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Showing Results 261-280 of 422 for Lebanon
November 28, 2007

Annapolis vs. radical Islam

At Annapolis, Israel's Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Palestinian President Abbas were the two protagonists but it was U.S President George Bush who was in the global spotlight. Bush made clear he planned on being not only stage director at the conference but also director for his new initiative to be enacted during his final year in the White House. And indeed, Annapolis had all the markings of impacting on the troubled Middle East far beyond the Israeli-Palestinian dispute. The IsraCast assessment is that against the backdrop of the Iranian nuclear threat and the Iraqi imbroglio, Bush hopes that movement on Israeli-Palestinian negotiations will change the current Middle-East mosaic for the better.

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October 30, 2007

IRANIAN PEOPLE VS. THE BOMB

More and more Iranians now fear that President Ahmadinejad's nuclear weapons is steering their country toward a global confrontation fraught with danger. This is the assessment of Menashe Amir, a leading Israeli expert on Iran, who monitors Iranian affairs on a daily basis. IsraCast presents analyst Amir's five point plan for stopping Ahmadinejad which he outlined in a public lecture:

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October 12, 2007

ANNAPOLIS SPIN VS. GAZA ROCKETS

Barring unforeseen circumstances, the Israeli-Palestinian confrontation will go to the conference table in Annapolis next month at the invitation of U.S. President George W. Bush. It's a command performance, neither Israel's Prime Minister Ehud Olmert nor Palestinian West Bank President Mahmoud Abbas are likely to risk America's ire by refusing the invitation or being blamed for its failure. But IsraCast concludes that reality on the ground and the leadership status of Olmert and Abbas do not lend much credence for achieving a breakthrough.

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October 07, 2007

PEACE IN ANNAPOLIS?

What are the prospects for Middle East peace conference at Annapolis scheduled to convene at Annapolis next month? Although conference convener U.S. President George Bush has high hopes, the IsraCast assessment is that Annapolis has as little chance of bringing 'peace in our time' as did Munich nearly seventy years ago. While the participants try and rev up some momentum for Annapolis, Hamas reacts by escalating attacks on Israel from Gaza.

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September 16, 2007

ISRAELI BLACKOUT

Israel is refusing to comment on the Washington Post report that Israeli jets bombed a Syrian nuclear facility supplied by North Korea on September 6th. IDF intelligence chief Gen. Amos Yadlin has just briefed the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee but made no reference to the alleged air strike. At the start of the closed door session, committee chairman Zachi Hanegbi said Gen.Yadlin that he was under no obligation to discuss the affair. Knesset Member Hanegbi later told IsraCast that Israel's refusal to comment on the alleged attack is making it easier for Syria to play down the matter and there were 'encouraging signs' that tension was subsiding.

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September 11, 2007

David Grossman

David Grossman is awarded the EMET Prize for his works, including short-story collections and novels, documentary and philosophical writings, a play and books for children and teenagers, all of which deal broadly, profoundly and without hesitation with the fundamental questions of human existence in general and the Jewish and Israeli existence in particular. With his complex, accurate and intimate insight his literary works shed light on the consciousness of his characters and on the mental processes they go through within a national-historical context. His writing stands out for its originality and its variety of artistic forms.

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September 07, 2007

ENIGMA OF ISRAELI OVERFLIGHT

What was the mission of the mysterious Israeli flight into Syrian airspace which has not been commented on by Israeli officials? Both Syria and its ally Iran have condemned the overflight and warned of the consequences. After examining the information so far, IsraCast is of the view there is one explanation that appears more logical than all others. Meanwhile, on the Gaza border, the IDF's new high-tech tactics are in a race to suppress the Qassam rocketing before one of them causes a massacre in the Israeli town of Sderot. IDF Maj. Gen. (res.) Danny Yatom, a Labor Knesset member assesses the current confrontation and needs to be done.

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September 05, 2007

RUSSIAN ROULETTE IN SDEROT

Palestinian terrorists in the Gaza Strip have stepped up their Qassam rocketing of the Israeli town of Sderot as the new school year got underway - the terrorists called it a 'present'. On September 3rd seven Qassam rockets crashed into Sderot some during the early morning when parents were taking toddlers and children to school. There were no casualties but the town was terrorized with panic stricken parents and children rushing to bomb shelters. Thanks to 'Red Dawn', the early warning sirens give civilians some 15 seconds to run to safety. Angry parents cancelled school in protest. The next day the Knesset was reconvened from its summer recess for a special debate on the situation and Prime Minister Olmert's contacts with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. IsraCast asked Likud leader Bibi Netanyahu if Prime Minister Olmert was playing Russian roulette with the children of Sderot. Kadima MK Prof. Isaac Ben-Israel, a former IDF general, also assessed the Sderot situation and why the Israeli government is apparently holding back.

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August 31, 2007

NUCLEAR MESSAGE OR SNAFU

Israel is now building an underground nuclear bunker that could survive a nuclear attack, presumably from Iran. The story, complete with verifying photos, was carried by the Israeli newspaper Yediot Ahronot and sparked sharp criticism from Likud Knesset Member Yuval Steinitz who called it a grave violation of national security. IsraCast examines various aspects of the disclosure of Israel's nuclear bunker and Iranian expert Menashe Amir analyzes the latest statement by U.S. President George Bush that Iran will not be permitted to acquire nuclear weapons.

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August 29, 2007

False assumptions

Unless Tony Blair, Condoleezza Rice and other emissaries shake off the conventional wisdom that settling the Israel-Palestinian conflict is a prerequisite for Middle East stability, their visits to the region will be nothing more than mere meddling.

