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IsraCast Archive | November-December 2005

HANUKKAH MIRACLE

IDF Chief Of Staff Halutz: 'Lieutenant Ori Binamo Paid With His Life In Foiling Palestinian Suicide Bomber'

IDF Commanders: 'We Hate To Imagine What Would Have Happened If Suicide Bomber Had Blown Himself Up Among A Crowd Of Israeli Kids At Hanukkah Event'

Security Officials: 'There Are Ten More Specific Terror Alerts At Present, But Palestinian Authority Does Nothing To Prevent Them'

During the holiday of Hanukkah, Israeli kids go on vacation and flock to many sites of entertainment. For Palestinian terrorists these are prime targets. At Tul Karem, one suicide bomber was intercepted with some fifteen kilos of explosives - as usual packed with pieces of steel to kill and maim as many Israelis as possible. Although the killer did not make it to the Tel Aviv, he still took a painful toll - the young IDF officer and his three men who stepped in to stop him.

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ELECTION CATCH-UP

Labor's Peretz Slumps to 19 Seats

Likud's Netanyahu Charges Sharon Is Hiding His Medical Condition

Kadima's Sharon Corrals Avi Dichter

The news that Prime Minister Ariel Sharon is about to undergo a minor heart procedure has not affected the latest campaign polls. In Labor, party leader Amir Peretz kicked off his campaign with the slogan 'Labor, the time has come!' But questions are being asked after Labor has dropped from 26 to 19 seats in the polls. In the Likud, Bibi Netanyahu charges that Sharon is not telling all about his health and challenges the PM to face him in a series of TV debates. Sharon declines and has now recruited highly rated Avi Dichter, the former Shabak security chief, to help take on Netanyahu and Peretz.

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MOSSAD ON IRANIAN BOMB

Mossad Director Dagan: 'Iran Is Capable of Acquiring Nuclear Independence In 2006'

'After Activating Its Centrifuges, Iranians Will Start Producing Enriched Uranium Within a Period Of Months'

'It Would Then Be Only A Matter Of Time Before Iran produced Nuclear Weapons, But International Sanctions Could Still Deter Tehran'

Maj. Gen.(res.) Meir Dagan, the chief of Mossad's Secret Service, has presented his annual assessment of Israel's state of security to the Knesset Foreign Affairs & Defense Committee. If not stopped, Iran will be able to start producing enriched uranium within months of reactivating its centrifuge process. But at the same time, Dagan was optimistic the international community could deter Tehran by imposing economic sanctions.

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ISRAELI SECURITY EXPERTS LAMPOON 'MUNICH'

Avi Dichter: 'There is Absolutely No Connection Between Spielberg's Film & What Really Happened'

Moshe Yaalon: 'Film Is Misleading It Places Palestinian Terrorists & Israelis Fighting Terror On Same Level'

Dennis Ross: 'Munich Is A Movie Not A Documentary'

At the Munich Olympics in 1972, Palestinian terrorists were responsible for the murder of eleven Israeli athletes. The Israeli government then instructed the Mossad Security Service to track down those involved in the deadly attack. Hollywood film-maker Steven Spielberg has now produced Munich that is based on the atrocity and its aftermath. Although the movie has yet to premier, it has triggered sharp criticism from both Israeli security experts and some American Jewish leaders. Israels Channel 10 TV carried a report from the U.S. on the reactions.

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ASHKELON & HAMAS-STAN

Dr. Dan Schueftan: 'Israel's New Security Zone Will Work Only In Short Run; More Radical Means Will Be Necessary To Halt Palestinian Rocketing of Ashkelon'

'Israelis Must Prepare For A Very, Very, Very Long Period Of Terrorism Because There Is No Responsible Leadership On the Palestinian Side'

'Anyone Who Expected The Roadmap To Work Must Have Been Very Naive'

In reaction to the latest Qassam rocketing of the Israeli town of Ashkelon, Israel is adopting a new security zone policy along the border of the Gaza Strip. Israeli artillery, aircraft and naval vessels will be stepping up their operations. However, Israeli forces will not re-enter the Gaza Strip, which was evacuated last summer. Israel is adopting new measures after a number of IDF troops were wounded when Qassams launched from Gaza slammed into the Ashkelon area again, this time hitting an army base. Dr. Dan Schueftan, a Middle East expert at Haifa University assessed various aspects of the situation with reporter David Essing:

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PALESTINIAN ROCKETING OF ASHKELON

Qassam Rockets From Gaza Strip Wound Five IDF Soldiers Near Ashkelon

Sharon Faces Greater Pressure To Take Decisive Action

Question: 'If Terrorists Are Trying To Hit Ashkelon Power Station Why Not Pull The Plug On Electricity Supply To Gaza Strip?'

