Monday, May 29, 2017

The dismal failure of the Palestinian elections

The report below from a Palestinian newspaper reports on the failure of the democratic system for the Palestinians

Al-Quds News, Ramallah, – Abdul Sattar Kassem  May 18

Not many have noticed, but the Palestinian Authority held municipal elections in Palestine last week. The elections were extremely quiet and managed to fall off the radar screen of most political commentators and major news outlets.

They were marked by very low participation rates, together with Hamas’s refusal to participate in the process altogether. Granted, even if Hamas had chosen to participate, it is likely that the PA’s security agencies, together with Israel, would have detained its nominees in order to prevent them from running for office.

This casts a big doubt on the actual democratic nature of Palestinian elections, whether all Palestinian factions support them or not.

The elections were indisputably a dismal failure, spelling out a worrying future for democracy in Palestine.

First, most Palestinian organizations did not bother competing in the elections. The few that did chose to run under family lists in the large villages. This leads me to my second point: the growing appeal of clan politics.

In the absence of well-defined political organizations, families and clans took the place of political parties.

Palestinians went to the ballots and voted for their representatives on the basis of tribal interests.

This is a dangerous development. Tribal politics will divide the Palestinian public, instead of bringing it together.

It will weaken the Palestinian people in their struggle against the Israeli occupation. Finally, the low participation rates signal that the Palestinian public lost faith in its political leaders and institutions. The public has little, if any, faith in the democratic political process.

These elections should raise a red flag to anyone who cares about the future of Palestine. Their dismal failure marks the disintegration of the Palestinian Authority and, possibly, the beginning of the end. When the people, their representatives, and even their leaders lose faith in the process, the system is left with very little legitimacy to operate. 

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Guess what? The world needs Israel

 DAVID SUISSA   MAY 22, 2017| 
Since its inception, Israel has been a country under siege. When it’s not attacked by terrorist forces, it’s attacked by diplomatic ones. Over the past few decades, it has been condemned mainly for its failure to make peace with the Palestinians. This conflict has dominated global consciousness like no other. Throughout the Middle East, it has been used by dictators to divert attention away from the oppression of their people.

President Donald Trump’s eagerness to make the “ultimate deal,” which he reiterated during his visit to Israel, only continues the obsession with the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Whether we like it or not, it is the conflict, as much as anything, that has shaped Israel’s narrative throughout much of the world.

And yet, despite all that, something is changing. New winds are blowing. Slowly, quietly, a parallel narrative about Israel is beginning to emerge. And since the conflict with the Palestinians is so intractable, my sense is that this new narrative will play an increasingly greater role in shaping Israel’s future.

In essence, more and more countries are looking at Israel and saying: “Politics or no politics, these guys can help us. They’re doing things no one else is doing. They seem to have a pulse on this crazy and fast-changing new world we’re in.”
If your country, for example, has a problem with cybersecurity that can endanger your infrastructure, and you hear that Israel has unique technology that can fix the problem, are you going to pass on that solution because the Palestinian conflict is unresolved?

Similarly, if your people are running out of drinking water and you need Israel’s cutting-edge desalination technology, or if your country is under threat from Islamic terrorists and you know that Israelis have the most expertise in that area, will you let the Palestinian conflict get in the way of your core interests?

Giant nations like India and China, as well as emerging nations on the African continent, are not waiting for a peace breakthrough before engaging with Israel. Why should they? Doing business with Israel is in their interest. It boosts their economies. It strengthens their countries.

The same thing has been happening in Israel’s own backyard. In a 2012 report titled, “The Badly Kept Secret of Israel’s Trade Throughout the Muslim World,” Haaretz detailed Israel’s low-key but growing engagement with its Arab and Muslim neighbors, including the export of medical, agricultural and water technologies to the Gulf states.

In terms of security, Sunni-dominated countries like Egypt, Saudi Arabia and other Gulf states need Israel’s military might to fend off their sworn enemy, the predatory Iranian Shia regime. There’s a reason the Gulf states compiled a proposal to take “unprecedented steps toward normalization with Israel,” as reported last week in the Wall Street Journal.

