By Stephen M. Flatow/JNS.org
The details of last month’s stabbing of two elderly Israeli women have finally been released, and they include several troubling revelations.
On May 11, the two women, ages 82 and 86, were stabbed by two Palestinian terrorists on the popular Haas Promenade in Jerusalem’s Armon Hanatziv neighborhood. We already knew, from one of the victims’ friends, that Arab workers standing nearby refused her pleas to call an ambulance.
But now we also know—from the details that the Israeli police recently released—that the attackers discussed their plans for the attack on their Facebook pages, and that after the attack, they also communicated via WhatsApp. Remember when we used to think that economic advancement, and the availability of modern technology, would lead the Palestinians to become more moderate? Remember the idea that if the Arabs personally experienced the benefits of the modern world, they would not risk losing it by resorting to terrorism? Instead of Facebook and WhatsApp leading to moderation, young Arabs are using them in the service of extremism and violence.
The most disturbing revelation about the May 11 attack is that the two attackers were only 16 and 17 years old, and the mother of one of them was herself recently arrested for attempting to stab Jews near Jerusalem.
A 16-year-old should be going to the movies with friends, worrying about his first date, and learning how to drive. What could possess him to instead savagely stab two elderly women who no doubt closely resemble his own grandmother?
No Palestinian child is born a terrorist. They are raised to be that way. These two teenage stabbers were educated in Palestinian Authority (PA) schools where the children are taught to believe that Jews are evil and that murdering Jews is not only justified but obligatory. They attended mosques where imams preached hatred. They watched PA television and radio, where terrorists are hailed as “martyrs” and “heroes.”
And the fact that the mother of one of the stabbers was herself a terrorist gives us a pretty good idea of the kinds of ideas that were communicated around the dinner table in their home.
Earlier this year, I wrote about the father of 16-year-old Murad Adais, who broke into the home of a young Israeli Jewish mother of six and brutally stabbed her to death. “I am proud of my son,” the father announced.
Not long after that, the official Facebook page of the Fatah movement (which is headed by PA President Mahmoud Abbas) posted a large photo of the mother of the late Muhammed Shamasneh, a Palestinian terrorist who stabbed three Jews near the Jerusalem central bus station. His mother was smiling broadly and making a “V” sign with her right hand. The caption under the photo read, “How great you are, O mother of the Martyr.”
The website of Palestinian Media Watch (www.palwatch.org) overflows with similar examples of pro-terrorism statements by parents of Palestinian terrorists.
Supporters of the Palestinian cause are always telling us that ordinary Palestinians are just like ordinary folks everywhere. They claim that Palestinian moms and dads have the same concerns as moms and dads in America, Israel, and anyplace else.
But when we see what it is that many Palestinian moms and dads actually say and do, we have to rethink those kinds of assumptions. Back in 1996, then-first lady Hillary Clinton authored a children’s book titled “It Takes a Village.” Her argument was that a child is shaped in part by the various people who live in his or her village and the cultural influences to which the child is subjected.
The typical Palestinian village is saturated with glorification of violence and hatred of Jews. The schools teach it, the imams preach it, and the government-sponsored news media promote it. But the Palestinian culture of hatred and violence begins with parents who praise the violence, who encourage their children to admire it, and who themselves sometimes practice it.
Stephen M. Flatow, an attorney in New Jersey, is the father of Alisa Flatow, who was murdered in an Iranian-sponsored Palestinian terrorist attack in 1995.
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