The cameras don’t often linger at the site of a suicide bombing in Israel. Most reporters prefer the “occupied territories,” where they can set up shop and await a staged stone-throwing.
The Palestinian Authority is the photojournalist’s one-stop shop for all the fake David vs. Goliath images his heart desires. Simple metaphors for simple, bigoted minds—that’s what this rather louche sort peddles to his voracious clients at The Associated Press, ABC, the Canadian CBC, etc.
Not to be outdone, CNN always takes care to count the suicide bomber among the dead. If you tune into that network, be sure to subtract one or two (depending on the trash implicated) to arrive at the number of human beings who perished.
“A falafel restaurant in a gritty, working-class section of Tel Aviv” was the latest target, reported The New York Times. The act was carried out by Islamic Jihad, which hasn’t yet been invited to join the Palestinian government, but enjoys Hamas’ solid support.
The blast killed nine people and wounded 60. There’s something else the networks and news agencies rarely expound upon: the injuries inflicted by these demonic devices. As I’ve written in this space:
“The task facing Israeli medics has become routine. Surgeons must slice open the victims of these fiendish devices, picking from the flesh and burrowing in the bone for embedded shards of shrapnel, ball bearings and nails. The rat poison is a diabolic touch, intended to intensify internal bleeding. If they survive, victims are…wracked by life-long disfigurement and pain.”
Another little-mentioned fact has to do with the Israeli security fence—it is the reason there haven’t been any attacks for so long. The wall that separates Israeli from Palestinian territory—and makes liberals, libertarians, and plain old bigots like Bob Novak shriek like stuck pigs—has cut by over 80 percent the number of Israelis maimed and murdered by suicide bombers.
This barrier is not a political border; it can be dismantled. But lives taken by terrorism cannot be reconstituted. Still, mention any security fence intended to prevent undesired or undesirable human acts, and the Kumbaya Crowd launches into maudlin impersonations of the sainted Ronald Reagan, RIP: “tear down this wall.”
Incidentally, Emperor Hadrian built a wall in 122 A.D. to keep barbarians out of Roman Britain, thus ensuring three centuries of peace. And the Chin Emperor sought the same goal when he erected the Great Wall in the third century B.C. It doesn’t seem to have occurred to those who invoke the portentous metaphor of the Berlin Wall that, unlike the Roman, Chinese, Israeli, and yet-to-be-built American-Mexican wall, the Iron Curtain was constructed to keep people in, not out.
To be fair to Novak (who is a rightist), I very much doubt he’d protest an American-Mexican wall. His concern for Jewish life being what it is, he has confined his steadfast objections only to one particular, infinitely civilized—and passive—form of self-defense: the barrier separating Israeli from Palestinian territories; that pathetic attempt by Israelis to curtail the killing of their innocent compatriots.
The same palpable bad faith characterizes the United Nations. Its members have denounced the Jew-saving contraption, while announcing plans to bulwark bureaucrats behind a security fence surrounding their New York headquarters.
Ditto the European Union. It has censured Israel for the wall, while revealing plans to erect one of its own “to protect EU members Poland and Hungary from ‘the free movement of migrants’ from Russia, Belarus, and Ukraine,” as author Stephanie Gutmann has written.
Other barriers that fail to move the “tear-down-this-wall” humanitarians to do their St. Vitus Dance are those separating India and Pakistan, Botswana and Zimbabwe, Uzbekistan and Kyrgyztan, Thailand and Malaysia, and Turkey and Syria (this one is mined).
Anti-Semitism, perhaps? How dare you, Ilana!
Novak, at worst, is merely an overzealous tree-hugger. In his last column, he worked himself into a stew over “Israel’s 2001 destruction of 500 olive trees, in reaction to … a settler’s murder.”
The sons of Muhammad murder; and the children of Abraham retaliate by chopping down trees! It was against the latter’s barbarism that philosopher Elizabeth Anscombe was protesting when she stated: “Certain things are forbidden, whatever the consequences—there are things the virtuous person simply will not contemplate.”
Anscombe was, naturally, speaking of clear cutting, not calculated killing.
So what, then, has changed since the Hamas hitmen usurped Mahmoud Abbas’ al Aqsa Brigades in the gangland that is the Palestinian Authority? Not much:
Hamas applauded the April-17 attack, calling it “a legitimate response to Israeli ‘aggression’”; Abbas applauded the same premeditated evil, calling it “an attack [that] harms the Palestinian interest,” the likes of which must be stopped by the government.
Contrary to mainstream-media prattle, the blast has not exposed a rift among Palestinian leaders; it has exposed differences in style. Abbas and his goons, who carried out countless attacks on civilians in their heyday, are of the Arafat school of Taqiyya: they lie in order to make The Community and the Quran look good. Hamasniks don’t beat about the bush. They expect to be loved just the way they are.
© 2006 By Ilana Mercer