Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon proposed a constructive role for European leaders this week while calling on them to severe all ties with Palestinian President Yasir Arafat, who in a compromise Monday with his new prime minister still retained a grip on power.
by Steve Lipman and Stewart Ain |
In an effort to prop up a faltering Palestinian Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas, the United States was seen as pressuring Israel this week to release more Palestinian prisoners and dismantle more unauthorized outposts. But there is widespread opposition to such moves by many Israelis.
by Joshua Mitnick |
Eli Sinai, Gaza Strip — As Israel’s army began pulling out of Palestinian cities this week and terrorist groups pledged a three-month cease-fire, Israelis in this northern Gaza Strip settlement could find little evidence that the daily fighting going on just outside their window was really over.
“It still hasn’t proven itself yet,” Sarah Kahani, a nursery school teacher, told The Jewish Week. “I want to hope but I’m not 100 percent.”
by Stewart Ain and Joshua Mitnick |
Staff Writer and Israel Correspondent
Although Israel has reportedly agreed to curtail its policy of targeted attacks against Palestinian terrorists to foster the chances of a limited cease-fire that would halt two weeks of violence, Israeli analysts were skeptical it would work.
"It lasts a couple of days until a crazy sets off a bomb," said David Newman, chairman of the department of politics and government at Ben Gurion University of the Negev.
Fifty-five years ago this week, a flat-bottom ship that had conveyed American troops during World War II pulled into the Mediterranean waters near Kfar Vitkin, 23 miles north of Tel Aviv, and became a black mark in Israeli history.
The Altalena is little known to young Israelis; the Hebrew anniversary of its arrival and eventual destruction went almost unnoticed last week.
Israeli analysts were divided this week on Israelís military response to Sunday's Hamas attacks that killed five Israeli soldiers, with some arguing that the reprisal assaults set back the peace process while others insisting it will help in the long run.
"Israel tried to weaken Hamas and to help Abu Mazen," said Ephraim Inbar, director of the Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies at Bar-Ilan University.