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Thursday, February 11, 2010
Weekly Commentary: The message in Palestinian condemnation of terror on grounds of efficacy

Weekly Commentary: The message in Palestinian condemnation of terror on
grounds of efficacy

Dr. Aaron Lerner Date: 11 February, 2010

Compare and contrast:

"A loathsome, criminal act of murder was committed today at a site holy to
both Jews and Arabs in Hebron.The Prime Minister and Defense Minister,
government ministers and citizens of the State of Israel severely condemn
this terrible murder of innocent people, which occurred during Ramadan
prayer services."
Statement by Prime Minister Rabin on the Murders in Hebron, 25 February
1994.

'This incident condemned by us, which is incompatible with the Palestinian
national interests, and with the efforts of the Palestinian National
Authority, as well as with the commitments they have undertaken.. violence
that has been proven to cause damage to the higher interests of our people."
Palestinian Prime Minister Dr. Salam Fayyad 10 February 2010

The differences are hardly subtle.

When an Israeli prime minister condemns an attack by a Jew against
Palestinians he condemns it because it is in and of itself a "loathsome,
criminal act."

When a Palestinian prime minister condemns an attack by a Palestinian
against an Israeli, he condemns it because it is "incompatible with the
Palestinian national interests."

And this isn't the first time.

In point of fact, official Palestinian condemnations of terror against
Israelis consistently condemn it on the basis of its efficacy (does not
serve interests) rather than because it is simply wrong.

Look back at the details of the charges that PA prosecutors have filed
against the few Palestinian terrorists that they jailed (mostly in order to
protect them from Israeli justice) and - that's right - they weren't
sentenced for murdering Israelis but instead for acting "against Palestinian
interests".

This isn't just a technical matter.

It goes to the very heart of the nature of how the Palestinian leadership
relates to Israel.

And it should serve as an important warning for policy makers.

If the reason it is wrong to murder Israelis today is that it doesn't serve
Palestinian interests and not that it is simply wrong to murder Israelis
then what happens if circumstances are such that it does serve Palestinian
interests to murder Israelis?

And given that this is the case, what restrictions are necessary for the
arming, training, etc. of Palestinian security forces?

Dr. Aaron Lerner, Director IMRA (Independent Media Review & Analysis)
(Mail POB 982 Kfar Sava)
Tel 972-9-7604719/Fax 972-3-7255730
INTERNET ADDRESS: imra@netvision.net.il
Website: http://www.imra.org.il

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