Donnerstag, 8. Januar 2009


Report „Al-Fakhora“ 01/07/09 – Vol. „Miki“ - unedited

1. Exceptional Strategic Advancement +++ „This time, Israeli military commanders are leading from the front, not trying to direct the infantry from television screens. This time, the military has clear plans, in stages, drawn up with a year’s preparation. This time, there is no illusion about winning a war only from the air.“ [1] Especially in the stages I and II of the current war, preparation [+of ethnic skills] and plans, and foremost the integration of the civillian question in combat tactics showed an unpredicted low percentage of civillian casualities. The systems law of the strategical inevitability of civillian casualities is not broken, but its influence was diminished. All structures of IAF and IDF show operational progress in implementing theoretical material. [2] IAF and IDF showed that you can combine successes on the ground with international „laws“.
2. One of the major failures of all stages, with a proportional rise [analytic failure – civillian casualities], is that structures of IAF and IDF were not able to solve the question of an unwilling and unable Hamas regarding the civillians evacuation. Even quite important texts about the Lebanon war [2] hide sometimes behind political themes: „Hide in civillian facilities“. [= Al-Fakhora-case in initial statements of the Army and the propaganda] The truth is that Hezbollah won civillian support in Lebanon not cause of „Multiplier Effects“ in the media, or high casualities under civillians. They won the support with an perfect evacuation, especially in Beirut, and later and still! with a system of assistance. Todays IAF-result [„Israeli aircraft dropped leaflets over the Rafah refugee camp, urging residents to flee because of planned Israeli strikes. The leaflet addressed Rafah residents of a strip of neighborhoods that run parallel to the Egypt border. .. The leaflet included the names of four neighborhoods expected to be hit by the IDF, and instructed locals to immediately leave their homes.“ [3]] of 5000 Rafah citizens beeing „evacuted“ to „temporary emergency centers“ of the UN is no number to disdain. A Hezbollah-style „evacuation“ would bring the possible number up to 20 000. Other combinations: Winter vs Summer, Food-Sanctions since November, destructing UNRWA-capabilities and not bolstering them in front of the war that is „on the table“ -a years's preparation-, besides other problems of combat units [length, drugs, ambition] had to lead into a situation of unnecessary civillian casualities.
3. Al-Fakhora list of violations [Basis: Geneva Convention – Swiss version 08.17.1982]
Hamas violated Art. 37.1 [c], partially Art. 44.3 and Art. 51.7
IDF violated Art. 48.1, Art. 50.3, Art. 51.4, Art. 51.5 and Art. 57.
[Inside – Outside-Question] IDF violated Art. 65 [Warning + Aprropriate time to hide]
Note: Public information and internal and external discussions showed no evidence that can weaken this list of violations. It strongly recommended to install an military-investigation. It is not recommended to follow the demand of UN [international – independent investigation], cause such investigations need years and are fragile -political influence-. It is strongly recommended to create another panel of experts that discuss the influence of the enemies capabilities and willingness to evacuate civillian population.
4. A leadership issue? [Alpher -1] A very popular way in Israel to deal with war-related cases [„mishaps“] is to blame a) the political and b) military leadership. One writer, two examples: „A sovereign government must be able to identify connection between reasons and causes, means and targets - unless it was officially decided to hand over the management of the country to talkback writers.“ +++ „Yet the minimum that we could ask of the official, sane Israel was an expression of deep regret over the death of innocents.“ [4+5] Instead of that, the first two days after the Al-Fakhora-incident show again the demand of a broad political initiative to reconstruct the system of political education in Israel. For years, including several wars and conflict scenarios the political class has „successful“ extracted democratic values. Texts like the Geneva Convention, no matter how hard it is to implement them in any military action, are ultimative achievements of democratic thinking. Nobody and not a single government can guarantee the perfect conversion. But they are a basis to take a rational [and democratic transparent] decision: This is blue and this is white. Reaction of Israelis all over the political spectrum again show a an emotional string of different colours, nobody can be found that takes the responsibility to say: This time its blue. One of the reason for it is the constant feeling that texts like the Geneva Convention are a burden and that any single violation will be multiplied via „foreign“ medias. Another reason is that the political agenda has implemented a special Israeli law that the „war against terror“ is to extract from democratic achievements, mostly based on „possible dangers in the future“ [law of „threat to the existence"]. One can understand a large part of this constant and find the reason in „historic events“ that work in the Israeli soul. But after the military showed a quantum jump in the rigth direction, one has to ask why the rest of Israel seems to take a step into ... the other direction. Emotion – Emotion and even more emotions. Several thousand Israeli citizens in uniform figth their way through Gaza. The rest of Israel figths with the own soul, or the soul of the neighbor. It is strongly recommended to install a panel of experts that analyze the system of political communication. And it is strongly recommended that the EU should demand reforms in that specific part in the future negotiations about a „quasi“-EU-membership-status scheduled for April 2009.

[2] Example:

Sonntag, 25. Mai 2008


Nun ist es amtlich: Michel Suleiman, aktiver Armeechef wechselt in den Posten des Präsidentens im Libanon. Das Ergebniss: 118F - 6A -3N. Vorberichte: President Michel Suleiman, the army chief elected Lebanon's head of state on Sunday, kept the military unified through three years of turmoil that pushed the country to the brink of a new civil war. [...] Speaker Nabih Berri on Friday invited Prime Minister Fouad Siniora and his government to take part in the scheduled Parliament session Sunday to elect head of Lebanese Armed Forces General Michel Suleiman as president after earlier reports said Berri was not willing to invite the government, which the opposition describes as illegitimate. [...] Lebanon's parliament elected army chief Michel Suleiman as head of state on Sunday, reviving paralyzed state institutions after an 18-month standoff between a U.S.-backed government and the Hezbollah-led opposition. Die Erwartung: Die Streitparteien zu einem konstruktiven Politstil führen, die Aussengrenzen sichern und Schritte in eine Entwaffnung einleiten. Die Aussichten: Nach der Hezbollah mit der zweitstärksten Kämpfermasse ausgestattet hat er gute Aussichten seine Amtszeit produktiv zu gestalten. Erst die nächsten Krisen werden zeigen ob er sich in Ihnen maßgeblich durchsetzen kann. Das Ausland wird seine helle Freude an ihm haben:
"We look strongly to brotherly ties between Lebanon and Syria in the context of mutual respect of the sovereignty and borders of each country and diplomatic ties which will bring good for both of them." ... "Our weapons should only be directed towards the enemy." [Ob er damit nun Anatolien meint?] Direkte Aufgaben. [...] Warme Worte: It was a setback for the United States, which had strongly backed the Lebanese government for three years and is concerned that Iran's influence is spreading in the Middle East. Nevertheless, the United States has welcomed the political agreement in Lebanon. "I am confident," President George W. Bush said in a statement, "that Lebanon has chosen a leader committed to protecting its sovereignty, extending the government's authority over all of Lebanon and upholding Lebanon's international obligations under UN Security Council resolutions."

In der Westbank wird die Investorenkonferenz mit dem Ergebniss von Zusagen in Höhe von 1.4 Milliarden bis 2.0 Milliarden für Projekte, die [It was also announced that the Palestinian government has formed a ministerial committee to enable Fayyad to work with a committee of private sector institutions. The first meeting of the joint committee resulted in an agenda which includes developing legislations and laws concerning the economic process, planning management and developing services and tackling Israeli impediments to strengthening the Palestinian economy.] entsprechend gerecht verwaltet werden. Ein Löwenanteil wurde schon besprochen, der zweitgrößte erscheint ein Internetdeal zu werden: Promoting the expansion of wireless internet connectivity in the West Bank is the goal underlying a 480,000 US dollar grant USTDA Director Larry Walther signed at the Palestinian Investment Conference in Bethlehem. USTDA awarded this grant to BCI Communications & Advanced Technologies Ltd. (BCI), which is headquartered in Ramallah, for technical assistance on the deployment of a WiMax system. The grant signing marks the first USTDA assistance in the Palestinian Territories since 1995. Als erstes sollten die Herren mal versuchen Ihre Webseite ... selbst sehen und staunen. Besser läufts mit Risikoversichern. [...] Palestinian officials close to peace talks said Sunday that Israel has offered a West Bank withdrawal map that leaves about 8.5 percent of the territory in Israeli hands, less than a previous plan but still more than the Palestinians are ready to accept. Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat and other PA officials, however, told The Jerusalem Post that the report is unsubstantiated. [Die Aufgabe des Jordantals ist wahrlich kaum vorstellbar.] Über das Wochenende finden einige Auseinandersetzungen statt. So schießt ein israelischer Wachman vor al-Ramlah einen 16-jährigen an, der in mit einem Auto erst ärgerte und dann überfahren wollte. Am Samstag wird in Nablus beschießen marodierende IDF-Milizionäre einen Straßenzug und zerstören ein Restaurant und verschiedene Autos. Die PA verhaftet insgesamt 18 Hamas-Mitglieder, bei einer Aktion der Israelis in Jenin wird ein Palästinenser verletzt und ein weiterer fest genommen. Die bisherigen Auswirkungen der blühenden Landschaften des Tony Blair, dessen Flugzeug um ein Haar von der israelischen Luftreinigungsstaffel entsorgt worden ist beschreibt dieser Bericht: The Report depicts a much degraded employment and labour situation. The plight of the Palestinian people has not improved in any fundamental way. Indeed, in a number of respects it has deteriorated alarmingly. With the near total closure of the Gaza Strip following the break up of the national unity government and the continuing impediments to the movement of persons and goods in the West Bank and in East Jerusalem, economic and political life is highly fragmented. One in three persons of working age is employed. Ein konkreter Bericht über das hier: The Israeli military removed 103 barriers, but imposed another 144 checkpoints, roadblocks and other obstacles, a net increase of 7%, seit September liegt noch nicht ausführlich vor.

