Middle East News: World Press Roundup

In the Christian Science Monitor, Joshua Mitnick discusses the removal of barriers in the West Bank (1). An opinion by Matthew Levitt in the Weekly Standard examines the message that former US President Jimmy Carter sent by meeting with Hamas (2). The relationship between the Israel-Palestine conflict and other regional conflicts is the subject of analysis in an opinion by Ghassan Khatib in BitterLemons(5). In the Daily Star, Rami Khouri argues that there are growing disparities in the Arab world (8). Shmuel Rosner looks at a new Jewish American alternative to AIPAC in Haaretz (11).

Abbas Says No Peace With Israel Unless All Prisoners Released
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Associated Press
April 17, 2008 - 5:46pm

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said in televised speech Thursday that a release of all Palestinian prisoners must be part of any peace deal with Israel. Abbas delivered the televised address Thursday to mark Palestinian Prisoners' Day. About 8,500 Palestinian prisoners are held in Israeli jails and detention centers. Israeli and Palestinian negotiators are trying to reach a peace deal by the end of the year.

Heavy Fighting In Gaza Casts Doubt On Egyptian-led Talks
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Associated Press
April 17, 2008 - 5:56pm

Gaza's worst day of violence in a month, in which at least 20 Palestinians and three Israeli soldiers died, appeared to jeopardize Egypt's efforts to mediate a Middle East cease-fire. Wednesday's death toll was the highest since a broad Israeli military offensive in early March that killed more than 120 Gazans, including dozens of civilians. Since then, Israel and Gaza's Hamas rulers appeared to be honoring an informal truce, though punctuated with Palestinian rocket attacks, some Israeli airstrikes and minor border skirmishes.

Gaza Op Possible After Bush Visit
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
by Herb Keinon - April 17, 2008 - 5:59pm

There is a heightened sense in the security establishment that a broad-scale ground incursion inside the Gaza Strip is necessary this summer to deal a severe blow to Hamas's infrastructure, sources in Jerusalem said Wednesday, following the death of three soldiers in a Gaza ambush.

The Gulf Is Not Persian
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
(Editorial) April 17, 2008 - 6:04pm

The foreign minister of the Sultanate of Oman, Yusef Bin Alawai Bin Abdulla, agreed to hold a short photo-op at the beginning of his meeting with Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni on Monday at the Sheraton Doha hotel. In the last eight years, since the Al-Aqsa intifada led to severing of relations between the two countries, Israeli and Omani foreign ministers have met mostly in secret, in European capitals or on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly.

Brothers At Bay
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Economist
(Analysis) April 17, 2008 - 6:05pm

Egypt's government battles with the Muslim Brotherhood

Jimmy Carter: A Fool On A Fool's Errand
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Daily Star
by Michael Young - (Opinion) April 17, 2008 - 6:06pm

Say what you will about Jimmy Carter, he has a way of transforming moments of plodding gravitas into uproarious comedy. Remember that moment during the 1980 Democratic convention when Carter stood up, and in a phrase paying tribute to Hubert Humphrey, instead praised "Hubert Horatio Hornblower," confusing the late vice president with the character from the C.S. Forester novels?

Mr. Zahar And Mr. Carter
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Washington Post
(Editorial) April 17, 2008 - 6:07pm

ON THE OPPOSITE page today we publish an article by the "foreign minister" of Hamas, Mahmoud al-Zahar, that drips with hatred for Israel, and with praise for former president Jimmy Carter. We believe Mr. Zahar's words are worth publishing because they provide some clarity about the group he helps to lead, a group that Mr. Carter contends is worthy of being included in the Middle East peace process. Mr. Carter himself is holding what appears to be a series of meetings with Hamas leaders during a tour of the Middle East.

No Peace Without Hamas
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Washington Post
by Mahmoud Al- Zahar - (Opinion) April 17, 2008 - 6:08pm

President Jimmy Carter's sensible plan to visit the Hamas leadership this week brings honesty and pragmatism to the Middle East while underscoring the fact that American policy has reached its dead end. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice acts as if a few alterations here and there would make the hideous straitjacket of apartheid fit better.

A Blast Still Reverberating
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Washington Post
by David Ignatius - (Opinion) April 17, 2008 - 6:10pm

It is April 18, 1983, and I am visiting the American Embassy in Beirut as a reporter for the Wall Street Journal. It is a coolish morning, a day to wear the winter-weight suit one last time. By the time I reach the embassy, a bright sun is beginning to cut the haze. Approaching the front entrance on the Corniche, grand and all but unguarded, I look across the shimmering Bay of Beirut to the slopes of Mount Lebanon, where there is still a trace of snow at the peak. The moist, sweet air of Lebanon is on my face like a phantom kiss.

What's Sauce For The Goose...
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Arabic Media Internet Network
by George S. Hishmeh - (Opinion) April 17, 2008 - 6:11pm

When told that the leaders of Germany, Britain and, most likely, France would boycott the opening Olympic ceremonies in Peking because of China's recent crackdown in Tibet, the US President George W. Bush's National Security Adviser, Stephen Hadley, described their decision as "a cop out" and offered a surprising response that seemed to run counter to the US stance in other regions, particularly the Middle East where some governments and groups remain untouchable.

Abbas Turns To Russia For Help
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Middle East Times
by Sana Abdallah - April 18, 2008 - 6:25pm

As fighting continues to rage in the Gaza Strip and progress bogs down in the U.S.-sponsored peace negotiations with Israel, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has turned to Russia for help. Abbas was in Moscow Thursday calling to convene a conference in the Russian capital "as soon as possible" because the Palestinian-Israeli peace negotiations that were re-launched at Annapolis in November were not moving forward.

Diplomacy, Carter-style
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jewish Daily Forward
(Editorial) April 21, 2008 - 5:59pm

Amateur historians like to say that Jimmy Carter is much better as an ex-president than he was as president. That gets his presidency about right; he’s usually ranked near the bottom, slightly ahead of Millard Fillmore but trailing Herbert Hoover.

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