Michael Widlanski: ARAFAT'S STATE MEDIA LAUD JERUSALEM AND NETANYA ATTACKS
AS 'HEROIC MARTYRDOM OPERATIONS'
Sunday, March 10, 2002
Yasser Arafat's state-run radio station gave unstinting praise Sunday
morning (March 10) to two Palestinian terror attacks on Israelis Saturday
night in which 13 Israeli civilians were murdered and more than 100 were
It was the clearest sign that the Arafat regime has moved to total public
support for terror attacks on Israelis.
"The 'Brigades of the Martyrs of Al-Aqsa' and the 'Brigades of Izza al-Din
al-Qassam' take credit for the two heroic martyrdom operations," said Voice
of Palestine state radio.
It was referring to last night's attacks on a restaurant in the heart of
Jerusalem and a tourist hotel in Netanya.
Voice of Palestine radio did not condemn or even hint at criticizing the
attacks. In fact, it has made a point of playing joyous songs after attacks
on Israelis--whether committed by Arafat's Fatah Tanzeem militia or by the
Islamic terror organization known as HAMAS.
"The Sharon-ite terror against our people continues," declared the Voice of
Palestine radio anchorman Nizar al-Gul as he opened the Sunday news
programming, which described the Israeli bombing of Arafat's empty Gaza
headquarters as "a cowardly act."
Both the style and the content of Palestinian state media message has
changed dramatically in recent weeks, and even the background music on the
state radio and television has become suffused with songs calling for
"martyrdom in Jerusalem" and "blood for our land."
The Israeli government is regularly described as "the Occupation Government"
and the Israeli army is habitually labeled "the zionist army."
But the radio published a joint statement from the Palestinian Authority and
the "Islamic forces" which "condemned the crimes of the (Israeli)
Indeed, Arafat and HAMAS seem to have joined forces for all intents and
purposes, and Arafat's state radio and television now give "equal time" to
"plugs" for HAMAS and Fatah "amaliyat" (the Arabic euphemism "operations"
used to describe terror attacks)
"The general strike today will include all areas of life and it has been
called by the (Palestinian) National Authority (Arafat's PA), by the
national forces (Arafat's Fatah Tanzeem) and by the Islamic Forces (HAMAS
and Islamic Jihad) to protest the crimes of the Occupation," said al Ghul.
"The strike will also stretch into the Green Line (the code-word used
instead of saying 'Israel')," the anchorman said, calling for "solidarity"
by Israeli Arab against the Israeli government.
© 2002 Michael Widlanski
Michael Widlanski is senior analyst at The Media Line and lecturer at The
Rothberg School of the Hebrew University. Fuller versions of his articles
are available at www.themedialine.org