Mark SilverbergThe writer is a foreign policy analyst for the Ariel Center for Policy Research (Israel). He is a former member of the Canadian Justice Department, a past Director of the Canadian Jewish Congress (Western Office), a member of Hadassah's National Academic Advisory Board and a Contributing Editor for Family Security Matters and Intellectual Conservative. He served as a Consultant to the Secretary General of the Jewish Agency in Jerusalem during the first Palestinian intifada. His book "The Quartermasters of Terror: Saudi Arabia and the Global Islamic Jihad" and articles are archived at www.acpr.org.il andwww.marksilverbeg.com.
The mother of Amer Abu Aysha, one of the accused kidnapper/murderers of the Israeli teens, told Israel's Channel 10 news: "If he did the kidnapping, I'll be proud of him until my final day. I raised my children on the knees of the [Islamic] religion. They are religious guys, honest and clean-handed, and their goal is to bring the victory of Islam.”
In Palestinian Arab society, attitudes such as this are commonplace.
For 20 years, Abbas and his colleagues in the PA have encouraged a toxic Palestinian culture that glorifies terror and terrorists, indoctrinates the Palestinian Arabs through a culture of hatred and violence against Israel and Jews, describes them as human scum, and seeks their annihilation.
The Hamas Charter also makes it clear that the murder of Jews is not only defensible but necessary.
This message is communicated through nursery schools, universities, books, magazines, in their mosques, in summer camps, on television, radio and the Internet. Palestinian Arabs of all ages are taught that Jews have no right to live. In fact, they are encouraged to murder them and to view contributing to their death as their highest goal in life.
The results are predictable. Nearly 2,000 Israelis have been murdered in Palestinian terror attacks since the PA was established. Hostage taking - a recognized war crime - is presented as one of the highest achievements in Palestinian culture. This is why the overwhelming majority of Palestinians applauded and celebrated the kidnapping (and subsequent murder) of the three Israeli teens.
What kind of society names kindergartens, schools, summer camps, sports tournaments and other institutions after terrorists and uses young suicide bombers as pedagogic role models?
In a particularly striking case, at the end of 2012, the Fatah Facebook page posted an image of Dalal Mughrabi, a female terrorist who participated in the deadliest attack in Israel's history -- the killing of 37 civilians in the 1978 Coastal Road Massacre. The image was posted with the declaration: 'On this day in 1959 Martyr (Shahida) Dalal Mughrabi was born, hero of the 'Martyr Kamal Adwan' mission, bride of Jaffa and the gentle energizing force of Fatah.'
What kind of society encourages celebrations in its streets to mark the murder of Jews and Israelis?
What kind of society uses its summer camps to train thousands of its children how to make firebombs, use firearms, and ambush and kidnap Israelis?
What kind of society allows the portrayal of Jews as vermin and allows publication on its government’s Facebook page of a cartoon of three rats, each bearing the Star of David, dangling from a fishing rod?
What kind of society allows its official Palestinian Authority (PA) media to broadcast young Palestinian girls singing about Jews as 'the sons of apes and pigs' or (on January 9th, 2012), a sermon by a Palestinian Imam, in the presence of the PA Minister of Religious Affairs, referring to Jews as 'apes and pigs' and repeating the hadith about Muslims killing Jews hiding behind trees and rocks, because 'Judgment Day will not come before you fight the Jews.'
What kind of society allows its own government websites (in Arabic) to continue to feature the original PLO and Fatah covenants and other founding documents, all of which explicitly rule out recognition or peace with Israel and assert a claim to all of historic Palestine.
What kind of society produces mothers who encourage their children to become suicide bombers and to slaughter their neighbors as in the case of the Fogel family of Itamar on March 11th, 2011? After having stabbed to death the parents, a boy of eleven, his four-year-old brother, and their three-month old sister - at the trial, the terrorists regretted not having noticed two other sleeping children in the home.
What kind of society encourages its soldiers to hide among civilians during battle and to use children as human shields?
What kind of society creates a cultural milieu of vengeance, violence and death and consciously and purposely sacrifices its own youth for political gain and tactical advantage through a death cult? Not since the Children's Crusade in 1212 has there been a horror such as this.
Would any Israeli mother raise her children to become kidnappers and murderers and proudly say so to journalists?
Perhaps the Palestinians and their sympathizers in the Western media and the EU should recognize that a culture that openly celebrates martyrdom and the murder of Jews is not fit for statehood.
Brett Stephens of the Wall Street Journal wrote recently that “post-war German society went through a process of moral rehabilitation that began with recognition of what it had done.” It is highly unlikely however, that such moral rehabilitation could have taken place until the scourge of Nazism had been completely expunged from German society.
According to the 2003 U.S. Senate Committee Hearing on Palestinian Education, between 72% and 80% of children living in the Palestinian Authority yearn to die as martyrs.
Until this culture of death worship has been expunged from Palestinian society, Palestinian statehood must never be granted.