Jerusalem – Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu informed the Israeli Knesset Parliament Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee last week that, for the first time since the inception of the negotiation process with the P.L.O. in 1993, the Israeli government has announced an official policy to monitor virulent incitement from official media outlets of the Palestinian Authority (P.A.).

Mr. Netanyahu has appointed the former head of Military Intelligence’s research department as government coordinator for incitement in the P.A. 

“We will set parameters by which to measure the level of incitement,” Mr. Netanyahu told the committee. “People must know exactly what is happening on this issue because, for a peace agreement, education toward peace and acceptance of Israel are needed.”

An “incitement index” will be produced by monitoring broadcasts in the official P.A. media, statements and actions by senior P.A. officials and textbooks, according to senior Israeli government officials. All of these will be examined for incitement, encouraging an atmosphere of violence and/or manifestations of anti-Semitism.
The Israeli government was particularly outraged by the P.A.’s plan to hold a ceremony on Wednesday to name a square in Ramallah in honor of the late Mrs. Dalal al-Mughrabi, one of the Palestinian terrorists who landed a small dingy on a beach in Israel, murdered an American photographer, Gail Rubin, the niece of the late U.S. Senator Abraham Ribicoff, and then commandeered a passenger bus where they proceeded to murder 37 Israeli citizens. After pressure was brought to bear from both the Israeli and American governments, the ceremony was canceled.

The Bulletin has learned that Vice President Biden, now on an official visit to the Middle East, made a direct request that the P.A. cancel the ceremony that honors a terrorist.

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Meanwhile, recent examples of Incitement from official channels of the Palestinian Authority include:

February 26, 2010: P.A. Prime Minister Salam Fayyad stated that the Al-Ibrahimi mosque site in Hebron [the Machpelah] is “an inseparable part of Palestinian lands occupied in 1967, as is the Gaza strip and eastern Jerusalem.”

According to NAM News Network:

“After performing Friday prayers (which were held at the Al-Ibrahimi mosque) Fayyad said that the Palestinian people stand together in facing the Israeli decision to list Al-Ibrahimi mosque and Rachel Tomb (sic) – a mosque – both on Palestinian land, as Israeli UNESCO (sic) heritage sites.

“He stressed that Israel by this, breaches international law, having no claim over the land, which the Palestinians have full rights to.”

He further warned of an increased risk of violence as a result of the Israeli government decision on the sites, adding “we are all united against the decision of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and against the terror of the settlers.”

Several sources reported that Mr. Fayyad accused Israel of having “annexed” the site.

February 23, 2010: P.A. President Mahmoud Abbas referred to the decision of the Netanyahu government to add the Machpelah in Hebron and Kever Rachel outside of Bethlehem to the list of national Heritage sites as a “severe provocation” that could lead to a “war of religions” and possibly a new intifada.

David Bedein can be reached at


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