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Showing Results 241-260 of 843 for Palestinian
December 08, 2012

George Orwell in Israeli-Palestinian Confrontation

 George Orwell can best cast light on the persistent claims of Hamas and by Israeli officials in the current confrontation between Israel and the Palestinians. Hamas leaders Khaled Mashal and Ismail Haniya claim an historic Palestinian victory over Israel in the recent eight day battle with Israel – nothing could be further from the truth. Hamas rocket teams and their weapons arsenals were clobbered in Gaza and they know it. On the other hand, after 138 nations in the UN General Assembly voted in favor of recognizing Palestine as a non- member observer state, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu adopted the old Arab adage of 'cutting off your nose to spite your face' by announcing plans to build 3,000 housing units linking Jerusalem with the Israeli town of Maale Adumim in Judea & Samaria (West Bank). This construction plan was condemned instantly by nearly one and all including Israel's closest allies, even Canada. Yet Netanyahu and his Likud cabinet ministers stand by the settlement decision as a fitting response to the flagrant violation of the Oslo Accord by West Bank Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.

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December 03, 2012

Bibi Bungles Big Time!

 'Keep your eye on the ball!' This is one of Prime Minister Netanyahu's adages for smart politics. But Bibi has failed to follow his own advice in his ongoing confrontation, not only with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, but also with the U.S. and nearly all the international community. Netanyahu's conduct of the Palestinian issue has been abysmal – so much so that although Abbas has refused to negotiate, it is Israel that is taking all the blame! This at a time that Israel is counting on vital international support for blocking Iran's nuclear weapons program that Netanyahu warned will soon come to a head. Analyst David Essing is of the view the current furor could affect the outcome of Israel's general election on January 22nd.

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December 01, 2012

Isracast Weekend Report

 It is a diplomatic debacle for Israel - that is an accurate description of the massive support by the UN General Assembly for Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. Back in Jerusalem, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu downplayed the impact charging that nothing had changed on the ground - only direct negotiations with Israel could ever lead to a Palestinian state. Moreover, by taking a unilateral step to bypass talks with Israel, Abbas had violated the Oslo Accord and two could play that game. Israel would also react with its own one-sided measures. Later Israeli officials announced government approval for the construction of 3,000 new housing units that will link the West Bank settlement town of Maale Adumin with Jerusalem. There is no question that Israel will insist on the area remaining part of Israel in any future peace agreement with the Palestinians.

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November 27, 2012

Likud Swings Right –Livni Enters & Barak Exits

While Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu portrayed the new Likud list as 'a strong young national team', Labor's Shelly Yachimovich has blasted it as 'an extreme Right wing party with no social agenda'.

Defense Minister Ehud Barak probably left political life after his successful contribution to the recent Gaza operation before his party's poor showing in upcoming election. But he has also left his options open for a possible Netanyahu offer to return as defense minister if he forms the next government.

Tzipi Livni has entered the campaign claiming only she can attract moderate Likud supporters who are turned off by the new Likud ticket.

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November 26, 2012

Israel & Gaza - 'Quiet for Quiet'

 After the intense eight-day conflict both sides claim victory with Israel pledging that 'quiet will be met with quiet'. However Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and his government have been facing criticism for 'not finishing the job' and ordering a ground operation into Gaza to stop the repeated rocketing of Israeli civilians. Not only the Israeli residents in the south who have been terrorized for years from Gaza but also many of the IDF reserve soldiers mobilized for a ground attack, blamed Netanyahu for not going all the way. However analyst David Essing is of the view that Netanyahu along with Defense Minister Ehud Barak and Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman succeeded in blending military force with diplomacy in furthering Israel's national interest at this time.   

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November 22, 2012

Statecraft of Obama, Netanyahu and Morsi

 As of 21:00 hours local time, the Palestinian rockets from Gaza ceased flying through the air bound for Israeli towns and villages while Israeli aircraft stopped raiding Hamas targets in Gaza. The latest round in the latest slugfest between Gaza and Israel was over. Egypt's President Muhamed Morsi, the surprising Muslim Brotherhood leader, is now charged with overseeing that both sides honor the new truce. The silent and final arbitrator in this unlikely scenario is U.S. President Barack Obama who has skillfully pulled his substantial levers with both sides, possibly for the benefit of one and all, including the Palestinians in Gaza. Analyst David Essing is of the view that the process of achieving the latest ceasefire could be of paramount importance.

