Prepared for the
Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations

by the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs
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DAILY ALERT

April 1, 2004

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In-Depth Issues:

PA General Pocketed Pay of 7,000 Fictitious Troops - Arnon Regular (Ha'aretz)
    Gen. Haj Ismail Jabber, commander of the PA National Security force, has been pocketing the salaries for 7,000 fictitious troops every month, according to an examination of payroll records.
    Some $2 million a month from PA funds was being paid to the general.
    In addition, by using differing exchange rates, another half a million dollars a month went into his pocket.
    This practice was ended on Thursday when, for the first time, the National Security forces will be paid their salaries through their bank accounts instead of in cash.


Hizballah, Hamas Offices Reported in Iraq - Sharon Behn (Washington Times)
    The terrorist groups Hamas and Lebanon-based Hizballah have opened offices in Iraq and are recruiting young men in the cities of Basra and Nasariyah, says the executive director of the American Islamic Congress.
    "I saw the buildings, with signs and the same flag as that of the Lebanese-backed Hizballah hanging outside the building," said Zainab al-Suwaij, who has been in Iraq for 10 months under a U.S. AID education contract.


Britain's Secret War on Terror that Never Ends - Dan McDougall (Scotsman-UK)
    Since 9/11, 556 arrests have been made, documents and videos promoting extremist causes have been found in cities from London to Edinburgh, and fundraising for extremist causes has been uncovered in many of the 90 cases expected to go to court.
    Phones are being tapped, e-mails monitored, and Internet sites scanned for coded messages, and the government is backing these efforts with the required financial impetus.
    Documents seized from Islamic militants arrested in Spain included a sketch-map of Europe drawn by an Algerian militant marking a projected itinerary through Germany and Ireland to London where, he wrote, he hoped to commit an act of "martyrdom."


How the UN Feeds Hamas - Arlene Kushner (National Review)
    The UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) is a central reason why Hamas has the strength it does.
    UNRWA is the only agency that is dedicated to a single group of refugees and establishes its own rules for them.
    It is no accident that UNRWA camps have been the source of an enormous number of terror attacks.
    Weapons are stored and explosives manufactured within the environs of the camps.
    Not only do the terrorists emanate from the camps, but UNRWA employees, who are themselves refugees, are often in the service of Hamas.
    Hamas even controls the UNRWA teachers' union.


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News Resources - North America, Europe, and Asia:

  • Four U.S. Civilians Murdered in Iraq
    Four American civilians, employees of a private security firm, were ambushed and shot or beaten to death in Fallujah, Iraq, on Wednesday by insurgents. Townspeople mutilated the bodies of at least two of the men, dragged them through the streets, suspended them from a bridge, and burned them while crowds danced and cheered. (Washington Post)
        See also In Fallujah, Mob Unleashes Its Rage (Washington Post)
  • Iraq Weapons Inspector Tells of "Credible" Leads
    The new chief weapons inspector in Iraq, Charles Duelfer, told Congress Tuesday that inspectors were continuing to pursue leads - "some quite intriguing and credible" - about concealed caches. "The people we need to speak to have spent their entire professional lives being trained not to speak" about illicit weapons, he said. Duelfer said on Monday that inspectors had uncovered new information that Iraq had in place before the war at least the technical capability to use civilian facilities to quickly produce the biological and chemical agents needed for weapons. (International Herald Tribune)
  • EU "Covered Up" Attacks on Jews by Muslims
    A study released by the EU's racism and xenophobia monitoring center astounded experts by concluding that the wave of anti-Jewish persecution over the last two years stemmed from neo-Nazi or other racist groups. "The largest group of the perpetrators of anti-Semitic activities appears to be young, disaffected white Europeans," said a summary, contradicting the findings in the body of the report which said that most of the 193 violent attacks in France in 2002 - up from 32 in 2001 - were "ascribed to youth from neighborhoods sensitive to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, principally of North African descent." "The percentage attributable to the extreme Right was only 9% in 2002," the report said. (Telegraph-UK)
  • News Resources - Israel and the Mideast:

  • IDF Arrests Palestinian Terrorists at Bethlehem Psychiatric Hospital - Margot Dudkevitch
    Shin Bet and IDF forces arrested 12 Palestinian fugitives, some members of the Palestinian security forces and others Fatah Tanzim members, who hid out in a local psychiatric hospital in the Dehaishe refugee camp near Bethlehem and engaged in gun battles with soldiers before surrendering. Among those detained are terrorists who planned to launch suicide bomb attacks during the Pessah holiday and others involved in terror attacks against Israelis. (Jerusalem Post)
  • Islamic Jihad Promises Heaven to Teen Recruit - Matthew Gutman and Khaled Abu Toameh
    Islamic Jihad recruited Tamer Khawireh, 15, to be a suicide bomber, one of four Nablus boys recruited by terrorist groups and then arrested in the past month. Khawireh's stunned father, Massoud, said Tuesday that he called Islamic Jihad to demand an explanation. They apologized, lamely arguing that they mistook the 10th grader for an 18-year-old, and promising not to do it again. "We discovered the plan only three hours before my brother was supposed to set out on the suicide mission," said Tamer's eldest brother, Raed.
        In Nablus's central market, one man swore that the Shin Bet had fabricated the stories of youths being conscripted, that "no Palestinian group would do such a thing." When asked how many of them believed that version, all the men in the crowd, young and old, raised their hands. In public, Tamer's father also stuck to the standard Palestinian line: Israel is to blame. (Jerusalem Post)
  • Egyptian Gets 15 Years for Offer to Spy for Israel
    Egyptian lawyer Waleed Lotfy Ahmed Hashim, 29, was sentenced on Wednesday to 15 years in prison after being convicted of spying for Israel. Hashim had sent a fax to the Israeli embassy in Cairo offering his services in return for $2,500, which was intercepted by Egyptian authorities. The Israeli embassy denied it had any contacts with the accused. (Maarivenglish.com)
  • Global Commentary and Think-Tank Analysis (Best of U.S., UK, and Israel):

