With a September deadline looming, Israel’s prime minister turned to the Arabic media Thursday for the first time since taking office two years ago in an attempt to lure the Palestinians back to peace talks, saying “everything is on the table.” Benjamin Netanyahu’s interview with the Al-Arabiya satellite channel reflects Israeli concerns over Palestinian plans to seek U.N. recognition of their independence this fall. But it also highlights Netanyahu’s new strategy of engaging directly with the Arab public.
The Israel Navy commandeered and intercepted the Gaza-bound French ship Dignity – Al-Karama after negotiations to persuade 15 pro-Palestinian activists aboard to divert their course away from the Strip’s closed naval blockade failed. Navy soldiers did not encounter any resistance during the interception which resulted after the ship’s captain refused to cooperate with the IDF’s demand to divert its course to the Ashdod Port, the IDF Spokesperson said in a statement.
Thousands of left-wing activists marched in Jerusalem on Friday afternoon in the largest demonstration of support for an independent Palestinian state in the nation’s capital in over a year. Under the banner of “Independence for Palestine,” the march, which was organized by the Sheikh Jarrah Solidarity Movement, drew 4,500 participants from across the country. The march started from Jaffa Gate and ended in the weekly protest in Sheikh Jarrah, a direct inversion of the right-wing Flag March on Jerusalem Day, when tensions rose in east Jerusalem between right-wing marchers and Arab residents. March organizers said the route was also chosen because it was the border of east and west Jerusalem.
Iran said on Saturday it test-fired two long-range missiles into the Indian Ocean earlier this year, the first time it has fired missiles into that sea, according to state television. “In the month of Bahman (Jan 21-Feb 19) two missiles with a range of 1,900 km (1,180 miles) were fired from Semnan province(in northern Iran) into the mouth of the Indian Ocean,” Amir Ali Hajizadeh, head of the Revolutionary Guards’ aerospace division, told a news conference some of which was shown on television.
Squads of Israeli police were deployed at Tel Aviv airport on Wednesday, anticipating the arrival of hundreds of pro-Palestinian activists, a police spokesman said. “There are a hundred police from different units who are on standby and will make sure there won’t be any incidents at the airport,” Micky Rosenfeld told AFP. They’re on standby to deal with the possibility of activists and extremists arriving from overseas.” Pro-Palestinian activists from the “Welcome to Palestine” campaign have said they plan to arrive in their hundreds at Ben Gurion airport on Friday to protest against Israeli restrictions on the Palestinians’ freedom of movement, and that of their international supporters.
And God said unto him, Thy name [is] Jacob: thy name shall not be called any more Jacob, but Israel shall be thy name: and he called his name Israel. And God said unto him, I [am] God Almighty: be fruitful and multiply; a nation and a company of nations shall be of thee, and kings shall come out of thy loins; And the land which I gave Abraham and Isaac, to thee I will give it, and to thy seed after thee will I give the land.
Israel is on a list compiled by US immigration authorities of countries that might harbor terrorists, it was reported this week. The Department of Homeland Security list of 36 nations does not fault government policies and instead recognizes the likelihood that a suspect traveler from that country might have terrorist ties.
Since the middle of April we have had the worst tornadoes, the worst hurricanes, unbelievable droughts in Texas, unending wildfires in Texas and Arizona, Phoenix will be 114 degrees today!…and the list goes on and on. All this weather has come on the heels of the deeds of an administration that seems dedicated to neutralizing Israel and promoting and creating a Palestinian state from Jewish land. Just last week Obama warned of an outbreak of new hostilities…with Israel! When Obama met with Netanyahu, his rage was barely contained and the photo of him looking at Bibi says it all.
Israeli leaders holed up in a new underground nuclear bunker on Wednesday as part of annual nationwide maneuvers to prepare for a possible missile war with Iran, Syria and their Lebanese and Palestinian guerrilla allies. Officials said it was the first time that the security cabinet, headed by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, had tested the bunker, dug deep in the western Jerusalem foothills over the past decade and dubbed the “Nation’s Tunnel” by local media.
President Barack Obama warned that new “tactical” disagreements loomed between Israel and Washington, but vowed to leverage his administration’s “creative powers” in the cause of peace. Obama, who has had a testy relationship with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, spoke at length on the stalled peace process at a fundraiser for his 2012 reelection campaign grouping Democratic friends of Israel.
