Who is responsible for the recent wave of terrorism?

The government is finally trying to stamp out the fires of terrorism, but seems unaware that it has provided some of the fuel.

Dr. Moshe Dann,

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Since Hamas has admitted its role, the answer is obvious.  But others are major contributors, especially PA incitement, the PLO’s Fatah, its armed wing, terrorist groups like Islamic Jihad, Al Aksa Martyrs Brigade, Hamas’ Israeli branch, the Islamic Movement, the Muslim Brotherhood, and the Wakf (the Islamic Authority).  They have created a culture of Jew-hatred supported by the Arab world. It’s called Jihad. This isn’t new, but two critical factors have been overlooked.

There are two important explanations for the outbreak of Arab terrorism.

First, the connection with prisoner exchanges – just as occurred previously.

Releasing thousands of unrepentant, dedicated Arab terrorists and criminals back into Israeli society results in violent uprisings: e.g.  the Jibril Agreement in 1985 which led to the “first Intifada (1987-88);” prisoner releases and further concessions in the mid and late 1990’s led to the “second Intifada” (2000-2003); and over a thousand Arab Palestinian terrorists released for Gilad Shalit (2011) created the basis for the current wave of terrorism.

The second explanation is connected to the rise of radical Islamic movements like ISIS, which has mobilized Muslim extremists from around the world and has – so far -- defeated far more powerful opponents. Their success has inspired other Muslim terrorists.

...the government prefers a Band-Aid approach to the problem; it subsidizes replacement and protective windows.
Hamas’ survival and its continued ability to attack Israel is also a powerful factor fueling terrorism.

Allowing Hamas to take over the Gaza Strip after the “Disengagement,” allowing it to rearm, allowing its Israeli branches to flourish in Israel, and allowing a constant stream of incitement by PA institutions, its leaders and its Arab representatives in Israeli political parties - all encourage Arab terrorism.  

Israeli government policy is complicit. Despite condemning Palestinian incitement, the Prime Minister’s Office and the security establishment have done little or nothing until now to stop it.

For years, the police have treated Arab stone-throwing and fire-bombing as a nuisance, rather than a crime. This neglect has allowed violence to spread and infect an entire generation.

As harassment of Jews who visit the Temple Mount and violent attacks by Arab gangs escalated, the police tried to ignore the problem until it became a dangerous daily confrontation.

Rather than holding Palestinian leaders responsible for attacks against Jews, the government, until now, seems to prefer talk rather than action. This only encourages violence.

The Ministry of Defense has also been culpable. Instead of protecting and supporting IDF soldiers, the government and especially the IDF have put them in harm’s way.  For example, sending a few soldiers to confront mobs of rioting Arabs is an inadequate response.  

Pro-Palestinian foreign activists are permitted to assist violent attacks against IDF soldiers – like violent confrontations at places like Nebi Saleh. Why aren’t they arrested and deported? Why aren’t Israelis involved in such actions arrested? Why are foreign and Arab activists and “journalists” allowed to harass IDF soldiers?

Instead of eliminating terrorist rock-and-bomb throwers and providing safe roads, the government prefers a Band-Aid approach to the problem; it subsidizes replacement and protective windows. As anyone driving along the narrow roads through Judea and Samaria knows, there is almost no police presence to protect Israelis from wild Arab drivers or rock and bomb attacks. Placing cameras on the road can’t insure safety and replace police.

And then, there is the daily indoctrination and incitement by the PA and Palestinian educational institutions.

According to reports, there are about a thousand Islamic Wakf schools in eastern Jerusalem and many more throughout Israel; although state-sanctioned, they have an anti-Israel and anti-Jewish agenda.  Two dozen Palestinian colleges and universities have the same agenda, including Al Quds University in Jerusalem, which is supported by Brandeis University and Bard College. 

UNRWA schools throughout Judea, Samaria and Gaza, as well as anti-Israel NGOs supported by the EU, NIF, and church groups have the same agenda. In addition, PA TV offers daily anti-Israel and anti-Jewish programming which fuels terrorism.

That Arab Palestinians are opposed to Israel’s existence and wage war against Jews is clear; they proclaim it proudly. That Arab and Muslim countries and the EU promote this is also clear. Yet, the media does not report it. Instead of presenting terrorism for what it is, the media showcases “violence,” as if there is no difference between perpetrator and victim.   

The government is finally trying to stamp out the fires of terrorism, but is seemingly unaware that it has provided some of the fuel by allowing Palestinian anti-Israel and anti-Jewish incitement.  Temporary actions will prevent the fire from spreading, but, without a determined policy to remove the incitement fuel, the fire will reignite.

The inability of a society to defend itself is the second stage of its demise; the first stage is its unwillingness to do so.   

The author is a PhD historian, writer and journalist. His book of short stories, "As Far As the Eye Can See," was recently published by the New English Review Press.