Some background on the Shebaa Farms

Some interesting details on the Shebaa Farms issue from Nicholas Blanford in The National, an English-language paper published in Abu Dhabi : “Securing the liberation of the Shebaa Farms has been a cornerstone of Fouad Siniora’s diplomacy since 2005 when he headed his first government. Mr Siniora said he believes that an Israeli withdrawal fr...

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A "Prague Spring" in the Middle East?

Peace appears to be breaking out all over, after one of the gloomiest recent periods in the region, during which speculation about imminent war has been nearly non-stop . The truce or calm (“tahdiya”) between Israel and Hamas – which the parties say they hope will last at least an initial six months — started […]

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Winograd Committee final report

“A semi-military organization of a few thousand men resisted, for a few weeks, the strongest army in the Middle East, which enjoyed full air superiority and size and technology advantages. The barrage of rockets aimed at Israel’s civilian population lasted throughout the war, and the IDF did not provide an effective response to it. The ...

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UN waffling as Israel hedges the status of Shebaa Farms

Aluf Benn reported in Haaretz last week that: “The United Nations cartographer Miklos Pinter is in Israel this week to move ahead on the specifics of marking the controversial boundaries of the Shaba Farms on the slopes of Mount Hermon, government sources in Jerusalem said. Pinter said a few weeks ago that based on maps […]

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Of course the UN knew about the Iraqi chemicals they brought to NYC

Nobody knew what else to do, apparently — and they were absolutely unwilling to take any initiative other than to bring vials of Iraqi chemical weapons to NYC. They stored them in a drawer at UNHQ/NY. Some people knew about this, and talked about it in scandalized tones with family and friends. But they did […]

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Israel announces stand-down in tension with Syria

Last summer’s Israeli invasion of Lebanon has provoked year-long speculation about a repeat performance this year. Some commentators have recently said that summer lasts a few more months here than in other places of the world, so, they said, the danger still persists. Today, Israel announced that it is moving its troops — at least, [&h...

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SG's letter to the Security Council on Lebanon

Here are some excerpts from the SG’s Report S/2006/933, Letter dated 1 December 2006 from the Secretary-General addressed to the President of the Security Council: “I have the honour to submit a factual update to my report of 12 September 2006 on the implementation of Security Council resolution 1701 (2006)(S/2006/780), in particular on...

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UN hopes Israel will withdraw from Lebanon

That means, of course, that Israel has not completed its withdrawal from Lebanon.   Intensive discussions have been going on for weeks.  The UNIFIL (UN Interim Force in Lebanon – reinforced) Commander, Major-General Alain Pellegrini, met again today with “senior representatives” of the Israeli Defense Forces and of the Lebane...

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