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Middle East

Lebanon Teeters On The Brink Again

Raging gun battles in the center of Beirut on August 14 claimed the lives of seven people and raised the grim specter that Lebanon may be returning to the era of sectarian violence that climaxed with the outbreak of the civil war from 1975 to 1990. Fighting erupted after two influential Shi’a Muslim militias, Hezbollah […]

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Middle East

Jewish Settler Violence Rocks The West Bank

The incidence of Jewish settler violence in the Israeli-occupied West Bank has increased exponentially in the past few years, and is aimed primarily at Palestinians but also at Israeli security forces. There were 363 violent incidents in 2019, 507 in 2020 and 416 in the first half of this year, according to the latest statistics […]

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Middle East

A Friend Of Israel And The Jewish People

In what was widely seen as a “farewell” trip, the outgoing chancellor of Germany, Angela Merkel, paid a two-day visit to Israel late last week and this week. It was her seventh and last official visit during 16 years in office. Merkel, 67, currently leads a transitional caretaker government. She will remain in office until […]

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Middle East

A Diplomatic Flashpoint: The U.S. Consulate In Jerusalem

Israel and its chief ally, the United States, appear to be on a collision course over Washington’s plan to reopen its consulate in Jerusalem. U.S. Secretary State Antony Blinken announced the decision on May 25 following a meeting with the president of the Palestinian Authority, Mahmoud Abbas, in Ramallah. Blinken described it as a measure […]

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Middle East

Israeli Settlements And International Law

Israel has contravened international law by building settlements in the occupied West Bank and populating them with Jewish settlers, says prominent Israeli human rights lawyer Michael Sfard. Through such methods since the 1967 Six Day War, Israel has “reengineered” the demography of the West Bank, which many Israelis regard as their ancestral homeland and which […]

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Middle East

The Meltdown Of A Normalization Conference

It was a bolt out of the blue and it fizzled spectacularly. On September 24, 300 Sunni and Shi’a Muslim Iraqis attended an unprecedented conference in northern Iraq during which they called for peace and reconciliation with Israel, Iraq’s longtime enemy. It took place in Erbil, the capital of the semi-autonomous Kurdish region, which has […]

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Middle East

The Iron Dome and Progressive Democrats

Progressives in the Democratic Party in the United States are turning out to be a real thorn in Israel’s side. In the past few years, this pro-Palestinian group has lambasted Israel’s occupation of the West Bank and denounced Israel as an apartheid state.¬†Of late, they have escalated their campaign by trying to deny military aid […]

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Middle East

Naftali Bennett Hews To The Status Quo

With a little more than 100 days having elapsed since he succeeded Benjamin Netanyahu as Israel’s prime minister, Naftali Bennett has hewed to the status quo with respect to two major interrelated issues — the Palestinians and Israeli settlements in the West Bank. Bennett leads an extremely diverse coalition consisting of eight of the 13 […]

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Middle East

The Abraham Accords One Year On

A few days ago, at a Zoom event marking the first anniversary of the signing of the Abraham Accords at the White House in Washington, D.C., Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid invited yet more Arab nations to normalize relations with Israel. “The Abraham Accords club is open for new members as well,” said Lapid in […]

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Middle East

Israel’s Relations With Egypt Are Improving

Judging by Prime Minister Naftali Bennett’s meeting yesterday with President Abdel Fattah el-Sissi in the Sinai Peninsula resort of Sharm el-Sheikh, Israel’s mercurial relations with Egypt are improving. Describing it as an “important and very good meeting,” Bennett said it “laid the foundation for deep ties” in the future. He did not elaborate, but the […]