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Palestinian Authority

Support for Palestine grows in Israel
Dr. Abdul Ruff Colachal - 2/8/2014
It looks very pleasant that the peace god smiles to the besieged Palestinians with increasing good will emanating from Israel. That is indeed a positive sign of justice, albeit very late, for the long oppressed people of Palestine.

Palestine: Israel Set To Extend Its Sovereignty Into West Bank
David Singer - 6/30/2012
A confluence of events is increasingly pointing to Israel taking action in the very near future to extend its sovereignty over a substantial part - if not all - of the 61% of the West Bank it has totally controlled since 1967 - unless Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas ends his posturing and submits to considerable loss of face by announcing he is now prepared to resume negotiations with Israel without preconditions of any kind.

Palestine in Tatters - Obama’s Obsolescent Opinion Scarcely Matters
David Singer - 3/21/2012
The much vaunted reconciliation between Hamas and Fatah has become yet another missed opportunity and non-event following revelations by the Palestinian Central Elections Commission (CEC) chief electoral officer - Hisham Kuhail - that the May 4 date set for presidential and parliamentary elections in the West Bank and Gaza will not eventuate.

Palestine Question: America is deceiving both Palestinians and the Jews
Abid Mustafa - 10/13/2011
On October 6th 2011, the Executive Council of the United Nations Education, Science and Culture Organization (UNESCO) approved Palestine’s entry into this UN agency as member.

The Fallacy of Palestinian Statehood and the Arab Betrayal
Abdul Wahid - 9/26/2011
This week Mahmoud Abbas has visited New York to apply to the United Nations for it to recognise the Palestinian authority as a fully-fledged member state.

Palestinians want their own state and vote with their feet
Alexander Maistrovoy - 7/18/2011
"In a war of ideas, it is people who get killed". (Stanisław Jerzy Lec)

Whither Palestine?
Rabbi Dr. Daniel M. Zucker - 6/20/2011
After President Barack H. Obama’s two major speeches about the Middle East, first at the State Department on Thursday, May 19, 2011, and then at the AIPAC convention on the next Sunday, May 22, 2011, as well as Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin “Bibi” Netanyahu’s two speeches, first at the AIPAC convention on Monday May 23, 2011, and then before a combined session of Congress on Tuesday, May 24, 2011, which followed his unusually forthright meeting with President Obama at the White House on Friday, May 20, 2011, we may ask where is the president trying to go on the Palestinian state question, and how likely is he to have any success, given Palestinian and Israeli positions.

A New Palestinian Lie About Israel and The Need to Discount Such Stories Systematically
Prof. Barry Rubin - 4/1/2011
What happens when the New York Times publishes, with no investigation, an atrocity story about Israel that is not only false but ridiculously so, based on the most obvious starting point: death by tear-gas doesn't happen?

Thanks to International Aid, Gaza Is Going To Be A Well-Off Islamist Republic
Prof. Barry Rubin - 12/13/2010
The Gaza Strip is doing really well economically and the Hamas regime seems set to go on forever. It's raking in the aid money but every dollar and every project is shaped to ensure that Hamas remains in power, can return to violence in future and...wreck everything again. "There are a slew of products here, and beautiful restaurants. Is this the Gaza we have been hearing about?" asked a Sudanese official arriving there, as quoted by the Palestinian news agency Maan. "Where is the siege? I don't see it in Gaza. I wish Sudan's residents could live under the conditions of the Gazan siege."

Six Years Ago, Yasir Arafat Died, but His Legacy Still Prevails
Prof. Barry Rubin - 11/13/2010
Six years ago, on November 11, 2004, Yasir Arafat died. On that occasion, former President Bill Clinton explained why he wouldn't attend Arafat's funeral: "I regret that in 2000 he missed the opportunity to bring [Palestine] into being...." Not Israel, but Arafat did so.

Terror Attack Near Hebron: Not an Incident But a Revelation About What's Happening
Prof. Barry Rubin - 9/18/2010
An isolated fragment of news, a tragic story, or just another act of terrorism? What's necessary, however, is to fit events into a broader picture and so it is with the latest attack by Hamas, killing four Israelis driving near Hebron.

The Terrorist Whose Daughter Was Cured
Prof. Barry Rubin - 7/25/2010
This is a remarkable story in human terms but there is an extremely important point for understanding the Middle East embedded in it as well. On June 14, Palestinian terrorists opened fire on a police car traveling on a road, en route from Beersheba to Jerusalem. One policeman, Yeheshua Sofer was killed. Two others were wounded. Sofer was due to be married in three months. It took a month but members of the cell were finally captured. They spoke quite freely about this attack and others they had planned for killing Israelis.

Palestinians are all take, no give
Ted Belman - 7/10/2010
Last week I attended a seminar on the legal status of the territories hosted by Media Central for reporters and correspondents. Professor Ruth Lapidot, renowned scholar on international law, and a young female Arab lawyer, Nada Kiswanson representing al Haq presented. al Haq, funded by the EU, prepares legal analysis from the Arab point of view.