Der Gazastreifen vermeldet weitere teils schwere Attacken, während ein möglicherweise letzter Versuch von Amos Gilad in Cairo einen Durchbruch der Waffenruhengespräche zu erzielen wohl fehlschlagen wird. Erste Umschichtungen: In unprecedented decision, army instructed to evacuate soldiers serving near Erez crossing due to volatile security situation in area, was zu schwerer Kritik von Rechts Aussen führt. Am Samstag regnet es Qassams im Dutzendpack, meist auf zivile Ziele, ohne Verletzte. Hamas likely possesses rockets capable of reaching areas beyond Ashkelon, perhaps as far as Ashdod and Kiryat Gat, Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) chief Yuval Diskin said Sunday at the weekly Cabinet meeting. Kleinere Gefechte im Gazastreifen selbst, durch Artilleriebeschuß werden in Khan Younis an die acht Personen verletzt, vier weitere durch einen Luftangriff. Sowohl aus Rafah als auch aus der kompletten Gegend zwischen Shuja'iyya, einem Vorort von Gaza City und dem Sufa Crossing werden anhaltende Gefechte berichtet, die allerdings ohne Opfer bleiben. Am Sonntag konzentrieren sich palästinensische Attacken auf Sufa und Nazal Oz [Mörsergranatenbeschuß] und eine Qassam wird auf Sderot abgefeuert. Derweil bittet eine palästinensische Delegation in Ägypten um Treibstoff, während Politchef Meshal in Teheran weilt und dort fröhlich verkündet das die Gaza-Besatzung die "prime human rigths violation" der Welt darstellen würde. Schade das er nicht gerade einen slum in Südafrika besucht und als Ausländer identifiziert wird. Nach etwa Aufregung um einen Kreislaufkollaps von Despot Ahmanidejad wegen israelischer Verhandlungen mit Syrien glätte bei dieser Gelegenheit jedoch Aussenminister Mottaki die Wogen: “We support the liberation of Golan Heights as well as other occupied lands and believe that Syria should retake its own land and not compromise on the rights of the Palestinian nation.“

Zum Abschluß jetzt ein Bericht über eine anstehende Parteigründung: Knesset Member Ephraim Sneh held a special press conference Sunday, announcing he was leaving the Labor Party and forming a new party, named "Strong Israel". The name, said a proud Sneh, "symbolizes both social and military resilience." [Erstaunlich lange gab es keine Kabinettsumbildung mehr.]

Freitag, 23. Mai 2008

IDF kills Two and Hamas talks fail

Eine delikate Situation für die Regierigen in Israel dämmert morgen früh, da man sich im Falle des Scheiterns von Verhandlungen über eine Waffenruhe mit dem Gazastreifen militärtechnisch sehr weit aus dem Fenster gelehnt hat. Total deplatziert erscheint unser Freund Bernard Kouchner, seines Zeichens französischer Aussenmister mit der bei einem Besuch in den Territorien vorgetragenen Einschätzung: "There is this good atmosphere ... in Lebanon, as well as with Syria and also in Gaza." Am Nachmittag wird die gute Athmosphäre im Gazastreifen mit etwas Blei angereichert: Hamas-Demo am Karni-Crossing, ein Toter 17 Verletzte. Die IDF bezichtigt die Hamas eine Schießerei und des Steinewerfens und möchte in Notwehr zurück geschossen haben. Andere israelische Quellen berichten genau Gegenteiliges: "opend fire when demonstrators approached the border fence, believing the movement to be terror related". Daneben wird ein Scheitern berichtet: A bid by Egypt to broker a cease-fire between Hamas and Israel has faltered after the radical Palestinian group failed to secure a pledge to lift an Israeli-imposed siege on Gaza, Palestinian officials said Thursday. ... "We haven't decided yet the hour when cease-fire begins.", soll wohl ein Witz sein. Olmert möchte jetzt entscheiden und wenn er jetzt wieder den Schwanz einzieht verleiert er den Rest seiner Glaubwürdigkeit. Laberschnalla Livni gibt zum Besten: "The attempted attack this morning at the Erez crossing point should demonstrate to the international community that, while it demands that Israel take care of the situation in Gaza and open the crossing points, Hamas, which controls Gaza, is not interested in improving the lives of the population and doesn't take even minimal responsibility," a Foreign Ministry statement quoted Livni as saying. "The international community must continue to delegitimize Hamas." Die Maan-Quelle will higegen noch keine entscheidung erkennen: Hamas leaders said they would make announcement soon about the outcome of Egyptian-brokered ceasefire talks, after they returned to the Gaza Strip from a round of talks in Cairo on Thursday. The Hamas officials plan to hold internal discussions about the talks before making any announcement. Hamas spokesperson Isma'il Radwan said, "Even after the delegation returns to Gaza, we can not assume that the case is closed, so let’s wait for their response." Dabei packt die JPost bereits den kriegswichtigen Ammon Rubinstein aus, der kriegsvorbereitend den Leuten erklärt warum man die Hamas am Besten ... "The shahid is not only the individual, but the regime itself". [Selbstmörderisches Regime.] Roni sofer macht hingegen ein drittes Faß auf: Senior Defense Ministry official Amos Gilad will be traveling to Cairo Sunday on the invitation of Egyptian Intelligence Chief Omar Suleiman. Gilad is expected to receive the answer of Hamas and the other Palestinian groups regarding lull efforts in the Gaza Strip and Israel's demand that Gilad Shalit's release be included in the agreement. [Irgendwann werden sie sich einig darüber das die Hamas Njet gesagt hat, weil sie ganz offensichtlich nichts bekommt was sie nicht schon hat.]

Morgen ist jedoch eine Kriegsentscheidung zwischen 10 Uhr und 12 Uhr nicht möglich: Police investigators are scheduled to arrive at Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's Jerusalem residence at 10 am Friday for yet another question session in connection with the bribery probe against the PM. Also entweder vor dem Frühstück, oder nach dem Mittagessen. Ich befürchte allerdings das das Grillen von Olmerts Kopf wieder so weit gehen wird das er sich hernach nicht mehr an das was er vor dem Grillen sagte erinnern kann: Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert did not propose a U.S. naval blockade of Iran during talks with U.S. House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi, the California Democrat's office said on Thursday. [Das Dementi ist vollkommener Blödsinn. Erstens ist der Bericht von Olmerts Leibschreiber Barak Ravid und zweitens ist die Idee uralt und wird ständig von irgendwem gefordert, so das die Bedeutung der Forderung faktisch bei Null liegt. Am Besten aber ist das nach dem man im Artikel mehrere als Orginalzitat gekennzeichneten Äußerungen lesen konnte ein Sprecher Olmerts zitiert wird: An Olmert spokesman has declined to comment on the Israeli leader's meeting with the U.S. congresswoman on Monday in Jerusalem, calling it confidential.] [Related: The United States will aggressively impose more sanctions on Iran as long as it refuses to give up sensitive nuclear work and uses the world's financial system for "terrorism," U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said on Thursday.] Nicht mehr verwunderlich ist das mittlerweile sogar Olmerts VIP-Service keinen Bock mehr hat: Several protestors interrupted Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's speech at a Jewish Agency ceremony near Jerusalem Thursday evening after storming the stage area. The demonstrators, who were carrying "The Nation is with the Golan" signs, were reportedly encouraged by the crowd on hand. Olmert was forced to stop his address, as the protestors reached within a few meters of him. Das er daziwschen auch noch Zeit hatte mit Bernard Kouchner Mist zu quatschen ist nicht mehr erstaunlich: The prime minister emphasized that Israel aspired to reach peace with the Palestinians in the coming year and added that both his talks with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas on this issue and the talks between the heads of the negotiating teams, Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni and PA negotiator Ahmad Qurei, were "serious and important." Entweder sind die Gespräche von Substanz dann bekommt er Frieden in drei Monaten, oder nicht dann vielleicht im nächsten Jahr. [Related: Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's close associate, attorney Uri Messer, was questioned Thursday at the National Fraud Investigative Unit office in connection to a corruption probe being carried out against the premier.] Langsam verkommt dieser blog zum "Israels oberwichtigste Persönlichkeit" macht sich immer wichtiger - blog. :-)

Wenn schon Frieden, dann aber bitte auch langfristig und mit Power: The Israeli Defense Ministry submitted an official request to the Pentagon two weeks ago asking to purchase a squadron of F-35 stealth-enabled Joint Strike Fighters (JSF). Each plane is estimated to cost between $70-80 million. In addition to the 25 planes, manufactured by Lockheed Martin, the Defense Ministry also asked for an option to purchase 50 more. Already in September, the IDF announced its intention to purchase up to 100 JSF fighter jets over the next decade. Two weeks ago it finally submitted an official Letter of Request (LOR) to the Pentagon. The announcement of the Israeli request came as a high-level Syrian military delegation was in Moscow for arms talks with the Russian Defense Ministry. Syria is interested in purchasing advanced MiG fighter jets, S300 anti-aircraft missile systems and advanced submarines. [Related: The career path from the Pentagon to the nation's biggest defense contractors is a crowded one lined with potential conflicts of interest, a government watchdog said. In a report released Wednesday, the Government Accountability Office found that seven of the nation's largest defense contractors employed a substantial number of former Pentagon officials in 2006 and at least some of those employees may have worked on programs they once helped oversee for the military. ... The GAO report found that 52 government contractors employed 2,435 former Pentagon officials, including former generals, admirals, senior executives, program managers and contracting officers. Nearly 65 percent of those employees worked for seven major defense companies: SAIC Inc., Northrop Grumman Corp., Booz Allen Hamilton Inc., L-3 Communiations Holdings Inc., Lockheed Martin Corp., General Dynamics Corp. and Raytheon Co. The GAO estimates that at least 422 of those employees could have worked on programs related to their former Pentagon agencies and at least nine may have worked on programs they once helped oversee or make decisions on while at the Pentagon.]

The UN Security Council on Thursday welcomed a Lebanese peace deal brokered by Qatar, an agreement that may have averted a new civil war in the Middle East. The council said it "welcomes and strongly supports the agreement reached in Doha ...which constitutes an essential step towards the resolution of the current crisis, the return to normal functioning of Lebanese democratic institutions, the complete restoration of Lebanon's unity and stability." [...] Shlomo Shamir schäumt schauderlich: West backs Lebanese government's capitulation to Hezbollah. [...] Zuheir Kseibati: On the dawn of May 21, 2008, the Lebanese entity and republic were saved from a seemingly inevitable death, as the images of the civil war and its fires were revived in every house and street, but this time draped in a dreadful sectarian cloak. [...] In a stinging defeat for the U.S.-backed government of Lebanon, the Islamist group Hezbollah bolstered its political power in this volatile land on Israel's border. [Man kanns auch übertreiben...]

