Prepared for the
Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations

by the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs
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April 13, 2004

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In-Depth Issues:

Israeli Military Intelligence: Iraq Possessed Weapons of Mass Destruction (Yediot Ahronot-Hebrew; 11 Apr 04)
    IDF Head of Military Intelligence Maj.-Gen. Aharon Zeevi Farkash said in an interview:
    Q: Can you say assuredly if Iraq did or did not have weapons of mass destruction?
    A: "From all the material in our hands, I can say that Iraq continued, even after the expulsion of UN inspectors, to maintain its residual capability.
    We have intelligence evidence that they continued to deal in this matter.
    I am speaking about tens of launchers and tens of missiles and several chemical and biological warheads.
    They hid them or they transferred them to another location. In the end, they [the U.S.] will get to them."
    Q: A year ago in an interview in Yediot Ahronot, the head of military intelligence argued that items were secretly transferred from Saddam Hussein's palaces to Syria.
    A: "Today we are more than persuaded that equipment was transferred which involved the office of the Iraqi president and the presidential palace in Syria.
    What equipment was transferred and to where, we don't know.
    There is no doubt that these were sensitive items which had significant volume because more than one truckload was involved."
    See also IDF Chief of Staff Believes Iraqi WMD Will Be Found - Amos Harel (Ha'aretz)

Syria Smuggles Missiles, WMD to Sudan (Middle East Newsline)
    Western intelligence sources say Syria has been flying shipments of Scud C and Scud D extended-range missiles as well as WMD components to warehouses in Khartoum since at least January 2004.
    "There is widespread concern in the Syrian regime that Damascus will be the next to face heavy U.S. and international pressure to open its WMD facilities in the wake of the Libyan example," a senior intelligence source said.
    "The Syrians have decided that they want to take some of their assets out of the country."

11% of Palestinians Killed by Other Palestinians, Study Shows - Arnon Regular (Ha'aretz)
    Over 11% of Palestinians killed since September 2000 died at the hands of other Palestinians, according to a report by the Jerusalem-based Palestinian Human Rights Monitoring Group (PHRMG), headed by Bassem Eid.
    The report states that 297 Palestinians were killed by other Palestinians.
    See also The "Intra'fada": An Analysis of Internal Palestinian Violence - Leonie Schultens (PHRMG)

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Back Issues

News Resources - North America, Europe, and Asia:

  • Bush: Israeli Withdrawal from Gaza Part of Road Map
    After meeting with Egyptian President Mubarak in Texas, President Bush said: "We both are in agreement that if Israel makes the decision to withdraw, it doesn't replace the road map, it is a part of the road map, so that we can continue progress toward the two-state solution."
        "The problem is, is that there's terrorists who will kill people in order to stop the process. And that's why it is essential that we work together to stop terrorist killing. There will never be a Palestinian state, in my judgment, if terrorists are willing to kill. And so the first step we've got to do is to work on the mutual security concerns of the region. And we can't let people blow up a process." (White House)
  • Bush Welcomes Gaza Plan, Without Backing It Fully
    President Bush, who will meet with Prime Minister Sharon at the White House on Wednesday, signaled that the U.S. would be happy to see a withdrawal from Gaza, but was silent on Israel's hopes of securing approval from the administration for its plan to hold on to contested portions of the West Bank. (New York Times)
        See also Bush Qualifies Praise for Israeli Plan (Washington Post)
  • Gen. Abizaid: Iran, Syria Involved in Iraq
    Gen. John Abizaid, head of U.S. Central Command, said Monday, "Clearly, there are indications from intelligence folks that there are some Iranian activities going on that are unhelpful...and there's also unhelpful actions coming from Syria." (Defense Department)
        See also Iran's Role in the Recent Uprising in Iraq
    A former Iranian intelligence official in charge of activities in Iraq, identified as Haj Sa'idi, told the London Arabic daily Al-Sharq Al-Awsat that the Iranian plan to turn Iraq into another Iran involves the recruitment of thousands of young Shi'ites. He said more than 300 reporters and technicians who are working now in Iraq for television and radio networks, newspapers, and other media agencies are in fact members of the Al-Quds Army and the Revolutionary Guards intelligence units. He also claimed that Iranian allocations for activities in Iraq reached $70 million per month. (MEMRI)
  • News Resources - Israel and the Mideast:

  • Hungary Holds 3 Arabs Who Planned to Kill Israeli President
    Hungarian police have detained three Arab nationals suspected of planning to assassinate Israeli President Moshe Katsav during his state visit to Budapest that begins on Tuesday. (Ha'aretz)
  • Palestinian Plan to Detonate AIDS-Tainted Bomb Foiled - Amir Rapaport
    Security forces uncovered and prevented a plan by a Fatah-Tanzim terror cell to add blood contaminated with AIDS to an explosive charge and detonate it in an Israeli city during Passover. (
  • Palestinians Urge Holy War Against U.S. - Khaled Abu Toameh
    Thousands of Palestinians staged rallies over the weekend to mark the first anniversary of the fall of Baghdad, calling on Iraqis to rise up against the U.S. in a holy war. Following Friday prayers, protesters burned Israeli and American flags and chanted slogans against President Bush and Prime Minister Sharon. In Nablus, thousands of Palestinians took to the streets, carrying pictures of former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein and Iraqi flags. In Gaza, Hamas leader Abdel Aziz Rantisi Thursday sent his greetings to Iraqi Shiite insurgent leader Moqtada al-Sadr, saying, "We support you and God be with you."  (Jerusalem Post)
  • IDF Foils Attack on Netzarim - Amos Harel
    IDF soldiers killed two gunmen and wounded a third Monday when eight Palestinians tried to attack Netzarim in the Gaza Strip, army sources said. (Ha'aretz)
  • Global Commentary and Think-Tank Analysis (Best of U.S., UK, and Israel):

  • Our Man in Cairo - Editorial
    The largest obstacle to President Bush's democracy initiative in the greater Middle East may be Hosni Mubarak, the president of Egypt. Mubarak, 75, is an unrepentant autocrat who has ruled his country under emergency law for 23 years; his repressive policies have helped fuel al-Qaeda, whose top leadership has included a number of Egyptians. "Sixty years of Western nations excusing and accommodating the lack of freedom in the Middle East did nothing to make us safe," Mr. Bush said in November. Egypt has been at the center of that flawed policy. Since 1979, the U.S. has showered the regime with some $50 billion in aid while asking for little outside a cooperative foreign policy. (Washington Post)
        See also Anti-Semitism in Egypt Continues
    In Egypt, anti-Semitism remains virtually unchallenged by government leaders, while mainstream publications give voice to the most vicious anti-Semitic caricatures and canards imaginable," according to a new ADL report, Anti-Semitism in Egypt: Media and Society. (Anti-Defamation League)
  • Israel's National Security Doctrine After the Fall of Saddam - Gal Luft
    With the decline of the Iraqi military, in the short run the threat of an eastern front against Israel no longer exists, but it is premature to assume that the threat from the east has been permanently removed. There are still several unknowns including the nature of the new Iraqi regime.
        The Jordan River Valley separates the future Palestinian state from Jordan in case the Palestinians ever try to undermine and topple the Jordanian monarchy. Therefore, Israeli presence along the Jordan River is of critical importance to the security and stability of the Hashemite regime. Additionally, a joint Jordanian-Palestinian border and Palestinian control over the bridges of the Jordan River would allow the Palestinians to import heavy weapons, terrorists, and military reinforcements from abroad. (Saban Center for Middle East Policy/Brookings Institution)
  • Islamist Fifth Columns - Arnaud de Borchgrave
    Increasingly, Europeans find themselves surrounded by immigrants who have little respect for local traditions. In the Netherlands, Muslims are a majority among children under 14 in the country's four largest cities. In Brussels, the capital of the European Union, Muhammad has been the name most frequently given for newborn baby boys. Osama is a close second. A paper found in the apartment of one Moroccan terrorist accused of involvement in the Madrid train bombing said, "We must develop immigration into Western countries as the path to the glory of Islam and the destruction of the godless pagans."
        The fifth column is also alive and well in the U.S. Some 400 American Muslims are currently being monitored 24/7 by the FBI. Either they have been fingered by Islamist prisoners, or phone taps or e-mail intercepts have shown their verbal propensity for violence against the hated American enemy. (Washington Times)
  • Observations:

    Sharon Names Some Areas to Remain in Israeli Hands - Aluf Benn and Nathan Guttman (Ha'aretz)

    Prime Minister Sharon said Monday:

    • The city of "Ma'aleh Adumim will remain part of the State of Israel forever and ever. It will be included in the envelope fence around Jerusalem in order to avoid terror attacks on it and in its environs."
    • "Ariel, the Etzion Bloc, Giv'at Zeev will remain in Israeli hands and will continue to develop. Hebron and Kiryat Arba will be strong."
    • "Disengagement is good for security and it gives us a free hand to fight against terror. Disengagement is good for Israel politically. Israel will become much stronger and will be freed from pressures."
    • "The Palestinians may understand that disengagement is a mortal blow to them. Otherwise they would not be struggling against it so much all over the world."

        Daily Alert did not appear on April 12, the seventh day of Passover.
        Today's issue was prepared in Israel on Isru Chag.

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