The Palestinian rocketing of the Israeli town of Ashkelon continues without let-up. This time, five IDF soldiers have been wounded. The Qassam rockets are being launched from the Gaza Strip that Israel voluntarily evacuated last summer and from some of the former settlements that are within eyesight of the Ashkelon power plant. Actually, the power station supplies electricity to the Palestinians in Gaza. But not only the power plant and fuel depot in Ashkelon are at risk, the rockets could also hit an Israeli school or kindergarten. Prime Minister Ariel Sharon has been ordered to rest after his mild stroke but he is obviously going to have to take some hard decisions

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BIBI IS BACK

New Likud Leader Netanyahu Now Expected To Pull Likud Ministers Out Of Sharon Cabinet

Latest Polls Indicate Kadima's Lead Has Not Been Affected By Sharon's Mild Stroke

Prime Minister Expected To Chair Cabinet Session On Sunday After His release From Hospital

The Likud party has elected former Finance Minister Binyamin Netanyahu as new party leader. Netanyahu has pledged to join forces with runner up Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom and wrest the country's leadership from Prime Minister Ariel Sharon. But his Likud party is plagued with many serious problems. Initial polls show that the mild stroke has not harmed Sharon's lead in the election campaign. This is due to the doctors' diagnosis that the Prime Minister did not suffer any permanent damage and can return to a full workload after resting a few days at home.

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SHARON SENT HOME

Prime Minister Ariel Sharon: 'I Must Hurry Back To Work & Move Forward'

After spending a day and a half in Hadassah hospital for tests and treatment for a mild stroke, Prime minister Ariel Sharon is sent home by doctors to rest a few days before returning to full time work.

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SHARON'S MINOR STROKE

After Night In Hospital, Prime Minister Sharon To Undergo More Tests After Suffering Minor Stroke

From Hospital Bed, Sharon Telephones: 'Apparently I Overdid It, I Should Have Taken A Few Days Off'

Sharon's Minor Stroke Raises Major Questions In Election Campaign

Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's sudden collapse and hospitalization have sent new shock waves through Israel and the Middle East

The doctors are speaking optimistically about a full recovery for Prime Minister Ariel Sharon after he was rushed to the Hadassah Medical Center in Jerusalem after apparently losing consciousness. But in the midst of a bitter election campaign, the Israeli public will now be seeking clear-cut answers on the state of Sharon's health, now more crucial than ever after he single-handedly quit the ruling Likud to form the new Kadima party. Public opinion polls have consistently shown Kadima to have all other political parties far behind. However, in light of Sharon's illness, what will the next polls indicate?

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NO PERMANENT DAMAGE TO SHARON

Hadassah Doctors: 'Prime Minister Ariel Sharon has not Suffered Any Permanent Damage From His Mild Stroke'

'We Expect To Release Him on Tuesday For Ambulatory treatment'

'Ariel Sharon Will Be Able To Carry On Full Work Load Of Prime Minister'

After conducting a full series of medical tests at Hadassah Medical Center in Jerusalem, Ariel Sharon has been pronounced fit to carry on as prime minister. Listen to the comments of Dr. Yair Birenbaum, Hadassah's director general and and Professor Yaacov Napalstack.

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HAMASLAND vs. PALESTINE

Shabak Security Chief Diskin: 'I Won't Fall Off My Chair If Hamas Wins Palestinian Election Next Month'

Hamas Sweeps West Bank Towns In Local Palestinian Elections

IDF Steps Up Counter-Terror Operations After Terrorists Launch Rockets At Israeli Town of Ashqelon

Is Hamas, a terror organization bound on Israel's destruction, on the way to winning the Palestinian general election in January? Yes, says Shabak Security Chief Yuval Diskin who is quoted by the Israeli daily Maariv.Until now, the Israeli assessment was that Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas and his Fatah movement would come in first. In the Gaza Strip, despite Israel's evacuation last summer, terrorists there have escalated their attacks and again launched Qassam rockets at the Israeli town of Ashqelon to the north. The IDF is striking back with air raids, sonic booms and artillery.