Palestinian businesses have put over 100 projects on display at a first ever Palestine Investment Conference (PIC) in Bethlehem, hoping to raise nearly US$2 billion from the private sector. Over one thousand investors, mostly Palestinians and other Arabs, have come to the West Bank town of Bethlehem for the three-day conference which started on 21 May, to see what Palestinians have to offer, and decide whether it is worth investing in the local economy - and if that investment would be akin to charity or lead to financial gain. [...] Israeli forces shot dead a Bedouin man from Egypt on Wednesday as he was trying to cross the border, police sources said. At the Awja crossing point in central Sinai on Thursday the Israelis handed over to the Egyptian authorities the body of the man, named as Ayesh Suleiman Moussa, 32, they added. An Israeli military spokesman said: "Border police fired at a group of people trying to infiltrate into Israel, killing one of them and wounding another". There were no further details about the wounded person. [Reuters]

Donnerstag, 22. Mai 2008

IDF kills est. Three + Suicidator kills himself at Erez + One

Am Donnerstag Morgen kommt es am Grenzkontrollpunkt Erez zu einem schweren Zwischenfall, der möglicherweise das Ende möglicher Waffenruhen im Gazastreifen bedeuten könnte. In einer gemeinsam von Fatah und Islamic Jihad durchgeführten Selbstmordaktion hatte ein Jabalia-Resident einen mit annähernd 4500 Kilo Sprengstoff beladenen truck versucht auf die israelische Seite zu bringen, war jedoch wohl durch einen technischen defekt bereits auf der palästinensischen Seite zur Explosion gekommen. Kurz zuvor hatten begleitende Einheiten den crossing mit Granaten und Projektilen beschossen. Im Anschluß attackierten israelsiche Kampflugzeuge die mutmaßlichen Mittäterfahrzeuge. Opferberichte sind noch uneinheitlich: Auf israelischer Seite keine Verletzten, auf palästinensischer Seite der Attentäter und mutmaßlich einen unbeteiligten Zivilisten. Bei einer unabhängigen israelischen Eskalation wird in der Zone Juhor ad-Dik ein 62-jähriger Landwirt bei Kämpfen mit DFLP-Milizen erschossen. Eine zuvor aus Ägypten zurück kehrende Hamas-Delegation hatte vom Fehlschlag der Verhandlungen berichtet. Ob dies eine endgültige Antwort darstellt muß abgewartet werden. Am Morgen verstirbt zudem ein letzten Monat durch israelisches Feuer verletzter Jugendlicher. Die Hamas meldet einen erschossenen Gunman am Mittwoch ohne nähere confirmation. Auf israelischer Seite wird ein Soldat am Zikkim-Crossing zur eine Mörsergranate verletzt. Qassam-Angriffe werden nur vom Mittwoch Morgen gemeldet, so daß die israelische Seite derzeit noch die Ereignisse als nicht relevant für die Verhandlungen über die Waffenruhe hält, wohin gegen die Hamas-Seite sich sehr negativ äußert: Das israelische Angebot soll wohl jegliche Fragestellung der Grenzöffnung ausklammern.

In der Westbank wird bei Tulkarem ein israelischer Soldat von einem Autodieb über den Haufen gefahren, jedoch nur leicht verletzt. Aus Bethelehm wird ein gewisser Erfolg gemeldet: Saudi and Qatari companies signed up with Palestinian partners for $550 million in construction projects Wednesday, kicking off an investors conference meant to help revive the Palestinian economy and support Mideast peace efforts. Viel mehr an Berichten wird es kaum geben und die politischen Reden kann man sich schenken. Das Transparenzproblem ist offensichtlich. So erläutert der britische Minister Alexander die Absicht jährlich 2 Millionen US$ Unterstützung für den Aufbau kleinerer Geschäfte im Gazastreifen und der Westbank zu spenden und legt auch einen "Plan" vor, der eben nicht vorliegt sondern in den Schubladen der Fatah verschwindet. Das bei dem erwähnten Großprojekt die "palestinian partners" ein Drittel der Summe aus Hilfstöpfen finanziert bekommen und sie eigentlich [Al-Masar Leasing & Investment] Stohmänner kuwaitischer Investoren darstellen gehört nun mal eben zum arabischen Geschäft. Verhaftungswellen: 10 Palästinenser durch die IDf und 7 Hamasniks durch die PA. + Israeli defense officials generally respond dismissively to questions about the capabilities of the Palestinian Authority's preventive security forces, but a visit to the Jenin area with the Palestinian forces shows their attitude does not match reality, at least in this sector. Unterdessen meldet sich Najef Hawathmeh, DFLP-Chef zu Wort und behauptet das Aussenministerin Livni den Verhandlungsführern der PA bezüglich der Grenzziehung ein 12%+20%-Paket angeboten habe: 12% der Westbank incl. Ost-Jerusalem gehen in israelischen Besitz über und 20% werden als Sicherheitszone unter israelischer Militärkontrolle verblebein, vornehmlich das Jordantal.

Etwas durcheinander dieser Bericht: The IDF completed a large drill on Wednesday, which was conducted in order to drill its high-ranking officers on a number of scenarios in a number of different arenas. The drill, named 'Avney Esh' (Stones of Fire) is the second of its kind since the Second Lebanon War came to an end, and both the IDF's and the Winograd report's conclusions from the war were implemented in it. Das Manöver galt wohl eher dem Gazastreifen. Trotzdem sorgen die gestern geleakten Annäherungen zwischen Israel und Syrien für manövrellen Flurschaden: Israel, America’s staunchest ally in the Middle East, just became the latest example of a country that has decided it is better to deal with its foes than to ignore them. The announcement that Israel has entered into comprehensive peace talks with Syria is at odds with the course counseled by the Bush administration, which initially opposed such talks in private conversations with Israelis, according to Israeli and American officials. A week ago, President Bush delivered a speech to the Israeli Parliament likening attempts to “negotiate with the terrorists and radicals” to appeasement before World War II. [...] The United States voiced tepid support on Wednesday for indirect peace talks between Israel and Syria, a stance that analysts said reflected U.S. doubts about the chances of success. U.S. officials said they would welcome a peace agreement between the two countries, which have been technically at war since Israel declared independence 60 years ago. But they made clear their focus would be on the Israeli-Palestinian track. [...] Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni said Thursday Syria must distance itself from Tehran and cut ties to Iranian-backed groups like Hezbollah and Hamas if wants to conclude a peace treaty with Israel. [...] While the Syrians may have been looking ahead to a future with the Golan, on the Israeli side Golan residents and tour operators just seemed worried. [...] 65 percent of Israelis are against a full withdrawal from the Golan Heights, even if this would bring true peace with Syria, a poll published by the Geo-Cartographic Institute revealed Thursday. [...] Analysts, including former senior Israeli officials, believe there is little prospect of a peace between Israel and Syria without a shift in U.S. policy toward Damascus, possibly once President George W. Bush steps down in January. [...] Two of Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's aides, Chief of Staff Dr. Yoram Turbowicz and State Counselor Shalom Turjeman returned to Israel on Wednesday after two days of intensive talks in Istanbul, Turkey. Immediately upon arrival they rushed to inform the prime minister of the talks' results. [...] Knesset majority of 80 representatives??? [...] Jon Alterman: It would be nice to think that Israeli-Syrian negotiations represent a key strategic advance. While I wouldn’t rule out such an advance in the future, this all has the whiff of tactical advantage to me. [...] Ethan Bronner: Israel and Syria announced on Wednesday that they were engaged in negotiations for a comprehensive peace treaty through Turkish mediators, a sign that Israel is hoping to halt the growing influence of Iran, Syria's most important ally, which sponsors the anti-Israel groups Hezbollah and Hamas. [...] The depth of cooperation between Syria and Iran is at times presented to cabinet members, but most of the details do not appear in the media because of the limits imposed by the censor. A security source said that we are now dealing with a more sophisticated adversary from those we have faced in the past, as the chess game against us is taking place on three parallel fronts. [...] The official announcement published yesterday in three capitals - Jerusalem, Damascus and Ankara - about the opening of indirect peace talks between Syria and Israel, under the aegis of Turkey, is a source of great hope but also suspicion. This is not the first time hope has been ignited. At least three prime ministers - Yitzhak Rabin, Benjamin Netanyahu and Ehud Barak - drew close, to one extent or another, to an agreement with Syria, but were reluctant at the last minute to sign it. Rabin went so far as to place the conditions for peace as a deposit in the hands of the American administration, a deposit that will now serve as an important legacy for continuing the talks. [...] Israeli authorities have freed early a Syrian detainee serving a 7-year jail sentence on charges of establishing connections with the Hezbollah-led opposition movement and defying Israeli occupation, media reports said Thursday.

Besondere Betrachtung verdient Barak Ravid: The indirect talks between Israel and Syria, made public Wednesday, had their beginning in Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's trip to Turkey in February 2007. Forty-five minutes were allocated for Olmert's meeting in Ankara with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan; it lasted for two and a half hours. Olmert asked Erdogan to mediate between Israel and Syria, potentially paving the way for renewed peace negotiations. An enthusiastic Erdogan took up the challenge at once. Diese Darstellung ist wohl etwas sehr pro-Olmert geschönt. Die Aussage basiert auf: Der frühere israelische Botschafter in Ankara und Staatssekretär im Außenministerium, Alon Liel, sagte unterdessen der türkischen Zeitung „Zaman“: ... Im Februar 2007 habe dann Olmert in Ankara Erdogan um die Wiederaufnahme der Vermittlung gebeten. Von da an habe der außenpolitische Berater Erdogans, Davutoglu, Botschaften der einen Seite an die andere weitergeleitet. Liel sagte der Zeitung Zaman ferner, bei der Vermittlung sei auch die Lieferung von Wasser aus der Türkei an Syrien ein Thema. Zuvor kursierte dieses Vertragspapier als Ergebniss von ständigen Konsultationen. The meetings were carried out with the knowledge of senior officials in the government of former prime minister Ariel Sharon. Wer der "Europäische Mediator" war wurde nie veröffentlicht. Olmert setzt sich hier eher ins gemachte Nest und das er nun den "Initiator" spielen darf und nicht mehr Assad soll ihn wohl am politischen Leben halten. Dabei belegen seine "eigenen" Ideen eher das er kurz vor dem geistigen Zusammenbruch steht: Prime Minister Ehud Olmert has proposed in discussions with the speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi, that a naval blockade be imposed on Iran as one of several ways to pressure Iran into stopping its uranium enrichment program. + Iran's disputed nuclear program has sent a wave of interest in atomic energy across the Middle East, a think tank said Tuesday, warning that it risked setting the scene for a regional nuclear arms race. At least 13 Middle Eastern countries either announced new plans to explore atomic energy or revived pre-existing nuclear programs between February 2006 and January 2007, the London-based International Institute for Strategic Studies, or IISS, said in a report. [...] The standard assumption is that a military attack by the United States or Israel to prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons would be disastrous for the attackers, and would threaten the stability of the entire Middle East. Various experts outline doomsday scenarios for such an occurrence, and warn especially of Iran's harsh reaction. Fearing the reaction of the ayatollahs has a paralyzing effect. Even before the first shot has been fired, Iran can credit itself with a success. It created an image of an omnipotent country that will not hesitate to use its power to respond and avenge a military operation against it. This is an impressive psychological achievement. But a new paper, to be published this month in the U.S. by two well-known experts on the subject, sketches a different and more complex picture. The paper is "The Last Resort," written by Patrick Clawson and Michael Eisenstadt of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy. The main point, notes Dr. Clawson in an interview with Haaretz, is that the success or failure of a military attack depends on many variables, and not just the degree of damage the attack would cause. [Da das Buch noch nicht im Internet zur Verfügung steht kann man es auch nicht lesen.]