West Says: We've Helped Poor Gazans
Prof. Barry Rubin - 7/6/2010
Here is what President Barack H. Obama said after his meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu: "We believe that there is a way to make sure that the people of Gaza are able to prosper economically, while Israel is able to maintain its legitimate security needs in not allowing missiles and weapons to get to Hamas."

What's Really Not Happening in the West Bank
Prof. Barry Rubin - 6/22/2010
I read an article on Foreign Policy blog which, like many things I see on the Middle East, convinces me of the precise opposite conclusion to what the author wants me to think. The article, by Hussein Ibish, a Palestinian activist in the United States, is entitled: "While No One's Looking, the Palestinians Are Building a State: Now it's time for the rest of the world to pitch in. "

What's Really Happening in Gaza
Prof. Barry Rubin - 6/22/2010
Elsewhere, I have explained in great detail the changes in Israeli policy as well as the implications of Western policy in the Gaza Strip: economic normalization meaning also normalization of the existence of a Gaza Hamas-ruled statelet.

What Do the New Israel-Palestinian Indirect Talks Mean?
Prof. Barry Rubin - 5/4/2010
The question of the day is whether the Israel-Palestinian Authority (PA) indirect talks will make progress in the "peace process" or result in failure. One wonders at this point how many naive people believe that peace is at hand, and how many misled people think that the lack of peace is Israel's fault.

A Tale of Two Palestinian Authorities
Jonathan Spyer, Ph.D. - 4/27/2010
Four years after the Hamas victory in elections to the Palestinian Legislative Council, and three years since the movement's successful coup in Gaza, the split in the Palestinian national movement has an increasing look of permanence about it. This has major implications for the currently frozen diplomatic process.

Palestinian Leaders Do It Again!
Prof. Barry Rubin - 4/14/2010
With their unerring skill at erring, Palestinian Authority (PA) leaders are throwing away still another opportunity President Barack Obama is giving them. If Obama is the most pro-Palestinian president in history, his counterparts don't seem to appreciate it very much. It is the Palestinian leadership, not Israel, that will ultimately make Obama look like and be a failure in all of his peace process efforts.

The Legacy of Mahmoud al-Mabhouh
Jonathan Spyer, Ph.D. - 3/29/2010
Wherever departed Hamas official Mahmoud al-Mabhouh is now, he is presumably enjoying the considerable trouble the nature of his exit is causing his Israeli enemies.

Hamas Fans Flames of Islamic Anger Following 'Day of Rage'
Jonathan Spyer, Ph.D. - 3/19/2010
Hamas leaders are seeking to escalate Palestinian unrest over the supposed Israeli threat to Muslim holy sites in Jerusalem. In addition to reflecting the movement's ideological goals, this effort makes good political sense.

Muslim Brotherhood Cleric versus Palestinian 'President'
Prof. Barry Rubin - 1/26/2010
Forget about the moderate mythology fed the Western public by its media. Forget the comforting nonsense about reasonable masses held back from being humanitarian democrats only by manipulative dictatorships. Here's a glimpse of what the region is really like.

Palestinian Authority Sets its New Strategy
Prof. Barry Rubin - 1/2/2010
We now have Mahmoud Abbas's answer regarding short-term Palestinian Authority (PA) strategy. He says that if Israel stops all construction now-in Jerusalem and the 3000 apartments being completed-and accepts in advance the 1967 borders and there will be peace within six months. This is the basic story we've been hearing since around 1988: one or more Israeli concessions and everyone will live happily ever after.

Why All the Excuses for Palestinian Intransigence Don't Make Sense
Prof. Barry Rubin - 12/16/2009
The Arab-Israeli, or Israel-Palestinian, conflict is the most misrepresented subject in the entire world. The most basic facts are often distorted and the most fantastical of narratives provided, even in college classrooms, about what has actually happened.

The Palestinians Tell the World Their Strategy
Prof. Barry Rubin - 12/16/2009
If you want to understand what's really going on in the alleged Israel-Palestinian peace process-beyond the babble that progress is being made, it's all Israel's fault, and everyone is working hard on it-here's what you need to know.

Hillary Clinton Announces that Palestinians are the Obstacles to Peace
Prof. Barry Rubin - 11/3/2009
Yesterday I discussed the significance of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s praise for Israel’s policy during her trip to Jerusalem, saying Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had offered unprecedented concessions to get peace talks started again.

Palestinians Choose the Illusion of "Victory" Over Negotiated Peace
Prof. Barry Rubin - 10/21/2009
This may be a very big development, a turning point. Palestinian Authority (PA) leaders are now openly complaining about President Barack Obama, saying he has hurt the Palestinian cause, by accepting less than a complete freeze of construction on settlements from Israel, pressuring PA leader Mahmoud Abbas to stand next to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for the president's UN photo opportunity, and pushing the Palestinian Authority to ease off on demanding the UN put sanctions against Israel over the Goldstone Commission issue.

Palestinian Prime Minister Rejects
Prof. Barry Rubin - 10/19/2009
Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Salam Fayyad complains about Israel’s offer to the Palestinians. "By all indications they have a Mickey Mouse state in mind," Fayyad said, using the Disney character's name as slang for unimportant or trivial. "It looks like it would not come close to what we have in mind."

