Israel Resource Review 30th January, 2003


Hear No Evil, Report No Evil:
Anatomy of US Embassy Response to Official PA Policy
Ignoring President Bush's State of the Union's Message of Democracy in the Middle East
David Bedein


Throughout the day on Thursday, January 29th, 2004, the PLO's mainstream Fateh celebrated the fact that it had taken credit for murdering a dozen Jews and maiming another 40 Jews in Jerusalem. As the spokesperson for the PLO said to me, "After 8 Palestinians were killed yesterday in Gaza, what do you expect?" The PLO spokesman forgot to mention that the 8 Palestinians were armed members of the Islamic Jihad.

Only three hours after the PLO murders, US Ambassador to Israel Daniel Kurtzer delivered his scheduled lecture at the international colloquium on anti semitism that took place at the Inbal Hotel, only a ten minute walk from the scene of the terror attack.

Kurtzer gave an impassioned lecture on the US role in fighting expressions of anti semitism in every part of the Arab world. Yet he "forgot" to mention anything about anti semitism in the Palestinian Authority or the PLO.

President Bush, in his State of the Union Address, spoke indirectly about the Israeli Arab conflict in the Middle East in only one context: The development and preservation of democratic government, declaring that "we also hear doubts that democracy is a realistic goal for the greater Middle East, where freedom is rare. Yet it is mistaken, and condescending, to assume that whole cultures and great religions are incompatible with liberty and self-government." In that context, Bush declared that "America is a nation with a mission, and that mission comes from our most basic beliefs. We have no desire to dominate, no ambitions of empire."

However, the US embassy in Israel behaves as if the government of Israel should ignore its own democratic process, along with the real challenge posed by Israel's enemies.

On December 21, 2003, US Ambassador to Israel, Daniel Kurtzer, convened a press conference. The US official told the Israeli press corps that no matter what the Israeli courts decide concerning the legality of the property claims of families who had moved into "outposts" that are contiguous to Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria (the West Bank), he, as the US Ambassador, expected that Israel would abide by the American directive to evacuate these outposts, in accordance with US policy. Legal property rights were to have no play.

So there you have it: A US Ambassador to Israel, an Orthodox Jew, remains one of the strongest advocates of demanding that Israel unilaterally relinquish areas that Jews considered to be the heartland of the land of Israel. Kurtzer's attitude even extends to Jerusalem. When asked as to whether repairs of the Hurva Synagogue in the Jewish Quarter of the Old City of Jerusalem would be considered to be "illegal settlement activity", his answer was affirmative. The Hurva synagogue was the largest of the 57 synagogues destroyed in the Old City of Jerusalem when the Jordanians conquered that part of the city in 1949.

Most recently, the Israeli Ministry of Justice released a memo in late December in which it stated that only out of deference to the US, the Israeli government would resume tax transfers to the Palestinian Authority (PA) for humanitarian purposes. Israel had stopped funds to the PA in April 2002, after the IDF seized documents that proved the PA had siphoned funds from humanitarian aid for Fateh terror operations. The Israeli Ministry of Justice memo noted that while there had been no change in Fateh terror, these funds were anyway being transferred to the PA at the request of the US under the stewardship of Kurtzer. The same memo noted that the PA had not stopped orchestrating terror attacks on Israeli civilians.

One of those PA-orchestrated terror attacks occurred on January 7, 2004, when Ro'i Arbel, an Israeli civilian, age 28, driving north of Jerusalem, was murdered by Arab terrorists in a drive-by shooting. Ro'i left behind five children, ages four, two and triplets who are still in incubators having just been born.

The Fateh movement, the mainstream movement of the PA and PLO, under the direct control of Arafat, Abu Ala and Abu Mazen, former Palestinian prime minister, openly took credit for the murder. That same Fateh movement is now conducting ad hoc negotiations with representatives of the "Geneva Initiative", led by Yossi Beilin, the same man who initiated negotiations with the Fateh when it was against Israeli government policy to do so. The Fateh, defined by both US and Israeli law as a terrorist organization, operates under a waiver that allows it to enter into political negotiations in both countries.

Talk about a license to kill.

Israel Resource News Agency in Jerusalem asked the spokesmen for the US embassy in Israel if the US officials would condemn the Fateh for praising and taking credit for the murder of Ro'i Arbel. We received a message from the embassy that the US Ambassador would issue no such condemnation.

Following Ro'i's murder, another Arab terrorist blew herself up at a checkpoint the next morning, killing four Israelis in the process. This, only a few days after the US Ambassador had appealed to Israeli officials to exercise restraint and not to cause humiliation of Palestinian civilians at the checkpoints coming into Israel.

