Oren’s revelations were not cheap shots to promote his new book. They were evidence of his integrit

I have been a vocal critic of Michael Oren,  recently elected to the Israeli Knesset. I did not view Michael Oren as a man of principle.

Well, I was proven to be wrong.

Attending at a speech that Oren gave last week, man of deep principle sat on the podium,  speaking from the heart, speaking with  pain about a subject that his body language told me that he really did not want to discuss, yet felt that he had to deliver

Oren could have acted according to the diplomatic codes that all emissaries live by  – to maintain  the protocol that you not report what  you see and How many people witnessed Obama turn down the request of Jonathan Pollard to visit with his father on his death bed? hear with your eyes and ears.

However, Michael Oren witnessed a US President turn his back on Israel and could not remain silent.

After all, how many people spend quality time with a sitting US President?

How many people witnessed Obama  turn down the request of Jonathan Pollard to visit with his father on his death bed?

How many people witnessed the President of the United States refuse the request of Jonathan Pollard to attend his father’s funeral?

As Abbas joined forces with Hamas, Michael Oren witnessed the unkindest cut of all, the ultimate moral equivalence in American foreign policy, when Obama did not seem to care that any Palestinian state would work towards a “two stage” solution, not a “two state” solution.

Oren’s revelations were not cheap shots to promote his new book.

Michael Oren earned the enmity of the Israel military industrial complex  tied to contracts with the US defense establishment, where the watchword is never to say a discouraging word about the highest power echelons of US-Israeli relations.

Michael Oren also earned the enmity of the American Jewish establishment, which, for 60 years, since the age of US Secretary of Stare John Foster Dulles, has buckled under rather than asserted any real challenge to a sitting US President.

Same goes for the Israeli political establishment, where Michael Oren was denounced by leading politicians from both sides of the political spectrum in the Israeli Knesset Parliament. Now we know why Michael Oren was denied a position in the new Israeli government.

Yet there is a deeper reason for Michael Oren’s principled stand.

Although he renounced his US citizenship to become Israeli ambassador to Washington, Michael Oren is a devoted scholar of American history, and knows well that the fabric of America was woven by those who stood their ground for principle, no matter what price they would have to pay.

It was a young Senator John F. Kennedy who inspired a generation of Americans in the 1950’s and 1960’s when he penned Profiles in Courage, a book and film series which chronicled American politicians who spoke their conscience and paid for it with their careers.

Michael Oren has unwittingly written a  new chapter in Profiles in Courage. The picture of Michael Oren and President Obama is  reminiscent of Mordecai’s  encouragement of Queen Esther, when he tells her, “Who knows if it is but for this that you have come into the palace of the King?”



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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: www.IsraelBehindTheNews.com and www.cfnepr.com. A new site,unrwa-monitor.com, will be launched very soon.