Monday, August 31, 2009


* US needs fresh Afghan strategy A top US general in Afghanistan has called for a revised military strategy, suggesting the current one is failing.

* FM: Bilateral steps will bring peace Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman told Quartet Middle East envoy Tony Blair and EU foreign policy chief Javier Solana that bilateral initiatives, rather than unilateral steps taken by the Palestinian Authority, would promote peace in the region.

* Turks begin Iraq-Syria mediation Turkey has begun mediation between Iraq and Syria amid a deepening diplomatic row over insurgency bombings in Iraq.

* Japan's Hatoyama sweeps to power Japan's next leader, Yukio Hatoyama, is beginning a transition to power after winning a landmark general election.

* Geert Wilders: Prophet Mohammed Acted Like a Pig Dutch legislator Geert Wilders compared the prophet Mohammed with a pig after a report was published that Saudi Arabian authorities returned a runaway10-year-old bride to her 80-year-old husband.

* Taliban growth in northern Afghanistan threatens to expand war Taliban insurgents have taken over parts of two northern provinces from which they were driven in 2001, threatening to disrupt NATO's new supply route from Central Asia and expand a war that's largely been confined to Afghanistan's southern half.

* Prince Alwaleed Ranks as Richest Saudi on Arabian Business List Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, Citigroup Inc.’s largest individual investor, was ranked the richest Saudi national by Arabian Business, even after losing 4.6 percent of his personal wealth in the past year.

* Released for Publication: Israeli-Arab Plotted to Kill IDF Chief An Israeli-Arab from Tira, Rawi Sultani, was indicted for conspiring to kill senior Israeli officials, among them IDF Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi.

* Abbas aide: No talks without full settlement freeze Nabil Shaath, aide to Palestinian president says Abbas will reject any US initiative to resume peace talks with Israel unless construction in settlements frozen in full without exceptions or 'loopholes'.

* Putin Goes to Poland to Defend Memory of Soviet Army Prime Minister Vladimir Putin travels to Poland today as Russia seeks to defend the role of the Soviet Union in eastern Europe during World War II.

Saturday, August 29, 2009


* UN: Iran nuclear program may have 'military dimensions' A new report commissioned by the International Atomic Energy Agency says that Iran's nuclear energy program may contain "military dimensions."

* UAE seizes N. Korea arms on way to Iran The United Arab Emirates has seized a cargo ship bound for Iran with a cache of banned rocket-propelled grenades and other arms from North Korea.

* Minister: Iran entered nuclear marketplace The Iranian Economy Minister says Iran has entered the nuclear marketplace due to its latest achievements in mastering the technology.

* August is deadliest month for U.S. military in Afghanistan August has become the deadliest month for the U.S. military in Afghanistan since the U.S. invasion after the attacks of September 11, 2001.

* Karzai pulls ahead in Afghan polls Hamid Karzai, Afghanistan's president, has increased his lead over his closest rival in the race to be the next Afghan president.

* 'US may cancel Europe missile shield' The Obama administration has developed possible alternative plans for a missile defense shield in Poland and the Czech Republic.

* Attacks in Iraqi cities claim lives Two bomb attacks in northern Iraq have killed at least 15 people and wounded more than 30 others.

* Egypt: Israeli freeze must include east Jerusalem Egypt's foreign minister says east Jerusalem must be included in a freeze of Israeli settlement activity before Middle East peace talks can restart.

* U.S. Army chief: U.S. bungling Muslim outreach The U.S. military is bungling its efforts to win over Muslim friends and squandering good will by failing to live up to its promises.

* Space shuttle lifts off for ISS Nasa has launched the US shuttle Discovery for a mission to the International Space Station (ISS), with seven astronauts on board.

Friday, August 28, 2009


* Ahmadinejad Urges Prosecution of Political Rivals President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad lashed out at his chief political rivals on Friday.

* Hiding the truth about Husseini The publicly funded Multicultural Center's (Werkstatt der Kulturen) decision to remove educational panels of the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, Hajj Muhammad Amin al-Husseini, who was an ally of Adolf Hitler, from a planned exhibit, sparked outrage.

