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|
October 19, 2010
Israel: Hamas Has Anti-Aircraft Missiles (AP-Los Angeles Times)
Israel Invites Chilean Miners for Christmas in the Holy Land (Ha'aretz)
Gaza Tunnels Become Export Channel - Mai Yaghi (AFP)
World's Largest Underground Hospital Being Built in Haifa - David Ratner (Rambam Medical Center-IMRA)
News Resources - North America, Europe, and Asia:
As part of the semiannual U.S.-Israel Strategic Dialogue, the two countries on Monday said Iran is among the "greatest challenges" to stability in the Middle East and they pledged to keep Iran from acquiring atomic arms. "Iran's continued noncompliance with its international obligations related to its nuclear program, as well as its continued support for terrorist entities, are of grave concern to our two countries and the entire international community," they said in a statement. (AP)
See also GCC Secretary-General Warns Against Iran Nuclearization
At a meeting between ministers of the Gulf Cooperation Council and Turkish representatives, as part of the strategic dialogue between the sides, GCC Secretary-General Abd al-Rahman al-'Atiya warned that Iran is close to producing nuclear warheads and that there is a fear about the pace of armament in the region as a result of Iran's nuclear program. He called for examining the secret aspects of Iran's nuclear program, the Kuwaiti newspaper Al-Siyassa reported Monday. (MEMRI)
Chief Palestinian peace negotiator Saeb Erekat called Monday for OECD members to "cancel their participation" in an Oct. 20-22 conference in Jerusalem on tourism. The Palestinians had earlier opposed OECD approval of Israel's membership in the 33-member club of free market democracies. (Reuters)
Four men were found guilty Monday of planning to blow up a synagogue and Jewish community center in the Riverdale section of Bronx, New York. They also planned to fire surface-to-air-missiles at the New York Air National Guard Base at Stewart Airport in Newburgh, New York. (CNN)
News Resources - Israel and the Mideast:
The U.S. warned Lebanon that it will not tolerate an Iranian foothold on the shores of the Mediterranean, Israel Radio reported on Tuesday. Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs Jeffrey Feltman gave the warning to senior Lebanese officials whom he met with two days ago. (Jerusalem Post)
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Monday: "The discussions about the new building permits are superficial, as only a small percentage have been added. The addition is trivial and does not affect the situation in the settlements, or a possible peace treaty with the Palestinians....If the Palestinians want to find problems, then we won't proceed. If they want to solve the problems, I think that there are other ways to get over the gaps and move forward." (Ha'aretz)
Prime Minister Netanyahu ordered that the proposed amendment to the Citizenship Act requiring those seeking Israeli citizenship to pledge their allegiance to a "Jewish and democratic Israel" will also apply to Jews seeking Israeli citizenship under the Law of Return. (Ynet News)
Global Commentary and Think-Tank Analysis (Best of U.S., UK, and Israel):
For 15 years and more, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas conducted peace talks with Israel in the absence of a freeze on Jewish settlement construction in the West Bank and east Jerusalem. Now, it appears that his newborn negotiations with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu - and their goal of agreement on a Palestinian state within a year - will die because of Abbas' refusal to continue without such a freeze. The settlement impasse originated not with Netanyahu or Abbas, but with Obama - who by insisting on an Israeli freeze has created a near-insuperable obstacle to the peace process he is trying to promote.
In July, following a meeting at the White House, it looked like the U.S. and Israeli leaders had overcome their differences. Yet to the surprise of both Netanyahu and some in his own administration, Obama reintroduced the settlement issue in his September address to the UN General Assembly. In doing so, he made it impossible for Abbas not to make the same demand. (Washington Post)
See also Fixation on West Bank Building Hampers Mideast Peace - Editorial (New York Daily News)
In April 2010, the Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD) commissioned ConStrat to study online Palestinian political sentiment. For nine weeks, ConStrat culled thousands of Arabic language posts from social media sites. We found that although the Palestinian web landscape is not devoid of users with moderate to liberal views, it is dominated by radicalism. Among radicalized users, a small but distinct group of Salafists view conflict with Israel as a religious duty, viewing jihad as the only answer. In addition, on Hamas' most popular discussion sites, a majority continue to support violence against Israel.
While U.S. media has lauded Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad's efforts to reform the West Bank, online forums indicate that Palestinians are not impressed. Some forums declared Fayyad a puppet of the West, while others claimed that his government is constitutionally illegitimate.
Finally, our data showed that a majority of Palestinians do not support regional peace efforts. Discussion of peace talks was overwhelmingly negative and the social media environment suggests little support for a new peace initiative. As our study showed, now may not be an ideal time to push for a final agreement between Israel and the Palestinians. (National Interest)
The idea that mandating an oath of allegiance for new citizens is a sign of Israeli fascism is part of the delegitimization campaign against Israel. It fits so well with media blather about the decline of Israeli democracy that critics have conveniently ignored the fact that such oaths are normal fare in every major Western democracy.
The U.S. oath of allegiance for new citizens requires new Americans to "absolutely and entirely renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state, or sovereignty"; promise to "support and defend the Constitution and laws of the United States of America against all enemies, foreign and domestic"; promise to "bear arms" and "perform noncombatant" service at the direction of the U.S. government; and swear in the name of God Almighty himself, all of which makes swearing an oath of allegiance to the democratic Jewish State of Israel seem like pretty weak stuff. (Tablet)
Negotiations Amidst the Settlement Freeze - Michael Singh (Foreign Policy)
Unsubscribe from Daily Alert