IAM's investigative report, 16/12/07
By Lee Kaplan, www.Israel-academia-monitor.com
Oren Yiftachel , Orli Fridman and Norma Musih are three Israeli academics who serve as examples of how Israel’s universities can produce the most deceptive of anti-Israel academics who would seek the dismantling of the Jewish state. These three are part of “the team” that helps make up the Institute for Comparative Conflict Studies (IFCCS).
What is the IFCCS?
On the surface, the IFCCS sounds like an educational organization designed by academics to mitigate war and peacefully resolve disputes between parties in conflict. A verbose description of the “Institute” states, it “ is a new initiative of a group of scholars and activists who came together to explore various forms of transformative education. Building on critical theories of social analysis, the Institute aims to become a space in which people can engage the dynamics of conflict in a comparative framework. While most scholars tend to exceptionalize the conflicts they study, our aim is to work within a comparative framework that highlights broader dynamics of societies in conflict. To this end, our programs are focused on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and on the conflicts in the successor states of the former Yugoslavia. The members of our team bring both a personal and professional commitment to these conflicts, making the Institute a new venue to explore issues of power, collective action, and individual agency” (sic).
Translated, the above really says the IFCCS is a consortium of Israeli and Arab scholars and activists who want people to think they are working in peace to resolve a conflict between the Palestinians and Israelis, but doing so by alluding to the successes of the Muslims in Kosovo against the Serbs, so they can draw parallels to help dismantle Israel to create a Muslim dominated Palestine and perhaps draw in international military intervention to do so.
Kosovo was in fact an enormous success in the worldwide jihad and the future Islamization of Europe. Through manipulations of media, and tales of genocide against Muslims that ultimately proved to be fabricated, militant Islamists were able to successfully break away a substantial part of Christian Serbia to create a new Islamic state at the entrance to Europe. Today, Kosovo exists as a country with an Islamic majority, but the chief exports are drugs and the slave trade. Kosovo could not have existed without NATO’s military support against the Serbs who were accused of genocide, but were actually victims of Muslim atrocities. But the narrative still persists of Muslims persecuted and massacred by Serbian forces despite refutations even supplied by communist-inspired groups. Also little known, is the part Saudi funding and foreign intrigue played in the conflict; the Saudis provided mercenaries who fought against Serbian forces in the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) and paid for a good part of the war. If one reads between the lines, the IFCCS has as its purpose the goal of linking the success in Kosovo to the necessary outcome of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Similar propaganda techniques can be applied in portraying Israel as victimizer of the Arabs and possibly even inspire calling in NATO troops.
In order to achieve this process in the IFCCS, some Israeli academics were hired and will be used to lend credibility to the attempt.
Israeli academics are in wide use by anti-Israel and anti-American Islamic groups funded by Saudi, UAE and other Arab oil money in the current worldwide jihad. After all, the theory goes, if an Israeli with a PhD from Israel or who teaches in the American University system supports the eradication of a Jewish state in the Middle East for an Arab dominated one, enough of the Jewish Diaspora might fall in line to support the same goals, since such academics must be really, really smart. Middle East Studies departments in the United States, frequently funded by the Gulf Sheiks, particularly the Saudis and UAE, do employ a good number of Jewish professors—as long as they lecture against Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish state. That funding translates into lucrative jobs for Israeli academics who will be anti-Israel under the guise of scholasticism.
Oren Yiftachel, one of the IFCCS Israeli academics is a perfect example.
Few people who rely on mainstream media know that Yiftachel, a professor of Geography at Ben Gurion University of the Negev, and who earned his PhD through a combined program at the University of Perth in Australia and the Technion in Haifa
with a degree in urban planning, was the perfect such Israeli academic to be hired previously by the Center for Middle East Studies (CMES) at UC Berkeley that was set up by Saudi Prince Bandar.
The CMES at UC Berkeley had a reputation for being stridently anti-Israel and even anti-Semitic and anti-US in its teachings, with one Arab professor from there even calling for an intifada in America. One wealthy Jewish donor to the University disgusted by all the anti-Israel and anti-Jewish rhetoric, the Helen Diller Foundation, donated five million dollars to set up a Jewish Studies department within the CMES. The Arab head of the department gladly took the five million dollars, then hired every anti-Zionist Israeli academic he could find with the money. Oren Yiftachel was one of them.
