Jerusalem – Israeli officials deny the claim in the newspaper Asharq al-Awsat that soldiers Eldad Regev and Ehud Goldwasser were taken shortly after their kidnapping by Hezbollah to the Iranian Revolutionary Guard. According to the report, high-ranking officers of the Revolutionary Guard were in Lebanon throughout the war and commanded the transfer of the soldiers from Lebanon to Iran through a third country. Officials in the Prime Minister’s Bureau who are involved in the negotiations for the soldiers’ release said that the report is inaccurate and that it is a tendentious report written by a journalist who opposes the Iranian regime.

Karnit Goldwasser, the wife of kidnapped Israeli soldier Ehud Goldwasser, celebrated another sad wedding anniversary yesterday.

The couple was married exactly two years ago, and yesterday they were supposed to have celebrated the event together. Instead, Karnit observed it alone for the second time.

“We were together for so many years and we did so many things together, but we didn’t manage to celebrate our first wedding anniversary together,” she said. “For me it is another difficult day in which I go to sleep alone and wake up alone. It is the same difficulty all the time.”

Ehud’s father criticized the government and its leader. “The people see the kidnapped soldiers as a national problem,” he said. “Regrettably, the politicians, led by the prime minister, do not see things that way.”

Assad: We Won’t Come To Conference If Golan Not Discussed; U.S.: Golan Not On Agenda

Syrian President Bashar Assad said that his country has still not received an invitation to any international peace conference.

In an interview with the Tunisian newspaper Al-Shuruk, Mr. Assad said that even if his country is invited, it will not participate unless all the subjects pertaining to the Arab-Israeli conflict are raised, including that of the Golan Heights.

But the spokesman for the Near East Department of the Foreign Ministry, David Polly, said that the subject of the Golan Heights would not be discussed at all.

Mr. Assad also claimed that the Israeli aircraft that penetrated Syria’s airspace in September attacked a military target whose construction had not yet been completed. The New York Times yesterday confirmed that the military target was, indeed, a facility that had not been completed – a nuclear facility, according to the Times.

Syria held a tour for foreign journalists in the region of Dir el-Zour in the northeastern region of the country. According to the media, the Arab Institute for the Study of Arid Regions, the facility that was attacked, is located there. The director of the institute told the journalists during the tour of the institute that there is no trace of an attack in the region.

The Return Of The British Boycott

Against Israel

Less than two weeks after the British Association of University Teachers announced that it was stopping its efforts to impose an academic boycott against Israel for legal reasons, the sponsors of the boycott announced that they were renewing their efforts to impose it.

The leaders of the campaign to boycott Israel met on Saturday in London at an event that drew some 150 people, including senior lecturers from universities across the U.K.

Among the speakers were a number of Israelis, such as Dr. Oren Ben-Dor from Southampton University, Prof. Ilan Pappe, a transplanted Israeli communist now teaching at Exeter University and Prof. Haim Bereshit, another Israeli, from East London University.

The leader of the campaign, Sue Blackwell from Birmingham University, received loud applause when she announced that the third Intifada against Israel would be an academic Intifada that would involve an academic boycott.

Ms. Blackwell rejected the legal opinion that was submitted to the AUT, which has a membership of 120,000. The legal opinion noted that an academic boycott of Israel was illegal in Britain.

Ms. Blackwell said, however, that “we weren’t shown the legal opinion and, in any event, it doesn’t include any restriction about ‘discussing a boycott.’ Therefore, we will talk about a boycott and we will invite a number of Palestinian academics for a round of appearances throughout Britain to explain their situation.”

The campaign sponsors also decided to commission a report from Israel that would review what they referred to as the “apartheid policies” that are supposedly in effect in academic institutions in Israel against Arab students.

Will Hamas Attack?

According to intelligence sources, Hamas militiamen are currently digging offensive tunnels out of the northern Gaza Strip into Israel.

The Palestinians believe that those tunnels will be used to infiltrate terrorists into Israel, where they will operate in a manner similar to the attack at the Kerem Shalom junction south of Gaza in June 2006, by attacking a military outpost and kidnapping a soldier.

A hint of what lies in store was given by Hamas Palestinian Legislative Council member Mushir al-Masri, who said, “If the next stage requires Katyusha rocket fire, why not? If the next stage requires the resumption of suicide bombing attacks, why not?”

©The Bulletin 2007

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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.