Prepared for the |
Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations
by the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs
View this page at www.dailyalert.org|
September 8, 2009
Russia, China Scuttle Bid for More Sanctions on Iran - Barak Ravid (Ha'aretz)
U.S. Ships Eye Missile Defense Role - Dan Williams (Reuters)
Australia to Deploy Israeli-Made UAVs in Afghanistan - Patrick Walters (The Australian)
Palestinian Woman Bitten by Snake, Israeli Settlers Blamed (Maan News-PA)
News Resources - North America, Europe, and Asia:
The head of the UN nuclear oversight agency, Mohamed ElBaradei, said Monday that his organization was in a "stalemate" with Iran over its nuclear program. He said Iran had not stopped enriching uranium or answered lingering questions about its nuclear program and urged Iran to "respond positively to the recent U.S. initiative" on a dialogue about nuclear issues. ElBaradei made clear that Iran had not complied with many of the agency's requests. Separately, he criticized Syria for refusing to disclose information about a suspected nuclear site bombed by Israel in 2007. (New York Times)
See also France Claims ElBaradei Left Out Evidence of Iran Bomb - Catherine Philp
France said IAEA head Mohamed ElBaradei's latest report on Iran's nuclear program omitted evidence that the agency had been given about an alleged covert weaponization plan. Bernard Kouchner, the French Foreign Minister, said that France had attended a technical briefing that addressed evidence that Iran may be building an atom bomb and was surprised to find it missing from the report. "In the annexes there are specifically elements which enable us to ask about the reality of an atomic bomb," he said. "There are issues of warheads, of transport." (Times-UK)
Three British Muslims were found guilty on Monday at Woolwich Crown Court of conspiracy to murder thousands of passengers and crew in an airline bomb plot. Abdulla Ahmed, Assad Sarwar and Tanvir Hussain were found guilty of plotting to use liquid bombs to blow up airliners en route from Heathrow to the U.S. Prosecutors said that the plot was largely run from Pakistan. The East London gang was arrested in August 2006.
The cell planned to smuggle home-made bombs disguised as soft drinks onto passenger jets run by United Airlines, American Airlines and Air Canada. The devices were to be assembled and detonated in mid-air by a team of suicide bombers. Seven flights to San Francisco, Toronto, Montreal, Washington, New York and Chicago had been singled out that departed within two-and-a-half hours of each other. Police believe an al-Qaeda bombmaker was responsible for the ingenious liquid bomb design. (Times-UK)
Defense Secretary Robert Gates urged U.S. allies in the Arab world to strengthen their military capabilities and defense cooperation with Washington as a means of pressuring Iran to back off its nuclear program. In an interview with Al Jazeera Monday, Gates said: "The more that our Arab friends and allies can strengthen their security capabilities, the more they can strengthen their co-operation, both with each other and with us, I think sends the signal to the Iranians that this path they're on is not going to advance Iranian security but in fact could weaken it." (AFP)
News Resources - Israel and the Mideast:
A moratorium on new construction in the settlements will last for six months, with an extension dependent on whether the Palestinian Authority and neighboring Arab countries deliver what is expected of them, a senior Israeli political official said Monday. The official said Israel expected that in return for the moratorium there would be an end to incitement against Israel in the PA media and education system as well as significant normalization steps from the Arab world. If these steps were not forthcoming, the source intimated, the construction moratorium would end.
Israel, according to the official, expected a number of Arab countries - such as Morocco, Qatar and Oman - to renew their former low-level presences in Israel, as well as allow for educational and cultural exchanges, and for Israeli airline flights over their territory. (Jerusalem Post)
A week after the first official meeting between an Israeli and Palestinian minister, which ended in a promise to continue to hold talks aimed at promoting economic peace, Palestinian Minister for National Economy Bassem Khoury announced there will be no more meetings until Israel complies with the Palestinian Authority's demands. During the first meeting, the two sides had worked on removing bureaucratic hurdles to economic development. (Ynet News)
Maj.-Gen. (res.) Yaakov Amidror, former head of the IDF's Research and Assessment Division, said Monday: "We have learned that the loss of control of territory and the creation of a border between the PA and an Arab state meant that there will be Katyusha rockets. Today, this is 100 times more true in regards to leaving Judea and Samaria [the West Bank] than it was in 1993."
Amidror said Israel must maintain control of the Jordan Valley to prevent arms smuggling and terrorist infiltration into the West Bank. He warned, "If we leave Judea and Samaria, Hamas will overthrow Fatah again. Fatah is so rotten that no amount of U.S. training of its security personnel will help. The threat will arrive at Tel Aviv's gate." (Jerusalem Post)
Global Commentary and Think-Tank Analysis (Best of U.S., UK, and Israel):
The question today is no longer whether the U.S. can still prevent the emergence of nuclear-armed regional adversaries, but instead, how to prevent them from being empowered by their nuclear weapons. Deterrence of nuclear use through the threat of retaliation - a mainstay of Cold War military strategy - is highly problematic with nuclear-armed regional adversaries. The reason is simple: These leaders may believe their sole chance of surviving is brandishing or using nuclear weapons. Indeed, they might choose to abstain from nuclear use only if they felt that course would enable them and their regimes to survive intact.
U.S. decision-makers in regional crises should seek to devise policy options that avoid putting the enemy leadership in a position where nuclear use seems to them to be the least bad option available. The writer is a political scientist at the RAND Corporation. (Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists)
One of the axioms of the "peace process" is that the settlements are "an obstacle to peace." It's well known, however, that before 1967 there were no settlements, and no peace. The Arabs are bothered by Jewish settlement in Israel in general. It's enough to browse through the books of the "moderate" Palestinian Authority to see that Haifa, Jaffa and even Tel Aviv are considered Palestinian cities, while Hamas believes all Palestine should be expropriated from the Jewish state, which doesn't have the right to land on either side of the "green line."
Only Jewish settlement activity can be enough of an incentive to make the Arabs, like Sadat, hurry up and seek peace, because their losses will multiply the longer they wait. The author is a professor of Islamic, Middle Eastern and Chinese history at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. (Ha'aretz)
What Carter Missed in the Middle East - Elliott Abrams (Washington Post)
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