* Al Qaeda video calls on Muslims to support militants Al Qaeda's second-in-command called on Pakistanis to back Islamic militants in the country's tribal areas against what he called an ongoing assault by American "crusaders" and the Pakistani army.

* Ban Ki-moon: Palestinian unity crucial to Mideast peace talks It is "crucial" for Palestinians to show unity in order to proceed with negotiations with Israel.

* 5 arrested at Ramadan prayers in J'lem Some 90,000 Muslims worshipped at the Aksa Mosque on Jerusalem's Temple Mount on Friday as part of a Ramadan celebration that has been marred by violence in previous years.

* Parliament chief wants mid-September decision on Barroso The president of the European Parliament, Jerzy Buzek, has encouraged his fellow MEPs to make a quick decision on the re-appointment of European Commission head Jose Manuel Barroso.

* August deadliest month for US in Afghanistan An American service member died in a bomb blast in Afghanistan on Friday.

* Kosovo leadership confronts EU authorities The president and prime minister of Kosovo have walked out of talks with EU representatives in the first serious bilateral rift since Kosovo declared independence last year.

* Saudi Royal Survives Attack Claimed By Qaeda A senior member of Saudi Arabia's royal family who is in charge of the kingdom's anti-terrorism campaign has survived a suicide attack by an al Qaeda-linked group.

* US general: Impact of Iraq violence still unclear The U.S. Army's top general said Friday that it was too early to tell whether a recent spike in violence in Iraq that has killed hundreds will have an impact on the pace that Washington withdraws its troops from the country.

Thursday, August 27, 2009


* PA judge: Jews have no history in Jerusalem The Palestinian Authority's chief Islamic judge, Sheikh Tayseer Rajab Tamimi, said on Wednesday that there was no evidence to back up claims that Jews had ever lived in Jerusalem or that the Temple ever existed.

* Netanyahu in Germany: We Must Stop Evil in Due Time Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu received on Thursday in Germany 29 sketches of the Auschwitz death camp and declared, "We cannot allow evil to cause massive death. We must stop evil in due time."

* Israeli PM meets Germany's Merkel Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is in Berlin for talks with the German chancellor.

* Israel 'Super Gas' Field is World's Largest in 18 Months The Tamar gas field, 50 miles off the Haifa coast, keeps getting bigger with every report.

* War in Sudan's Darfur 'is over' The six-year war between forces loyal to Sudan's government and rebels in Darfur has effectively ended.

* Israeli, Jordanian Scientists Squeezing Costs from Desalination Israeli and Jordanian scientists are working on a new way to reduce the cost of purifying water from the sea.

* Iranian protesters 'not agents' Iran's supreme leader says he has seen no proof that opposition leaders blamed for the post-election unrest were agents of foreign powers.

* U.S. drops demand for Israel building freeze in East Jerusalem The Obama administration has agreed to Israel's request to remove East Jerusalem from negotiations on the impending settlement freeze.

* U.N. seeks $230M to fight Kenya hunger Kenya needs $230 million over the next six months to feed millions affected by drought.

* Richard Branson: Without Mideast resolution, 'something ghastly' could happen The press loves him. A media baron with a colorful lifestyle and exuberant joie de vivre, Richard Branson today controls an empire of no less than 200 companies, emblemized by the Virgin logo.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009


* PM: We've been building in Jerusalem for 3,000 years Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met Tuesday afternoon with UK Premier Gordon Brown. Netanyahu had to be ushered into the official Downing Street residence via the back door.

* Palestinian officials: 'Abbas willing to meet with Netanyahu' Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas is open to a meeting with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu at the United Nations next month.

* Euro rises on German confidence The euro hit a two-and-a-half-month high against the pound after a survey showed confidence among German firms was growing.

* Hariri: Hizbullah will join next gov't Hizbullah will be part of the next Lebanese government "whether Israel likes it or not".

* EU to hold special summit on financial reform EU leaders are to gather on 17 September for an extra summit to decide Europe's position ahead of global talks on financial reform.

* Karzai widens lead over Abdullah in Afghan vote Afghanistan's election commission says President Hamid Karzai has expanded his lead over top challenger Abdullah Abdullah.