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NEWSWEEK SHAKES UP ELECTION CAMPAIGN

Newsweek: 'Senior Sharon Official Says Prime Minister Would Agree To Palestinian State In 90% Of West Bank And A Jerusalem Compromise For Peace'

PM's Office: 'The Newsweek Report Is Categorically False'

Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's carefully managed election campaign has left all the other parties far behind. However, a Newsweek report has upset the Sharon applecart at least temporarily. The American magazine quoted Kalman Gayer, Sharon's pollster spelled out a far ranging compromise the Prime Minister was prepared to make for peace with the Palestinians.

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Like a fish - underwater breathing system

An Israeli Inventor has developed a breathing apparatus that will allow breathing underwater without the assistance of compressed air tanks. This new invention will use the relatively small amounts of air that already exist in water to supply oxygen to both scuba divers and submarines. The invention has already captured the interest of most major diving manufacturers as well as the Israeli Navy.

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LETTER TO DR. MOHAMED ELBARADEI

Question:With Time Running Out, Why Is the International Atomic Energy Agency Dragging ItsFeet Over Iran's Nuclear Weapons Project?

Israeli Officials Reject Media Stories About Prime Minister Ariel Sharon Ordering Pre-emptive Strike In March

At the time that Dr. Mohamed ElBaradei, the chief of the International Atomic Energy Agency was being awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in Oslo, London's Sunday Times carried a headline story that Prime Minister Ariel Sharon had issued orders to attack Iran's nuclear installations in March. The Israeli intelligence assessment is that by the end of March, Iran will have passed its point of no return on producing nuclear weapons. However, Israeli officials categorically rejected the press report.

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LIKUD DISINTEGRATION

Defense Minister Mofaz: 'I Have Decided To Quit Likud & Join Sharon's New Kadima Party'

'Sharon Has Promised That I Will Carry On As Defense Minister'

Likud Frontrunner Netanyahu: 'Shaul Mofaz Has Set A New Low For Political Opportunism'

Another leading Likud cabinet minister has bolted the party and switch to Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's Kadima party. Just days after Zachi Henegbi quit the Likud, Defense Minister Shaul Mofaz has done in the same in the middle of his campaign to become the new Likud leader.

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ISRAELI CHIEF OF STAFF ON IRAN

IDF Chief of Staff Dan Halutz: 'I believe the political means employed by the European countries and the Americans will not succeed in stopping Iran's nuclear weapons project.'

Iran Continues To Goad Israel: After recently declaring Israel 'should be wiped off the map', Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad now proposes that the Jews of Israel be resettled in Germany and Austria. Speaking in Saudi Arabia, the Iranian leader first rejected the 'claim' that six million Jews had been murdered in the Holocaust. Then he added, even if it were true: 'Germany and Austria should give some of their territory so that the Zionists could establish their state in Europe'

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SECURITY FENCE FIASCO

The failure to finish the West Bank security fence is costing Israeli lives, like the five people murdered at the Netanya Mall

Five more Israelis were murdered and fifty-five others were injured when a Palestinian suicide bomber blew up at the Netanya mall this week. There have been five suicide bombings since February when Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas announced the 'tahadiya' cease-fire. Numerous other attempts have been foiled by Israel's counter-terror operations and the West Bank security fence. Briefing the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, Deputy Chief of Staff Moshe Kaplinsky said not one terrorist has penetrated the security barrier and that it has saved Israeli lives.

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MIAMI & NETANYA

False Terror Threat At Miami Airport Reveals Complexity Of Coping With Suspects

Israeli Security Official: 'Despite Numerous Palestinian Suicide Bombings, Israeli Security Personnel Are Hesitant To Open Fire At Suspects For Fear of Killing The Innocent'

Security officials around the world are now confronting the dilemma of how to deal with suspects who may be deadly suicide bombers or simply innocent people. The cases at Miami Airport and previously in the London underground highlight one aspect of the problem. At the other end, is the Palestinian suicide bomber in Netanya who murdered five Israelis and wounded fifty-five others after two Israeli policemen did not open fire for fear of hitting innocent civilians.