Meet the Palestinians' Next Leader, Muhammad (Abu al-Mahir) Ghaneim
Prof. Barry Rubin - 10/3/2009
There’s nothing written about more often—and inaccurately—than the Palestinians, yet there is curiously little interest about the politics and ideology which governs their behavior. The same situation applies to the man s slated to become that movement's next leader, only the third to hold that post in 50 years, after Yasir Arafat and Mahmoud Abbas.

Palestinians Have No Legitimiate Territorial Claims
Ted Belman - 9/25/2009
Yesterday Pres Obama addressed the UNGA on the subject of the conflict between Arabs and Jews conflict and had this to say;

Hamas Seeks New Doctrine after Gaza War Failures
Jonathan Spyer, Ph.D. - 9/16/2009
Hamas has undertaken a major process of examination and investigation into its deeply flawed performance in the course of Operation Cast Lead, sources say. The review process is aimed at developing a new doctrine for Hamas to enable it to achieve its ambition of rivaling Hizbullah in its abilities. It remains to be seen if the reforms will deliver an improved result in renewed future hostilities with Israel or whether, as with Operation Cast Lead, Israel will once again display an ability to frustrate and set Hamas back on the tactical level.

Al-Qaida-Style Islamism Comes to Gaza
Jonathan Spyer, Ph.D. - 8/25/2009
Quiet has now returned to the Gaza Strip after the weekend violence which claimed the lives of 28 people. The last of the funerals of the Jund Ansar Allah fighters killed in the suppression of the organization by Hamas authorities has taken place. This episode demonstrated the tight hold which Hamas maintains on the Gaza Strip.

Palestinian Politics and The Peace Process: The Looming Gigantic Danger
Prof. Barry Rubin - 8/20/2009
Once Abbas appoints four more to make a Fatah Central Committee of 22 people, at least two-thirds will be old-style Fatah bureaucrats, with almost all the rest younger Fatah bureaucrats. Of the 18 elected, at least 5 are hardliners who don’t even accept the peace process and Oslo agreement and the rest are Abbas’s allies or lieutenants.

Facts are unimportant in Jerusalem
Maurice Ostroff - 8/20/2009
A Google search for Israel evictions yields 195,000 results, almost all condemning Israel because two families were evicted from homes in Jerusalem's Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood on August 2, implying that this was done by the government solely for political reasons. All reports ignored the fact that the action was not initiated by the present Israel government and that it was not a plot hatched by the new government. The saga began as long ago as 1972. The eviction resulted from a Supreme Court ruling in a protracted legal battle over ownership of properties in the area. The applicants claimed ...

Fatah Congress Election: Surprising Results
Prof. Barry Rubin - 8/20/2009
Four more will be appointed by PLO and Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas, who will also serve as the committee's chief. Only two (three when Abbas is added) who will continue from the old Committee. So indeed this is a generational transition and a transition from returnees who were in Tunis to indigenous West Bank people.

Fatah Congress: Peace As A Very Low Priority
Prof. Barry Rubin - 8/8/2009
As so often happens, the debate over Fatah’s policy misses the point. The central issue has become Fatah’s theme of saying it wants peace but it is ready to go to resistance, that is, armed struggle.

Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Salam Fayyad's Response: A Narrative He Dares Not Speak
Prof. Barry Rubin - 7/27/2009
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s big policy speech received global attention. Not so that of his Palestinian counterpart, Salam Fayyad. Fayyad’s June 22 presentation deserves careful analysis.

Murder, He Said: Palestinian Politics Fragments Further
Prof. Barry Rubin - 7/27/2009
Reality keeps impinging on the four main illusions regarding the Israel-Palestinian conflict, the ideas that: peace is possible in the not-distant future; that there’s a Palestinian negotiating partner which wants a two-state solution; that there’s a serious Palestinian negotiating partner capable of reaching and implementing an agreement; and that the failure to end the conflict is due to Israel.

Demilitarized Palestinian State?
Prof. Arieh Eldad - Member of Knesset - 7/14/2009
Once upon a time, there was such a state. "I don't think there's a Palestinian nation. There's an Arab nation. I don't think there's a Palestinian nation. That's a colonial invention. Since when were there Palestinians? I think there's only an Arab nation. Until the end of the 19th century, Palestine was the southern part of Greater Syria."

Hamas Denying Palestinians Energy Billions
Peter Glover and Michael Economides - 6/20/2009
Gaza on the Mediterranean, with an offshore natural gas resource worth an estimated $4 billion and with Palestinian statehood believed an imminent proposition, should be looking at the brightest possible future. But still abject poverty and hopelessness rack Gaza and the standard explanation by many Arabs and Western media is to depict the Palestinians as in a permanent state of Israeli-inflicted victimhood.

Why Isn't the Palestinian Authority Moderate?
Prof. Barry Rubin - 6/4/2009
So dreadful was the performance of Palestinian Authority (PA) leader Mahmoud Abbas during his meeting with President Barack Obama that even the New York Times took notice. Usually, the Palestinians are exempt from any hint of the real world criteria applied to others.