* Iraq summons Syrian diplomat in Baghdad over bombs Iraq's foreign ministry summoned a senior Syrian diplomat in Baghdad Wednesday amid a diplomatic row over Iraqi demands.

* PLO holds poll amid criticism The Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) is facing claims it is no longer relevant as members of the legislative body.

* Karadzic: US helped Iran arm Muslims Radovan Karadzic is seeking evidence that the US turned a blind eye to weapon shipments from Iran to Muslim forces fighting in the Bosnian war.

* Israel and US discuss settlements Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu has met US envoy George Mitchell as part of a renewed drive to reach a deal on Jewish settlements in the occupied West Bank.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009


* Meridor: We won't return to the line of 1967 "Surely, nobody expects [Prime Minister Binyamin] Netanyahu to offer more than what [former prime minister Ehud] Olmert offered [to Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas]".

* Karzai edges ahead in Afghan poll Initial counting from Afghanistan's presidential election shows incumbent Hamid Karzai with a slight lead.

* Fayad: De facto state within 2 years Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Salaam Fayad on Tuesday unveiled a plan to create a de facto Palestinian state in two years.

* New Iraqi political alliance excludes al-Maliki Iraq's main Shiite parties Monday announced the formation of a new alliance that excludes the prime minister.

* Yosef asks Carter to help free Schalit In a meeting Tuesday with former US president Jimmy Carter, Shas spiritual leader Rabbi Ovadiah Yosef asked for his help in arranging the release of captured IDF soldier Gilad Schalit.

* Iran has not expanded uranium enrichment since May Iran has not expanded the number of centrifuges enriching uranium at its Natanz nuclear site since the end of May.

* Netanyahu in UK: Settlement construction not a land grab Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu emerged from his meeting with British Prime Minister Gordon Brown Tuesday afternoon in London saying that Israel and the US were trying to come up with "a bridging formula".

* Israel Makes Waves by Simulating an Earthquake The Seismologic Division of the Ministry of National Infrastructure's Geophysical Institute will attempt to simulate an earthquake in the southern Negev on Thursday.

* Dead Sea reaches finals in vote on world's 7 natural wonders The Dead Sea is among 14 finalists in a global Internet poll to choose the seven wonders of the natural world.

* EU to table new immigration rules in September Brussels is finalising fresh proposals on European Union immigration policy, including a potentially controversial system of re-distributing refugees and asylum seekers.

Monday, August 24, 2009


* Israel won't accept limitations on its sovereignty in Jerusalem Netanyahu will make it clear in his discussions with US and European officials abroad that Israel will not accept any limitations on its sovereignty in Jerusalem.

* Iran wants West to resume interaction Iran wants the West to change its nuclear policy of sanctions and resume "interaction" with the Persian nation, Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Hasan Qashqavi said.

* Peres: Hizbullah has 80,000 weapons Hizbullah has stockpiled 80,000 weapons which can be used against Israel, President Shimon Peres told Kuwaiti paper al-Rai, some three times more than it had prior to the Second Lebanon War.

* IDF moves one step closer to getting Iron Dome The IDF moved one step closer to receiving the Iron Dome last week after the Israeli Air Force completed the establishment of the new battalion that will operate the short-range missile defense system.

* Saudis, Israel to lead Mideast arms buys Defense expenditure in the Middle East will cross the $100 billion mark in the coming five years, mainly due to deals Gulf states are closing out of fear of Iran's nuclear program.

* Lebanon will never negotiate with Israel - directly or indirectly Lebanese Foreign Minister Fawzi Salloukh said that Beirut would never negotiate with Israel over the return of captured land, reiterating the government's stance that Lebanon would be the last Arab state to sign a peace treaty with Jerusalem.

* EU verdict on Afghan poll faces objections While the EU has praised Afghanistan for its conduct of last week's presidential election, Abdullah Abdullah, the main challenger to the country's incumbent president, said the poll had been rigged in favour of Hamid Karzai.

* EU presidency under pressure over Israel organs story With Israeli leader Benjamin Netanyahu arriving in Europe for talks set to focus on settlement expansion, EU presidency country Sweden is embroiled in a diplomatic crisis with Tel Aviv over a newspaper article about Israeli soldiers harvesting Palestinian organs.

