Jerusalem – Israeli law allows visitors to remain in Israel on a tourist visa for three months, subject to application for extension, with priority given to students who are learning in Israeli academic institutions.

If a visitor takes a job, he must apply for a work visa and may remain in Israel for five years, so long as the visitor has not taken a job from an Israeli citizen.

However, some Israeli institutions reach beyond the traditional approach of reaching out to Jewish people to assume Israeli citizenship.

Israel’s collective farms, known as “Kibbutzim,” are now doing their best to recruit unpaid day laborers, Jewish or not Jewish.

To that end, they have hired PR firms to conduct a high profile PR campaign and lobby in the Israeli Knesset to allow Sudanese citizens to live permanently on their Kibbutzim under a special act of “permanent residency.”

While the Sudanese would receive medical care, food and housing from the Kibbutzim, the question of their dignity, ethnicity and future is left up in the air.

Meanwhile, the U.N. provided funds to Egypt to feed and house Sudanese refugees from Darfur who leave the Egyptian camps after U.N. provisions that have somehow disappeared.

In the case of the Falashmora (Ethiopian Jews descended from forced converts to Judaism), Israel determined that 15,700 qualify for residency in Israel under the law of return. Former Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon allowed a quota of 600 per month. Olmert reduced it to 300 per month after failing to achieve his desired number of 150 per month.

The health and sanitary conditions in the Falashmora transit camps are not good. The Falashmora cannot return to their villages, where they would be slaughtered. They are not being processed by the Israeli government, with no reason being given. No media outlet is making a fuss about it.

David Bedein can be reached at His Web site is

©The Bulletin 2007


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David Bedein
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: and A new site,, will be launched very soon.