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March 16, 2009

West Bank Terror & Gilad Shalit

In Cairo, Egyptian mediators were working around the clock with Israeli and Hamas negotiators trying to hammer out an agreement on the release of captured Israeli soldier Sgt. Gilad Shalit for hundreds of Palestinian terrorists; on the West Bank, Palestinian terrorists shot dead two unsuspecting Israeli policemen.  The deadly terror attack illustrates the dangers of setting free hundreds of hardened terrorists many of whom can be expected to strike again. On the other hand, Israel must cope with its historic pledge never to leave a soldier in captivity.

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March 04, 2009

U.S. reassessment of Palestine?

In Jerusalem, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has reiterated the new Obama administration support for a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. However Giora Eiland, a retired Israeli general who has served as head of Israel's National Security Council has called on the Obama administration to its reassess its position. Eiland says the two-state solution is now impossible to implement because of the situation on the ground. IsraCast has previously presented a detailed account of General Eiland's thinking which may have impacted on Prime Minister designate Binyamin Netanyahu's approach to the Palestinian issue.

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March 01, 2009

IDF in Gaza vs. NATO in Afghanistan

Over the Sabbath, Palestinians in the Gaza Strip launched 10 rockets at Israel - one of them hit an empty high school in Ashkelon causing serious damage to the building. Meanwhile in Spain, a local judge has ordered his own inquiry into Israel's targeted killing of terrorist chief Salah Shehade in Gaza who was responsible for murdering many Israeli civilians. Against this backdrop, IsraCast interviewed Ron Ben Yishai, a veteran Israeli military correspondent, who has covered military operations in many parts of the world including Iraq and Afghanistan.

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Listen to interview with Ron Ben Yishai includes transcript of the interview
February 25, 2009

Gaza Pasta Vs. Gilad Shalit

After failing to draw Kadima and Labor into his government, the Likud's Binyamin Netanyahu has started negotiations with his right wing partners on drafting the foreign policy and domestic guidelines for his new coalition. Meanwhile, an Israeli press report says U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has chastised the current Israeli government for not allowing food products such as pasta to enter the Gaza Strip. Could this be a veiled hint to the incoming prime minister? IsraCast analyst David Essing assesses the situation as Netanyahu sets about forging guidelines for his right wing coalition.

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February 18, 2009

Peres To Prod Netanyahu & Livni

Israel state president Shimon Peres will require his entire political prowess to resolve the disputed outcome of Israel's recent election. No clear winner emerged, although the Likud's Binyamin Netanyahu and Kadima's Tzipi Livni both claim victory. Netanyahu argues that the rig is ht wing bloc of parties took more seats, while Livni contends that she won the more actual votes than did Netanyahu.

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February 12, 2009

Israeli election cliffhanger

The outcome of Israel's general election still hangs in the balance. Only when the last votes of Israeli soldiers and diplomats are tallied will it become clear whether Kadima's Tzipi Livni or the Likud's Binyamin Netanyahu won the most votes. With over 99% of the ballots counted by hand, Livni leads by one Knesset seat, but that could change when the last soldier votes are tallied. Meanwhile both party leaders are claiming victory and already courting the support of Avigdor Lieberman who won third place.

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February 07, 2009

Lieberman – King Or Queen Maker Of Israeli Election

Avigdor Lieberman is without doubt the biggest surprise of Israel's current election campaign. When the votes are tallied in the February10th ballot, Lieberman may even beat out Labor's Ehud Barak for third place. If so, Lieberman could end up as king or queen maker by supporting wither Netanyahu or Livni for the premiership. Lieberman takes a tough stand not only against the Palestinians but also against Israeli Arabs, charging they are disloyal to the Jewish state. What is behind the electorate's obvious swing to the right? IsraCast examines why this crucial swing has transpired and will probably determine the composition of the next Israeli government.

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February 03, 2009

Palestinian Rocketing Impacts Israel Election

Since the end of Operation Cast Lead, Palestinian terrorists have carried out sporadic attacks killing one IDF soldier and wounding several civilians. On February 3rd, for the first time they escalated those attacks by launching a GRAD missile at the town of Ashqelon on the Mediterranean Sea. Angry residents charged that Israel halted its recent military operation into Gaza too early and now they were again paying the price. IsraCast assessment: Today's rocketing on Ashqelon will impact on Israel's national election on February 10th. Many undecided voters may now cast their ballots for front runner Binyamin Netanyahu of the Likud or for Avigdor Lieberman's party on the far right.

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February 01, 2009

An Open Letter to A citizen Of Gaza: I Am the Soldier Who Slept In Your Home

Hello, While the world watches the ruins in Gaza, you return to your home which remains standing. However, I am sure that it is clear to you that someone was in your home while you were away. I am that someone.

