Saeb Erekat sometimes doesn't feel like lying (but does it anyway)

I have a feeling that this exchange, released in Al Jazeera's Palestine Papers, is going to be making the rounds in Ramallah for some time. "SE" is chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat, and "YG" is Yossi Gal, then a deputy director general in Israel's Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

SE: How have you been?

YG: Not too bad, can't complain, how about you?

SE: I'm lying, I've been lying for the last weeks.

YG: Between jogging?

SE: No, no, lying, lying.  I was in Cairo, I was in Jordan, I was in America. Everybody is asking me what is going on Israel, what is Olmert going to do?

YG: And you are telling everyone we are on the verge of success.

SE: And I always tell them this is an internal Israeli matter, a domestic Israeli matter and I keep lying. If somebody sneezes in Tel-Aviv, I get the flu in Jericho, and I have to lie. So that's my last week -- all lies.

YG: As a professor of negotiations, you know that white lies are allowed now and then.

SE: I'm not complaining, I'm admitting -- and sometimes I don't feel like lying.

Alex Wong/Getty Images


Egypt's new Suez Crisis

The violent epicenter of protests in Egypt is an industrial city few outsiders know much about: the seaport town of Suez, which sits astride the Suez Canal as it opens southward into the Red Sea.

Suez has seen its share of blood over the years. In 1967, the coastal town was nearly wiped out during the Six Day War with Israel and thereafter was the scene of sporadic guerrilla fighting between the two sides. The canal remained closed for nearly eight years, reopening only in 1975.

In recent years, Suez has seen growing prosperity, sending billions in tax revenue from its factories and workers to the government in Cairo. But as in the rest of Egypt, that prosperity hasn't been widely shared, leading to the same sort of dashed hopes that proved so explosive in Tunisia.

This week, Suez erupted in anger as protesters took to the streets to complain about economic conditions and their lack of freedom under Hosni Mubarak's government. It got ugly fast, with several deaths and reports of demonstrators hurling Molotov cocktails in response to a harsh police crackdown. (To get a feel for the chaos, check out journalist Ian Lee's gripping tweets from earlier today.) 

Photographs of the mayhem are now coming out. Here are a few of the latest:

Khaled Desouki/AFP/Getty Images