Yet that checkpoint suicide attack was lauded on the official Voice of Palestine radio, the official voice of the Fateh, which operates out of Arafat's PA headquarters in Ramallah. "Citizen Rim Al-Riyashi was heroically martyred when she carried out an explosive operation at the Beit Hanoun Junction, killing four soldiers of the Occupation," declared Voice of Palestine radio in its 4 p.m. newscast, about an hour after the attack in the Gaza Strip. The style of the news item, which opened the afternoon news round-up, was more like a birthday greeting than a regular news report, stressing the woman's identity and "heroic martyrdom" (in Arabic, istish-haad) repeatedly .

The US Ambassador's office was asked for comment on the official Fateh praise for the suicide bomber . However, the US embassy spokespersons answered by saying that they were not listening to the Voice of Palestine radio.

And there you have the US State Department's foreign policy in a nutshell: If US Ambassador Kurtzer is not listening to the Fateh praise of murder, then the US government will not know about it, and the waiver for the Fateh will continue so that 'political negotiations' can continue.

In their defense, a US consular official in Jerusalem wrote to our news agency that US diplomatic services in the middle east "do not have sufficient staff, nor space to add staff under our current conditions, to have someone monitoring PBC [the Voice of Palestine - DB]" and that the "lack of a clear condemnation by the PA leadership of the Erez bombing has not gone unnoticed and is also being raised with the PA."

However, the US consular official missed the point: It was not that the PA leadership did not issue a "clear condemnation" of the latest series of Arab terrorist acts; the PA praised these acts of terror on the radio and TV airwaves that the government of Israel granted to the nascent Palestinian Authority.

That is the message that US Ambassador Kurtzer is communicating to the White House, Congress and to the State Department itself. See no evil. Report no evil.

It would be consonant with the mandate of President George W. Bush for US diplomatic representatives in the Middle East to monitor and to report the consistent message of the Voice of Palestine, which promotes a total war of liberation for all of Palestine, instead of ignoring it. After all, the PA maintains the first media outlet since the Third Reich that praises the coldblooded murder of Jews, and that is why their message is so significant.

As President Bush emphasized in his State of the Union message, "America is pursuing a forward strategy of freedom in the greater Middle East. We will challenge the enemies of reform, confront the allies of terror, and expect a higher standard from our friends. To cut through the barriers of hateful propaganda, the Voice of America and other broadcast services are expanding their programming in Arabic and Persian and soon, a new television service will begin providing reliable news and information across the region."

The question remains: When will the US apply these principles in the case of Jerusalem and the people of Israel?

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Executive Summary:
Education, Indoctrination and Incitement . . .
Daphne Burdman, M.D.
Lieutenant-Colonel U.S. Army (Res., Ret.)

Other credentials of Dr. Burdman:

Diplomate of the American Board of Psychiatrists and Neurologists
Diplomate of the American Board of Pathologists
Research Associate (prior), at the Harry S.Truman Institute for Research into the Advancement of Peace, Hebrew University.

This is an executive summary of the paper published in Terrorism and Political Violence, Vol.15, No. 1, (Spring 2003).

Part I.

It was selected by the U.S. Army War College Library for inclusion in its publication Periodical Articles for Current Awareness (1 August 2003).

Common wisdom indicates that an Israeli-Palestinian peace accord must be accompanied by elimination of anti-Israel incitement in Palestinian textbooks and media as proposed by the government of Israel among the 14 limitations to be attached to the Roadmap.

Although there is some recognition of the depth and longstanding repercussions of the indoctrination to martyrdom of Palestinian youth, there have been no proposals for a broader official government policy which would be necessary for remediation of this problem. An analysis of the methods employed by the Palestinian Authority to indoctrinate youth to martyrdom reveal them to encompass basic psychological mechanisms of such profundity that the inculcated indoctrination will be extremely tenacious, longstanding, and difficult to eradicate and will necessitate an ambitious remedial deconditioning program for its reversal (in conjunction with associated political measures).

The psychological mechanisms elucidated as underlying the indoctrination are well-established cornerstones in the field of behavioral psychology , and have been investigated and authenticated by extensive research and clinical application over the years. (Psycho-analytic concepts which as yet remain predominantly speculative and theoretical, have not been considered to be relevant).

Material used for this analysis was from official Palestinian schoolbooks published by the Ministry of Education of the Palestinian Authority, together with P.A. official television programs, all directed towards conditioning (or in other words, programming) youth to accept and admire the concept of martyring themselves for Jihad, and to develop the desire and eager willingness to do so.

Results of this study indicate the following psychological mechanisms to be involved in the conditioning process:

  • Learning Theory [based on Operant Conditioning], by which is meant that behaviors which are rewarded increase in number and extent. Human approval is among the most powerful of rewards. In the P.A., acceptance of martyrdom concepts elicits strong approval, while its rejection elicits strong disapproval. The promise of the approbation of Allah and entry into Paradise is the ultimate reward.

