1424 articles tagged "Israel"
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Netanyahu may settle for interim government until early election
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report March 15, 2009
Having failed to draw Kadima and Labor into a unity government, debkafile's political sources report that Israel's prime minister-designate Binyamin Netanyahu may settle for a provisional administration serving six months before calling another early election.
He believes he can use the extra six months to good advantage because he expects Israel to be embroiled in a major military conflict during this time, in which case the holdouts Kadima and Labor will come aboard.
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Bank of Israel stimulus plan focuses on falling job market
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report March 14, 2009
The central bank governor, Stanley Fischer, recommended a very modest $1 bn budget deficit (6 percent) as first aid for Israel's deepening recession. His plan, published Tuesday, March 10, would spread the extra outlay on stimulating the job market and exports and investing in new infrastructure projects.
Estimating that unemployment will rise to 8 percent this year in all fields, Fischer proposes raising unemployment benefits and extending the period of entitlement.
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Israel: Iran has crossed technological threshold in drive for nuclear bomb<br/>
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report March 14, 2009
Maj. Gen. Amos Yadlin, head of Israeli military intelligence AMAN, confirmed at the weekly government session in Jerusalem Sunday, March 8, that Iran had crossed the technological threshold to a nuclear bomb capability and required only a strategic decision to go into production.
Tehran TV disclosed Sunday that Iran had test fired a new long-range missile, without offering details.
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Palestinian tractor driver shot while rampaging in central Jerusalem<br/>
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report March 7, 2009
The Palestinian tractor driver hoisted a police van, injuring two police officers, in downtown Jerusalem. When he tried to toss the van onto a bus packed with schoolgirls, a passing taxi driver pulled a gun and shot him dead.
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Labor edges towards joining Netanyahu government
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report March 7, 2009
debkafile's political sources report that the Histadrut Trade Unions leader, Ofer Eini, who has emerged as supreme national fixer in the ongoing crises over business closures and layoffs, has thrown his support behind the outgoing defense minister Ehud Barak's bid to join Binyamin Netanyahu's Likud-led government.
This powerful support brings Netanyahu closer to his goal of a broad national government.

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Five days to Israel's poll: Frontrunner Netanyahu is slipping
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report March 7, 2009
The man certain to form the next Israeli government after the general election of Feb. 10, Likud's Binyamin Netanyahu, started out with a handy lead of well over 30 Knesset seats (out of 120). But his campaign blunders are eroding this lead to below 30. The deserters are swinging over to Avigdor Lieberman's right-wing Israel Beitenu which is now polling 20 and still counting.
In a campaign dominated by personalities and security concerns, Netanyahu's big mistake is his apparent choice of the unpopular Labor leader, Ehud Barak, to carry on as defense minister in the next government. His second is his refusal to name a finance minister for a country worried sick by the slide into serious recession and growing unemployment.
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Olmert to stand trial in case of Talansky cash envelopes<br/>
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report March 3, 2009
Preparing to end his term as prime minister, Ehud Olmert was informed Sunday, March 1 that state attorney Menahem Mazuz had decided to indict him on corruption charges in the Talansky case. Moshe Talansky, a Long Island businessman, testified last May that he gave Olmert payments of $670,000, some stuffed in envelopes during the years 2002 to 2005 before he became prime minister.
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New Israel killer drone can take out Iran's S-300 anti-air missile<br/>
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report March 3, 2009
The Iranian media were first to disclose that the sophisticated Israeli Harop drone is capable of targeting the Russian radar-equipped S-300 anti-air missile before it enters attack mode.
debkafile's military sources report that Israel's Harop killer-drone can travel 1,000 km to patrol an assigned area and loiter there until a hostile target is exposed when its 23-kilo warhead strikes.

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Too Soon to Celebrate End of Gaza Conflict
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report March 2, 2009
Israeli leaders insist that Israel's armed forces left Hamas seriously crippled. This is undeniable but still the Gaza conflict is not over yet.
The divisions in the Arab world have encouraged Tehran to persist in rearming Hamas and the Hamas-Damascus faction to maintain its intransigent posture. They are certain that high military tension against Israel in the Gaza Strip and the diplomatic pressure on Egypt will break them down.
This contest of strength crackles with inflammatory potential, exacerbated by two key dates: Israel's general election on Feb. 10 - Arab foes have traditionally sought to influence the outcome of Israel's elections; and Feb. 12, the first anniversary of the violent death in Damascus of Hizballah's military chief Imad Mughniyeh.
This simmering stew will greet the Obama administration's new Middle East envoy, George Mitchell, when he launches his mission this week.

