Ed: 41: February/2016
What Netanyahu was actually saying - a two-state resolution is not possible "today" - is actually the view almost across the spectrum in Israel. Opposition leader Herzog - a smart and sincere man - thinks the same thing.
During my first trip to China in the summer of 1985, I visited English Corner in People's Park in Shanghai one Sunday afternoon. It's one of the places where young Chinese people used to practise their English with visiting foreigners. Officials from the university where I was teaching in Shanghai escorted me there, and a big crowd quickly gathered to talk with me - a tall, curly-haired foreigner - and pushed closer to shower me with questions.
The pathways to recruitment to ISIL are slightly different than in the past. In Indonesia, ISIL has been able to graft onto much of JI's social network, owing in large part to people such as Abu Bakar Ba'asyir and Abdurrahman Aman's early pledges of allegiance to ISIL. In addition to JI's mosques, madrassas and kinship networks, ISIL members have effectively used the prisons as epicentres of recruitment and radicalisation.
On a sunny summer day in 2002, in a picturesque European capital, delegates to a conference on Holocaust-related issues decided to go for a walk and see some tourist attractions, but local security officers "advised" the males in the group not to go out with kippot (skullcaps) visible, as this may be "provocative".
As the nuclear deal between Iran and the P5+1 goes into effect with the announcement of Implementation Day and the lifting of major international sanctions on Jan. 16, the huge challenge of making it work still lies ahead for the international community. While the deal's prospects will primarily be determined by Western deterrence against Iran, recent events preceding this new strategic era have eroded Western deterrence rather than strengthening it.
This fall and winter have seen many of us here in Israel consuming a miserable kind of reality TV: blurry clips of young Palestinian Muslims with knives seeking release in murder and martyrdom, lunging, stabbing, falling stricken to the ground, the action captured by cellphones or security cameras; an imam in Gaza waving a knife and calling on the faithful to render us into "body parts"; a fighter from the Islamic State, our new neighbour, warning us of the violence he and his comrades will inflict when they arrive.
Those who were hoping last year's nuclear deal would lead to positive change in Iranian politics and foreign policy can be assured that change does indeed appear to be occurring. Unfortunately for the world, however, virtually all change so far appears to be for the worse.
Even as the Iran nuclear deal and the potential for rapprochement between Teheran and the West have inspired countless op-eds, China's budding relationship with Iran has gone relatively unremarked upon. But on Jan. 23, Chinese President Xi Jinping became the first world leader to visit Iran after the deal. Xi stated that he sought to open a "new chapter" in China's relations with Iran. Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said, "The Islamic Republic will never forget China's cooperation during [the] sanctions era."