March 27, 2011
"Hope and Horror"
On Friday the first International Marathon was run in Jerusalem. It tied up the city completely, as police blocked main roads to traffic so the runners could pass through.
But it was a fantastic event, because it provided press and international attention regarding something completely normal going on in Jerusalem. And it was gratifying to see that people did not refuse to run.
Two days after a terror attack, no one pulled out. There were 10,000 runners from 40 countries.
I think this delivers a heartening message.
Said Jerusalem mayor Nir Barkat before the event:
“Our answer to the murderous terrorists is that we will never stop running."
“Jerusalem doesn’t stop and won’t stop. The real Jerusalem will be showcased in the marathon. A peaceful, happy and healthy city which is more beautiful than ever.”
And not incidentally do I want to mention that it was sponsored by Adidas, in spite of Palestinian Arab PR demanding they not "run with apartheid."
The "Grand Mufti of Jerusalem" declared that “Israel is exploiting sports as a policy tool to Judaise the city."
What else is new?
Would that there were only good things to write about. What I wish to address here is the antithesis of "good news." Very very painful stuff, and I apologize for this.
On the one hand, I want to be careful to present verified information. On the other hand, I want to inform my readers about precisely what we face here.
The issue at hand is the recent terror attack in Itamar, in which five members of the Fogel family were wantonly slaughtered. The news that was released after the attack said that the three-month old baby girl, Hadas, had her throat slit. But then information started to come out regarding the fact that she was allegedly decapitated and I began receiving queries about this.
I say quite candidly that I lost a night's sleep over this. It is beyond comprehension, but the truth must be pursued. I attempted to verify the information and was able to acquire only hearsay. Those closest to the situation were not able (emotionally) to speak to me about it.
And so, while I strongly suspect the veracity of these reports, I cannot state this information as fact.
But, wanting to share more with my readers -- so that there IS full comprehension of what we deal with -- I share a blog entry by Daniel Greenfield, writing as Sultan Knish, "The Muslim terrorist War Against Israeli Families":
"The brutal murders of the Fogel family, including the partial decapitation of a 3 month old baby, the stabbing a 3 year old twice in the heart, and the murder of both their parents, along with an 11 year old brother who was staying up late reading in bed, have shocked the world. But the Muslim terrorist tactic of massacring families is not a new one. It has been a signature move of the PLO in its various phases, especially the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigade.
"Many of us would like to think that men who murder children are an aberration even in a terrorist movement. That perhaps the terrorists who murdered the Fogel family did not deliberately target children. It would be nice to think that we live in a world where such acts are an aberration rather than a tactic. Sadly that isn't so. We live next door to evil. And it is vital that we see that and not look away. (Emphasis added)
"Almost 10 years ago to the date, Mahmoud Mahmed Mahmoud Amrou set up a sniper rifle and took aim at a mother and father walking with a stroller. In the stroller was their baby daughter. She was 10 months old. Mahmoud had three targets in front of him. The parents were the easiest targets. Instead Mahmoud took aim and shot a 10 month old little girl in the head.
"Consider the head of an adult and a child. Which is easier to hit from a distance? Her parents were young. Her father capable of military service. Her mother could still have more children. Even from the tactical standpoint of a terrorist, they were better targets. But Shalhevet Pass, the 10 month old baby girl, was the one he shot in the head..."
While in "Why Do They Slaughter?" Dr. Mordecai Kedar has this to say:
"What is common to Daniel Perl, Nick Berg, the Jews of Hebron in 1929 and the Fogel family? They were butchered. They were not simply stabbed to death, but were killed by an act designed to decapitate them or to cause fatal bleeding by severing their carotid artery. Another common denominator: all were slaughtered by Moslems. An endless list of Moslem girls and women can be added to them, those who were similarly slaughtered by their brothers, fathers or other relatives for 'violating the family honor.' A question that arises automatically is where does this Moslem tendency to this kind of slaughter come from?
"...In western societies, slaughter seems barbaric, while members of Moslem societies view it as proper and commendable when carried out within the proper context. Therefore, slaughtering a Jew, a Christian or anyone seen as an enemy is not considered unusual in traditional Islamic societies. This is what professional jargon calls a 'cultural difference.'"
http://www.imra.org.il/story.php3?id=51448 (Scroll down nine paragraphs)
There is unrest in the nations all about Israel. An accounting of what is transpiring in each instance would not be possible in this posting. And, if truth be told, no one knows how it will all work out.
Yet I must share this, which seems an indication of the fact that the Obama administration has trouble getting it right:
Speaking today on CBS's "Face the Nation," Secretary of State Clinton said there would be no action taken by the US in Syria, as there has been in Libya. Qaddafi had strafed his own population in Libya, while Assad has merely sent out police to massacre people in the streets. Elaborating, Clinton indicated that Congresspersons from both parties see Assad as a "reformer."
Would she care to run that by us again? This is the Assad who re-armed Hezbollah, right?
A US administration official was cited in the NY Times as saying, Assad "probably disqualified himself as a peace partner for Israel. You can’t have a comprehensive peace without Syria. It’s definitely in our interest to pursue an agreement, but you can’t do it with a government that has no credibility with its population."
What insights! What planning! They can't get the PA to sit down with Israel, and yet they were hoping for a "comprehensive" peace?
Secretary of Defense Robert Gates was here in Israel last Thursday, and held a press conference with Defense Minister Ehud Barak. Gates pointed out accurately enough that US-Israeli security relations are perhaps as strong as they've ever been, and that there is a US interest in helping Israel maintain a qualitative edge in weaponry. I am convinced, certainly, that the Pentagon is with us.
But then Gates had to ruin the tone of his remarks by urging Israel to work harder to achieve "peace" with the Palestinian Arabs. "There is a need and an opportunity for bold action to move forward a two-state solution," he intoned. An opportunity?
What seems to be the case is that the US administration imagines that if it provides us with assistance in missile defense we will then declare ourselves to be so secure that it will be possible for us to sacrifice strategic depth and the Jordan Valley and high places in Samaria, in order to "make peace."
Gates met with Prime Minister Netanyahu, who had just returned from Russia, on Friday, and moved on to Ramallah.
This is cute:
On Thursday, the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva denounced the Israeli presence on the Golan Heights.
PA President Mahmoud Abbas met in Ramallah yesterday with a Hamas delegation in order to explain to them his unity initiative. His stated goal is to see Palestinian Arabs united before the September initiative to seek UN recognition of a Palestinian state.
Additionally he spoke of the need to confront the "continuing Israeli aggression." Right now Hamas and Islam Jihad are lobbing rockets, including Grad Katyushas, into Israel, and Israeli authorities are debating the best response. Targeting assassinations may turn out to be the action of choice.
Hamas is deeply divided on the matter of unity. Abbas was supposed to visit Gaza recently, but the suggestion that he come was not well received.
Netanyahu has been quite clear on this issue: "Abbas has to choose whether he wants peace with Israel or peace with Hamas. He can't have both."
An Israeli medical team of 50 personnel plus 18 tons of aid have landed in Japan. They will set up in Kunhara, about six hours outside of Tokyo.
© Arlene Kushner. This material is produced by Arlene Kushner , functioning as an independent journalist. Permission is granted for it to be reproduced only with proper attribution.
see my website www.ArlenefromIsrael.info
Technorati Tag: Fogel Family and Middle East.