Op-Ed: This is the Enemy
Published: Sunday, May 30, 2004 5:01 PM
[WARNING: The following contains graphic descriptions of violence.]
Nissan Ratzlav-KatzNissan Ratzlav-Katz is opinion editor at Israel National News.com, and frequently writes for leading American opinion journals and newspapers. His commentaries have been published internationally and translated into several languages.
Nick Berg, an American from Philadelphia, was kidnapped and tortuously beheaded by Arabs in Iraq sometime in May. The murderers filmed the deed and proudly displayed the victim's severed head.
After killing six Israeli soldiers in an attack on an armored vehicle in Gaza on May 11, the Arabs near the scene of the carnage gleefully held aloft human body parts in front of rolling cameras. One of the Arab terrorists was later interviewed on film with what appeared to be a human head in front of him.
The week before, after shooting at Tali Hatuel's car, causing it to skid and stop, Arab terrorists walked over to the vehicle to finish the occupants off. They looked at the heavily pregnant mother and her four no-doubt frightened girls; the youngest was two years old. And then shot them all. At point-blank range. With sadistic satisfaction, they systematically murdered Tali Hatuel and her unborn son, as well as all of Tali's daughters - Hila, age 11, Hadar, 9, Roni, 7, and two-year-old Meirav.
In Fallujah in March, crowds of townspeople dragged four American civilians out of their vehicles, shot or beat them to death, mutilated their bodies, dragged them through the streets, suspended them from a bridge and burned them.
And they danced and cheered.
With their children.
In Ramallah in 2000, two Israeli soldiers were kidnapped, beaten, stabbed countless times, had their eyes gouged out, and were literally disemboweled and dismembered by an Arab lynch mob.
The people - and I use the term loosely - who carried out the initial beatings threw one of the victims down to the waiting mob, where his face was further crushed with stones, feet, fists and even a heavy metal window frame. One Jew was set on fire and dragged along the street as Arab onlookers danced and cheered. Some of the butchers celebrated their crimes with the victims' internal organs. One of the killers, famously captured on film, proudly displayed his blood-soaked hands to the cheering Ramallah crowd.
And it gets worse. In 2003, nearly two years later, Arab parents in Gaza cheered again when their little children dressed up as members of the Ramallah lynch mob, complete with hands painted blood red, for a kindergarten graduation ceremony.
According to a report by Dr. Michael Widlanski, an Israeli Arabic expert, the Voice of Palestine called the attack on the Hatuel girls "an act of heroic martyrdom". The targeted children and their mother, the PA radio reported only as "five settlers".
Among the participants at the funerals of the Hatuel family members was President of Israel Moshe Katzav. He said, "This day of blood will be engraved in our history. An earthquake has happened. No one in the world can stand apathetically by in the face of these acts by such evil people. Where are those who speak in the name of Allah?"
National Review contributing editor David Frum posed the same question in his May 12 "Diary" on NRO: "Where are the imams?" he asked.
Some of "those who speak in the name of Allah," Mr. President, were busy sawing Nick Berg's head from his body in Iraq. "Allah is great!" they shouted in triumphal glee as they killed their bound and helpless victim. The imams are in the mosques, Mr. Frum, waving swords and exhorting their followers to behead a Jew: "Allah willing, we will cut off his head! Oh Jews! Allah is great! Allah is great!" They are also in Saudi Arabian palaces, telling their subjects that they are 95% certain Zionists are behind Islamist terrorism. They are also writing for the Arab media, explaining that Jews are behind all the evil in the world. And they are even organizing soccer matches, Mr. President, honoring mass murderers.
This is the enemy. Don't look away.
Perhaps when another rally is held in support of Iraqi "resistance" or "Palestinian liberation" somewhere in the world, counter-protesters can remind the ever-so-sensitive and progressive demonstrators of Nick Berg's scream of pain, or of two-year-old Meirav Hatuel cowering in her car seat, or of the Ramallah or Fallujah savages dancing with human entrails.
During the lynch of the two IDF soldiers who had taken a wrong turn into Ramallah in 2000, one of the Arab murderers paused in his savage beating to answer a cell phone belonging to one of the dying soldiers.
He told the worried voice on the other end of the line, "We are killing your husband."
There is a Talmudic dictum that states, "One who is merciful to the cruel, will ultimately cause cruelty to the merciful."
It seems to me that we, Israelis and Americans, have proven the Talmudic sages absolutely correct. Please, no more mercy.