Everything you need to know about today’s coverage of Israel and the Mideast. Join the Israel Daily News Stream on Facebook.
Today’s Top Stories
1. Is the BDS movement gearing up for prime time? According to Nabil Shaath, the Palestinians will consider “going the South African way” and push for a full boycott of Israel if peace talks fail. The Financial Times (click via Google News) writes:
Mr Abbas’ official stance now is to support a boycott of Jewish settlements, rather than a blanket boycott of Israel, a move that could invite Israelis to retaliate by withholding tax revenues or work permits from the Palestinians.
“If everything falls apart, it’s the only logical thing to do,” he said of the boycott. “I know it’s going to cost us, but we are not going back to armed struggle, so the only thing to do would be a boycott and an international campaign.”
See HonestReporting’s response to this development: Fighting BDS – Is BDS About to Go Mainstream?
By the way, Gulf News republished this, substituting the word “settlements” for “colonies.” The Dubai-based paper properly credited the FT and reporters John Reed and John Thornhill, so I wonder how they all feel about Gulf News putting words in their mouths.
2. Bogged down in Syria, Hezbollah sent reassurances to Israel that it had no plans to heat up the Israeli-Lebanese border last year. That’s according to the transcripts of a leaked Syrian document obtained by Asharq Al-Awsat.
According to Bogdanov, Nasrallah told him: “You can tell the Israelis that Lebanon’s southern borders are the safest place in the world because all of our attention is focused on what is happening in Syria,” confirming that Hezbollah “does not harbor any intention of taking any action against Israel.”
4.AP Questions Barghouti’s Terror Conviction: Wire service questions the credibility of Israeli justice.
Israel and the Palestinians
• Congressman Ted Poe slams PA stipends to terrorists. The Texas representative writes in a Jerusalem Post op-ed.
When a Palestinian Arab terrorist murders an Israeli or an American in Israel, they can wind up receiving a generous salary, in excess of $40,000 a year, for their crime. And if you are a US taxpayer, you are footing part of the tab . . .
Even more galling, some of these salaried PA terrorists have killed and maimed US citizens! What is to be done? First and foremost, we need to stop subsidizing Palestinian Arab terrorists. We can start by halting all funding to the PA until they abolish the Law of the Prisoner.
• Today’s lead screed goes to The Herald of Scotland, where editor David Pratt manages to bash Israel by tying together the Crimean crisis, Scottish independence, and George Galloway with all the talking points presumably fed to him by Ali Abunimah.
• For more commentary/analysis, see Jeffrey Goldberg (Obama treats Bibi worse than Putin), Melanie Phillips (why Israelis are wary of the US and UK roles in the peace process), Jonathan Tobin (Obama’s setting up Israel to take the blame), Michael Curtis (are all boycotters of Israel anti-Semitic?), and Amos Harel (Israel’s message to Assad over border blast).
Rest O’ the Roundup
• According to Haaretz, Israel allocated $2.9 billion to the army to prepare a possible strike on Iran this year.
• Moscow suggested it might throw its support behind Iran in the nuclear talks if the West follows through with sanctions against Russia’s annexation of Crimea.
• I’m trying to decide what — if anything — this means for Big Media datelines from other disputed territories in the news like, say, the West Bank.
There’s a similar battle raging at Wikipedia, where editors tend to compromise by labeling Western Sahara, Tibet, Taiwan as “disputed territories.” More on that at the Washington Post.
For more, see yesterday’s Israel Daily News Stream.