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Showing Results 61-80 of 209 for Peres
November 07, 2010

Obama And Netanyahu In Tests Of Leadership

 The Israeli-Palestinian peace effort is still side-tracked after Israel' ten month moratorium on settlement building expired on Sept.26th. After refusing to conduct talks with Israel during the freeze, Pa;estinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas now demands the moratorium be further extended as a condition for returning to the table. Israel's Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has said he would stick to his ten month commitment, the Obama administration has urged Israel to extend the moratorium and the issue is likely to be at the top of the agenda when Netanyahu meets with Vice-President Joe Biden when they meet in the U.S. IsraCast analyst David Essing assesses the impact of President Barack Obama's defeat in the U.S. mid-term elections and some of the implications for Prime Minister Netanyahu. 

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October 25, 2010

Israel And Saudi Arabia Vs. Iran

There may be more than meets the eye behind the monumental U.S. arms sale of $60 billion to Saudi Arabia. IsraCast analyst David Essing assesses some of the possible ramifications against the backdrop of what could be a silent shift of some of Israel's strategic security considerations from Turkey to the Gulf. But there is still a fly in the ointment. In order for such a shift to jell there is a need for at least a semblance of progress on the Israeli- Palestinian track in order to placate public opinion in the Arab world. On the domestic scene, President Shimon Peres and Defense Minister Ehud Barak, two of Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's strongest supporters have been urging Netanyahu to accept a U.S. request to extend the settlement freeze in the face of stiff opposition from the Right-wing coalition.

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September 22, 2010

Israeli Settlement Freeze And Palestinian Violence

 There is still no solution in sight to the tug-of-war between Israel and the Palestinians over the expiry of Israel's self-imposed building freeze at Israeli settlements in Judea & Samaria (West Bank). The Israeli government says construction will be resumed after the Sept.26th deadline - if it is, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas threatens to walk out of the current peace talks with Israel's Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu. The U.S. has been prodding Netanyahu to extend his 'building suspension' but the PM's Right-wing coalition colleagues are demanding that he keep his word to send the bulldozers back to work. Meanwhile, IDF Chief of Staff Gabi Ashkenazi is preparing for 'all contingencies' including a possible renewed wave of Palestinian violence on the West Bank.

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September 04, 2010

Israeli And Palestinian Summit Optimism

 Both Israel's Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas have come away from the Washington summit in an upbeat mood. Back home in the Middle East, their critics on both sides will be asking: 'Just what did he concede at the summit?' IsraCast analyst David Essing says the stage may have been set for both Netanyahu and Abbas to take some fateful decisions in the coming year with the U.S. acting as adjudicator. Meanwhile, the Arab world appears ready to support a resolution of the conflict while Iran, Hamas and Hezbollah are enraged and trying to inflame the Arab world against the current peace move.

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August 31, 2010

Netanyahu's Tightrope In Washington

 With U.S. President Barack Obama presiding, Israel's Prime Minister Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas are set to launch New peace talks in Washington on Sept.2nd. However, a major clash is threatening to torpedo this latest peace effort. Netanyahu has said he is committed to start rebuilding in Israeli settlements in Judea & Samaria (West Bank) after Israel's unilateral building suspension expires on Sept 26th. - Abbas warns that he'll walk out of the talks if Israel builds anew. IsraCast analyst David Essing assesses Israel's approach to the new peace talks.

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August 01, 2010

Arab League Green Light vs. Gaza Rocketing

 On July 29th, the Arab League put its seal of approval on a new round of direct talks between Israel and the Palestinians. Since the election of Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, nearly a year and a half ago, West Bank Palestinian President Muhmoud Abbas has refused to negotiate with Netanyahu. But after Netanyahu met recently with U.S. President Barak Obama, European officials and Arab leaders, they have all come in support of the direct negotiations. Netanyahu has declared repeatedly that he means business about implementing the two state solution and this has apparently done the trick. While Abbas considered his reply, Hamas controlled Gaza reacted swiftly with fresh rocket attacks on Israel.