While a visiting professor at UC Berkeley, Yiftachel, who was one of the supporters of the Geneva Accords set up in defiance of the Israeli foreign ministry, and made it a point to speak at symposiums on campus for Jewish students in Hillel that ultimately suggested compromises by Israel on the nation’s security while getting nothing in return from the Arabs. His courses that are supposed to be in urban planning actually blame Israel for the Israel-Palestinian conflict in sophistic terms. His lectures are laced with the verbiage of the Arab irredentist’ movement with words such as “resistance,” and speak of an “ethnocracy” by the Jews in Israel. In other words, this Urban Planning Professor uses his academic field as a bully pulpit to blame Israel for the attacks against it by the Arabs. He claims his courses are for purposes of reconciliation, but somehow he has nothing to say about the ethnocentrism of the Arabs in the region who he continually portrays as the victims of what he calls “Judaization.” If one were to disregard the entire Middle East’s attempts to deny the Jews of Israel their own small plot of land as not also being “ethnocentrism” of another sort, and only regard Jewish self-determination as such, then Yiftachel is the man. Amusingly enough, Yiftachel also suggests in his lectures that he speaks against repression of Mizrahim, or Jews from Arab lands, by the Ashkenazim or European Jews, while conveniently ignoring it is the Mizrahi Jewish community in Israel that is the most conservative in dealing with Arab attempts to wipe out the Jewish state, those Jews having actually lived in Arab dominated countries. It is in fact, the European Jewry class in Israel that produces the majority of communists and other acolytes weaned on Marxist theory (A European adventure) and who give a voice to the likes of Yiftachel.
Orli Fridman, listed as another “team” member at IFCCS, leaves no question about her opposition to Israel’s existence by her support of Women in Black and other radical leftist, pro-communist and pro-Palestinian organizations in Israel such as Machsom Watch. An employee at the Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution at George Mason University, Virginia, she spends part of her time as counselor at the Seeds for Peace Camp run in part by the US State Department. Adam Shapiro and Huwaida Arraf, two co-founders of the International Solidarity Movement also worked for the same entity. A good description of Seeds for Peace is as a place where confused, liberal Jews get together with Arabs not at all unsure about their claims of victimization by Israel and the need for an Arab-dominated Palestine. By the end of a camp session in the USA or Jerusalem, the Arabs have a fresh new supply of "useful idiot" Jews ready to do stupid things just like their Jewish counselors do. For example, Orli Fridman signed a petition demanding that Israel demolish its security fence even though it has dramatically lowered the number of Arab suicide bombers and terrorists who murder Jews and other Israeli citizens. Regarding Kosovo, she insists the faked atrocities against Muslims were real and condemns Serbian disinterest in them probably due to real atrocities the Serbs received from the Muslims fighting for Kosovo.
Although born in Israel, Fridman received her PhD from George Mason University, the recent host of the national campaign of the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation with a satellite campus in one of the Gulf Sheikdoms. Fridman holds a BA in Hebrew and Middle East Studies from Hebrew University in Jerusalem.
On the Board of Driectors of IFCCS is Norma Musih, is a PhD candidate in Critique and Cultural Studies at Bar-Ilan University who is an administrative director at Zochrot, “an Israeli NGO that works to raise awareness of the Nakba, the Palestinian catasrophe of 1948.” In other words, she heads a non-profit that has the sole responsibility within Israel of convincing everyone, including the Israeli-Arab population that Israel’s creation was nothing less than a catastrophe and that the right of return for the ancestors of Arabs who lived in 1948 Palestine must occur. The fact is that this would flood Israel with five million Arabs and thus dismantle the state is irrelevant. Zochrot is also linked to the International Solidarity Movement.
Each of these Israeli academics has found a niche within the IFCCS to lend credibility to a program that claims to be seeking conflict resolution but in fact is part of the worldwide jihad. Middle East Studies programs in America that brought them to their current positions in IFCCS were in fact funded also by the Saudis just as Albanian Muslims were. The saddest fact is that these “scholars” were able to garner their degrees in part at Israeli universities, in their home country that they seek to have the same fate as the Serbs had in Bosnia.