?Apartheid on the Prairie? - A PR Debacle

What the PLO and Peace Now do to "sell" their claim of the "settler-criminals" to the media is to operate tours of the Jewish communities of <i>Yesha</i> for the clueless foreign media. We have confirmed with Peace Now spokesmen that they actually tell the reporters that the settlers live in caves, waiting in ambush to pounce on passing Arab vehicles... [and] that the entire area was stolen from A

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Writing on the wall: Death to Jews
Writing on the wall: Death to Jews
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The Jewish Council for Public Affairs, the umbrella arm of the organized Jewish community in the United States, has scheduled a debate on the subject of Israel's settlement policies for their annual conference, which is slated for February 23rd in Baltimore.

JCPA had received a volume of material culled from organizations that have made the case to the American government and the Jewish community in the US that the Jewish communities Israel established beyond the1948/1967 armistice lines has been some kind of criminal act, and that these Jewish communities somehow stand as an obstacle to peace.

It would surprise most people to know that the Israeli Jewish communities of Judea, Samaria, Katif (Gaza) (Yesha) and the Golan Heights have not displaced a single Arab village, because of a principle laid down by Prime Minister Menachem Begin in 1977. Begin insisted that no Jewish town in the areas to be settled by Israel would displace an Arab village - unlike the policies of the Israeli Labor party, which - as a matter of policy - built Jewish communities to replace the 531 Arab villages abandoned by their Arab residents during the 1948 war.

Yet the PLO/Peace-Now misinformation machine, working with funding from the European Union, has set up an organization known as "Settlement Watch", which swamps the media with timely reports that portray the Jewish residents of Yesha as criminal interlopers who have encroached on Arab land. An array of human rights organizations, all funded through the New Israel Fund (NIF) and the EU, overwhelm the media with supportive data, with the aim of painting the ugliest picture possible of the Jewish residents of these areas. All you have to do is to read the reports of B'tzelem, the human rights organization, funded by the NIF and the EU and staffed by Arab researchers sympathetic to the PLO, and you will get the idea that the Jews of Yesha must have been trained by gangster Louis Lepke's Murder, Incorporated.

What the PLO and Peace Now do to "sell" their claim of the "settler-criminals" to the media is to operate tours of the Jewish communities of Yesha for the clueless foreign media. We have confirmed with Peace Now spokesmen that they actually tell the reporters that the settlers live in caves, waiting in ambush to pounce on passing Arab vehicles. We have also confirmed with Peace Now spokesmen that they will actually stand on top of a hill overlooking Gush Etzion with their media guests and say to them that the entire area was stolen from Arab farmers, portraying the Jews there as the personification of "apartheid on the prairie".

To paraphrase the Nazi propagandist Josef Goebels, a lie repeated often enough becomes believable. A lie which is repeatedly sold to the media with no rebuttal becomes part of the media gospel.

It is difficult to forget the Peace Now press conference in November, 2000, when Peace Now appealed to the PLO to stop firing in the direction of the Jerusalem neighborhood of Gilo. Only in the direction of Gilo. Murdering Jews elsewhere beyond the ?Green Line? was therefore permissible.

The strategy of demonizing the Jewish population of Yesha was formally proposed to Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin by his public relations maven, Yekutiel Federman, on the pages of the Mapam political publication, Al HaMishmar, in October 1993. Federman's strategy was carefully adopted as the methodology of promoting the Oslo process. In depends on portraying "land-grabbing Jews" in Yesha and the Golan as the 5% of the Israeli population that stands in the way of peace with the PLO, which supposedly became Israel's peace partners and which was supposedly ready to settle for the West Bank and Gaza as the area for an eventual Palestinian Arab entity. Jews who raised questions about the Oslo process were simply defined as "warmongers". The fact that for the past ten years the PLO and the Palestinian Authority have continued to demand all of Palestine, in all Arabic public statements and all Arabic publications, has hardly been reported. In fact, in a parting opinion article (Ha?aretz Feb. 5, 2002) as a member of the Knesset, Peace Now founder and Meretz MK Professor Amnon Rubinstein noted that the PLO defines the entire state of Israel as one immense illegal settlement, where it is permissible for the PLO to murder Jews.

It is my hope and prayer that Jewish organizations will allocate resources to facilitate tours of Judea, Samaria, Katif and Jerusalem for foreign journalists, along with well-researched reports, to counter hostile propaganda with factual press briefings, interviews with victims of terror, and more.

Meanwhile, if the JCPA does pass a resolution that calls on Israel to remove Jews from Judea, Samaria, Katif and the Golan, then the name of the organization may soon be changed to the ?Judenrein Council for Public Affairs?.
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David Bedein is Bureau Chief of the Israel Resource News Agency, located in Beit Agron International Press Center, Jerusalem (www.IsraelBehindtheNews.com).