Hamas Says `Kill Next Week’; Media Perceives Moderation
Prof. Barry Rubin - 5/13/2009
Nothing is funnier than when someone wants to avoid an obvious conclusion.
Nothing is sadder than people being borne away on waves of wishful thinking.

Following up on rewriting the clearly extremist words of Iran 's leader on the basis of wishful thinking and reinterpreting the equally extremist words of Syria's leader based on wishful thinking ,it is now Hamas's turn.

The Hamas Lobby
Jonathan Spyer, Ph.D. - 4/29/2009
A meeting was meant to take place on Wednesday, April 22nd, in the Grimond Room at Portcullis House, adjoining the House of Commons in London. The planned meeting was titled "Talk with Hamas" and was meant to feature a video link to Damascus.

Palestinian Moderates Want Peace--With Hamas, Not Israel
Prof. Barry Rubin - 4/8/2009
To see what’s happening—and what’s wrong—with Palestinian politics, consider Muhammad Dahlan. In him is embodied the ideological and strategic straitjacket, preventing Palestinians from making peace and getting a state of their own.

Fatah v. Hamas: Be My Brother or I'll Kill You
Prof. Barry Rubin - 1/28/2009
There was an election on Hamas’s mind when it cancelled the ceasefire with Israel, leading to the Gaza war. But it wasn’t the February Israeli election but rather the January Palestinian non-election.

The Predictable Palestinian Propaganda Ploy
Leslie J. Sacks - 1/28/2009
The successful lies of Dr. Hanan Ashwari epitomize the (most recent) Palestinian victory in the Gaza propaganda sweepstakes. Fox News uses her regularly to provide the Palestinian side of "fair and balanced." This longtime PLO spokeswoman, of course, is anything but. She harangues the audience with emotional and outrageous untruths, with nary a criticism. The interviewers, it seems, go mute in the face of such passionate, well-spoken English from the West Bank.

Is Gaza’s Islamic University an Educational Institution?
Dr. Richard L. Cravatts, Ph.D. - 1/27/2009
Taking a cue from a similar effort by its morally-imbecilic union brethren in Britain, the Ontario chapter of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) made the smarmy announcement that, “as a protest against the December 29 bombing of the Islamic University in Gaza,” it would introduce a resolution seeking to ban Israeli academics from speaking, teaching, or conducting research at Ontario university campuses. Acceding to an appeal from the Palestinian Federation of Unions of University Professors and Employees, Sid Ryan, president of CUPE Ontario, announced that the union had decided, no ...

Is This Leadership in Gaza?
Manuela Paraipan - 1/10/2009
The situation in Gaza is brutally clear. Hamas ended the truce. It said it has no interest in either prolonging it or entering into a different kind of agreement that would ensure a relative calm on both sides. Furthermore, Hamas marked the end of the truce by firing rockets into Israel. What should have Israel done? Ignore it? It couldn't since the rockets were the handiwork of what it considers a terrorist group on a sovereign country and its citizens. Many have responded, saying that the response is disproportionate, without questioning the wisdom of the decision taken by Hamas to end the truce in the first place.

Hamas Is Perpetrating The death of its People
Elias Bejjani - 1/8/2009
The genuine sympathy and empathy with the civilian massive casualties, disastrous human sufferings and extensive material loses that are sadly taking place in Gaza, should not by any mean derail or blind the actual focus of the free world countries and Human Rights’advocacy organizations away from the prime causes of the actual problem that led to the current Israeli-Palestinian bloody confrontation.

They're Dictators and Terrorists But What Clean Streets!
Prof. Barry Rubin - 7/3/2008
Tamas celebrated its first anniversary of power in the Gaza Strip amidst massive misinterpretations regarding the situation there.

UNRWA: Barrier to Peace
Jonathan Spyer, Ph.D. - 6/2/2008
The United Nations Relief Works Agency (UNRWA) was created under the jurisdiction of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), with the unique responsibility of solely aiding the Palestinians. Due to this special status, the UNRWA perpetuates, rather than resolves, the Palestinian refugee issue, and therefore serves as a major obstacle toward resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Like no other UN body, UNRWA's definition of refugees includes not only the refugees themselves, but also their descendents. Moreover, refugees keep their status even if they have gained citizenship. UNRWA ...

The Palestinians' Self-Made Naqba
Prof. Barry Rubin - 5/21/2008
It’s become fashionable to match celebration of Israel ’s founding (though part of the media can’t even admit Israelis are celebrating) with Palestinian marking of their 1948 “nakba” catastrophe. Yet whose fault is it that they didn’t use those six decades constructively? And who killed the independent Palestinian state alongside Israel that was part of the partition plan? Answer: The Arab states and Palestinian leadership themselves.

UNRWA: Refuge Of Rejectionism
Barry Rubin, Asaf Romirowsky, and Jonathan Spyer - 5/20/2008
On the surface, the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) seems a humanitarian group helping Palestinian refugees. In reality, it actually helps destroy the chance of Arab-Israeli peace, promotes terrorism, and holds Palestainians back from rebuilding their lives.

