Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Today's news 11/4

Some Middle East news you might not have seen elsewhere...

Israel intercepted a ship carrying arms illegally, presumably from Iran to Hezbollah. Also, Hamas denied Israeli accusations that it tested rockets with a range of 60 kilometers.

There is a lot of discussion about today's UN General Assembly debate on a resolution supporting Goldstone. The Arab League has a draft resolution and the EU has some proposed changes, mostly to refer the matter back down to the UNHRC in three months rather than up to the Security Council. There is sharp debate within the Arab camp (including Richard Falk) as to which method is most effective.

The PFLP and Fatah took credit for firing mortars at Israel yesterday. In this case, it was in reprisal for...the 92nd anniversary of the Balfour Declaration. See, they never initiate hostilities, it is always in reaction to Zionist crimes!

The number of articles in the PalArab press about negotiations for Gilad Shalit have been increasing lately. Today, PalPress quotes a Kuwaiti newspaper (not usually very reliable, IMHO) that Hamas has taken Marwan Barghouti off the table in exchange for Israel releasing Hamas prisoners with "blood on their hands." Yesterday an article was claiming that there will be some significant movement ahead of Eid al Adha, at the end of November.

There is controversy in Egypt over a Beyonce concert scheduled for later this week. There is resentment both for the high ticket prices ($400) and the fact that only rich Egyptians can go. Also, religious Muslims aren't happy with her outfits. 15 girls fainted at her recent concert in Abu Dhabi.

Dubai is reportedly going to appoint female muftis next year, who can issue fatwas - even for men.