On July 23rd, 1990, Israel Resource News Agency organized a dialogue between Israeli-American residents of Judea and then US Consul in Jerusalem, Mr. Phillip Wilcox.

During that discussion, guests from Judea praised the sensitivity of the US government to the human rights and civil liberties of Palestinian Arab residents of Judea, Samaria and Gaza, and asked the about  human rights of Jews who live in the same areas.

US Consul Wilcox responded quickly and straightforwardly, with no emotion: “If you live where you live, then you have no human rights and no civil liberties.”

Wilcox invoked the 1949 Red Cross Fourth Geneva Convention, which forbids nations that conquer other lands from settle their citizens in those lands.

Wilcox, consistent with his po‎sition, now heads the Washington-based Foundation for Middle East Peace, which issues weekly papers on the imperative for Israel to stop living in Judea, Samaria, and East Jerusalem.

Don’t let facts stand in the way

The Wilcox statement of Jewish human rights denial ignored the San Remo Treaty, adopted by both the League of Nations and the United Nations, which protects the right of Jews to purchase land and to settle in the Jewish national homeland, defined as anywhere west of the Jordan River.

27 years later, Israeli government officials have adopted the po‎sition  that “settlers” have no human rights or civil liberties, even if they are law-abiding, tax-paying Israeli citizens.

The Israeli government destruction of Amona this week speaks for itself.

The Israeli government, when it approved Jewish families to live there, did not know about private claims to that land.

In other words, the mistake was not that of the people who moved there.

The mistake was that of the government.

Yet the government brutally moved its police army to expel the 41 “settler” families with more than  200 children who had lived there for the past 21 years, without  a place for “settler” families to move to, because “settlers” do not yet have human rights in Israel.

If there is one goal in Jerusalem at this time, it would be to ensure that all Israelis have human rights, and that the world recognize that, beginning with the United States.

The time has come to remove the pejorative term of “settler” from the Israeli and American lexicon.:

A “Settler” is a non-person, like Afro Americans who used to be referred to as the  “n” word.

http://www.israelnationalnews.com/Blogs/Message.aspx/9511#.WJTz-FMrKUk

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David Bedein is an MSW community organizer and an investigative journalist.   In 1987, Bedein established the Israel Resource News Agency at Beit Agron to accompany foreign journalists in their coverage of Israel, to balance the media lobbies established by the PLO and their allies.   Mr. Bedein has reported for news outlets such as CNN Radio, Makor Rishon, Philadelphia Inquirer, Los Angeles Times, BBC and The Jerusalem Post, For four years, Mr. Bedein acted as the Middle East correspondent for The Philadelphia Bulletin, writing 1,062 articles until the newspaper ceased operation in 2010. Bedein has covered breaking Middle East negotiations in Oslo, Ottawa, Shepherdstown, The Wye Plantation, Annapolis, Geneva, Nicosia, Washington, D.C., London, Bonn, and Vienna. Bedein has overseen investigative studies of the Palestinian Authority, the Expulsion Process from Gush Katif and Samaria, The Peres Center for Peace, Peace Now, The International Center for Economic Cooperation of Yossi Beilin, the ISM, Adalah, and the New Israel Fund.   Since 2005, Bedein has also served as Director of the Center for Near East Policy Research.   A focus of the center's investigations is The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA). In that context, Bedein authored Roadblock to Peace: How the UN Perpetuates the Arab-Israeli Conflict - UNRWA Policies Reconsidered, which caps Bedein's 28 years of investigations of UNRWA. The Center for Near East Policy Research has been instrumental in reaching elected officials, decision makers and journalists, commissioning studies, reports, news stories and films. In 2009, the center began decided to produce short movies, in addition to monographs, to film every aspect of UNRWA education in a clear and cogent fashion.   The center has so far produced seven short documentary pieces n UNRWA which have received international acclaim and recognition, showing how which UNRWA promotes anti-Semitism and incitement to violence in their education'   In sum, Bedein has pioneered The UNRWA Reform Initiative, a strategy which calls for donor nations to insist on reasonable reforms of UNRWA. Bedein and his team of experts provide timely briefings to members to legislative bodies world wide, bringing the results of his investigations to donor nations, while demanding reforms based on transparency, refugee resettlement and the demand that terrorists be removed from the UNRWA schools and UNRWA payroll.   Bedein's work can be found at: www.IsraelBehindTheNews.com and www.cfnepr.com. A new site,unrwa-monitor.com, will be launched very soon.

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