* Iraqi Shias form new alliance A group of Shia Muslim parties in Iraq have formed a coalition ahead of January's election, but Nouri al-Maliki, the prime minister, has not joined the bloc.

* Afghan conflict serious, 'deteriorating'-Mullen The situation in Afghanistan is deteriorating along with U.S. public support for the war, Washington's top military officer said on Sunday as he left open the possibility of another increase in troops.

Saturday, August 22, 2009


* Iraqi FM warns of bigger, more powerful attacks Iraq's foreign minister said Saturday that Iraqis should be prepared for bigger, more powerful attacks to strike the capital in the coming days and urged the government to immediately fix security shortcomings among its forces.

* Gaddafi seen meeting bomber on TV Libyan leader Colonel Gaddafi has defied strong criticism from the UK and the US by meeting Lockerbie bomber Abdelbaset Ali al-Megrahi on Libyan TV.

* The lost Palestinian Jews "We are of the same race and blood, and cooperation will bring great prosperity to the land," wrote Emir Faisal to Felix Frankfurter in 1917.

* Muslims begin Ramadan holy month The Islamic holy month of Ramadan has begun across most of the Muslim world, ushering in 30 days of dawn to dusk fasting and extra prayer.

* Pakistani Taliban say new leader chosen Leading Pakistani Taliban commander Hakimullah Mehsud has been appointed the new head of the militant group.

* Obama in Ramadan message: U.S. unyielding in support for Palestinian state The United States is "unyielding" in its support for a two-state solution between Israel and the Palestinians.

* Afghan polling 'marked by fraud' A leading group of election observers say there was widespread voting fraud and intimidation during Thursday's presidential election in Afghanitan.

* Iranian cabinet nominee wanted in 1994 Argentina terror attack The man Iran's president has named to be defense minister is wanted in the 1994 bombing of a Jewish cultural center in Buenos Aires.

* US: Iran's work with IAEA not enough A senior US official said Friday that Iran was not fully cooperating with International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

* France to roll out EU welcome for Turkmen chief The president of Turkmenistan is likely to make a state visit to France in November amid EU efforts to build relations with one of the world's most closed regimes.

Friday, August 21, 2009


* Afghan rivals claim poll victory The two leading contenders for Afghanistan's presidential election have both claimed victory.

* 'Saudi Arabia planning nuclear plant' With the world seemingly unable to stop Iran's nuclear march, other countries in the region are now pushing forward with their own plans to build nuclear power plants.

* Anger at Lockerbie bomber welcome Britain and the US have strongly condemned the jubilant welcome given in Libya to the man convicted of the bombing of a US plane over Lockerbie.

* Former U.S. Statesmen Say U.S. Role Critical to Securing Middle East Peace The meeting between President Barak Obama and Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak this week (Tuesday) was the latest in a series of meetings aimed at exploring new avenues for peace between Israel and its Arab neighbors.

* Israel fury at Sweden organ claim Israel is to lodge an official complaint with Sweden over claims in a newspaper that Israeli soldiers killed Palestinians to sell their organs.

* Germany: Settlements major impediment to peace The German government said ahead of a visit next week by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that urgent action was needed on Israeli settlements in the West Bank in order to move towards peace in the Middle East.

* WHO predicts 'explosion' of swine flu cases The global spread of swine flu will endanger more lives as it speeds up in the coming months and governments must boost preparations for a swift response to a coming "explosion" of cases.

* Haredi writer: Gays should be forced to face firing squad A Haredi Web site this week published an article calling for police to arrest the managers of the Tel Aviv gay center that was the scene of a shooting that left two dead earlier this month.

* Czech senators in fresh move against Lisbon treaty A group of centre-right Czech senators has attacked a national law linked with the EU's Lisbon Treaty and plans to ask the country's constitutional court to suspend ratification until the legislation is changed.

* Muslim Holy Month Set to Begin This Week Ramadan, the Muslim holy month of fasting and prayer, is to begin later this week.

Thursday, August 20, 2009


* Poll: Only 12 percent of Israelis believe Obama supports Israel Only 12 percent of Israelis believe U.S. President Barack Obama's policies are supportive of Israel.