They need Israel.

Sure, they had to throw in the obligatory statements about Israel making gestures to the Palestinians. But don’t kid yourself– these requests have softened with the years. They’re a sign of the shifting tides. These Arab countries are feeling vulnerable and they need help, even from Israel. Drumming up hatred for the Jewish state because of the Palestinian problem is not as good for business as it used to be.

None of this means that Israel shouldn’t make every effort to resolve its conflict with the Palestinians, regardless of the odds. A solution is strongly in Israel’s interest. And in global diplomacy, optics matter and effort counts, even if it ends in failure.
To its credit, though, Israel has never let the failure of peace and the presence of war demoralize the nation. While much of the world condemned the country, and hostile neighbors launched attacks, Israel kept right on innovating to meet the challenges of the modern world. Instead of being paralyzed by a siege mentality, the little Jewish state pushed relentlessly to build a thriving nation, with all of its flaws and imperfections.

And now, suddenly it seems, this tiny nation is in big demand. From medical breakthroughs to green technology to cybersecurity to digital innovation to water conservation to food security, Israel is at the forefront of creating solutions for the new century.

This is not Start-Up Nation as a tool for better hasbara, or positive propaganda. This is Start-Up Nation as a tool to better the world.

It must make Palestinian leaders sick to see the hated Zionist state start to thrive on a global scale. Maybe they were hoping that by refusing all peace offers, glorifying terror and attacking Israel’s legitimacy, they would make Israel implode. The opposite happened.

We can only hope that, one day, they too will realize that building hatred for the Jewish state is bad for peace and bad for business.

Monday, May 22, 2017

Israelis and Palestinians as Co-Workers

Two stories indicate that if the is willingness by leaders on BOTH sides to live together, there is reason for hope. Two stories this week are worth reporting.


a-   Sodastream’s Palestinian Employees To Receive Renewed Work Permits

Sharon Udasin  May 22, 2017

Workers brush aside long commute to work for CEO Birnbaum, a ‘man of peace.’

 A group of 74 Palestinian employees will be returning to work at SodaStream, after the government rescinded their work permits more than a year ago.

“SodaStream is our second home,” Ali Jafar, 42, told The Jerusalem Post on Sunday.
“When you have the opportunity to return home, you return.”

After years of loyal work at the company – and hours of daily travel – Jafar and his Jerusalem-area Palestinians colleagues received notice in February 2016 that the government would no longer be renewing their entry permits. Last week, however, they learned that their permits were finally being renewed – and that they would likely be able to return to the company’s Negev Desert factory within just a few weeks.
“If you like someone, you have to go to him wherever he lives,” said Jafar, who worked for SodaStream for three years.

The Palestinian employees had originally worked at the company’s former headquarters in the West Bank industrial zone of Mishor Adumim, near Ma’aleh Adumim.

In 2015, SodaStream moved from Mishor Adumim to an expansive campus at the Idan Negev industrial area, a joint work zone for the Beduin town of Rahat, the Jewish community of Lehavim and the Bnei Shalom Regional Council.

While 500 Palestinian employees lost their jobs after the Mishor Adumim plant closed, 74 of them, including Jafar, were able to continue working at the firm’s new plant in the Negev until the government eventually revoked their permits.

“We are delighted to welcome back our 74 devoted Palestinian employees, who are able to join their 1,500 friends at our Rahat facility in the Negev,” Daniel Birnbaum, global CEO of SodaStream, said on Sunday.

“The Israeli government did the moral and honorable thing to grant work permits to our employees, who can now provide for their families and also prove that coexistence is possible.”


b.- Co-Workers

Oded Revivi May 21, 2017

President Trump has described the conflict between the Israelis and the Palestinians in terms of a business negotiation. Days after taking office he told The Wall Street Journal that Middle East peace would be “the ultimate deal.”

