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November 23, 2007

Annapolis - 'Anchors Away!', Again

Annapolis, home of the U.S. Naval Academy, is the site of the latest American sponsored attempt to relaunch the stalled Israeli-Palestinian peace talks. Hosted by President George W. Bush, representatives of many Arab states will be lending some much needed support to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. But what can realistically be expected after Hamas, the radical Islamist movement which vows to destroy Israel, was elected to power and then expelled Abbas and his moderate cohorts from the Gaza Strip in a bloody coup last June? IsraCast views Annapolis as an American salvage operation that will try to keep the Israeli-Palestinian process afloat in the increasingly dangerous waters of the Middle East.

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November 20, 2007

Torpedoing Annapolis

Palestinian terrorists are stepping up their attacks with a goal of sabotaging the upcoming Annapolis conference. This was the assessment of IDF Chief of Staff Gabi Ashkenazi when he briefed the Knesset foreign affairs and defense committee. IsraCast says Israeli security forces have gone on alert to foil the terrorists drive to torpedo Annapolis.

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November 13, 2007

Olmert 'Goes For Broke'

Prime Minister Ehud Olmert is pulling out all the stops in his drive to wrap up a Palestinian peace treaty before US President George Bush leaves office in January 2009. In a briefing to the Knesset Foreign affairs and defense committee, Olmert spelled out his approach which stunned both his coalition partners and opposition rivals. IsraCast says it is still an open question whether the Prime Minister coalition partners are on board his radical shift from traditional foreign policy.

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November 12, 2007

Jordanian & Israeli Women Building Bridges

Israeli, Palestinian and Jordanian women have been marching for peace in Israel's Beit-Shean valley - a border area that was once an area of bloodshed between Israel and Jordan. But peace has reigned there ever since Israel's prime-minister Yitzhak Rabin and King Hussein signed a peace agreement in 1994. The guest of honor was Jordanian General Mansour Abu-Rashed, who served as an aide to the late King Hussein during the peace negotiations. General Abu-Rashed told IsraCast that he hopes Israeli and Palestinian leaders will go to Annapolis with the spirit of King Hussein and Yitzhak Rabin.

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Listen to Jordanian General Mansour Abu-Rashed Includes transcript of the interview
November 11, 2007

ELBARADEI - AHMADINEJAD COLLABORATOR?

Israel is ringing alarm bells after President Ahamadinejad declared that Iran is now operating 3,000 centrifuges - experts say they could produce enough enriched uranium for one nuclear bomb annually. IsraCast says Israel has now taken of the gloves in a last ditch effort to generate international sanctions that could still deter Tehran from getting the bomb. Jerusalem now views Dr. Mohamed ElBaradei as the main obstacle.

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October 30, 2007

IRANIAN PEOPLE VS. THE BOMB

More and more Iranians now fear that President Ahmadinejad's nuclear weapons is steering their country toward a global confrontation fraught with danger. This is the assessment of Menashe Amir, a leading Israeli expert on Iran, who monitors Iranian affairs on a daily basis. IsraCast presents analyst Amir's five point plan for stopping Ahmadinejad which he outlined in a public lecture:

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October 25, 2007

From Rabin To Annapolis

If Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin had not been assassinated twelve years ago by Israeli fanatic Yigal Amir would Israel now be at peace with the Palestinians? It is a question that has cropped up on October 24th the day the Jewish state officially marked the tragedy that has stunned Israelis ever since. IsraCast assesses the political climate leading up to the Rabin assassination and subsequent events leading to the upcoming Annapolis peace conference.

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October 12, 2007

ANNAPOLIS SPIN VS. GAZA ROCKETS

Barring unforeseen circumstances, the Israeli-Palestinian confrontation will go to the conference table in Annapolis next month at the invitation of U.S. President George W. Bush. It's a command performance, neither Israel's Prime Minister Ehud Olmert nor Palestinian West Bank President Mahmoud Abbas are likely to risk America's ire by refusing the invitation or being blamed for its failure. But IsraCast concludes that reality on the ground and the leadership status of Olmert and Abbas do not lend much credence for achieving a breakthrough.

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October 07, 2007

PEACE IN ANNAPOLIS?

What are the prospects for Middle East peace conference at Annapolis scheduled to convene at Annapolis next month? Although conference convener U.S. President George Bush has high hopes, the IsraCast assessment is that Annapolis has as little chance of bringing 'peace in our time' as did Munich nearly seventy years ago. While the participants try and rev up some momentum for Annapolis, Hamas reacts by escalating attacks on Israel from Gaza.

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September 27, 2007

'METHOD IN AHMADINEJAD'S MADNESS'

'Iranian President's Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's speeches in New York were a pack of lies designed to deceive the West' - that's the assessment of Arab Affairs expert Menashe Amir. In an interview with IsraCast, Amir said Ahmadinejad exploited the Shiite Islamic tradition of telling lies in order to mislead the enemy and cover your true intentions. It is known as 'taukia' and Ahmadinejad exploits it to create the false impression that Iran already has acquired the technology for enriching uranium for producing nuclear weapons.

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Listen to Audio Interview with Menashe Amir Includes transcript of the interview
September 21, 2007

GAZA & AHMADINEJAD - ENEMIES

What are the implications of the Israeli government's decision to declare the Gaza Strip an 'enemy entity'. Dr. Meir Rosenne, a former Israeli ambassador to the U.S. and France and a prominent jurist, told IsraCast that Israel like every other country is duty bound to defend its citizens and is not in violation of international law. Rosenne also said that Iranian president Ahmadinejad, who calls openly for Israel's destruction, should never have received a visa to visit the U.S.

