US election hands Netanyahu giant dilemma on Iran

By Anshel Pfeffer, February 9, 2012

The strategic timetable for the next nine months is becoming increasingly clear. Israel's apparent plans to strike Iran this year are limited by one crucial date: November 6 - the day of the US presidential elections.

Although he wishes with all his heart for a Republican victory, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is predicting the re-election of Barack Obama.


Republicans starting to reap kosher vote, says poll

By Matthew Brooks, February 9, 2012

The stereotype of the Jewish voter as a confirmed Democrat from cradle to grave is starting to crack.


Fears over Syrian chemical stores

By Anshel Pfeffer, February 9, 2012

Concern is mounting in Israel regarding the fate of missiles and chemical weapons as the civil war in Syria deepens.

The Syrian army, which is currently involved in the bloody repression of the uprising against President Bashar Assad, holds major stores of artillery shells and warheads capable of delivering nerve gas and biological agents.


Will French Greens get Yom Kippur to be a national holiday? Not so fast

By Liam Hoare, February 2, 2012

Upon suggesting that Yom Kippur ought to be made a national holiday in France last month, Eva Joly - candidate for Les Verts - was briskly condemned by the left, the right and the far-right.


Netanyahu won Likud poll, but is more shackled now

By Anshel Pfeffer, February 2, 2012

This is not the way Benjamin Netanyahu planned his Likud leadership primary. It was all supposed to be over very quickly - a month or so of low-profile campaigning, voting day by the end of January, polling stations closed at 10pm. Then a swift tallying of his overwhelming majority, with everything wrapped up before midnight.


A fight over history's tragic truth

By Dovid Katz, February 2, 2012

Seventy years is the lifespan for latterday humans. It is also the years that have passed since Hitler's "Final Solution" Wannsee Conference.

In the half year beforehand, the Nazis saw how easy it was to find enthusiastic local killers in the parts of Eastern Europe they invaded in June 1941.


Human Rights Watch gets Egypt all wrong

By Robin Shepherd, January 26, 2012

Human Rights Watch (HRW) has just released its World Report 2012, in which it warns western governments not to ignore the popular will in the Arab world just because that has resulted in a massive victory for political Islam.

HRW is aware of the potential dangers for minority rights as well as of the possibility of a lurch back to authoritarianism but its thinking betrays a profound sense of co


Israeli leaders fear US Iran sanctions 'not enough'

By Anshel Pfeffer, January 26, 2012

The round of sanctions against Iran decided upon by the United States and the European Union over the past couple of weeks is unprecedented, but Israeli leaders are still not convinced that they will be enough to force the Iranian regime to forsake its nuclear ambitions.

A day after EU leaders voted to approve a package of sanctions forbidding the purchase of Iranian oil and petrochemical produ


Good-natured liberals become Iran apologists

By Emanuele Ottolenghi, January 19, 2012

Every further step Iran's quest for nuclear weapons takes, and any new piece of evidence documenting it, should concern good-natured liberals. As dedicated internationalists, they should decry the lasting damage such a development will do to the non-proliferation regime - a key element of the international order they sanctify.


Fissure opens in Whitehall

By Martin Bright, January 19, 2012

When I asked Nick Clegg at his joint press conference with Mahmoud Abbas about the increasingly combative nature of the UK government's language on settlements, I didn't expect him to escalate the rhetoric still further.