Published in The Kansas City Jewish Chronicle
On Aug. 26, Israel released 199 Jailed Palestinian terrorists as a “goodwill gesture” to Palestinian Authority head Mahmoud Abbas. The list included several prisoners “with blood on their hands” who were involved in the murder of Israelis.In justifying their actions, the Israeli government released a statement saying, “Through this latest confidence-building measure, Israel seeks to intensify its continued dialogue with moderate Palestinian partners who are both committed to diplomacy and opposed to terrorism.”But recent actions and words by President Abbas and the Palestinian Authority only reinforce the fact that Abbas is another Arafat, and the Palestinian Authority is another Hamas. True peace is not possible until a new generation of Palestinians arises that is not brainwashed with hatred and the glorification of terrorism against the Jewish state.
On Aug. 28, just two days after the release of the Palestinian prisoners, Abbas, while on a visit to Beirut, requested and held a public meeting with Samir Kuntar. Kuntar is the notorious terrorist who was recently released by Israel to Hezbollah in return for the bodies of two Israeli soldiers killed in Lebanon. This is after Abbas personally called the Kuntar family to congratulate them on the release, and Abbas’ Fatah party organized celebratory rallies to commemorate the event.Who can forget the tragic and grisly murders committed by Kuntar in April 1979, when he and other PLF terrorists seized Danny Haran, 28, and his 4-year-old daughter from their home in the city of Nahariya in northern Israel. The terrorists moved them to the beachfront, where Kuntar shot Danny in front of his daughter, then drowned him in the sea to ensure he was dead. He then proceeded to smash the 4-year-old’s skull with a rock and crush it with the butt of his rifle. Tragically, Danny Haran’s wife, who had managed to hide in a closet with her 2-year-old daughter, accidently suffocated the infant in an effort not to betray their whereabouts.
On Aug. 31, three days after the Abbas meeting with Kuntar, Israeli Prime Minister Olmert met Abbas in Jerusalem as if nothing horrific just happened, after only reprimanding Abbas for meeting a “killer.” Much worse, during the photo opportunity during the meeting, Olmert publicly stressed to Abbas the urgent need to complete the peace agreement this year.Déjà vu all over
againIt is déjà vu all over again. Israel and the U.S. did not learn anything from their mistakes in negotiating with Arafat. As Prime Ministers Rabin, Peres and Barak — as well as President Clinton — did with Arafat, Israel and the U.S. still prefer to ignore the continued incitement against Israel by the Palestinian leadership and institutions in their obsessive, blind pursuit of a piece of paper they call peace.Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me. There is something morally repulsive in a leader who wishes to honor such a terrorist, but it not surprising if we recall that Abbas was number two to Arafat during Arafat’s 37-year-long campaign of terror against Israel. However, it is surprising when an Israeli and Jewish leader is so desperately willing to give away Israel’s security to such an evil man by contemplating giving him an independent state.When former U.S. negotiator Dennis Ross sought to understand the failure of the Oslo peace process of the 1990s, in which he was an active participant, he zeroed in on the need to change the psyche of the Palestinian people toward acceptance of the Jewish state, which the Palestinian leadership has failed to encourage.
He pointed to the education and indoctrination to hatred and violence that Palestinian children receive at summer camps and in school textbooks, as well as the incitement against Israel by Palestinian institutions, media and leadership. Ross concluded “that no negotiation is likely to succeed if there is one environment at the negotiation table and another on the street.”Incitement, indoctrinationAbbas’ meeting with Kuntar is the only latest in a series of actions and speeches made by Abbas and the PA in 2008 praising terrorists, hate, and violence.In January, Abbas ordered three days of mourning in the West Bank to commemorate the death of George Habash stating, “The death of this historic leader is great loss for the Palestinians cause and for the Palestinian people, for whom he fought for 60 years.” Habash was the mastermind of the murder of 47 travelers in the bombing of a Swissair flight and the murder of 27 people at an Israeli airport.After the brutal murder of eight Israeli students March 6 at the Mercaz HaRav yeshiva in Jerusalem, the official daily newspaper of Abbas’ PA, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, described the murderer as a “martyr” and “a groom” and his funeral as “a wedding celebration.”On Feb.14, official PA television glorified Hezbollah terrorist Imad Mughniyeh, who was killed in Syria, as “an extraordinary hero and a beacon of light.” He was implicated in the 1983 bombings of the U.S. Embassy and Marine military barracks in Lebanon, killing 300 people, and the bombing of Israeli Embassy and Jewish Community Center in Buenos Aires in 1992 and 1994, respectively, which killed more than 100 people.In February, Abbas told the Jordanian daily paper Al-Dustour about his pride in pioneering terrorism, saying, “I had the honor of firing the first shot in 1965 and being the one who taught resistance to many in the region and around the world.
We, Fatah, had the honor of leading the resistance. We introduced everyone, including Hezbollah, as to what the resistance means. Hezbollah were trained in our camps.”Moreover, the indoctrination of children to hate has been continuing by the PA. In school textbooks and maps used in 2008 by PA, the state of Palestine exits in a world without Israel or Israeli cites like Tel Aviv. The textbooks repeatedly reject Israel’s right to exist and glorify jihad and martyrdom.As Hamas did last year, PA TV in September used the universally beloved characters of Mickey Mouse, Winnie the Pooh and Piglet in an attempt to create a Disney-like studio. All the while, they taught children through a quiz to glorify terrorism, including the female terrorist Dalal Mughrabi, who participated in the murder of 12 Israeli children and 25 adults in a 1978 bus attack. In another children’s quiz broadcast this month on PA television, children are shown identifying every Israeli city and landmark as part of the state of Palestine.
Cut off tiesPalestinian society is already lost to the civilized and Western world. Their hearts and minds have been taken for far too long by evil, terrorist indoctrination. Peace is not possible for Israel until they are “deprogrammed” to the point they can coexist with the Jewish state. Since they do not have the leadership to save them and force the change, it should be the obligation of Israel and U.S. to help save them from themselves. Israel and the U.S. should halt negotiations and cut ties with the PA and Abbas — including their financial support — until a new leadership is forced to arise to stop the anti-Israeli “infestation” that permeates every aspect of Palestinian life.