Here are articles, features and multimedia presentations prepared over the past several years focusing on the Israeli - Palestinian conflict and day-to-day affairs.

Included are breaking hard-news items, magazine feature stories and in-depth first-hand accounts covering people, places and current events issues on the local and regional scene. 

The material is regularly updated.

Hizbullah: Striking Out On Its Own? A|ME interview & background, 21 January, 2004: Hizbullah's deadly attack on an Israel Defense Forces bulldozer crew on the Lebanese border this week, in which an IDF soldier was killed, may have been a signal both to Israel and Syria that the militant Shiite group feels it can operate with relative autonomy from Syrian dictates.

Angling For The Security Market - A tense SWAT team, masked and clad in body-armor cautiously sidles up to a decrepit urban warehouse in the dead of night, as terrorists holed-up inside guard hostages. But until the assault team knows exactly where the gunmen are hiding the captives, they can't risk casualties or drawing return fire...

Magen David Adom 'joins the ranks' of the international rescue service community

Red Cross officials from around the world gathered in Israel last week for a three-day disaster management workshop hosted by Magen David Adom, which marked an unofficial welcoming of the Israeli rescue service into the brotherhood of the International Red Cross.
Despite being officially left out in the cold by the International Red Cross Movement - which has not allowed MDA's Star of David emblem to join the Cross and Red Crescent - on the ground MDA has been incredibly influential in the organization.

Maryland Governor Visits Israel for Homeland Security Tips
By Dave Bender
CNSNews.com Correspondent
November 06, 2003
(CNSNews.com) - As governor of a state bordering the nation's capital at a time when local political leaders must try to guard their citizens against international terrorist groups, Maryland Republican Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. is looking abroad for advice.

Ehrlich is in Israel, along with a 30-member delegation of business and academic leaders from the state, to get a better idea of how the Israelis deal with security threats and the results of terror attacks.

"Israel, being under permanent threat, obviously is state-of-the-art with respect to not only security issues, but also issues relating to triage, issues relating to mass-casualty situations - typically situations that we have not even had to think about in the United States of America - but do now, post-9/11," Ehrlich said, referring to planned meetings with Israeli officials about "best practices in disaster relief."

Keeping things in perspective
By Dave Bender   August 17, 2003

"Yoni Shapira is a big guy who likes little things; 1:25 scale little things, to be exact. The 50-year-old native Israeli is the creative visionary behind Israel's newest and most popular tourist attraction - Mini Israel - a 15-acre theme park boasting eight acres of exact miniature replicas of over 300 of the country's most famous sites and cities."


(January 14) - Days of Mashiach by Tzvi Fishman. Shorashim. 516 pages. The Jerusalem Post Dave Bender Days of Mashiach, could have been subtitled "Stories for the Frum at Heart." It is the perfect read for a cold winter's night if you happen to be on a windswept hilltop settlement. The books is a compilation of 12 stories centering on redemption - personal and national. Tzvi Fishman's stories are mostly about life in Israel as it is - and about what life might be like after a national upheaval heralding the arrival of the Messiah.

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Recollections from the Oslo War


By Dave Bender


"Shayna, Pria, and Shmaya, eight-and-a-half year-old triplets on the tail end of summer vacation, strolled past the Sbarro pizzeria in downtown Jerusalem shortly before a Palestinian suicide bomber walked into the restaurant, packed with noontime diners. Pressing a concealed button on a 10-kilogram charge, the terrorist slaughtered 15 Israelis and tourists and wounded over 130 in a devastating attack.


"The children, together with their mother and her infant twins were on a bus making their way home as scores of local and international correspondents rushed downtown in the wake of the blast that ripped through the heart of Jerusalem just after 2 PM on a harrowing dog-day afternoon."

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New Afghan mission for US: Divorce agreement for Israeli

The Jerusalem Post

"A Beersheba resident has a special request for US forces attacking Kabul, Afghanistan: Convince her husband to divorce her.

"Yitzhak Levi, in his 70s, is one of two Jews remaining in the ancient community. His wife Chana, 50, lives in Beersheba and wants out, reports the Yediot Ahronot Hebrew daily.

"According to Jewish Law, the two can only divorce if her husband agrees to the process.

"Yitzhak is the caretaker at Kabul's sole synagogue, and resides in the building. Next door to the synagogue lives Zebulon Simantov, the other Jew remaining in Afghanistan.

"And true to the cliche, the two reportedly do not get along. However, there is only one synagogue."

