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In a welcome development, religious Jews threw rocks at Arabs in the Simon the Just neighborhood of Jerusalem. The neighborhood land was properly purchased by religious Jews—not Zionists—in 1876, but Arabs expelled the Jewish residents from it in 1936 and 1947. Arab claims to the neighborhood date to the time between the Jordanian occupation in 1947 and Israeli liberation in 1967. This land never belonged to Arabs, but now is claimed for their state.

The dog-bites-man news stories were not as prominent in the media: Arab children hurled rocks at Jewish police in Ras el Amoud, near Jerusalem.

Hillary Clinton called Netanyahu to deliver an extremely impolite rebuke over the planned construction in Ramat Shlomo, Jerusalem.

It remains a mystery why Clinton did not instead push Abbas to accept the plans. Everyone understands that they won’t be carried out for years, if ever. Abbas is hugely dependent on US aid and political support. The PA is a burden on the US, while Israel is an ally.

So why push Netanyahu?

The European Court of Human Rights struck a harsh blow to the Palestinian right of return to Israel. The authoritative court ruled against Greeks who sought to regain their property in Northern Cyprus, which they had been forced to leave in an exchange of populations—the same kind of exchange the world refuses to sanction in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

No Palestinian leader can forfeit his people’s right of return. A peace treaty with Israel is impossible, but a Palestinian state can be established de facto through agreements on specific issues with Israel, which would leave the right of return unresolved.

Egypt’s Minister of Energy signed an agreement with his Russian counterpart to build a nuclear power station in Egypt. With significant gas resources and major hydroelectric projects, Egypt has no need for peaceful nuclear energy.

For years, Egypt has run a low-profile military nuclear program. It cannot afford nuclear inferiority to Iran.

As in Bushehr, Egypt can use its reactor to harvest plutonium for nuclear bombs.

March 2010
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