The defining moment of Yom Kippur occurs when people in the synagogue chant the Unetanneh Tokef prayer: “How many will pass from the earth and how many will be created; who will live and who will die…”

My father, as a boy in the West End of Boston in the 1920’s, said that this prayer drew on heavy emotions. He remembered the sobbing. It was then in the service that letters from Europe were read aloud to tell everyone who had been killed in recent pogroms in Poland and Lithuania.

For me, a difficult moment of Unetanneh Tokef occurred on Yom Kippur in 1973 in Israel. As that prayer was chanted, an IDF officer tapped the shoulder of a fellow sitting three seats away, to tell him that he was being called to war, which would break out in a matter of hours. The sight of watching the young man remove his Tallit prayer shawl, kissing his ten-year-old son, and running out of the synagogue to the jeep that awaited him will always be in my mind.

This year, Yom Kippur is observed at moment of new life-threatening challenges.

The prestigious researcher, Dr. Max Singer, recently published a study which must not be ignored. It shows, for the first time, that the Arabs of Hezbollah, north of Israel, have acquired thousands of precision missiles, more advanced than their earlier strike capabilities, which can hit anywhere across the Jewish state and be aimed at selected targets.

These missiles can target the refineries or ammonia plant in Haifa, the power station in Ashkelon, the Peres nuclear facility in Dimona or any hospital in the country. And they may just hit their targets.

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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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