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January 30, 2009

Peres - Erdogan Confrontation

At the World Economic Forum in Davos, there were fireworks after Turkey's Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan again condemned Israel for its Operation 'Cast Shield' against Hamas in the Gaza Strip. Sharing the stage was Israel's President Shimon Peres who refuted Erdogan's allegations. Also taking part in the discussion were UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and Arab League Secretary General Amr Musa.

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January 27, 2009

Pope Benedict XVI Appeases Holocaust Denier

The decision of Pope Benedict XVI to revoke the excommunication on Holocaust denier Richard Williamson has shocked the Jewish world. Dr. Yitzak Minerbi, an Israeli expert on Jewish Vatican affairs, told IsraCast it was a very sad day for Jews who believed in the dialogue with the Vatican.

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January 26, 2009

Israel's Military Morality In Gaza

Col. Herzi Halevi, who spent the entire ground war inside the Gaza Strip, has given an inside description of the fighting against Hamas. The officer commanded 2500 Israeli paratroopers who killed an estimated 170 Hamas fighters, while one of his officers died and four other paratroopers were wounded. The colonel is married and has four children. He was interviewed by the Israeli newspaper Yediot Ahronot.

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January 23, 2009

Obama Goes Aggressive On Middle East

US President Barack Obama has officially announced that he is sending former U.S. Senator George Mitchell to the Middle East in a new attempt to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. At a State Department news conference, Obama spoke of aggressively tackling the issue but what can realistically be expected after the recent war between Israel and Hamas? IsraCast turned to Zalman Shoval, a former Israeli ambassador to Washington, who believes president Obama will look before he leaps into the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

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January 22, 2009

Ehud Barak On Barack Obama

Defense Minister Ehud Barak, the architect of Israel's war against Hamas in the Gaza Strip, has said the IDF achieved all its operational goals. Barak saw little or no possibility that Israel could be prosecuted internationally over its conduct of the war and quoted from U.S. President Barack Obama.

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January 21, 2009

Hamas Dirty Tricks

A rare recording indicates that Hamas did use Arabic media Center in Gaza as a launch-pad for launching Grad missiles at Israel during the recent fighting. The recording was broadcast for the first time on Israel Radio on January 21st. IsraCast says more and more indications are coming to light about a deliberate Hamas policy of exploiting civilians and then to blame Israel for 'war crimes'.

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January 19, 2009

Gaza & Obama's New World Order

Key European leaders converged on Jerusalem in a strong show of support for Israel against Hamas arms smuggling into the Gaza Strip. But at the same time, they strongly urged Israel to use the outcome of the war in Gaza to jump-start the peace process with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on the West Bank. The IsraCast analysis is that the impressive show of European as well as American backing for Israel against radical Islam is a prelude to a new world order that will be headed by President Barack Obama.

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January 18, 2009

Israel Announces Unilateral Cease-Fire

Israel's security cabinet has voted overwhelmingly to accept an Egyptian proposal for a cease-fire in Gaza. However, Defense Minister Ehud Barak warned that Israeli troops would respond severely if Hamas continues attacking Israel. But while Israeli leaders in Jerusalem were announcing the unilateral cease-fire, Hamas launched more rockets into Israel.

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January 15, 2009

Gaza Cease-Fire In Offing

Israeli leaders hope that Gen. (res.) Amos Gilad will return from Cairo with a serious Egyptian deal for a durable ceasefire that will also prevent future arms smuggling from Egypt into the Hamas controlled Gaza Strip. If so, Israel and Hamas are expected to implement a halt to the current warfare. However an Israeli official told IsraCast: "we hope the devil will not be in the fine print of the arms smuggling arrangement".

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January 14, 2009

Red Cross Disappoints On Gilad Shalit

"The International Red Cross should be more active and persuasive in getting a visit with abducted Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit" - that's the view of Noam, the father of corporal Shalit who was captured over two years ago by Palestinian terrorists from the Gaza Strip. Since then, in total violation of international law, the Palestinians had not allowed the Red Cross to pay even one visit to Gilad to testify to his treatment and condition. Today Israeli protesters gathered outside an Israeli prison where Red Cross Representatives once again visited captured Palestinian prisoners.

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January 13, 2009

I.D.F Defanging Hamas

The IDF continues to close the ring around Hamas guerrillas on land, sea and in the air. However, Israel's political leadership is giving more time for an Egyptian initiative leading to a ceasefire that would prevent future arms smuggling to Hamas leading to another explosion after Hamas regroups. Ismail Haniyeh, the Hamas leader in Gaza, has made a televised statement from inside his underground bunker, agreeing to cooperate with the Egyptians - but in distant Damascus, his Hamas colleague Haled Mashal is hanging tough. Israel is still on hold awaiting the outcome before deciding how to proceed in the current crisis.

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