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.Hamas is training its own diplomatic corps. Till now, the PLO was the sole representative body of the Palestinian people. Reuters says the move will deepen the Hamas/Fatah divide:
Hamas officials seemed keen to play down the scheme to matriculate envoys from its mostly makeshift and short-staffed foreign ministry. They said they hoped a deal with Fatah could remove any need to deploy Hamas diplomats, but planned to have a corps of envoys ready should reconciliation prove impossible.
2. Palestinian social protests continue. Haaretz reports that another Palestinian tried to light himself on fire in Ramallah:
Hasan Qahwaji’s attempt to set himself on fire was the third such attempt in the territories of the last week . . .
Qahwaji claimed that he had asked the PA to help him finance medical treatment for his daughter, but that it had refused. PA President Mahmoud Abbas’ office denied this . . .
3. Big news of the day was the sturm und drang over Jerusalem at the Democratic National Conventional. Aaron David Miller’s measured reaction at CNN suffices:
[W]hat’s so curious about the flap is that the Jerusalem issue is less relevant today than ever. There are no prospects for reviving serious Israeli-Palestinian negotiations. Taking positions on Jerusalem is a thought experiment now.
Israel and the Palestinians
• The Hamas response to Hanan Ashrawi’s denial of Jewish refugees ain’t surprising:
• In a Jerusalem Post op-ed, Ari Briggs says the Bedouins are learning from the “tower and stockade” settlements from Israel’s pre-state days. Something to think about when seeing media accounts of Bedouin structures being demolished, and the non-governmental organizations who are the primary sources of info:
Unlike the case of Kfar Hittim, no Beduin National Fund purchased the land. The residents just took it. Whether it is privately owned Jewish land, as in the case of Al Zarnoog, or Bir El Daj, built on JNF lands or state lands, doesn’t matter to them.
The Beduin understand that their communities must also have means of defense, but their “Tower & Stockade” is not physical. It’s virtual, but very effective.
Their protective “Stockade” consists of NGOs such as the Negev Coexistence Forum (NCF), Adalah, ACRI and the like. Their virtual Towers are the New Israel Fund (NIF), the EU and the UN, all of which are extremely well-funded and focused on protecting the “rights” of the Beduin to the lands on which they have built illegally.
• Worth reading: Professor Nino Levy discusses Israel’s media war with Israel Defense.