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Today’s Top Stories
1. The first buyers of natural gas from Israel’s offshore reserves are none other than the Palestinians. We’re talking about a $1.2 billion contract to supply a new West Bank power plant for 20 years. This is sure to irritate the BDS movement abroad and the Palestinian anti-normalization campaign. More at the Times of Israel and Haaretz.
2. Khaled Abu Toameh wonders why Israeli Arab leaders are so vociferously opposed to Israel transferring a number of Arab towns to a future Palestinian state:
But what the Arab Knesset members are not saying openly is that they do not want to wake up in the morning and discover that they are citizens of a Palestinian state. It is much easier for them to accuse Israel of racism than to admit that they do not want to be part of a Palestinian state . . . .
If the Arab Knesset members are so worried about becoming citizens of a Palestinian state, they should be working toward integration into, and not separation from, Israel, and listening more to their constituents rather than the voices of Fatah and Hamas.
3. A delegation of provosts from US universities arrived in Israel to look into opportunities for for academic partnership and collaboration. It’s certainly a thumb in the eye of to the American Studies Association and its boycott-Israel rabble. More at the Jerusalem Post.
Israel and the Palestinians
• An expert suggests the PLO used the Czech Republic as a transit point for a larger weapons smuggling operation. The Jerusalem Post writes:
“Maybe the affair in question involves a well organized weapons and explosives distribution network, including the weapons’ further recipients,” Sedivy was quoted as saying.
• Over the weekend, the Wall St. Journal reported that Hezbollah’s smuggling advanced missile systems from Syria to Lebanon. Foreign Policy and the Jerusalem Post elaborated on the threat the Russian-made Yakhont missiles pose to Israel.
• Over at the Baltimore Sun, radio personality Jay Bernstein calls on my alma mater, the U. of Maryland-Baltimore County, to withdraw its membership from the ASA. UMBC already denounced the boycott. Bernstein writes:
In addition to withdrawing from the ASA, the leadership of UMBC, as well as the leaders of every publicly-financed institution that forms the University System of Maryland, should take appropriate measures to ensure that as long as the academic boycott of Israel remains in place, not one penny of university funds is used to finance any ASA activities, such as faculty membership in the ASA or faculty travel to ASA events.
• Worth reading: Sydney Morning Herald columnist Paul Sheehan nails the relationship between the Arab Spring and the peace process.
• Worth reading. Returning to Jordan is too dangerous, and this young man now living in Israel wants to serve in the IDF. Will he?
• For more commentary/analysis, see the Begin-Sadat Center (winning the BDS battle), Yossi Beilin (the framework agreement will go nowhere), and Charleston Post & Courier (thumbs to Kerry’s peace efforts),
(Image of Tibi via YouTube/MKAhmadTibi)
For more, see yesterday’s Israel Daily News Stream.