Standort: / Meldung: "Game changer "Iron Dome""

Kate Farmer

Cutting to the chase

20. 11. 2012 - 14:52

Game changer "Iron Dome"

Reality Check: Israel and the Iron Dome, an Egyptian in Jerusalem, Children's Rights Day, Nigerian environmentalist Nnimmo Bassey, the hippos of Uganda

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After six days of exchanging rocket fire, 110 Palestinian and 3 Israeli deaths, and countless threats, insults and condemnations on both sides - Israel has decided to put its planned ground invasion of Gaza on hold.

Egypt is mediating in talks aimed at securing a truce between the Israelis and the Palestinians - and the Israeli government says it wants to give these talks a chance to succeed. However, there is a deadline of Thursday, and it's unclear what will happen then if a deal hasn't been struck.

One thing that is very clear, is that Israel is coming off far better in the exchange of rockets than Gaza. Putting all politics and rights and wrongs of the conflict aside for a moment, it's a remarkable demonstration of the effectiveness of Israel's "Iron Dome" interception system. In a nutshell, Iron Dome is, as they say, a game changer. It's a missile defence system so efficient that it allows those protected by it to more or less relax and wait for the enemy to run out of missiles.

Going back to the politics, that means Israel can afford to talk tough, safe in the knowledge that the Palestinian offensive is proving to be little more than an expensive fireworks display for the average Israeli citizen, and also safe in the knowledge that no other countries are likely to want to get involved.

Many commentators are saying that if the Israeli government were to launch a ground invasion of Gaza, it would quickly lose the public support it currently enjoys. With elections looming in January, Prime Minister Netanyahu will be keen to keep that support behind him, so maybe talk of a ground invasion really is just talk.

As Irris Makler reports from Jerusalem, the "Iron Dome" may turn out to be a game changer in more ways than one.

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Israeli Palestinian prejudices

While the rockets fly overhead, ordinary civilians are doing their best to continue in their day to day lives, but the escalating conflict has brought out a new wave of hate rhetoric on the social media.

However, on a personal level, there is a great deal of prejudice that is just down to lack of understanding of how people live on the other side. Khaled Diab, an Egyptian living in Jerusalem, talks how living among Israelis has given him insight into the peoples' side of the conflict.

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Children's rights in Austria

On the International Day for the Rights of the Child, the United Nations has published a report which criticises Austria.
The NGO Kinder Haben Rechte has been petitioning the government with an open letter drawing attention to the problems.

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Oil in the Niger Delta

Nigerian environmental activist and human rights campaigner, Nnimmo Bassey, talks to Joanna Bostock about the problems caused by oil drilling in the Niger Delta.

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Hippos in Uganda

Although usually more famous for wars and atrocities, Uganda is now trying to build its tourist trade, and and important part of that is the wildlife.

Chris Cummins meets hippos and other wildlife during a boat trip on the Nile as a part of his recent cycling trip of Uganda.

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