Freitag, 23. November 2007

Syrian Facebook Dissidents

Über die Formen und Auswüchse sozialer Gemeinschaften darf man geteilter Meinung sein. Nicht aber über das Recht seine Zeit so zu vergeuden wie man es persönlich für richtig erachtet: Syria's netizens have been given another slap on the face with the banning of social networking site Facebook. With Blogger already blocked, the country's bloggers are fuming and have a lot to say about the latest development. Eines ist mir aber nicht erinnerlich.. gab es schon jemals eine Flüchtlingswelle wegen verwehrter Dienste: Syrians flocking to Lebanon to use Facebook Das blogger wie Karfan nach Libanon zum bloggen gehen müssen war mir bekannt.

*** Annapolis-Prozeß: Arab League foreign ministers will meet at the League's headquarters in Cairo on Friday for talks aimed at forging a common position ahead of a U.S.-sponsored peace conference next week. The meeting brings together foreign ministers from the contact group delegated by the League to follow up on the Arabs' 2002 peace initiative. Friday's League meeting could see Saudi Arabia announce whether or not it will join the conference in Annapolis, Maryland, which the U.S. hopes will launch negotiations to end the six-decade-old Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Zuvor hatte sich der ägyptische Aussenminister wenig Richtungsweisend geäußert: If Israel moves forward with peace negotiations following the Annapolis summit, Arab states will respond with positive steps, according to Egyptian Foreign Minister Ahmed Aboul Gheit, in an interview he gave in his Cairo office on the 30th anniversary of Anwar Sadat's visit to Jerusalem. "Egypt is saying clearly every step on the part of Israel will be met with a step. We will not ask you to first make full peace with the Palestinians before we move toward you," Aboul Gheit said. ... Regarding the summit at Annapolis and the participation of Saudi Arabia, Aboul Gheit said that he would comment on that only after the meeting of the Arab League foreign ministers, which began Thursday in Cairo. He said he did "not know" whether Syria would participate in the summit, but his comments suggested that he believed that Arab states should take part. "Every country will decide whether it will participate on the basis of the national responsibility it feels and the need to assist the Palestinians." Meanwhile, Israeli and Palestinian negotiators have still not managed to draft a common declaration that is meant to be one of the highlights at Annapolis, signaling the start of intensive negotiations between the two sides for a peace agreement. No further meetings on the issue have been scheduled for the time remaining before Olmert travels to Washington to attend the conference. [Info: Falls es morgen keine Termine gibt wäre frühestens der Sonntag als nächster Termin möglich. Ein Indiz über den Verhandlungsstand ist die Abreise PM Ehud Olmerts. Falls er recht früh nach Amerika aufbricht um ein Rahmenprogramm zu bedienen erwartet man keinerlei ERfolgsaussichten. Bleibt er sieht das schon anders aus.] Ein kurzer Kommentar zu der bereits von mir im vorletzten post beschriebenen "King David Hotel" Situation von Amira Hass: The question is why the Palestinian side made do with such a banal statement and did not prevent Israel from changing the West Bank's geography again and again. If it's only a draft, one would expect the Palestinians to set the bar higher at the outset, with explicit demands: to freeze the construction in the settlements, to stop land confiscation, to stop building the double road system for settlers and Palestinians, to remove the roadblocks. As far as the Palestinian public is concerned, these are the counter-demands to the Israeli insistence on fighting terror, radicalization, incitement, etc. which are all included in the draft and partly signed by the Palestinians as well. Hier erscheint ein kurzes Interview mit Ehud Barak: Syrian participation at the Annapolis peace summit next week would be a positive step that could "open the door" for full-fledged peace negotiations between Syria and Israel, Defense Minister Ehud Barak told The Jerusalem Post on Thursday. "I hope that Syria and Saudi Arabia come to the summit," Barak said in an interview with the Post ahead of his trip to the US Saturday night to attend next week's Middle East summit at the Annapolis Naval Academy. While the Israeli-Palestinian conflict was the "key issue" on the summit's agenda, Barak said "it will be good for Israel" if Syria participates. Ebenda hat Herb Kenon eine andere Theorie bezüglich des Fehlschlagens einen gemeinsamen Text zu organisieren: The Palestinian Authority is not interested - because of domestic political concerns - in issuing a joint document at the upcoming meeting in Annapolis, according to current assessments in Jerusalem. Während dessen wird Ehud Olmert erleichtert feststellen das der Protestaufschrei innerhalb der Siedlerbewegung eher mäßiges Niveau erreich. Symbolische Aktionen, kleinere Texte. Keine millionenschweren Demos in Tel Aviv, keine Anschläge, keine dramatischen Szenen. Vor Annapolis wohlgemerkt. Aus dem Ausland wird gar vermeldet: A week ahead of the Annapolis peace meeting, the Jewish Council for Public Affairs went somewhere other Jewish organizations have feared to tread: it hailed America's efforts and welcomed its prospects for peace. Nun, einerseits ist man des ständigen Vertretens einer kriegsführenden Partei weitläufig überdrüssig. Andererseits weiß der kluge Mensch das Annapolis eh keine direkten Auswirkungen zeitigen wird.

*** Gaza: Während am gestrigen Donnerstag über zwanzig Granateinschläge an der Grenze notiert werden, was eine eher leichte Steigerung vor Annapolis darstellt wird eine weitere formale Hürde im Bereich "Strom abdrehen" genommen: Attorney-General Menahem Mazuz on Thursday approved the Defense Ministry's plan to begin reducing the flow of electricity to the Gaza Strip as of December 2 in retaliation for Kassam attacks.

Isabel Kershner, "A nations soul at stake in battle over judiciary": In recent days, Aharon Barak, the internationally esteemed jurist and retired chief justice of Israel, has broken a self-imposed silence and spoken publicly against an old friend, Daniel Friedmann, Israel's minister of justice. The struggle between the two is part of an intense battle playing out across Israel's political and legal landscape. As Barak described it last Friday, it is "a struggle over the country's soul," specifically over the independence of the court, the separation of powers, and the fundamental question of who is in charge.

Elias H. Tuma, "Peace Conference at Annapolis!"

Agreement on a new president remained elusive on Wednesday as Arab League Secretary General Amr Moussa ended his round of talks and left Lebanon, saying only that nothing has changed but that some hope still remains for consensus. A joint news conference by Moussa and French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner at the Residence des Pins was cancelled at the last minute. Moussa said he could return to Lebanon on Friday, while Kouchner said that he would remain until then. Am Abend wurde gestreut, das die Verständigung erfolgen könne und das heute ein Präsident gewählt werden wird. Andere bezeichnen den zu wählenden als "Interimspräsidenten", also bis zu einer richtigen Wahl eine eingesetzte Figur, wahrscheinlich ein Militär. Die Hezbollah kündigt ihr Fernbleiben an.

Bitterlemons: Interview mit Naji Shurab.

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