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  • ANALYSIS Missing from mass Israeli rallies: The three contenders for premier

    JERUSALEM, Feb. 16 (JTA) — On the face of it — a paradox. One of the largest outdoor mass gatherings in Israeli history, held at the height of an election campaign — and all three leading candidates for prime minister stayed away. Sunday’s two opposing rallies in Jerusalem — a vast Orthodox prayer demonstration against…

  • NEWS ANALYSIS Calm before the storm: Will Clinton, Netanyahu collide?

    JERUSALEM, Jan. 13 (JTA) — An air of expectation pervaded Israel this week as both the government and opposition looked to the prime minister’s scheduled meeting with President Clinton in Washington on Jan. 20 as the key to future developments in both the domestic and international arenas. Not even a tie Knesset vote on a…

  • NEWS ANALYSIS Could top talk on Lebanon lead to Israeli withdrawal?

    JERUSALEM, March 17 (JTA) — If the Israeli government’s current Lebanon initiative is a public relations gimmick — as its critics insist — it’s working. The international community and the international media is full of discussions of Israel’s desire to withdraw from southern Lebanon. For the government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the focus on…

  • NEWS ANALYSIS Dance troupe controversy spurs fears of cultural war

    JERUSALEM, May 5 (JTA) — Israel”s jubilee celebrations were held under the official slogan, “Together in Pride, Together in Hope,” but Israelis emerged from the festivities even less together than usual. All over the country, people are speaking of a “kulturkampf,” a cultural war — and even a civil war — in the wake of…

  • NEWS ANALYSIS Divine act or coincidence? Israelis ponder sex scandal

    JERUSALEM, Jan. 26 (JTA) — If President Clinton’s problems were in the hands of Israeli public opinion, he wouldn’t have a problem at all. The outpouring of press coverage about Clinton’s alleged affair with former White House intern Monica Lewinsky has reached the news-addicted shores of Israel, where it has provoked widespread sympathy for the…

  • NEWS ANALYSIS Exasperated Albright hints at shift in U.S. peace policy

    JERUSALEM, Feb. 3 (JTA) — U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright”s decision to go public with her frustration over the Middle East peace process represented a change in U.S. policy — at least on the tactical level. But does it presage a policy review on a more substantive level? After meeting last weekend with Israeli…

  • NEWS ANALYSIS Move to change election law blow to heads of Likud, Labor

    JERUSALEM, June 3 (JTA) — Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and opposition leader Ehud Barak, at odds about so much, now find themselves perched on the same shaky limb in the wake of a Knesset move to change the system of electing a prime minister. Last week’s vote to revoke the direct election law —…

  • Back to court and Knesset? The pluralism battle plods on

    JERUSALEM, Feb. 10 (JTA) — Back to the courts and the Knesset? No one is sure where the battle over religious pluralism in Israel is headed now that efforts for resolving the conversion crisis through negotiations apparently have failed. The Reform and Conservative movements are vowing to head back to the Israeli courts to press…

  • BEHIND THE HEADLINES Israelis opposed to withdrawal mount public relations campaign

    JERUSALEM, June 8 (JTA) — Another week, another sigh of relief from the far right of the Israeli political spectrum. Despite a recent flurry of speculation, largely fueled by Israeli officials, the United States let it be known this week that a deal to revive the Israeli- Palestinian peace process is still not in sight….

  • NEWS ANALYSIS Israel weighs ramifications of India’s defiant nuclear tests

    JERUSALEM, May 19 (JTA) — Israeli policymakers are treading warily around the potential pitfalls posed for the Jewish state by India’s nuclear tests. While Israel shares the world’s fears of a dangerous atomic arms race between Indian and Pakistan — fears heightened this week by reports of an imminent nuclear test by Pakistan — there…