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|
June 30, 2010
Report: PA to Receive 50 Russian Armored Troop Carriers (Maan News-PA)
Poll: Most Palestinians Won't Grant Legitimacy to Agreement with Israel in Proximity Talks (Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research)
Turkish Tourism Industry Incurs Losses with Israeli Cancellations - Dincer Gokce (Hurriyet Daily News-Turkey)
Palestinian Jailed by PA for Selling Land to Israel (Maan News-PA)
Weizmann Institute Ranked 2nd in "Best Places to Work in Academia" (Weizmann Institute)
News Resources - North America, Europe, and Asia:
President Obama met Saudi King Abdullah on Tuesday at the White House. They discussed the need for the Middle East peace process to move "forward in a significant and bold way," Obama said. With the Middle East peace process at an impasse, officials did not report breaking any new ground ahead of a meeting next Tuesday between Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. The White House said Obama and Abdullah did discuss "efforts to prevent violent extremism," what the Bush administration once called "radical Islam." (Washington Post)
See also Saudi Arabia Wants U.S. to Pressure Israel - Howard LaFranchi (Christian Science Monitor)
See also Saudi Textbooks: Still Teaching Hatred - Nina Shea and Bonnie Alldredge
Nearly two years after the deadline by which the Saudi kingdom's educational curriculum was to have been completely reformed, the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom told the president last week, "This promise remains unfulfilled." Saudi textbooks - used not only in Saudi Arabia but in Saudi-funded schools around the world - teach that Jews and Christians are "enemies," and they dogmatically instruct that various groups of "unbelievers" - apostates (which includes Muslim moderates who reject Saudi Wahhabi doctrine), polytheists (which includes Shiites), and Jews - should be killed.
Given that most of the 9/11 terrorists and bin Laden himself were Saudi-born and educated, it has to be acknowledged that Saudi education poses a direct danger to American national security. Nina Shea is director of the Hudson Institute's Center for Religious Freedom. Bonnie Alldredge is a research assistant at the center. (National Review)
Q: The Israeli security cabinet just voted to ease the three-year blockade on Gaza....What does that mean in practical terms?
Livni: The reason for the blockade on Gaza was not to punish the Palestinians but to continue to delegitimize Hamas. There is no hope for peace with Hamas, and we need to continue the peace process with the legitimate Palestinian government.
Q: Many Americans agree Hamas is a disaster, but might Israel do more to show concern for the Palestinian people and the problems they face?
Livni: I know that there is no humanitarian crisis.
Q: Why do you say that?
Livni: The crossings are open for humanitarian needs. I suggested in the past to put cameras online, on the Internet, for the world to see all the goods entering Gaza. This was my suggestion when I was foreign minister.
Q: You're the leader of the centrist Kadima Party, which is an opposition party. Yet you don't sound very opposed to the views of the ruling party.
Livni: On the right of Israel to exist and to defend itself, there is no opposition in Israel. (New York Times Magazine)
Hossein Mousavian, a former lead Iranian nuclear negotiator, has taken up residence at Princeton University, marking the highest-ranking member of Tehran's political elite to relocate to the U.S. since last year's political uprising against President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. He played a key role in the Iranian negotiating team that agreed in 2003 for Tehran to suspend the enrichment of uranium at its nuclear sites. He was briefly jailed in 2007 for alleged espionage, and was banned by Tehran from holding any diplomatic posts. U.S. and European diplomats view Tehran's purge of Mousavian as part of a dangerous political realignment inside Tehran, which has resulted in the removal of most moderate, Western-oriented leaders and bureaucrats. (Wall Street Journal)
News Resources - Israel and the Mideast:
A rocket fired by Palestinians in Gaza severely damaged a packing house in an Israeli community early Wednesday. Avi Aptelboim, head of the community's emergency squad, reported: "The packing-house sustained heavy damage....There were no injuries, thank God." Sdot Negev Regional Council head Meir Yifrach said, "We have not reached peace and quiet and...there is no state of calm yet....Hamas continues to arm itself." (Ynet News)
Brig. Gen. Eitan Dangot, the coordinator of government activities in the territories, notified the PA on Tuesday that starting Wednesday, Israel will let in 150 aid trucks per day into Gaza, a 50% increase. Within weeks Israel plans to increase the number to 250 trucks, which will enter through the Kerem Shalom crossing. (Ha'aretz)
See also Israel to Allow New Goods into Gaza (Maan News-PA)
Global Commentary and Think-Tank Analysis (Best of U.S., UK, and Israel):
Gonen ben Itzhak is an Israeli, the son of a retired Israel Defense Forces general who was in charge of defeating the first intifada some 20 years ago. Mosab Hassan Yousef is a Palestinian, the son of a founder of Hamas whose father was one of the leaders of that intifada. As detailed in the book Son of Hamas, we became partners in the fight against terrorism; Mosab became an undercover agent for the Shin Bet, Israel's security service; Gonen became his Shin Bet handler. In the nine years we worked together, the two of us, once sworn enemies, embraced mutual recognition. As we worked together to prevent the deaths of hundreds of Israelis and Palestinians, the two of us became friends.
We were shocked when, in 2009, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security opposed his request for political asylum, all the more so when it threatened to deport Mosab in the name of protecting American security. If this decision is upheld, it will signal to the world that America does not stand by those who sacrifice to oppose terrorism. (Washington Post)
There are clear indications that Saudi King Abdullah, who visited the White House Tuesday, has put distance into the kingdom's relationship with the U.S. Though for many years the kingdom was the largest foreign supplier of oil to the U.S., it has now slipped behind Canada and Mexico. With the years of ritual denunciations from both Bush and Obama regarding U.S. "dependence on foreign oil," the net result is less U.S. influence in Saudi Arabia.
On Iran, there is a widening if not unbridgeable gap between the two countries. The kingdom's own signals might well include the June 12 London Times story which reported that the kingdom would allow Israeli jets to fly over its territory to complete a bombing raid on Iran's nuclear facilities. Although officially denied by Saudi officials, the Times stood by its report. Its editor would not run such a story without being confident of the sources. The kingdom's own pursuit of (peaceful) nuclear energy is a clear sign that Riyadh thinks that the U.S. cannot or will not stop Iran's program. The writer is director of the Gulf and Energy Policy Program at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy. (Foreign Policy)
Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Recep Erdogan sees an opportunity to become the Mideast's regional hegemon, as well as Russia's strategic partner in oil and gas transmission. And to succeed he wants to rally the region's extremists to his neo-Ottoman cause. Turkey's public embrace of Hamas - which the EU and the U.S. consider a terrorist organization - has undercut traditional U.S. allies such as Egypt and Saudi Arabia. The biggest loser might be the Palestinian Authority. PA leader Mahmoud Abbas was cut off at the knees when the White House announced a $400 million Gaza aid package that will help resuscitate Hamas. Visiting the White House days later, Abbas reportedly begged Obama not to lift the Gaza blockade, which was sponsored by the Bush Administration after Hamas gunmen slaughtered Abbas' security people during the June 2007 Gaza coup. (Tablet)
See also Turkey Vital Ally for Israel - Farooq Mitha (Miami Herald)
No to Strategic Suicide - Emily B. Landau (bitterlemons-international.org)
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