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Is the Israeli Defense Ministry's new Arabic website a waste?

Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman decided to spend 10 million shekels ($2.6 million) on a new website in Arabic that is supposed to spread messages to the Palestinians and the Arab world.
Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman speaks to the press prior to the weekly cabinet meeting in Jerusalem on December 28, 2014. AFP PHOTO/POOL/GALI TIBBON        (Photo credit should read GALI TIBBON/AFP/Getty Images)
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With the support of the civil administration, preparations to create an Arabic-language news website that targets Palestinian audiences are about to be completed. The staff of the new site, dubbed “Channel Liberman,” will consist of soldiers and civilians who speak Arabic, veterans of Israel Defense Forces intelligence units, and internet and content specialists. Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman ordered the creation of the website. Its content, such as analyses of events and trends in the news, will present the stories from an Israeli perspective.

According to Liberman, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has seized control of the major Palestinian centers of power, including the media. As a result, any attempt to communicate with the Palestinians must go through the Muqata (seat of Palestinian government) in Ramallah. “I want to connect with them [Palestinians] directly,” Liberman told reporters, when presenting his new “carrot-and-stick” plan Aug. 17.

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