A Daily Analysis
By Marc Schulman
July 25 , 2007 Strike Begins, ends, Arab Foreign Minister in Israel to Promote Peace Plan
Update 11:PM The treasury and the Histradrut reached a tentative agreement and the strike has been suspended for one week. There will be a 3% increase in wages in 2008 and 2% in 2009. Well the strike began, and now real negotiations have begun. The Ministry of Finance has offered a 3% raise, while the Histadrut labor union has reduced its demand to 5%. Hopefully by the time you read this, they will have reached an agreement without closing the airport, which is still scheduled for tomorrow morning.
The Foreign Ministers of Egypt and Jordan came for a visit to Israel today, not as representatives of their respective countries, but as representatives of the Arab League. They are in Israel to promote the Arab League Peace initiative. Minister of Foreign Relations Tzpi Livni was interviewed on London and Kirshenbaum today and spoke out forcibly for furthering the peace process. She gave four reasons she felt it has a chance of succeeding. First, the current Palestinian government (at least the one in the West Bank) wants it. Second, most of the Arab states for reasons of their own want an agreement reached between Israel and the Palestinians and stand ready to support such an agreement. Third, she believes that the overwhelming majority of the Israeli public has come to a conclusion that it is not in Israel interest for the peace process to stall. Time is not on IsraelÕs side. Finally, she believes that the world community will be supportive of any agreement reached. Livni believes that this opportunity should not be missed and the current government, with all its difficulties, can pursue that agreement.
Prime Minster Olmert and Michael Lindenstauss, the State Comptroller, presented an absurd show in the Knesset today at the meeting of the Committee of State Investigation. At the meeting Olmert accused Lindenstrauss of turning his office into the laughingstock of Israel. Lindenstrauss, on the other hand, stated that Olmert's actions as Minister of Trade were wrong and he was not allowed to give favors to his friends.
It has been two years since the Gaza pullout. Israel Television Channel 10 presented the statistics of the two years before and the two years since the pullout