* China's secretive military launches Web site China's Defense Ministry launched its first official Web site Thursday.

* Lockerbie bomber returns to Libya The Lockerbie bomber has left Scotland on board a plane bound for Libya after being freed from prison on compassionate grounds.

* Al-Qaida-style Islamism comes to Gaza Quiet has now returned to the Gaza Strip after the weekend violence which claimed the lives of 28 people.

* Iran's president unveils cabinet Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, whose disputed re-election triggered a political crisis in the country, has unveiled his list of cabinet ministers.

* Hamas Trains New Generation of Teenage Terrorists Hamas is training a new generation of terrorists in Gaza, where 50 percent of the population is under the age of 18.

* Yaalon: Jews Must Live Everywhere in Israel In an address to the Jewish Leadership faction of the Likud on Sunday night, Deputy Prime Minister Moshe Yaalon expressed strong support for continued Jewish growth in Judea and Samaria.

* EU to monitor Afghan elections despite attacks EU election monitors in Afghanistan will carry on their mission during the presidential vote on Thursday.

* Obama's main man in the Middle East? US President Barack Obama's Middle Eastern strategy isn't working, but his meeting with Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak on Tuesday was unlikely to help him.

* Pakistan Taliban 'power struggle' A power struggle has broken out between the diverse militant factions that make up the Pakistani Taliban.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009


* UN watchdog hiding evidence on Iran nuclear program The world's nuclear weapons watchdog is hiding data on Iran's drive to obtain nuclear arms.

* Dozens killed in Baghdad attacks Truck bombs and a barrage of mortars have killed at least 75 people and hurt at least 310 in central Baghdad in the deadliest series of attacks in months.

* 'Russia to rethink S-300 sale to Iran' President Shimon Peres said Wednesday the Kremlin has promised to reconsider the planned delivery of air defense missiles to Iran.

* New Israeli settlements 'on hold' Israel's government has stopped issuing settler housing tenders in the West Bank, hoping to reach common ground with the US.

* Assad in Iran to congratulate Ahmadinejad, free academic Syrian President Bashar Assad opened talks with Iranian officials Wednesday in a visit expected to include an appeal to free a French academic accused of plotting to overthrow the Islamic regime.

* Mubarak: U.S. will unveil first draft of Mideast plan next month President Barack Obama has promised Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak that he will present a rough draft of his Middle East peace plan in September.

* Turkey: Israel must show it wants peace Israel must take steps to show that it wants a resolution of the Arab-Israeli conflict.

* German political parties agree Lisbon treaty law Germany's ruling political parties on Tuesday (18 August) reached agreement on how to implement the Lisbon treaty after week's of negotiations.

* Peres: Israel, PA, U.S. ready for 3-way summit President Shimon Peres told reporters during an official visit to Russia on Wednesday that he welcomed a future meeting between President Barack Obama, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.

* Violence Shakes Kabul on Afghan Election Eve Afghan security forces are making their presence felt in Kabul after gunmen wearing suicide vests stormed a bank in the capital on the eve of national elections.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009


* Huckabee says two states in Holy Land 'unrealistic' Former US presidential hopeful Mike Huckabee said Tuesday there is no room for a Palestinian state "in the middle of the Jewish homeland".

* Deadly pre-poll attack hits Kabul A suicide car bomber has killed seven people in an attack on a convoy of Western troops in the Afghan capital.

* Peres stresses Iran threat to Medvedev Russian President Dmitry Medvedev hosted President Shimon Peres for talks Tuesday that were expected to focus on the Middle East and the Iranian nuclear standoff.

* Mubarak makes White House return President Hosni Mubarak of Egypt is preparing for his first talks at the White House since 2002, when a chill descended on US-Egyptian ties.

* Iranian Ayatollah Creates 'Private' Militia Iran's top leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, has established a new security force personally loyal to him.

* Arab League wants EU to back monitoring of Israeli nukes The Arab League has requested that the European Union back its resolution calling on Israel to submit to international monitoring of its alleged nuclear capability.

* Iran: No preconditions for nuke talks Teheran is ready for nuclear talks with the West without preconditions, a senior Iranian nuclear official was quoted.