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The dawn of cognitive technology

Cognitive technology is a new and evolving field which combines the interactive qualities of modern computers with the knowledge acquired by cognitive psychology to create tools that can preserve and improve our cognitive abilities. In this article, we chose to cover one of the pioneers in this field, the Israeli company CogniFit, which has developed a unique adaptive technology that enables its software to learn the users abilities, and based on this data, create a personalized cognitive training program.

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DRAMA IN ISRAELI ELECTION CAMPAIGN

Likud Chairman Hanegbi Quits Party & Joins Sharon

Labor Party Leader Peretz Slides In Polls After Netanya Bombing; Sharon Stable With 39 Seats

Likud Candidate Mofaz Distances From Sharon Charging PM Trying To Torpedo His Campaign

There has been more surprise in the Israeli election campaign. The chairman of the Likud, Zachi Hanegbi has quit and joined Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's new Kadima party. If this were not enough, yesterday a media leak disclosed that an Israel Police enquiry is to recommend that Hanegbi be indicted for political corruption while serving as Minister of Environment. In another development, the Palestinian suicide bombing that killed five Israelis and wounded scores of others in Netanya, has hurt Labor party leader in the public opinion polls.

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NETANYA SUICIDE BOMBING

Five Israelis Murdered & Fifty-Five Wounded By Palestinian Suicide Bomber

Two Security Personnel Were Killed While Confronting Terrorist, Saving Many Israeli Lives

Sharon Advisor Zalman Shoval: 'Israel Has No Choice But To Step Up Counter-Terror Operations To Defend Her Citizens'

A Palestinian suicide bomber has carried out another deadly attack in the Israeli seaside town of Netanya, murdering five Israelis and injuring fifty-five others. The Islamic Jihad terrorist from the West Bank was spotted before entering the crowded Sharon shopping center and apprehended by two security guards who were killed while trying to disarm the killer. Zalman Shoval, a senior advisor to Prime Minister Sharon, tells IsraCast that Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas (Abu Mazen) leaves Israel no choice but to step up its counter-terror operations

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IRANIAN BOMB

IDF Chief of Staff Dan Halutz: 'I Doubt That U.S. & European Diplomatic Effort Will Persuade Iran To Stop Its Nuclear Weapons Program'

PM Sharon: 'Israel Cannot Agree To Iran Becoming A Nuclear Power'

Shimon Peres: 'Ariel Sharon Is Best Man To Cope With Iranian Nuclear Threat & Palestinian Issue'

IDF Chief of Staff Dan Halutz says he does not expect the current international effort will dissuade Iran from halting its nuclear weapons program. And also today, Prime Minister Ariel Sharon declared: 'Israel could not agree that Iran will become a nuclear power'. The PM was speaking at a joint news conference with former Labor party leader Shimon Peres who endorsed Sharon as the best leader to face the Iranian nuclear threat and the Palestinian issue.

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Earthquakes - stopping the next big one

A system that could predict earthquakes has long been the Holy Grail of scientists trying to prevent the next catastrophe. Now a small Israeli company, backed by experts, is not only claiming to have discovered a method for accurately predicting earthquakes well before they occur, but also for preventing some of them.

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Israel anti-missile missile scores another direct hit

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ISRAEL & IRANIAN NUCLEAR THREAT

PM Sharon: 'Israel & The World Cannot Acquiesce In Nuclear Armed Iran'

Sharon's Apparent Message: 'The Notebook Is Open And The Hand Is Writing'

Israel Ponders Iranian Nuclear Threat As International Effort Peters Out

In four months time, Iran will pass the point of no return in its nuclear weapons project. Israel says the international effort lead by Britain, Germany and France is going nowhere as the Iranians renew their nuclear operations. The U.S. like Israel has been counting on the EU-3 and the International Atomic Energy Agency in Vienna to halt Tehran, but so far to no avail. Prime Minister Ariel Sharon has left no doubt that Israel is closely monitoring developments before deciding what to do about the Iranian threat 'to wipe the Jewish state off the map'. Sharon was speaking on the November 29th anniversary of the U.N partition of Palestine which leaded to the establishment of the modern day state of Israel in 1948.