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We Don't Promise You A Rose Garden / A new online discussion board gives the lowdown on the possible perils and pitfalls of moving to the Holy Land. Mike Rosenberg, Director-General of the Jewish Agency's Immigration and Absorption Department has big hopes for the "Aliyah Forum Boards," a recently-added feature on the organization's Internet portal, that's slowly but surely gaining more and more attention in immigrant circles. The site, located at www.jafi.org.il/forum, offers a useful way to allay "one of the big factors in Aliyah -- the uncertainty," says Rosenberg, adding, "We need a way of building confidence -- one way of building confidence is getting questions answered."

An Israeli journalist prepares to fight / David Bender / 11 - 9 - 2003/ Among the thousands of reservists regularly called up to serve in Israel's army was one journalist, musician, and writer. David Bender was more than willing to heed the call of his troubled nation. In this poignant and revealing account, he offers a glimpse of the daily life of an Israeli soldier.

A Soldier's Story


"Soaked to the skin despite a two-piece rain slicker, I try to pilot my open, windshield-less jeep through the downpour, stiff winds, and lowering clouds. With helmet and oversized driving goggles, I feel like Snoopy taking on the Red Baron - minus the doghouse.

"A recent call-up notice from my army unit once again invited me to join up with brothers - in - arms for exercises somewhere among the dramatic wadis in the sprawling southern Negev Desert.

"I was asked to drop everything I was doing at the moment, pick up an oily rifle and a heavy tan duffle bag, and spend some quality time practicing for the big one."

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(12:00) Second Jerusalem car-bomb wounds dozens By The Jerusalem Post Internet Staff May, 27 2001 "A car bomb that blew up adjacent to the capital's Russian Compound at 09:00 this morning wounded at least 31 people as of this posting. Passers-by wounded in the blast are suffering from trauma and minor shrapnel wounds, according to Magen David Adom. They were admitted to four Jerusalem hospitals: Bikur Holim downtown, Sha'are Tzedek Hospital, Hadassah University Hospital at Ein Kerem and at Mount Scopus. The blazing remains of the demolished car, parked across the street from the downtown Jerusalem police headquarters, were doused by firefighters. Some six mortar shells hidden in the vehicle were scattered like buckshot from the force of the blast."

Ask for Death

Palestinian Media Watch video
(editing and narration)


"Ask for death" is the message that the Palestinian Authority [PA] has been conveying to its children since the start of violence in October 2000. In June 2002, two articulate 11-year-old girls were interviewed in the studio of official Palestinian Authority TV. Among other topics, they spoke of their personal yearning to achieve death through Shahada Death for Allah and of a similar desire they said exists in "every Palestinian child." It is striking that their desire for death was expressed as a personal goal, not related to the conflict with Israel. Having been convinced that dying for Allah is preferable to life, their goal in living is not to experience a good life, but to achieve the proper death Shahada.To view the 20-minute film on Windows Media Player, click here: 

Click here to view the 20-minute video presentation:

When 'Mean Streets' met the Western Wall -or- Harvey Keitel; The man, the movies, the hupa


By Dave Bender


"It was a standoff Sunday night between Pulp Fiction and the all-too-real cobblestones of the Western Wall Plaza as Harvey Keitel and his new bride Dafna Kessler, 40, ran headlong into a very insistent claque of paparazzi in Jerusalem.


"As Keitel stamped on an aluminum foil-wrapped glass at the conclusion of the ceremony, the muezzins in the Old City, calling the Muslim to prayer, began wailing in eerie coincidence.


"Unbeknownst to those at the event, and even more symbolic, the US-led attack on Afghanistan had also begun at the same moment, with Tomahawk cruise missiles slamming into targets in Kabul and Kandahar as Keitel slammed his foot down on the fragile glass."



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(09:25) Several wounded in Jerusalem car bomb blast A car bomb blew up in the Talpiot neighborhood in southern Jerusalem shortly after 09:00, with one person sustaining minor shrapnel wounds from shards of glass in the attack.

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Hamas funeral clash heard on Jerusalem Post Radio JERUSALEM (August 24) - Hamas spokesman Abdel Aziz Rantisi was caught up in a violent Gaza Strip funeral just after 2 p.m. yesterday, and Jerusalem Post Radio recorded the entire incident via his cellphone. Rantisi was on the road with several others in Gaza when JPost Radio's Dave Bender called him for a prearranged interview on his car telephone. However, Rantisi was attending a funeral, thought to be that of Bilal Ghoul, son of Adnan al-Ghoul, one of Hamas's top bomb and mortar makers in Gaza. He declined to conduct the interview because he couldn't hear anything. However, Rantisi forgot to hang up his telephone. Over the next 10 minutes, JPost Radio recorded Rantisi's hands-free phone broadcasting a vivid exchange of gunfire and frantic shouts in Arabic.

This site is a work in progress. I welcome comments, kudos and even critique as things get sorted out: triplets@bezeqint.net. Thanks, Dave