November 30, 2012 |
Thursday's overwhelming U.N. vote to elevate the status of Palestine at the world body inflicts yet another fracture in the facade of Western solidarity, exposing a divide among European Union and NATO member states over U.S. policy in the Middle East. Israel, Canada, Panama, the Czech Republic and four tiny Pacific island states were the only ones in the 193-member U.N. General Assembly siding with the U.S. in its quixotic vote against the Palestinian Authority's request for nonmember observer state status.
October 24, 2012 |
There's something shambling and unassuming about "The Flat," a home-movie quality to much of its footage. But it's not just any home that's being examined, and that makes all the difference. Israel's top-grossing documentary of last year as well as the winner of that country's best documentary award, "The Flat" succeeds by being wide-ranging as well as particular. It tells an out-of-the-ordinary personal story and examines broad historical issues of societal memory and selective amnesia, of what is hidden between generations and what is revealed.
November 2, 2011
In past decades, Palestinian nationalists thought they had to hijack planes or blow up Israeli civilians in order to attract international attention. Some still do, but moderate leaders are lately discovering that the path to recognition might lie instead through the United Nations. On Monday, they won a key victory when Palestine — a state that doesn't technically exist — was granted membership in the U.N. Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization. That's giving the Obama administration fits and angering pro-Israel members of Congress from both U.S. political parties, but regardless of how one feels about the proper borders of Israel, the Palestinian switch to a diplomatic strategy represents progress.
October 31, 2011 |
A decision by the United Nations' cultural organization to admit Palestine as a member state set off a confrontation between the U.S. and the U.N., threatening to strip Washington of influence in several key international agencies while cutting off a major source of contributions to the world body. The Obama administration said it would end funding for the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization hours after the group Monday voted 107 to 14 to accept the Palestinian Authority as a full member.
October 24, 2011 |
The Palestinian bid for statehood recognition by the United Nations is almost certain to be rejected if it is taken up by the Security Council. But as early as this week, the governing assembly of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization could grant the Palestinians membership in that organization. If this happens, as is widely expected, the United States would have to resign from UNESCO because of a 20-year-old law forbidding the payment of dues by the U.S. to any U.N. body that accepts Palestine as a member.
September 15, 2011 |
Rebuffing international pressure to soften their positions and return to the negotiating table, Israelis and Palestinians announced separately Thursday that they were moving forward with an expected diplomatic battle next week at the United Nations. Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas will address the U.N. General Assembly on Sept. 23, after which he will submit a formal application to admit Palestine into the international body as a state, according to his foreign minister, Riad Malki.