Tags: Barack Obama | Hillary Clinton | abbas | hallel yaffa ariel | clinton

Incendiary Rhetoric Spurred Barbaric Murder in Israel

Image: Incendiary Rhetoric Spurred Barbaric Murder in Israel
Rina Ariel bids farewell to her daughter, Hallel. (AP)

By    |   Friday, 01 Jul 2016 01:49 PM

Why isn’t there peace between Israel and the Palestinians? If you listened only to Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton, you’d think the blame rests largely on Israel. But the real reason for the lack of peace is obvious: Palestinian culture, from political and religious leaders to the media and schools, is awash in anti-Semitism and the glorification of terrorism.

When Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah announced two weeks ago that his government planned to increase payments to families of “all the martyrs” who have committed acts of terrorism against Israeli civilians, Western news media outlets ignored the story. Obama and Clinton said nothing. Perhaps they decided that the conduct of Palestinian officials, whose government is funded largely by U.S. and European taxpayers, is inconsequential.

But it is profoundly consequential.

On Thursday, a Palestinian terrorist broke into the home of a Jewish family in Kiryat Arba and viciously slaughtered 13-year-old Hallel Yaffa Ariel as she slept in her bed. She was stabbed 18 times.

The bloodthirsty murderer’s mother exulted in her son’s savagery, declaring, “My son is a hero. He made me proud. My son died as a martyr.” What kind of mother says that? What kind of human being feels that way?

From stabbing attacks to bus bombings to rocket attacks from Gaza, Israelis are under siege — and the terrorists who commit these acts draw their inspiration directly from their leaders.

Hamdallah — often touted in the West as a “moderate” — is hardly unique among Palestinian officialdom.

Only a few days ago, Sultan Abu Al-Einein, an adviser to President Mahmoud Abbas, urged his fellow Palestinians: “Every place you find an Israeli, slit his throat.”

Last week, in an address to the European parliament, Abbas claimed that “rabbis” had urged the Israeli government to poison the Palestinian water supply. Sadly, but not shockingly, the parliamentarians in Brussels gave Abbas’ vile remarks a standing ovation.

After his speech sparked an outcry, Abbas’ office issued a statement that “President Abbas has affirmed that he didn’t intend to do harm to Judaism or offend Jewish people from around the world.”

It is hard to say which is more outrageous: the making of these abhorrent remarks in the first place, or the refusal of Abbas to stand up and apologize, relying instead on an anemic statement from his office claiming that his intentions were not to offend.

When an Obama administration spokesman was asked to comment on Abbas’s remarks, he first protested, “I can’t confirm the veracity of that.” Pressed, he added, “We have long said what we want is for both sides to ratchet down not just the violence but the rhetoric which can inflame some of the violence.” Both sides?

Abbas’ actions should not surprise anyone. In fact, Abbas regularly employs anti-Semitic rhetoric and encourages violence to stir Palestinian and international passions, and it is a clear indication of what animates many Arabs’ feelings toward their Israeli neighbors.

What is surprising, and what runs counter to basic American values and basic American foreign policy interests, is the unwillingness of this administration and the Clinton campaign to clearly and loudly condemn Palestinian leaders for their actions, and then to hold them accountable with real consequences.

Palestinian terrorism is not just an Israeli problem, but an American one as well. In the past year alone, seven Americans have been murdered in Palestinian attacks.

As Abbas and the parliamentarians are acutely aware, blood libels throughout the centuries have incited mass executions of Jews. Any Arab leader genuinely seeking a just and lasting peace would never engage in such calumnies.

Similarly, a Palestinian leadership truly seeking peace or that truly had its own people’s interests at heart, would never support and glorify stabbing attacks, bus bombings or rocket assaults on civilian targets.

“Land for peace.” It is a common refrain heard from people who believe that all Israel must do to achieve peace is to cede land, that this conflict is rooted in a territorial dispute. But what if this assumption is mistaken? What if, instead of bringing about peace, handing over land to Palestinians increases the violence exhibited toward Israel?

Clearly, a land dispute cannot explain the Palestinians’ thirst for blood, including that of a 13-year-old innocent girl sleeping at home in her own bedroom. Even a cursory glance at young children’s schoolbooks reveals that the genuine motive behind Palestinian violence is not land, but deep religious hatred and a desire to destroy the Jewish state.

Israel’s neighbors must recognize and ultimately root out the corrosive hatred that permeates their society and precludes a meaningful peace from ever taking hold. Nowhere is this more true than with the Palestinian Authority leadership and President Mahmoud Abbas.

Mahmoud Abbas’s Palestinian Authority is kept afloat by the American taxpayer. It is dangerous to Americans and Israelis alike that Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton refuse to hold Palestinian leaders accountable for the terrorism they promote.

As we know from Orlando to Brussels, from San Bernardino to Istanbul and from Paris to Kiryat Arba, terrorists draw their inspiration from preachers of hate and violence. Sometimes these hate-mongers appear in online videos, and other times they masquerade as leaders.

I call on Mahmoud Abbas to condemn the murder of Hallel Yaffa Ariel, to end his government’s practice of paying salaries and benefits to terrorists and their families and to publicly apologize for the blood libel that he espoused in front of the European parliament. I call on the European Parliament to read this apology at its next session or, in the absence of an apology from Mr. Abbas, to acknowledge that his remarks were libelous.

Israel, the Jewish people, Hallel Yaffa Ariel and her family deserve no less.

Jason Greenblatt is an executive vice president, chief legal officer of The Trump Organization, co-founder of www.inspireconversation.com and an adviser on Israel to presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald J. Trump. You can follow him @JasonDovEsq.

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From stabbing attacks to bus bombings to rocket attacks from Gaza, Israelis are under siege — and the terrorists who commit these acts draw their inspiration directly from their leaders.
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Friday, 01 Jul 2016 01:49 PM
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