Prepared for the
Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations

in association with the Fairness Project
by the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs
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May 21, 2002

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In-Depth Issue:

Terrorism Consortium: Al-Qaeda Cooperation with Hamas and Hizballah
    News reports about al-Qaeda contacts with Hamas and Hizballah have precedents in the past.
    When he was based in Sudan, Osama bin Laden met with leaders of Hamas and Islamic Jihad during a 1995 "Islamic People's Congress."
    Bin Laden has also met separately with Imad Mughniyeh, the foreign operations chief of Hizballah, who was responsible for the 1983 truck-bombing attack in Beirut on the U.S. Marine barracks that killed 241 Americans.
    Mughniyeh originally served in Yasser Arafat's Force-17 in Beirut in the early 1980s before joining Hizballah. Some have suggested that he also had a role in the recent Karine A weapons ship from Iran.

How Many Christians Live in the Territories?
    Some 60,000 Christians remain in the West Bank and Gaza, constituting 1.5% of the Palestinian population. From the eruption of violence in Oct. 2000 until Nov. 2001, 2,766 Christian Palestinians emigrated from the West Bank, 1,640 from the Bethlehem area and 880 from Ramallah. Only 30,000 Christians remain in the Bethlehem area among 100,000 Muslims, where they had once been the majority. (Jerusalem Post)

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Daily Alert Back Issues

The Washington Rally for Israel
  • Speeches
  • Photos
  • News Resources - USA and Europe:
  • Terrorist Summit - Al-Qaeda, Hamas, and Hizballah
    Leaders of al-Qaeda met in a summit with leaders of Hamas and Hizballah, as well as a number of other groups linked to terrorism, in late March, according to U.S. intelligence and law enforcement officials. FBI Director Robert Mueller also warned that he expected terrorists to mount "walk-in" suicide bombing attacks in the United States. (ABC News)
  • Not Just Al-Qaeda, Hizballah Also Targets U.S.
    Senator Bob Graham (D-FL), Chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, said on the "Today" show that al-Qaeda is not the only enemy: "There are several international terrorist groups which have abilities, in some cases greater than al-Qaeda, and a similar desire to attack the United States." He specifically mentioned Hizballah and Egyptian Islamic Jihad. (Reuters)
  • Arafat Critics Close In
    Yasser Arafat, for decades the very personification of Palestinian aspirations, is now in deep trouble with his own people, according to Palestinian political analysts and Israeli intelligence officials who see his authority challenged by a younger generation of street leaders. (New York Times)
  • Saudi Arabia Spends Millions on PR
    The Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia has paid Qorvis Communications $3.8 million since it signed a one-year $200,000 a-month contract on Nov. 14 to position the Kingdom as a trusted ally of the U.S. (O'Dwyer's PR Daily)
  • News Resources - Israel and Mideast:

  • Tel Aviv Tower Attack Thwarted
    According to Brig. Gen. Yossi Kupperwasser, the IDF thwarted a Palestinian plan to detonate a one-ton bomb. Other sources have speculated that the bomb attack was intended for the parking lot beneath the twin 50-story Azrieli Towers in Tel Aviv. (Jerusalem Post/IMRA)
        Since Operation Defensive Shield, Israel has foiled 7 bombing attempts in Tel Aviv and 3 in Jerusalem.
  • Palestinian Power Struggle Deepens, as Gaza Security Chief Gains Ground
    Gaza Strip security chief Mohammad Dahlan appears to be emerging as the winner in the power struggle that has followed Israel�s recent counter-terrorism sweep. Dahlan, who heads the Preventive Security Service in the Gaza Strip, enjoys Arafat�s trust and maintains good contacts with the Americans, the Egyptians, Hamas, and even the Israelis. (JTA)
  • Global Commentary and Think Tank Analysis (Best of U.S., UK, and Israel):

  • Jibril Blames Israel for Son's Assassination - Ze'ev Schiff
    Jihad Jibril was one of the operations officers for the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine-General Command. Behind this organization lies a wake of dead Israelis, including children, as well as Europeans and others the organization has killed. (Ha'aretz)
  • Intelligence-Driven Operations - Eran Lerman
    Recent IDF operations conform to the modern concept of a "Revolution in Military Affairs" (RMA), a doctrine that implies the application of superiority in knowledge (and information technology) to the "domination of the battlespace" and the conduct of combined-arms operations. The Americans in Afghanistan came close to full application of this concept, with remarkable results; today the IDF replicates this effort in the PA areas. (Jerusalem Post)
  • The "I Control America" Hoax - James Taranto
    In her May 9 syndicated column, Georgie Anne Geyer claimed that Prime Minister Sharon told his cabinet recently, "I control America." We couldn't find any evidence anywhere that Sharon ever said this, but we found a similar quote attributed to Israel Radio from the Islamic Association for Palestine. The pro-Israel media-watchdog group Camera has called the quote a hoax and says Israel Radio has confirmed that no such broadcast exists.There's certainly room for a diversity of opinions on the Mideast conflict, but even opinion writers--and their editors--have a duty not to publish blatant falsehoods. (
  • Palestinian Reform: A User's Guide - Tony Karon
    The demand for reform of Arafat's apparatus has been strongest among Palestinians themselves, and it has reached fever pitch since Israel's "Operation Defensive Shield." The legislature is demanding that the post of a prime minister be created to oversee the day-to-day running of the PA. (Time)
  • Palestinian Reform is a Fragile Thing - Editorial
    Suddenly "reform" of the Palestinian Authority seems to be on the lips of all the Middle East players from Washington to Ramallah. If you believe this would have come about without the campaign of the Israeli army to root out terrorism from the West Bank, perhaps you're in the market for a bridge. (Boston Herald)
  • What Reforms? - Ehud Ya'ari
    Arafat has no intention of turning into a Palestinian Queen Mother; he is trying to bury the demands for reform in committees. (Jerusalem Report)
  • Documents Detail Saudi Terror Links - Kenneth R. Timmerman
    The documents include a damning letter from the Saudis complaining that the Palestinians had exposed the secret financial ties by allowing the publication of a Feb. 19 report in the PA publication al-Hayat al-Jedida thanking Saudi Arabia for assisting the families of terrorists killed in attacks on Israelis. (Insight Magazine)
  • Perfidious Princes - Editorial
    CBS News reported that a videotape of Daniel Pearl's final hours was disseminated on the Internet from web sites originating in Saudi Arabia. Face it: Saudi Arabia has long been on the wrong side of anti-Western terrorism. Only now is the post-9/11 spotlight beginning to shine on Riyadh's complicity. (New York Post)
  • In the Former Soviet Union, Islamists Turn to Anti-Semitism - Lev Gorodetsky
    Jews in the former Soviet Union are increasingly worried that they might become targets in the war with Islamic fundamentalists. (JTA)
  • Talking Points:

    Israel's Conditions for Syrian Participation in a Regional Peace Conference -
    as outlined by Prime Minister Ariel Sharon to the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, May 20, 2002

    • Expel 11 terrorist organizations from Syria
    • Withdraw Syrian army forces from Lebanon
    • Halt cooperation with Hizballah
    • Expel the Iranian Revolutionary Guard from Lebanon
    • Halt the transfer of weapons to Lebanon from Iran via Syria
    • Implement UN Resolution 425 by allowing the Lebanese Army to deploy on the border with Israel
    • Disarm Hizballah
    • Provide information on Israel's missing soldiers
    Saudi Arabia has made Syrian participation a condition for their joining any regional conference. (Jerusalem Post)

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