Mr. Trump might be onto something. Conventional wisdom for almost a century has dictated that for peace to prevail, Israelis and Palestinians must be physically separated. But separation is one of the main reasons the conflict drags on interminably. Peace is fostered over generations, through personal bonds and even business relationships.

Most Israelis and Palestinians don’t interact with someone from the other side on a daily basis. The exceptions are the 450,000 Israelis and more than one million Palestinians who live side by side in Judea and Samaria, or what many call the West Bank. The tens of thousands who work together every day in the area’s 14 industrial zones have built the closest bonds.

During his visit to Israel this week, Mr. Trump should drop in on a business like Lipski Plastics in the Barkan Industrial Park, some 15 miles east of Tel Aviv. Half the company’s workers are Palestinian and half are Israeli. They eat, laugh and solve problems together. The Palestinians at Lipski make four times the average wage in the autonomous Palestinian areas. Many are in senior management, with dozens of Israeli employees beneath them. Muslim, Christian or Jew, these people return home each day with a sense of accomplishment knowing that they can provide for their families with dignity and pride.

Islands of peace like Barkan show what could be achieved on a massive scale by a leader with true vision. Sadly, for decades these examples have been largely ignored or boycotted because of the flawed notion that any Israeli presence in Judea and Samaria is an impediment to peace.

The new White House has already brought a fresh perspective to the Middle East. Mr. Trump’s special envoy, Jason Greenblatt, broke with decades of failed State Department policy by meeting in March with a delegation of Israeli residents of Judea and Samaria. He also met with young Palestinians and Israelis from across the political, religious and socioeconomic spectrum. These meetings demonstrated a genuine attempt to understand the reality on the ground, something that has been lacking in international diplomatic efforts for decades. This is how peace will be built.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Fertility Treatment in Israel

A unique law in Israel permits fertility treatment to be covered by the health funds until a couple have 2 children. Some have criticized this policy, claiming that the doctors and medical professionals are not under pressure to succeed in the first attempts.

In countries where the couple pay out of the pocket the consumer,  the couple, will place great pressure on the doctor to achieve a pregnancy as quickly as possible.

However, if the couple are not paying the bill the doctors can try numerous times.  
However at the recent Annual Meeting of the Israeli Fertility Society statistics were presented that show over 30% pregnancy rates of women under 35 which is comparable to statistics in developed countries with the same population.

The fact that treatment is almost free in the State of Israel does mean that Israeli doctors have developed a vast experience of dealing with difficult cases, with older women who are undergoing fertility treatment  and couples who have had many treatments and eventually become pregnant.

In other countries these people would never have the opportunity to undergo treatment and have children. They would not have the access to treatment, they would not have the resources and the doctors would never have seen that even these difficult and complex cases can end in pregnancy and children being born.

Israel deserves its place as a world leader in the area of fertility research and treatment. Israel is very well represented at international conferences, and world renowned researchers and medical professionals come to Israel to see for themselves and learn from our unique situation.

One example comes to mind; medical clowns are a big thing in Israel. Not only children, but adults as well recover quicker after having an interaction with these medical clowns who are mostly volunteers. Someone had the good idea that maybe they should bring medical clowns into the recovery room after fertility treatment. When they did so the pregnancy rates increased.  This data was presented at a large international meeting and while the other attendees were initially were sceptical whether this really worked, they were very impressed with the results. Another Israeli success. 

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

The East, The Far East And Nothing But The East

Mark Feldman   April 22, 2017
Both India and China have become the darlings of the Israel government, its economy and the tourism industry.
 It was back in 2001 that a leading economist at Goldman Sachs coined the acronym BRIC, for Brazil, Russia, India and China as the largest emerging markets economies. His assertion was that he expected them to grow faster than the developed countries and to play an increasingly important role in the world – and so they have.

