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Showing Results 161-180 of 325 for Olmert
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 10, 2007

HAMAS TORPEDOES MILK SUPPLY TO GAZA

A senior IDF officer, responsible for overseeing the supply of humanitarian aid to Gaza , has rejected allegations that the Palestinian population will soon be facing starvation and other deprivation. In a briefing to the Knesset Foreign Affairs & Defense Committee Gen. Yusuf Mislav said Israeli policy is to ensure that Palestinians in Gaza receive adequate humanitarian aid - Israel refuses to have any contact with the radical Hamas regime in Gaza that identifies with Iran's aim to wipe Israel off the map. IsraCast quotes Gen. Mislav as saying : 'The Hamas regime actually launched a mortar attack on Israeli milk supplies to Gaza today as part of its propaganda campaign about looming starvation'.

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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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June 26, 2007

UPSTAGING SHARM EL SHEIK

Hamas succeeded in getting into the act - it upstaged the Sharm el Sheik summit by releasing a recording of captured IDF soldier Corporal Gilad Shalit. The emergency summit, hosted by Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak was called as a show of solidarity with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas whose Fatah movement was driven out of the Gaza Strip in a bloody showdown with Hamas last week. IsraCast is of the view, that although the summit events will be a sign of things to come the real test will be over security and terror issue on the West Bank which is controlled by Abbas.

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June 23, 2007

'ENGINEERING' NEW ILLUSION?

The rush is on to retrieve whatever is possible out of the Palestinian rubble in the wake of the Hamas takeover in Gaza. IsraCast perceives it as an international rescue mission to 'engineer' a separate Fatah peace partner headed by President Mahmoud Abbas. In light of performance record of president Mahmoud Abbas and his failure to halt repeated terror attacks and suicide bombings from the West Bank, the outcome is hard to foresee.

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June 19, 2007

HAMAS OVERKILL

What should we do to help President Mahmoud Abbas and his West Bank government and weaken Hamas and its grip on the Gaza Strip? The signs are that both U.S. President George Bush and Israel's Prime Minister Ehud Olmert see eye to eye in principle. The U.S. though may seek more than Israel would like to give when it comes to releasing terrorist prisoners, lifting roadblocks and other security related issues on the West Bank. IsraCast anticipates that the Hamas takeover of Gaza will be viewed as an overkill both of Palestinian lives and politically.

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June 17, 2007

EYELESS IN GAZA

The dust has not yet settled after the takeover of Gaza by Hamas, the radical Islam movement. From his headquarters in Ramallah on the West Bank, President Mahmoud Abbas has appointed a new prime minister Salam Fayyad to replace Ismail Haniyeh of Hamas. Haniyeh refuses to step down contending that his Hamas members control two- thirds of the Palestinian parliament. Now in the U.S., Prime Minister Ehud Olmert talks of a new opportunity arising from the split between Hamas and Fatah. A leading Israeli analyst Dr. Dan Schueftan previously told IsraCast that although today's events should have been visible from the outset it is most important to see their ramifications on future developments.

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June 15, 2007

SHATTERING THE ILLUSION

The Hamas takeover of Gaza has upset not only the Israeli-Palestinian confrontation but could also have consequences for neighboring which also faces an Islamist threat. IsraCast is of the view that the Hamas expulsion of President Mahmoud Abbas from Gaza is one of the most dramatic developments since the start of the Oslo peace process in 1993 and casts doubt on Palestinian readiness to accept the two state solution envisaged in the Road Map peace plan.

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June 13, 2007

BARAK IS BACK BIG-TIME

With his election victory in the Labor party, Ehud Barak must now show the Israeli people he has answers to their pressing security problems. IsraCast is of the view that Barak's comeback is a direct result of Israel's failure to win the Second Lebanon War last summer, an event that has shaken public confidence in the nation's leadership. Barak's expected appointment as defense minister may strengthen Prime Minister Ehud Olmert - but if Barak succeeds he could eventually upstage Olmert and become the 'de facto' leader in security and foreign affairs.

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June 08, 2007

ISRAELI - SYRIAN DILEMMA

As forecast by IsraCast, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert is now ready to actively explore the intentions of Syria President Bashaar Assad. Olmert had to fill two necessary requirements: first the greenlight from U.S. President George W. Bush and second a new and respected defense minister, to ease the jitters of an Israeli public which has grave doubts about Olmert's capabilties after the Second Lebanon War.

