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With Middle Eastern regimes under challenge as never before, are the Palestinians adopting a new strategy in their struggle with Israel? How will President Obama respond to claims that the US is losing influence in the region? Also, America's five biggest mortgage firms are accused of fraud, and politics and privacy in France.

Banner image: Boy scouts hold up the Palestinian flag and a black flag that reads in Arabic, 'There is no solution but the right of return,' as they commemorate the 1948 creation of the Jewish state known in Arabic as the 'Nakba,' close to the Israeli-built separation barrier in the Israeli occupied West Bank, on May 17, 2011. Photo: Saif Dahlah/AFP/Getty Images

Making News Five Biggest Mortgage Firms Accused of Fraud 7 MIN, 32 SEC

America's five largest mortgage companies are accused of defrauding taxpayers in their handling of home foreclosures. Bank of America, Wells Fargo, JP Morgan Chase, Citigroup and Ally Financial are collectively holding three out of every five home loans. The accusations arise from audits by the Department of Housing and Urban Development. That's according to Shahien Nasiripour of the Huffington Post.

Shahien Nasiripour, Huffington Post (@nasiripour)

Main Topic Political Change and Continuing Conflict in the Middle East 35 MIN, 38 SEC

On Sunday, Israel's 63rd anniversary, massed Palestinians approached the country's borders from Syria, Lebanon, the Gaza Strip and the West Bank. Some were fired on by soldiers, but Israeli leaders concede that a shift from suicide bombs to unarmed masses creates challenges of a new and different kind. Another challenge will come in September, when the UN General Assembly might well declare a Palestinian state. This week, it's President Obama's turn, with a much-anticipated speech on the so-called "Arab Spring" and meetings with regional leaders, including today's meeting with King Abdullah of Jordan.

Joel Greenberg, freelance reporter
Laura Rozen, Al-Monitor (@lrozen)
Jim Gelvin, University of California, Los Angeles
Uri Dromi, Miami Herald
Mouin Rabbani, Institute for Palestine Studies (@jadaliyya)

Reporter's Notebook The French Reaction to Dominique Strauss-Kahn 7 MIN, 29 SEC

In the US and Britain, the private lives of public figures have become fair games for reporters, from supermarket tabloids to the New York Times, but in France, it's different. Now, the arrest of Dominique Strauss-Kahn on sex charges is challenging the assumption that powerful figures should be entitled to privacy. The immensely powerful head of the International Monetary Fund was the leading candidate to challenge Nicolas Sarkozy for the presidency of France, but allegations by a hotel maid have reduced him to incarceration in a New York jail cell. Elaine Sciolino reports from Paris for the New York Times.

Elaine Sciolino, New York Times

La Seduction

Elaine Sciolino

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