Fast forward to 2017. Both India and China have become the darlings of the Israel government, its economy and the tourism industry. Trade and travel between India and China with Israel have grown beyond the wildest expectations of even the sagest of government clerks. Just recently the largest defense contract in Israel’s history includes a $1.6 billion contract from the Indian army for an advanced missile system. IAI, the Israel Aerospace Industries, made headlines when it announced that it had been awarded defense contracts in India totaling almost $2 billion. Their Israeli travel agency was salivating as it started calculating the increase in air travel between the two countries to handle the new business deal.

Business travelers to the Indian subcontinent are focusing on the burgeoning reputation of India’s high-tech partners. India has become one of Israel’s largest trading partners, forging joint ventures that are successfully competing in the tough international marketplace. Trade and cooperation between the countries now center primarily on security-related deals and assistance in areas such as water desalination and agriculture.

India’s independence as a sovereign state in Aug 1947 predates Israel’s own independence by a mere nine months with both countries declaring their freedom from the United Kingdom. Nevertheless, it took the newly independent countries until 1992 for them to establish full diplomatic relations.

Relations between New Delhi and Jerusalem were not always warm. For most of its history, India was a leader in the non-aligned movement, whose raison d’etre was to develop close relations with the Arab world and the Soviet Union. India’s large Muslim population, well over 100 million, was another major obstacle to a thaw in the relationship with Israel.

What’s changed is not only the price of oil, removing the threat of Arab boycotts from the political radar screen, but the security and defense required by India, which Israel was able and only too eager to provide. Did it help that thousands of Indians travelled to Israel for special courses and training in agricultural technology? Of course! Was the case for a stronger relationship made when Israel sent humanitarian relief to India following a devastating earthquake in 2001? Indubitably! One would assert, though, that supplying weapons and training soldiers to aid India in skirmishes and near wars with Pakistan is the true reason for the warmer relationship.

According to data from the Israeli Airports Authorities, the number of passengers flying directly between the two countries approached 160,000 in 2016. The majority, more than 100,000, were Israelis traveling to India, while India managed to send approximately 50,000 tourists to Israel. In 2013 the Israel Tourism Ministry opted to open a bureau in Israel and began bringing over India Travel Agents to learn about the Holy Land. On an encouraging note, those Indians that come to Israel tend to spend more on average than other tourists.

India provides foreigners with a lot of freedom, so long as they respect basic cultural tenets, and even if these are flouted, Indians are usually rather laid back, clement and tolerant. Traveling in India is economical, meaning that using the stipend Israelis obtain upon completion of their military service, or after saving some money; they can travel for a long time, as opposed to other economies where they could only afford a shorter sojourn.

While India is considered an exotic destination because the landscape and culture differ so much from Israel, it is easy to travel there with the abundance and availability of public transportation, accommodation, etc., and there is almost always someone around who speaks English – or even Hebrew in the more touristy areas.

The government-owned flagship carrier of India, the third-largest airline in terms of passengers, is coming to Ben Gurion Airport. Forget about Mumbai – Air India wants you to fly to New Delhi, and with three weekly flights commencing in the spring, has both the wherewithal and wisdom to crack wide open the skies over Tel Aviv. Details are still sketchy; flights have yet to be preloaded in the Global Distribution Systems used by travel agents around the world and the marketing push has yet to be presented, but Air India in basic cricket parlance will be an all-rounder.

CHINA AND Israel’s tourism and trade relationship is better known. Cathay Pacific flies nonstop from Hong Kong into Tel Aviv, while Hainan Airlines challenges El Al on the Beijing leg. Chinese companies have relentlessly been buying large Israel conglomerates. Never in Israel’s existence has the East been so attractive.

The Israeli government – keen to tap a growing Asian middle class armed with passports and eager to explore the globe – has thrown its weight behind a number of creative efforts to promote Israel as a destination for tourists from India and China. Incoming tour operators and the Tourism Ministry tout Israel to Indian and Chinese tourists as a travel experience that mixes history, culture and a contemporary lifestyle. Aiming for 50,000 Indians and 50,000 Chinese in 2017 is the goal. While still a drop in the bucket in terms of potential – about 20 million Indians and 120 million Chinese traveled overseas last year – the number of visitors continues to grow.