Shortly after the photo-op meeting and working lunch with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the one that saw President Obama openly chastised by the Prime Minister for Obama’s earlier public comments regarding wanting to see Israel return to its 1968 borders, the president verbally went off on Richard Daley in the private study area that adjoins the Oval Office. President Obama’s verbal attack was clearly heard by numerous staff up and down the West Wing hallways.
Obama’s stance was proof that neither the U.S. nor the world recognizes Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, Rudeineh told the agency. “The world has made it clear that East Jerusalem has been occupied since 1967 and that it is the capital of the State of Palestine in the framework of the two-state solution.” The Palestinians want Jerusalem as the capital of a future independent state.
The Palestinian Authority Arabs are now preparing for ‘Naksa Day’, the anniversary of the liberation of Jerusalem by the IDF in the 1967 Six Day War. The so-called ‘Naksa Day’ takes place on June 7, according to the Gregorian calendar. A website calling itself ‘The Third Palestinian Intifada’ calls on Arabs to pledge an oath of allegiance to Jerusalem on Naksa Day by marching into the city.
For the first time in the history of Israeli restrictions on Jewish entry to the Temple Mount, the recitation of the Priestly Blessing was permitted there. It happened on Wednesday, Jerusalem Reunification Day, when hundreds of visitors – all of whom immersed in a mikveh (ritual bath) prior to coming and took other precautions required by Jewish Law – were allowed to enter the Temple Mount in groups of 30-40.
More than a month after saboteurs blew up an Egyptian pipeline supplying natural gas to Israel, the line is repaired but gas is not flowing and foreign shareholders of the company suspect politics to be the reason. They are threatening legal action against Egypt.
A senior Iranian cleric, who is known as President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s spiritual mentor, urged followers to continue suicide attacks against Israelis, including children. he Iranian Ayatollah did not see fit to forbid the killing of children, only noting that Israelis can be harmed unless they openly express their objection to their government’s position. He added that even in such cases, harming civilians is permissible if “they are used as human shield and fighting the aggressors depends on attacking those civilians.
The number of missiles Hamas has managed to stockpile in Gaza passed the 10,000 mark in early May – despite Israel’s partial blockade of the Gaza Strip. It is growing at the rate of some 30 new projectiles of many types smuggled in every two weeks. On April 9, the Palestinian fundamentalists shot 133 rockets at seven Israeli cities before Israel granted a ceasefire in lieu of an operation for smashing this arsenal.
The day commemorates the miraculous liberation of the Old City of Jerusalem on the 28th of Iyar, 5727 (June 7, 1967), just days after several Arab armies threatened to wipe the State of Israel off the map. Israel took the initiative with a surprise, defensive attack, wiping out the Egyptian Air Force in one day, and taking over Jerusalem, Gaza, Judea, Samaria, the Sinai and the Golan Heights shortly thereafter. Weeks of national trepidation and tension, including the preparing of thousands of body-bags in Jerusalem and elsewhere, suddenly gave way to celebration and thanksgiving.
We, members of the G-8, strongly support the aspirations of the Arab Spring. The statement said development banks could provide “over $20 billion” for Egypt and Tunisia — where the uprisings were successful — for 2011-2013 in support of “suitable reform efforts.”
Egypt’s decision Wednesday to end its blockade of Gaza by opening the only crossing to the Hamas-ruled Palestinian territory this weekend could ease the isolation of 1.4 million Palestinians there. It also puts the new Egyptian regime at odds with Israel, which insists on careful monitoring of people and goods entering Gaza for security reasons. The Rafah crossing will be open permanently starting Saturday, Egypt’s official Middle East News Agency announced. That would provide Gaza Palestinians their first open border to the world in four years, since Egypt and Israel slammed their crossings shut after the Islamic militant Hamas overran the Gaza Strip in 2007.
Israel is not what is wrong in the Middle East. Israel is the only thing that is right in the Middle East, Netanyahu said. Interrupted dozens of times by standing ovations, after minutes-long applause as he entered the chamber, Netanyahu also said that there are 300 million Arabs in the MIddle East, but the only ones who are free are Israeli citizens. Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu noted in his opening remarks that the “ground is still shifting” in the Middle East and that the uprisings in the Muslim countries represent people’s demands for liberty.
Palestinian refusal to accept Israel’s right to exist remains the primary impasse for Mideast peace, and not the recently revised dispute over territorial lines, the Republican US House majority leader said Sunday.
Reacting to Obama’s speech, Benjamin Netanyahu rejected a full withdrawal from the West Bank, saying the 1967 lines were “indefensible” and would leave major Jewish settlements outside Israel. Netanyahu rejects any pullout from east Jerusalem.