Media Week – Labor’s travel travails
February 19, 2016 | Allon Lee
The Australian newspaper gave excellent coverage to critics of pro-Palestinian activists pushing the NSW ALP conference to ban party officials from travelling to Israel on sponsored trips, or impose conditions requiring they spend equal time in Palestinian areas.
Israel struggles to land the Leviathan
February 17, 2016 | Or Avi Guy
Five years ago a massive offshore reserve of natural gas – appropriately named Leviathan – was discovered approximately 170 km. off the Israeli coast, approximately 4.5 km. underwater. Since then, attempts to tap into the gas field have stalled, as new challenges emerged at each step of the way.
Growing Aussie and Asian investment in the Israeli start-up scene
February 12, 2016 | Sharyn Mittelman
Israel is widely considered an international leader in entrepreneurship, technology and innovation, and it is said to have the highest density of start-ups per capita. Now Aussie and Asian businesses and investors increasingly want to be part of the Israeli start up action, as seen by the many recent announcements of new business partnerships with Israeli companies.
What 1961 can teach us about 2016
January 19, 2016 | Ahron Shapiro
It’s particularly worthwhile from time to time, in an effort to better understand the core issues in the conflict, to revisit key source materials and policy statements during the period after the 1948 War of Independence and before the Six Day War of 1967 – before the IDF controlled even a centimetre of land in the “occupied territories”.
Of these, then-Foreign Minister Golda Meir’s address to the Special Political Committee of the United Nations General Assembly on December 15, 1961 is surely a standout. Coming just 13 years after the creation of the state, Meir’s address serves as a crucial policy statement during this period in Israel’s early history.
Speaking Violence, Hearing Silence
September 27, 2015 | Ari Wenig
The hypocricy is almost breathtaking: pleading to the international media for an end to violence at the risk of “an intifada that we don’t want”, whilst simultaneously inciting Palestinians to do “everything in [their] power” to stop the Jews “defiling [the Al-Aqsa] with their filthy feet”, assuring them that “martyrs will be rewarded… by Allah”. The speaker was President of the Palestinian Authority, Mahmoud Abbas, and the bulk of the international media and political community responded with indifference.
In Gaza, some NGOs place water politics over public health
March 11, 2014 | Ahron Shapiro
Gaza’s water quality issues, due to years of overpumping from their coastal aquifers as well as other factors such as agricultural pollution, and sewage dumping, are well documented. However, efforts by some NGOs to implement what has been determined by experts to be the most effective solution – desalination – has been met by staunch opposition by some 30 Palestinian and pro-Palestinian organisations and NGOs. They made this clear in a position paper they issued on March 9 through the Palestinian water issue-focused NGO umbrella coalition EWASH. It’s enlightening to examine their reasons for opposing desalination, in their own words.
Israeli field hospital in the Philippines receives high praise
November 19, 2013 | Sharyn Mittelman
To date, 12 babies have been born in the Israeli field hospital set up in the city of Bogo at the northern end of Cebu Island on November 14 to provide medical assistance to the Typhoon ravaged region. Typhoon Haiyan struck on November 8 and is estimated to have killed at least 4,000 people and left 600,000 homeless.
New Huawei allegations – Iranian partner breaching US sanctions
October 31, 2012 | Sharyn Mittelman
There are new allegations regarding the Chinese telecommunication company Huawei, with Reuters reporting that an Iranian partner of Huawei, Soda Gostar Persian Vista, last year tried to sell embargoed American antenna equipment to an Iranian firm.
This latest report of breaching US sanctions, may further undermine Huawei’s concerted efforts to improve its image in Australia, following an Australian government decision in March this year to block Huawei from bidding on its National Broadband Network (NBN) due to national security risks.
In the workplace? In a car? Middle East grapples over women’s whereabouts
November 17, 2011 | Daniel Meyerowitz-Katz
As I wrote earlier this year, a great deal of the problems facing the Arab world as it stumbles towards democracy stem from a conservative culture that is inhibiting female participation in society.
How do you solve a problem like Pakistan?
November 9, 2011 | Sharyn Mittelman
Pakistan is a foreign policy conundrum for the West. While Pakistan has publicly been an ‘ally’ to the West in fighting al-Qaeda and supporting the war in Afghanistan, privately its intelligence agencies work with the Taliban and support terrorist organisations. In addition, Pakistan’s nuclear arsenal is considered by many to be unstable, and therefore poses a very real threat to international security should it end up in the wrong hands.