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ELECTION UPDATE

Sharon’s Kadima Party Continues To Gain Strength At Expense Of Likud

Likud Game-Plan: ‘Polls Will Pick Up For Us Once We Finish Party Leadership Race’

Shimon Peres: ‘Labor Party Leader Peretz Is Unsuitable To Become Prime Minister’

Although the election campaign is barely underway, it is fast becoming the most dramatic in the state’s history. Voters and politicians are still reeling from Prime Minister Ariel Sharon’s move to bolt the right wing Likud and form the centrist party Kadima. The Likud may not be out but it is certainly on the ropes at this point of the campaign. And in left wing Labor, new party leader Amir Peretz is in the midst of his own political firestorm.

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The Scientist Who Discovered AIDS

In Israel, Prof. Robert Gallo Is optimistic about finding an HIV vaccine

'It is feasible that we'll get a successful vaccine against HIV'

'This will be a milestone, not just for AIDS but for other viruses as well'

The American scientist who discovered AIDS, Prof. Robert Gallo, said on his visit to Israel that there has been great progress in developing a vaccine against the disease, which kills millions of people every year. Since discovered in 1981, the virus has taken the lives of more than 25 million people around the world. At present, the vaccine is effective for three to four months, and has been tested successfully on mice, dogs and rabbits, and lately on monkeys. The results, according to Prof. Gallo, are promising. Prof. Gallo, who will receive an honorary award from Bar-Ilan university, was interviewed on Israel's Channel 2.

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MARCH DEADLINE FOR IRAN

IDF Gen. Zeevi-Farkash:'Diplomacy Has Until March To Halt Iran's Drive For Nuclear Weapons'

'U.S. Failure In Iraq Would Be Critical For Entire Region'

'Hezbollah Will Launch More Attacks From Lebanon Before U.N. Report On Hariri Assassination Is Released On December 15th'

Appearing at a closed-door session of the Kneset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, Maj.Gen. Aharon Zeevi-Farkash, the chief of IDF Intelligence Branch, has presented a detailed briefing. Gen. Zeevi-Farkash updated the committee on how IDF intelligence assesses latest developments in Iran, Iraq, Egypt, the Palestinian Authority and along the Lebanese border.

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PERES MAY BOLT LABOR FOR SHARON

Former Labor Leader Shimon Peres Rumored Heading For Sharon

Labor Leader Peretz May Now Offer Archrival Barak To Join His Team

Some key Israeli politicians are now playing musical chairs as Ariel Sharon's new Kadima party and newly elected Labor leader Amir Peretz prepare to square off in the election campaign. Shimon Peres is the big name, who may be headed to Kadima with some other Labor Knesset members. Such a step would hurt Peretz with some Labor voters.

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AMIR PERETZ - ISRAEL'S NEXT PRIME MINISTER?

Labor MK Yuli Tamir: 'If Elected, Amir Peretz Would Meet Immediately With Palestinian Leaders To Negotiate Roadmap'

'Peretz Will Make Socio-Economic Situation The Core Issue Of Election Campaign'

Cabinet Minister Sheetrit: 'Sephardi Voters Will Not Flock To Peretz Because He Was Born In Morocco'

It's still early days and it's still a long shot but Laborites are saying that Amir Peretz, the newly elected Labor leader, could win the March 28th election. The Peretz victory has galvanized the Labor party into action. Labor trails the Kadima party of Prime Minister Ariel Sharon by only six or seven seats in the latest polls. Labor MK Yuli Tamir, a close supporter of Peretz who is helping to run the campaign, is upbeat about Labor's comeback.

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SHARON BOOSTS LEAD

Kadima & Labor Gain, Likud Slides Further

Prof. Avishai Braverman: 'Amir Peretz Is Not A Comunist'

In the Israeli election race Sharon and Labor continue to soar, the Likud drops further. Labor party leader Amir Peretz has also acquired a glowing endorsement from Prof. Avishai Braverman , the president of Ben-Gurion University who has defended the economic policies of Peretz. David Essing has an update report and this background interview with the BBC Radio 's 'Pods And Blogs' .

