Jerusalem -?Israeli residents of the southern Hebron hills are fearful and angry over the removal of a major IDF roadblock in the area demanded by visiting U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.

Hebron Hills Regional Mayor Zviki Bar-Hai sent an urgent letter to the prime minister yesterday demanding that he withdraw the decision to open the “sheep roadblock” to Judea and Samaria.

As Mr. Bar-Hai wrote to Prime Minister Ehud Olmert: “At this time, by order of the political establishment that you are leading, the military echelon has been instructed to open the road connecting the town of Yatta to Hebron at the ‘sheep junction’ after in recent years the road was open subject to inspection. I would like to remind you that inspections were instituted on the road in the wake of severe incidents that included the killing of three soldiers, dozens of shootings and firebombs thrown at residents and soldiers.”

Mr. Bar-Hai mentioned in his letter that the security establishment had a plan to organize security and traffic at the junction. He warned that any solution other than this plan constituted a clear and present security danger since the army had defined the area as threatened, and the incidents over time had proved that.

He asked Mr. Olmert to advance the construction of the crossing point and prevent any deviation from the plan that exists today until it is built.

“During the very week in which Israel celebrates 60 years of independence, the time has come to put an end to the phenomenon of ‘Rice shows up and roadblocks fall,'” Mr. Bar-Hai wrote.

Palestinian Network Inadvertently Assists IDF Investigation

An IDF inquiry that disputed charges that a family in Gaza was killed by Israeli gunfire on April 28 was based, among other things, upon footage filmed by a Palestinian television crew.

The inquiry, which was carried out by a team appointed by OC Southern Command Maj. Gen. Yoav Galant and directed by the officer in charge of the command’s firing record, was ironically based on footage filmed by the a Palestinian television crew filming for Palestinian Broadcasting Corporation (PBC), the official Palestinian television network. The footage showed that the family had not been sitting indoors but rather in a yard outside. It appears that the iron gate of the yard was wrenched from its place in the explosion and struck the family. It is possible that this was one of the causes of the family members’ deaths.

Yesterday, The Bulletin published the findings of the investigation of the attack in Beit Hanoun from last Monday, which shows that four terrorists who fired at IDF troops were spotted carrying weapons on their backs.

Israeli aircraft located the terrorists, pinpointed them and attacked them, recording a direct hit on one of them. This strike caused a secondary blast more powerful than the first. The aircraft attacked another terrorist who was also evidently carrying weapons, and a direct hit was recorded in this case as well. Both attacks took place on the street adjacent to the family’s home.

The PBC footage ruled out the possibility that the family was harmed by other gunfire, since this was the only incident in which gunfire occurred in the area in question. The family was struck in the secondary explosion or from a projectile thrown at the family in the explosion.

‘Hybrid Wars’ Could Be Model For Future Conflicts

A new report said new conflicts could blur the distinction between war and peace as well as combatants and non-combatants. The report by the Potomac Institute for Policy Studies defined “hybrid wars” as a combination of traditional warfare mixed with insurgency.

“Hybrid wars can be conducted by both states and a variety of non-state actors,” the report said. “Future challenges will present a more complex array of alternative structures and strategies, as seen in the summer of 2006 in the battle between Israel and Hezbollah.

“Conflicts will include hybrid organizations such as Hezbollah and Hamas, employing a diverse set of capabilities,” the report added.

Authored by research fellow Frank Hoffman, the report, titled “Conflict in the 21st Century: The Rise of Hybrid Wars,” asserted that multiple types of warfare would be used simultaneously by what he termed flexible and sophisticated adversaries. Mr. Hoffman said these adversaries have concluded that successful conflict must take on several forms.

Hezbollah was cited by the report for its efficient use of conventional and unconventional military tactics. Mr. Hoffman said Hezbollah, which undermined the credibility of the Israeli military, has become a highly disciplined military and political organization, with autonomous cells operating in southern Lebanon. “Mixing an organized political movement with decentralized cells employing adaptive tactics in ungoverned zones,” the report said, “Hezbollah showed that it could inflict as well as take punishment.”

“Today’s enemies, and tomorrow’s, will employ combinations of warfare types,” the report said. “Non-state actors may mostly employ irregular forms of warfare but will clearly support, encourage and participate in conventional conflict if it serves their ends.”

The report said the United States must be prepared for the full spectrum of conflict from all fronts. Mr. Hoffman, a veteran defense analyst, warned that preparing U.S. forces, particularly the Marines, for only selected types of conflict would be a recipe for defeat.

“Because of their perceived success, hybrid challenges will not be a passing fad, nor will they remain focused on low-tech applications,” the report said. “Future opponents will be dedicated, learn rapidly and adapt quickly to more efficient modes of killing.”

Iran Begins Construction On Another Nuke Reactor

The Middle East Newsline has confirmed that Iran now claims that it has launched the construction of yet another nuclear energy facility, a 360-megawatt electricity-generating facility to be located in an oil-rich region of the southwestern province of Khuzestan.

“Now we need to think about the fuel for it,” Gholamreza Ansari, Iranian ambassador to Russia, said.

Mr. Ansari did not cite Russian or other foreign assistance for the reactor in Darkhovin in southwestern Iran. Other Iranian officials said Tehran plans to construct at least 20 nuclear energy reactors – with a combined 20,000 megawatt capacity – by 2020.

The International Atomic Energy Agency has confirmed Iranian plans for a nuclear reactor at Darkhovin. Iran was said to have blocked information on Darkhovin and other planned facilities to the United Nations agency.

Meanwhile, Iran has nearly completed its first nuclear energy reactor at Bushehr. That 1,000-megawatt reactor was expected to be launched in October 2008 with full operations three months later.

IAEA sources said Iran has been producing an advanced gas centrifuge, known as P-2. The centrifuge was said to have four times the speed to produce enriched uranium as the existing P-1, based on a Pakistani design. “Any Iranian attempt at a more advanced centrifuge would be an escalation of Iran’s ongoing non-compliance with its obligation to suspend all enrichment-related activities,” said the U.S. envoy to the IAEA, Gregory Schulte.

David Bedein can be reached at His Web site is

©The Bulletin 2008


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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.