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  • Museum’s ‘no’ to Arafat ignites a heated debate

    JERUSALEM, Jan. 19 (JTA) — Two Israeli Holocaust memorial sites have extended invitations to Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasser Arafat — after the Washington museum dedicated to those who perished at the hands of the Nazis said it would not receive Arafat in an official capacity. The position taken by the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum set…

  • Netanyahu taps military officer to head — and overhaul — Mossad

    JERUSALEM, March 4 (JTA) — The newly appointed head of Mossad will have some daunting work ahead of him. Ephraim Halevy, a former deputy head of the foreign intelligence service, will oversee an overhaul and rehabilitation of the organization. Mossad’s vaunted image has been tarnished over the past several months, which saw the bungled attempt…

  • NEWS ANALYSIS Visit by British official reignites Israeli anger

    JERUSALEM, March 17 (JTA) — Fifty years after Great Britain relinquished the Palestine Mandate, the British are back — and once again, Israel wants them to go away. Israeli officials likened this week”s visit by the British foreign secretary to someone throwing a match on a tinderbox. So angry were Israeli officials over Robin Cook”s…

  • Barak angers the Orthodox with bill on draft deferments

    JERUSALEM, May 11 (JTA) — With one fell swoop, Israel’s opposition leader has upped the ante in the debate over draft deferments for yeshiva students and alienated Orthodox politicians he might need in future elections. Labor leader Ehud Barak presented a bill to the Knesset speaker on Monday that would require that more fervently Orthodox…

  • Israelis, Palestinians clash over construction in Old City

    JERUSALEM, May 26 (JTA) — Clashes over building in Jerusalem’s Old City have marred a festive atmosphere marking the anniversary of the city’s reunification. Israeli police clashed with Palestinians demonstrators Tuesday who had torn down one of nine tin shacks erected overnight by members of Ateret Cohanim in the Old City’s Muslim Quarter. Several members…

  • Probe faults head of Mossad for bungled Jordan operation

    JERUSALEM, Feb. 16 (JTA) — A government-appointed committee has cleared Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of responsibility for a failed Mossad operation to kill a Hamas leader in Jordan. The commission said that the prime minister had acted in a “responsible manner, having considered and examined the plans presented to him, from every possible aspect.” The…

  • Israelis, Palestinians resume talks, but thorny issues remain

    JERUSALEM, Feb. 24 (JTA) — Israeli and Palestinian negotiators have returned to the bargaining table once again. But one of the thorniest issues left unresolved from their 1995 Interim Agreement — Israel’s further redeployment from rural West Bank areas — seems unlikely to be resolved soon. In discussions that were expected to continue all week,…

  • Zevulun Hammer, NRP head, dies of cancer at the age of 61

    JERUSALEM, Jan. 20 (JTA) — Zevulun Hammer, described as an embodiment of the religious Zionist movement, died Tuesday morning of cancer. He was 61. Hammer, the leader of the National Religious Party and Israel’s deputy prime minister and education minister, was remembered across Israel’s political spectrum as a dedicated public servant. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu,…

  • Israel steps up efforts to gain Pollard’s release

    JERUSALEM, March 9 (JTA) — Israel may be on the verge of making a dramatic decision in the case of Jonathan Pollard. Cabinet Secretary Danny Naveh said the government would step up efforts to free Pollard from a U.S. prison, but has not yet decided whether to recognize him as an Israeli agent. His comments…

  • NEWS ANALYSIS Gingrich visit does little to alter political realities

    JERUSALEM, May 27 (JTA) — The rhetoric that emerged from a visit to Israel this week by an American congressional delegation did little to alter the political realities of the peace process. To be sure, the comments by U.S. House Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-Ga.) and others provided a morale boost for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin…