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Three Jewish funerals and an Israeli hate-fest

The terrorist murder of two children and a newlywed didn’t put a dent in the demonstrations against the so-called “death of democracy.”

The funeral of 7-year-old Asher Menachem Paley, victim of an Arab car-ramming attack the previous day at a bus stop in Jerusalem, Feb. 11, 2023. Photo by Noam Revkin Fenton/Flash90.
The funeral of 7-year-old Asher Menachem Paley, victim of an Arab car-ramming attack the previous day at a bus stop in Jerusalem, Feb. 11, 2023. Photo by Noam Revkin Fenton/Flash90.
Ruthie Blum. Credit: Courtesy.
Ruthie Blum
Ruthie Blum, an author and award-winning columnist, is a former adviser at the office of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Imagine the scene on Saturday night at 8-year-old Asher Menachem Paley’s funeral. The previous morning, he and his brother, Yaakov, 6, had been among a group of Jews targeted by an Arab terrorist on a car-ramming rampage in Jerusalem’s Ramot neighborhood.

Yaakov was killed on the spot. He was laid to rest a few hours later, before the onset of Shabbat.

Asher was rushed, in critical condition, to Shaare Zedek medical center. Despite doctors’ efforts to save his life, he died of his wounds the next day.

Their 10-year-old brother, Moishie, whose injuries from the attack were far lighter, was treated and quickly released from the hospital. This enabled him, along with his five other siblings and their mother, to be present at both burials.

Their father, Avraham, on the other hand, couldn’t attend either. The 42-year-old had been with the above three of his six kids when Hussein Karaka, 31—an Israeli citizen residing in Issawiya in eastern Jerusalem—accelerated his Mazda into them and the several other people standing at a bus stop.

Avraham’s “moderate” condition didn’t allow for him to part properly with his little boys or be present to comfort his devastated wife and surviving children. He was forced to remain, in physical and emotional pain, at the Hadassah Medical Center/Mount Scopus.

The third victim slain by Karaka (who, thankfully, was fatally shot by a police officer who happened to be in the vicinity) was 20-year-old newlywed Alter Shlomo Lederman. His funeral, like that of Asher Paley, was held on Saturday night.

You know what else took place on Saturday night? The usual, pre-scheduled anti-government protests at select locations in major cities. Egged on and financially backed by the far-left New Israel Fund, the demonstrators didn’t give a moment’s thought to the timing of their public tantrum.

Their attitude, clearly, is that the “show must go on,” come rain, shine or the slaughter of innocent Jews. And what a performance it’s been.

Though touted as part of a campaign to “rescue Israeli democracy” from certain demise at the hands of judicial reformers, the intersectional banners and slogans at the weekly happenings tell a slightly different story. Indeed, the events ostensibly staged in the name of “love” for the country are filled with displays of hatred for its essence.

Take, for example, the PLO flags waved by angry activists decrying Israel Defense Forces operations against terrorists in Jenin. And this is while the International Criminal Court—at the behest of the U.N. General Assembly—is preparing an “advisory opinion” on Israel’s “prolonged occupation, settlement and annexation of Palestinian territory.”

Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas, who spearheaded the UNGA resolution, must be thrilled to see thousands of Israelis condemning their ruling coalition, especially when some protesters are openly promoting his cause. After all, the coffers from which he draws the cash for his “pay for slay” scheme—to keep his people, and those among Israel’s Arab citizens who identify with them, spilling Jewish blood—are shrinking.

The money is about to dry up even more, in the wake of a decision by the new Security Cabinet to withhold the taxes and tariffs that Israel collected on behalf of the P.A., in the amount that Abbas paid last year to terrorists and their families.

No wonder he’s in Cairo at a conference with Arab League members, calling for the establishment of a fund to aid Jerusalem’s Arab residents through various “projects.” It doesn’t take a Hamas rocket scientist to figure out what the terrorist-in-a-tie has in mind.

This brings us back to Karaka, the Arab resident of Jerusalem whose evil deed was celebrated in Ramallah and Gaza. His supporters also circulated a cartoon of a Palestinian family about to eat a traditional dish called “maqluba.” In its center is Lederman’s severed head.

“Blessed Friday,” the Arabic text reads. “The sweetest Friday. The sweetest Palestinian maqluba.”

Though reportedly of “unsound mind”—Karaka was released from a psychiatric hospital in northern Israel mere days before killing Lederman and the two Paley children—his social-media activity indicates where his true heart and soul lay.

Previous Facebook posts included praise for Palestinian Islamic Jihad leader Ziad al-Nakhaleh and glorification of the “Lions’ Den” terrorists taken out by the IDF. In other words, he was an ideologue whose vehicular assault was not an out-of-the-blue “psychotic episode.”

Ditto for the eastern Jerusalem resident who gunned down worshipers at a Neve Yaakov synagogue on Jan. 27—International Holocaust Remembrance Day—murdering seven and wounding three others. Nor was the near-fatal shooting the next morning of a father and son at the entrance to the City of David National Park by an eastern Jerusalem teen a fluke.

Those antisemitic onslaughts didn’t put a halt to the demonstrations either. The protesters in each case did open with a moment of silence for the terror victims, however, to assuage their consciences and preserve the moral high ground they appropriated.

All those who took to the streets in the immediate aftermath of such horrors should be ashamed of themselves. They won’t, of course. They’re too busy moralizing about the “death of Israeli democracy” to mourn dead Israelis.

Ruthie Blum is an Israel-based journalist and author of “To Hell in a Handbasket: Carter, Obama, and the ‘Arab Spring.’ ”

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