Mahmoud Abbas

But There Is No `Palestine’

Friday, June 5th, 2009

It may seem churlish, in the wake of President Obama’s lofty speech to the Muslim world yesterday, to note that despite his references to “Palestine,” there is no such entity.

There is the Palestinian Authority, of course, whose president is Mahmoud Abbas, and there is the belief, shared by many, that its goal is the creation of a Palestinian state, though its actions in recent years indicate otherwise.

More on Jerusalem: Peace Now weighs in on Sec. Clinton’s comments

Monday, March 9th, 2009 James Besser in Washington Earlier today the Political Insider cited the Orthodox Union’s anger at Ehud Olmert for suggesting Jerusalem must be divided as part of any peace agreement with the Palestinians, and about the silence of pro-peace process groups in response to the outgoing Prime Minister’s words.

From Israel, a Cloudy Outlook

Tuesday, February 17th, 2009

Being in Israel in the days just after the national elections didn’t leave me any clearer on what the next government will look like. It could be a narrow right-tilted coalition led by Likud leader Benjamin Netanyahu, or a broader coalition anchored by Likud and Kadima, the party with the most votes.

Netanyahu most probably would be prime minister in that case, too.

Mitchell, Israel and “Even-handedness”

Friday, January 23rd, 2009 James Besser in Washington Here’s a paradox for you: most leaders of major American Jewish groups believe there has to be a negotiated settlement of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, but many are very nervous about the appointment of former Sen. George Mitchell as the Obama administration’s special envoy in the region (Read the Jewish Week story here).  Why?

Gaza War: Reinforcing Hamas?

Thursday, January 15th, 2009 James Besser in Washington Okay, we all know by now that Israel was “justified” in mounting a major offensive against Hamas to stop the rocket fire from Gaza.  We’ve sure heard it enough from Jewish groups across the political spectrum that have rallied to Israel’s defense as, predictably, world opinion turns against the Jewish state.

Biden Hits Bush Mideast Policy, Pokes AIPAC in the Eye

Thursday, September 4th, 2008 James Besser in Washington Since becoming the Democratic vice presidential nominee last month, political observers have been wondering whether Sen. Joe Biden (D-Del.) - known for his outspoken and unpredictable ways - would curb his tongue. After all, he’s no longer just a senior senator but the junior partner in the highly disciplined Barack Obama campaign organization. A Wednesday teleconference with Jewish reporters provided a partial answer. 

With Olmert Going: What Peace Process?

Thursday, July 31st, 2008 James Besser in Washington Here’s one of the more puzzling headlines of the month, right off the AP ticker:  “US Trying to salvage Gains in Mideast Talks.” According to the story, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice called top Israel and Palestinian negotiators to Washington this week to “preserve modest momentum” in the U.S.-backed effort to get a deal - any kind of deal, please - by the end of the year and the end of President George W. Bush’s term.

McCain Slams Obama in AIPAC Speech

Sunday, June 1st, 2008 Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz) signaled an aggressive effort to win the pro-Israel vote in November with a stingingly partisan speech to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) policy conference on Monday. Breaking with a tradition generally observed by AIPAC keynoters, McCain attacked Sen. Barack Obama by name for his positions on Iran and the Iraq war. McCain warmed up a friendly crowd by indirectly criticizing Obama’s offer to meet with Iranian leaders.

What About Fatah Anti-Israel Hatred?

Thursday, April 3rd, 2008

The New York Times reports this week on the depth of anti-Jewish hatred within Hamas was well documented and important for the world to see, but it gave something of a free pass to Mahmoud Abbas, Fatah and the Palestinian Authority.

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