The police have documents pointing to the possible collusion of Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's bureau chief, Shula Zaken, in the bribery scandal, which involves hundreds of thousands of dollars. Haaretz has had access for some time to these key documents, which sparked the most recent investigation against Olmert, but they were under a gag order until Wednesday night. [Derzeit tendiert die Möglichkeit einer direkten Anklage gegen Olmert gegen Null.]

Mittwoch, 21. Mai 2008

Queen Rania has sent me...

Es gibt etwa 70 000 Photos von ihr. Sie hat diesem blog das Beste zur Verfügung gestellt.

Israel + Syria want to have peace, too

Nun, ich bin ja schon eine Weile dabei, aber so etwas ist mir auch noch nicht untergekommen: Eine [partielle] Einigung rivalisierender libanesischer Kräfte, angehende israelisch-syrische Friedensverhandlungen, eine mögliche Waffenruhe zwischen Gaza und Negev? Diese Tendenzen sind in erster Linie einer natürlichen Bewegung geschuldet, der Gegenbewegung gegen die iransiche Einflußnahme. Die Historie lehrt das LICs [low intensive conflicts] gerne abwartend bis positiv auf größere Konflikte reagieren. Man nehme den Kurdenkonflikt als Beispiel, man nehme das disengagement als Beispiel, man nehme die Intifada II als Beispiel. Die amerikanische Landnahme im Irak sorgte nicht für ein Zusammenbrechen der Raumordnung, sondern für ein überbordendes Machtpotential dessen Auswirkung zwar sektiererische Anwandlungen aller Orten verstärkte, aber die betroffenen Länder in klassische Politikfelder zurück fallen ließ. Interne Querelen und eine allgemeine Mißgunst führen letztlich dazu mit dem Feind lieber zu verhandeln als mit dem "Freund" Krieg zu führen. Verdeutlichen wir es uns mit dem Fattah-Hamas-Konflikt. Nach dem versuchten Putsch durch Dahlan in der Hamas-Zone Gazstreifen wurde latent versucht den Eindruck zu erzeugen das die Fattah die Hamas wieder verjagen könne. Demonstrationen und sektiererische Ausbrüche wurden als Startsignal gesehen. Versandet ist dies nicht wegen der irrealen Auffassung dieser Möglichkeit in westlichen Kreisen [Geld gegen iranische Unterstützung], oder gar einer Allianz mit den Israelis, sondern ausschließlich aus dem Impuls heraus im Deckmantel des kommenden Krieges gegen den Iran lieber die Regionalmacht zu behalten als sie langfristig zu verlieren. Ein Kunststück von Kriegen bei denen hinter jedem neuen Dorf eine neue Macht das sagen hat und die Staaten eher substanzlos agieren, weil sie letzlich jeden Krieg verlieren. Schwedenkönige, oder marodierende Franzosen im 30-jährigen Krieg können ein Lied davon singen. Das sich islamistische Verbände wie Hamas und Hezbollah ihrer Schlüsselfigur in dieser Geschichte bewußt sind darf bezweifelt werden. Trotzdem gehören sie als Faktoren eingebettet in jegliche Verhandlung und jedes strategisches Denken. Die Rückkehr zu der islamistischen Grundidee einer Überzeugung durch Lebenswandel und nicht durch Brutalität und Waffen kann man nicht von Figuren erwarten, die ihre Söhne reiehenweise in den bewaffneten Kampf schicken. Trotzdem soll dies der Schritt werden ihnen die Menschlichkeit zurück zu geben, die ihnen die amerikanische Lügenliga genommen hat. Diese Rückkehr zu einem Kriegsprinzip, das es egal ist ob einer nun evangelisch sei oder katholisch, alawitisch oder shiitisch, das die Hauptsache sei das er sich an das ausgemachte hält befällt den Nahen Osten eben sehr spät. Die Frage ob dies ein konvulsischer Ausbruch der vorhandenen Gewaltvision aller Beteiligter ist, oder ein Zufallsprodukt launischer Gegebenheiten mag dahin gestellt sein. Geschichte wird immer nach vorne geschrieben und wir werden es sehen.

Trotzdem kann das Fazit nur lauten: Ein großer Tag für den Nahen Osten. Es ist zu hoffen das es mehrere davon in naher Zukunft gibt.

Related: "Israel and Syria have begun indirect peace talks with the Syrians, under the auspices of Turkey," the statement read. "The two sides have declared their intention to conduct the negotiations in good faith and with openness."

Mabrook Lebanon

Finally a deal to end the crises reached in Qatar
Doha - The presidential election will take place either on Thursday or latest this Friday, depending on the arrival dates of the MPs currently in Qatar according to the deal reached in Qatar aimed at ending the political crisis in Lebanon, officials in Qatar said.

The agreement was reached at about 3:00 AM Doha, Qatar time after intensive negotiations that lasted for 5 days between supporters of the Lebanese government and the Hezbollah-led opposition

Lebanon has been without a president since November 23, 2007 when the pro-Syrian president Emile Lahoud stepped down at the end of his term

Lebanon has witnesses the worst political crises since the last civil war last week Lebanon came too close to start another civil war , following the so called "Hezbollah coup against the state which resulted in the killing of 81 and the wounding of 200. The Government's resolutions to outlaw Hezbollah's illegal telephone network and to fire Beirut airport's security chief triggered the Hezbollah violence. The government had to rescind both resolutions in order to end the violence after an Arab League committee visited Lebanon and intervened

The breakthrough came after Qatar proposed 2 sets of proposals ( on electing a new president, power-sharing in the new cabinet and the electoral law) and asked the parties to agree on one of the proposals for final settlement. When the parties could not agree on either proposals because of the electoral law , Qatar officials formed a Quartet committee (of 2 representative from each side ) to discuss and provide recommendation on the last sticking issue , which was the electoral law for the parliamentary elections that are expected to take place next year .

Around midnight it became clear that an agreement was near , since all parties voiced optimism and promised they will not leave before an agreement

MP Walid Jumblatt , a key leader of the March 14 alliance which backs the government said "The Lebanese people have the right to be angry at us if we return to Lebanon without agreement and we are doing every thing possible to reach an agreement "

Similarly opposition MP Ali Hassan Khalil sounded optimistic when he said that he expected a parliamentary vote to elect a president on Thursday or Friday.

Last year , the rival groups had agreed on electing army chief Gen Michel Suleiman to succeed the former President Emile Lahoud, but they could not agree on anything else and for this reason the presidential elections were delayed 20 times . The first election date was scheduled for Septem,ber 25, 2007

Lebanon has been in political crisis since late 2006 when the six ministers of Iranian and Syrian backed Hezbollah-led opposition resigned from the democratically elected cabinet. The opposition followed this move with a sit-in demanding more power and a veto over government decisions.

The deal: Here are some sketchy details that appeared in the Arabic Daily An Nahar about the deal agreed in Qatar. On Wednesday the details of the deal will be announce by the Arab committee in Doha, Qatar

A- To Form a national unity government based on 16 ministers of the majority, 11 of the opposition (one third with veto power) and 3 to be picked by the President.

B- Distribution of The parliamentary seats in Beirut electoral region will be distributed as follows :
10 in Mazraa electoral District
5 in Ashrafieh electoral District
4 in Bachoura electoral District

C- The final statement on the agreement will include a reference to the weapons of organizations that are not under the direct control of the army and this issue will be finalized by the new president in Beirut

And last but not least all the above is conditional to the election of Army Chief General Michel Suleiman as the president of the republic of Lebanon no later than this coming Friday May 23, 2008.

IDF kills Five

Als Antwort auf verschiedene Angriffe seitens palästinensischer Milizen auf israelische Grenzstädte zum Gazastreifen tötet die israelische Armee im Verlauf des Dienstag fünf Personen. Am Morgen hatte eine Einheit des Islamic Jihad die Stadt Sderot mit zwei [drei] Raketen unter Beschuß genommen. Nach unterschiedlichen Angaben soll ein zügiger Luftangriff die ausführende Einheit getroffen haben [IDF], wobei allerdings ein 13-Jähriger getötet und zwei weitere Zivilpersonen verletzt werden, so das die palästinensische Seite von einer Ansammlung von Zivilisten spricht. Auf ähnluiche Art und Weise wird kurz danach ein palästinensischer Landwirt von einer Tankgranate vor Beit Lahia getroffen und getötet. Sein Sohn wird durch einen Kopfschuß schwer verletzt. [IDF: Bewaffnete wurden unter Feuer genommen, Kollateralschaden.] Bei Juhor ad-Dik wird erneut ein Zivilist durch eine spätere IAF-Rakete verletzt. Am Nachmittag wird der Vorort Zaytoun durch israelische Artillerie beschossen: Zwei Tote, darunter ein Hamasnik und weitere fünf Verletzte. Israelische Aktionen werden auch aus Maghazi gemeldet. Gegen Mittag beschießen DFLP mit zwei Raketend den Kissufim-Militärkomplex und die PRC die Stadt Sderot. Etwas später beteiligen sich auch PFLP und Fatah, drei Raketen werden auf Ashkelon und Sderot abgeschossen. Es soll am Karni-Crossing und im "nördlichen" Gazasreifen zu weiteren Luftwaffeneinsätzen gekommen sein, die keine unmittelbaren Opfer forderten. Trotz dieser Ereignisse sind die Möglichkeiten für eine grundsätzliche Einigung über eine Feuerpause eher gestiegen: The cease-fire (tahdiyeh) being negotiated between Israel and the Palestinian groups in the Gaza Strip is expected to go into effect in a number of days, following developments at the end of meetings held by Defense Minister Ehud Barak in Sharm el-Sheikh on Monday with the Egyptian leadership. The Egyptian Chief of Intelligence, General Omar Suleiman, who has been mediating between the parties, is scheduled to meet Tueday with the heads of the Palestinian factions in the Strip. Israel is waiting to learn from Suleiman whether the Palestinian groups, headed by Hamas, will agree to an unofficial deal on a cessation of terrorist activities in the strip, in return for an end to IDF attacks. + A senior Egyptian official said on Tuesday night that Israel had accepted in principle a proposal for a truce in the Gaza Strip, according to the official MENA news agency. "Israeli leaders [have informed us] of their support for and understanding of the Egyptian proposals for a truce," the news agency quoted the unidentified official as saying. It added that Egyptian intelligence chief Omar Suleiman had relayed the news to a Hamas delegation from Gaza earlier in the day. [...] Seven municipal leaders from Israel's south sent a harsh letter to Prime Minister Ehud Olmert Tuesday, urging him to act against ongoing rocket attacks sustained by southern communities. ... Mittlerweile wird auch gegen den Bürgermeister von Sderot wegen sexual harrassment ermittelt... AP-Bericht: Despite violence, Israeli officials say Gaza cease-fire is close. Und latest: Israel is preparing for the possibility that efforts to secure a lull agreement vis-à-vis Hamas will fail, prompting the IDF to embark on a wide-scale military operation against Gaza terrorists. Senior officials in Jerusalem said Tuesday night that following the planned meeting in Cairo between Egyptian Intelligence Chief Omar Suleiman and Hamas representatives, as well as members of other Gaza terror groups, the National Security Cabinet is expected to decide whether Israel will be heading to a ceasefire or embarking on a military operation.