* Iraq-Syria set for security talks Iraq's prime minister is visiting neighbouring Syria for talks that are expected to focus on border security.

* Huckabee's visit - show of support,or well-planned attack? Former Arkansas governor and US presidential hopeful Mike Huckabee kicked off his visit to Israel on Monday by telling reporters that recent American policy toward the Jewish state has been "far more harsh" than that of previous administrations.

* Violence, graft overshadow Afghan elections An incumbent president and 38 challengers, including two women, are vying for the votes of 17 million registered Afghans against a backdrop of war, graft, poverty and illiteracy.

Monday, August 17, 2009


* US shouldn't tell Jews where to live Former Arkansas governor and presidential hopeful Mike Huckabee says the US has taken too harsh a stance against Israel on the issue of settlements.

* Mubarak in Washington In February 1982 when Hosni Mubarak made his first visit to Washington as Egypt's president, it was Ronald Reagan who was waiting for him in the White House.

* Settlers: Rabbis' support for dismantling of outpost homes not a precedent Rabbi Haim Druckman ruled it was permitted according to Halacha to voluntarily evacuate three modular homes at the unauthorized Bnei Adam outpost.

* Deadly blasts hit Iraq market Two bomb blasts in a crowded Baghdad market have killed at least eight people and wounded 21, Iraqi officials say.

* Anti-gay attacks on rise in Iraq Gay Iraqi men are being murdered in what appears to be a co-ordinated campaign involving militia forces.

* Twitter tweets are 40% babble A study of messages sent by users of micro-blogging site Twitter finds that 40% of tweets are "pointless babble".

* Google Goes Palestinian Google, which came online 10 years ago with its leading internet search engine, has taken a political stand, opening up a domain specifically for Palestinian Authority and Gaza Arabs.

* World's smallest laser unveiled The spaser promises ultrafast nanocircuits.

* Mubarak: Peace Now, Israel Later Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, several hours before his scheduled meeting on Monday with U.S. President Barack Obama, said that the Arab world will not make any gestures towards Israel until a regional treaty is signed.

* Peres heads to Russia for state visit President Shimon Peres travels to Russia for a two-day state visit at the invitation of Russian President Dmitry Medvedev.

Saturday, August 15, 2009


* Gaza Islamist leader dies in raid The leader of a radical Islamist group involved in a shootout with Hamas in Gaza is one of at least 24 people killed in the raid.

* Nasrallah: We can hit any Israeli city Recent Israeli warnings were part of a "psychological war" aimed at preventing Hezbollah from joining a new Lebanese unity government, group leader Hassan Nasrallah said.

* Hamas, Fatah trade accusations over Gaza clashes Islamic Hamas movement and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas's Fatah party on Saturday traded accusations over deadly clashes.

* Mubarak travels to U.S. to meet with Obama Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak departed for Washington on Saturday, his first visit to the U.S. capital in five years.

* Iraqi protest at media censorship About 200 Iraqi journalists, writers and publishers have protested in Baghdad at what they say is growing state interference in their work.

* 20 Syrian civilians killed in failed missile test Twenty Syrian civilians were killed and 60 more were injured after a Scud missile test-fired jointly by Syria, North Korea and Iran in late May strayed off course.

* Profile: Jund Ansar Allah The Palestinian Islamist militant group Jund Ansar Allah, or the Soldiers of the Companions of God, announced its presence in the Gaza Strip in June.

* Top rabbis declare day of fasting over 'evil' swine flu Two leading Israeli rabbis have announced this coming Wednesday will be a day of fasting and prayer because of the swine flu epidemic.

* 'Arab tycoons bought land in Galilee' Wealthy individuals from Arab states that do not have diplomatic relations with Israel have recently procured hundreds of dunams of private agricultural land in the Galilee.

* Turkey marks 25 years of Kurd rebellion Turkey marked 25 years Saturday since the first Kurdish rebel attacks.

Friday, August 14, 2009


* Poll: 70% of Americans see Israel as U.S. friend More than two-third of Americans regard Israel as an ally despite recent diplomatic tensions.

* 'Hamas ready for Obama's ME peace plan' Hamas is prepared to deal "positively" with US President Barack Obama's Middle East peace plan.

