just a quick snap shot to demonstrate that when the rest of the Middle East (which of course is being reported on) any minor sniffle in Israel immediately pushes the horrors in Syria or the disintegration of Lebanon (even Jordan) lower down on the agenda. Weird.
KERRY MEETS WITH DIVIDED ISRAELI GOVERNMENT
Also in other media.
As US Secretary of State John Kerry arrives in Israel on Thursday, he will meet with a government deeply divided in their views on the creation of a Palestinian state.
The Israeli chief negotiator Tzipi Livni promoted her vision over ending the long conflict with the Palestinians to a committee in the national assembly on Tuesday.
However, the extreme right wing within the government is in disagreement. (My underlining)
“Two states for two people might be the standpoint of Netanyahu; it is however not the official standpoint of the government”, Orit Struch of Bayit Yehudi pointed out at the same occasion.
Against a Palestinian state.
The leader of the party, Naftali Bennett, is a vocal opponent of the establishment of a Palestinian state in the occupied West Bank and the Gaza strip. He holds the opinion such a state entity in the end will be ruled by militant Islamists; having the destruction of Israel as their end goal.
Instead the former Jewish settler leader holds the opinion Israel should annex much of the West Bank; conquered in the 1967 war.
Bennett explains he has not attacked renewed peace talks in public, in a stalemate since 2012, simply because he has no faith in the success of these talks.
“It is our land”, Struck says about the West Bank, using the biblical terms of Judea and Samaria.
Such conflicts within the coalition government heralds political troubles to Netanyahu; if John Kerry succeeds with his peace offensive.
Netanyahu has given his support to a Palestinian state side by side with Israel in a future peace accord. However, he sets as a precondition that it has to be demilitarized. Also, he points out there is no question about returning to pre-1967 borders.
Additionally, he demands the Palestinians to recognize Israel as a Jewish state. This demand is seen by the Palestinians as equal to abstaining from the right of return- also a main issue in the peace process.
In spite of obvious divides within the Israeli government, Silvan Shalom, a minister and a member of Netanyahu’s Likud party, states the ball is in the Palestinian court.
“We await an answer by the Palestinians. Are they willing to resume peace negotiations? The ball lies in their court”, Shalom holds as his opinion.
The Palestinians appear to disagree.
Counselor to the Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas, Nimir Hammad, is skeptical towards John Kerry’s opportunity towards succeeding with his peace proposals. The Israeli government will do everything in its power to foil this offensive, Hammad told radio station Voice of Palestine on Tuesday.
Kerry will arrive in Israel on Thursday-his fourth visit as a secretary of state. There is little doubt his attempt to resuscitate the peace process will be very difficult.
OBSTACLE ON THE ROAD TO PEACE
Dagen 2012 05 22 p 23, Nan Jacques Zilberdik, Not Online
Palestinian Media Watch spokesperson writes a long op-ed on FM Barth Eide’s handling of the scandal concerning funding of Palestinian terrorist prisoners wages; criticizing the FM over statements made on PMW and continued funding of PA; asking for a meeting with the FM.
FRIED CHICKEN COMES TO RESCUE OF GAZA TUNNEL RUNNERS
Aftenposten 2013 05 22 p 21, Caitlin Dewey
Translation of this Washington Post article:
And by the way; while you can get hold of KFC in Gaza, you cannot in Oslo.
HERE, ISRAEL IS FIGHTING ASSAD’S FORCES
Verdens Gang 2013 05 24, Erlend Skevik
Links to IDF video.
Quoting Bjørn Herman of the IDF, this article is commenting upon recent fighting on the Israeli-Syrian border, between Syrian regime forces and the IDF.
Israel has directed clear warnings to the Assad regime; stating incursions and provocations will not be tolerated, also the Israeli public has received warnings over a genuine threat of war, both by the leadership of the IDF and the PM.
KERRY STRUGGLE WITH PEACE BROKING IN THE MIDDLE EAST
John Kerry meets with Israelis and Palestinians, no concrete results of meetings are published. Netanyahu states Israel willing to resume to peace process, Tzipi Livni says government is divided, also states majority of Israelis are in favor of peace.
ASSAD ON THE OFFENSIVE
Verdens Gang 2013 05 24 p 36, 37, Asgeir Ueland, Not Online
Interesting op-ed, pointing to the fact the Assad regime actually seems to have strengthened its position lately, due to support by Iran and Russia; and also Hezbollah’s manpower, being far from the defeat recently predicted by experts. The author also comments on Israel’s role, stating it is likely Israel will intervene if Hezbollah is given material support, but not elsewise. He states the conflict is likely to be ongoing for years.