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July 24, 2010

Netanyahu & Abbas at Crossroads

 Israel's Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and West Bank Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas continue to spar over the conditions for starting direct negotiations. Netanyahu's condition is that there be no prior conditions; Abbas now demands an Israeli commitment to extend the current freeze on settlement building that expires on September 26th. American envoy George Mitchell is trying hard to square the circle in the current proximity talks he is conducting between the two sides. The Washington Times report that Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak is seriously ill with stomach and pancreas cancer has caught Israel's attention. However the reaction is one of confidence - Israeli experts believe there will be a smooth succession of power, whenever Mubarak departs.

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June 06, 2010

'Rachel Corrie' Sailed For Ashdod

 Israeli naval commandos have boarded the Irish ship Rachel Corrie and forced the vessel to change course from Gaza to the nearby Israeli port of Ashdod. This time there was no resistance by any of the fifteen passengers and the Israeli military spokesman said there were no casualties. The ship did not carry any weapons or explosives but tons of cement may not be allowed to be sent on to Gaza. IsraCast Assessment: The Rachel Corrie incident indicates that violence on the Turkish ship Marmara was triggered by passengers and not Israeli commandos. Israel will not lift the sea blockade that prevents more rockets from reaching Gaza where they will be launched into Israel at Israeli civilians.

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April 25, 2010

Israeli-Palsetinian Talks Within Two Weeks?

After the recent tension between Jerusalem and Washington, Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak has spoken optimistically about the launching of Israeli-Palestinian proximity talks within two weeks. U.S. mediator George Mitchell has returned to the area, meeting Israeli and Palestinian leaders in Jerusalem and Ramallah with the aim of getting the negotiations underway. After rejecting an American and Palestinian demand to freeze building in eastern Jerusalem, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has offered a package of concessions that may lead to a break in the logjam. However, back in Washington the State Department spokesman has cautioned against an imminent breakthrough. Analyst David Essing assesses the current state of play.

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March 19, 2010

Israel Seeks Obama Solution

 President Barack Obama has said there is no crisis between the U.S. and Israel and the special relations with the Israel people will not go way. However Obama also told Fox News that he was still awaiting answers from Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu. Answers to demands made by Secretary Hillary Clinton required to rectify the Israeli announcement, during Vice President Joe Biden's visit, on 1600 new apartments to be built beyond the old 1967 line (Green Line) in Jerusalem. Analyst David Essing is of the view the Obama administration is now pressing Israel for concessions that will not only persuade West Bank Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to participate in the proximity talks but to also jump-start the U.S. mediated negotiation once they get going.

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March 13, 2010

Netanyahu Goverment's Fiasco

 U.S. Vice President Joe Biden has come and gone but the dust is still swirling around Middle East sand storm in his wake. Biden, a close personal friend of Netanyahu, was sent by President Barack Obama, on a good will mission to clear the air with Netanyahu, kick off the long awaited proximity talks between Israel and the Palestinians and to make sure that Washington and Jerusalem are on the same page in the confrontation with Iran. And smack in the middle, the startling announcement by Israel's Interior Ministry that a planning committee had approved 1600 new housing in the east Jerusalem neighborhood of Ramat Shlomo. Analyst David Essing is of the view that the insult to Biden, unintentional as it was, will paradoxically enable the Obama administration to exercise more leverage over the Israeli Prime Minister.

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January 16, 2010

Israel's Diplomatic Debacle & Mossad Success

 Defense Minister Ehud's Barak's official visit to Turkey has been saved by the eleventh hour apology of Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon. Barak will be able to examine what can be salvaged from the relations after Ayalon tried to humiliate Turkish Ambassador Ahmet Oguz Celikkol while delivering a protest over Turkey's verbal attacks on Israel and the screening of anti- Semitic programs on Turkish TV. The Barak visit will now have added importance at a time that relations between Jerusalem and Ankara have hit an all time low. On the other hand, none other than the Egyptian newspaper Al-Aharam credits Mossad chief Meir Dagan with stalling Iran's nuclear weapons project.

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January 02, 2010

Israel, Iran & New Year

Israel has entered 2010 facing with a wide range of both dangers and prospects in the security and foreign affairs arena. The Iranian regime is now battling for its political survival at home against a mounting campaign for democratic reform while time has apparently run out for its clandestine nuclear weapons project. At year's end, the international reach of Islamist terrorism struck again at Schiphol Airport and at a CIA base in Afghanistan, while a divided Palestinian camp remained split over terrorism or negotiations. Analyst David Essing assesses the situation from an Israeli perspective.

