To Read: Three Iran experts- Luers, Pickering, and Walsh- point out the limits of coercion in America's dealings with Teheran-
If the United States is to reach an agreement with Iran about its nuclear program, Washington will have to develop new approaches to thinking about Iran. The administration should recall JFK’s charge fifty years ago for Americans “not to see only a distorted and desperate view of the other side, not to see conflict as inevitable, accommodation as impossible, and communication as nothing more than an exchange of threats.” There is yet time for diplomacy, but the longer real negotiations are delayed, the greater is the risk of conflict in the increasingly violent environment of the Middle East. Delays could well result in a further loss of trust and misunderstanding and digging in on both sides. This in turn would make a mutually acceptable outcome more difficult.
Quote: "we have warned Mr. Snowden that any actions by him connected with harming Russian-American relations are unacceptable", Vladimir Putin trying to calm down the Snowden-related tensions between Russia and the US.
Number: 8, President Obama's approval ratings have dropped by 8 percentage points since last month.
To Read: Israel' Ambassador to the UN, Ron Prosor, describes how a bloc of Arab countries boycotted a UN entrepreneurial convention just because Israel was the co-host-
Most recently, on June 26, a group of Arab states boycotted a U.N. conference, co-hosted by the Israeli delegation, based on our December resolution. One would think that it's hard to find fault with bringing entrepreneurial innovation, creativity, and ingenuity to bear on some of the world's most pressing problems. Yet, the Arab bloc sought to undermine this event for one simple reason -- Israel was one of the co-hosts. It appears the Arab states would sooner keep their citizens shackled by hardship than accept the key to unlocking progress -- so long as Israel is the locksmith.
Quote: "If we can't delay this decision we need to act; take areas in the Israeli consensus like greater Jerusalem, Gush Etzion, Ma'aleh Adumim, Givat Ze'ev, Betar Illit etc., annex them into Israel and apply Israeli law on them", Likud Minister Israel Katz suggesting some provocative reactions to the EU decision.
Number: 1071, the number of new West-Bank housing units Israel is set to approve.
The Middle East
To Read: According to Turkish journalist Kadri Gursel, Turkey has been basing its foreign policy on a great big illusion-
After the onset of the Arab Spring, Turkey shaped its policy in the eastern Mediterranean on a fantasy of “Ikhwan [Muslim Brotherhood] internationalism” through which to create a new regional order hand in hand with other Sunni Islamist actors. This strategic approach would bestow Turkey with “game changing and proprietor of the change” roles to allow it to assume a superior position among its partners. The foreign policy makers in Ankara enunciated this wishful thinking on many occasions using a variety of different words.
Quote: "[The UN] has not seen a refugee outflow escalate at such a frightening rate since the Rwandan genocide almost 20 years ago", The UN's High Commissioner for Refugees, Antonio Guterres, commenting on Syria's refugee crisis.
Number: 5, the number of hours John Kerry and PA President Abbas spent together yesterday.
The Jewish World
To Read: Rabbi Gilad Kariv believes that Israelis still has a lot to learn from Diaspora Jewry-
Diaspora Jewry provides a constant moral and value-based reminder of what it means to live as a minority. In an era when Jewish sovereignty is required to exercise force, and has to a large extent become addicted to force, this reminder is more needed than ever.
Quote: "Right now we are not planning any legislative action in this matter", Polish PM, Donald Tusk, announcing that he is not going to lift his country's Kosher slaughter ban.
Number: 40, the percent increase of French Jews making Aliya in the past year.