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  • Appointment of Israeli Arab creates political controversy

    JERUSALEM, Jan. 25 (JTA) — When an Israeli Arab was appointed to a senior municipal post in Haifa, the move ignited a controversy between the coalition partners in the Israeli port city’s government. It also illuminated the struggle among Israeli Arabs for greater political power. The incident comes as a recent survey, conducted by Elie…

  • BEHIND THE HEADLINES Pakistan’s nuclear capacity worries Israel, thrills Muslims

    JERUSALEM, June 2 (JTA) — What’s wrong with Pakistan’s nuclear capability? Only that it’s not Iranian, according to one Palestinian school of thought. While Israeli officials are reacting with dismay at the possibility that Pakistan’s recent nuclear tests could lead to a Muslim nation in possession of the nuclear bomb, many Palestinians received news of…

  • BEHIND THE HEADLINES Israeli Arab’s water project may aid regional cooperation

    SAKHNIN, Israel, March 23 (JTA)— As the driver of a sewage tanker emptied its contents into a pond, an older man, visibly angry, appeared among the olive trees. “What’s with all this sewage water contaminating my olives?” shouted Rashid Abu-Raya, waving his fists at the sewage container. “There is no law and no justice.” Hussein…

  • BEHIND THE HEADLINES Popular Israeli products could suffer from boycott

    JERUSALEM, May 26 (JTA) — Ahava cosmetics are among the popular Israeli products that are at the heart of a growing dispute between Europe and the Jewish state. Ahava products, which are sold in stores around the world, are produced in Mitzpeh Shalem, a West Bank settlement. Since they are not produced within Israel’s pre-1967…

  • NEWS ANALYSIS Arab disunity thwarts Arafat quest for ‘cooperation’ summit

    JERUSALEM, June 8 (JTA)—Yasser Arafat is not giving up. As the faltering Middle East peace process continues its up-and-down course, the chairman of the Palestinian Authority is pursuing his grand tour of the Arab world, trying to convince fellow Arabs to unite for a summit. Arab leaders must come together “not just to face the…

  • BEHIND THE HEADLINES Will Palestinians declare independent state next year?

    JERUSALEM, May 5 (JTA) — As Israel celebrated its 50th anniversary, Yasser Arafat vowed that in a year the Palestinians would celebrate their own independence. The chairman of the Palestinian Authority reiterated publicly that on May 4, 1999, the state of Palestine would be proclaimed — with or without Israel’s consent. In response, Prime Minister…

  • BEHIND THE HEADLINES Hamas unwilling to join new Palestinian Cabinet

    JERUSALEM, June 16 (JTA) — Yasser Arafat is seeking a new partner, but the man he is courting is playing hard to get. Early this week, the chairman of the Palestinian Authority invited Hamas to join his Cabinet as part of a reshuffle. The offer came on the eve of a Palestinian Legislative Council session…

  • NEWS ANALYSIS Confrontation in West Bank highlights tension over settlers

    JERUSALEM, April 21 (JTA) — It could have been a scene out of the American Wild West: Jewish settlers and Arab shepherds confronting each other violently this week in the Hebron hills over a piece of land. Both the settlers and shepherds made the all-too-familiar claim: This West Bank land is my land, and mine…

  • BEHIND THE HEADLINES Palestinians mark jubilee with ceremony of ‘disaster

    JERUSALEM, Feb. 17 (JTA) — Palestinians are looking upon Israel’s jubilee year with despair. Had the political circumstances been different, the leadership may not have placed the “nakba,” the Arabic word for disaster, at the top of the public agenda. But recent events have ripened the sour feelings among Palestinians: * The peace process is…

  • BEHIND THE HEADLINES Raising hopes for tourism, a casino rises in biblical Jericho

    JERICHO, West Bank, June 29 (JTA) — Two giant buildings grow out of the arid terrain near this ancient town. Tall, newly planted palm trees flank the entrance to the complex. These new additions to the landscape presage the opening of a casino scheduled to open here this fall — the first legal gambling house…