Wednesday, April 25, 2007


The Political Economy of Syria Under Bashar Al-Assad - Nimrod Raphaeli (MEMRI)
Al Hayat Can Syria and Israel Make Peace? Patrick Seale - Spurred on by Bill Clinton, Syria and Israel came very close to a peace agreement in 2000. But Ehud Barak, Israel's prime minister at the time, threw away the chance. He didn't think the Israeli public would swallow the prospect of Syrians swimming and fishing in the north-eastern corner of Lake Tiberias.
Apathy grows in Syria’s one-party poll Even Syria’s government-controlled Tishreen newspaper is reporting that it can see little enthusiasm for the forthcoming elections to the people’s assembly.
Baath Time in Syria The EconomistThe result of the Syrian parliamentary election, to be held on April 22nd, is not in doubt, as the constitution dictates that a front led by the Baath party must hold two-thirds of the 250 seats. The main interest in the exercise will be the size of the turnout and whether any critics of the regime of Syria's president, Bashar al-Assad, manage to win some of the 83 seats reserved for independents.
UPI Analysis: Olmert tries to calm Syria
Defense Secretary Gates Cites Concerns About Syria, Iran
Olmert tells Gates at end of lightning visit: Israel has no plans to attack Syria
Ha’aretz Schiff Israel: Syria readying for war
The next war, Israel, Syria and Kurds
Yedioth Ahronoth New Golan Heights solution Campaign: MK Ayalon will return Golan to Syria in exchange for leasing agreement if elected PM
Newsweek Syria’s Suddenly Popular Man in Washington
Washington Times Syrian agrees to Rice meeting Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Muallem said yesterday he would "gladly" meet Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice at an upcoming Iraq conference, one of several steps Syria indicated it would take to soothe tensions in the Middle East.
Forward Syrian Dissidents See Prospects Killed by Bloodbath in Iraq (April 20) When Syrians head to the polls this week to elect a new parliament, Iraq will be on their minds — but not in the way that the Bush administration envisioned four years ago, when it held high hopes that toppling Saddam Hussein would set off a democratic domino effect that would unseat the region’s authoritarian rulers
Syria's 'guests'Iraqis spurn sectarianism after fleeing war in Baghdad
United States Calls Syrian Elections a Missed Opportunity
MEMRI Apr 20 IA# 345 - Criticism of the Upcoming Syrian Parliamentary Elections in the Official Syrian Press and Among the Syrian Opposition
SyriaComment Syrians at the Polls: To Vote - Yes or No
Weekly Standard Why Syrian Elections Matter . . . even though they aren't much of a horserace. by David Schenker
Elections Without Politics in Syria By: Omayma Abdel-Latif The Daily Star Apart from some posters and banners scattered across the streets of Damascus announcing parliamentary elections yesterday and today, there were few signs in Syria of the sort of election fever seen in some Arab countries recently.
DEBKAfile Exclusive: A large, high-ranking Syrian delegation of 40 generals on secret mission to Tehran In Syria, choice is for shoppers, not voters

Dore Gold of JCPA Iran, Hizbullah, Hamas and the Global Jihad:A New Conflict Paradigm for the West
U.S. Prepared To Boost Reconstruction Aid for Lebanon
Will Congress Meet With Lebanese Parliamentarians Allied With Hezbollah?
Israel's Strategic Threat By: Neve Gordon The Nation During the past few months, political activists and members of the Palestinian intellectual elite within Israel, all of whom are Israeli citizens, have drafted four documents that articulate how they conceive the state's future. The underlying assumption of all of these documents is that as long as Israel is defined as a Jewish state, its laws will always fall short of basic democratic principles and, more particularly, the right of all its citizens to full equality.
Reviving the Quartet Volker Perthes Following the formation of a Palestinian unity government and the Arab League summit it is time for the Middle East Quartet to get into action.
Flexibility and Reciprocity Are Key to Israeli-Palestinian Peace By: Herbert C. Kelman The Daily StarAn early return to the Middle East negotiating table is not a favor to the Palestinians, but an urgent requirement for protecting the vital interests of both Palestinians and Israelis
To Hamas, for Independence DayThe Jews and the Palestinians are now in the 60th year of their War of Independence, and it is not going well for either side. For all their struggle, the Palestinians are now farther from achieving statehood than they have been in years. For all our independence, we have no idea, nor any consensus, on where our country ends and where the Arab world begins.
Jerusalem Post International Community Increases Aid to Palestinians as Hamas Prepares for War - Editorial
David Hornick Israel’s Next War.
The Strategic Challenge of Gaza - Maj.-Gen. Yoav Galant (Institute for Contemporary Affairs-Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs)

Iraq and the Kurds: Resolving the Kirkuk Crisis International Crisis Group
Washington Post Rice on The Right Tracks By David Ignatius, Isolation hasn't worked, and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is now charting the pathways out.
Leading Democrat in Senate Tells Reporters, ‘This War Is Lost’
The Hobbesian Hell of Iraq by Larry C. Johnson
The Economist The occupation of Iraq It might have been otherwise
Christian Science Monitor Iraq falling behind on meeting 'benchmarks' The US buildup has not been matched by an equal uptick in Iraqi political action.
McClatchy Training Iraqi troops no longer driving force in U.S. policy By Nancy A. Youssef Military planners have abandoned the idea that standing up Iraqi troops will enable American soldiers to start coming home soon and now believe that U.S. troops will have to defeat the insurgents and secure control of troubled provinces.
Financial Times COMMENT: America's dismal debate brings little hope of peace in Iraq Just as Bush refuses to admit the war is lost, so his opponents decline to contemplate what it means to admit defeat, says Philip Stephens.
Daily Star Cautious optimism after the fall of an illegitimate Iraqi order By Fouad Ajami
Our Enemy's Enemy By: Marc Lynch The American ProspectFar from vindicating the American escalation strategy in Iraq, recent tensions between insurgent factions and al-Qaeda bolster the case for withdrawal.
The 'Southern Azerbaijan' Problem By: Karl Rahder ISN Security Watch Azeris make up roughly 24 percent of Iran's population and Tehran is worried about just whose side they are on as rumors of US infiltration are taken seriously, complicating Azerbaijan's own foreign policy outlook.
Schiff The victory won't be American The growing Iranian influence in a Shi?ite-controlled Iraq could be detrimental to Israel, and the same holds true for a Shi'ite Iraqi pact with Hezbollah.
Dennis Ross Squeeze Play: Approach Tehran with Sticks, Not Carrots

FPIF Shi ite vs. Sunni?
Gates: U.S. to sell smart bombs to Saudi Arabia Israel argues presence of such weapons in Arab countries undermines its military edge in Mideast.
PINR "Intelligence Brief: U.S. Defense Secretary Pays Visit to Arab Allies" Full text of report

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