Ein anderer und hoffentlich etwas realistischerer Durchbruch: Rival Lebanese leaders were close to agreeing a deal on Wednesday to end 18 months of political conflict that has pushed their country to the brink of a new civil war. A senior Lebanese opposition official at the crisis talks in Doha said a deal resolving disputes over a parliamentary election law and how to divide seats in a new cabinet would be announced imminently. "We are very close to the announcement of a deal," Ali Hassan Khalil, an MP and a senior aide to Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri, told Reuters on the sidelines of the Arab-mediated talks in Doha. Zuvor: Talks between rival Lebanese political leaders in Qatar made progress on the composition of a national unity government on Tuesday, but the shape of a new electoral law remained a key stumbling block. After agreeing to adopt the qada (or smaller district) as the basis for constituencies, the parties remained at odds over how to divide Beirut.

The Palestinian Authority (PA) has detained dozens of people in the West Bank city of Bethlehem as a part of a security clampdown in advance of the Palestine Investment Conference, which opens on Wednesday, various Palestinian sources said. Two sources in the Palestinian security forces, who spoke on condition of anonymity, confirmed that approximately 30 people had been detained and are being held in the Muqata'a, the government headquarters in Bethlehem. [...] U.S. officials said on Tuesday they aim to address economic roadblocks in the Palestinian territories -- including actual Israeli roadblocks and security risks -- at an investment conference in Bethlehem this week. The Palestine Investment Conference will include announcements of hundreds of millions of dollars in public-private business grants, loan guarantees, venture capital funds and affordable mortgages to spur the Palestinian economy, officials from the U.S. delegation told a news briefing. "The conference is intended to spur investor interest in the Palestinaian Territorites by showcasing business opportunities and projects ready to be launched," said Deputy U.S. Treasury Secretary Robert Kimmitt, who is heading the U.S. delegation. [...] Mazen Sinokrot wants foreigners invited by the Palestinian government to an investor conference this week to get the right idea -- so he'll be publicly taking delivery of $12 million in business funding. When the conference starts in Bethlehem on Wednesday, his family conglomerate will sign a deal with a local investment group to fund a turkey processing unit. The deal was in the works anyway, but Sinokrot wants to drive home the message in public that there are Palestinian businesses worth investing in. "There is an opportunity now to do business in Palestine," the chairman of Sinokrot Global Group said, adding that his own new poultry venture could create 600 jobs. [Es dürfte wenig überraschen das der Mann Fatah-Minister für Wirtschaft gewesen ist. Im Übrigen verantwortlich in der disengagement-Zeit.] Investors began to trickle into the West Bank city of Bethlehem on Tuesday as organizers put the finishing touches on arrangements for the Palestine Investment Conference. [...] Israelisches Störfeuer hält sich weitgehend zurück. Nach dem die Identität des gestern am Huwwara-Checkpoint erschossenen Pipebomträgers geklärt wurde wird er den "Battalions of Struggle and Return" zugerechnet, einer Al-Aqsa-Abspaltung die verantwortlich für mehrere Messerangriffe zeichnet, darunter dem mit Todesfolge für einen israelischen Wachmann am 24.01.08 an einem Checkpoint in Shuafat/Jerusalem.

The Supreme Court Tuesday rejected Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's bid to block a key witness from giving a deposition in a corruption probe against him. [...] Assemblyman Dov Hikind said on Monday that he saw then-Jerusalem mayor Ehud Olmert take an envelope full of cash following a Brooklyn fundraiser for the New Jerusalem Foundation in the 1990s.

The top uniformed US military officer told Congress Tuesday that Iran is directly jeopardizing peace in Iraq, prompting fresh calls from senators that the US pursue diplomatic talks with Teheran. Adm. Michael Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said that "irresponsible actions" by Iran's Revolutionary Guard "directly jeopardize" peace in Iraq. "Restraint in our response does not signal lack of resolve or capability to defend ourselves against threats," Mullen told the Senate Appropriations Defense Subcommittee. [...] The House of Representatives overwhelmingly approved legislation on Tuesday allowing the Justice Department to sue OPEC members for limiting oil supplies and working together to set crude prices, but the White House threatened to veto the measure. The bill would subject OPEC oil producers, including Saudi Arabia, Iran and Venezuela, to the same antitrust laws that U.S. companies must follow. [...] The White House on Tuesday flatly denied an Army Radio report that claimed US President George W. Bush intends to attack Iran before the end of his term. It said that while the military option had not been taken off the table, the administration preferred to resolve concerns about Iran's push for a nuclear weapon "through peaceful diplomatic means."

Manche fragen sich bei solchen Ergebnissen [Iceland is the world's most peaceful nation while Israel ranked 136th out of 140 nations, according to the "Global Peace Index," compiled by the Economist Intelligence Unit.] warum das so ist. Die Antowrt ist recht einfach: Orthodox Jews have burned hundreds of New Testaments in the latest act of violence against Christian missionaries in Israel. Uzi Aharon, the deputy mayor of the central Israeli town of Or Yehuda, says he got into a loudspeaker car last Thursday and urged people to turn over hundreds of New Testaments and missionary material recently distributed by missionaries. Verrückte bekommen immer Bonuspunkte.

Montag, 19. Mai 2008

IDF kills One

Vor Nablus am Huwwara-Checkpoint wird am Abend ein 20-jähriger, mit drei Rohrbomben bestückter Palästinenser von Soldaten erschossen. Eine Fraktionszugehörigkeit ist noch nicht bekannt. Nach angaben von Ryad al-Maliki sind die Vorbereitungen für die am Mittwoch in Bethlehem statt finden sollende Investorenkonferenz abgeschlossen. Als Nebenprogramm wird der eröffende Präsident aller Palästinenser Mahmoud Abbas den österreichischen Verteidigungsminister treffen. Die offizielle Webseite befindet sich hier. [Etwas älter schon: Der internationale Aachener Friedenspreis geht in diesem Jahr an die israelische Frauenorganisation MachsomWatch und den evangelischen Pfarrer der Weihnachtskirche in Bethlehem, Mitri Raheb. Die Preisträger engagierten sich auf vorbildliche Weise „von unten“ für den Frieden im Nahen Osten heißt es zur Begründung. ... Der Aachener Friedenspreis ist mit je 1.000 Euro dotiert und wird am 1. September verliehen. Zur Preisverleihung sind – wie in jedem Jahr – alle Bürgerinnen und Bürger herzlich eingeladen. Porträt: MachsomWatch +++ Porträt: Mitri Raheb.]

Über den defacto-truce zwischen Israel und Gaza streiten sich die Geister. Unbestätigten Angaben zu Folge soll es ab dem Nachmittag zu entweder 4 Qassam-Abschüssen, oder zwei Mörsergranatenangriffen, oder zu einem Schußwechsel in Rafah gekommen sein. Oder auch gar nichts. Defense Minister Ehud Barak on Monday said that there can be no truce or cooling off period between Israel and Hamas unless there is an end to rocket attacks on civilians. Barak spoke to reporters following his meeting with Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak in the Egyptian resort town of Sharm el-Sheikh, to whom he outlined Israel's concerns and conditions over any possible truce deal with Hamas. Wie ich gestern ausführte ist der Premier nur noch repräsentativ im Amt und schickt zeitgleich zu Baraks Besuch seinen Dobermann vor die Presse: Vice Premier Haim Ramon on Monday acknowledged that Israel was holding talks with Hamas, in violation of a government decision not to conduct talks with the Islamist Palestinian group until it complies with the demands of the Quartet. .. Ramon, speaking at a Kadima faction meeting, criticized Israel's negotiations with the militants group and voiced hope that the cabinet would soon make a strategic decision not to accept the Hamas presence along Israel's southern border. [Erstens hat Israel bereits eine Kabinettsentscheidung für diese strategische Entscheidung getätigt -enemy entity-, wobei Zweitens dort nicht drin steht das man nicht verhandeln darf. Drittens hat der Herr Premier höchstpersönlich nie ein Go für eine militärisch umfängliche Lösung der Hamasfrage erteilt und braucht jetzt hier und heute nicht rumgreinen.] Unterdessen keilt Ägypten gegen Bush zurück: Egyptian Foreign Minister Ahmed Aboul Gheit says that the presence of Israeli and U.S. tanks on Arab soil is leading to more instability in the region. Aboul Gheit's made his remarks at a panel Monday on regional stability during the World Economic Forum on the Middle East at the Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh. + Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's office announced Monday he will undergo a routine test as part of his treatment for prostate cancer. In a statement, Olmert's office said the two-hour magnetic imaging test would monitor the tumor and take place Monday evening. [Nachdem meine ursprüngliche Spekualtion das Olmert deswegen nach Winograd ausscheiden wird war ja für den Müll. Jetzt halte ich mich zurück.]

Israel will not release Palestinian prisoners in exchange for two soldiers kidnapped by Hezbollah
, it recently informed the Lebanese organization. And if Hezbollah continues to insist that Palestinians be included in the deal, Israel may break off the negotiations, a senior official familiar with the talks told Haaretz. [...] Qatari-led Arab mediators stepped up efforts to salvage talks aimed at ending Lebanon's crisis on Monday after negotiations between the U.S.-backed government and the Hezbollah-led opposition suffered a setback. Rival leaders appeared back at square one on the fourth day of intense bargaining in Doha but mediators managed to get the talks going and maintained hope that a deal could still be reached to pull Lebanon back from the brink of a civil strife. [...] Hopes for a breakthrough to solve Lebanon's 18-month-old political deadlock dimmed considerably on Monday with neither camp willing to make concessions at talks being held in Qatar's capital, Doha. An indication of how convoluted the talks were came late Monday evening, when Qatari Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani joined talks with the rival leaders for the second day in a row in a bid to help break the impasse - or at least to keep the talks going. [...] Editorial: Among Lebanon's diverse (and sometimes highly divided) communities, it is somewhat rare to find a political stance or position upon which large majorities can wholeheartedly agree. But the prevailing sentiment in Lebanon right now is one that is shared by opposition supporters and government loyalists alike: The leaders who are gathered in Doha for talks on the Lebanese crisis should not return until they have reached a settlement to all of the outstanding issues that have needlessly plagued this country - and even threatened to bring about its demise. [...] another editorial: Most of Lebanon's top political figures are on an excursion to a foreign country in hopes (one assumes) of improving the situation in their own. The dazzling Doha hotel serving as their venue happens to have the shape of a stylized pyramid, a convenient reminder that taking inspiration from outside one's homeland is not necessarily a bad thing. It should be recalled, too, that it was the ministrations of the Arab League and the Qatari government - not any demonstration of visionary leadership in Lebanon - that got our feuding political parties to start negotiating again. Nonetheless, it is the Lebanese who have to seal the deal, and they cannot so unless and until they put their own country's interests above those of all others.

