Israeli Policies A Mixture Of Hard and Soft Line

Israel Moves Forward With Prisoner Release
On Sunday, 26 Palestinian prisoners, who had been involved in terror attacks against Israel, were released as part of the agreement to renew negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority.

The release is the second of four stages after the cabinet approved in July the release of 104 Palestinians imprisoned for at least 20 years.

Knesset Speaker Yuli Edelstein was quick to condemn the release of prisoners, saying on his Facebook page that “We stood for the principle of negotiations without preconditions before this process began, but this morning the names of arch-terrorists with blood on their hands were already publicized.”

While Palestinians embraced the release of the prisoners, they were not pleased with Netanyahu’s reiteration that Palestinian refugees would not be granted “right of return.”

“We ascribe importance to the unity of Jerusalem and, of course, to the cancellation of the right of return,” Netanyahu said bluntly. Palestinians have insisted that as part of final-status negotiations, Palestinian refugees should have the choice to return to Israel.

The negotiations themselves and the lack of progress specifically have created a sense of despair among young people, Alexander Kouttab of the European Council on Foreign Relations writes.

“Across the various forums, websites, and publications that are a staple of Palestinian political life both inside and outside the OPTs, many Palestinians are calling for a return to the drawing board and a reassessment of national strategies and goals. Options being promoted include far reaching reforms to the PLO, new elections for the Palestine National Council, and even the dismantlement of the PA. These are not cosmetic changes,” contends Kouttab.

His remarks come in a paper examining the Palestinian movement twenty years after the signing of the Oslo Accords.

Where Has Globalization Gone?
Writing in The New Republic, Mimi Dwyer wonders where the anti-globalization movement has gone and whether the attacks of 9/11 have doomed its future.

“Even a decade after the [9/11] attacks, it has failed to recapture the attentions of the masses. For instance: When Bruce Rich published Mortgaging the Earth, a seminal 1994 book on the environmental wrongs of the World Bank, it got two write-ups in the New York Times, plus mentions in The Economist, National Journal, the Chicago Tribune, the Los Angeles Times, the Washington Post, and elsewhere. He released a follow-up, Foreclosing the Future, earlier this month with minimal fanfare. It’s just as deeply-researched and filled with heretofore publicly unavailable Bank documents as its predecessor, yet it’s received fairly little attention,” she writes.

Dwyer spoke with a range of individuals favorable and unfavorable to the World Bank and international organizations who believe that the global recession has had a greater impact. While youth movements once focused on external organizations, they have turned their energies to protesting internal problems.

 

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