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June 08, 2007

ISRAELI - SYRIAN DILEMMA

As forecast by IsraCast, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert is now ready to actively explore the intentions of Syria President Bashaar Assad. Olmert had to fill two necessary requirements: first the greenlight from U.S. President George W. Bush and second a new and respected defense minister, to ease the jitters of an Israeli public which has grave doubts about Olmert's capabilties after the Second Lebanon War.

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June 07, 2007

Entebbe Conspiracy & British Bombings

British lecturers are not only out to boycott Israeli professors and students, the British Foreign Office is also in on the act. Official classified documents now released after the 30 year ban includes one that alleges that Palestinian terrorists skyjacked the Air France airliner to Entebbe in 1976 with the knowledge and aid of the Shin Beit, Israel's Security Service. As ridiculous as the allegation appears to be, it has received serious coverage by the BBC and several leading newspapers. The 'conspiracy' is based solely on an Arab source. IsraCast is publishing photos of what were very likely to have been British car bombings in Jerusalem before the end of the mandate in 1948. These photos were taken by the well known photographer David Rubinger.

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June 03, 2007

BRITISH BOYCOTT & GERMAN NAZIS

The boycott of Israeli academia recommended by the University and College Union (UCU) in Britain has sparked an angry response in Israel. Journalist Tommy Lapid wrote this imaginary Israeli response to what most Israelis view as an outrageous decision by the 300 lecturers who represent some 120,000 others in Britain. On his weekly program on Israel Radio, Lapid a former Justice Minister read his tongue in cheek letter to a British professor. IsraCast has found it appropriate to translate his response that ended with a rendition of 'Mad Dogs & Englishmen'.

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May 31, 2007

BRITISH PROFS FAIL OBJECTIVITY

In Britain, the University and College Union (UCU) vote to promote a boycott of Israeli academic institutions has aroused a furious Israeli reaction. The UCU boycott was said to be in protest to Israel's actions in the conflict with the Palestinians. Even super-dove Yossi Beilin of the left wing Labor party called on British Prime Minister Tony Blair to condemn the UCU decision. Otherwise Beilin said the outgoing leader's term would be stained by such an ignominy. The UCU resolution, approved by 158 to 99, is only a recommendation until approved by a majority of the body's 120,000 members. IsraCast evaluates the UCU motion and other manifestations of what appear to be a double standard of morality applied only to the Jewish state.

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May 29, 2007

NEW BALL GAME IN LABOR

What do the results of the Labor party leadership primary auger for the campaign before the June 12th runoff? IsraCast says new issues will surface that may determine the outcome before Laborites again go to the polls to pick their new leader.

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May 27, 2007

GENERAL BARAK OR ADMIRAL AYALON ?

In the Labor party race for new party leader, two top retired military commanders are leading the pack. According to opinion polls, Gen.(ret.) Ehud Barak and Admiral(ret.) Ami Ayalon are virtually tied before the May 28th ballot. IsraCast says a large number of Laborites are still undecided and their votes will likely decide the outcome. However the question is can either Ayalon or Barak win by passing the 40% threshold or will the two top candidates have to compete in a runoff. The incumbent Defense Minister Amir Peretz is not giving up declaring that last time the polls proved wrong when they predicted he would lose to Shimon Peres.

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May 25, 2007

HAMAS 'POLITICIANS' & TERRORISTS

The Palestinian rockets continued crashing into Sderot this week killing and wounding Israeli civilians. One of Israel's responses is to arrest Hamas politicians and IsraCast points to the possibility that they may also face targeted killing if they do not halt the Qassams from Gaza.

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May 22, 2007

HAMAS IN ISRAELI CROSSHAIRS

How will Israel react after a Qassam rocket from Gaza killed an Israeli woman driving in Sderot on Monday night? IsraCast says subsequent statements by Israeli officials indicate that Hamas political leaders may be put on Israel's hit list in addition to those who actually send the launchers of the rockets. What is certain is that targeted killings and other counter-terror operation will be escalated now but a major ground operation into the Gaza Strip is not in the offing.

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May 19, 2007

HARD CHOICES ON GAZA

Palestinians kept up their rocket barrage at the Israeli town of Sderot on Friday - this week alone they have terrorized the town with some one-hundred Qassams crashing down by day and night. The IDF has been ordered to step up counter-terror strikes but a senior officer rules out a major ground operation at this time. Prime Minister Ehud Olmert also appears ready to adopt this policy. IsraCast is of the view that Olmert will try and ride out the coming days with the expectation that his Labor coalition partners will elect either Ehud Barak or Ami Ayalon as party leader who will then take over as defense minister.

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May 16, 2007

SDEROT UNDER FIRE

As anticipated by IsraCast, the bloody Palestinian infighting between Hamas and Fatah in the Gaza Strip has spilled over into Israel. The Palestinians have launched over 30 Qassam rockets at the Israeli town of Sderot apparently in an attempt to deflect the focus from their internal feud that killed at least 15 Palestinians on Tuesday, May 15th. The rockets are terrorizing the children, women and men. In the initial bombardment, one woman was seriously injured and dozens more were lightly hurt and suffered from shock. While the Israeli government considers what to do, Jewish-Russian philanthropist Arkadi Gaydamak has stepped in with his own private solution.

