Anshel Pfeffer

‘Hizbollah has chemical capability’

By Anshel Pfeffer, October 10, 2013

As Syria appears to be about to lose its strategic arsenal, Hizbollah has been trying, at least rhetorically, to resurrect the threat against Israel.

In an interview with Saudi newspaper Al Watan on Sunday, Khaled al-Dhaher, a Lebanese MP, warned that Hizbollah has 200,000 missiles near the Syrian border, some of which can be equipped with chemical warheads.

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Rabbi Ovadia Yosef's death is political depth charge

By Anshel Pfeffer, October 10, 2013

As he did during his lifetime, Rabbi Ovadia Yosef, who passed away on Monday, will continue to unite the party he served as spiritual leader. For a while, at least.

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Tensions at top over ambitious Beersheva-EIlat Railway project

By Anshel Pfeffer, October 10, 2013

Last Sunday in Jerusalem, a ministerial committee authorised the construction of a 260km-long, fast railway line from Beersheva to Eilat.

The line will be the first high-speed track in Israel and is designed to cut the travel time from Tel Aviv to Eilat to two hours, as well as provide a cargo route that could become an alternative to the Suez Canal.

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Shas battles over Yosef successor

By Anshel Pfeffer, October 3, 2013

The deterioration in the health of 93-year-old Rabbi Ovadia Yosef has thrown his party, Shas, into a battle over who will succeed the spiritual leader.

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‘Hamas used Chinese bank to pay families of terrorists’

By Anshel Pfeffer, October 3, 2013

A hamas scheme to launder money in Chinese bank accounts has been revealed in an ongoing court case in the US.

The allegations emerged in a suit being brought against the Bank of China by the family of Daniel Weltz, a 16-year-old American killed in a suicide bombing in Tel Aviv in April 2006.

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Saudis and Bahrain ‘more worried than Israel’ about Obama’s Iran diplomacy

By Anshel Pfeffer, October 3, 2013

The beginning of a thaw in relations between Iran and the West is not only worrying Israel, it is also a matter of concern for Iran’s Arab neighbours.

Both Israel and several Gulf states are concerned that sanctions may be lifted without receiving clear and verifiable assurances that Iran is no longer pursuing nuclear weapons.

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With a smile, Rouhani has forced an Israeli strike off the table

By Anshel Pfeffer, October 3, 2013

The past two weeks at the United Nations General Assembly in New York have been a carefully choreographed dance between three performers.

In the first act, the American and Iranian presidents both set out the very basic parameters of a potential agreement on Iran’s nuclear pr+ogramme and warily made their first contact.

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Shas squabbles over successor to Ovadia Yosef

By Anshel Pfeffer, October 1, 2013

The deterioration in the health of 93-year-old Rabbi Ovadia Yosef has thrown his party, Shas, into a battle over who will succeed the spiritual leader.

Hospitalised at Hadasa Medical Centre for over two weeks now due to a blood pressure problem, doctors had to put the rabbi into a coma after his kidney and heart showed signs of failing.

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Assad will remain for years says senior member of IDF

By Anshel Pfeffer, September 24, 2013

A senior member of the IDF has argued that Syrian President Bashar al Assad is unlikely to be ousted any time soon.

In an interview last week with Israeli daily Yediot Ahronot, Major-General Yair Golan, head of the IDF’s Northern Command, predicted that “he will remain for years. I don’t see a force that can topple him tomorrow morning”.

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Syria's Assad will remain for years

By Anshel Pfeffer, September 24, 2013

A senior member of the IDF has argued that Syrian President Bashar al Assad is unlikely to be ousted any time soon.

In an interview last week with Israeli daily Yediot Ahronot, Major-General Yair Golan, head of the IDF’s Northern Command, predicted that “he will remain for years. I don’t see a force that can topple him tomorrow morning”.

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Can Iran's President Hassan Rouhani seduce Obama?

By Anshel Pfeffer, September 24, 2013

“Charm offensive” is the hackneyed phrase used in recent weeks to describe the intensive PR campaign being waged by Tehran on the Western media.

Small wonder that the office of Israeli Prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu could not resist responding with a cliche of his own about Iran spinning the press and spinning centrifuges that enrich uranium.

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Israelis advised Kenyans during Naorobi mall terror siege

By Anshel Pfeffer, September 24, 2013

Israeli counter-terrorism experts were on hand to advise the Kenyan security forces facing the Al Shabaab terrorists who killed over 60 people at a shopping mall in Nairobi this week.

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CIA arms US-backed Syrian rebels

By Anshel Pfeffer, September 17, 2013

While the US-Russia deal to dismantle Syria’s chemical-weapons arsenal may have put the plans for a military strike on hold, there are signs that a clandestine campaign by the US to arm the rebels on the ground via the CIA is gaining pace.

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Israel cautiously optimistic about Syrian deal

By Anshel Pfeffer, September 17, 2013

Israeli leaders were cautiously enthusiastic this week following the deal reached by the US and Russia to disarm Syria of its chemical weapons.

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Detention for illegal immigrants to Israel court ruling

By Anshel Pfeffer, September 17, 2013

In a rare and unanimous landmark ruling, an expanded panel of Israeli High Court judges voted to strike down a Knesset law that enabled the police and the Interior Ministry to detain illegal immigrants for up to three years without trial.

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Bulgaria to indict Lebanese Burgas bombing suspects

By Anshel Pfeffer, September 16, 2013

The Bulgarian government is planning to indict two Lebanese men suspected of carrying out the Burgas terror bombing last year and try them in absentia if they are not extradited.

Six people were killed in the suicide attack that took place on a tourist bus in the resort of Burgas in July 2012; five of them were Israelis.

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Turkey and Israel ‘will mend fences’

By Anshel Pfeffer, September 13, 2013

Turkish officials are predicting an imminent rapprochement between Ankara and Jerusalem. A senior official last week told the Turkish daily Zaman that he did “not see any political obstacle standing in the way of normalisation”.

This comes despite fury in Israel over Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s recent remarks that the Jewish state was behind the military takeover in Egypt.

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Does Israel have chemical munitions?

By Anshel Pfeffer, September 13, 2013

The current furore over the use of chemical weapons in Syria has also drawn attention to Israel’s alleged chemical capabilities.

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Egypt’s generals wary of sparking civil war

By Anshel Pfeffer, September 12, 2013

After arresting its leaders and killing hundreds of its supporters on the streets, the military-backed government in Egypt is now talking of disbanding the Muslim Brotherhood.

It is not clear, however, whether this a real threat or a ploy to block the Brotherhood from carrying out more mass demonstrations.

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Palestinians indicate talks are going nowhere

By Anshel Pfeffer, September 12, 2013

A flurry of contradicting statements and leaks from Palestinian officials on the ongoing talks with Israel has underlined the difficulties involved in making any progress in the negotiations, now in their second month.

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