The other advantage of having more carriers flying Indian and Chinese tourists into Israel is that the prices from Israel continue to drop. It takes eight hours to fly directly to Mumbai; nine and a half hours from Tel Aviv bring you into Beijing. Yet flying far greater distances, specifically to New York has historically seen far lower fares. That should begin to change with the increased competition, which will generate more interest among Israelis of all ages to consider India and China as a traveling destination.

Professing that more Israelis will travel this spring and summer to Europe and the United States is a no-brainer. They will. But the Far East beckons like some great unknown. As Mahatma Gandhi, the leader of Indian’s Independence movement said: “Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.”

Friday, May 12, 2017

Ties with Ancient Greeks Prove Historical Legitimacy of the Jewish State

by Maria Polizoidou  May 8, 2017
·       If the UN honestly wants peace, then it must accept that the modern Jewish state is the tugboat that will pull the whole Middle East into the 21st century. Rejecting the historic Jewish legitimacy in Jerusalem, is rejecting the quintessence of peace.
·       In historical terms, the modern Jewish state has greater historical legitimacy than most modern European states – and far more than at least the five Middle Eastern states artificially created out of the 1916 Sykes-Picot agreement: the newborn countries of Greater Syria, Lebanon, Jordan and Iraq. In Europe, what we now call Germany and France only appeared in the historical space of the Western world in the 3rd Century AD.
·       Or could it be that secretly the United Nations does not want "peace" but instead the obliteration of Israel and its replacement by another Islamist state?
You can run away from history, but you cannot hide from it. History does not care about your religious beliefs, your political beliefs or your political correctness. History records facts, regardless of how you feel about them.

UNESCO's latest resolution about Jerusalem, which denies the Jews' and Israel's legacy over its historical capital, Jerusalem, is yet another proof of the UN's corrupt decline. It not only offends the historical truth and archeology of the Jewish people. It also offends the Greek people, and all Christians, who for thousands of years have also had ties with the area and the nation of Jews. As it also offends the foundations of Greek Orthodox Christianity, the Greek government -- to its honor -- voted against this hallucinatory UNESCO resolution.

Here are more facts: The King of Sparta, Arius I, who lived between 309-267 B.C., sent a letter to Onias the First, the High Priest of the Jewish Temple in Jerusalem:

"The King of Sparta, Arius, sends greetings to the High Priest, Onias. It is written about the relations between the Jews and the Spartans that they are brotherly nations and that they originate from Abraham. Now that we have discovered this, tell us how your prosperity is. We write to you that your possessions and your animals are ours and our own possessions and animals are yours".
The king of Sparta, Arius, not only accepted that the relationship between Spartans and Jews are much older than his reign, but also that there was (as we would call it today) a federation.
King Arius further established the cultural privilege and right between Greeks and Jews to be called brothers.

What the King Arius was really saying here is that two states with different religions -- without common economic interests, without a common border and without even the same geographical area -- can interact in a political and cultural way. It is an important lesson for modern politicians. It also shows that for millennia, the cultural and historical depth of the Jewish people is undeniable, as well as the foundation for friendship among the Middle East nations. The problem of interacting with other people, as we can even see throughout Europe today, is on the Muslim side, not on the other side.

For more on this story read

Monday, May 8, 2017

Will They Ever Learn?

Lacy Macauley is by her own definition a ‘radical activist’ based out of Washington, D.C.

She was one of the organizers behind #DisruptJ20, the action meant to disrupt President Donald Trump’s inauguration as well as disrupt the various balls and events attendant to the inauguration. She’s basically been involved in every leftist protest action for years, from G20 and Occupy actions to protests against pipelines.

Macauley went to Turkey last year because the G20 was there. Leftists traditionally protest and have riots at the location of the G20. She also was interested in learning more about a Muslim country and working with refugees. There, according to her blogpost, she met a Muslim man.

