Middle East News: World Press Roundup

NEWS: Israeli Arab Bedouins are angered by the torching of a mosque. Pres. Abbas urges more European support for Palestine. Former Pres. Carter says Pres. Obama should earn his Nobel Peace Prize by crafting Israeli-Palestinian peace. There is more cooperation between Israel and Hamas than either admits. The PA accuses Israeli occupation forces of protecting violent settlers, and the Israeli NGO B'Tselem agrees. COMMENTARY: Yoel Marcus says it's only a matter of time before PM Netanyahu looses power. Nehemia Shtrasler says Hanan Porat was the architect of a settlement strategy designed to make it impossible for any Israeli government to withdraw from the occupied territories. Yishai Rosen-Zvi says the near-lynching of leftists in Israel is alarming. Uri Savir says peace is the only way to avoid disaster in a changing Middle East. Larry Derfner says Congress' threat to cut aid to the PA would only reduce US influence. Joseph Dana and Omar Rahman look at what comes next following the Palestinian UN statehood bid. Amir Taheri says Palestine must decide if it wants to be a cause or a state. Ronen Bergman recounts the founding of Israel and the role of the UN. Colum Lynch looks at Congressional threats to defund UNESCO and other UN agencies that upgrade the status of Palestine. Zvika Krieger says Israel does not want the US to defund UN agencies that work with the Palestinians. Israeli reservists are summoned for a surprise drill. Swedish academics call for a boycott of Israeli institutions due to the occupation. Palestinians are already feeling the effect of cuts in US aid.

Ties Between Israel and Arab Allies Fray Over Mosque Burning
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The New York Times
by Isabel Kershner - October 7, 2011 - 12:00am

The founders of this Bedouin Arab village in the Israeli countryside tied their fate to that of their Jewish neighbors even before the establishment of the Israeli state in 1948. Israeli police officers fired tear gas at residents of the village protesting the arson attack.

Abbas urges Europe: Support Palestinian spring
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
October 7, 2011 - 12:00am

President Mahmoud Abbas told the Council of Europe on Thursday that security is created through peace, and not force. Addressing the council's parliamentary assembly in Strasbourg, Abbas appealed to Europe to support Palestine's bid for full UN membership, which is under review by a Security Council standing committee. "Today we are at the heart of the Arab spring: we say that the hour of the Palestinian spring has struck," he told European parliamentarians. "You supported the Arab spring which was seeking democracy and freedom," he said.

Carter: Obama must make good on Nobel Prize and back Palestinian statehood
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
October 7, 2011 - 12:00am

U.S. President Barack Obama needs to make good on the promises that won him the Nobel Peace Prize, fellow laureate and former U.S. president Jimmy Carter said on Thursday. Carter called on the current American president to back the Palestinian’s bid to the UN for statehood and seize the opportunity provided by the Arab Spring to facilitate Palestinian-Israeli peace.

Hamas, Israel's enemy or economic partner?
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Amos Harel, Avi Issacharoff - October 7, 2011 - 12:00am

The line of trucks at the entry to Kerem Shalom, the southern crossing point into the Gaza Strip, is more than a kilometer long. The trucks, mostly from Israel and some from the West Bank, carry a variety of goodies: equipment from the German company Siemens for Gaza's power station, boxes of soft drinks, sacks of cement. North of the crossing point, on the Israeli side, renovation work to expand the terminal continues energetically, at an estimated cost of some NIS 100 million.

PA official: IDF protects settlers who attack Palestinians
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
by Khaled Abu Toameh - October 7, 2011 - 12:00am

The IDF dismissed accusations by the Palestinian Authority that it was protecting settlers who attack Palestinians and/or their property in the West Bank as ridiculous on Thursday. “It is both baseless and ridiculous to say the IDF is supporting such activity,” an army source said. “The IDF together with other law enforcement bodies constantly work to prevent and investigate unlawful activities in the West Bank, whether they are perpetuated by Palestinians or Israelis,” the sources said.

B'Tselem: Israeli govt responsible for Qusra attacks
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
October 7, 2011 - 12:00am

Israeli authorities are failing to stop settler attacks on Nablus village Qusra, which has faced a repeated campaign of harassment from Israeli settlers, an Israeli rights group said on Thursday. Israeli settlers uprooted 200 olive trees in the south of the village overnight Wednesday. Israeli organization B'Tselem said due to a new Israeli army post overlooking the valley, "the attack occurred in an open area with excellent visibility."

Israeli reservists called up for surprise pre-Yom Kippur drill
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Jewish Telegraphic Agency (JTA)
October 7, 2011 - 12:00am

The Israeli military called up reservists for a surprise drill on the 38th anniversary of the start of the Yom Kippur War. Two reserve divisions in central and northern Israel were mobilized Wednesday evening and participated in the exercise until Thursday afternoon, according to reports. The exercise was held due to events in the region, Ynet reported. The divisions were declared to be ready by military officials. Lt.-Gen. Benny Gantz, the Israeli military's chief of staff, observed the exercise.

Swedish academics call for boycott of Israeli institutions
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Jewish Telegraphic Agency (JTA)
October 7, 2011 - 12:00am

More than 200 professors and students from Sweden have signed on to a call for an academic boycott of Israeli institutions. The boycott petition was initiated by the Action Group for the Boycott of Israel at the Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm.

