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Scribblings: From Assad to Assad Categories: Middle East, Palestinians, Syria     Author: Tzvi Fleischer

British journalist and author Malise Ruthven has written an article for the New York Review of Books, later re-published in the Australian Financial Review (June 17), examining the history of Syria in the wake of the recent unrest, and especially the domination of the country by the minority Alawite

Editorial: The Perils of Unilateralism Categories: International Security, Israel, Palestinians     Author: Colin Rubenstein

This September, the Palestinian Authority (PA) intends to go to the United Nations to seek support for a unilateral declaration of a sovereign Palestinian state - a move that will intensify rather than end the conflict, setting the entire peace process back by years if not decades. Having shunned r

UN call will not end this crisis

UN call will not end this crisis Categories: Op-eds, Palestinians, United Nations     Author: Sharyn Mittelman

The Palestinian Authority is busily lobbying European nations to support a unilateral declaration of a Palestinian state by the United Nations this September. The reconciliation between Hamas and Fatah appears to be targeted towards the same end. As such, it is worth considering what the outcome of

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Palestinians will go to the UN no matter what

Palestinians will go to the UN no matter what Categories: Israel, Palestinians, Updates     Author: Daniel Meyerowitz-Katz

Palestinian UN envoy Riyad Mansour has just come out and stated that even if negotiations with Israel were to recommence, the Palestinians will go to the UN and ask for recognition of statehood. Haaretz reports: The Palestinians will seek membership as an independent state at the UN in Septemb

For Evans Sake!

For Evans Sake! Categories: Australasia, Media/ Academia, Updates     Author: Jamie Hyams

Former Australian Foreign Minister Gareth Evans appeared on Jon Faine’s “Conversation Hour” on 774 ABC Melbourne on June 16, giving his take on the Middle East and demonstrating we’re lucky he is no longer in the role.

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Egyptian PM reportedly backs down on election postponement Categories: Egypt, Updates     Author: Allon Lee

Egypt’s interim Prime Minister Essam Sharaf is now reportedly denying media reports, noted previously on Fresh AIR, that he supports postponing parliamentary elections scheduled for September until after a new constitution is drawn up, a process only scheduled to commence in September. &nbsp

What do the Palestinians want? Categories: Palestinians, Updates     Author: Or Avi-Guy

Even a quick look at various Palestinian officials' statements over the past few weeks can reveal an inconsistent and somewhat confusing picture of the Palestinian Authority's (PA) official policy regarding the alternatives of negotiations with Israel and their plans to try to get UN recognition of

Gaza flotilla blind to Hamas

Gaza flotilla blind to Hamas Categories: Australasia, Israel, Op-eds, Palestinians, Turkey     Author: Arsen Ostrovsky

NEXT week a flotilla carrying so-called activists from various countries under the guise of "humanitarian concern" will set sail for the Gaza Strip, determined to break what they call "the siege of Gaza". Four Australians, including former Greens MLC Sylvia Hale, will be aboard. This latest anti-Is

Calls for release of Israeli soldier after 5 years of captivity

Calls for release of Israeli soldier after 5 years of captivity Categories: International Jewry, Islamic Extremism, Israel, Palestinians, United States, Updates     Author: Daniel Meyerowitz-Katz

Tomorrow will mark 5 years since kidnapped Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit has been held illegally by Hamas in Gaza. As Isabel Kershner has reported in the New York Times, Hamas has again refused a request from the Red Cross to visit Shalit - so that they could merely ascertain what kind of conditions

Bold or spineless? Strong conviction or a lack of direction? Responses to Obama's speech

Bold or spineless? Strong conviction or a lack of direction? Responses to Obama's speech Categories: Afghanistan/ Pakistan, Media/ Academia, United States, Updates     Author: Daniel Meyerowitz-Katz

Just a few hours after President Obama's recent speech on Afghanistan, there was a wide array of responses, positing a number of theories as to the ramifications of the new US policy. In general, the focus was on Obama's decision to end the troop surge that he implemented only 18 months ago. Michae

Countering the Assad regime's use of rape as a weapon Categories: Syria, Updates     Author: Or Avi-Guy

As numbers of Syrian casualties and refugees increase, the heart breaking individual traumas are often obscured or forgotten - personal stories like those of women who have been raped by pro-regime forces, and therefore, face possible death due to the local tradition of honour killing. But in a hope

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Increased imports further undermine flotilla facade

Increased imports further undermine flotilla facade Categories: Israel, Palestinians, Updates     Author: Daniel Meyerowitz-Katz

Amid increased tensions surrounding the impending UN vote on Palestinian statehood and the new unity deal between Hamas and rival Fatah, Israel has been quietly easing its blockade on Gaza - which is in place in order to prevent Hamas militants from smuggling in weapons with which to attack Israel.

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