He offered a ready smile, engaging kindness, and intelligent conversation. He said all the right things to convince me that he cared about women’s rights and activism. In February, I decided to return to Turkey with the promise of love driving me forward. I couldn’t have known things would turn sour.

Then came our first fight. I had wanted to interview a local woman for an article on Syrian refugees. He did not approve. He knew the woman and did not like her, so he strictly forbade me from speaking with her. After I questioned his rationale, he yelled and stormed out of the room to go smoke a cigarette. I just stood in the middle of the room not knowing what to do. Of course, as a Western woman, no one had ever forbidden me from speaking with anyone else.

She found out strangely enough that not every man or society has the same openness and respect for women that she took for granted in the United States. She found out that he expected her to be dependent on him, to be constantly by his side and that he controlled her every move.

It got worse.

In the following weeks, I was violently pushed, blocked from leaving freely, and repeatedly told not to speak. If I spoke anyway, anger erupted. I endured threats that I would be burnt with cigarettes, flinching as he “faked” with his lit cigarette. I had to duck to avoid having sharp objects thrown at my face. I had water angrily poured over my head.
Unwanted sex? Rape? All the time. He did not stop to determine whether I consented to sex.

He then tried to cut off her connection with the outside world, shutting off her wifi and criticizing her use of social media. He also made her unfriend another Turkish man on Facebook and tried to have her cut off others.

Her experience in the society didn’t get better. She claimed she was arrested for just going to a speech because she was an activist.

Two days later, however, I was jailed by Turkish police for several hours when I tried to simply enter a large public speech in Antalya by the president of Turkey. (They make a habit of jailing reporters and activists, and I didn’t look like I fit their norms. I wrote about this experience with the Turkish police here.) I had an “out of the frying pan and into the fire” sensation.

So did that experience give her any enlightenment as to how wonderful America is? What a real patriarchy is actually like? Or the ways in which Islamic society allows and normalizes such oppression against women?

In a word, no.

She didn’t initially speak of her experiences, she said, because she “did not want to feed into the narrative of Muslim men being aggressive.”

So the truth was less important than anything that might call into question her political agenda points.

She still came back and organized #DisruptJ20. She came out with Antifa (anti Israel organization) just this past weekend in Kentucky.

Despite everything that had showed her thoughts to be misplaced and in error, she still can’t ditch the radicalism.

