The Day In Israel: Monday July 19th, 2010

The IDF is considering revoking a ban on Jews entering PA controlled areas in Judea and Samaria.

The army is considering revoking a ban on Jews entering West Bank cities that are under Palestinian Authority control, in view of significant improvement in security and in Israel’s coordination with Palestinian security services.

The Palestinian Authority is interested in having Israelis visit Palestinian-controlled West Bank cities and their environs, designated as Area A, because it could signal the resumption of trade and tourism, which would boost the Palestinian economy.

Israel and the PA are cooperating more closely on security matters now than they have been since the Oslo Accords were signed in 1994, an Israeli defense source familiar with Israeli-Palestinian ties over the past 15 years said last night.

“For the first time, the parties are operating on an equal basis – not as leader and follower, as it had been over the years,” the source said. “The main reason is that both sides have a shared enemy. The PA is concerned about Hamas no less than us, and is interested in improving its control on the ground to prevent Hamas from threatening its rule and the calm that has been achieved.”

Fatah-affiliated Al Aqsa Martyr’s Brigades terrorists must be licking their chops at the thought of being gifted opportunities to kidnap Israelis.

Updates (Israel time; most recent at top)

6:32PM: Australian opposition leader Tony Abbott – about whom I blogged about here – continues to display his staunch support for Israel.

Tony Abbott yesterday accused Labor of weakening the bipartisanship on Israel.

The Opposition Leader voewd a government led by him would never “overreact” to international incidents and said the Coalition’s support for Israel was “unshakeable”.

“Of course, the Israeli government from time to time makes mistakes — what government doesn’t from time to time make mistakes? — but Australians should appreciate that a diminished Israel diminishes the West; it diminishes us,” Mr Abbott said.

“I have to say it’s a little disappointing, given the deep affinity between the Australian people and the Israeli people, that the current Australian government has somewhat weakened our long-standing bipartisanship on Israel.”

Mr Abbott appeared to be referring to Labor’s expulsion of the Mossad station chief in retaliation for the Israeli intelligence agency’s use of counterfeit Australian passports in the Dubai assassination of Hamas leader Mahmoud al-Mabhouh in January.

He said a Coalition government would never support a one-sided UN resolution against Israel.

6:15PM: It has been released for publication that the IDF and Shin Bet  have arrested a cell of Hamasholes behind a shooting attack last month which killed policeman Shuki Sofer.

But we obviously had it coming.

One of the cell’s heads said in his interrogation that just two weeks before he embarked on the attack, his six-year-old daughter was hospitalized in Hadassah Medical Center in Jerusalem, where she had a tumor removed from her eye. The operation was funded by an Israeli organization. (YNET)

Walla reports that some of the terrorists in the cell were released from Israeli prisons just weeks before the terror attack.

They were clearly driven to despair by all of our goodwill gestures.

3:50PM: This next video brings forward many points I have raised on this blog before.

9:56AM: Yet another report that Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak has one foot in the grave, and one on a banana skin.

Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak is terminally ill, according to US and other Western intelligence agencies, The Washington Times reported on Monday.

Most Western intelligence agencies were said to have estimated that the Egyptian president is dying from terminal cancer in his stomach and pancreas. Earlier this month, Mubarak was reportedly treated in a hospital in France, and in March his gallbladder was operated on in Germany.

A Central European intelligence officer told The Washington Times that Mubarak will probably die within a year, before Egyptian presidential elections in September 2011.

“When I was in Cairo in May, it was interesting. People were mellow about the prospect of him being ill. Everyone understood the end was near; the estimates were 12 to 18 months,” Steven Cook, an Egyptian-affairs specialist at the Council on Foreign Relations, said to The Washington Times.

A senior US intelligence officer said: “We have access to, for lack of a better word, his court. We know he is dying, but we don’t know when he will die. You can be dying for a long time, by the way. Look at [former Cuban President Fidel] Castro.”

Sources told The Washington Times that the National Intelligence Council and the US Central Command are reportedly analyzing possible situations and power transitions after Mubarak’s death.

However, State Department spokesman, P.J. Crowley said in a briefing that “no one is looking past Mubarak. He is still the president of Egypt, and we rely on him and his government for the critical role they play in security and stability in the Middle East.”

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David Lange

A law school graduate, David Lange transitioned from work in the oil and hi-tech industries into fulltime Israel advocacy. He is a respected commentator and Middle East analyst who has often been cited by the mainstream media

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