Abbas is spineless and carries no weight as a credible negotiator on behalf of the Palestinians. Any meaningful peace talks, whether in September/October or after American mid-term elections in November, will need to have seen Marwan Barghouti released and playing an important role in those talks. So, the sooner Netanyahu pulls back from his aggressive rhetoric about scuds and about Iran, and engages Hamas purposefully in negotiations for the release of Marwan Barghouti and others in exchange for Shalit's freedom, the better the prospects will be for Israel to move towards consolidating security i the interest of its citizens.
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Prominent Egyptian human rights lawyers arrested at Cairo airport (AP)