A Surprising Proposal from Israel

As Jerusalem leaders watch developments in the Middle East and on Palestinian streets, one high ranking Israeli Knesset member has signaled to Egypt that Cairo leaders could renew their mediation efforts between Israel and Hamas. This comes as a surprise because Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu would rather downplay any contacts that Israel might have with Hamas. During a briefing at the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs, MK Ronni Bar-On, Chairman of the Israeli Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee and a member of the Kadima opposition party, spoke to journalists and diplomats. He reflected on Egypt's previous mediation role in freeing Israeli POW Gilad Shalit.  For five years, a Hamas-affiliated clan was holding Shalit in an unknown location in the Gaza Strip until he was freed on October 18, 2011, as part of a prisoner exchange.  Many in Israel were concerned that terrorists with blood on their hands, who were released from Israeli jails during the exchange,...(Read Full Post)