What a sad way to waste one’s life

Friday, May 5, 2017

The Palestine National Fund: Encouraging Terror at the Expense of Palestinians

This article reveals the scale of the budget, the large funds paid by the Palestine National Fund (PNF) to terrorists, and its promotion of terrorism against the state of Israel.
Since its establishment in 1964, with the purpose of serving as a body to manage Palestinian funds, the Palestine National Fund (PNF) has changed its objective. In recent years, a large part of the PNF’s budget has been diverted to support terrorists, at the expense of promoting the welfare of the Palestinian population. Due to this, on the 16th of March 2017 Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman designated the Palestine National Fund as a terrorist organization. Following the designation, Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories Major General Yoav (Poly) Mordechai instructed to revoke the VIP Permit of Ramzi Khouri, CEO of the PNF.
Commission for Prisoners Affairs: Same Body, New Name
The Palestine National Fund, whose sources of income and expenses are partially known, has become the primary funder of the Commission for Prisoners’ Affairs since 2014. The PNF began its funding of the commission after criticism was raised to the Palestinian Authority (PA) by key players in the international community regarding the activity of the Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs. The international community's claim was that the Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs should not allocate money from its budget to fund the welfare of terror operatives, as a reward for carrying out security offenses and at the expense of all Palestinians.  
Following pressure from the international community, the Palestinian Authority decided to subordinate the Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs to the PNF and changed its name to the Commission for Prisoners’ Affairs. It is clear that this new commission is similar to the ministry—in terms of managers, offices and even contains a nearly identical budget that stands at close to half a billion NIS per year. This new commission is a similar replica of the ministry, but with a new name.
The purpose of differentiating between the Palestinian Authority and the body financing the prisoners is to improve the PA’s image and make it difficult for Israel and the international community to uncover the source of aid money to terrorists in prison. However, their attempt failed and the plot was revealed. Since 2014, the Palestine National Fund has transferred payments to Palestinian terrorists, which often occurs even after these terrorists receive funds from the terror organizations with whom they affiliate. Additionally, the commission transfers monthly payments to released prisoners, amongst those are murderers and suicide attack planners. In fact, released Palestinian terrorists who currently live in Judea and Samaria receive a salary for their involvement in terror activities. Imagine what could be accomplished if instead of paying terrorists, the funds went to education, infrastructure and cushioning the cost of living for Palestinians.
12,000 NIS a Month for Terrorists in Prison
For those who wonder how much a prisoner receives—one who has been convicted of involvement in terror and now sits in an Israeli prison—the following figures will clarify the absurdity. A prisoner who is sent to prison for a term of up to two years will receive 1,400 NIS from the Palestine National Fund each month, and the amount increases in accordance with the prison term. A murderer of an Israeli citizen or one who plans a suicide bombing who has been sentenced to more than 20 years in prison, earns 12,000 NIS a month.
The large budget allocated to prisoners is even more absurd when it comes to the payments for released prisoners, especially when this money should be directed to civilian projects for the welfare of the Palestinian population. Released prisoners who have served five years in an Israeli prison, after being involved in terrorist activities, receives a monthly salary of 2,000 NIS from the PNF. A prisoner serving over 30 years in prison will receive 11,000 NIS per month from the PNF, an amount much greater than the average Palestinian salary. In addition, released terrorists who committed acts of terror against innocent Israeli citizens receive a one-time payment when they are released from prison. This payment can reach up to 25,000 dollars.
Furthermore, these payments can even be doubled. Prisoners who affiliate with terror organizations, such as Hamas and the Islamic Jihad, receive large sums of money from both the PNF and their affiliated organization. On the one hand, the Palestinian Authority uses their security forces to stop Hamas activists and prevent terror attacks. On the other hand, the PNF transfers money which encourages more terror attacks. For example, Ibrahim Ghaneemat, a Hamas operative directly involved with the murder of many Israeli civilians, received more than one million NIS since his arrest in 2005, of which over 700,000 NIS came from the Palestine National Fund, while the rest came from Hamas.
Payments to Encourage Terror
The payments transferred to terrorists in prison and to released terrorists encourage other Palestinians to join this cycle of violence and terrorism. Instead of investing money in educating children on peace and improving the standard of living for law-abiding Palestinians, the PNF exploits its budget to fund and celebrate criminals. This encourages more criminals to join the circle of violence, which cannot end if it continues as such.
It is enough to read the testimonies of Palestinians arrested for the second time by Israel to illustrate the fact that the Palestine National Fund—the PLO’s body—supports terrorist activity. These Palestinians continued to engage in terrorist activity in order to return to prison and complete the five-year minimum quota and thus, receive a fixed salary for life as a released prisoner. These attempts to fulfill a minimum quota have become an ugly phenomenon that must be condemned.
In addition, there is clear evidence that senior members of the PNF attempted to conceal from the world their money transfers to prisoners involved in terrorism against Israel. However, members of the international community quickly picked up and publicized this scheme. United States Chairman of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs Ed Royce, said in November 2016 that “this ‘pay-to-slay scheme' must stop," adding that the most brutal terrorists enjoy the highest salaries.

The designation of the Palestine National Fund as a terrorist organization is an important step in making it clear, to Palestinians and to the entire world, that Israel will not remain silent about the funding of terrorists, whether imprisoned or released. The large amounts of money transferred by the PNF to these terrorists every month—who in many instances receive an additional salary from their own terror organizations—prove that the PNF encourages more terrorism against the State of Israel. These funds could be allocated to development and infrastructure for Palestinians, but the PNF chooses instead to assist those responsible for destruction and terror.

