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January 17, 2003 - Image 35

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 2003-01-17

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Restraint Breeds Terrorism


ven by the grim standards of
recent years, the suicide
bombings in Tel Aviv Jan. 5
were horrific.
The terrorists, members of the Al-
Aqsa Martyr's Brigade (a wing of Yasser
Arafat's Fatah organization), positioned
themselves at opposite ends of a busy
street and blew themselves up 30 sec-
onds apart. That was to guarantee the
maximum number of casualties — as
terrified pedestrians fled the first explo-
sion, many ran directly toward the
bomber waiting to set off the second.
The attack murdered 22 civilians
and wounded more than 100, many of
whom will be maimed for life: The
bombs were packed with nails and
metal shards so that shrapnel would
shred skin and muscle, leaving sur-
vivors with agonizing internal injuries
or grotesque disfigurement.
It was the third worst terror attack in
Israel in the past quarter-century, and
the Palestinian Authority's initial reac-


Jeff Jacoby is a columnist for the Boston
Globe. This copyrighted column first
appeared in the Jan. 9 edition. His
e-mail address is jacoby@globe.com

tion was to arrest the Al Jazeera corre-
spondent who first reported that Fatah
was involved.
Then Arafat's spokesman issued a
statement in English expressing "total
condemnation of these terrorist attacks
against Israeli civilians."
But at about the same time, the Fatah
Web site posted another statement —
in Arabic — celebrating the attacks:
"With faith in the calling of holy
jihad," it said, "two suicide attackers ...
succeeded this evening to infiltrate the
Zionist roadblocks and to enter the
heart of ... Tel Aviv and carried out
two consecutive suicide attacks ...
These suicide attacks caused a large
number of fatalities and casualties in
the center of the Zionist occupation of
our land. We swear before our people
that additional suicide operations will
Note the description of Tel Aviv, a
city founded by Jews in 1909 and laid
out on the empty sand dunes north of
Jaffa: "the center of the Zionist occupa-
tion." To Fatah — which is to say, to
Arafat and the Palestinian leadership
— the borders of the "occupation" are
not those of Gaza or the West Bank.
They are the borders of Israel.

Occupied Territories
paid. In the 1970s, the PLO's
hijackings and mass-murders
That is a view with which
won it international recogni-
much of Arab opinion con-
tion and attention. The may-
curs. ArabicNews.com for
of the first intifada
example, datelined its story on
yielded the Oslo
the Tel Aviv attack "Palestine-
agreement, which legitimized
Israel," and reported that the
the PLO and gave Arafat and
bombings had killed "23 Israeli
his lieutenants a dictatorship
settlers." This despite the fact
in Gaza and the West Bank.
that none of the dead were res-
The stepped-up terrorism of
idents of the settlements.
Oslo years — the years of
Nearly one-third, in fact,
misnamed "peace
weren't Israeli at all. They were
process" — culminated in former
non-Jewish guest workers from
Prime Minister Ehud Barak's astonish-
Europe, China and Africa.
ing offer of full sovereignty, disman-
Israel reacted to the Jan. 5 slaughter
tled settlements and shared control of
not with a devastating military assault
Jerusalem. The bloodshed inflicted by
on Palestinian positions but with mere
Hezbollah led to Israel's unilateral
gestures: Combat helicopters fired on a
retreat from southern Lebanon.
weapons factory in Gaza, Palestinian
It is no wonder that so many
delegates were barred from traveling to
Palestinians believe that terror and vio-
a conference in London and some West
lence will eventually lead to the end of
Bank colleges were temporarily closed.
Israel and the creation of a 23rd Arab
But mere gestures are not going to
state. The wonder is that Israel doesn't use
wipe out terrorism, nor are they going
its tremendous military power to disabuse
to turn Palestinian hearts and minds
them of that belief once and for all.
against the terrorists. Mere gestures
In fairness, it must be said that Israel
can only feed Palestinian contempt for
is not entirely free to act in its own
Israeli weakness and reinforce the con-
best interest. It is under intense pres-
viction that violence pays.
JACOBY on page 36
And for years now, violence has

Europe Vs. America?


kings looked so clear in the
immediate aftermath of 9-11,
when the forces of civilization
stood on one side and the
barbarians on the other.
The very evening after the attack,
President Bush announced that
'America and our friends and allies join
with all those who want peace and secu-
rity in the world, and we stand together
to win the war against terrorism."
The next day — for the first time in
their 52-year history — members of
the North Atlantic Treaty Organization
(NATO) invoked the organization's
mutual assistance clause and declared
the assault on the United States to be
"an attack against them all."
That was then. Sixteen months later,
the Bush administration finds itself at
odds with many of those "friends and
allies," and even with a substantial
number of Americans. On the
anniversary of Sept. 11, when
Secretary of State Colin Powell told a


Daniel Pipes is director of the Middle
East Forum. His e-mail address is


United Nations audience that "we're
Europeans — many waving
plus its emphasis on free mar-
all in this together," his words had
Palestinian flags and sporting T-
kets and limited government.
These two outliers define the
come to sound pretty hollow.
shirt images of Che Guevara,
To some extent, this lack of unity
Stalin and Mao Tse-Tong —
results from the inevitable relaxing of
Then — and this is where
marched to denounce the possi-
the guard when more than a year goes
bility that the United States will
Sanes' analysis gets interesting
liberate the Iraqi people."
— there is Europe's offering of
by without either major successes
bureaucratic leftism (again, my
against terrorism or mega-incidents of
terrorism (though several were near-
term), which sits somewhere
Varied Outlooks
between. Sanes notes how
misses, especially in New Delhi and
Tel Aviv; and attacks in Bali and
Palestinian flags and images of
European model shares
Sp ecial
Moscow each led to over 100 deaths).
Stalin? What gives?
Corn mentary some features with the
One explanation for this hos-
American (its dependence on
But the dissent also stems from more
the free market to create
profound differences in outlook. Public
tility comes in an insightful arti-
cle published last week by the
wealth) and some with the militant
opinion polls unanimously point to a
Islamic (its dependence on strong gov-
substantial leap in anti-Americanism. A
American analyst Ken Sanes in Hong
ernments to achieve its goals).
massive Pew Global Attitudes poll
Kong's Asia Times Online. Sanes argues
The geographic divisions are, of
that there are not two, but three "super-
released last month, for instance, found
course, imperfect, there being plenty
increasingly negative views of the United systems" with global aspirations and
between them, they shape much of the
of statist liberals in the United States
States in over two-thirds of the 27 coun-
and at least some individualistic liberal
planet's politics.
tries it surveyed. It's become tediously
types in Europe (and Islamists are
commonplace to hear how Americans
One of those super-systems, of
found in both places).
course, is militant Islam, with its dour
"deserved what they got" on 9-11.
Sanes' originality lies in taking the
In Europe, the signs of antipathy are
• message of extremism, intolerance,
Euro-American differences and present-
resentment, cruelty, aggression and
sometimes startling: A book claiming
ing them not as two variants of one
that bin Laden attacked the World Trade totalitarian control. Then there is the
American model of (what I term) indi-
super-system but as two distinct super-
Center as part of a U.S. government
systems. They are not two dialects of one
conspiracy shot to the top of the best-
vidualistic liberalism — with its
emphasis on the individualistic and
seller lists in France. In Florence, Italy,
PIPES on page 36
National Review reports, "300,000
even hedonistic "pursuit of happiness,"



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