While Israel was twisting in the wind because of an ill-timed announcement on progress in Jerusalem construction, the PA was “officially” canceling a ceremony honoring a terrorist – but conducting it anyway on the sly.
It occurred on March 11. Israel was in the midst of being hauled over the coals after a Jerusalem municipal committee announced a routine passage of a stage in the approval process of a housing project in Ramat Shlomo – right after U.S. Vice President Joe Biden had arrived on a sensitive visit to Israel.
The PA apparently learned the lesson, and announced that its upcoming public square-naming ceremony in Ramallah for a woman who had murdered 37 Israelis was being “postponed for technical reasons.” Despite Israeli pressure to call off the ceremony altogether, the PA announced only its postponement.
The female terrorist in question is Dalal Mughrabi, who led the largest terrorist attack in Israeli history. Known as the Coastal Road Massacre, it involved the shooting of a nature photographer on the beach, commandeering a taxi and two buses, and firing wildly at passing cars and civilians who tried to escape. In the end, a total of 37 Israeli civilians were murdered, including 13 children, and 71 were wounded.
Despite the official postponement of the ceremony in Mughrabi's honor, however, it turned out that dozens of people showed up at the scheduled time and “dedicated” the square in Mughrabi’s memory. Among the participants were top members of the Palestinian Authority leadership such as Tawfiq Tirawi, Mustafa Abu Rabbi’a, a senior Fatah figure in Ramallah, and Jamal Hawil, a member of the Fatah faction in the Palestinian Legislative Council. A large banner/picture of Mughrabi was placed in the square.
Tirawi , a former PA General Intelligence Services director, has gone on record as stating, "We are all Dalal Mughrabi" and that "for us, she is not a terrorist.”
The Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center (ITIC) reports that the official PA media covered the event, devoting a number of programs and newspaper columns to it and emphasizing Dalal Mughrabi’s importance. For instance, the official Palestinian TV station broadcast a memorial program in her honor. Her sister Rashida, currently an officer in the Palestinian Authority security forces, appeared on the program and said, “Today is a day of pride and victory for the Palestinian people and a day of pain for the Zionists.”
ITIC posted a photograph of a large banner honoring Mughrabi in Ramallah, with Tirawi one of those holding the banner.