The Truth About the Conditions of Security Prisoners in Israel

The current hunger strike by security prisoners is attempting to paint the conditions of prisons in Israel negatively. In reality, the conditions in Israeli prisons are better than those in the Palestinian Authority, Gaza, in the Arab World and even in the West. 

Here is the truth about the conditions of Palestinian prisoners in Israeli prisons.

Palestinian security prisoners in Israel regularly attempt, and especially now during their current hunger strike, to present Israeli prisons in a negative way. The prisoners participating in the strike, terrorists responsible for the deaths of many Israelis, complain of the "harsh conditions" in Israeli jails and are demanding "critical" benefits such as public telephones in prison wings and the ability to receive college education. Anyone who knows the Israeli prison system knows that the conditions of security prisoners meet a very high standard. Prisoners in the Palestinian Authority, Gaza, and even in the Western world, can only dream of the benefits that prisoners in Israel receive.
So, what are the conditions for security prisoners in Israel?
As of March 2017, there are 6,100 security prisoners in Israeli jails, most of them between the ages of 18 and 25. According to the definition, security prisoners in Israel are those convicted of an offense that involves harm to the State of Israel or a nationalistic motive. Over 2,000 are serving their sentences for being directly responsible for the murder of Israelis. Security prisoners are spread throughout different prisons in Israel. Ketziot Prison houses the largest amount of security prisoners, over 1,700, while Ofer Prison being the second housing over 1,000 inmates.  
Security prisoners in Israel are entitled to a number of  basic rights, as well as receiving additional benefits. Under the basic conditions, inmates are entitled to meet with an attorney (within a professional framework), receive medical treatment, religious rights, basic living conditions (such as hot water, showers and sanitation), proper ventilation and electric infrastructure. They also receive regular visits from the Red Cross and education as well. 
Apart from these basic conditions, security prisoners in Israel's are entitled to receive newspapers, send and receive letters and read and keep their own books. Prisoners are even permitted to buy goods from the prison's canteen, which is run by the inmates themselves. If that is not enough,relatives of prisoners can deposit money for them at the post office's bank. As a part of the living conditions, prisoners receive family visitations, television watching hours and even electrical appliances, such as kettles and mosquito killers. On top of it all, many security prisoners receive monthly salaries, which can sometimes reach up to 12,000 NIS a month, from the Palestinian Authority for carrying out their murderous crimes. COGAT recently posted a report describing the funding by the Palestinian National Fund to Palestinian terrorists in Israeli jails. This report can be found here.   
Using this information, it can be determined that it is better to be behind Israeli prison bars than it is to be in the streets of Hamas controlled Gaza. Israel grants all these rights to prisoners who, more often than not, attempt even from their prison cells to carry out attacks against Israel's citizens.
The conditions in Israeli prisons stand out as exceptionally good when contrasted to Hamas' prisons in Gaza, where inmates are regularly executed without trial. Further, according to media reports, Hamas keeps secret prisons, where they hold and torture political opponents. The UN, Foreign Governments, the EU and International Human Rights Organizations have condemned on many occasions the executions by Hamas and have called for an end to the death penalty in the Gaza Strip.
The conditions in Israeli prisons stand out even when being compared to the poor conditions of the Palestinian Authority's prisons. It was reported in the past years that many inmates are tortured in the PA's prisons. Electric shocks, club beatings, psychological torture, sleep deprivation and even torturing prisoners wives are all part of the arsenal. In an interview with the Palestinian newspaper, a Hamas member who was an inmate in both Israeli and PA jails described the situation in Palestinian prisons as "brutal and barbaric, especially in comparison to Israel."

Upon close examination, the facts are clear- the conditions in Israeli prisons are significantly better than conditions in prisons in the region and even than many Western countries. The Israeli Prison Services cares, protects the rights, and respects prisoners in Israeli jails. But, apparently, for those security prisoners on strike, it is not enough.