  • A Double Standard in the War on Terror - Johannes Gerster
    The terrorist attacks in Madrid shook up the Germans. Interior Minister Otto Schily has demanded that suspicious foreigners be expelled, without legal proceedings. Had I made this demand 15 years ago, as the political spokesman of the Christian Democratic faction in the Bundestag, I would have been denounced. How would the Germans respond had 10,000 citizens been killed in terrorist attacks in the course of three years? That number is the blood price paid by Israel, relative to the size of its population, in this period.
        I am angered and amazed by the voices in Germany, which although they are coming out against global terrorism, are placing most of the responsibility for what is happening on Israel. Aren't these arguments that stem from a double standard, and from political shortsightedness? Even if Israel did not exist, we would be confronting the existence of terror against Western democracies. The writer has been a representative of the Konrad Adenauer Foundation in Israel since 1997. (Ha'aretz)
  • Morality for Sale - Joseph Loconte
    Each year the UN Commission on Human Rights meets for six weeks in Geneva to name the worst offending countries and adopt resolutions condemning their abuses. For years, however, the commission instead has been a haven for rogue governments - who get elected to the body in order to shield themselves from international scrutiny and criticism. Today, at least 18 of the 53 member states on the commission are themselves considered repressive. The best hope of breaking their grip may be the creation of a democracy caucus now being pushed by Chile, Poland, South Korea, and the U.S. The writer is a religion fellow at the Heritage Foundation. (New York Times)
  • Photos Don't Show Israel's Side of Conflict - Yuval Rotem
    The two-page photo editorial, "A Line in the Sand" (March 29), would have us believe that the only people being affected by the fence are the Palestinians. You have presented your judgment that Israel's anti-terror fence is somehow worse than the brutal murder of nearly 1,000 Israeli civilians and the maiming of nearly 6,300 people. The next time Israeli rescue workers are forced to collect bodies and body parts, the next time doctors spend hours removing the shrapnel of a nail-laced bomb from a 5-year-old, or the next time a father buries his pregnant wife gunned down on one of Israel's highways, I hope the Times will reevaluate its shallow, one-dimensional, and inaccurate presentation of this conflict. The writer is Consul General of Israel in Los Angeles. (Los Angeles Times)
  • Observations:

    Sharon Explains Disengagement Rationale - Herb Keinon (Jerusalem Post)

    • In a speech at the annual Israel Hi-Tech conference, Prime Minister Sharon spelled out the rationale for his disengagement plan. He said this move will stabilize the security situation, reduce terror and, primarily, "anchor a determined American position in writing that rejects any political plan which endangers Israel, any plan that does not precondition political progress with the elimination of terror."
    • This American commitment "will free us from having to accept and face pressure to adopt policies that do not consider it necessary for the Palestinians to fight terror. We must take the political initiative into our hands in order to ensure the political and security interests of Israel for many years to come."
    • Sharon said the current impasse presented him with four possibilities.
      • The first option was to essentially annex the territories, taking over responsibility for the 1.8 million Palestinians living there. "Israel has no interest in taking responsibility for and ruling over the Palestinians' lives. I do not think we should allocate billions of shekels from our budget at this time to deal with the Palestinians' education, welfare, and sewage."
      • The second option was a complete withdrawal from the territories "in return for vague promises." He said this option would be "a disaster for Israel in terms of security, as well as practically impossible to implement."
      • The third option is to maintain the status quo. But the status quo is dangerous for Israel because "a deadlock cannot last forever. The world will not allow the impasse to continue. A dead end will, sooner or later, bring about political initiatives which are dangerous to Israel."
      • The fourth option is unilateral disengagement. Its basic principles include:
        • Establishing a security line along which the IDF will be deployed, "in areas essential for Israel's defense"
        • Erecting a physical obstacle to make terrorist infiltration into large population centers more difficult
        • Withdrawal from areas which will clearly not be under Israeli control in any future permanent agreement and which are sources of great friction, "such as the Gaza Strip"
        • Obtaining the political support of the U.S. and other "friends around the world" for the plan.


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