Outlook (06-10-2006) Rice tour may fail in Mideast peace mission by Vu Thu Ha As US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice tours the Middle East this week, she again receives an old and clear message from her Arab counterparts: solving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is of great significance to the region. Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Saud al-Faisal even compared the decades-old conflict with "a disease on the body" which attracts "other diseases to attack that weakened body", hence further destabilising the region. Both the Egyptian and Saudi foreign ministers made it clear that they hoped renewed US efforts would restart the stalled peace process. It appears that Arab countries are trying to remind Rice that, to get their backing, the US needs to show its willingness to work on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. And it would seem that Rice is working on it well. As part of her agenda, she has been holding talks with Palestinian President Mahmud Abbas and Israeli Prime Minister Ehud … [Read more...] about Rice tour may fail in Mideast peace mission
Explain israel gaza conflict
The July-August war in Gaza drew international condemnation for a number of reasons, but one episode proved more deadly than any other: an Israeli air and artillery bombardment on Aug. 1 that killed 150 people in a matter of hours. Six weeks on from the war, with the toll of destruction still being counted, there is deepening unease about what took place that day, especially over whether too much force was used. Some legal experts say a war crime may have been committed. The events unfolded just as a three-day ceasefire was supposed to come into force. Hamas militants emerged from a tunnel inside Gaza and ambushed three Israeli soldiers, killing two of them and seizing the third. To rescue the soldier - dead or alive - and ensure Hamas could not use him as a hostage, the Israeli army invoked what is known as the "Hannibal directive", an order compelling units to do everything they can to recover an abducted comrade. What ensued was a furious assault on a confined area on the eastern … [Read more...] about Did Israel’s ‘Hannibal directive’ lead to a war crime in Gaza?