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November 21, 2012

No Recycling of Hamas Ceasefires

 Isracast Assessment: Israel insisting the new ceasefire must include solid guarantees that will bar the renewal of Palestinian rocketing from Gaza for a long term. Will Hamas agree to such a demand that would pull the rug out from their vow to wipe Israel off the map? Analyst David Essing is of the view that behind the flurry of diplomatic activity to halt the violence, U.S. President Barack Obama and Egyptian leader Mohamed Morsi have been cooperating on a deal to resolve the crisis and possibly restart negotiations between Israel & Palestinians. In return, the U.S. would again view Egypt as a close ally with all that entails. As President, will Morsi put Egypt's crucial economic interests before his role as leader of the radical Muslim Brotherhood and lean on Hamas to halt its rocketing of Israel? In Jerusalem, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu is weighing the pros and cons: whether the ceasefire deal offers a reasonable prospect of peace and quiet for Israeli residents in the south and the subsequent improvement in relations with Egypt and the U.S. or to launch an IDF ground operation into Gaza. He will hold off at least until U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton joins the bevy of diplomats visiting the region. Meanwhile, while the diplomatic deliberations continue, both Israel and the Palestinians are continuing to slug it out with civilians on both sides caught in the middle. So far the IDF has hit over 1400 terror targets in Gaza while signaling that there must be quiet on both sides of the border.

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November 15, 2012

Gaza-Israel and the Bigger Middle East Picture

 Regional implications: First, Israel will not allow Egypt's President Mohammed Morsi to hold Israeli peace treaty as ransom for Gaza rocketing of Israel. Second, after rise of Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, Hamas felt it could cross Israel's red line with impunity. Analyst David Essing is of the view that Israel will also react with the necessary force, if Iran crosses Israel's nuclear red line this spring.

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November 12, 2012

Israel on Verge of Major Ground Operation Into Gaza

 Within twenty-four hours over one hundred rockets and missiles launched from Gaza sent some one and a half million Israeli men, women and children racing for their bomb shelters. Only 'Color Red!', the wail of sirens, that give children and adults fifteen seconds warning to reach safety the 'Iron Dome' missile defense, have prevented many Israelis being killed. As it is, a number have been injured as the missiles landed as far away as the city of Beersheba. In some cases, parents caught in the open were seen huddling over their children to protect them with their own bodies. Life in southern has been paralyzed for days. Analyst David Essing is of the view that Tzachi Hanegbi, a confidant of Netanyahu was obviously speaking on instructions from the Prime Minister.

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November 10, 2012

Isracast Weekend Report: Now to Israel's Election Campaign!

 Will Barack Obama now retaliate against Israel for Bibi Netanyahu's betting on Mitt Romney? Netanyahu's rivals are attacking the Prime Minister for acting irresponsibly by showing his preference for the defeated Republican candidate. Although Netanyahu bet and he bet wrong, the issue is unlikely to be a game-changer in Israel's election campaign that has yet to move into top gear for January 22. First Likud and labor must hold their primaries for the party list of candidates and Shimon Peres, Ehud Olmert and Tzipi Livni must decide once and for all whether to throw their hats into the ring. Meanwhile Netanyahu is trying vigorously to repair some of his damaged bridges with Obama with statements like: "I will continue to work with President Obama to protect the security interests of Israeli citizens". And the PM stressed:"The strategic alliance between Israel and the U.S. is stronger than ever'. (In all fairness it should be said that the much maligned Defense Minister Ehud Barak deserves most of the credit for the 'unprecedented' military collaboration between the two countries. Netanyahu often dispatched Barak on special missions to Washington to smooth over the not infrequent tiffs with the White House and keep relations on the rails with the Pentagon. But the overbearing Barak is often his own worst enemy when it comes to Israeli politics and his Independence party might not win even one seat in the election).

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November 05, 2012

Kahlon's Cold Feet and Abbas's Hot Tip

 What is the impact of Likud Cabinet Minister's Moshe Kahlon's final decision not to form a new party to run against the Likud in the upcoming election? Kahlon's shooting star has now burned out and the campaign will now turn to whether former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert will again throw his hat into the ring to lead a new Center bloc or whether he will succumb to his numerous legal problems. From another quarter, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has also got into the action by trying to stir up interest in the moribund Palestinian issue. Analyst David Essing has this election update.

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October 31, 2012

Israeli Election - 'Biberman' Off and Running

 Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's gamble has paid off, so far. His proposal to merge the Likud with Avigdor Lieberman's was approved by a sea of yellow party cards at the Likud Convention in Tel Aviv. In the general election on January 22, they will run on a united party list called Likud - Betaynu, 'Likud is our home'. Although Netanyahu is off to a fast start leaving the Left still in the starting blocks, analyst David Essing is of the view that the dust has yet to settle in the election race.

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October 27, 2012

Why Netanyahu Did It!

 Why has Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu shocked Israel by running on the same ticket with Avigdor Lieberman, probably the most controversial Right-wing politician in the country? And how will this surprising partnership affect the general election slated for January 22. Netanyahu and Lieberman are selling their deal as a means to improve 'governance and political stability' at a time the state is facing the Iranian nuclear threat and economic challenges. However analyst David Essing is of the view that Netanyahu studied recent opinion polls and was alarmed by what he saw.

