Middle East News: World Press Roundup

Thomas Friedman says events in Egypt make Israeli-Palestinian peace more urgent than ever. Yossi Klein Halevi says Israelis fear a Muslim Brotherhood take-over of Egypt. Michael Weiss criticizes the Guardian’s handling of the “Palestine papers.” Palestinians are not allowed to rally on Egypt anywhere as Hamas brakes up a pro-Egyptian protesters rally in Gaza. The PA says it intends to hold local elections soon. Palestinians urge the Quartet to back statehood. Mike Huckabee says there should be no Palestinian state. The Arab League postpones a conference on Jerusalem due to unrest in Arab states. Israel urges the West to ensure that any new Egyptian government honors the peace treaty. Hamas is worried unrest will spill over into Gaza. Muslim leaders visit Auschwitz. The Knesset decides to investigate NGOs. An Israeli soldier criticizes his country’s occupation policies. American supporters of Israel face a dilemma on Egyptian protests. Guyana and Suriname are the latest South American states to recognize Palestine in its 1967 borders.

B.E., Before Egypt. A.E., After Egypt.
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The New York Times
by Thomas L. Friedman - (Editorial) February 1, 2011 - 1:00am

I’m meeting a retired Israeli general at a Tel Aviv hotel. As I take my seat, he begins the conversation with: “Well, everything we thought for the last 30 years is no longer relevant.”

Israel, Alone Again?
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The New York Times
by Yossi Klein Halevi - (Editorial) February 1, 2011 - 1:00am

ISRAELIS want to rejoice over the outbreak of protests in Egypt’s city squares. They want to believe that this is the Arab world’s 1989 moment. Perhaps, they say, the poisonous reflex of blaming the Jewish state for the Middle East’s ills will be replaced by an honest self-assessment.

The Real 'Palestine Papers' Scandal
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Wall Street Journal
by Michael Weiss - (Editorial) February 1, 2011 - 1:00am

Last week Qatari broadcaster Al Jazeera and Britain's Guardian newspaper released a tranche of 1,600 documents that appear to consist of Palestinian negotiators' emails and meeting minutes covering the past 10 years of manic-depressive Arab-Israeli peace negotiations.

WEST BANK: Palestinians not allowed to show solidarity with Egyptians
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Los Angeles Times
by Maher Abukhater - (Blog) February 1, 2011 - 1:00am

For the mainstream Palestinian Authority in the West Bank and its archrival the Islamist Hamas, which has ruled the Gaza Strip since June 2007, the turmoil in Egypt is a source of concern. In the West Bank, the pro-West Palestinian Authority refused to give permission for Palestinians wishing to hold protests in support of the Egyptian uprising.

Police in Gaza break up Egypt solidarity rally
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
February 2, 2011 - 1:00am

Police in the Gaza Strip shut down a demonstration Monday in support of the uprising in Egypt. Activists said six women and eight men were arrested at a park in Gaza City, where a few dozen demonstrators had gathered. The women were released after a few hours. It was not immediately clear when the men were freed because they were separated, one of the protesters said. Asmaa Al-Ghoul, a Gaza-based journalist and writer, was among those detained.

PLO urges Quartet to back Palestinian state
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
February 2, 2011 - 1:00am

Chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erakat urged the Middle East Quartet on Tuesday to recognize a Palestinian state within 1967 borders when it meets later this week. "We call on the international Quartet take an historic decision to recognize the state of Palestine on the 1967 borders at its next meeting on February 5 in Munich," Erakat told AFP. "In order to bring security and stability in the Middle East, we must drain the swamp that is the Israeli occupation, which is the sole cause of all problems in the region," he said.

Fatah official: PA wants elections this year
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
February 2, 2011 - 1:00am

Now that leftist Palestinian factions have a court mandate forcing the government in Ramallah hold elections, Fatah and Hamas are back to bickering about how the vote might be held. Muhammad Al-Madani, member of the ruling Fatah’s main body, told Ma’an Tuesday evening that the Palestinian leadership planned to hold local elections in the summer and general elections by September.

Palestinians to hold municipal vote
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Associated Press
by Ben Hubbard - February 1, 2011 - 1:00am

The Western-backed Palestinian government in the West Bank said Tuesday it will hold local council elections "as soon as possible" — a surprise move reflecting fears that massive anti-government protests in Egypt could inspire unrest here, too. The announcement was one of many responses among the region's Western-backed governments — many with questionable legitimacy and limited popular support — to reduce the chances their own people will rise up against them.

