Any agreement the Palestinian Authority might reach with Israel would be subject to significant changes, a senior Hamas official has told the American newspaper The Forward.Moussa Abu Marzouk said in an interview to be published next Friday that if Hamas came to power, any treaty would be an interim truce, a hudna, not a permanent accord. This would be the case even if a referendum ratified the deal.In recent weeks, Hamas has held a number of election campaigns for the group's political bureau - in Gaza, in prisons and in regional councils abroad.
Marzouk's statements are seen as a message to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu not to advance the peace talks with the PA, because he can only "do business" with Hamas.
Abu Marzouk's remarks underline Hamas' stance that it considers itself to be at perpetual war with Israel so long as the Jewish state continues to exist.
They are significant in that they underscore the growing weakness of longtime politburo-chief-in-exile Khaled Mashaal rise of Hamas as the ruling power in Gaza.
Mashaal has tentatively accepted the notion of a state on the 1967 borders, and offered PA chairman Mahmoud Abbas a one-year mandate for negotiations with Israel – but has been effectively overridden Hamas leaders in Gaza.His remarks echo previous statements by the top Hamas leaders in Gaza – Ismael Haniyeh and Mahmoud al-Zahar – than any peace agreement with Israel would only serve as a "prelude to war."
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu launched an unexpected attack this week on the world’s six major powers led by President Barack Obama over how they were conducting nuclear talks with Iran. The attack underscored the fact that relations between the Israeli and U.S. leaders are as bad as they ever were, just as the presidential election in the United States gets into full swing.
There is no doubt that, when it comes to the all important issue of Iran, the Israeli leader prefers the position held by Mr. Romney. Indeed, it was the former Massachusetts governor who last year uttered the line that in his Mideast policies, Mr. Obama had “thrown Israel under the bus.”
The United States, France and 13 other nations demanded Thursday that Syria immediately cease military operations against rebel forces and allow unfettered deployment of U.N. observers, suggesting that use of force will be considered if Damascus fails to comply.In the meantime, Juppe said the U.N. observer force should have several hundred members and should be equipped with modern surveillance equipment and independent transportation, even if it is unarmed. Its patrols should be allowed to travel anywhere in Syria without prior notice or government authorization, he said at a news conference.In New York, U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, concerned about the faltering cease-fire, recommended that the Security Council approve the deployment of 300 unarmed observers to monitor the truce negotiated by Annan.Meanwhile, U.S. Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta told Congress, “It’s clear that the only way the United States would get involved militarily is if there’s a consensus in the international community.”“The plan of Annan is a failure since the beginning,” said Col. Malik al-Kurdi, an officer with the rebel Free Syrian Army speaking by telephone from a refugee camp in Turkey. “How can the U.N. send observers after over a year of violence? What are they going to find out, when everything is known to the world?”
Scientists and Peruvian officials are investigating a mass die-off of hundreds of dolphins along the South American country's coast.
A total of 877 dolphin carcasses have been counted recently along the shore in the northern regions of Piura and Lambayeque, Deputy Environment Minister Gabriel Quijandria said Thursday.
An analysis of the beached dolphins' internal organs hasn't found the sort of symptoms that experts have seen in other cases when dolphins have been affected by seismic tests, Quijandria said in a radio interview.
He said experts are studying whether the animals could have succumbed to a virus. "So far, it's the most probable hypothesis, and it isn't the first time it's happened. There have been cases in Peru, in Mexico, the United States," Quijandria said.
It is the most powerful federal agency you’ve never heard of -- and lawmakers from both parties on Thursday vowed to keep abreast of its astonishing growth and rein it in, if necessary.
The Office of Financial Research, or OFR, was created by the Dodd-Frank financial services overhaul that President Obama signed into law in July 2010. Technically housed under the Treasury Department, the agency has until now received its funding not from the Congress, but directly from the Federal Reserve.
...a close reading of the law the president signed provides no limit on the growth of OFR’s budget, nor on the taxes the agency can impose on big banks to fund it.
Detractors call it "the CIA of financial regulators,” and conjure "Orwellian" visions of "an omniscient Soviet-style central risk manager."
The agency’s official mission is to collect financial data and funnel it to another Dodd-Frank creation: the Financial Stability Oversight Council. These agencies were designed with the idea of preventing another systemic shock of Lehman Brothers magnitude.
Toward that end, OFR was invested with virtually unlimited subpoena power. It can compel just about any company in America to turn over to the federal government sensitive internal data, even proprietary information.
“You're able to tax corporations without any oversight by the U.S. Congress,” said Rep. Steve Pearce, R-New Mex. “Our Constitution is pretty clear, and so if we're a little scratchy on our side, just understand it's because you're conducting things that we feel like are completely unconstitutional.”
With all that is going in Washington these days some things don’t make the news the way they should. Fourteen days ago President Obama issued an Executive Order that you should know about. This order gives an unprecedented level of authority to the President and the federal government to take over all the fundamental parts of our economy - in the name of national security - in times of national emergency.
This means all of our water resources, construction services and materials (steel, concrete, etc.), our civil transportation system, food and health resources, our energy supplies including oil and natural gas – even farm equipment – can be taken over by the President and his cabinet secretaries. The Government can also draft U.S. citizens into the military and force U.S. citizens to fulfill "labor requirements" for the purposes of "national defense." There is not even any Congressional oversight, only briefings are required.
By issuing this as an Executive Order the President puts the federal government above the law, which, in a democracy, is never supposed to happen.
As President and Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces, he has the Constitutional authority to issue executive orders. And while similar orders have been made before by presidents from Eisenhower and Reagan to Clinton and George Bush – it has never been done to this extent.
It is still unclear why this order was signed now, and what the consequences are for our nation – especially during times of peace. This type of Martial Law imposes a government takeover on U.S. citizens that is typically reserved for national emergencies, not in a time of relative peace.