  • The content of material learned emphasizes nationalism and religious Jihad.

  • Influence of the group and group dynamics is inherent in promoting the learning process directed toward martyrdom. Group influence has been recognized by experts as one of the fundamentals in establishing the cohesion of terrorist groups, cults and gangs. Charismatic leadership is likewise of fundamental importance.

  • Repetition and persuasion are all involved in conjunction with the above factors to condition and program the mind.

  • Increased suggestibility occurs in various situations e.g. with heightened states of anxiety, anger and emotion such as that invoked by nationalist, patriotic speeches, religious sermons and most certainly in conjunction with the P.A. T.V. clips. The beating of drums and martial music so prominently featured in the clips are powerful aids to inducing increased suggestibility.

  • This phenomenon of suggestibility is part of a light hypnotic trance. It is emphasized that this occurs in the awake state. Sleep is not necessary.

  • Extreme emotional states accompanied by increased suggestibility and the learning of new patterns of thought and behavior, involve basic elements of conditioning situations originally described by Pavlov.

  • Additionally it is important to note that growing up in any authoritarian society induces the individual to develop unequivocal dogmatic reasoning processes which prevent the intellectual flexibility necessary for compromise and negotiation. Furthermore the inherent frustrations of relating to autocratic parents and teachers, induces anger which cannot be voiced but which requires a legitimized external object on which it can be projected. Dissent within the authoritarian, in this case Palestinian, society is generally impossible. Displacement of frustration and anger onto an external scapegoat , Israel, is convenient and fuels the fires of Palestinian national aggression.

  • Statistical reviews indicate numerically the effectiveness of the P.A. campaign of indoctrination of youth.

    Although the PA blames the suffering of their children on Israel, the fact is that the P.A. has not utilized excellent programs instituted elsewhere by UNICEF and UNESCO (e.g. in Bosnia, Croatia etc.) to diagnose and treat children manifesting symptoms of severe emotional distress. The most likely explanation would appear to be that the PA considers it necessary to keep outsiders from becoming aware of the full process of Palestinian indoctrination of their children to martyrdom.

    The long term outlook is considered to be very problematic based as it is on the profound effects of the conditioning and programing process analysed above. This prognosis is supported by practical experiences gained in similar situations, for instance in the deprogramming of long-term cult members. That the PA, as a closed society, with a charismatic leader and presenting a unipolar disposition can be regarded as equivalent to a cult , makes this a valid comparison.

    This leads to the only possible conclusion that the mass indoctrination perpetrated on Palestinian youth will require intensive, prolonged deconditioning procedures, the features of which are described in Part II.

    Part II: The Deconditioning of Palestinian Society from Inculcated Hatred

    This is a new proposal relating to deconditioning of Palestinian society. [It follows from, but is not derived from the published paper summarized in part I].

    In the event of a peace declaration between the Palestinians and Israel, either as a result of a negotiated peace, or after a Capitulation by the Palestinians secondary to successful Israeli military action, the rabid hatred of Israel presently manifested by Palestinian society at large will have to be addressed, or it will obviate any possibility of a successful peace process. It is noted that a Capitulation by Israel is not envisaged, due to the declared intent of the Palestinians (both by the P.A. and by Hamas, Islamic Jihad etc.) to annihilate the State of Israel.

    Although even more complex than the post WWII situation in view of the absence of an effective, neutral coalition similar to the Allied coalition after WWII, yet it is essential to start considering the format of Reconstruction within any future Palestinian state or autonomous area which will be brought into existence.

    The following parameters are posited as cornerstones of the reconstruction process

    • Criminalization of incitement to violence and preaching of martyrdom.

    • Consideration of Nuremberg-type trials.

    • Psychological deconditioning from hatred and violence.

    • Democratization.

    • Establishment of a body representing Moderate Islam to perform as Consultants and Administrators in conjunction with secular officials both Palestinian and non-Palestinian.

    • A massive Marshall Plan type program for socio-economic development of the ensuing Palestinian society.


    In that Palestinian society has been imbued with profound hatred by deliberate programming through all available means, including societal communication, formal education within the schools, extensive well-coordinated official Palestinian Authority media programs, and messages from the mosques inspired by political (militant) Islam, establishment of a future peace between the Palestinians and Israel, will require considerably more than dismantling the terrorist organizations. Such dismantlement is an essential first step, which of necessity must be followed by a 2-pronged simultaneous program consisting of

    (1) deconditioning from hatred,

    (2) massive societal reconstruction.