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October 25, 2012

Iran, Sudan, Gaza and Israel

 The Israeli-Gaza border: Hundreds of thousands of Israeli civilians have come out of their bomb shelters this morning after being bombarded by some eighty rockets and mortars. Kids went back to school and their parents left for work. But for how long? During the flare-up, Israeli aircraft and tanks targeted the Palestinian rocket teams. Amid the cross border fireworks, a mysterious explosion demolished a munitions plant in Sudan that was supplying weapons to the Palestinians. Khartoum pointed the finger at Israel - four Israeli jets had bombed the site. Jerusalem did not confirm or deny. Analyst David Essing concludes there are more questions than answers after the latest conflagration.

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August 14, 2012

Morsi Inaugerates New Egypt

The shock waves are still reverberating and will for some time to come in Egypt, Israel and the entire Middle East. In a stunning coup, Egypt's newly elected President Mohamed Morsi has purged the all-powerful top brass of the Egyptian Army that has ruled the country since 1952. After his election, most pundits jumped the gun - take TIME magazine's cover story of July 9: 'The Revolution That Wasn't, Why The Generals Remain Egypt's Real Rulers'. Analyst David Essing has this assessment from Jerusalem of what is being viewed as an historic development in the country along the Nile.

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July 23, 2012

Israel Will Bar Syria's Chemical Weapons From Hezbollah

Israel will act militarily to prevent Hezbollah from transporting Syria's chemical weapons across the border to Lebanon - that was the message from Defense Minister Ehud Barak. Interviewed on July 20th, Barak told Channel 1 TV that Israel was 'very concerned' about terror groups exploiting the current chaos to take control of Syria's chemical weapons. The New York Times had reported that Israel has raised such a contingency with the U.S. On the Hezbollah bus bombing in Bulgaria that killed five Israelis and injured more than 30 others, Israel would find out 'exactly' who had sent the lone terrorist to Burgas Airport. Analyst David Essing is of the view that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu will order the Mossad to track down and execute the perpetrators, as did Golda Meir after Palestinian terrorists massacred eleven Israeli athletes at the Much Olympics in 1972.

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July 19, 2012

Syria - Beginning of the End?

 Does the deadly bomb blast in Damascus that killed three of President Bashar Assad's three top officials spell the beginning of the end? That is the question that is now being asked in Israel. Just twenty-four hours earlier, IDF Maj.Gen. Aviv Kochavi gave a closed-door briefing on the situation in Syria. Kochavi, the commander of the IDF Intelligence Branch stated: 'Syria is going the way of Iraq: the demise of the central government and the breakup of the state into various tribal regions'. In the Knesset Foreign Affairs & Defense Committee, Gen. Kochavi reviewed the latest developments on Israel's various fronts. Analyst David Essing is of the view that not only Iranian A-Bombs pose a future threat, Syria's massive chemical weapons may now be a 'clear and present danger!'

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June 10, 2012

Netanyahu - Settler Showdown

 The recent inclusion of the Kadima party into the coalition has already paid dividends for Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu. With Kadima's support, the PM was able to sail through Right wing opposition, even from inside his Likud party, and comply with a Supreme Court ruling to evict Israeli residents from five buildings built on West Bank land that belonged to a Palestinian owner. Meanwhile just over the borders in Egypt and Syria, Analyst David Essing is of the view that the term 'Arab Spring' has obviously become a media oxymoron.

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June 07, 2012

Israeli Commander - Israel is Super Ready for Iran

 In advance of new nuclear talks with Iran, IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantz has assessed the current range of threats now facing Israel. With the 'Arab Spring' raging in Egypt and elsewhere, the probability of a planned war against Israel was low. But on the other hand, the Arab Street was 'very volatile' and could spark a spontaneous flare-up. First and foremost there was Iran's drive for nuclear weapons and although Syria was rent by internal strife, Syria's military capabilities have not been downgraded. Analyst David Essing reports on the closed door briefing of Israel's top soldier to the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee.

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April 07, 2012

'First Passover In Israel'

 On April 28th at the Armored Corps Base at Latrun, twin sisters from Long Island, New York will be promoted to Second Lieutenants in the Israel Defense Forces, after successfully completing the officers training course. Sapir and Inbar Baumwohl, like many other Jewish young men and women from around the world, leave their families and come on 'aliya' to Israel in order to serve in the IDF. Their stories are as varied as the countries they came from. During the Passover holiday, reporter Sigal Arbitman in the newspaper 'Yisrael Hayom' wrote two articles on these 'solitary soldiers', who come on their own to Israel. IsraCast's David Essing sums up the interviews with these idealists.

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