Huckabee says no Palestinian state in West Bank
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Associated Press
by Aron Heller - February 1, 2011 - 1:00am

Potential 2012 U.S. presidential candidate Mike Huckabee said Tuesday that if Palestinians want an independent state, they should seek it from Arabs — not Israel. The evangelical minister and Fox News host said Jews should be allowed to settle anywhere throughout the biblical Land of Israel — an area that includes the West Bank and east Jerusalem. He called the demand on Israel to give up land for peace an "unrealistic, unworkable and unreachable goal."

AL postpones Jerusalem conference due to unrest in Arab countries
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Xinhua
February 1, 2011 - 1:00am

The Arab League (AL) decided Tuesday to postpone the "Jerusalem Conference" scheduled in Doha, Qatar early February to indefinite date due to the serious situation in Egypt and some other Arab countries. Mohammed Soubie, assistant of the AL general secretary, announced the postpone in a statement after a series of consultations between Qatar, the hosting country and the AL.

Israel urges West: Make sure new Egypt regime honors peace deal
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Barak Ravid - February 2, 2011 - 1:00am

Prime Minister wants international community to make clear that new leadership must meet a series of conditions similar to those posed by Hamas in order to gain recognition of legitimacy. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has asked U.S. President Barack Obama and a number of other Western leaders in recent days to make it clear to any new Egyptian regime that it must abide fully by the peace agreement with Israel.

Hamas worried upheaval in Arab world will spill into Gaza
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Avi Issacharoff - February 2, 2011 - 1:00am

Gaza police disperse rally showing solidarity with Egyptian protesters; several thousand join Facebook group calling for a protest against Hamas rule in the Strip. Hamas leaders in the Gaza Strip are concerned about the effects of the upheaval in the Arab world, as Facebook messages call on Gaza residents to demonstrate against Hamas rule on Friday.

Mideast Muslim dignitaries pay their respects at Auschwitz
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Associated Press
February 1, 2011 - 1:00am

In a bid to fight anti-Semitism and Holocaust denial, Muslim leaders from Morocco, Jordan, Turkey and Iraq join Rabbis and Christian representatives at Nazi death camp. n a bid to fight anti-Semitism and bridge cultural rifts, a large delegation of Muslim dignitaries visited Auschwitz on Tuesday to pay tribute to the millions of Jews and others who were systematically killed in the Holocaust. The group of some 150 people included representatives from Morocco, Jordan, Turkey and Iraq, as well as rabbis and Christian representatives.

Knesset House C'tee approves probes into leftist NGOs
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
by Rebecca Anna Stoil - February 2, 2011 - 1:00am

Move comes day after body's legal adviser says the inquiries raise questions at the heart of democratic rule. The Knesset's House Committee approved two parliamentary inquiries into leftist non-governmental organizations on Wednesday. One committee, headed by MK Danny Danon, would examine “the involvement of foreign bodies and states in funding activities against the state and attempting to acquire its land.” The second, headed by Fania Kirschenbaum, would probe “overseas funds and states funding Israeli organizations that participate in the delegitimization of IDF soldiers.”

I love my country
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ynetnews
by Noam Raz - (Opinion) February 2, 2011 - 1:00am

Op-ed: IDF soldier who serves as B’Tselem official explains why he criticizes Israel A volley of bullets tears through the quiet night. I’m in an IDF outpost opposite Tulkarm in the West Bank and the bullets ring out as they strike the outpost wall. Moments later, I find myself holding a grenade launcher – a weapon that fires dozens of grenades a minute, reaching as far as two kilometers away. I cock the launcher and, without giving it a second thought, open fire at houses in Tulkarm.

Dilemma of pro-Israel groups: To talk Egypt or not
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Jewish Telegraphic Agency (JTA)
by Ron Kampeas - February 1, 2011 - 1:00am

As Egypt convulses, pro-Israel groups and U.S. Congress members are seized by the ancient maternal dilemma: If you have nothing nice to say, should you say anything at all? The question of whether to stake a claim in the protests against 30 years of President Hosni Mubarak’s autocracy is a key one for the pro-Israel lobby and pro-Israel lawmakers because of the role they have played in making Egypt one of the greatest beneficiaries of U.S. aid.

Guyana recognises Palestinian state
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Caribbean News Now!
by Ray Chickrie - January 14, 2011 - 1:00am

Guyana has declared official recognition of a Palestinian State within the 1967 borders. In a news release, the Foreign Ministry said, “It is Guyana's hope that the increasing recognition of the state of Palestine will contribute to a resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and the creation of lasting peace and stability in the region.” Guyana since 1975 has been a member of the UN Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, and in the 1970s severed diplomat ties with Israel.

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