Normalerweise bin ich kein Freund von Texten von Parteibuchschreibern, egal bei welcher Stiftung sie sich die Brötchen verdienen. Heute eine Ausnahme: Here is a fascinating personal account of recent events in Lebanon from Heiko Wimmen, a German journalist and political analyst who resided in Beirut for the better part of the past fourteen years. He would like to share it with readers of Syria Comment. Hier sein deutschsprachiger Text auf der Böll-Stiftungswebseite. "Kernursache der Krise im Libanon" Ein Externer. Basierend auf der syrischen Besatzung 1976 des Libanon gibt es zwei Modelle der "Kernursachen". Das die Böllstiftung gerne "imperialistische US-Einflüsse" ursächlich am Wirken sieht versteht sich. Eine historische Übersicht findet sich hier, zB auf den Seiten vor 290.


France said on Monday it had held talks with Hamas, in an apparent softening of its support for the US-led policy of isolating the Palestinian Islamist group that seized control of the Gaza Strip last year. French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner confirmed a report in the French daily Le Figaro quoting a retired ambassador who it said had met senior Hamas officials about a month ago. [Dans la plus grande discrétion, une première rencontre a eu lieu, il y a un mois environ, à Gaza, entre Yves Aubin de La Messuzière, diplomate français de haut rang en retraite depuis janvier, et les principaux responsables du Hamas, révèle Le Figaro. Ancien ambassadeur en Irak et patron de la direction Afrique du Nord, Moyen-Orient au Quai d'Orsay, La Messuzière s'est notamment entretenu avec Ismaël Haniyeh et Mahmoud Zahar, avant d'informer le Quai d'Orsay de ses discussions.] [...] Der Zeitpunkt ist sehr günstig: Senior Hamas leaders are traveling to Egypt on Monday to resume talks with Egyptian mediators in hopes of hammering out the terms of a ceasefire with Israel. The Hamas delegation in includes founder Mahmoud Zahhar, Jamal Abu Hashim, and Khalil Al-Hayyah, all of whom are based in the Gaza Strip. Exlied leaders Mousa Abu Marzouq, Muhammad Nasr and Imad Al-Alami will also join the meetings. [Maan, incl. Schreibfehler "exlied" - "exiled"] Zuerst wurde eine Verschiebung auf Ende der Woche angesetzt und wie hier bereits vermutet die Falschmeldung verbreitet Suleiman würde im Gazastreifen am Sonntag weilen. Nun verbleibt die Terminologie wie ursprünglich geplant, wobei ich kaum Erfolgschancen erkennen kann. Zwar wäre ein gegenseitiger Waffenstillstand technisch machbar [Israel plans to accept the Egyptian-mediated cease-fire proposal with Hamas in the Gaza Strip, but does not intend to officially declare a commitment to it. Instead, Israel will treat the deal struck indirectly with Hamas as a series of steps beginning with a lull in hostilities, followed by gradual relaxation of the financial blockade of Gaza. Ehud Barak, who will discuss the cease-fire with Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak in Sharm el-Sheikh Monday, is skeptical about the chances of achieving long-term quiet with Hamas, and his feelings are shared by Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni.], aber ohne Aufhebung der Blockade wenig von Nutzen. Andererseits kann eine wohlinszenierte extralegale Tötung eines Islmic-Jihad-Führers in der Westbank jederzeit die ruhigere Lage platzen lassen. Der aktuelle Waffenstillstand kann mit Beginn Samstag 00:00 terminiert werden, womit die zentralen player Hamas und Islamic Jihad gemeint sind. Für die gezeigte Disziplin auf täglicher Basis eine gewisse Menge an Treibstoff und Gas, allerdings nur ein Bruchteil des benötigten Stoffs. Andere Gruppen verüben kleinere Attacken auf den Sufa-Crossing und angebliche israelische Ziele im Gazastreifen in der Nähe des ehemaligen Flughafens. Zu notieren ist das nach den Bush-Infektion mit Kriegslüsternheit auch die Presse wieder bereinigt ist und peacenik-Artikel veröffentlichen darf: Say yes to a lull - Major op in Gaza would not solve rocket issue, put Shalit’s life in danger. Auffällig ist jedoch das das Wörtchen Iran häufiger erwähnt wird: The Shin Bet announced Monday that it arrested last month a Palestinian terrorist who had undergone training in Iran. ... State officials said that his arrest proves that Iran is directly involved in Palestinian terrorism. [Den lieben state officials sei an dieser Stelle gesagt das Geständnisse die unter Folter zu Stande gekommen sind in Rechtsstaaten keinerlei Bedeutung haben.] [...] Helena Cobban glänzt mit einem historischen Abriß. [...] Israeli worries about gunrunner tunnels from the Egyptian Sinai to the Hamas-run Gaza Strip are overblown as the greater smuggling threat is from the Mediterranean sea, a senior Israeli lawmaker said on Monday. ... But Grad and Katyusha-style rockets favoured by Hamas and other factions for hitting targets deep in Israel are too big to be dragged through the underground passages, the sources said. [1. Nein, nicht zu "groß". Zu viel Personal wird benötigt. In den letzten Verschüttungen wurden jeweils über ein halbes Dutzend Menschen verschüttet. 2. Die Kanister-Theorie ist aufgrund der Seeüberwachung eher schwer zu glauben.]

Labor Chairman and Defense Minister Ehud Barak said Sunday that he believes the Knesset elections will be moved up and held by the end of the year or the beginning of 2009. [Wirklich erstaunlich der Mann. Bereits die Zweite Verschiebung in kurzer Zeit. "There is no reason to rush and that we should keep cool." Die Umfragewerte sind im Keller und cool bleiben kann allerhöchstens Livni. Während der Skandal um Olmert der Kadima aufgrund personeller Alternativen kaum schadet, schadet Barak dem Ansehen der Avoda mächtig.] Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's lawyer, attorney Eli Zohar, said Monday that the decision to accept early testimony from American millionaire Morris Talansky is a blatant disruption of the balance between the right to fair trial and public interest. ... On the other side, State Prosecutor Moshe Lador stood before the court, in what had already been described as an unusual legal maneuver, and explained why the preliminary testimony was crucial. Talansky himself, the State said in response to the petition, is a suspect and his promise to return to Israel and testify cannot be counted on. "The investigation into the conduct of the two suspects in question (Olmert and Zaken) pertains to the years in which Olmert was industry, trade and labor minister, his two tenures as mayor of Jerusalem, and his tenure as the health minister prior to that. "His duties required him to travel extensively and meet with certain elements as a public persona," continued Lador. "The allegations being investigated today go to his long involvement with Mr. Talansky, who is a known fundraiser and is affiliated with many Jewish organizations in the United States. "Official contacts aside, the State believes that during that time Olmert received cash payments from Talansky, both in Israel – via his bureau chief and in the US, via sporadic encounters between them… The State will offer evidence as to the nature of the payments, including specific amount, which were provided in cash, in the form of dollars-filled envelopes." [...] The state has thus far spent over NIS 6 billion on settlers evacuated from the Gaza Strip and northern West Bank in August 2005, according to the Disengagement Administration, known as Sela. This cost, which averages out to NIS 3 million per family, includes direct compensation payments, investment in infrastructure for the evacuees' new communities and social assistance aimed at helping to ease the trauma of the evacuation. In addition, the Knesset recently approved an increase in compensation payments that will total some NIS 640 million. [no comment]

Less than a week after a speech by US President George W. Bush spurred condemnation from Palestinian Authority officials - who accused the American leader of being one-sided in peace negotiations between Palestinians and Israelis - PA President Mahmoud Abbas has come to the conclusion that peace talks have failed, the London-based newspaper Al-Quds al-Arabi reported on Monday. Citing PA sources, the article said that prior to his departure from Sharm e-Sheikh Abbas was informed that the United States intended to backtrack on efforts to achieve progress in the peace process between Israel and the Palestinians. According to the paper, the report was given to Abbas from a European source, who claimed that the Americans were not interested in exerting pressure or confronting Israel, and that the US was "allowing Israel full freedom to take a stance which would serve its policies, its security, and its interests alone." ... die Abbas-Sprecherschaft kommt kaum mit dem dementieren nach: Palestinian Presidential spokesperson Nabil Abu Rdeineh denied reports on Monday that President Mahmoud Abbas plans to resign if a final agreement is not reached in negotiations with Israel within six months. Der obige Bericht wurde noch nicht dementiert. In der Westbank gehen die recht sinnlos vorgetragenen Unternehmungen weiter: Palestinian forces loyal to President Mahmoud Abbas have arrested two Islamic Jihad leaders, a Palestinian security official said on Monday, in a U.S.-backed law-and-order campaign in the occupied West Bank. Abdel Fatah Khuzaimiah, who was detained on Sunday, was the most senior militant taken into custody in the northern West Bank since hundreds of pro-Abbas security men deployed in the city of Jenin two weeks ago. [In the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip, Hamas security forces questioned Osama al-Fara, an Abbas loyalist and the governor of the southern town of Khan Younis, for four hours, sources in Abbas's Fatah movement said.] Über das Wochenende werden weit über 40 Personen von marodierenden IDF-Einheiten verhaftet, Häuser gelootet, Menschen an Checkpoints mißhandelt und in Hebron gar ein Checkpoint kompensationslos abgebaut. Und noch eine andere "Praktik" wird endlich mal öffentlich gemacht: Israeli authorities have been holding a major shipment of electronics ordered by Palestinian firms at the Israeli port of Ashdod for eight months, the Palestinian minister of Telecommunications Kamal Hassuna said on Sunday. Israel has been detaining at Ashdod Port electronic equipment which the Palestinian ministry of telecommunications has imported since 8 months, Palestinian Minister of Telecommunications Kamal Hassuna said on Sunday. Hassuna was speaking to the press in Cairo after he participated in the Telecom Africa conference and exhibition. He said that Israel deliberately held the equipment because it was imported directly while the Israelis wanted the imports go through Israeli companies. He explained that importing directly is less costly than using Israeli agents. He appealed to the international community and the concerned organizations to pressure on Israel to get the electronic equipment released. [Maan] Tja, wie bereits erwähnt sollen die internationalen Hilfsgelder doch auch den eigentlichen Herrschern des Landes die Taschen füllen.