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Olmert to stand trial in case of Talansky cash envelopes<br/>
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report March 1, 2009
Preparing to end his term as prime minister, Ehud Olmert was informed Sunday, March 1 that state attorney Menahem Mazuz had decided to indict him on corruption charges in the Talansky case. Moshe Talansky, a Long Island businessman, testified last May that he gave Olmert payments of $150,000, largely stuffed in envelopes before he became prime minister from 2002 to 2005.
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Netanyahu's three candidates for defense<br/>
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report March 1, 2009
Sources close to prime minister-designate Binyamin Netanyahu reported Wednesday night, Feb. 25, that his three candidates for defense are in descending order the incumbent Ehud Barak, head of the Labor party, Shaul Mofaz of Kadima or Moshe Yaalon of Likud. All three are former chiefs of staff.
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Netanyahu eyes Nathan Sharansky for foreign minister
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report March 1, 2009
After Labor and Kadima leader Ehud Barak and Tzipi Livni refused to join his wall-to-wall national government, Israel's designated prime minister Binyamin Netanyahu has launched negotiations for a centrist government coalition supported by a parliamentary majority of 65 members of the right-of-center and religious parties.
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Livni and Barak agree to meet Netanyahu again after spurning his unity offer<br/>
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report February 25, 2009
While Labor is solidly behind Ehud Barak's decision to go into opposition, Tzipi Livni could not afford to shut the door because her Kadima party is on the point of revolt. They are eager to take up the top jobs on offer rather than joining her "fighting opposition."
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Cabinet unanimously approves Olmert's demand to free Gilead Shalit first<br/>
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report February 22, 2009
A special cabinet session Wednesday, Feb. 18, unanimously endorsed prime minister Ehud Olmert's demand that Gilead Shalit's freedom be a pre-condition for any truce arrangements for Gaza and its crossings. Until Olmert took the reins out of his hands, defense minister Barak had been leading the Israeli side of the Cairo talks without making the release of the Israeli soldier a priority. Olmert has cut him out of the picture.
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President Peres admits Gaza disengagement was a mistake
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report February 22, 2009
As he began consultations for the formation of Israel's post-election cabinet Wednesday, Feb. 18, President Shimon Peres made an extraordinary statement. Addressing the Presidents Conference, he admitted for the first time that Israel's unilateral disengagement from the Gaza Strip in 2005 was a mistake "which will not be repeated." His decision regarding the composition of the future government would therefore be dictated by its policies, he said.
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New tennis ball-sized camera with 360-degrees range for Israeli infantry
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report February 21, 2009
One of the hi-tech gadgets the Israeli Defense Forces exhibited at its Southern Command headquarters Tuesday, Feb. 17, was EyeBall, the size of a tennis ball. Tossed into a closed area it relays a 360-degree picture of its interior in 15 seconds. Made by ODF Optronics, Tel Aviv, this was one of the gadgets Israeli troops used in last month's Gaza operation to detect the booby traps with which Hamas wired homes, schools and bunkers.
Also used was an array of robots armed with cameras.
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Obama backs Israel unity government headed by Netanyahu
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report February 19, 2009
US president Barack Obama has bought Likud leader Binyamin Netanyahu's program for attacking the Palestinian issue by first building a strong West Bank economy, debkafile's Washington sources report. For its execution, Washington is in favor of Netanyahu forming a unity government in partnership with Kadima's Tzipi Livni and Labor's Ehud Barak. Outgoing prime minister Ehud Olmert has invited Netanyahu to join his next consultation with Livni and Barak on handling the Hamas truce talks in Cairo.
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Netanyahu offers Livni 10 portfolios, may form government without Lieberman
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report February 17, 2009
debkafile's political sources report that in preliminary talks Wednesday, Likud leader Binyamin Netanyahu offered Kadima's Tzipi Livni the pick of 10 top portfolios for joining a government led by him. He has refused to consider rotating the premiership between them. Rather than leaning on right-wing support, Netanyahu hopes to coax both Livni and Labor leader Ehud Barak to join his administration.
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Kadima's lead over Likud shrinks to one place, spelling unstable government
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report February 15, 2009
Both claim the lead for forming the next government. Tzipi Livni's Kadima came out on top of Israel's general election Tuesday, Feb. 10, with 28 Knesset seats (out of 120)- only one place ahead of the 27 polled by Binyamin Netanyahu's Likud. He heads the right-of-center camp of 64 against the 56 of the center and left. Livni cannot form a government without Likud and defense minister Ehud Barak's Labor (13), unless her scant win is solidified by the still uncounted military votes. Neither can hope for a stable majority.

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Has Livni buried the two-state solution of Israel-Palestinian dispute?
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report February 10, 2009
The aspiring prime minister, foreign minister Tzipi Livni, broke new ground when she voiced her views on the Middle East dispute this week. She challenged US and European diplomacy's conventional wisdom of gearing peace to a two-state solution. Palestinian leader Ahmed Quraia followed her which disclosures of what he claimed to be Israel's last peace offer - and rejecting it out of hand.
Tzipi Livni used an apparent paradox to bury the two-state solution. In a speech she gave to high school pupils Thursday, Dec. 11, she said: "The place for Israeli Arabs to exercise their national aspirations is a future Palestinian state - not Israel, which is the Jewish national home." Livni's next comment: "No single Palestinian refugee will be admitted to Israel" was a roundabout message in the same vein to the Israeli Arab minority (a steady one-fifth of the population).
She clarified this later by saying that while Israeli Arabs would not be forced to leave or lose their civil rights, "those who wished to realize their national aspirations should look elsewhere," namely to a Palestinian state when it rises.
But what Palestine was she talking about?
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