* Following election triumph, Fatah sets out to 'liberate' Gaza At the start of the week, a member of Iz al-Din al-Qassam, the military wing of Hamas, died in the Palestinian Authority's Juneid Prison.

* Arabs to EU: Make Israel expose nukes Arab states are lobbying the European Union for support in their drive to force Israel to open up its secretive nuclear program to international perusal.

* Assad to visit Iran to congratulate Ahmadinejad Syrian President Bashar Assad was scheduled to embark on an official visit to Tehran next week.

* Beirut braces for Hizbullah rally marking 'victory over Israel' Hizbullah will mark three years since the "victory over Israel" in the Second Lebanon War with a rally in the Dahiya neighborhood in south Beirut on Friday evening.

* Pakistan's tribal areas to get parliamentary reps Pakistan lifted a ban on political activities in its tribal regions on Friday.

* Syria insists on Turkish mediation in peace talks Syrian Ambassador to Turkey Nidal Kablan said his country would not give up on the Turkish mediation.

* All Fatah's Gaza leaders quit over vote Fatah appeared to be in turmoil on Thursday as a large number of its top representatives questioned the credibility of the elections.

* J'lem not counting on Gulf states' gestures The winds of change blowing in from the Gulf are being received coldly in Jerusalem.

Thursday, August 13, 2009


* Earthquake Strikes South of Tokyo; Third Since Aug. 9 A magnitude-6.6 earthquake struck south of Tokyo at 7:49 a.m. local time today.

* Israel shuts door on Turkish-mediated Syria talks Israel under right-wing Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will not resume Turkish-mediated peace talks with Syria.

* Iran seeks ban on striking nuclear installations Iran, whose nuclear facilities are under threat of possible Israeli military strikes, proposed Wednesday that a 150-nation conference convening in the fall ban such attacks.

* The Revolutionary Guard: Gaining Power in Iran? The shadowy Revolutionary Guard already oversees a 130,000-strong parallel army and run large swatches of Iran's economy.

* World population projected to reach 7 billion in 2011 The world's population is forecast to hit 7 billion in 2011, the vast majority of its growth coming in developing and, in many cases, the poorest nations.

* Huckabee to speak at east Jerusalem hotel Former Arkansas governor and US presidential hopeful Mike Huckabee will take part in a reception at the Shepherd's Hotel in east Jerusalem.

* France and Germany exit recession The French and German economies both grew by 0.3% between April and June, bringing to an end year-long recessions in Europe's largest economies.

* Out of WAC: World Archaeological Congress Excludes Israel The World Archaeological Congress (WAC), presently convening a conference of archaeologists from all over the world, has excluded Israel even though the conference is taking place in Ramallah.

* US delegates blame Palestinians for no peace talks The head of a delegation of US Democratic members of Congress blamed the Palestinians on Thursday for failing to hold talks with Israel.

* Hezbollah suspected of setting up camp in Venezuela Venezuela has become Hezbollah's major terrorist outpost in South America.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009


* Israeli paper says strike on Iran could delay bomb A major Israeli newspaper ran a front-page story on Wednesday quoting an unidentified "senior defence official" as saying Israel believed a military strike could disrupt what it says is an Iranian nuclear arms program.

* Russia to boost Abkhazia presence Russia is to spend almost $500m (£300m) next year reinforcing its military bases in Georgia's breakaway region of Abkhazia.

* China warns of 'arms race in outer space' China's Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi called Wednesday for international diplomacy to avert an "arms race in outer space."

* Fatah Conference Boosts Abbas, but Peace May Remain Elusive Leadership elections inside Fatah, the party of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, are a lot like comets: they only come around every 20 years or so.

* Extremist Christians: 'God hates Jews' Members of the extremist Westboro Baptist Church, known for its anti-gay and anti-Semitic rhetoric, protested in front of several Jewish institutions in New York on Tuesday.

* Israel 'won't make Jordan Palestine' A delegation of security officials secretly traveled to Jordan last week in an attempt to assuage concerns that Israel plans to transfer Palestinians from the West Bank to the Hashemite Kingdom.