This Palestinian Life is a film about the Palestinian nonviolent struggle in the face of Israel’s occupation and annexation of their land. Israel maintains control over a majority of Palestinian land. Surrounding the valleys of many Palestinian villages lie Israeli communities, called settlements, a majority of which according to international law are illegally built on Palestinian village land. The Israeli army protects Jewish settlers as they violently attack school children, prevent Palestinian shepherds from tending to their flocks of sheep, or raze ancient trees. This system threatens the very way of life of Israel’s Palestinian neighbors. [Trailer mit der hübschen Jeanette. Ich werde die Projektfortschritte genau beobachten. Natürlich nur aus politischen Gründen. :-)] Ähm. Ja: Phillip Rizk, im Übrigen auch Deutscher ist auf diesem blog kein Unbekannter und wurde schon verlinkt. Genau weiß ich es nicht, aber ich glaube er hat mit diesen Leuten zu tun. Seeehr interessant finde ich Jeaneee... nein, dieses Projekt von der mir bislang unbekannten Julie Norman. Photo-Bereich.

Sonntag, 18. Mai 2008

For Defacto Truce call 1-800-Livni-Moans

Dem amerikanischen Aussenministerium wurden unlängst verschiedene Audiobeweise zugespielt, deren sehr amüsanter Inhalt baldmöglichst auf regierungseigenen XXX-Webseiten veröffentlich wird: Israeli and Palestinian negotiators are privately discussing a peace agreement and the talks should intensify in the next several months, U.S. Secretary of State Condis Riceauflauf mit Quark said on Sunday. "I do know how seriously they are discussing all of the key issues," Rice told reporters aboard Air Force One as she returned from a Middle East trip with President George W. Bush. "I think you're going to see them intensifying those discussions over the next several months." [Was? Also für mich ist Sex generell das wichtigste issue. Politik? Kaum vorstellbar. Denn schließlich hat Condis Riceauflauf mit Quark verschiedene hohe Regierungsbeamte zum Sonnen nach Israel entsandt um die Friedensheuchelei zu monitoren. Es kann natürlich bei der amierkanischen Aussenministerin immer sein das sie lügt, klar.] [...] Selbstverständlich kann es auch sein das sie die Flughöhen nich verträgt. Ihr zu unterstellen, sie würde Amtshilfe für undemokratisch ablaufende Prozesse leisten [Fifteen members of the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee are demanding an urgent session on the discussion of core issues with the Palestinian Authority. They are demanding reports from Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni and chief negotiator Brigadier General (Res.) Udi Dekel on the matter, and are demanding that Olmert report on the exchange of messages, via Turkey, with Syrian President Bashar Assad.] wäre an dieser Stelle abenteuerlich. Denn schließlich wird ja Israel von demokratisch gesinnten Siegertypen regiert, die kein Wässerlein trüben können und nicht von einer Horde looser, gegen die verschiedene Korruptionsermittlungen laufen. Der top-Siegertyp: Continuous rocket barrages fired by Palestinians against Israeli towns in the western Negev cannot persist and a decision on how to act on the matter is near, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert warned on Sunday. "We are very close to a decision point regarding every issue in Gaza," Olmert told ministers at the start of the weekly cabinet meeting. "The present situation cannot continue." [Es regnet seit 7 Jahren Qassam-Raketen auf Israel. Und jetzt ist die Entscheidungszeit was man damit anfangen soll nahe. Wahrscheinlich kommt auch morgen der Messias, am Donnerstag schneit es in Jerusalem und am nächsten Sonntag fliegen Schweine aus Zypern ein um gegen die Ungleichbehandlung von Muslimen und Juden gegenüber den Christen zu demonstrieren. Übernnächste Woche werden dann sanfte Drogen legalisiert um die Befriedung des Nahen Ostens einigermaßen erträglich zu machen.] Die Qassam-Einheiten haben vorbehaltlich israelischer Gegenmaßnahmen das Feuer seit zwei Tagen eingestellt. Ein kleiner Gefallen an den ägyptischen Unterhändler: Egyptian intelligence chief Omar Suleiman said Sunday that if Israel agreed to the terms of a truce deal with Gaza militant groups, he could set a date for starting the cease-fire as early as Monday. Ein erneutes Zeichen das Olmert vollstädnig ausgehebelt in der israelischen Politik dasteht: Eine verklausulierte Kriegserklärung die das Diktat des Fürstens der Finsternis George Bush aus seiner Knesset-Rede umzusetzen vermeint am Tag vor einem enorm wichtigen Besuch zweier Minister -Aussen und Verteidigung- in Ägypten, die dort über einen Waffenfrieden verhandeln möchten ist neben der obigen Non-Transparenz in Sachen anderer Verhandlungen Beweis genug dafür das der Regierungschef mittlerweile nur noch repräsentativen Charakter an den Tag legt. Auffällig wird das Verhalten kaum mehr da lameduck Olmert sich darauf verlassen kann das lameduck Bush für mehr Aufsehen sorgt: US-Präsident George W. Bush hat auf der letzten Station seiner Nahostreise in Ägypten die arabischen Staats- und Regierungschefs brüskiert. Arabische Politiker sprachen nach Bushs Rede von einer "Unverschämtheit". Brüskiert werden auch die lieben Merkel und Cos in seinem Hintern die Länder, [wie Ägypten] ... auf einem Reform- und Veränderungskurs ... sehen. Derweil ist außerdem die künftige Aussenministerin der Amerikaner auf Antrittsbesuch: Washington must assert to the rest of the world that if they want to be friends with America, they need to do more to keep Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons, visiting US Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi said Sunday in an exclusive interview with The Jerusalem Post. [Und ich dachte immer man müsse nurn Burgerkingimperium aufbauen, genetisch veränderten Dreck essen, möglichst viele Waffen kaufen und das Aussenhandelsdefizit bezahlen. So kann man sich täuschen.] Ich befürchte allerdings das uns hier ein Generationenwechsel von verbraucht und harmlos zu Großmachtdenken der anderen Art bevorsteht. Pelosi said that to stop Iran's nuclear march, short of a military strike - something she did not rule out as a last resort - "you have to go all the way. And people have to know you are deadly serious that if you want to be our friend, if you want the benefit of our friendship, a central pillar of our foreign policy is to stop the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction." Kennen wir das? Jau: The proliferation of nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons ("weapons of mass destruction") and of the means of delivering such weapons, constitutes an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security, foreign policy, and economy of the United States, and [I] hereby declare a national emergency to deal with that threat. Kommt uns noch bekannter vor: Just prior to this hearing, he handed me copies of the documents he downloaded from a site in Finland describing the nature of the fission and fusion processes, the basic principles of fission weapon design, and assembly techniques for achieving supercriticality. Now while I am not a physicist, and cannot judge the level of sophistication of all of this data, I nevertheless cannot help but think that this information might be useful to someone, somewhere, who may want to build a bomb and who may not otherwise have access to it. [Richtig, der Frauenschützer Duncan Hunter, der Frauen aus Kampfzonen bannen wollte.] Es ist nach über 14 Jahren sehr interessant das die "Argumente" immer noch die gleichen sind und sich die Proliferationsspirale vor der möglichen Barak-Präsidentschaft durch Sarkozy und Bush im kompletten Nahen Osten ausgedehnt hat, während die "rouge states" immer noch die gleichen sind. Ein scheinbar sehr nützliches Thema.

Warum das Verhör verschoben wurde? Police will confront Prime Minister Ehud Olmert with new evidence in connection with the ongoing corruption investigation against him, Channel 2 reported on Friday. According to the report, police have requested that Olmert make himself available for questioning either Saturday night or Sunday, during which they will seek explanations from the prime minister before the scheduled May 25 court deposition of a key witness, U.S. fundraiser Morris Talansky. [...] Attorney General Menachem Mazuz on Sunday said he doubted a decision could be reached in the near future on the ongoing corruption probe against Prime Minister Ehud Olmert. "I am not certain that in the coming weeks we will make a legal decision, this is an unrealistic attitude," Mazuz told Channel Two's Ilana Dayan in an interview broadcast on Sunday. [...] The commander of the National Fraud Investigations Unit, Shlomi Ayalon, contacted Olmert's attorneys Thursday with a request for an interview as soon as possible. Sources involved in the investigation said Saturday they expected such a meeting would be held soon, possibly Sunday or Monday. But at the Prime Minister's Bureau, as well as among members of his legal counsel, there was surprise at the rush for another interview. ... Law enforcement sources said in recent days that their aim is to "lock" Olmert on one version of events before Talansky gives his public deposition. Investigators are concerned that if Olmert is not interviewed before Talansky's deposition, the PM's version of the affair may be "doctored" to avoid his being incriminated in the case. The investigators are planning to provide Olmert's lawyers with the material they have so far collected, so that his defense team will be able to cross-examine Talansky in court. [...] The prosecutors' assertion was included in the state's response to appeals filed last week by attorneys Eli Zohar, Ro'i Blecher and Nevot Tel-Tzur, who are representing Olmert, and Micha Fetman, who is representing the prime minister's former bureau chief, Shula Zaken. "With regard to the claim [by the appellants] regarding the large amount of evidence in the possession of the prosecution and the difficulty to prepare for the cross-examination of [Talansky] according to the timetable that has been set, it should be pointed out that the lower court's decision was conveyed to the parties on Friday afternoon (May 9)," the prosecutors wrote. "The state informed the counsel for the appellants that it was ready to hand over most of the evidence by Friday evening! Nevertheless, the defense, for its own reasons, did not do anything to receive the material up to this very moment." Es wäre wohl hilfreich wenn die Ermittler in der nächsten Woche Druck durch die "versehentliche" Veröffentlichung etwaiger Details aufbauen würden. [...] Since the latest investigation of Prime Minister Ehud Olmert was announced, Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni has greatly accelerated her political activity within Kadima. Party sources say that last week her camp stepped up their recruiting efforts, taking hundreds of party membership applications from party headquarters. Transportation Minister Shaul Mofaz also went into high gear last week; his party workers grabbed over 1,000 sign-up forms. [...] Public Security Minister Avi Dichter has said that he is considering running for the leadership of Kadima. ... On Friday, several Kadima MKs gathered at the home of MK Isaac Ben-Israel to discuss the ongoing investigation against Prime Minister Ehud Olmert. This is the first meeting of this kind since the news first broke regarding Olmert's probe, but the participants maintain that the nature of the meeting is merely a "theoretical discussion" and not an attempted putsch. [...] Jordan's King Abdullah II has told Israel to set the conditions necessary for peacemaking so that an agreement with the Palestinians can be reached this year. Abdullah's remarks came in a meeting Sunday with Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in the Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh, his royal palace said. Das Abdullah auf Livni setzt wird im unteren Bereich näher erläutert: About two weeks ago Prime Minister Ehud Olmert dined in Petra, Jordan with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and with King Abdullah. In the meeting, which was defined as "good and warm". Das Treffen war so gut und warm das sich Abbas mal wieder zu dramatischen Ausbrüchen gezwungen sieht: Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Sunday threatened to resign if he does not reach a peace settlement with Israel within six months, Israeli MK Yossi Beilin said. Die Rede von Bush vor der Knesset wird als ultimativen Beweis für die großangelegte Verarschung der Palästinenser ausgelegt: "In principle, the Bush speech at the Knesset angered us, and we were not happy with it. This is our position and we have a lot of remarks (about the speech) and I frankly, clearly and transparently asked him that the American position should be balanced," Abbas said. Der Versuch von Bush das Porzelan zu kitten schlug mehr als fehl: a state "would be an opportunity to end the suffering that takes place in the Palestinian territories." Da ist wohl ein Viertel des Libanon nach dieser "suffering"-Definiton dem Palästinenserstaat zuzuschlagen. Zuletzt noch die Gegenüberstellung zu oben: I told the President that I am absolutely committed to working with he and his negotiators, as well as the Israelis, to get a state defined. + privately discussing.

