Stopping incitement is a prerequisite to a peace process

Let’s stop pretending

by Itamar Marcus and Nan Jacques Zilberdik, PALESTINIAN MEDIA WATCH

The Palestinian Authority and its leaders share the blame for the murders of the five Israelis from Itamar on Friday – including two children and an infant – along with the terrorists who committed them. It is the PA and its leaders who have prepared the ground for these murders with the incessant incitement to hatred and the glorification of violence and terror.

In spite of its conciliatory statements in English, the PA continues to use all the structures it controls to demonize Israelis and to promote violence. Terrorists are presented as heroes and role models for Palestinians, teaching that killing Israelis is a way to earn eternal fame.

Just two months ago, PA President Mahmoud Abbas sent a clear message of support for terror when he awarded $2000 to the family of a terrorist who attacked IDF soldiers. Last week, the PA’s official daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida announced a football tournament named after Wafa Idris, the first female Palestinian suicide bomber, and three weeks ago PA TV, which is under the direct control of Abbas’s office, broadcast videos glorifying the terrorist Habash Hanani, who in May 2002 entered Itamar and murdered three Israeli students. Twice the PA named summer camps after the terrorist Dalal Mughrabi, who in 1978 led the most deadly attack in Israel’s history in which 37 civilians were killed in a bus hijacking, both in 2008 and again this past summer.

But the long arm of the PA’s promotion of violence and terror goes even farther, penetrating the realm of culture and music, which has been used so often in recent years in other places in the world to promote peace and tolerance. Last year, PA TV broadcast a number of performances of a band called Alashekeen, including a song anticipating the conquering of Israel through holy war. The song presents all of Israel as “Palestine,” mentioning the Carmel region near Haifa, and the cities of Lod, Ramle, and Jerusalem as regions to be liberated: “In Ramle we are grenades… the Palestinian revolution awaits [them]… We replaced bracelets with weapons. We attacked the despicable [Zionists]. This invading enemy is on the battlefield. This is the day of consolation of jihad. Pull the trigger. We shall redeem Jerusalem, Nablus and the country.”

More significant than the repeated exposure on PA TV and at cultural events was the fact that Abbas chose to honor the musical group. He issued a presidential decree turning it into an official Palestinian national band.

COMPOUNDING THE PA’s nationalistic hate promotion are its Islamic-based messages. The PA seems to have adopted what was once thought to be only Hamas ideology, that the conflict with Israel is a Ribat – a religious war for Allah to defend Islamic land in which conflict with Israel is uncompromising. Abbas’s appointed minister of religion, Mahmoud Habbash, has taught repeatedly that the conflict with Israel is not territorial but is in accordance with Islamic law: “Allah has preordained for us the Ribat on this blessed land. We are committed to it by Allah’s command. Let no one be mistaken or under the illusion that Ribat is a choice and nothing more. It is a commandment.”

He has also preached that the conflict against Israel – over all of Israel – is cited in the Koran: “The catastrophe, in truth, did not begin in 1948, but began perhaps in 1917 with the cursed [Balfour] Declaration, which gave a promise to those who did not deserve it… Since that date, resolute people, fighters and Ribat fighters have not ceased upon our blessed land… This conflict is explicit in the Koran and our obligation with regard to it is clarified by the Koran.”

In short, the PA, like the Hamas, is telling its people that Islam does not allow for reconciliation with Israel.

WITH CONTINUOUS messages like this coming from the so-called moderate leadership of the PA, is it any wonder that people can go on terror rampages like the one in Itamar this weekend? Palestinians may assume that their leaders and society will honor them if they murder Israelis, that their families will receive payment if they are killed, and that their religion encourages Israel’s disappearance.

Was the terrorist who committed those brutal killings dreaming about a future Palestinian summer camp in his name? Was he imagining Allah granting him everlasting rewards in paradise for fulfilling his command? Did he feel that he was fulfilling his national duty and would receive a financial reward?

And what about the international community which has accepted and naively believed PA leaders’ assurances that incitement had stopped? It was the international community, represented by US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, which stipulated preconditions for the PA to enter into a renewed peace process: “We will only work with a Palestinian Authority government that unambiguously and explicitly accepts the Quartet’s principles: A commitment to non-violence, recognition of Israel, and acceptance of previous agreements and obligations, including the Road Map” (House Appropriations Subcommittee on State, April 23, 2009). The Road Map states that “all official Palestinian institutions end incitement against Israel.”

The international community has completely failed because it never followed up to see if these preconditions had actually been met, but gladly satisfied itself with Abbas’s promises, and continues to fund the PA.