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LIKUD BELIEVES SHARON IS BEATABLE

Likudniks: 'We Have Nowhere To Go But Up'

'Former Elections Resulted In Wide Polls Drawing Close By Election-Day'

Likud Race Turns Into Free For All

The Likud election for a new party leader is off and running. The Likud central committee is expected to select December 19th for the primaries to elect the man they want to replace Ariel Sharon who now heads the new Kadima party. The internal Likud campaign will obviously dominate until the new leader emerges to face Sharon and newly elected Labor leader Amir Peretz.

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SHARON BULLDOZER

Maariv Poll: 'Sharon Would Win 30 Knesset Seats To Only 15 For Netanyahu's Likud'

Netanyahu: 'I'm Not surprised By Poll, Israeli Voters Will Soon Wake Up & See That A Vote For Sharon Is A Vote For Labor'

The Sharon 'bulldozer' that erected the Likud party more than thirty years ago has now demolished it. Twenty-four hours after Sharon announced that he was quitting the Likud, a Maariv daily poll forecast that a Netanyahu-lead Likud would garner only 15 seats in the upcoming election. That's just half of the 30 for Sharon who is expected to be overall winner; Labor would come in second with 26. Netanyahu propelled the anti-Sharon drive in the Likud, eventually forcing the Prime Minister to quit because of what he called the 'unbearable' situation. The morning after, Netanyahu and the rest of the Likud have awakened with the Chinese proverb ringing in their ears: 'Beware of ever getting your wish!'

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SHARON READY TO EVACUATE MORE SETTLEMENTS

It has been a dramatic day in Israel. Shortly after Prime Minister Ariel Sharon announced that he was quitting the ruling Likud party and heading for an early election at the head of a new centrist party, Hezbollah guerrillas in south Lebanon launched one of their heaviest attacks in years. Sharon has held a news conference spelling out why he has quit the Likud and how he views contacts with the Palestinians.

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POLITICAL EARTHQUAKE ROCKS ISRAEL

PM Sharon: 'I'm Quitting Likud, Forming New Party & Going To Early Election'

State President Katzav: 'The State Interest Is To Hold Early Election As Soon As Possible'

Bibi Netanyahu Considered Frontrunner For Likud Leadership, But Some Five Other Candidates Are In The Running

Although expected, Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's resignation has sent shock waves through the Jewish state. In Jerusalem, Sharon informed state President that he had lost his parliamentary majority, was quitting the ruling Likud party and forming a new centrist party to run in the early election. Election- day is expected in March. The Likud accused Sharon of violating its 'Land of Israel' ideology and eventually forced Sharon's resignation and the race is now on for his successor as party leader.

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SHARON'S DISINFORMATION

Sharon Sources:'The Prime Minister Tends To Bolting Likud & Forming New Party'

Ariel Sharon Apparently Waiting For Last Word From Likud Opponents Before Deciding

Outgoing Labor Cabinet Ministers: 'Our Partnership In Sharon Cabinet Did Good Work'

'Will he or won't he?' That is the question being debated non-stop by the Israeli media and in conversations between Israelis. Prime Minister Ariel Sharon spent the Sabbath secluded with his top aides at his Negev ranch to discuss whether or not to quit the Likud and form a new centrist party. The latest leaks from Sharon quarters are that the Prime Minister 'tends' in favor of bolting the Likud in light of the internal opposition he faces. But is this genuine or perhaps a campaign of scare tactics being waged by the Prime Minister?

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QUO VADIS ARIEL SHARON?

Prime Minister Ponders Whether To Carry On In Likud Or Quit & Form New Centrist Party

Latest Opinion Poll Indicates New Sharon Party & Labor Would Both Win 28 Knesset Seats

Netanyahu Lead Likud Would Plummet To Only 18

Within a couple of days Prime Minister Ariel Sharon is expected to announce whether he will carry on as Likud leader or quit to form a new rival party in the upcoming early election. Now spending the weekend at his Negev ranch, Sharon has not given any hint of what he'll do. The latest poll in the Yediot Ahronot newspaper indicates the Likud would crash without Sharon and serves to strengthen the Prime Minister's hand in the tug of war with his rebellious party.

