Pessimism ahead of Quartet visit

BY ATTILA SOMFALVI, YNET— Western diplomats said on Monday that nothing short of a political miracle was needed to see the stalemate plaguing the Israeli-Palestinian peace process dissipating. The statement was made ahead of the Middle East Quartet meetings scheduled for later this week. The Quartet’s proposal to renew negotiations came on the heels of…

Details

Palestinian prisoners warned against returning to terror

BY YAAKOV LAPIN, JPOST— Palestinian security prisoners freed last week as part of the exchange with Hamas to release Gilad Schalit were “personally informed of the consequences of returning to terrorism,” The Jerusalem Post has learned. Security officials read out statements to the prisoners in the Ktziot prison in the south and the Hasharon prison…

Details

Netanyahu Offers to Freeze Government Construction in West Bank

BY THE ISRAEL PROJECT— The Quartet on the Middle East will hold separate talks with Israelis and Palestinians this week as part of another push for peace. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has repeatedly said Israel is willing to enter into negotiations “anytime, anywhere,” while Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas has set preconditions on entering…

Details

Walter Pincus says defense aid to Israel should be slashed

BY AMOS HAREL— Veteran Washington Post columnist Walter Pincus has urged the U.S. administration to reevaluate the extent of the defense aid that the United States provides to Israel. Pincus, who has been reporting on intelligence, defense and foreign policy for the Washington Post for 45 years, says the change in U.S. policy that he…

Details

Schalit deal may boost Fatah-Hamas unity

BY JONATHAN SCHANZER, JPOST— Pundits are painting news of Gilad Schalit’s dramatic release as a blow to Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, who watched from the sidelines, and a win for the rival Hamas faction, which negotiated the release of more than 1,000 Palestinians in exchange for just one captured soldier. But rather than stoking…

Details

US Republican candidates rebuff aid cut to Israel

BY JTA— US Republican presidential candidates Michele Bachmann and Herman Cain pushed back against a proposal by Ron Paul to cut funding to Israel. Paul, a Texas congressman, during the GOP debate Tuesday in Las Vegas repeated his proposal to cut foreign aid, including the $3 billion Israel receives annually in defense assistance. “That foreign…

Details

Arab Users tweet: Israel cares about its citizens

BY ELAD BENARI, ARUTZ 7— The release of Gilad Shalit has attracted worldwide attention, including that of Arab users of the Internet, who have used the Twitter social network to share their thoughts on the exchange deal with the world. Israel’s Channel 10 News on Wednesday presented some of the tweets written by Arab users…

Details

Noam Shalit: Gilad underwent difficult things in captivity

BY JPOST— Noam Schalit on Thursday responded to a Popular Resistance Committees (PRC) claim that his son Gilad was treated well in captivity, saying, “he underwent some difficult things.” “It’s true that in the later stages his conditions improved,” he noted, but warned that Hamas statements should be taken with a grain of salt, speaking…

Details