Amin al-Husaini and the Holocaust. What Did the Grand Mufti Know?
Wolfgang G. Schwanitz, Ph.D. - 5/15/2008
Amin al-Husaini, the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, remains a controversial figure. The Palestinian leader, who was born in 1895 and died in 1974, first sparked controversy during his lifetime. As an officer in the Ottoman army during the First World War, he implemented the German idea of organizing jihad and terror behind enemy lines. (See my discussion here.) Later, he led the resistance against the British mandate authority in Palestine during uprisings in 1929 and in 1936. He fiercely opposed Jewish settlement.

The Brutal Truth About Hamas Depravity
Tom Carew - 4/25/2008
The strict use of the term depravity has been much considered by legal and psychiatric experts in USA, where many State laws provide for severe penalties where a crime can be judged depraved or heinous, atrocious, cruel, in regared to either the [a] intent, [b] actions, or [c] attitude, which is displayed in the criminal act.

The Palestinian Refugee Issue: Rhetoric v. Reality
Sidney Zabludoff - 4/17/2008
The sixty-year-old Palestinian refugee issue has little connection with reality. It has become solely a bargaining chip used by Arabs and Palestinians in peace talks with Israel and, as such, is a distraction from the real issues of terrorism and boundaries. Indeed, continuing to call Palestinians refugees is a misnomer. They no longer live in tents or temporary quarters. In addition, the Palestinian refugee issue is unique. Since 1920 all other major refugee crises involving the exchange of religious or ethnic populations, while creating hardships, were dealt with in a single generation. Mea...

Palestinian 'Moderates' Ensure Extremism
Prof. Barry Rubin - 4/10/2008
“Rice Wins Concessions from Israel,” read the Washington Post headline after Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice’s recent visit. Rice herself told reporters her goal was to further Israel-Palestinian Authority (PA) talks by getting Israeli concessions to “improve the quality of life” for Palestinians. She listed ten different Israeli concessions including: removing 50 roadblocks, easing checkpoint procedures, increasing travel and work permits, backing economic projects, letting 700 U.S.-trained PA security men deploy, and giving the PA armored vehicles and night-vision goggles.

Condi's Contortions Can't Create Palestine
David Singer - 4/4/2008
US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has expressed her amazement at the scope of the concessions Israel has agreed to make to the Palestinian Authority in a 35 page booklet given to her by Israel's Defence Minister - Ehud Barak - during her latest visit to Israel this week.

Palestinian Politics: Onward and Downward
Prof. Barry Rubin - 4/3/2008
A recent Washington Post column, entitled, “Let's Help the Good Guys in the West Bank,” provided what it thought of as good news: “Fortunately, there is a smart and honest leader of these forces: Salam Fayyad, an apolitical economist (with a doctorate from the University of Texas) who is prime minister of the Palestinian Authority.”

John McCain, Human Nature and Gaza
Imran Khan - 3/23/2008
United States republican presidential candidate, John McCain on 20th March visited Sderot, an Israeli town hit frequently by Palestinian rockets from nearby Gaza Strip. His visit was a part of a fact-finding mission to the Middle East. He has said

What to Do About Gaza: The Realistic Scenario
Prof. Barry Rubin - 3/19/2008
Not only is there no good solution to the Gaza problem, there’s no “solution” at all, But in the Middle East , solutions are rare; what’s needed is the best, imperfect, option among five alternatives: Current policy. Israel absorbs damage and casualties in Sderot and some other places. Few are affected; almost all the country functions normally. International pressure and casualties are limited. Israel hits rocket launchers, terrorist bases, and leading terrorists periodically. Eventually, there will be an anti-rocket defense.

Ending The Ping Pong Game In Gaza
David Singer - 3/19/2008
United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon seems unable to comprehend that Israel is at war with Hamas - declared a hostile entity by Israel and a proscribed terrorist organisation by America and the European Union.

Paris, Palestine and Pledges
David Singer - 3/18/2008
Tony Blair has found that it doesn't take too much to wipe the smile off one's face when trying to resolve the competing Arab and Jewish claims to the territory once called Palestine - known today as Israel, Jordan, the West Bank and Gaza.

Power Plays in Palestine
David Singer - 3/4/2008
Jordan's decision to begin supplying electricity to Jericho last Monday - coupled with Egypt's intention to do exactly the same in Gaza - sends a clear message that perhaps the lights are at last being turned on for the first time in 40 years - possibly heralding the beginning of the end to the gloom and darkness that has marked the long running Arab-Jewish conflict over the territory once called Palestine.

Who Owns The Palestine Card?
Prof. Barry Rubin - 2/21/2008
In the course of Hizballah's threats against Israel, following the assassination of that group's international terrorism director, Imad Mugniyah, there was an extremely important point that speaks to the Middle East's future.

Fatah Falls Apart?
Prof. Barry Rubin - 2/19/2008
Rather than unite in the face of the Hamas challenge and the task of gaining support from the West Bank ’s people, Fatah seems to be collapsing. Or perhaps the feuds are not only over power but who gets to control the almost $7 billion scheduled to be given the Fatah-controlled Palestinian Authority (PA) over the next three years. A contributing factor is that Fatah has said it will hold a congress in March, the first full such meeting in almost 20 years.

