Cyprus and Israel have grown closer in recent months over the massive natural gas discovery that transcends their respective maritime exclusive economic zones. But when it comes to the military occupations in which the two countries have long been embroiled, political friendship has its limits. Recently-elected president of the Republic of Cyprus (RoC) Nicos Anastasiades, elected in January 2013, spoke at Tel Aviv University's Faculty of Law Tuesday evening following an official visit that included meetings with both Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and President Shimon Peres. His talk was a full-throated call to nurture the budding friendship it has sparked…Read More... | 7 Comments
Former Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak was spotted at an Istanbul airport this morning (Saturday). Barak was accompanied by his wife and a security guard. The trio was in transit and spent four hours in an airline lounge. Barak served as defense minister during Operation Cast Lead in 2008-2009 and the 2010 flotilla offensive, in which nine Turkish nationals were killed by Israeli commandos onboard the Mavi Marmara. Both events led to a severe deterioration in Israeli-Turkish relations, which were partly mended recently when Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu apologized to Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan for the incident. Negotiations over…Read More... | 6 Comments
When Israel remembers the Holocaust, why does it think only of Jews? History has proven time and again that the Jews are not unique for having suffered genocidal policies. The many debates about preventing such tragedies have so far not helped populations that suffered mass killings and expulsions, with intent to destroy them for their national, religious or ethnic identity - even in recent decades. Therefore the politicization of the Armenian genocide in Israel in the context of Israel-Turkey relations, described with great eloquence by Akiva Eldar in al-Monitor, is not only wrong; it calls into question whether Israel is…Read More... | 33 Comments
A female Bahraini officer has been acquitted by a court in Manama on charges of torturing a local journalist working for a French TV and radio station. As the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) notes, reporter Nazeeha Saeed claimed: ...during her 13-hour detention, al-Moussa and the other officers blindfolded her, beat her repeatedly with a hose, pulled her hair, slapped her in the face, dunked her head in a toilet, kicked her, and forced her to sign papers she was not allowed to read. The journalist, who was later examined by a doctor, submitted several medical reports to the court…Read More... | 2 Comments
Despite its leaders’ efforts to broker an agreement, Turkey seems to be accepting the possibility of an attack on Iran as a last resort. Now its priority is to prepare for that eventuality, so that a military conflict does not take it by surprise. By Aylin Gurzel FAMAGUSTA – Turkey has tried to broker negotiations between Iran and the West over Iran’s nuclear program. But, with talks repeatedly failing to generate any substantive progress, Turkey’s leaders are beginning to consider how a strike against Iran’s nuclear facilities would affect their country’s interests. When Turkey’s Justice and Development Party (AKP) came to…Read More... | 5 Comments
AKCAKALE, TURKEY -- It has been nearly a week since a Syrian mortar shell landed on a Turkish home just across the border, killing five members of the same family. The incident brought a swift response from Turkey, and a promise by the government in Ankara that it would not hesitate to strike back, which it has done nearly every day since. But a growing role for Turkey in the Syrian conflict may also mean some tricky navigation through political and diplomatic waters. Turkey continued sending additional tanks and troops to its border with Syria, enforcing those already there,…Read More... | 4 Comments
This post has been updated. Roee was released at around 4 a.m. local time. I am writing this from a Turkish police center in Ceylanpinar. Located in eastern Turkey along the border with Syria, it is in Urfa province and it's population is mostly ethnic Kurdish. My television crew and I were filming along the border about the Kurdish divide and Turkish fears in Ankara about a power vacuum in northern Syria. Two secret police spotted us filming from a rooftop the Syrian town - in full Kurdish control, meaning no Syrian troops or rebel fighters in sight. It is…Read More... | 8 Comments
Nicosia – The small eastern Meditteranean nation of Cyprus has taken over the six-month presidency of the Council of Europe just days after two of its three largest banks asked for assistance. The lanes have all been freshly painted, the flowers have been freshly planted, and the flags have been freshly flown. Yes, the Cypriot capital has been given a face lift as the nation of a little over one million people – a figure that includes Northern Cyprus (more on that soon) - assumes the European Union’s presidency. Cypriot President Demetris Christofias could not be prouder, returning from last…Read More...
Today's state comptroller's report on the deadly 2010 flotilla raid treats it as a bureaucratic issue with no moral dimension. There's so much to say about the raid on the Turkish flotilla bound for Gaza two years ago, so much that has been said, and what's the big, long-awaited, explosive indictment in today's state comptroller's report on the event? "The prime minister's decision-making was made without proper coordination, documentation, or preparation..." He didn't hold enough meetings, or he didn't hold the right kind of meetings. He didn't "internalize' the defense establishment's warnings that there would be violent resistance on board. Would it have changed anything if Bibi had…Read More... | 24 Comments
By Jalal Nali The failure of diplomatic efforts aimed at providing Tehran with incentives to suspend its uranium enrichment in exchange for a transparent civilian nuclear program under the supervision of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) supervision has the international community worried that Tehran can no longer be engaged in meaningful negotiations. Suspicions are multiplying exponentially about Iran’s secret agenda of building nuclear weapons, suspicions that were confirmed back in May 2011 after UN inspectors found traces of highly enriched uranium on equipment from research centers linked to the Iranian Revolutionary Guard. Pragmatically-minded Sunni monarchies belonging to the Cooperation…Read More... | 9 Comments
Diplomacy is a tricky thing, especially when it rides the emotional coattails of genocide. Six years ago, then (and still) Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan arrived in Jerusalem on a rare and official visit. He met with Prime Minister Ariel Sharon (now in a coma) and President Moshe Katsav (now in a prison). He also visited Jerusalem's Holocaust memorial, Yad Vashem, where -- on behalf of the first Muslim-majority country to recognize the Holocaust (back in 1949) -- he laid a wreath to show that Ankara, too, honors the six million Jews killed during WWII. But Erdogan's act was as…Read More... | 6 Comments
For the first time since Hamas won elections in 2006, an Arab Islamist party has successfully contested a national election. Its success may serve as an inspiration for other movement, like Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood, to do well in their vote. And though the party is trying to distance itself from either counterparts, many Tunisians are worried it’ll drag them in that direction. They were banned under the authoritative government of then-President Zine el Abidine Ben Ali. But now, Tunisia’s newly-formed Islamist party, Ennahda, has risen like a phoenix, much to the chagrin of many. On Monday night, projections from Sunday’s…Read More... | 4 Comments
Matt Yglesias effectively refutes the argument that Netanyahu lacks a coherent strategy: Netanyahu … described his strategic objectives as including perpetual military control over the Jordan Valley, perpetual Israeli control over East Jerusalem, and the non-emergence of a genuinely sovereign Palestinian polity on whatever scraps of the West Bank remain for Palestinian residents once Jewish settlers have grabbed all the bits they want… it’s clearly Netanyahu’s objective, and he’s pursued it quite doggedly and quite effectively for a long time now. He pursued it successfully as Prime Minister in the 1990s... And now back in the highest office in the…Read More...
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The effects of occupation on minors.
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WATCH: Arab women protest against domestic violence in Israel http://t.co/wvKDEmmJzf
Yearning for Iran: An elegy for my other homeland http://t.co/I74G8T0ZO8
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WATCH: Arab women protest against domestic violence in Israel http://t.co/wvKDEmmJzf @IsraelSocialTV
RT @haaretzcom: #Israeli minister apologizes for accusing #UK of 'disguised anti-Semitism' http://t.co/IwPl27D0fi #BDS