1. Netanyahu victory gets muted response from West
    Paris (AFP) – Western governments gave a muted reaction Wednesday to the re-election of Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu amid fears that his increasingly hardline stance has fatally undermined the Middle East peace process.
  2. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Victory In Israel Elections Leaves Damage In Its Wake
    TEL AVIV, Israel (AP) — Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s strong showing in national elections this week has come with a price: He has managed to antagonize friends and foes alike with hard-line rhetoric on the campaign trail.
  3. NYT Columnist Friedman: Maybe US Should Be Arming ISIS
    Should the U.S., instead of trying to bomb the Islamic State (ISIS) back to the stone age, actually be arming the terrorist group?
  4. President Obama Blames Bush For Rise Of ISIS
    “ISIL is a direct outgrowth of Al Qaeda in Iraq that grew out of our invasion, which is an example of unintended consequences which is why we should generally aim before we shoot,” Obama said in an interview with VICE News, referring to the Iraq war launched by Bush.
  5. Pakistan warns Turkey: Don’t make our mistakes
    The armed uprising in Syria, with the goal of changing the regime, has given birth to organizations that are threatening the entire population of the region, but Turkey is continuing on its way in total disregard for the perils of “Pakistanization.”
  6. Where is Turkey’s place in strategy against IS?
    The Iraqi army and Shiite militias are widely expected to begin a major offensive to retake Mosul from the Islamic State (IS), backed with air support by the international coalition. The eventual recapture of Iraq’s second-largest city is likely to mark a turning point in the strategy against IS.
  7. As nuclear deadline nears, fears Saudi may try to match Iran
    Riyadh (AFP) – Fears that Shiite Iran will remain a potential nuclear threat under a mooted international deal have raised concerns that Tehran’s Sunni rival Saudi Arabia could seek its own atomic capability.
  8. AP ANALYSIS: Israel likely headed toward conflict, isolation
    JERUSALEM (AP) — Benjamin Netanyahu’s apparent reelection puts Israel on a course toward ever deeper confrontation with the world. To govern, his Likud Party would need to depend on ultranationalists — a recipe for neither stability nor bold moves toward Mideast peace.
  9. Could the Sunni-Shiite Rift Make Tikrit a Pyrrhic Victory?
    The foremost Sunni Muslim seat of learning, al-Azhar University in Cairo, has stirred controversy by issuing a considered legal opinion (fatwa) condemning the Shiite militias or “Popular Mobilization Forces” that are now fighting alongside the Iraq army to take Tikrit back from Daesh (ISIL or ISIS).
  10. Shiite militias: Iran is our main source of weapons
    ERBIL, Kurdistan Region – Iran is the main provider of weapons, ammunition and supplies for Shiite militias working with the Iraqi Army in the fight against ISIS, a spokesperson for the Shiite groups has said.