Ramallah – Palestinian Authority de facto capital city – quiet during Eid

As Ramallah prepared for the Eid al-Adha (Muslim holiday), boxes of oranges appeared along the sidewalks and streets outside shops selling fruits and vegetables.  The oranges also ripened on trees planted years ago, here and there in small private yards around individual stone houses in central Ramallah, a colorful contrast to their deep green leav...

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Remains of Alec Collett found in Lebanon's Bekaa Valley

This is an ugly and traumatic story. Alec Collett, a former colleague accredited as a journalist at UNHQ/NY in the early to mid-1980s, was one of those internationals kidnapped during the long Lebanese civil war.  Alec was taken from a car near Beirut airport in March  1985, while on a temporary assignment for UNRWA in […]

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More news: IDF schedules 213 truckloads of basic goods to go to Gaza today

This, Madame Secretary [Hilary Clinton], is positive reinforcement:  when the IDF, exceptionally, schedules over 200 truckloads of what they call “humanitarian aid” — really, the most basic goods — to enter Gaza, it is worth writing about. This is the third time in the past two weeks that we’ve had such an astonishing ...

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217 "humanitarian" truckloads of goods to be passed into Gaza today

This is news. For months, the Israeli Ministry of Defense’s “Coordinator of [Israeli] Government Activities in the Territories” or COGAT, has been putting Gazans on a very strict “diet”. Only when a high-level American delegation was in town, or maybe Tony Blair, were there even 100 to a max of 112 or so truckloads wor...

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Politics as usual in Ramallah this weekend

The Jerusalem Post has a story today informing us that a report presented to members of the Israeli Knesset last Wednesday, and “compiled by the MACRO Center for Political Economics as part of its Position Papers on Social, Economic and Political Issues distributed to MKs and ministers on a biweekly basis to give them an […]

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Abu Mazen's manoeuvers

If the Palestinians like setting records for publication in the Guiness Book of World Records, they could add to their list — the world’s biggest knafeh (a sweet dessert made from shredded wheat stuffed with cheese, soaked in a sugary syrup, and garnished with chopped pistachios) in Nablus; the world’s longest or “largest...

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