Condi Rice is coming back to the Middle East next week. Saeb Erekat is preparing a bunch of papers for her that boil down to a complete rejection of any compromise with Israel on every issue and the scorning of any "partial" agreement that doesn't address every core issue. He is telling her "all or nothing." What a negotiator!
That same moderate negotiator accused Hamas of seeking a "long term truce" with Israel and of abandoning the Palestinian Arab people's rights of armed resistance, Jerusalem and the "right of return." Hamas denied this, and said that the PLO has been negotiating since 1974 and has yet to gain a centimeter of land as a result. Notice how the "moderates" and "extremists" both vie with each other in Arabic as to who is more dedicated to terrorism as a strategy.
Meanwhile, Abbas is prepared to tell Condi Rice of his own tough decision: to whine that the US doesn't sufficiently pressure Israel to cave on every issue.
There are reports that Olmert told Abbas that it might be a good idea if Palestinian Arabs who have lived in Lebanon for decades under horrendous conditions would become normal citizens of the country most of them were born in. Abbas, of course, rejected the very notion, because the happiness of his people is the least of his concerns.
In a similar story, another report was released about the dire conditions of Iraqi refugees of Palestinian Arab descent who are stuck in miserable camps onthe Syrian border, saying that the 2000 that are there are suffering a "slow death." No Arab nation has shown the slightest interest in taking these people in, although they have taken in hundreds of thousands of other Iraqis.
Other reports claim that Egypt is losing patience with Hamas' negotiating stance, and that it threatened to assassinate Hamas leaders itself if they don't get with the program.
Another Hamas spokesman again accuses the PA of the worst crime he can think of - of collaborating with Israel.
Australia is seeking to stop broadcasts of Hezbollah's Al Manar satellite TV on Indonesian satellite channels.
Egypt seized another half-ton of TNT near Rafah.
An Egyptian man divorced his wife after she actually made contact with TV star and heartthrob "Muhannad."
Gazans denied that intermittent rocket fire from Gaza was being done by black-market smugglers who are attempting to keep the prices of goods artificially high in Gaza, as the increase of goods crossing into Gaza from Israel is hurting their business.
And today is the anniversary of an Australian Christian's attempt to set fire the the Al Aqsa mosque in 1969, causing the usual gnashing of teeth.
UPDATE: A civilian was killed in Gaza as Hamas was performing live-fire exercises near a residential area.
There are claims that a little girl was similarly killed a week ago but I didn't see it in the newspapers.
The PalArab self-death count is at 153 for 2008.
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