Egyptian leader embraced Israeli leaders. Hope was in the air. Suddenly, anything seemed possible. Mr. Sadat's bold move led to Israeli accords with Egypt and Jordan and the tantalizing hope of a deal with the Palestinians. But over the last seven years, the peace process has virtually collapsed.

Where Is Jewish Support For Annapolis?
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Jewish Telegraphic Agency (JTA)
by Ori Nir - (Opinion) November 20, 2007 - 1:47pm

The call for American Jewish organizations to support the current peace efforts came from an unexpected direction: Israel’s Chief Rabbi Yonah Metzger. For years closely associated with the right-wing National Religious Party, Metzger recently asked representatives of American Jewish groups in Washington to “influence the American administration” to do their utmost for the success of the Annapolis peace conference.

Negotiations On A Knife-edge Ahead Of Middle East Summit
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Independent
by Donald Macintyre - November 20, 2007 - 1:49pm

Israeli and moderate Palestinian leaders were last night struggling to agree a joint declaration intended to be the centrepiece of the international United States-convened Middle East summit less than a week away.

Will Annapolis Fail Like All The Others?
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Bbc News
by Paul Reynolds - November 20, 2007 - 1:50pm

A veteran reporter on the Middle East asked me the other day: "Is it too late?" We had been discussing the prospects for the meeting in Annapolis in the United States scheduled for next week at which the Israelis and Palestinians are supposed to commit themselves to reaching a peace agreement. My instinct was to agree with him. We had first met in Jerusalem in the mid 1980s and have followed the ups and downs of negotiations since. The experience has not made us optimists. Aims of Annapolis

Documentary On Carter Offers Insights Into A Great Man
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Arab News
by Ray Hanania - November 20, 2007 - 1:52pm

Even before anyone realized that Jimmy Carter’s book “Palestine: Peace not Apartheid” would stir up controversy and a lively but sometimes vicious debate, filmmaker Jonathan Demme decided to follow the former president during his book tour. Demme has produced a powerful documentary, “Jimmy Carter: A Man from Plains,” now showing in limited distribution in major cities around the country.

Fewer Americans Believe Israel Is Ready To Make Peace
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Shmuel Rosner - November 20, 2007 - 1:54pm

My New York-based colleague Shlomo Shamir (and other reporters in other news outlets), wrote yesterday about the new Anti Defamation League survey dealing with American attitudes toward Israel. "Majority of Americans are still strong supporters of Israel" was the headline. That is certainly true, and the poll is definitely positive. But not all of it is positive, and the numbers merit another look. So here it is:

The Annapolis Talks / Blaming The Other Guy
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Aluf Benn - November 20, 2007 - 1:55pm

Israeli-Palestinian disputes over the anticipated Annapolis declaration resemble theological disputes from the Middle Ages: Negotiators argue over whether the road map's first stage should be implemented sequentially or simultaneously, and whether disagreements should be resolved by a trilateral Israeli-Palestinian-American committee or a single American arbitrator.

How Rice Can Improve Her Odds
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from International Herald Tribune
by Daniel Kurtzer - November 22, 2007 - 10:31pm

Condoleezza Rice is playing a high-stakes game of diplomacy. After cautious bets during her first three years as secretary of state, she is going all-in on a summit meeting at Annapolis to launch final status negotiations. Her odds of winning are low, and she knows it. But those odds can start moving in her favor if she draws the right lessons from U.S. diplomatic experience in the Israeli-Arab peace process. Having led a study group on this for the past year, the results of which the United States Institute of Peace will soon publish, we can offer the following tips:

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