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ISRAELI ELECTION IN LATE FEBRUARY OR MARCH

Prime Minister Sharon & Labor Party Leader Peretz Agree On Early Election In Late February Or March

Likud Rebel: 'Sharon Seeks Our Democratic Approval In Order To Govern As A Dictator'

Prime Minister Will Reportedly Decide over The Weekend Whether To Continue As Likud Leader Or Form a New Centrist Party

Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and new Labor leader Amir Peretz have met to agree on an early election in late February or March. By Monday, representatives of the two parties are to decide upon the exact date. Meanwhile in the Likud, the standoff between Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and his opponents has reached fever pitch. Sharon will return to his Negev ranch this weekend to decide whether to lead the Likud into the upcoming election or to jump ship and form a new party in light of the fierce opposition inside the Likud to his Palestinian policy such as the Gaza withdrawal. At an urgent session of the Likud Knesset caucus, Sharon and the MKs failed to reach a compromise.

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ISRAELI-PALESTINIAN SECURITY DEAL

Defense Minister Mofaz: 'Israel Will Have Control Over Border Crossings And Safe Passage Route Between Gaza & West Bank'

Likud MK Netanyahu: 'Israel Has Capitulated To U.S. Secretary Of State Condoleezza Rice On National Security'

Israeli Mayors Adjacent To West Bank: 'We Demand Red Dawn Early Warning Systems For Fear Of Qassam Rockets'

Israel and the Palestinian have agreed on a security deal following Israel's recent withdrawal from the Gaza Strip. After weeks of fruitless bargaining, U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice pressed the two sides into hammering out an accord. However, Israeli critics warn that it will put Israeli civilians at risk.

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THE PERETZ EFFECT

Peretz Sources: 'New Labor Party Leader Will Not Be Manipulated By Prime Minister Sharon Nor By Labor Has Beens'

'Peretz Has Already Launched His General Election Campaign Clashing Head-on With PM Sharon'

Likud Rebels: 'Likud Must Now Unite & Resolve Sharon-Netanyahu Leadership Feud'

The stunning victory of Amir Peretz, the fiery Histadrut union boss who now leads the Labor Party, has shaken up Israeli politics. Both political friends and foes are reassessing what the implications are for their personal and their parties' futures. Peretz sources promise the new Labor leader is waging 'a new style of politics' that both his Labor party and Sharon's Likud will have to get used to. Peretz is taking the battle to Sharon by threatening to bring down the government by supporting a no-confidence motion in the Knesset on Wednesday if the PM does not meet with him before then to discuss the date for an early election. Meanwhile, Labor cabinet ministers also appeared worried about Peretz running a one-man show.

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SHARON & RICE CLASH OVER HAMAS

PM Sharon: 'We Will Not Help Hamas Which Murder Jews, Even If They Participate In Palestinian Elections'

Secretary of State Rice: 'After Elections It Will Be Easier To Disarm Hamas By Pressure From Entire International Community'

Visiting U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Prime Minister Ariel Sharon have differed over the participation of the Hamas terror organization in the Palestinian elections set for January. At the PM's office in Jerusalem, Sharon said Israel will not interfere in the Palestinian elections but neither will it coordinate with the Palestinians if Hamas is allowed to run. Secretary Rice contended that the experience in northern Ireland and Angola had proved that it would be easier to force Hamas to disarm after the elections due to international pressure.

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CLINTON & ARAFAT'S COLOSSAL BLUNDER

An Estimated Two-Hundred Thousand Israelis Gather In Tel Aviv's Rabin Square To Remember Assassinated Prime Minister

Former U.S. President Clinton: 'There Has Not Been A Week I Have Not Thought of Him And Missed Him'

New Labor Party Leader Peretz: 'I Pledge To Follow In The Path Of Yitzhak Rabin And Return To Oslo And End the Occupation'

An estimated 200,000 Israelis gathered in Tel Aviv's Rabin Square at the site where the former Prime Minister was assassinated on November 4th 1995. Among those attending was former U.S. President Bill Clinton and his wife, U. S. Senator Hillary Clinton and their daughter Chelsea. The U.S. President and the Israeli Prime Minister had become very close friends and Clinton, with tears in his eyes at times, spoke movingly about Rabin and the ultimate price he paid in his heroic quest for peace with the Palestinians.

