Newsletter : 6fax0324.txt
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Israeli Officials: Al-Qaeda Heading for Israel
The Al-Qaeda terror organization is working to establish a foothold in Palestinian
Authority-controlled areas, according to unidentified Israeli officials. Followers of Abu
Musaab Al-Zarqawi, the group's leader in Iraq, have already established contacts with
Arabs in Gaza and other PA-controlled areas. The organization already has links with
operatives in Lebanon, Syria, Jordan and Egypt. Two PA Arabs were indicted on Tuesday for
receiving funds from the group that were earmarked for a major attack planned for
Centrist Kadima Party Slips in Israeli Polls
By Jim Teeple (VOA-Jerusalem)
A poll released less than a week before Israeli's March 28 general elections shows the
centrist Kadima Party of acting Prime Minister Ehud Olmert slipping slightly in the polls.
A close associate of Olmert, former Prime Minister Shimon Peres, told reporters that
Kadima would like to reach a negotiated settlement with the Palestinians, but with Hamas
in charge of the Palestinian Authority there seems to be little chance of that
A leading poll said Olmert's Kadima Party will get 36 seats in the 120-seat Knesset,
easily winning next week's election, but not enough seats to form a government on its own.
The poll indicates that since last week, Kadima appears to have lost three seats.
According to the poll, Israel's left-wing Labor Party is getting stronger, gaining two
seats, while the right-wing Likud Party is losing strength and may only win 14 seats.
Speaking to a leading Hebrew-language daily newspaper, Olmert said any parties who want
to join his government will have to agree to his plan of drawing Israel's final border
with Palestinians by the year 2010, and withdrawing from most West Bank settlements, while
keeping three large settlement blocs. Olmert said Israel's separation barrier would serve
as the outline for a future border.
Peres, who is expected to get a senior post in a future Kadima government, told
reporters on Thursday that Israel would move quickly to implement the plan. "We are ready
immediately after the elections to open a negotiation with the Palestinians that are
willing to negotiate and willing to accept the 'road map' in order to arrive at the
agreement to mark future borders and to do it on an acceptable basis with the rest of the
Under the "road map" peace plan Palestinians are to forego violence and Israel is to
stop building settlements in the West Bank. But there has been little or no progress in
recent months between the two sides on implementing any of the Roadmap provisions.
Peres said Israel still views Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas as a negotiating
partner, but would have nothing to do with Hamas, the Islamic terrorist group that won
Palestinian parliamentary elections and which refuses to recognize Israel's right to
exist. "In order to agree, you have to agree that you accept international agreements," he
added. "And if want to destroy Israel what do we have to talk about?"
Palestinians across the political spectrum have harshly criticized the Kadima proposal,
which was first put forth last year by Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, shortly before
he was sidelined by a massive stroke. Palestinians said any future Palestinian state
should include all of the West Bank and Gaza Strip as well as east Jerusalem.
Germany: Islamists threaten EU, Israel
Germany's intelligence chief said on Thursday that the success of Germany and other
countries in hunting down terrorists has done little to reduce the threat "Islamic
terrorism" poses to Europe and Israel.
In a rare public appearance, Ernst Uhrlau, head of Germany's BND foreign intelligence
agency, said Europe had been transformed from an Islamist recruitment and financing center
into a target of Islamist extremism.
Hamas Makes Statements to Western Press, Denies Them in Arabic
The Hamas terror group, as part of its new role as head of the Palestinian Authority,
when presented in a conciliatory light in Western media, denies in Arabic, statements
heralded as moderate.
Ismail Haniyah of Hamas told CBS on March 16 that he hoped to some day sign a peace
agreement with Israel. In his CBS interview, Haniyah said that he was "seeking a peace
settlement and stability in this region," "looking forward to peace and tranquility in
this region," and "seeking American administration to create this missing peace."
According to a subsequent article in Al Hayat Al Jadida translated by
Palestinian Media Watch (PMW), "[Hamas] Member of Parliament Mushir Al-Masri denied what
was reported in various places in the media about Hamas abandoning its principles, relying
on statements attributed to the Prime Minister designate, Ismail Haniyah, according to
which he hopes that a peace treaty will be signed with the Israelis.
"He said that these statements, released on CBS, are unfounded [lit: naked of all
truth]. Al-Masri said that these matters are part of a crazy campaign which aims at
embarrassing and confusing the Palestinian arena and undermining the trust of the masses
in Hamas movement."
As to the Haniyah's statements, Al-Masri said: "the American channel [CBS] broadcast
that Sheikh Ismail Haniyah had said in an interview that he hoped that a treaty with
Israel would be signed in the White House. I believe that the basis for the controversy
over the [Hamas] political plan are (sic) the [peace] agreements, which in our opinion
bring no benefit."
PMW Director Itamar Marcus said that Hamas' behavior is not surprising. "It should be
noted that the reason for this strong rejection of the willingness for peace with Israel
is that it violates the most basic tenet of Hamas' belief, that Islam demands the
destruction of Israel. Article 13 of the Hamas charter states: `Renouncing any part of
Palestine [i.e. accepting Israel] means renouncing part of the religion.' Hamas would have
to scrap and recreate the basis of its religious ideology to accept Israel.
It should be noted that while former PLO Yasir Arafat would regularly make overtures
toward compromise in English, while expressing the opposite in Arabic, Hamas has refused
to do so on the same scale. This has not stopped Western journalists from trying to detect
and broadcast moderation in the Hamas leadership's stance following its landslide election
Landau Concerned Over Plans to Hand Over Old City
Likud Knesset member Uzi Landau, commenting on statements made by Otniel Schneller, who
stated Israel can give away areas of the eastern capital to become part of a Palestinian
state, expressed grave concerns.
According to Landau, plans to hand over portions of the eastern capital, predominately
Arab neighborhoods, to the Palestinian Authority, are intended to lay the groundwork for
Acting Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Shimon Peres to hand over the Temple Mount and the
Old City to Hamas.
Landau spoke of "Olmert's and Peres' political and security stupidity, which will
compromise the security of the city's residents and expose them to terror attacks from
Hamas troops that will be stationed along the walls of the Old City."
Killing Chickens Is Good Money
Workers who are willing to kill chickens in the Sharon region will receive a hefty sum
for the job, which involves denying the birds food and drink, and then offering them
The Agriculture Ministry and Union of Local Authorities told Ha'aretz that workers
would earn NIS 2,000 per day (about $430) because there are not enough people willing to
do the job.
The work would be available for a seven-day period. People who are experienced in
working with animals are preferred, and all those who apply are required to sign a
document that says they will not hold the employer responsible if they catch the avian
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