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August 28, 2007

AUSCHWITZ BORDERS?

Israel's Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas reportedly discussed an Israeli withdrawal on the West Bank at their latest meeting in Jerusalem. According to Israel Radio, the two leaders also considered a land swap involving West Bank settlements in return for Israeli territory in the Negev desert as well as a partition of Jerusalem. The right- wing Likud party has charged that Olmert has no mandate to negotiate such issues. Likud MK Yuval Steinitz told IsraCast that an Israeli pullback to the former lines of 1967 would lead to a Holocaust for the Jewish state.

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August 17, 2007

ISRAELI-SYRIAN MISCALCULATION

This week both Israeli and Syrian leaders have been trying to calm recent tension on the Israeli controlled Golan Heights that were captured in the Yom-Kippur War of 1973. The IDF and the Syrian army have been training on the Golan against the backdrop of some belligerent statements by Syrian President Bashar Assad that he would retrieve the area one way or another. Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Defense Minister Ehud Barak toured the north declaring that Israel had no intention on attacking Syria. Syrian Vice- President Farouk Ashara also said Damascus was not about to go to war. However, Israeli expert Professor Eyal Zisser told IsraCast that despite the calming declarations, a minor incident or mistake could trigger an Israeli - Syrian war.

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August 12, 2007

BARAK BRAKES ON OLMERT

Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Defense Minister Ehud Barak have crossed swords over what security risks should be taken in order to promote renewed peace contacts with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. Olmert appears eager to produce results by easing restrictions on Palestinian movement on West Bank. However, sources close to Barak warn of a renewed threat of Palestinian suicide bombers if vital checkpoints are removed. IsraCast is of the view that Olmert of Kadima and Barak of Labor both require time to rebuild their leadership images with Israeli voters and therefore they will seek a short-term Modus vivendi to prevent a breakup of the government coalition.

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July 27, 2007

ISRAELI-PALESTINIAN PEACE TRAIN

In Jerusalem, momentum is building for the international meeting to discuss implementing the two state solution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict slated for this fall. In calling for the conference, U.S. President George Bush has apparently pulled some strings in all quarters to create a constructive atmosphere. IsraCast sees signs that Israel's Prime Minister Ehud Olmert has implemented a new agenda. He has discarded his unilateralism opting for risks and concessions in bilateral talks with the Palestinians resembling that of the Labor party. This approach may also be designed to influence Israeli public opinion.

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July 23, 2007

European Media Slant

'By and large, European media coverage is biased against Israel' - that's the assessment of Dr. Manfred Gerstenfeld, Chairman of the Board of  Fellows of the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs. In an interview with IsraCast, Gerstenfeld also charged that Israel's government have proved to be 'verbal vegetarians' when it comes to confronting the problem.

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Listen to Interview with Dr. Gerstenfeld Includes transcript of interview
July 17, 2007

GOING LAST MIDDLE EAST MILE

About to enter the home-stretch of his second and final term, U.S. President George Bush is making a final attempt to reach an Israeli-Palestinian peace settlement after the Hamas coup in Gaza. The IsraCast analysis is that Bush is exploiting the split between Hamas and Fatah to unify West Bank Palestinians and moderate Arab states on an accelerated two-state solution. Bush told the Palestinians they must renounce Hamas and terrorism and recognize Israel as a Jewish state. Israelis had to settle the Negev and Galilee and not the West Bank.

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July 15, 2007

PERES LASTS LONGER

Israel's parliament, the Knesset has sworn in Shimon Peres as new state president. In his address, Peres declared that he would work to unify all the Israeli people in its quest for peace. Although the position of state president is mainly ceremonial without executive power, IsraCast believes all the indications are that Peres will play a more active political role than any of his predecessors - possibly stepping on the prime minister's toes. Peres himself never won an election for premiership although he served twice in the position and even initiated the Oslo process with the Palestinians.

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July 13, 2007

SECOND THOUGHTS ON LEBANON WAR

On the first anniversary of the Second Lebanon War, Israel was soul searching about the 163 Israeli soldiers and civilians who were killed and the several thousand others who were wounded last summer. Prime Minister Ehud Olmert toured part of the northern border declaring he was right to launch the war in the face of the Hezbollah provocations. IsraCast is of the view that Olmert is now on political death row trying to appeal a condemnatory verdict by the final Winograd report that could lead to his resignation.

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July 06, 2007

ZERO TOLERANCE TO GAZA TERROR

The recent surge in IDF strikes against terrorist activity in the Gaza Strip indicates that Israel has adopted a zero tolerance policy similar to that on the West Bank. The new Defense Minister Ehud Barak is overseeing this approach while IDF Chief of Staff Gaby Ashkenazi is in command on the ground. After hearing accounts of recent briefing by the Chief of Staff and senior IDF officers, IsraCast has the impression that the Gaza Strip has become the focal point in blocking the Iranian thrust to threaten Israel from both its northern and southern borders.

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July 02, 2007

OLMERT'S CALCULATED RISKS

Prime Minister Ehud Olmert has spelled out a series of concessions to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and his West Bank government. In a briefing to the Knesset Foreign Affairs & Defense Committee, Olmert spoke of lifting some West Bank checkpoints in addition to transferring hundreds of millions of Palestinian tax money to Abbas and seeking a new approach to peace talks. But IsraCast reports that Olmert also stressed that his 'calculated risks' were conditioned on Abbas leading a 'Hamas-free' government.

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