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LABOR FINALLY STARTS WORKING

New Party Leader Peretz: 'I Plan On Winning Next Election'

Consultations To Start Next Week On Early Election Date, Possibly In March

Sharon Sources: 'Peretz Is Meretz' (Far Left Party)

Incoming Labor Party leader Amir Peretz has received a rousing welcome from Labor Knesset Members after his surprise victory over Shimon Peres. The Labor convention is now set to convene within three weeks to vote on bolting the coalition government of Prime Minister Ariel Sharon. Peretz is also due to see Sharon next week to discuss a date for an early election, possibly in March.

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EARLY ELECTION LOOMING IN ISRAEL

Victorious Labor Leader Amir Peretz: 'I Will Pull Labor Party Immediately Out Of Sharon's Government'

In Stunning Upset, Union Leader Peretz Defeats Shimon Peres For Labor Party Leadership

Shimon Peres Challenges Close Election Result; PM Sharon To Meet Peretz On Sunday

Amir Peretz is the new leader of Israel's Labor party. Peretz, the head of the powerful Histadrut Federation of Labor narrowly defeated the incumbent Shimon Peres in the Labor party primary. The Histadrut leader garnered 42% of the vote to 40% for Peres who was the front-runner during the campaign but Peres has challenged the results. Peretz, who ran on a strong socialist platform, declared his first goal is to take Labor out of the government coalition as soon as possible. In congratulating Peretz, Prime Minister Sharon invited the victor to meet on Sunday.

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SHARON STARTLES LIKUD

Channel One TV: 'Sharon Has Decided To Bolt Likud & Lead New Party In Early Election Next April-May'

Likud Rebels: 'Sharon Trying To Scare Us Into Submission'

Labor Expected To Call On Shimon Peres To Carry On As Party Leader

Is Prime Minister Ariel Sharon about to quit his ruling Likud party, call an early election and then join the race as head of a new Centrist Party? This has been bandied about for some time after the Likud opposed his recent Gaza withdrawal and now Channel One TV has reported that Sharon has made up his mind to do so. Officially, Sharon's spokesman has denied the TV report. Meanwhile the Labor party, Sharon's left wing coalition partner, is expected to vote for Shimon Peres to carry on as its leader.

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SHARON REJECTS U.S. PRESSURE OVER HAMAS

PM Sharon: 'Israel Will Do All It Can To Prevent Hamas Terrorists Participating In Upcoming Palestinian Election'

MK Steinitz: 'Jerusalem Must Say No To U.S. Secretary Of State Rice'

MK Eitam: 'It Would Be Like U.S. Negotiating With Al Qaeda'

Prime Minister Ariel Sharon has rejected American pressure to allow the Hamas terror organization to participate in the Palestinian election in January. Sharon was addressing the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, shortly before the arrival of U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, who has been pressing Jerusalem to cooperate with the participation of Hamas. Right wing MKs contend that to do so would be similar to the U.S. agreeing to negotiate with Al Qaeda.

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OLDEST CHURCH EXTREMELY IMPORTANT FOR CHRISTIANS

The Vatican Ambassador To Israel Says The Discovery Of The First Church In Israel Is Extremely Important For All Christians Of The World

The church was discovered in the Megiddo high-security prison

considered by the archaeologists to be the oldest church in the world

Israel's Channel Two TV has reported that excavators at the Megiddo high-security prison, 10 Km west of the town of Afula, have discovered ruins of what seems to be the remains of a church dating back to the third or fourth century CE (AD). The archaeologists consider it to be the oldest church in Christianity.

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ISRAEL REFLECTS ON YITZHAK RABIN

Likud Cabinet Minister Olmert: 'Rabin's Oslo Move Was A Courageous Step That Influenced Sharon's Recent Disengagement'

Former Shabak Officer: 'I Don't Believe In Conspiracy Theory, But Maybe New Inquiry Should Be Conducted'

Four Out Of Five Israelis: 'Another Political Assassination Is Likely'

November 4th marks the tenth anniversary of the assassination of Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin. It is time of memorial services and political soul-searching in the Jewish state which still confronts the same threats and dilemmas as it did ten years ago. Where has the country been since then and where might it be today, if Rabin had survived?

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IsraCast Archive | November-December 2005

IsraCast Archive