* Navy to partake in Turkish exercise In a sign that tension between Jerusalem and Ankara has cooled down, two Israeli Navy missile ships will sail to Turkey next week to participate in the annual Reliant Mermaid search-and-rescue naval exercise.

* Despite bombings, Iraq confident it can maintain security A series of bombings in Baghdad and Mosul on Monday killed at least 49 people and wounded more than 230 in the latest attack.

* German Jews back campaign to reprint 'Mein Kampf' German academics who have been engaged for years in a campaign calling for the reprinting of an annotated version of Adolf Hitler's "Mein Kampf" ("My Struggle") received support from an unlikely source.

* New Google 'puts Bing in shade' Google has lifted the lid on its updated search engine, which developers have nicknamed "Caffeine".

Tuesday, August 11, 2009


* China's military launches long-range war games China's military launched war games Tuesday aimed at deploying forces at long distances, reflecting moves to ensure security in the restive western regions of Tibet and Xinjiang.

* Jihadis thrice attacked Pakistan nuclear sites Pakistan's nuclear facilities have already been attacked at least thrice by its home-grown extremists and terrorists.

* Dahlan: No peace talks without deadline Former Palestinian security commander Mohammed Dahlan, who was apparently elected Tuesday to Fatah's Central Committee, said that he would allow no one to negotiate with Israel unless a deadline for peace talks is announced in advance.

* Russia sees U.S. space threat, builds new rocket The United States will be able to hit any target in Russia from space by 2030.

* Hizbullah Boasts, Dismisses Talk of War Several leaders of the Iranian-controlled Lebanese terrorist organization Hizbullah have bragged about their military capabilities.

* NSC: Avoid traveling to Jordan, Egypt The National Security Council Counter-Terrorism Bureau issued updated travel warnings on Tuesday.

* Strong quakes hit Japan and India A strong earthquake has struck Tokyo and central Japan, halting train services, closing motorways and causing a nuclear power station to shut down.

* 'Crisis satellite' returns images Britain's latest imaging satellite has returned its first pictures.

* 71 Senators to Obama: How About Pressuring the Arabs? No fewer than 71 US Senators – including only six of the 13 Jewish ones – sent a letter to US President Barack Obama.

* Medvedev lambasts Ukraine leader Russian President Dmitry Medvedev has made a scathing attack on Ukraine's president, accusing him of "anti-Russian" behaviour.

Monday, August 10, 2009


* Militants launch Afghan attacks Taliban militants have attacked official buildings in east Afghanistan, firing rockets at a police headquarters and government offices, officials say.

* Netanyahu sends out warning to Beirut Netanyahu warned Beirut if Hezbollah becomes an official member of Lebanon's government, "we will hold the government accountable for any aggression."

* Fatah backs two-state solution, sharpening rift with Hamas Fatah endorsed the creation of a Palestinian state alongside Israel, underlining its ideological conflict with the Islamist Hamas.

* A fifth of European Union will be Muslim by 2050 Britain, Spain and Holland will have an even higher proportion of Muslims in a shorter amount of time

* 66% of Jews: Our Sovereignty in Jerusalem is Indisputable 66 percent of Israeli Jews believe that Jerusalem in its entirety is Israel’s capital and that Israel’s right to build anywhere within the city is indisputable.

* Bomb attacks in Iraq kill dozens At least four bombs have exploded in Iraq, killing about 40 people and wounding more than 200.

* Economic outlook: Oil prices cloud recovery hopes The nascent recovery in global economic activity could yet be derailed by rising oil prices, with Brent crude hitting $76 a barrel last week, its highest levels of the year to date.

* Netanyahu: Gush Katif One Expulsion Too Many Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, who voted with the Sharon government four years to expel 10,000 Jews from their Gaza and northern Samarian homes, told the Cabinet he will not repeat the same mistake.

* EU takes tough stance on Iran trials Sweden's EU presidency has criticized Iran for putting on trial British and French embassy staff, saying that action against individual member states is viewed as action against all of Europe and "will be treated accordingly."

* Iran to US: We won't agree to negotiations deadline US administration sends message to Iran expressing interest in direct talks on nuclear issue, but qualifies that response from Tehran must be received by end of September.