Palestinians Feel Effects Of Frozen U.S. Aid
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from National Public Radio (NPR)
by Sheera Frenkel - October 7, 2011 - 12:00am

The Obama administration is urging Congress to rescind a decision blocking some aid to the Palestinians. The congressional decision to put a hold on $200 million of aid money was prompted by the Palestinian Authority's bid for statehood recognition at the United Nations —something both the administration and Congress oppose. The funding cut is already having an impact in the Palestinian territories.

It's only a matter of time until Netanyahu falls
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Yoel Marcus - (Opinion) October 7, 2011 - 12:00am

Something bad happens to us during the holiday period. Not only is work not work, not only is it unclear what's open and what's closed and whether the clock is showing summer time or winter time - official intelligence also goes on vacation. You have to be emptyheaded in order to get to a situation in which German Chancellor Angela Merkel - the only leader in Europe, if not in the entire world, who treats us with understanding and empathy - loses trust and is disappointed in our prime minister.

The settler leader who led Israelis to disaster
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Nehemia Shtrasler - (Opinion) October 7, 2011 - 12:00am

There were so many accolades and so much praise that I found myself getting confused. Was this the same Hanan Porat that I also knew? True, he was an idealist, and charismatic, and modest, and he always said what he felt in his heart. True, also, that he was the great leader of Gush Emunim. But we must not forget, and this is the tragic part of the story, that his biggest success - covering the West Bank with a carpet of Israeli settlements - was also the greatest disaster that befell the people of Israel.

Lynch the leftists
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ynetnews
by Yishai Rosen-Zvi - (Opinion) October 7, 2011 - 12:00am

So what happened around here this past week? Tnuva’s chairwoman quit, Merkel was insulted, the Quartet is nagging, and, oh yeah, some leftists were beaten up. No big deal. How easy it is to get used to it. And how much they help us get used to it.

It’s about peace
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
by Uri Savir - (Opinion) October 7, 2011 - 12:00am

We are inundated with analysis in these days of soul-searching, regarding all the important issues that determine our well-being as a country in crisis in a tumultuous Middle East. Everyone seems to have a recipe for a better tomorrow. For Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu the magic wand is better hasbara – if we would just succeed to tell the world the “truth,” we would convince it to support Israel, except for Muslims and anti-Semites of course. From foreign policy to speechology.

Congress Shows Lack of Leverage With Threat To Cut Off Aid
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jewish Daily Forward
by Larry Derfner - (Opinion) October 7, 2011 - 12:00am

As an Israeli who sees the occupation as a plague both on Palestinians and on Israelis, I think it’s a good thing that Congress just held back $200 million in economic aid to the Palestinians as punishment for their statehood bid at the United Nations. It’s a good thing, because now that the Republican Party (and much of the Democratic Party) is indistinguishable from Likud USA, American involvement only makes the Israeli-Palestinian conflict worse, so the less influence America has over here, the better.

The long road ahead for Palestine's statehood aspiration
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The National
by Joseph Dana, Omar Rahman - October 7, 2011 - 12:00am

On September 23, Mahmoud Abbas, the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) chairman and PA president, officially submitted Palestine's application for full membership in the United Nations, with a bold speech delivered to the General Assembly. During the address, cities throughout the West Bank were alight with excitement. Young and old celebrated almost as if the UN had already granted Palestine full membership to the international governing body.

Palestine: A Cause or a State?
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Asharq Alawsat
by Amir Taheri - October 7, 2011 - 12:00am

Within days, the United Nations’ Security Council is expected to start debating the Palestinian Authority’s demand for recognition as a state. At first glance, this is a straightforward issue. Since its foundation after the Second World War, the UN has admitted as member over 150 countries. There is no reason why the Palestinian demand should pose problems.

A State is Born in Palestine
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The New York Times
by Ronen Bergman - (Opinion) October 7, 2011 - 12:00am

Sixty-four years ago, in August 1947, the United Nations Special Committee on Palestine presented to the General Assembly a startling and unexpected report, calling for an end to the British Mandate of Palestine and division of most of the territory into two independent states, with the Jewish state occupying the majority of the land. What came next, of course, is well known — a vote in the General Assembly on Nov. 29, 1947, in favor of partition, and the war that immediately followed.

Standing up for the Palestinians just got a lot more expensive
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Foreign Policy
by Colum Lynch - (Blog) October 6, 2011 - 12:00am

The U.N. Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization's 58 member executive board voted on Wednesday to recommend the Palestinians as a new member, setting the stage for a high-stakes vote on the Palestinians admission later this month. But U.S. law prohibits funding for U.N. bodies that grant membership to entities without "internationally recognized attributes of statehood."

Does Israel Actually Want the U.S. to Defund the UN?
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Atlantic
by Zvika Krieger - (Opinion) October 6, 2011 - 12:00am

One of the many effects of the Palestinians' bid for statehood at the United Nations is a renewed campaign for the U.S. to withdraw its financial support of the institution and downgrade its engagement. "I would tell the other 190-plus members of the United Nations: If you vote for a declaration of Palestinian statehood, the United States will defund the United Nations, period, close quote," Bush-era UN ambassador John Bolton recently said on Fox News.

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