TO-ing and FRO-ing in the MIDDLE EAST

 

 

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“Abbas Takes Defiant Step, and Mideast Talks Falter.”

 

 

 “Bill Clinton sticks his foot in Syrian quagmire.”

 

 

Going out on a limb, Pope Francis met to pray with Israeli and Palestinian leaders. The Rev. Thomas Reese, a veteran Vatican analyst for the National Catholic Reporter noted “In the Middle East, symbolic gestures and incremental steps are important.”

 

 

“Palestinians to walk away from peace talks.”

 

 

“Powers seek ‘first-step’ nuclear deal with Iran in Geneva talks.”

 

 

“Rouhani’s victory in 2013 is the Iranian equivalent to Obama’s victory in 2008: an electorate that voted overwhelmingly for hope and change, understanding that the process will be a marathon, not a sprint,” said Reza Marashi, research director at the National Iranian American Council in Washington.

 

 

[U.S. Secretary of State John] Kerry told reporters he was flying home to Washington to meet with President Obama to reassess the peace negotiations and whether there was a path forward. “There are limits to the amount of time and effort that the United States can spend, if the parties themselves are unwilling to take constructive steps in order to be able to move forward.”

 

 

“Syria chemical arms: ‘Global red line’ crossed – Kerry”

 

 

“For U.N. Chief, a Dance of Diplomacy Is Halted by a Misstep. Ban Ki-moon… choreographed a precise diplomatic sequence on Syria that relied on others to perform their roles equally precisely. The choreography did not go as planned, and Mr. Ban stumbled under the spotlight.”

 

 

Women in Saudi Arabia: Unshackling themselves

 

 

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