The calm in Tel Aviv was shattered Wednesday night when two Arab gunmen in their 20s from the Palestinian Authority-controlled village of Yatta drew automatic weapons and began to systematically gun down every civilian in sight. When the carnage was over, four people – two men and two women – were dead and about a dozen others were wounded, three of them critically. Both terrorists were caught alive, though one sustained serious wounds during his apprehension. Israeli doctors performed life-saving emergency surgery on him while his victims were either dead or dying.
The blood on the pavement hadn’t even dried before “Palestinians,” as is their custom, celebrated the “heroic Tel Aviv operation.” In Palestinian lexicon, terrorist attacks targeting innocent civilians – men, women and children – are routinely referred to as “heroic” or “martyrdom operations.”
As Israelis were burying their dead, celebratory fireworks were going off in Hamas-controlled Gaza while elsewhere, in the PA-controlled West Bank, Palestinian Arabs were cheering and passing out sweets in recognition of their comrades’ bestial slaughter. Even the so-called “moderate” Palestinian President for Life, Mahmoud Abbas, couldn’t bring himself to call the Tel Aviv massacre, “terrorism” or “murder.” Instead, all he was able to muster was half-hearted disapproval. He issued a repulsive and disingenuous statement noting that the PA is opposed “to any ‘operation’ that harms civilians by anybody, regardless of the justifications.” Note use of the word “operation” to describe wanton violence and depravity.
The Obama administration predictably gave Abbas a free pass and did not bother challenging his fake and rather pathetic statement of disapproval. This is an administration that has time and again failed to hold the PA to normal standards of morality and have them account for their aberrant behavior. Instead, the administration is besotted by Israeli “settlements” as though this was the cause of all the world’s ills. The administration deceitfully overlooks the fact that blame for this terror attack and many others rests squarely on the shoulders of Abbas and his Palestinian Authority which encourages incitement through official and unofficial channels. In every Palestinian venue and forum, in print and social media, Jews are routinely referred to as apes, pigs, monkeys, thieves and child killers.
Ironically, the attack comes on the heels of several Israeli goodwill gestures to the Palestinians, including the issuance of nearly 90,000 travel permits, allowing Palestinians to travel to Israel in deference to the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. The Palestinians in turn responded by blowing people away in a café, giving new meaning to the old adage of “no good deed goes unpunished.”
Truth Revolt’s Tiffany Gabbay described the terrorists as worse than animals “because even animals do not kill for sadistic pleasure.” That assessment is accurate. The horrific CCTV footage of the attack reveals the true depths of their depravity. After shooting a civilian, who is seen lying motionless on the floor, one of the terrorist is observed gratuitously throwing a heavy object directly on the man’s head, causing the lifeless body to jolt. It was a sickening sight even by Palestinian standards of depravity.
More troubling however, is the jubilant reaction from the Palestinian street. This is a society that revels in gore and bloodshed. It is a society that celebrates death – death of Jews and of American citizens. Following the September 11 attacks that resulted in the deaths of 3,000 people, Palestinians cheered. Old women were seen ululating while men danced, clapped, chanted Allahuakbar (what else?) and handed out sweets to mark the “joyous” event. Following the Boston Marathon bombing, they repeated the macabre spectacle, reveling in the murder of innocents.
Arab apologists have attempted to justify the attacks, placing the blame not on the attackers but rather their victims, obscenely claiming that the “occupation” prompted the terrorists to act like bloody savages. They should be reminded however, that there was no “occupation” in 1920, 1921, 1929 and 1936 when Arabs perpetrated violent pogroms against Jewish citizens living under the British mandate.
Those advocating for Palestinian statehood and independence should take note of Palestinian societal responses to acts of barbarism and savagery. Societies are capable of producing monsters but their deviant actions are reviled and condemned by the majority. But in the Palestinian case, the opposite holds true. They take pleasure in hearing news of butchery inflicted on civilians. It happened after 9-11. It happened after the Boston marathon attack and it happened after the Tel Aviv café attack.
A society that collectively cheers when women and children are ruthlessly murdered and revels in gore and death is undeserving of statehood. This macabre mindset represents the single largest obstacle to peace and until it can be altered, negotiations are pointless.