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May 29, 2007

NEW BALL GAME IN LABOR

What do the results of the Labor party leadership primary auger for the campaign before the June 12th runoff? IsraCast says new issues will surface that may determine the outcome before Laborites again go to the polls to pick their new leader.

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May 27, 2007

GENERAL BARAK OR ADMIRAL AYALON ?

In the Labor party race for new party leader, two top retired military commanders are leading the pack. According to opinion polls, Gen.(ret.) Ehud Barak and Admiral(ret.) Ami Ayalon are virtually tied before the May 28th ballot. IsraCast says a large number of Laborites are still undecided and their votes will likely decide the outcome. However the question is can either Ayalon or Barak win by passing the 40% threshold or will the two top candidates have to compete in a runoff. The incumbent Defense Minister Amir Peretz is not giving up declaring that last time the polls proved wrong when they predicted he would lose to Shimon Peres.

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May 22, 2007

HAMAS IN ISRAELI CROSSHAIRS

How will Israel react after a Qassam rocket from Gaza killed an Israeli woman driving in Sderot on Monday night? IsraCast says subsequent statements by Israeli officials indicate that Hamas political leaders may be put on Israel's hit list in addition to those who actually send the launchers of the rockets. What is certain is that targeted killings and other counter-terror operation will be escalated now but a major ground operation into the Gaza Strip is not in the offing.

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May 19, 2007

HARD CHOICES ON GAZA

Palestinians kept up their rocket barrage at the Israeli town of Sderot on Friday - this week alone they have terrorized the town with some one-hundred Qassams crashing down by day and night. The IDF has been ordered to step up counter-terror strikes but a senior officer rules out a major ground operation at this time. Prime Minister Ehud Olmert also appears ready to adopt this policy. IsraCast is of the view that Olmert will try and ride out the coming days with the expectation that his Labor coalition partners will elect either Ehud Barak or Ami Ayalon as party leader who will then take over as defense minister.

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May 16, 2007

SDEROT UNDER FIRE

As anticipated by IsraCast, the bloody Palestinian infighting between Hamas and Fatah in the Gaza Strip has spilled over into Israel. The Palestinians have launched over 30 Qassam rockets at the Israeli town of Sderot apparently in an attempt to deflect the focus from their internal feud that killed at least 15 Palestinians on Tuesday, May 15th. The rockets are terrorizing the children, women and men. In the initial bombardment, one woman was seriously injured and dozens more were lightly hurt and suffered from shock. While the Israeli government considers what to do, Jewish-Russian philanthropist Arkadi Gaydamak has stepped in with his own private solution.

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May 14, 2007

LIVNI, ARAB LEAGUE & GAZA

Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni presented a wide ranging Briefing on Israel's foreign relations when the Knesset Foreign Affairs & Defense Committee was opened to the public for the first time. Livni focused on the Arab League initiative which offers full peace in return for a final settlement of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. IsraCast reports that Livni was cautiously optimistic about the Arab League aiding the peace process but it could not substitute for the Palestinians at the conference table. Meanwhile in the Gaza Strip, the Hamas - Fatah bloodbath continues but this has not interfered with the the terrorists launch more Qassam rockets into Israel.

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May 11, 2007

AUTOPSY OF SECOND LEBANON WAR

The publication of the long awaited Winograd testimony has done little to alter the Israeli public's perception that Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, Defense Minister Amir Peretz and IDF Chief of Staff Dan Halutz fumbled the Second Lebanon War last summer. Olmert and Peretz, both inexperienced in conducting a war, rushed into battle with a military commander determined to prove that his pilots could win a guerrilla war with Hezbollah. When this strategy got bogged down, all three were at a loss of what to do. An IsraCast analysis indicates there although Olmert may have survived the first wave of public criticism, he now faces a political campaign of attrition calling on him to step down.

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May 08, 2007

SECOND LEBANON WAR REVISITED

Not only Israel, but countries in the Middle East and the international community are still pondering what happened to the vaunted Israel Defense Forces Israel in last summer's war against Hezbollah guerrillas in Lebanon. The Winograd Commission has painted the the broad outline focusing on the faulty decision making of Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, Defense Minister Amir Peretz and former Chief of Staff Dan Halutz. But it is Halutz's predecessor, Moshe Yaalon who has spelled out what what went wrong from the strategic and tactical points of view. Yaalon who served as Chief of Staff from 2002 , after the IDF withdrawal from southern Lebanon, until the spring of 2005, has given extensive interviews to the Maariv newspaper and Channel One TV. IsraCast summarizes these two important insights into what went wrong in the Second Lebanon war.

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