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May 14, 2007

LIVNI, ARAB LEAGUE & GAZA

Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni presented a wide ranging Briefing on Israel's foreign relations when the Knesset Foreign Affairs & Defense Committee was opened to the public for the first time. Livni focused on the Arab League initiative which offers full peace in return for a final settlement of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. IsraCast reports that Livni was cautiously optimistic about the Arab League aiding the peace process but it could not substitute for the Palestinians at the conference table. Meanwhile in the Gaza Strip, the Hamas - Fatah bloodbath continues but this has not interfered with the the terrorists launch more Qassam rockets into Israel.

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May 11, 2007

AUTOPSY OF SECOND LEBANON WAR

The publication of the long awaited Winograd testimony has done little to alter the Israeli public's perception that Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, Defense Minister Amir Peretz and IDF Chief of Staff Dan Halutz fumbled the Second Lebanon War last summer. Olmert and Peretz, both inexperienced in conducting a war, rushed into battle with a military commander determined to prove that his pilots could win a guerrilla war with Hezbollah. When this strategy got bogged down, all three were at a loss of what to do. An IsraCast analysis indicates there although Olmert may have survived the first wave of public criticism, he now faces a political campaign of attrition calling on him to step down.

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May 08, 2007

SECOND LEBANON WAR REVISITED

Not only Israel, but countries in the Middle East and the international community are still pondering what happened to the vaunted Israel Defense Forces Israel in last summer's war against Hezbollah guerrillas in Lebanon. The Winograd Commission has painted the the broad outline focusing on the faulty decision making of Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, Defense Minister Amir Peretz and former Chief of Staff Dan Halutz. But it is Halutz's predecessor, Moshe Yaalon who has spelled out what what went wrong from the strategic and tactical points of view. Yaalon who served as Chief of Staff from 2002 , after the IDF withdrawal from southern Lebanon, until the spring of 2005, has given extensive interviews to the Maariv newspaper and Channel One TV. IsraCast summarizes these two important insights into what went wrong in the Second Lebanon war.

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May 04, 2007

OLMERT'S SURVIVAL

The scathing findings of the Winograd interim report were harsher than expected and have rocked Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and his coalition government. But Olmert has absorbed the immediate impact, rolling with the punches and determined to survive. But as previously discussed by IsraCast, the Prime Minister could be at the mercy of Labor, his main coalition partner which faces a major dilemma over remaining in an Olmert-led cabinet.

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May 01, 2007

POLITICAL TSUNAMI SWEEPING ISRAEL

A political tsunami is now sweeping Israel after Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Defense Minister Amir Peretz declared they will not resign after the Winograd Enquiry condemned their conduct of the Second Lebanon War. Labor Party Cabinet Minister Eitan Kabel has resigned declaring that he could no longer serve in a cabinet lead by Olmert. Israelis from different parts of Israel for a big protest demonstration against the government in Tel Aviv on Thursday night. IsraCast reports that both Olmert and Peretz appear to be on borrowed time as they face a growing wave of protest.

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April 30, 2007

WINOGRAD FALLOUT

All bets are off after the Winograd Inquiry published what amounts to a condemnation of Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's handling of last summer's 'Second Lebanon War'. Also hauled over the coals were Defense Minister Amir Peretz, former IDF Chief of Staff Dan Halutz, the entire cabinet and successive Israeli governments that ignored the Hezbollah threat after the IDFs unilateral evacuation of southern Lebanon in May 2006. IsraCast reports that after the dust settles, public opinion and its impact on Israel's domestic politics will apparently determine what happens next.

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April 27, 2007

WINOGRAD COUNTDOWN

The futures of Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Defense Minister Amir Peretz will be on the line when the Winograd Commission releases its partial report on April 30th.As previously reported by IsraCast, the chances are good that Olmert will survive the interim findings. The long awaited conclusions will deal with the period from the IDF evacuation of the security zone in southern Lebanon back in May 2000 until the first five days of the war that erupted on July 12th 2006. Leaks to the media from Winograd testimony have highlighted the responsibility of former IDF Chief of Staff Dan Halutz for failing to respond to warnings from senior officers before the war and his inexperience in conducting a war against the Hizballah guerillas.

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April 23, 2007

TWILIGHT ZONE

As Israel's Independence Day draws near, the Jewish state faces a range of evolving prospects and dangers. At the same time, if Prime minister Ehud Olmert survives the Winograd Commission into the Second Lebanon War, he will have likely have new defense and finance ministers at his side. IsraCast analyzes the current situation and the domestic political scene and possibly some dramatic changes.

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April 16, 2007

Exclusive - Catholic Collusion In Croatia

Some of the most horrific Holocaust  atrocities against Jews were perpetrated by the Pavelic regime in Croatia. The tragic history of the Jewish communities in that country has yet to be told because there are literally no survivors. But part of the documentation still survives. On this Holocaust and Remembrance Day, Avi Yaffe of IsraCast reveals documented evidence of how the Catholic church collaborated in the annihilation of the Jewish communities of Croatia. The town of Vukovar, located on the Croatian border with Serbia, is but an example of what transpired in Croatia where the Ustasha movement was unleashed, with the support of the Catholic church, to launch a sadistic campaign of murder and torture against Serbs, Jews and Gypsies. The Ustasha barbarity was said to have even shocked their German masters. 

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April 13, 2007

CORPORAL SHALIT & PALESTINIAN KILLERS

Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and his top advisors have been consulting on the list of hundreds of security prisoners that the Palestinians are demanding in return for the release of IDF Corporal Gilad Shalit. The Israeli cabinet is expected to take a final decision on whether to free Palestinians with Israeli blood on their hands. IsraCast analyzes the various views on this painful issue that has been dominating the Israeli media.

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