1. Shalom Achshav: Malshin Achshav

Over the past month, the Americans for Peace Now have been conducting an unprecedented campaign for a Jewish organization, and a member of the Conference of Presidents of Major Jewish Organizations. The APN took out ads in the Jewish media on January 10th and the APN director, Deborah DeLee, wrote an oped in the Washington Post of January 21stWhen I asked the APN spokesman if that means that APN will new oppose nursery schools and baby clinics in Gush Etzion, the APN spokesman aid that children “should not grow up in communities that they will not live in during a time of peace”.

I wonder what “time of peace” he is referring to.

When I asked the spokesman of Peace Now in Israel about their organization using a foreign government to attack Israeli gov’t, The Peace Now spokesman in Israel tried at first to say that Americans for Peace Now acts independently of the Israeli office of Peace Now. And what about the $2.2 Million that APN provided for Peace Now political demonstrations in Israel over the past two years? The Peace Now spokesman in Israel had no further comment. Meanwhile, the APN spokesman in DC was clear about the fact that their effort to lobby the US government against Israeli policy was coordinated with Peace Now in Jerusalem.

The APN campaign has produced results. The Washington Post ran its own editorial on January 31 in which it championed APN campaign on the “settlements”, and the Bush Administration issued a statement on February 4th in which it also endorsed that same campaign.

The Americans for Peace Now will now dispatch two delegates to participate in the annual visit of the Conference of Presidents Delegation to Israel that is scheduled for February 16th, where the delegation will receive sensitive briefings from Israeli government officials. Since the APN has established the fact that it sees its role as a lobby of the US government against Israel, the question remains as to whether the APN should be permitted to participate in such briefings or even allowed into Israel. I asked for a comment from Malcolm Hoenlein, the conference director, but none was forthcoming.

2. Israel deserters group spokesman raises funds in North America to subsidize IDF deserters

Amit Mashiah, spokesman for the Courage to Refuse campaign, arrives in New York this Monday, February 10th, to raise funds from church groups and Jewish organizations in the US and in Canada.

Mashiah says that funds will be allocated to build his organization and to provide funds for IDF combat soldiers who would be arrested for refusing orders to serve beyond the 1949-1967 armistice line, even in fierce combat.

All funds for the IDF desertion campaign are channeled through the IRS tax deductible Shefa Fund in Philadelphia.

Mashiah also says that his organization would even provide finances for an Israeli soldier who deserts his unit rather than pursue a PLO terrorist who had just blown up a hotel in Netanya and taken refuge in an Arab village in Judea, Samaria or Jerusalem, Mashiah states emphatically that any all IDF incursions there would be illegal and immoral, even when pursuing a terrorist. Mashiah explains that funds raised during his forthcoming trip will be allocated for legal fees of the deserter and for a salary that would come to 50% of the average wage in Israel during any jail sentence of a deserter.

In other words, Mashiah’s Courage to Refuse campaign gives you a better deal than the Israel Unemployment Office, which only provides 50% of the minimum wage for many unemployed Israeli citizens.

Now we have a new reason for Israelis to wait for Mashiah.

One place that Mashiah is scheduled to speak is at the Kraft Center for Jewish Life Hillel Foundation at Columbia University on February 18th.

When I asked the Columbia Hillel Director, as to whether it was appropriate to invite a representative of the Israeli deserters group while Israel was at war, he answered that the question was inappropriate.

When I asked the Hillel Director as to whether Columbia Hillel would provide equal time for a speaker from Israel to refute Mashiah’s claims that Israel’s policies in Judea and Samaria were “illegal and immoral”, the director slammed down the phone.

It is instructive to know how a major Hillel Foundation educates its students about Israel during a time of war.

3. Israeli Arab peace group initiates a visit to Auschwitz with agenda: to remove any knowledge of Moslem involvement in the murder of the six million Jews.

This week, I covered a packed press conference at the Beit Agron Press Center in Jerusalem where a delegation of Israeli Arab citizens, led by a Catholic priest from Nazereth, announced their intention to launch the first Israeli Arab study group to examine the “pain suffered by the Jews at the hands of the Nazis during World War II”.

The name of their new organization: “Memory of Peace”.

So far so good.

A positive message communicated by Israeli Arab citizens to their Israeli Jewish brethren.

And then the kicker. Buried on the third page of their press release. carefully written by a leading Israeli Arab lawyer, also from Nazareth, was a stunning statement of their underlying purpose: to show the world that ” no Arabs or Moslems” were in any way responsible for the holocaust.

Well, the week before, it so happened that I visited a new center for Holocaust documentation in San Antonio, Texas (Check it out at www.holocaust-history.org) where I requested and received documentation concerning the role of the Mufti of Jerusalem in the mass murder of the Jews.

The center provided 22 documented sources on the Mufti – how the Mufti advised and supported Hitler’s idea for a Final Solution, how the Mufti helped to organize Moslems to participate in the mass murder of the Jews of Bosnia, how the Mufti visited the death camps, how the Mufti had taken refuge in Hitler’s bunker, and how the Mufti had been tried in absentia for crimes against humanity and that the Mufti had ultimately escaped justice when French intelligence had helped him to escape to Cairo in 1945.

With this background material in hand, I asked the Israeli Arab holocaust study group if they would devote themselves to learn more about the role of the Mufti and the Palestinian Arab community in the murder of European Jewry. I also asked them if they would delete their statement that neither Moslems nor Arabs had anything to do with carrying out the crime of the holocaust.

The Israeli Arab holocaust study group would not commit themselves.

It would seem that a new form of Moslem holocaust denial was launched this week,made in Israel.

Excerped from the Makor Rishon, a weekly news magazine published in Petach Tikva, Israel

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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.