Egypt’s Diplomatic Row Over Jon Stewart

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. Following rocket fire, Israel launches first airstrikes on Gaza since the November war. More below.

2. Yesterday, I noted Jon Stewart vs. Mohammed Morsi over the arrest of Egyptian satirist Bassem Youssef. The video now became a diplomatic incident when the US embassy in Cairo tweeted it. Morsi’s office tweeted back. For more details and links, see The Lede. Just before publishing this roundup, the embassy’s Twitter account was deleted.

Morsi tweet

3. If the UN’s chief atomic watchdog publicly frets that Iran’s probably working on a nuclear weapon program, shouldn’t the world be a little more worried too?

4. News You Might Have Missed Over Passover: For a roundup of everything you need to quickly catch up on the week’s coverage of Israel and the Mideast, don’t miss yesterday’s Israel Daily News Stream.

5. 5 Signs of Sinking Palestinian Press Freedom: Mahmoud Abbas and Hamas are assaulting press freedom and the public’s right to know — with some media complicity.

Palestinian press freedom under attack

6. Some remarkable botches in Big Media’s handling of Gaza’s escalating situation:

7. The Hypocrisy of a Black Miss Israel?: A feminist writer with an axe to grind with Israel negates Ethiopian accomplishments.

Israel and the Palestinians

Following Gaza rocket fire, the IDF launched the first air strikes on Gaza since the November war. Palestinians followed with more rocket fire. See YNet and Times of Israel coverage.

Harsh commentaries denounce the PA for cynically using prisoner Maysara Abu Hamdiya’s death to keep up populist struggle against Israel and for self-defeating grandstanding.

Dome of the Rock

Mahmoud Abbas and Jordan’s King Abdullah signed an agreement to coordinate policy on Jerusalem and to ostensibly “protect holy sites.” According to the JTA:

The agreement is also designed to stop Israeli attempts to “Judaize” Jerusalem, according to a statement released Sunday in Amman.

Abbas denied the deal had anything to do with the Obama visit. And Leo Rennert heaps scorn on the pact:

Somehow it escaped the attention of Abbas and King Abdullah that, if they really were sincere about protecting all sacred sites in Jerusalem, the only actually vulnerable shrines in Jerusalem and adjoining West Bank are Jewish ones.

As if to underscore this fact, while Abbas and King Abdullah were huddling in Amman to meet nonexistent threats to Christian and Muslim shrines, Palestinian youths were hurling rocks at Israeli visitors on Temple Mount. The stone-throwing barrage failed in its objective to deny Jews access to Judaism’s holiest site. Israeli police saw to that.

A Palestinian stone-thrower was convicted of  murder: the rock Wa’al al-Araji threw at an Israeli car caused Asher Palmer to lose control of the vehicle, killing himself and and his one year-old son in 2011. According to the Times of Israel:

The decision was unusual in that the Military Advocate generally does not seek a murder charge against stone-throwing Palestinians, even when their actions cause fatalities. However, the panel of three judges said that, in this particular case, there could be no doubt that the accused intended to kill and had practiced perpetrating similar — although less deadly — attacks in the past.

On the next page:

  • John Kerry’s returning to Israel this week. What’s up his sleeve?
  • Israel braces for a “potentially crippling” cyberattack.
  • How many Israeli officials does it take to greet a foreign dignitary?

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