Gaza: All Options Are Bad
Ted Belman - 2/19/2008
Under the headline IDF exit plan: Gaza invasion will bring multinational force Yaakov Katz reports in THE JERUSALEM POST today,

Israel is considering a large-scale incursion into the Gaza Strip during which it would present an ultimatum to the international community for the deployment of a multinational force as the only condition under which it would withdraw, defense officials have told The Jerusalem Post.

Israpundit reported on this plan a few days ago sugge...

Time For A New And Different Palestine Mandate
Ted Belman - 2/12/2008
Things are not going well for the two-state solution. Palestinian PM Fayed said that no agreement will be reached this year. The latest poll in the territories discloses that since the Annapolis meeting, Fatah is losing popularity. Hamas has taken centre stage with its breach of the Gaza border. Livni acknowledges that Hamas must be dealt with first before the peace process can succeed. Though some say the look of the final deal is known others say the parties are farther apart than ever.

Hamas's Gaza Debacle
Prof. Barry Rubin - 1/30/2008
Imagine a very secret meeting held somewhere in the Gaza Strip. Around a table sit various Hamas bigwigs and their leader makes the following speech:

Fatah's Politics Make Peace Impolitic
Prof. Barry Rubin - 1/29/2008
T.S. Elliot wrote memorably in "The Hollow Men": Between the idea/And the reality/Between the motion/And the act/Falls the Shadow

Gaza - Stateless, Leaderless, Mindless and Powerless
David Singer - 1/29/2008
"A humanitarian crisis" is how the Arab League described Gaza as it was plunged into darkness when its only power plant was shut down three days after Israel ceased the delivery of fuel supplies to the trouble-plagued territory. Fuel supplies have now been resumed but continued supply is certain to be disrupted.

This Is War
Ted Belman - 1/29/2008
Now nobody can ignore reality. Disengagement from Gaza has permitted a war machine to be developed there that includes a standing army larger than Israel’s. It has unlimited funds and no need to work for a living. It is supported by the west.

Empowering Lies
Prof. Barry Rubin - 1/13/2008
What if a major news story is made up? What if it's just Hamas propaganda without being true? And what if this story is repeated around the world? Of course, nowadays it's not hard to imagine such things happening. When one gets to specific statistics, however, it should not be too easy to lie and get away with it.

Has the PLO lost the plot - or missed the boat?
David Singer - 1/2/2008
Instead of immediately entering into negotiations with Israel - the promised outcome of the recent Annapolis meeting called by President Bush - the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) has wasted the past two weeks demanding Israel totally cease all current building activities in the West Bank as a condition of those negotiations proceeding.

Paris Produces Palestinian Funding Frenzy
David Singer - 12/21/2007
Ninety Nations meeting in Paris this week fell over themselves in the rush to pledge US$7.4 billion dollars over the next three years - US$1.8 billion more than anticipated - in a desperate attempt to salvage their greatest failure in international diplomacy - the creation of a new Arab state between Israel and Jordan.

Hizb ut-Tahrir: A Rising Force In Palestinian Territories
Jonathan Spyer, Ph.D. - 12/14/2007
Demonstrations across the West Bank in protest of the Annapolis conference showcased the entry into the public eye of a new force in Palestinian politics - the pan-Islamic Hizb ut-Tahrir (Party of Liberation.) The party held a demonstration numbering 2,500 in Hebron, and one of its members was killed in subsequent clashes with Palestinian Authority police. Similar gatherings took place in other West Bank cities. Hizb ut-Tahrir's slow emergence from eccentric obscurity has been a subject of note among observers of Palestinian affairs in recent years. The anti-Annapolis demonstrations are the la...

Liberating the Palestine Liberation Organisation
David Singer - 12/14/2007
For better or for worse Israel and the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) are the parties that will - for the next 12 months - be negotiating the resolution of sovereignty in the West Bank with a view to ultimately creating a new independent Arab State between Israel and Jordan. These identical parties have been negotiating on the same issue for the last 14 years without the slightest sign of success.

Distortion of Palestinian Aid Politics
Prof. Barry Rubin - 12/11/2007
My favorite sentence of the week is this one: “Asking for record $5.8 billion in aid through 2010, Palestinians promise fiscal reform.” Karen Laub wrote on this subject for the Associated Press, December 5, 2007, recounting how the Palestinian Authority (PA) asked the world to double the aid it receives.

Finkelstein-ed Academia and the Truth about Palestine
Abukar Arman - 9/13/2007
The long bitter saga of DePaul University ’s scandalous decision to deny tenure to one of its most prolific and internationally renowned public intellectuals, Professor Norman Finkelstein, is officially over. But, not before bringing to light what some consider the most dangerous trend stifling intellectual freedom in the American academia and various circles of influence.

Palestine, Fantasy and Tales from the Arabian Nights
David Singer - 9/1/2007
President Bush's planned Middle East peace summit is rapidly being transformed into an event that will rival the Tales from the Arabian Nights. It seems no one is listening to what the Arabs are saying - which is nothing new. However you would think that after sixty years of drum beating by the likes of Arafat, Abbas, Haniyeh ,Assad Senior and Junior and the Arab League the message might have started getting through to opinion makers and influence peddlers in the West that the Arabs ( apart from Egypt and Jordan) are really not interested in a peace deal with Israel - that the demands they are...