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December 18, 2009

Iran's Smoking Gun Nears Mushroom Cloud!

 After months of fruitless dialogue, this week's expose by the London Times about an Iranian nuclear 'trigger' and the launching of a new long range Iranian missile capable of delivering a nuclear warhead indicated that Iran may be closer to developing a nuclear weapon than previously suspected. Analyst David Essing assesses these latest developments from the Israeli perspective and what Israelis think about U.S. President Barack Obama and their own country's leadership at this crucial time.

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November 20, 2009

Peres, Gilo, Israeli Pilots & Iran

At week's end, speculation again swirled around the possibility that a German mediator may be closing a long awaited prisoner exchange between Israel and Hamas - captured IDF soldier Gilad Shalit in return for hundreds of Palestinian terrorists. Meanwhile, the Israeli decision to build 900 housing units in the Jerusalem neighborhood Gilo, after Prime minister Binyamin Netanyahu agreed to U.S. President Barack Obama's demand for a settlement freeze on the West Bank, is a new source of friction. But while these events were dominating the headlines, Iran for the umpteenth time, declared it would not concede on enriching uranium. Obama warned of 'consequences'. Meanwhile it was reported that while Israeli pilots were to undergo a refresher course to cope with the mental stress in attacking long range targets.

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September 25, 2009

Netanyahu Settles Score With UN

Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu first caught the eye of the Israeli public when he served as an eloquent Ambassador to the U.N. He has now returned to the General Assembly to make a masterful defense of the Jewish state's struggle for survival, not only in the Middle East, but also in UN bodies that single her for 'special treatment'.

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September 21, 2009

Obama's Middle East Puzzle?

 Over the past seventy-hours, a series of events have been swirling around the Middle East and farther afield. U.S. President Barack Obama has in fact launched what amounts to a new initiative. On one hand, Obama's strategy is to try and halt Iran's nuclear weapons drive on one tract, in tandem with an Israeli-Palestinian summit at the UN. IsraCast tries to fit the pieces of Obama's puzzle into place.

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September 16, 2009

'Goldstone Report Makes A Mockery Of History'

 Israel has reacted angrily to the Goldstone Report into the IDF Operation 'Cast Lead' launched last December to suppress more than eight years of Palestinian rocketing of Israeli civilians from Gaza. The enquiry, commissioned by the U.N. Commission on Human Rights with headquarters in Geneva, is controlled by Arab delegates and focuses almost exclusively on bashing the Jewish state. The Isracast assessment: It's little better than a 'kangaroo-court' in the eyes of Israeli officials and public opinion at large. President Shimon Peres, as usual, has summarized Israel's reaction in a nutshell.

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September 14, 2009

Israel Mourns Capt. Assaf Ramon

 Less than twenty-four hours after the crash of Capt. Assaf Ramon, Israelis were trying to grasp what has become not only a national but also a painful personal tragedy. Capt. Assaf Ramon, the son of national hero Col. Ilan Ramon, Israel's first astronaut killed in the Columbia spaceship disaster, had also been killed and while training as a fighter pilot. He had been following in his father's footsteps, but no one had dared to think that Assaf would also be killed on duty. That would be too much.

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July 21, 2009

Netanyahu & Obama Clash Over Jerusalem

Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and U.S. President Barack Obama Have again squared off, this time over Israeli construction in the eastern Jerusalem neighborhood of Sheik Jarah. The two leaders had already crossed after Obama declared that all building in existing Israeli settlements on the West Bank must stop, something Netanyahu rejects. Although Special Middle East Envoy George Mitchell  and Defense Minister Ehud Barak have met twice trying to break the impasse over the settlement issue, the Israeli leader has dug in his heels over what he views as Israel's sovereign right to build in east Jerusalem. IsraCast says the latest clash is actually over Obama's insistence that Jerusalem will be up for negotiation in future Israeli-Palestinian talks while Netanyahu contends that Jerusalem is non- negotiatble as far as he is concerned.

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