"American Jewish publications have received numerous proposals in recent days from senior Palestinian officials to interview Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas who will be arriving in New York next week to attend the United Nations General Assembly. The Palestinians hope to utilize Abbas' trip to carry out what they describe as a 'smiles & appeasement campaign' among America's Jewish community, in efforts to raise sympathy and support among US Jews... The non-profit organization [The] Israel Project, which provides information on the Middle East, was planning to hold a special dinner in Abbas' honor during his visit." (Palestinian officials launch 'smiles campaign' in US Jewish media, Shlomo Shamir, Haaretz, 17/9/10)
Supping with the devil...
"About TIP: The Israel Project (TIP) is an international non-profit organization devoted to educating the press and the public about Israel while promoting security, freedom and peace. The Israel Project provides journalists, leaders and opinion-makers accurate information about Israel. The Israel Project is not related to any government or government policy. Our team of trusted Middle East experts and former reporters provides journalists with fact sheets, backgrounders and sources. TIP regularly hosts press briefings featuring leading Israeli spokespeople and analysts that give journalists an opportunity to get information and answers to their questions face-to-face. By providing journalists with the facts, context and visuals they need, TIP causes hundreds of millions of people around the world to see a more positive public face of Israel. This helps protect Israel, reduce anti-Semitism and increase pride in Israel... Through its Jerusalem office, TIP operates 'Intellicopter' tours - two-and a-half-hour guided helicopter tours with expert guides that give reporters a bird's-eye view of the situation on the ground. The TIP 'Intellicopter' educates journalists about security threats and opportunities for peace. More than a thousand journalists from more than 450 media outlets have taken the 'Intellicopter' tour, including top journalists from the US, England, France, Germany, Russia, Italy, Latin America, Australia and Asia. Millions of people around the world have seen footage shot from these strategic aerial views - views which show Israel's tiny size and enormous security challenges." (theisraelproject.org)
Meanwhile, out of sight of Western 'journalists' on their 'Intellicopter' tours of the Apartheid State, or Palestinian quislings on their 'smiles & appeasement' tour of New York, life goes on as normal in occupied Palestine:
"Eyewitnesses reported that dozens of armored Israeli military vehicles invaded Tulkarem city and Nour Shams refugee camp at approximately 2:30 am and assassinated Iyad As'ad Shilbaya, 38. As details of the assassination began to unfold, it was revealed that soldiers first broke into the home of Iyad's father and forced his brother to accompany them to his home. After arriving at the home of Iyad, soldiers wired and detonated the main door and immediately went to Iyad's bedroom and fired at least 3 rounds at him while he was still in bed. One bullet hit him in the neck and 2 in the chest. Soldiers then took Iyad's body and withdrew from the area. His brother said that he heard him shouting 'Who's there?' before the soldiers fired 3 rounds at him while he was still in bed. His wife was not at home as she was visiting her parents in Jenin... Furthermore, soldiers kidnapped 10 Hamas members in Nour Shams and took them to unknown destinations." (Army assassinates a Hamas leader in Tulkarem, Saed Bannoura, imemc.org, 17/9/10)
Or, if you prefer the TIP version, as chanelled by The New York Times: "Israeli troops killed a Hamas militant during a raid in the West Bank... Israel said soldiers were trying to arrest him when he ran toward them, ignoring orders to halt." (West Bank: Israeli soldiers kill militant in raid, Associated Press, 17/9/10)
[See also my 6/9/10 post On the Nose]