After reading “DAVID MAKOVSKY AT GA: OPTIMISTIC THAT ABBAS IS A REAL PARTNER ” in the Winnipeg Jewish Bulletin, http://tinyurl.com/y9h2s2n , here are some thoughts.

David Makovsky wants to live up to his job description as the “director of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy’s project on the Middle East peace process”, and therefore promotes the notion that a middle east peace process still exists, when he states that “he is “hopeful” that real opportunities for peace between the Palestinian Authority and Israel exist today.

Makovsky chooses to ignore the unambiguous declaration of war on Israel to that the Fatah, which is the controlling organization in the Palestinian Authority, declared at its conference in August and at the meeting of the Fatah’s central committee Palestinian at its conference last week in Ramallah.

Instead, Makovsky declares that PA President Mahmoud Abbas is not a rejectionist, in the speech that he gave at the General Assembly of Jewish Federations of North America that took place in Washington, D.C., Nov. 8-10. On what basis did Makovsky draw such a conclusion? In Makovsky’s words, because, “Abbas has faced death threats from extremists for advocating a two-state solution.” Why does Makovsky not relate to the widespread corruption that continues to plague the Palestinian Authority and the widely publicized graft that Abbas’s own sons have benefited from in that context? Why does Makovsky not mention a word about the whereabouts of the billions of dollars from his mentor’s Arafat’s slush accounts that continue to help Abbas’s colleagues live high on the hog? Why does Makovsky not make any mention of the e thousands of Palestinians whom the PA continues to confine to UNRWA camps, under the specious premise and promise of the right of return to homes and villages that no longer exist from 1948?

Makovsky’s standing as a serious academic comes into question when he declares that he relies on the polling data of Khalil Shikaki of the Palestinian Centre for Policy and Survey Research, who declares that “49 percent of Palestinians recognize Israel as a Jewish state”.

In a totalitarian system, what is more important – what a state-run pollster concludes or the statements of all Palestinian Authority spokespeople who categorically declare that they will never recognize Israel as a Jewish state, beginning with Abbas’s countless statements in this regard.

A most unprofessional statement from Makovsky at the GA was when he praised the removal of checkpoints and barricades, saying that this would solve the problem that “people can’t get from Ramallah to Nablus”, in Makovsky’s words.

Makovsky’s praise of the “security co-operation between Israel and the PA” is devoid of any warning that this may have disastrous consequences, since the Fatah-dominated PA repeats, time and again, that it is not abandoning the military option against Israel.

Yet the unkindest cut of all in Makovsky’s myopic promotion of the Fatah as a peace partner occurred in October 2003, when he hosted four leaders of the Fatah Tanzim to Washington, D.C., to advance their cause with the U.S. Congress and with various Jewish organizations.

Yet Makovsky hosted the Tanzim at a time when the Tanzim were helping to orchestrate a murder campaign that claimed the lives of hundreds of people in Israel at the time.

It would be instructive to know if Makovsky, in his frequent visits to Israel, has taken the time to visit the victims of those whom he promotes as a peace partner.

Makovsky lived in Israel for many years

However, Makosvky chose to leave Israel and to raise his children in the comfortable suburb of Solver Spring, Md.

Distance makes the heart grow less sensitive to those who suffer at the hands of a terrorist organization. Anyway, that would not fit the script that Makovsky so optimistically lays out, which is that Israel has a peace partner to deal with.

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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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