Palestine - Where Size Really Matters
David Singer - 8/16/2007
False claims that Israel is 78% - not 17% - of historic Palestine whilst the West Bank and Gaza comprise the remaining 22% - not 5% - of historic Palestine have materially derailed efforts to resolve the issue of sovereignty in the West Bank and Gaza.

Tale of Four Op-Eds: The Media's Cooperation with Hamas' Public Relations' Campaign
Prof. Barry Rubin - 7/19/2007
“The Communists disdain to conceal their views and aims,” proclaimed the Communist Manifesto a century and a half ago. “They openly declare that their ends can be attained only by the forcible overthrow of all existing social conditions.” But this was before the age of public relations. Here is how it’s done today.

Do Not Arafatize Abbas
Nicholas M. Guariglia - 7/18/2007
What are we to make of Jimmy Carter’s most recent hysteria? Palestine has reached its two-state solution, albeit having nothing to do with Israel. One is a shoot-‘em-up gangland (West Bank), the other, recently seized by mask-clad Hamas killers, an urban jihadist slum (Gaza Strip). And yet Mr. Carter, with his twang, is castigating not Hamas or Fatah, which throw each other off roofs, but the United States for its “criminal” policy of not trying to reconcile the two terrorist factions together.

The Palestinians' Greek Tragedy
Prof. Barry Rubin - 7/15/2007
In this land, says a character in “Oedipus” by the ancient Greek playwright Euripides, “Who seeks shall find; Who sits with folded hands or sleeps is blind." Yet in most things concerned with this land of the Middle East, the blind don’t just sit with folded hands or sleep, they are running things.

The Fall of the House of Yasir
Prof. Barry Rubin - 7/12/2007
“DURING the whole of a dull, dark, and soundless day in the autumn of the year….I had been passing alone, on horseback, through a singularly dreary tract of country; and at length found myself, as the shades of the evening drew on, within view of the melancholy House of Usher….With the first glimpse of the building, a sense of insufferable gloom pervaded my spirit.” Thus, Edgar Alan Poe began his remarkable 1839 short story, “The Fall of the House of Usher.”

The Case Of The Murdered Palestinian Mouse
Prof. Barry Rubin - 7/8/2007
The Hamas satellite TV channel produced a children’s show Tomorrow’s Pioneers, which should have been called Tomorrow’s Suicide Bombers, designed to get children to kill Israelis, or Jews in general, and participate in a radical Islamist attempt at world conquest. We know this because that is what the show’s hosts and their mascot, the high-voiced Farfur the mouse (based on Mickey) said. International media often reported that the show only asked the children to “fight” or “resist” Israel but this was a clear misrepresentation of the program’s incitement to terrorism, antisemitism, and even—in a departure from past Hamas propaganda—calls for an Islamist-dominated planet.

Fatah: Our `Ally`
Prof. Barry Rubin - 7/7/2007
During World War One, Germany concluded that its chief ally, Austria-Hungary, was more of a burden than an asset. As one German official put it, being in that alliance was like being "shackled to a corpse." And more than a century earlier, it was said of the doomed French dynasty, the Bourbons, that they learned nothing and forgot nothing.

Gaza - Year Zero
Jonathan Spyer, Ph.D. - 7/3/2007
The Hamas coup that took place in Gaza last week is an event of historic importance. For the first time in the region, Islamist fighters took on the internationally recognised forces of a western-subsidised Arab nationalist client - and beat them hands down. Fatah was revealed to be the empty, corrupted shell that most Palestinians and many observers of Palestinian politics have known it to be for a long time. The implications of the bloody putsch in tiny, crowded Gaza have not yet presented themselves in full. But it is already possible to make a number of observations, and draw some tentative conclusions.

Our `Friend' Fatah
Prof. Barry Rubin - 6/29/2007
During World War One, Germany concluded that its chief ally, Austria-Hungary, was more of a burden than an asset. As one German official put it, that alliance was like being “shackled to a corpse.” And more than a century earlier, it was said of the doomed French dynasty, the Bourbons, that they learned nothing and forgot nothing.

Did the US order Fatah to take a dive?
Ted Belman - 6/28/2007
Did the US order Fatah to take a dive? I think so. Amir Taheri writing in NY POST, Can Hamas actually Rule? advises: "Fatah had some 60,000 armed men in Gaza, a strip of land covering some 65 square miles. It also had heavy cannons and rocket-propelled grenades, which Hamas lacked. Yet even Fatah?s four chief bases of al-Hawa, al-Muntadam, Sarayah and al-Safineh, claimed to be impregnable, fell in just a few hours, as their defenders fled."

Fund Palestinian moderates, not Mahmoud Abbas
Joseph Shier - 6/25/2007
Canada's Minister of Foreign Affairs, the Hon. Peter MacKay, is correct to call for a moderate Arab Palestinian leadership. But Mahmoud Abbas is no moderate. Promoting Abbas as a moderate will once again prevent the emergence of any genuinely moderate Palestinian Arab leadership.

