HEADLINES FROM THE HEBREW PRESS

18,07,04 HA’ARETZ 1. THOUSANDS DEMONSTRATE IN GAZA AGAINST ARAFAT; CONCERN OVER LOSS OF CONTROL IN GAZA. Emergency situation in Palestinian Authority, after 3 weekend kidnappings. Arafat’s men took control of Gaza television building. Abu Ala threatening to quit; Arafat declares that it would be rejected. Musa Arafat appointed as new security establishment commander. Arafat dismisses Ghazi Jabali as police commander. Demonstrators against reforms – identify with Dahlan. 2. SHARON VS. SHARON: FATHER APPROVED NEW SETTLEMENT, OMRI ATTEMPTING TO CANCEL IT. HATZOFEH 1. Palestinian Prime Minister Abu Ala submitted his resignation – Arafat refused to accept it. ANARCHY IN PALESTINIAN AUTHORITY. Palestinian Police commander Ghazi Jabali kidnapped on Friday in Gaza, at the beginning of a wave of kidnappings, the peak of which was the kidnapping of four French citizens. Ghazi was released two hours later, French citizens released yesterday morning. As a result, Palestinian National Security Council declared state of emergency. Yesterday afternoon, Abu Ala submitted his resignation. Arafat rejected his request and appointed Musa Arafat, his confidant, as national security commander. Last night, thousands demonstrated in Gaza streets against the appointment.


2. STORMY DISCUSSION IN UN GENERAL ASSEMBLY OVER HAGUE COURT’S DECISION ON THE FENCE – GILLERMAN: “WITHOUT ARAFAT – WE WOULDN’T NEED A FENCE.” 3. COALITION TALKS TAKING OFF. Today: Sharon and Peres to meet, meeting to be held with United Torah Judaism and Shas as well. Minister Poraz attacks: Likud is anti-Ashkenazi party. 4. TOMBSTONES IN NEW ZEALAND’S OLD JEWISH CEMETERY DEFACED. MA’ARIV 1. ANARCHY. Gaza systems collapsing. What began as localized event in Gaza Strip developed into complete loss of control by the Palestinian Authority. Wave of kidnappings carried out by gang of masked men led to resignation of Prime Minister, Parliament chairman and senior security establishment officials. Israel examining how new situation will affect disengagement. YEDIOT AHRONOT 1. Palestinian Authority collapsing; Abu Ala resigns. ANARCHY. Arafat did not accept PM’s resignation and declared state of emergency. Wave of kidnappings and demonstrations in Gaza. Sharon’s Bureau: This proves that there is no one to talk to, we must carry out disengagement. 2. PERES THREATENING TO TORPEDO NEGOTIATIONS. Will demand from Sharon: change guidelines and don’t give up on Shinui. Netanyahu: Leave Shalom at Foreign Ministry. Poraz: Likud racist against Ashkenazim. ______________________________ SUMMARY OF EDITORIALS FROM THE HEBREW PRESS Yediot Ahronot characterizes the current unsettled state of affairs in the Palestinian Authority as the start, “of the struggle for the day after the Israeli withdrawal from Gaza,” and suggests that, “The outbreak of anarchy attests not only to the fact that their countdown has already begun but to the fact that this time it is a war of life and death for the revival of the PA or the victory of Hamas.” The editors believe that, “The current anarchy is the combined result of the intentional internal chaos that Arafat has created up until now so as to prevent any other factor from strengthening itself alongside him and the systematic dismemberment of the PA’s preventative security bodies over the last four years by Israel.” The paper speculates that the impending Israeli disengagement from Gaza has forced the PA to seriously confront the need to finally impose order at home and urges the government not to intervene but, rather, to sit by and watch. Yediot Ahronot, in its second editorial, comments on the formal start of contacts between Likud and Labor on forming a national unity government and says that, “The picture, on the day that contacts are officially opened on establishing a new coalition, is completely blurred.” The editors suggest that Prime Minister Ariel Sharon’s position is not nearly as strong as it was in the wake of the last general elections and believe that, “There is no guarantee that Sharon will be the chef who writes the menu of the coalition that is to be formed according to his tastes, or whether everything will unintentionally stew until the next elections.” Hatzofeh accuses archrivals Shinui and Shas of caring more about seats at the Cabinet table than they do about their principles. The editors note that the ultra-orthodox Shas, which has previously vilified the disengagement plan, is now hinting that it could support the plan if it joins the government while the militantly secular Shinui is now wavering in its – previously strong – support for the plan if it is forced to leave the government in reto Shas’s joining it. The editors declare, “So Similar, so close, it’s unclear why the heads of these two parties – Rabbi Ovadia Yosef and Joseph Lapid – don’t sit down together and unite the two movements.” Yediot Ahronot, in its third editorial, wonders how Israel’s poorer families are coping with the current school holidays and will cope with the expenses of soon having to buy school supplies for their children.