A Daily Analysis
By Marc Schulman
February 4, 2009--Ceasefire Up in Air- Election Heats Up
There are reports today coming from Cairo that an agreement is about to be signed between Egypt and Hamas for a ceasefire that will last for a year and a half. Tonight the Egyptian Foreign Minister denied these reports. Today, Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak gave a very strong speech against the actions of Hamas in Gaza, claiming that Hamas was acting in the interest of Iran and not in the interests of the Palestinian people.
The election campaign heated up today, particularly between the Likud and MK Avigdor Lieberman's party, Israel Beitenu. Lieberman's gains are endangering Likud's chances of being the lead party. Members of Likud attacked Lieberman, both on ideological terms and on practical terms. Lieberman for his part said that he has no problem with MK Netanyahu, who he is close to, but with other members of the Likud party. Netanyahu himself has been careful not to attack Lieberman, even stating this evening that he would appoint Lieberman to an important roll if he was elected Prime Minister.
The polls that have shown a tightening of the race have forced Netanyahu to get out a campaign, something he as somehow avoided throughout the campaign. The Likud or someone else on the right has been engaging in negative phone campaigns. They have been making anonymous calls claiming that they are from Ashkelon, and if one is planning on voting for Minister of Foreign Affairs Livni, they should make sure they think wisely about what kind of choice they are making.