Palestine: Partition and Propaganda
David Singer - 6/24/2007
President Bush and Israel's Prime Minister Ehud Olmert stubbornly and foolishly continue to push for the creation of an independent Palestinian State between Israel and Jordan, as Hamas and Fatah turn the proposed site for such a state - Gaza and the West Bank - into battlegrounds of blood, misery and privation for the Arab populations caught in their deadly crossfire.

The Decline and Fall of Palestinian National Movement
Prof. Barry Rubin - 6/21/2007
This article analyzes the breakdown of the Palestinian nationalist movement as resulting from the policies of Yasir Arafat and Fatah, the Palestinians' leaders for 35 years; the weaknesses of his successor, Mahmud Abbas (Abu Mazin); the movement's overall strategy and ideology, and how Hamas will seek to consolidate and perpetuate its own rule.

Palestine, Paralysis and Plato
David Singer - 6/19/2007
The Arab League and the Quartet – America, Russia, the European Union and the United Nations - have become totally paralysed as Hamas and Fatah lay into each other in Gaza with a ferocity that makes the never ending procession of pious resolutions passed at the United Nations condemning Israeli "brutality and breaches of international humanitarian law " what they always have been – totally hypocritical and quite farcical.

Violence Rages In Palestinian Refugee Camps
Naresh Raghubeer and David Harris - 5/26/2007
As the Lebanese government attempts to bring Palestinian terrorist and their foreign allies based in UN refugee camps under control, serious questions must be asked about the United Nations Relief Works Agency (UNRWA) and its role in supporting and sustaining these armed gangs and their expensive infrastructures. For its part, the Canadian Government must investigate the way its own money and support for UNRWA have been misused to fuel extremism in the region.

Palestinian Refugees Must Be Spread And Re-Settled In All Arab States
Dr. Joseph Hitti - 5/25/2007
With the fighting in Lebanon raging between government forces and Palestinians, it is high time for the problem of Palestinian refugees is finally resolved. The only solution that makes sense is to re-settle them in the 21 Arab states.

The Shortest Path to an Independent Palestine
Charles Jalkh - 3/20/2007
Back in the 20th century, one man, inspired hundreds of millions to march proudly, unarmed, peacefully, and stoically, into hails of police batons and sometimes bullets, to demand freedom. The Indian nation rose en masse, in peaceful civil disobedience, forcing the end of the British occupation. Mahatma Gandhi shamed the brutal "civilized" world into withdrawal. He did not incite a revolution nor carried arms, yet planted a seed for humanity and showed by example, that freedom can be achieved through peaceful means.

Hamas Will Not Give Up Violence After Winning Elections
Jeremy Reynalds, Ph.D. - 1/31/2006
After winning victory in the Palestinian election, Hamas web sites and supporters still call for the extinction of Israel. "It is jihad to victory or martyrdom." While many pundits in the Western media are predicting that Hamas will abandon violence for diplomacy following its surprise victory in the Palestinian election, Internet "chatter" predicts a very different story.

Hamas Supporter on Victory: "If Vermin Israel Doesn't Like It, Too Bad"
Jeremy Reynalds, Ph.D. - 1/30/2006
The Israeli cabinet met Thursday morning at the Yad Vashem Holocaust Museum for a special session in honor of the U.N.-instigated international Holocaust Memorial Day, due to be observed on Friday in capitals across the world.

Interview with Fathi Abou al-Aardat, Senior Fatah Leader and Secretary of the Palestine Committee and Union in Lebanon
Manuela Paraipan - 9/12/2005
Fathi Abou al-Aardat is Senior Leader of Palestinian Fatah and Secretary of the Palestine Committee and Union in Lebanon. Fatah is the largest and most important political body within the PLO. There are 350,000 Palestinian refugees and descendants of those who left Israel in 1948. At least 164,000 still reside in the 10 largest Palestinian refugee camps. During her last trip to Lebanon, Manuela Paraipan, reporter for the Global Politician and the World Security Network, interviewed Mr. al-Aardat.

Palestinian Elections May Turn Out Nasty
Angelique van Engelen - 5/5/2005
The Palestinian Fatah Movement is doing whatever it can to brush up its image in the run up to this Summer's parliamentary elections, including the appointment of young blood into the ranks. The outcome of the elections is going to be of crucial importance for the chances of peace with Israel as well as the country's division of power. What would be the implications for a Palestine under more Islamicised rule, should Hamas achieve a much feared majority? And will the electoral map show that Islamists are on the rise mainly as a result of corruption and poverty?

Terrorists Need Time, Not God To Become Politicians
Angelique van Engelen - 4/28/2005
Today, in many countries' political realities, tribalist and nationalist or globalist forces clash fiercely, undermining chances of peace and democracy. This is particularly topical in the Middle East, where efforts by established leaderships to discourage armed conflict have reached a new phase, in which both Hezbollah and Hamas, organizations labeled 'terrorist' by the US, are nudged to start thinking about participation in mainstream politics.



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