An Event and A Regional Tendency

Israeli political and press circles witness a growing discussion on the benefit of the policy adopted by Olmert’s government and the US administration concerning Palestinian crisis since Hamas’s success in terminating conflict inside Gaza against Dahlan’s security organs which were supported financially and logistically by the Americans.
European and Israeli press expressed a negative appreciation of this policy in the light of recent developments. Former Israeli foreign minister Shlomo Ben Ami wrote an article in which he said that holding Mahmoud Abbas and his weak government responsibility for eliminating Hamas means accelerating his fall in a difficult labyrinth because supporting Abbas with money and weapons will not solve any serious problem as long as Washington and Tel Aviv are determined not to give Abbas any political gain related to the known Palestinian demands. This will enhance the influence of Hamas and other Palestinian factions.
Some Israeli press articles had already called Olmert government not to isolate Hamas and to negotiate with it after releasing the British journalist Alan Johnston, and in the afterhmath of Fath fighter’s rebellion against Salam Fayyad government’s decision to disarm resistance factions.

An Event and a Lebanese Tendency

The US ambassador Jeffrey Feltman’s statements raised a wave of angry reactions in many Lebanese political circles and raised questions and surprise in circles classified as moderate. While some comments said his statements violate the formalities of dealing between any ambassador and any foreign state that he represents his country in it.
Feltman’s confirmation that the president should be elected by the present representatives and his indirect call for the army’s leader and the bank’s head to reject dealing with the new government that president Lahoud may form, revealed him in the position of the states’ ruler without even respecting his loyal allies or As-Siniora government.
Meanwhile, France works hard to guarantee the dialogue forum’s success, while observers turn to Arab League secretary general’s visit to Damascus tomorrow, coming from Riyadh.
Some analysts in Beirut think that Washington and its Lebanese allies look at the active Arab and international initiatives and endeavors as a required cover for wasting time in order to leave the reins of the initiatives in the loyals’ hands until the date of the presidential election in the last week of next September. The analysts warn from a plan to drown the country in a state of confusion and pave the way for the possibility of holding a meeting abroad for the parliamentary majority under international cover to elect Nassib Lahoud as a president after he was adopted as a presidential candidate by March 14 alliance in accordance with a US recommendation that aims at exploiting his family relationship with the Saudi King to guarantee an Arab cover for this explosive step, in case it happens.

Arab Press

Arab papers said the ministerial meeting of the Gulf cooperation council called for the return of condition in Gaza to its normal state before Hamas’s control of the strip.
The meeting also called Lebanese sides to return to national dialogue. Saudi foreign minister Sau’d al-Faisal stressed in a press conference on the sidelines of the gulf cooperation council ministerial meeting the peoples’ right to possess peaceful nuclear energy, calling for a peaceful solution to Iran’s nuclear file.
As for the nature of Arab secretary general Amr Moussa’s visit to Syria and Saudi Arabia, the foreign minister made reservation on declaring the content of Moussa’s mission.
Reuters quoted officials in the UN higher commission for refugees’ affairs as saying that donating states abstained from offering aids to Syria and Jordan despite their hosting of the largest number of Iraqi refugees.

Lebanese Press

An-Nahar quoted Arab League Secretary General Amr Moussa as saying that dialogue in France does not obstruct Arab endeavors.
The paper added that investigation into the assassination of Representative Pierre Gemayel has been completed and the accusation is documented against Fatah al-Islam.
As-Safir said Iranian president Mahmud Ahmadinejad will visit Syria, while Saudi foreign minister Saud al-Faisal will head for Iran, pointing out that Amr Moussa holds the file of Arab dialogue with Syria.
Ad-Diayr said the contest between Michel Aoun and Samir Gegea continues.
Al-Akbar said officials of the Palestinian security force arrived in al-Badawi camp, adding that German mediation between Hizbullah and Israel to release the two Israeli captives continues.
Lebanese papers quoted a high ranking French official as saying that if the Lebanese do not solve their crisis constitutional confusion will dominate. Hizbollah criticized the ruling team’s intervention in the investigations into former premier Rafiq al-Hariri’s assassination, and the team’s attempts to oust the investigator Elias Eid.

International Press

The Spanish paper El Periodico said it will be good if the socialist party and the popular party don’t start a political battle in the light of the attack on the Spanish force in South Lebanon, adding that this issue is international and requires conciliation.
The Spanish paper El Pais said the new British Prime Minister Gordon Brown’s relations with Tony Blair witnessed deterioration recently.
The Spanish paper El Mundo said Russian president Vladimir Putin and US president George Bush agreed during their last summit on one point only, which is the necessity of preventing Iran form possessing nuclear weapons.
The Israeli paper Yedioth Ahronoth published a report on memoirs which will be published by former spy Marcus Kilenberg who worked for the Soviets. What surprised the Israeli intelligence is that an Israeli scientist was recruited by the Soviets to work as a spy for them during the Cold War.

Arab Satellite Stations’ Interviews

ANB
Program: A News Report
Member of the US Senate, Senator Pete Domenici said he does not support the continuity of the current US strategy in Iraq.

Al-Alam
Program: With the Event
Director of the Martyr As-Sadr office in Damascus Sheik Raed al-Kazemi said As-Sadr trend rejects the gas and oil law, pointing out that the Iraqi working force in absent from such projects and the Iraqi government cannot, in accordance with law, contract an Iraqi expert before five years of the project’s beginning. In addition to this, the Iraqi oil’s marketing will be in the hand of foreign corporations.

Television Stations News in Lebanon

Al-Manar said the US ambassador Jeffrey Feltman’s televised talk had its share of condemnation due to its intervention in Lebanese affairs.
The NTV said Representative Saad Hariri’s phone call from Paris with General Aoun seeks Christian support.
The NBN said the ruling team adopts the policy of privatization and generalizes it on all the state’s sectors under a cover from As-Siniora government.
The LBC said the phone call between Saad Hariri and Aoun is a message to many sides.
The Future TV quoted a French official as saying that the Lebanese dialogue forum in France aims at defrosting ice between Lebanese sides.

Television Stations Interviews in Lebanon

Al-Manar
Program: The Hour’s Talk Former information minister Michel Samaha said the dialogue forum in Paris will not solve the crisis, pointing out that when Jean-Claude Cousseran decided to visit Damascus, the representative Walid Eido was killed and things turned upside down in Lebanon.
He added that the opposition will oust the current government with democracy and form another one instead of it.