"Lichtman is no crystal ball gazer. His predictions are based on a formula he developed in 1981 in collaboration with a Russian geophysicist, who had previously specialized in creating models used to forecast earthquakes. Their approach was based on a thorough analysis of the forces at work in shaping the political landscape in every U.S. presidential elections from 1860 to 1980. From this examination they developed their predictive model. And since then, Lichtman has used it to correctly forecast the outcome of every election from 1984 through 2008."
"Israel's position regarding Hamas or the upcoming reconciliation talks is unclear. In general, Israelis are opposed to this reconciliation, as exemplified by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's statement that Palestinians must choose between Hamas or peace. Not that the Israeli prime minister was making any serious peace offers, but the right-wing Israeli government has shown in recent months a more pragmatic side to it....The Israeli-Hamas prisoner exchange and the indirect negotiations, through Egypt, with the aim of stopping rockets coming from Gaza show that Tel Aviv is not totally opposed to an understanding that includes Hamas."
"In recent years, this deadlock has been compounded by Israeli archeological digs and development of sites near the Mount and in the City of David, or Silwan. In Palestinian eyes, these projects are geared to uncover and display the remains of biblical Jerusalem at the expense of layer upon layer of non-Hebrew Jerusalem culture, including a millennium and a half of Arab and Muslim civilization. They also threaten to dislodge the current Palestinian Arab residents of Silwan."