Related: Israel has agreed to release 71 Palestinian prisoners in return for kidnapped IDF soldier Gilad Schalit, a senior Hamas official said during an interview with the London-based pan-Arabic newspaper, Al-Hayat. [...] Sources in the Strip told Ynet on Sunday evening that as opposed to what had been the original outline of the truce negotiations between Hamas and the Egyptian mediators, the issue of kidnapped Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit is proving to be central to the talks. [...] Time to free Barghouti - Releasing popular Fatah leader may be only way to stop Hamas expansion [...] Head of Egyptian Intelligence General Omar Suleiman has warned Hamas that the failure to include kidnapped Israel Defense Forces soldier Gilad Shalit in a prisoner exchange with Israel will lead to a wide-spread IDF operation in the Gaza Strip, according to a report in the Lebanese daily Al-Akhbar.

Three Palestinian citizens were injured on Saturday in a fight between the Hamas-affiliated de facto government's police and the members of an Islamic group called Ahl Al-Kitab Wa As-Sunna (followers of the Qur'an and the Prophet's teachings) in the northern Gaza Strip. [...] Assailants detonated a bomb outside a popular cafe in Gaza City early Sunday morning, apparently part of a campaign by shadowy extremists to eliminate perceived symbols of Western influence. [...] The West Bank is open for business after years of bloody turmoil. That's the intended message of this week's international investors' conference where the Palestinians are seeking backing for nearly $2 billion in development projects, from fish farms to a new city of 25,000. The three-day gathering of hundreds of potential investors in the biblical town of Bethlehem is to signal a turning point for the Palestinian economy, battered by Israeli-Palestinian fighting and a stifling Israeli closure regime of hundreds of checkpoints and roadblocks.

Freitag, 16. Mai 2008


Die kindische Logik mancher Politiker ist schon erstaunlich: Israel has asked Egypt to incorporate a deal to free abducted soldier Gilad Shalit into Hamas truce talks being mediated by Cairo. The cease-fire talks will resume next week, Haaretz has learned. A Hamas official said that the group does not oppose including Shalit in the truce deal but would agree to such a move on its own terms, Israel Radio reported on Friday. Eigentlich wollte man ja den Gazastreifen nun zurückerobern. Nach Angaben von Ayma Taha, Hamas-Sprecher wird die Delegation erst in einer Woche nach Ägypten reisen. Über die Verlegung des Treffens, bei dem Äußerungen der Israelis an Ägyptens Geheimdienstchef Suleiman von Anfang dieser Woche disutiert werden sollen [man beachte die 12 Tage die dazwischen liegen] gibt es keine Angaben, was so viel bedeutet das Suleiman der Delegation vermittelt hat man bräuchte nicht erscheinen. Auffälliger Fehler des anzustrengenden Separat-Waffenstillstands für Mubarak ist die Tatsache das seine ursprüngliche Absicht eine Reconciliation zwischen Fatah und Hamas zu erwirken fehl geschlagen ist. Die im Link angegebene Variante "Egypt's intelligence chief, General Omar Suleiman, will meet a delegation of Palestinian factions in the Gaza Strip on Sunday" halte ich für eine Falschmeldung. Nach morgendlichen Angriffen aus dem Gazastreifen beschießen israelische Kampflugzeuge bewaffnete Hamas-Einheiten. Keine Opferberichte. Hernach bricht Ruhe aus. Vor der Rosary Sister School, einer katholischen Einrichtung in Gaza City wird ein Brandanschlag verübt. [...] The recent visit by Egyptian intelligence chief Gen Omar Sulaiman to Israel and the occupied Palestinian territories was supposed to help advance a ceasefire deal between the Palestinian militant groups in the Gaza Strip, headed by Hamas, and the Jewish state. However, the likelihood of this is low, many analysts here say, with the most probable best case scenario being a reduction in the intensity of the conflict, lessening the chances of civilians on both sides of the Gaza-Israeli border getting hurt or killed.

In der Westbank ist verhältnismäßig sehr ruhig, mit Ausnahme der üblichen freitäglichen Freundschaftstreffen: Dozens of settlers from the West Bank settlement of Yitzhar rioted in the village of Asira al-Kabaliya, Palestinian sources reported Friday. According to the report, several Palestinians were beaten up by settlers, who also caused extensive property damage in the village. However, according to the settlers, Palestinians from a nearby village provoked the latest clash after setting a wheat field owned by Yitzhar residents on fire. The settlers said that teams who arrived on the scene to put out the fire were stoned by Palestinians, and claimed that this was the third time in the past two weeks that villagers set fields on fire.

Die Erfolge des Bush-Besuchs und seiner Initiative zur Verbesserung der Verhandlungsgeschindigkeit von "core issues" im Austausch von Israelis und Palästinensern sind erheblich: Israel ruled out all debate on letting Palestinian refugees return in any peace deal, as U.S. President George W. Bush ended a visit on Friday that left Arabs dismayed by his outspoken support for Israel's "chosen people". As Bush flew out after three days of celebrations of Israel's 60th anniversary, an Israeli government spokesman said Palestinian insistence on the right of return for 4.5 million refugees and their descendants was "the ultimate deal breaker". Six months into negotiations sponsored by Bush in the hope of a deal before he leaves the White House, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's spokesman used some of the toughest Israeli language yet to insist that President Mahmoud Abbas abandon 60-year-old refugee claims if he wants to establish a Palestinian state. "This demand, which does not exist under international law, for right of return, is the ultimate deal breaker. You cannot have peace and this demand at the same time," Mark Regev said. [Kommentar von Naomi Bubis] Vor lauter Angst vor der Rückkehr der Flüchtlinge behandelt man die eigene muslimische Gemeinde wie folgt: Israel’s Arab minority has a lower life expectancy than that of Jewish citizens; the Arab community suffers from higher infant mortality rates; and in relative terms the number of elderly Arabs without teeth is very high. A new report says these are some of the signs of discrimination within the health care system. [Bush also told them that just as the US changed its treatment of minorities, he hoped that Israeli society could also change the way it treats its minorities.]

Shimon Peres hingegen hat wohl ein wenig zu viel hasbara geraucht: "Don't forget," continued Peres, "he is now going to Saudi Arabia, an Arab country. He knows exactly to whom his words are directed," adding, "he sent a strong and unequivocal message of peace.": President George W. Bush and King Abdullah formalized new cooperation on Friday between the kingdom and the United States on a range of topics, including the development of civilian nuclear energy in Saudi Arabia and US protection of Saudi oil fields. Immerhin entfällt bei den Saudis das Raketentesten, da die vorhandenen und bestellten Waffensysteme atomwaffentauglich sind.

Frieden breitet sich auch anderweitig aus: The United States and Israel agree on the need for "tangible action" to prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons, Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's spokesman said after a visit by U.S. President George W. Bush. "We are on the same page. We both see the threat ... And we both understand that tangible action is required to prevent the Iranians from moving forward on a nuclear weapon," Olmert spokesman Mark Regev said on Friday. Regev described diplomatic efforts so far to exert pressure on Iran as "positive", but added: "It is clearly not sufficient and it's clear that additional steps will have to be taken". Asked about the option of using military force, Regev said: "Leaders of many countries have talked about many options being on the table and, of course, Israel agrees with that." Bush ratcheted up his rhetoric toward Tehran in a speech to Israel's Knesset on Thursday, saying critics' calls for talks with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad were comparable to the "appeasement" of Adolf Hitler before World War Two. [...] Democrat Barack Obama accused President George W. Bush on Friday of "fear-mongering" for suggesting Democrats wanted to appease terrorists and vowed to meet leaders of hostile nations like Iran if elected. Obama, relishing a long-distance debate with Bush on foreign policy, said the president had contributed to Tehran's rise in the Middle East by launching the Iraq war, which he said had removed Baghdad as a counterweight to Iran. [...] McCain, meanwhile, is guilty of hypocrisy. I am a supporter of Hillary Clinton and believe that she was right to say, about McCain's statement on Hamas, "I don't think that anybody should take that seriously." Unfortunately, the Republicans know that some people will. That's why they say such things. But given his own position on Hamas, McCain is the last politician who should be attacking Obama. Two years ago, just after Hamas won the Palestinian parliamentary elections, I interviewed McCain for the British network Sky News's "World News Tonight" program. Here is the crucial part of our exchange: I asked: "Do you think that American diplomats should be operating the way they have in the past, working with the Palestinian government if Hamas is now in charge?" McCain answered: "They're the government; sooner or later we are going to have to deal with them, one way or another, and I understand why this administration and previous administrations had such antipathy towards Hamas because of their dedication to violence and the things that they not only espouse but practice, so . . . but it's a new reality in the Middle East. I think the lesson is people want security and a decent life and decent future, that they want democracy. Fatah was not giving them that."

David Ignatius, "The squeeze on the Middle East's moderates" [...] Qatar's emir formally opened talks on Friday between rival Lebanese leaders which aim to resolve a protracted political conflict that has pushed their country to the brink of a new civil war. [...] Was wurde eigentlich aus der Jemenitischen Initiative Hamas-Fatah? [...] After 48 hours of talks, the delegation of nine Arab foreign ministers and Arab League Secretary General Amr Moussa on Thursday revealed a six-point plan to end the sectarian strife that left almost 70 dead and 200 injured across Lebanon in one week. [...] Ghassan Charbel, "Questions for the opposition"