News and Analysis (1/27-28/07)

King Abdullah offers Palestinian factions an opportunity “to discuss their differences without any intervention from outside parties:”

·        Palestinian Rivals Welcome Saudi Talks To Halt Violence (AFP)

“[S]ome of the worst clashes last week were between Christian groups:”

·        Lebanon Faces Prospect Of Civil War: While Beirut Was Quiet Sunday, the Threat of More Sectarian Violence Kept the City on Edge (Christian Science Monitor)

Pelosi visit signals shift “from quiet disagreement to blunt accusation:”

·        Pakistan Faces a Less-Friendly US Congress: A New Bill Underscores Lawmakers’ Displeasure with a Country that Is a Key Bush Ally in the War on Terrorism (Christian Science Monitor)

Reports American “civilian” deaths are in some cases mercenary soldiers, the real significance of the “Civilian Reserve Corps” in the State of the Union address:

·        Our Mercenaries in Iraq: The President Relies on Thousands of Private Soldiers with Little Oversight, a Disturbing Example of the Military-Industrial Complex (LA Times)

Former Senator from South Dakota says lobbyists are impeding reform:

·        The Hidden Cost of Free Congressional Trips to Israel: Branded As ‘Educational,’ These Trips Offer Israeli Propagandists an Opportunity to Expose Members of Congress to Only Their Side of the Story  (Christian Science Monitor)

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