The IDF is still searching for the perpetrators of last Friday's terror murders in Itamar, and the Palestinian Authority, which has condemned the murders of the five members of the Fogel family as “inhuman,” says that it is cooperating fully with Israel in tracking down the murderers. But while the PA condemns the most recent attack, it has been providing awards and recognition to the terrorists who carried out the last terror attack in Itamar, in 2002, among many others.
It is that recognition, says Itamar Marcus of Israel Media Watch, that created an atmosphere in which terrorist murders could slaughter a three month old infant in cold blood, and expect to be applauded on the “Palestinian street” for such a barbaric attack. “It's not just an issue of incitement, but the creation of a whole society that presents murderers of Israelis as heroes worthy of emulation,” Marcus told Arutz 7. “It's not just the media, that is just one aspect of the problem,” he said. “It's the naming of squares, streets, sport tournaments, summer camps, and so much more after terrorists. It's the continuing visits by the PA Minister in charge of terrorists in Israeli jails to the mourning tents of Arabs killed after they carried out a successful terror attack. And it's the continued presentation of Israel as the enemy in PA textbooks and classroom materials.”
As evidence for his claims, Marcus presents a long list of awards, rewards, and honors presented by the PA in honor of terrorists who carried out murderous attacks on Israelis. For example, on March 9 – just two days before the massacre in Itamar – PA chief Mahmoud Abbas' advisor Sabri Saidam delivered a speech in which he emphasized that the PA's weapons must be turned against Israel, and suggested naming a square in the town of El-Birteh after Dalal Mughrabi, one of the perpetrators of 1978 coastal highway massacre. Two days earlier, the PA's Al Hayat Al-Jadida, published an item to the effect that the management of a youth club in Ramallah planned to hold a soccer tournament in memory of Wafa Idris, a suicide bomber. And in January, the Governor of Jenin issued a grant worth $2,000 to the family of Khaldoun Samoudi, a terrorist who was killed while trying to detonate two bombs against IDF soldiers at the Beka'ot Crossing.
Speaking at a government meeting this week on PA incitement, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanuyahu said that “regrettably, we see the PA awarding scholarships to the families of murderers. We see that they name squares after terrorists who murdered dozens of Israelis. These do not jibe with education for peace.”
Marcus advised Israelis not to take the PA's condemnation of the latest terror attack too seriously. “They felt that this time they had to pay lip service to condemn the attack because of its particular barbarity,” he said. “What's important to remember is that soon, a public square or summer camp will be named for these terrorists.”