An Event and a Regional Trend

Israel between the events of Gaza and the West Bank and Waiting for Winograd’s Report

The Palestinian event is still occupying the forefront of developments in the area, which can be summed up as follows:
- 1. The rise of the US and Israeli pressures that aim at obliging the Egyptian authorities to close the crossings, which were opened by the steadfast Gazans.
- 2. Abbas-Olmert’s meeting did not lead to any practical results on the level of handing the Palestinian authorities the responsibility of supervising the crossings of Rafah.
- 3. The rise of the Israeli tone to market a plan to link the West Bank with the Israeli-Jordanian custody and the appearance of analyses that consider this choice a practical outlet from the Israeli failure in subjugating the Palestinian people and eliminating the resistance through the continuous aggressions and involving Washington’s Arab allies in destroying the idea of the Palestinian state,
- 4. The Israeli circles anticipation of the publishing of the complete text of Winograd’s report and Olmert’s ministers’ personal calculations of the political choices, which will result from this report.
- 5. Hamas’s leadership and the follow-up committee that emanated from the Palestinian conference in Damascus have started a comprehensive movement under the title of national unity and continuing dialogue with Fateh and the Palestinian authority and the continuity of the Arab popular movement of solidarity with the Palestinian people against the Israeli collective punishment and the anticipation of a comprehensive day for solidarity in the Islamic world next Friday before holding the conference of the Islamic states’ foreign ministers.

An Event and a Lebanese Trend

An Anticipation and Concern between Mar Mikhael Massacre and Cairo Meeting

The Lebanese press focused on the bloody events in Beirut’s southern suburb and the Arab foreign ministers’ meeting in Cairo.
- 1. The horrible results of the suburb’s events formed a dangerous political and security shock to the public opinion. 9 persons were killed and 20 others were wounded while they were protesting against the deterioration of the standards of living and the bad distribution of electricity on the Lebanese areas.
- 2. The quick investigation demanded by Amal and Hezbollah. The army’s leadership pledged to investigate into the events and what the Lebanese opposition expects from the military leadership will lead to many political results according to informed sources, which talked about complications which are still without answers in the light of the military deployment of the Lebanese Forces behind the army’s forces which moved to deal with the protests and the random opening of fire of the army’s force after arresting citizens and terrifying them.
- 3. The loyalists repeated their accusations of the opposition while the opposition called to investigate into events. The press talked about the presence of sides that pushed the army to clashes with the citizens to distort its image, wondering about the violations committed by the army’s soldiers, especially because some of those who were killed were from the coordination elements that cooperated with the army to end the problems.
- 4. The Arab foreign ministers’ meeting renewed the mission of Amer Musa and withdrew the secretary general’s interpretation of the second item related to the formation of the unity government, but questions are still posed on Musa’s luck in his expected visit to Lebanon in the light of the US desire to compensate the failure in Gaza with pressures to prevent the political compromise in Lebanon under the title of preventing the victory of the opposition which is classified in the category which is opposed to the American project in the area. The sources said the lesson will lie in whether Saudi Arabia and Egypt will exert serious efforts to convince the loyalists to respond to the continuity of dialogue with the opposition and its representative Michel Oun under the sponsorship of Amer Musa and facilitate solutions.

Arab and International Press

The Syrian daily Tichrin said there is a provocative and public US-Israeli decision to put an end to the Palestinian national rights.
Giora Eland said in an article published in al-Qabas that when the plan of disengagement was formulated and approved in April 2004, one issue remained without settling, which is the problem of the borders of Gaza-Egypt which is called Philadelphia.
Tesfi Ber’el said in an article published in al-Qabas: what happened in Gaza is a strategic shift that stripped Israel of its clothes.
The Emirate paper al-Khalij said in its editorial: the negotiations that took place yesterday between Mahmud Abbas and Ehud Olmert were not suitable in their form or their content.
Al-Bayan said in its editorial that the Palestinian national unity is a necessity to deal with the dangerous events of Gaza.

Satellite Stations

The Syrian Satellite Station
News Covering
Former Lebanese minister Suleiman Franjiyeh stressed that the opposition will not give up the guaranteeing third to guarantee the national decisions and prevent internationalizing the Lebanese issue.

Evening News
Lebanese cleric Mohamed Hussein Fadlalah called for bringing the US president George Bush for trial for destroying the economies of many of the world’s peoples and stealing their resources.

Lebanese Press

Ad-Diyar said: schism appeared again in Lebanon but the army has interfered to contain it and prevent divisions, pointing out that the Arab foreign ministers’ meeting was dominated by the US through its Arab allies, who vetoed the opposition’s participation in the government through the third plus one.
Al-Akhbar said on the rhythm of the daily events in Beirut, the Arab foreign ministers in Cairo gave the Arab league secretary general a second chance to continue his endeavors in Lebanon.
As-Safir said: unknown snipers, who took positions behind the Lebanese army, have killed 9 citizens.

Television Stations in Lebanon

Al-Manar said: the protest against the continuity of cutting electricity has changed into bloody events that resulted in killing 9 citizens.
The NTV wondered if cutting the electricity or the electrified political conditions is responsible for the recent events.
The NBN said: while the Arab foreign ministers were meeting, anarchy dominated Beirut.
The OTV said there is an attempt to return the country to the epoch of militias and internal conflicts.
The LBC said the events will not stop here and they are nominated for more escalation.
The Future said the opposition chose the time for escalation in order to target the meeting of the Arab foreign ministers.

Program: The Week in an Hour
Former deputy house speaker Elli Farzali said what happened yesterday is a dark day, calling for investigating into the events,
The Egyptian paper al-Ahram’s editor-in-chief Osama Saraya said that Syria gave up its support for general Michel Suleiman and this will prolong the crisis,
The journalist Khalil Flehan said the political class is unable to administer the country and Lebanon is vulnerable now.

Tendencies is a daily political watch newsletter about the Near East, issued by New Orient News agency in Beirut, Lebanon. It is available on in Arabic, English, French, German, and Spanish languages. Also worth a read is Indicators, the daily Near East economic watch newsletter, available in Arabic, English and Spanish.