    1. Palestinians, but most particularly Palestinian youth, have been conditioned to hatred of Israel, Israelis and (to a somewhat lesser extent) of the U.S by programs (described in Part I) which employ highly sophisticated psychological methods and which thereby tap profound underlying psychological processes*. It is therefore essential that psychological deconditioning, which uses similarly designed mechanisms, must be utilized to undo this profound conditioning to hatred, and must form an integral part of any reconstruction program. This will be a long and arduous process.

    It will be established in the schools, and in the media. Educationists as well as psychologists will need to be closely involved in establishing and refining such programs.

    2. Essential factors in Palestinian societal reconstruction will include:

    A. Active education about true democracy, development of a flourishing civil society, development of an active middle class with incorporation of entrepreneurial aspects, equality of women, a legal constitution which reflects contemporary aspects of democratic jurisprudence, the rule of law, due process, and human rights, and which recognizes freedom of religion and separation of Church and State. In accord with concerns about one man, one vote, one time, some authorities indicate that implementation of elections per se must needs be delayed until the democratization process is well advanced and has been seen to be successfully employed by community groups etc. at a local level.

    B. Constantly ongoing active inputs, both consultative and administrative, from prominent and respected Islamic Moderates, both secular and religious, will be indispensable and essential at all phases of education and democratization.

    C. Massive repair and development of the Palestinian nation by a contemporary Marshall Plan will be essential, running concurrently with above programs

    In order to permit development of the above processes, and drawing on the successful experiences of the post World War II programs, all forms of incitement to, teaching of, and, preaching of, violence for political ends, must be criminalized in Palestinian society. Trial by due process and strict enforcement of legal sentences will need to be implemented.

    The holding of Nuremberg-type trials will need to be strongly considered for designated war criminals. This will involve intense legal and political discussion.

    It is to be remembered that: strict monitoring will be essential at all stages in view of the unfortunate history of

    (a) consistent non-compliance by the Palestinians.

    (b) monitoring agencies who have failed to monitor for various reasons including holding the autonomy of developing nations as a sacrosanct principle, or who have abused their prerogative. Such agencies include the E.U., the U.N. and UNWRA.

    Current international attitudes present a considerable problem in terms of the commonly accepted interpretations of just wars and deprivation theory as the basis for hatred and terrorism. Recognition of issues raised above will be necessary in terms of gaining international allegiance.

    * It is highly likely that sophisticated psychologists and psychiatrists have been responsible for formulating the existing programs within the P.A. of indoctrination to hatred, violence, martyrdom, and suicide bombings

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    Fatah said to be Main Impetus for Suicide Bombings
    Middle East News Line

    Fatah said to be main impetus for suicide bombings
    JERUSALEM [MENL] -- [Middle East News Line]

    The ruling Fatah movement led by Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasser Arafat is said to be the leading force behind efforts to resume suicide bombings against Israel.

    Israeli security sources said the Fatah movement has been recruiting most of the suicide bombers in recent operations against Israel. The sources said Fatah has been recruiting in such cities as Bethlehem, Jenin, Nablus, and Tulkarm in attacks financed by Iran and Hizbullah.

    On Thursday, a Fatah operative blew himself up on an Israeli bus in Jerusalem, killing 10 people and injuring 47. The operative was identified as a PA security officer based in Bethlehem who detonated his belt full of explosives outside the residence of Prime Minister Ariel Sharon. This was the second suicide attack claimed by Fatah in as many weeks. Last week, three Israelis were killed when a women suicide bomber recruited by Fatah blew herself up at the Erez border terminal in the northern Gaza Strip.

    A statement by the Fatah-dominated Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades said the bomber was Ali Jaara who was living in Bethlehem's Aida refugee camp. Jaara served as an officer of the Preventive Security Apparatus, established to maintain internal security in the PA areas.

    The suicide attack, the statement said, was meant to mark Jaara's 25th birthday and avenge the killing of nine Palestinians in Gaza City in an Israeli military operation on Wednesday. Later, Hamas released a statement that also claimed responsibility for the Jerusalem bus bombing. Jaara was said to have been part of a faction of the PSA that supported suicide attacks against Israel. The PSA has received much of the U.S. funding of an estimated $300 million in Washington's effort to restructure and bolster Palestinian security forces and restore civilian infrastructure.

    The sources said Arafat has adopted Hizbullah as his leading ally in the insurgency war against Israel. They said Hizbullah and Iran supply Arafat's Fatah with 90 percent of its funding for operations. Iran and Hizbullah have been the leading supporters of suicide attacks against Israel.

    On early Friday, Israeli troops entered Bethlehem and the Aida camp and carried out an several arrests in what Israeli officials termed a limited response. This was the first Israeli military operation in Bethlehem since June 2003.

    This ran on the Middle East News Line on January 30th, 2004.

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