Author Archives: Pesach Benson

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Ayatollah’s Health Sparks Talk of Succession

Ayatollah’s Health Sparks Talk of Succession

Today’s Top Stories 1. Images of Iran’s hospitalized supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei are sparking speculation over his successor as well as an unprecedented Iranian media blitz. The 75-year-old Khamenei recently underwent prostate surgery. Reuters explains: “The clergy are looking for somebody to guarantee the interests of the clergy. The Revolutionary Guards are looking for

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“Settlement Crisis” Upstages Summit

Today’s Top Stories 1. Prime Minister Netanyahu visited President Obama to discuss Mideast peace, Iran, and ISIS. Once again, the summit was upstaged by “settlement crisis” manufactured by Peace Now (more on that below) over a week-old tender of 2,610 Israeli housing units in eastern Jerusalem. Unhappy White House officials told the Jerusalem Post they

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Secret Back-Channel Tightens Israel-PA Cooperation

Today’s Top Stories 1. Interesting YNet scoop: An unidentified senior Israeli official has been secretly meeting with Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah “to tighten cooperation and coordination” on getting Gaza back on its feet. 2. In its fight against ISIS, the White House lifted rules on airstrikes meant to protect civilians. A White House statement

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Amira Hass: When Only Journalists We Like are Welcome

What’s wrong with this picture? Israeli journalist Amira Hass was covering a conference at Bir Zeit University. She was perfectly up front with the Palestinian student organizers helping run the event, registering that she was from Haaretz. Hass says she has covered events and interviewed Palestinians at the Ramallah campus for 20 years, and has

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Did Iran Assassinate Its Own Nuclear Scientist and Blame Israel?

Today’s Top Stories 1. An Iranian nuclear physicist killed in 2007 was murdered by the Revolutionary Guard, not Israel. That’s what the scientist’s sister tells The Media Line: When Iranian scientist Dr. Ardeshir Hosseinpour was killed in February 2007, the cause of death was reported to be “gassing” and most presumed the act was carried out

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Palestinians Gauging UN Support for Statehood

Today’s Top Stories 1. According to Haaretz, Palestinian diplomats gauging support for statehood know it won’t get past the UN Security Council. Despite US and British opposition, the Palestinians seek a symbolic majority of council members. 2. An Egyptian activist who has advocated for the assassination of Israeli leaders was nominated for the EU’s prestigious

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British Intelligence in Secret Contact With Assad?

Today’s Top Stories 1. Ceasefire talks between Israel and Hamas kicked off for a few hours in Cairo, then adjourned until “late October” for a crowded month of Jewish and Muslim holidays. The Jewish New Year, followed by the Day Atonement and the week-long festival of Sukkot, coincides with the Muslim pilgrimages to Mecca culminating

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Iran Seeks Nuclear Flexibility For Help Against ISIS

Today’s Top Stories 1. Palestinian-Jordanian journalist Mudar Zahran discussed the Gaza war with regular Palestinians. Everyone was fearful of Hamas and spoke anonymously about the extent the general population was used as a human shield. The whole story’s worth reading; this snippet in particular caught my eye: One, a renowned Gazan academic, who spoke on

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Jihadis Divided Over Alan Henning Abduction?

Today’s Top Stories 1. The UN says it brokered a deal between Israel and the PA to rebuild Gaza. The New York Times was the only paper I saw stressing the agreement is temporary. If the agreement unravels down the road, what would you think if all you knew was what you saw in today’s BBC

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UN Peacekeepers Evacuate Syria

Today’s Top Stories 1. UN peacekeepers monitoring the Israeli-Syrian border withdrew from their positions on the Syrian side, evacuating to Israel. Does the inability of the blue-helmet forces to work both sides of the border essentially spell the end of their mission? CNN coverage. 2. UN envoy Robert Serry threw a lifeline to Hamas: UN: Palestinian

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