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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June 4, 2002

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In-Depth Issue:

Fuad Shubaki's Yemeni Passport
    The passport of Fuad Shubaki, Yasser Arafat's chief financial advisor, was found by the IDF during Operation Defensive Shield. Shubaki traveled on a Yemeni dipomatic passport. He visited Libya between 2-6 August 2001. He entered Iraq several times; between 3-11 November he reached understandings with Iraqi authorities over the smuggling of arms to the Palestinian Authority via Jordan.
    While Shubaki was one of the masterminds of the Karine-A weapons ship that came from Iran, no Iranian stamps were found in his passport.
    Shubaki's activities are also known from another captured document: he was sent a receipt from the pro-Fatah al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades requesting payment for equipment including explosive devices. The document established the connection between suicide attacks and Yasser Arafat's paymaster. (Maariv and other sources)

Muslim Political Involvement in the U.S.

  • Muslim political involvement is still in the early stages, with more focus on local community involvement than on developing a cohesive national agenda.
  • The number of mosques in the U.S. was estimated at 1,209 in 2000.
  • Islamic groups estimate the number of Muslims in the U.S. at about 6 million. The Pew Research Council and the City University of New York put the number at about 1 million.
  • Muslim population centers include Dearborn, Los Angeles, Newark, Chicago, Atlanta, and the Dallas-Fort Worth area.
  • Thirty percent of American Muslims who regularly attend mosques are African-American, while 25 percent are Arab and 33 percent are South Asian, according to the Council on American-Islamic Relations.     (Congressional Quarterly)

    Useful Reference:

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  • Myths & Facts: A Guide to the Arab-Israeli Conflict

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  • Speeches
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  • News Resources - USA and Europe:
  • Egypt Warned U.S. of September 11, Mubarak Asserts/Proposes Palestinian State Without Borders
    Egyptian intelligence warned American officials about a week before Sept. 11 that Osama bin Laden's network was in the advance stages of executing a significant operation against an American target, President Hosni Mubarak said in an interview on Sunday. Mubarak cited the warning as evidence that Egypt has become an increasingly valuable intelligence partner to the United States in the war against terrorism. Regarding a Palestinian state, he proposed: "I think to declare a state just theoretically like this and then to sit and negotiate what would be the border, what about Jerusalem, I think it may work." (New York Times)
  • Egypt Buys North Korean Missiles
    Egypt recently purchased 24 No-Dong medium-range missiles from North Korea, according to Frank Gaffney, president of the Washington-based Center for Security Policy, testifying before a House oversight panel on terrorism. Their only conceivable purpose is against Israel, he added. (Middle East Newsline)
  • CIA Chief Meets Israeli Leaders in Jerusalem/Sharon to Meet Bush in Washington
    CIA Director George Tenet met with Israeli leaders during his current mission designed to persuade Yasser Arafat to reorganize his security forces. Prime Minister Sharon will meet with President Bush at the White House on Monday to review bilateral issues. (Washington Post/Jerusalem Post)
  • Top Saudi Imam Sees Hindu-Christian-Jewish Conspiracy
    Sheik Abd-al-Rahman al-Sudays, the imam of the Mosque of Mecca, has called on the Islamic world to unite against a worldwide conspiracy of Hindus, Christians, Jews, and secularists threatening Islamic moral values. The comments of this government-appointed imam, on the main television channel, are seen as an indicator of the government's views. (Washington Times)
  • Alternative Peace Talks Proposed
    Israelis and Palestinians should consider setting up a "joint shadow government for peace" if official talks continue to remain blocked, said Israeli participants at a Guardian newspaper dialogue held in Weston, England. The two days of talks centered on how the progress in Northern Ireland might inform the stalemated process in the Middle East. Israeli participants included Yossi Beilin, David Grossman, Naomi Chazan, Amnon Lipkin-Shahak, and Avraham Burg. (Guardian-UK/New York Times)
  • News Resources - Israel and Mideast:

