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Today’s Top Stories
1. Loads of commentary on Thursday’s UN statehood vote. See it all below.
2. Howard Zwier blasts back at the Sydney Morning Herald for this disgusting Michael Leunig cartoon.
After taking apart the implicit Israel-Nazi comparison based on Pastor Martin Niemoller’s original statement, Zweir writes:
However the cartoon is also clever, because the reaction of the Jewish community as articulated in the Anti-Defamation Commission media release is in fact encapsulated within the cartoon. As Leunig said, ”bitterness and spiteful condemnations would follow”, duly obliged by Dr Abramovich in his comments.
And so the Jewish community has been wedged . . .
Perhaps, in the end, we might ask whether the cartoon is really about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, or in fact about the conflict between the Jewish community and Leunig. It’s all a question of perception and interpretation – the power of the cartoon.
3. The US finally set a deadline for Iran to cooperate with the IAEA. Reuters writes:
“If by March Iran has not begun substantive cooperation with the IAEA, the United States . . . would urge the board to consider reporting this lack of progress to the U.N. Security Council,” Wood said, according to a copy of his statement.
Israel and the Palestinians
The 193-member U.N. body voted 138 to 9, with 41 abstentions, to recognize Palestine as a “non-member observer state,” a status that falls well short of independence but provides Palestinians with limited privileges as a state, including the right to join the International Criminal Court and other international treaty bodies.
• Ambassador Ron Prosor talked to CNN about the statehood vote and Mahmoud Abbas’s speech.
• Israel to move forward with 3,000 housing units in eastern Jerusalem and a patch of land between the capital and Maale Adumim. But despite Big Media’s hype, E1 doesn’t cut the West Bank in two.
• Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz said he won’t transfer tax funds to the PA. The Jerusalem Post writes:
Steinitz said he would “use the funds to offset the PA’s electricity debts,” Channel 10 reported.
• Pathetic UN fail on Twitter. Spot the typo that forced the UN to remove this tweet and post a corrective tweet. Nowadays, people don’t wag their tongues without screengrabs. More backstory at Forbes, Poynter, and the Toronto Star.
• What possessed the Czech Republic, Panama, and four Pacific island countries to join Israel, the US and Canada, in voting against Palestinian statehood? The Washington Post looks at this nine-state “coalition of the opposing.”
• Nabil Shaath has a big time credibility problem says Elliott Abrams. It not only explains why the PA’s top negotiator was frozen out of Washington for years, but also the sad state of Palestinian leadership and why the chances of peace are slimmer than ever.
• Washington Post: Support for Hamas fading as Gazans begin to ask what the war accomplished.
• Boycott shmoycott. The NY Times reports that Singapore and South Korea are already in talks with Israel to purchase an Iron Dome system.