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  • NEWS ANALYSIS Israelis wary as tensions among Palestinians escalate

    JERUSALEM, April 13 (JTA) — Israelis are watching the escalating tensions between the Palestinian Authority and Islamic militants with apprehension and uncertainty, wondering how the rift will spill over. On one hand, Israeli citizens remain on heightened alert for terrorist attacks after the fundamentalist group Hamas issued threats last week against Israeli targets. At the…

  • NEWS ANALYSIS U.S. standing in Arab world may influence peace process

    JERUSALEM, March 2 (JTA) — With the U.S.-Iraq confrontation off the front burner, Israel and the Palestinians are busily preparing for a new bout of American diplomacy. A new peacemaking initiative was widely anticipated in the aftermath of a showdown with Iraq. Pundits predicted that the United States, unpopular and resented in large parts of…

  • NEWS ANALYSIS Showdown in Israel likely in wake of compromise plan

    JERUSALEM, March 25 (JTA) — Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu appears headed for a showdown with his coalition — yet again. The likelihood of a confrontation became apparent this week when Israeli officials confirmed a New York Times report that Israel had presented to the U.S. administration a compromise proposal regarding further Israeli withdrawals from the…

  • NEWS ANALYSIS Netanyahu strives to satisfy competing U.S., Israeli demands

    JERUSALEM, May 12 (JTA) — The space between a rock and a hard place would represent for Benjamin Netanyahu a veritable paradise compared to his current predicament — stuck between Madeleine Albright and Ariel Sharon. The Israeli prime minister, staring at the daunting prospect of a full-scale confrontation with the Clinton administration, must have been…

  • THE ROAD TO ISRAEL’S ELECTIONS Mordechai makes clear appeal to Orthodox voters in campaign

    JERUSALEM, Feb. 1 (JTA) — “Let us walk the path of Maimonides,” Yitzhak Mordechai urged a throng of cheering followers. “Let us walk the center path.” The leader of the new, as-yet unnamed centrist party has wasted little time getting into the thick of campaigning — and in the process he has already begun clothing…

  • NEWS ANALYSIS Netanyahu faces new hurdles with opposition from Mordechai

    JERUSALEM, Jan. 25 (JTA) — Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has come out swinging against his former defense minister, but behind the premier’s confident veneer lurks a fear that Yitzhak Mordechai will be a formidable opponent in the race for prime minister. Netanyahu knows there were two voting blocs that led to his victory in the…

  • NEWS ANALYSIS Latest political scandal fuels divisiveness in Israeli society

    JERUSALEM, Jan. 18 (JTA) — An obscure drug trial that took place 17 years ago has become the focus of a public storm that is sweeping Israel with a peculiar ferocity. Two weeks ago, few Israelis had heard of Yechiem Ohana, a Tiberias businessman who was jailed for 30 months in the early 1980s for…

  • NEWS ANALYSIS Israel grapples with free speech after death threat mars campaign

    JERUSALEM, Jan. 11 (JTA) — As Israel plunges into an election campaign, the country is struggling to find the right balance between being a boisterous democracy and a society still traumatized by the 1995 assassination of Yitzhak Rabin. Within days after campaigning began, a debate welled up over the acceptable limits of public discourse as…

  • NEWS ANALYSIS Large parties will be losers in Israel’s two-ballot election

    JERUSALEM, Jan. 5 (JTA) — In the wake of the Knesset’s final approval this week of a bill to dissolve itself and call for new elections in May, many political observers here are predicting a chaotic and fragmented new legislature reminiscent of Italy in its worst postwar instability. Some observers are warning, too, that the…

  • NEWS ANALYSIS Netanyahu faces uphill fight, with adversaries on left, right

    JERUSALEM, Dec. 29 (JTA) — Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, forced to accede to early elections, embarked this week on a daunting struggle to recapture the popular and political appeal that catapulted him to the national leadership less than three years ago. The struggle will be long: Netanyahu and the Labor Party leader, Ehud Barak, agreed…