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September 16, 2007

ISRAELI BLACKOUT

Israel is refusing to comment on the Washington Post report that Israeli jets bombed a Syrian nuclear facility supplied by North Korea on September 6th. IDF intelligence chief Gen. Amos Yadlin has just briefed the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee but made no reference to the alleged air strike. At the start of the closed door session, committee chairman Zachi Hanegbi said Gen.Yadlin that he was under no obligation to discuss the affair. Knesset Member Hanegbi later told IsraCast that Israel's refusal to comment on the alleged attack is making it easier for Syria to play down the matter and there were 'encouraging signs' that tension was subsiding.

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September 11, 2007

HAMAS WILL PAY

It was about two o'clock in the morning - terrorists just over the border in Gaza launch three Qassam rockets at the IDF training base near Kibbutz Zikim. One of them explodes near the tents where most of the soldiers are sleeping. Pandemonium - 67 are wounded from the rocket shrapnel and by concussion. Several are seriously wounded. Ambulances and helicopters rush to the scene and within forty minutes or so all the injured are being treated and evacuated to hospital. In light of the gravity of the Zikim attack and the recent split between radical Hamas and more moderate Fatah, IsraCast foresees Israel declaring total war against Hamas in Gaza.

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September 07, 2007

ENIGMA OF ISRAELI OVERFLIGHT

What was the mission of the mysterious Israeli flight into Syrian airspace which has not been commented on by Israeli officials? Both Syria and its ally Iran have condemned the overflight and warned of the consequences. After examining the information so far, IsraCast is of the view there is one explanation that appears more logical than all others. Meanwhile, on the Gaza border, the IDF's new high-tech tactics are in a race to suppress the Qassam rocketing before one of them causes a massacre in the Israeli town of Sderot. IDF Maj. Gen. (res.) Danny Yatom, a Labor Knesset member assesses the current confrontation and needs to be done.

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September 05, 2007

RUSSIAN ROULETTE IN SDEROT

Palestinian terrorists in the Gaza Strip have stepped up their Qassam rocketing of the Israeli town of Sderot as the new school year got underway - the terrorists called it a 'present'. On September 3rd seven Qassam rockets crashed into Sderot some during the early morning when parents were taking toddlers and children to school. There were no casualties but the town was terrorized with panic stricken parents and children rushing to bomb shelters. Thanks to 'Red Dawn', the early warning sirens give civilians some 15 seconds to run to safety. Angry parents cancelled school in protest. The next day the Knesset was reconvened from its summer recess for a special debate on the situation and Prime Minister Olmert's contacts with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. IsraCast asked Likud leader Bibi Netanyahu if Prime Minister Olmert was playing Russian roulette with the children of Sderot. Kadima MK Prof. Isaac Ben-Israel, a former IDF general, also assessed the Sderot situation and why the Israeli government is apparently holding back.

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August 31, 2007

NUCLEAR MESSAGE OR SNAFU

Israel is now building an underground nuclear bunker that could survive a nuclear attack, presumably from Iran. The story, complete with verifying photos, was carried by the Israeli newspaper Yediot Ahronot and sparked sharp criticism from Likud Knesset Member Yuval Steinitz who called it a grave violation of national security. IsraCast examines various aspects of the disclosure of Israel's nuclear bunker and Iranian expert Menashe Amir analyzes the latest statement by U.S. President George Bush that Iran will not be permitted to acquire nuclear weapons.

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August 28, 2007

AUSCHWITZ BORDERS?

Israel's Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas reportedly discussed an Israeli withdrawal on the West Bank at their latest meeting in Jerusalem. According to Israel Radio, the two leaders also considered a land swap involving West Bank settlements in return for Israeli territory in the Negev desert as well as a partition of Jerusalem. The right- wing Likud party has charged that Olmert has no mandate to negotiate such issues. Likud MK Yuval Steinitz told IsraCast that an Israeli pullback to the former lines of 1967 would lead to a Holocaust for the Jewish state.

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August 27, 2007

Ahmadinejad, Stop threatening Israel

While Israelis are worried from the Iranian nuclear threat, MK Hilo decided to act on the issue. In a letter which is making its way to Iran, she is calling Ahmadinejad to stop his threats to exterminate Israel. Nadia Hilo is an Israeli Arab and as a member of the Labor party she was elected to the Knesset in the last elections. IsraCast brings you this open letter written by her to the Iranian president.

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August 25, 2007

STRATEGIC QASSAM vs. DIPLOMATIC BLITZ

In spite of intense diplomatic activity scheduled for this fall, little will likely change in the Israeli-Palestinian confrontation. IDF Maj. Gen. (res.) Shalom Harari sees slim chance of the international conference achieving little more than vague understandings because Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas cannot exercise any control over his own West Bank terrorists. Meanwhile, the Hamas regime in the Gaza Strip is locked in an escalating confrontation with Israel. This week a terrorist rocket scored a direct hit on an Israeli kindergarten in Sderot that was empty of children at the time. In an interview with IsraCast Gen. Harari, now an analyst at the Herzliya Center, warned that if a Qassam rocket hits a crowded synagogue or kindergarten it will trigger a massive IDF operation into Gaza.

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August 17, 2007

ISRAELI-SYRIAN MISCALCULATION

This week both Israeli and Syrian leaders have been trying to calm recent tension on the Israeli controlled Golan Heights that were captured in the Yom-Kippur War of 1973. The IDF and the Syrian army have been training on the Golan against the backdrop of some belligerent statements by Syrian President Bashar Assad that he would retrieve the area one way or another. Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Defense Minister Ehud Barak toured the north declaring that Israel had no intention on attacking Syria. Syrian Vice- President Farouk Ashara also said Damascus was not about to go to war. However, Israeli expert Professor Eyal Zisser told IsraCast that despite the calming declarations, a minor incident or mistake could trigger an Israeli - Syrian war.

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