Everyone involved in the peace process is making a tragic mistake by assuming the incitement is just another issue that has to be dealt with, like the issues of water, borders, and refugees. All of those are issues that must be negotiated as part of a peace process. But as long as the Palestinian Authority continues to teach these messages, clearly there is no peace process.

It is incumbent on the international community to inform the Palestinian Authority that a condition for “working” with it, as Clinton stated, is that it erases the messages of hate and replaces them with peace promotion.

And until that time the international community must ostracize and isolate the Palestinian Authority, just as they do Hamas, and stop pretending there is a peace process.

March 14, 2011 | 5 Comments »

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  1. Arafat and Abbas have both said that what they say in English has no bearing on what they say to their people in Arabic and in Writing. The world hates the Jews and we continue to go along with their persecution. Time to wake up and get ourselves the kind of leadership who will lead us out of galus. There is no peace process and there will be no peace process. Anyone who thinks otherwise is a dreamer. There was terror before 1948 and there has been terror since. Those who choose to terrorize Israel should themselves be terrorized. It won’t take much in the way of action to stop it all from happening. Israel just has to show the world that we are in charge rather than acting as sacrificial lambs. When do we rebuild the Temple?

  2. ‘Itamar killings carried out by foreign worker’

    03/14/2011 19:19

    News sites affiliated with PA cast doubt about Israeli claims that Palestinains were behind killings, says IDF arrested Thai worker.

    A number of news Web sites that are affiliated with the Palestinian Authority claimed on Monday that the Itamar killings were committed by a foreign worker who was employed in the settlement.

    PA-controlled media outlets also highlighted the story and continued to cast doubt about Israeli claims that Palestinians were behind the killings.

    The Bethlehem-based news agency Ma’an, which is close to the PA leadership, ran a lead news story that claimed that a Thai worker had been arrested by the IDF on suspicion of killing the five members of the Fogel family on Friday night.

    The agency did not say how it obtained the information. However, it said that shortly after the killings, Israeli security forces arrested all the Thai workers who were inside the settlement.

    Ma’an pointed out that no Palestinian group had claimed responsibility for the attack and that Palestinians were banned from entering settlements.

    Another Palestinian news agency, Qudsnet, claimed that an Asian man who used to work for the Fogel family was behind the killings.

    Quoting a Palestinian family living in the nearby village of Awarta, the agency said that the family members were slaughtered because the father refused to pay the Asian worker his salary, which is estimated at 10,000 Shekels.

    The latest claims came as PA President Mahmoud Abbas, in an interview with Kol Yisrael, condemned the Itamar killings as “despicable, immoral and inhuman.”

    Abbas said that a “human being is not capable of something like that.” He said that had the PA had advance information, “we would have prevented this.”

    Offering to help Israel in the investigation, Abbas rejected accusations of incitement and said he was prepared to be part of an Israeli-American-Palestinian committee to look into the allegations.

  3. As long as the media provides cover for the Pals and Israeli leaders play dumb (as in mute, rather than stupid as Shy Guy suggests), much of the world will continue to blame Israel for the conflict and give the Pals a pass.

    If I am not for myself, who will be for me?

  4. Brutal Murder of Fogel Family is More than Terrorism–It is Barbarism.

    So what are the leftists going to say now? Will they claim the newborn was inciting the terrorists? Maybe the three-year-old was making threats? What sickness does it take for armed men to come into a family’s home in the middle of the night and murder a rabbi, his wife, and three innocent children?

    I will tell you what sickness it takes.

    It takes the sickness of a society that raises their children to hate Jews. It takes the sickness of a society that gives school children books that poisons them to think that murdering a Jew will send them to heaven.

    It takes the sickness of a society where the Prime Minister would suggest his own people were living illegally in their own homes, and a Secretary of Defense that would collaborate with the enemy to destroy Jewish homes.

    It takes the sickness of a society that will listen to anti-Semites dressed in the robes of “Peace Now” rather than supporting their own people who are trying to make a life in the land that G-d has given us.

    May G-d avenge the murder of this family, and may the entire country of Israel rise up at once and put an end to the activities of leftists, anarchists, and terrorists working hand in glove to destroy Israel. May the entire land of Israel raise up to demand that Judea and Samaria be immediately annexed. Don’t let this family suffer in vain. Make this a moment of truth.

    May the Fogel name be preserved on the lips of every Jew, and in the names of cities up and down the length and breadth of Israel.

    May Hashm bring comfort to the entire Jewish nation, and especially to the orphans.


    Why not just come out and say it: there is no “peace process”. Never has been.

    Stupid Jews.

    Hmm, I think you are on to something.