  • Palestinians Ignore Court Call to Free PFLP Leader
    The Palestinian Cabinet countermanded the decision of its own supreme court to release Ahmed Saadat, the leader of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), now held under American and British guard in Jericho. The PFLP claimed responsibility for the assassination of Israeli cabinet minister Rehavam Zeevi in October. (Jerusalem Post)
  • Investigate CNN for Incitement
    Recently, CNN interviewed Chen Keinan, whose baby daughter and mother were killed by a suicide bomber in Petach Tikva. While the interview was aired in the U.S., CNN's international programming also broadcast an interview with the mother of the Palestinian suicide bomber, and failed to fully convey the Israeli perspective. An Israeli non-profit group has called on Israeli legal authorities to investigate CNN practices. (Maariv/Yediot Ahronot)
  • Global Commentary and Think Tank Analysis (Best of U.S., UK, and Israel):

  • Iran: Clear and Present Danger - Ze'ev Schiff
    Iranian terrorism is aimed not only against Israel; it is also perpetrated in the Gulf states, in Turkey, in Africa, and in Central Asia. The Iranians now have 10 Shihab-3 1,300-km-range missiles in their arsenal. The thrust of Iran's manufacture of long-range missiles and weapons of mass destruction is to pose a potential threat to Israel and other countries in the region. (Ha'aretz)
  • Iran Hosts Conference to Support Palestinian Uprising
    Marked by calls from leading Islamic figures for a continuation of the armed struggle and rejection of negotiations with Israel, the two-day conference in Tehran brought together Iranian and other Islamic politicians, as well as leaders of Islamic Jihad, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine - General Command, and Lebanon's Hizbollah. (Financial Times)
  • Arafat's "Zero" Motivation - Matt Rees
    Close aides to Arafat doubt that the Palestinian leader actually wants the terror attacks to stop, since the Israeli retaliations that inevitably follow deflect attention from his pledges to reform his corrupt and dictatorial government. "This man doesn't want to change," says an Arafat aide. (Time)
  • Slightly Different Terror - Ehud Ya'ari
    Following Israel's Operation Defensive Shield, the current wave of suicide attacks doesn't have the same momentum or the same dimensions. This terrorism is being perpetrated by the remnants of the damaged infrastructures, employing youngsters with limited experience. (Jerusalem Report)
  • Palestinian Media Back to Form - Michael Widlanski
    For the last two weeks, perhaps as a lead-up to the World Cup soccer tournament, Palestinian television has featured afternoon movies that include Israeli soldiers (played by Egyptian and Palestinian actors) shooting ten-year-old Palestinian children playing soccer. (Media Line)
  • Gaza Dispatch: Trials and Error - Dan Ephron
    As Gaza's premiere human rights lawyer, Raji Sourani has seen his countrymen arrested arbitrarily by the Palestinian Authority, beaten in captivity, held for months without trial, and denied the right to a basic defense in court. Arafat's State Security Courts have tried hundreds of Palestinians, with not a single acquittal. Of those convicted, only about 50 have ties to Hamas. Since the renewed fighting, the Security Courts have tried dozens of people as collaborators. (New Republic)
  • Talking Points:

    Israel Can't Do Business With Terrorists - Jerusalem Mayor Ehud Olmert
        (Wall Street Journal)

    • Despite all the tough talk and demand for reform, Arafat's entrenched Palestinian Authority regime is constitutionally unable and morally unwilling to abandon its violent struggle against Israel.
    • The new American plan calls for a reorganization of the Palestinian security forces under a unified command. The hope is that they will miraculously be transformed into a law-abiding legion that will root out terrorists.
    • The terrorist leaders and their activists cannot suddenly be forgiven or pardoned just because a new political initiative is underway.
    • Many are placing their new hopes on Gaza preventive security service boss Mohammed Dahlan who has permitted Gaza to become a safe haven for hundreds of fugitive terrorists fleeing Israeli forces.
    • Dahlan, along with his assistant Rashid Abu-Shabak, are the primary suspects in the terror attack on an Israeli school bus in Kfar Darom in November 2000 that left half a dozen children maimed. No democratic state should ever allow itself to do business with those individuals who deliberately target a school bus.
    • The current thinking that Dahlan can bring reform and law enforcement to the Palestinians is totally misguided. Dahlan and Arafat can never be reformed; they must be eradicated by force.

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