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Gaza war blowback? Palestinian stabs 13 on Tel Aviv bus.

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Shortly before 8am this morning a Palestinian man from the West Bank town of Tulkarem stabbed 13 passengers on a Tel Aviv bus seriously injuring four, according to Israeli police spokesperson Inspector Micky Rosenfeld. According to YNet News, the attacker Hamza Matrouk, 23, told police interrogators he was motivated by Israel’s 50-day summer war in Gaza and tensions at the al-Aqsa Mosque compound where right-wing Israeli politicians have have taken groups of religious-nationalists throughout the fall.

While the morning rush hour attack was in progress, three Israeli prison guards intervened. They saw the incident from their vehicle, which was directly behind the bus. According to a CCTV footage published by Israel’s Channel 10, one of the guards shot the assailant in the leg as he fled on foot while stabbing bus passengers who had rushed to the street.

After his arrest, Matrouk was taken to Wolfson Medical Center in Jerusalem, reported YNet News, where he is in police custody. Matrouk will be detained for the next 90 hours before being transferred to the West Bank’s military court system. Rosenfeld said “he came in from Tulkarem this morning with intentions to carry out a terrorist attack.” Haaretz reported Matrouk boarded the bus at Tel Aviv’s Central Bus Station. The knife he used was brought with him from the West Bank and Matrouk managed to sneak it past security officers posted out front of the bus station.

Hamza Matrouk, detained after stabbing 13 on a Tel Aviv bus on the morning of January 21, 2015. (Photo: YNet News)

Hamza Matrouk, detained after stabbing 13 on a Tel Aviv bus on the morning of January 21, 2015. (Photo: YNet News)

 

According to Reuters, bus driver Herzl Biton, 55, told his dispatcher who was called during the attack, “Save me. I have been seriously injured, stabbed all over my body. He has stabbed my passengers … If anything happens to me, look after my children.” The driver was then transported to Tel Aviv Ichilov hosptial with five others who were seriously injured and 13 who were treated for shock. Biton underwent surgery this morning on his liver, which was wounded by the attacker. One other was also operated on for serious injuries. They both are still in critical condition, according to a spokesperson for the Ichilov hospital.

(Video via Israeli police spokesperson Luba Samri)

No Palestinian political faction has claimed the attack. It is unknown if it was an ordered operation, or a “lone wolf” assault, similar to another stabbing of two police officers carried out by a Palestinian at a train station in Tel Aviv two months ago.

However, Israeli officials have been quick to place blame on the Palestinian Authority head Mahmoud Abbas. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu even mentioned the Palestinians joining the International Criminal Court (ICC) as “incitement” in his condemnation released by his office this morning: “The terrorist attack in Tel Aviv is the direct result of the poisonous incitement being disseminated by the Palestinian Authority against the Jews and their state. This same terrorism is trying to attack us in Paris, Brussels and everywhere.”

“It is Hamas – Abu Mazen’s partners in a unity government – that hastened to commend this attack. This is the same Hamas that announced it will sue Israel at the International Criminal Court in the Hague. Abu Mazen is responsible for both the incitement and the dangerous move at the ICC in theHague,” he added.

Economic Minister Naftali Bennett also said, “Abbas incites day and night against the Jews on television, when he glofiries and gives cash prizes to murderers of Jews,” reported Haaretz’s Barak Ravid, “he makes himself the dealer of knives, and the terrorists are just his agents.”

Extending blame to Palestinian citizens of Israel and other member of the Israeli government, Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said, “those behind the Tel Aviv attack stand behind Rahat riots and Jerusalem attacks: Abu Mazen [Mahmoud Abbas], [Ismail] Haniyeh, Raed Saleh, Haneen Zoabi, Ahmed Tibi and their partners. It’s all part of the same process of undermining Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish state,” continuing, “It doesn’t matter to them if it’s Judea and Samaria, the Negev, the Galilee, Tel Aviv or Jerusalem – it is all part of the same branch which aims to eliminate the Jewish state.”

Allison Deger

Allison Deger is the Assistant Editor of Mondoweiss.net. Follow her on twitter at @allissoncd.

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88 Responses

  1. CloakAndDagger on January 21, 2015, 10:23 am

    Under prolonged and extreme duress, all men can snap. Despair and hopelessness, and the continued denial of justice, can have unpredictable results on the human psyche. Radicalization is a case of nature versus nurture.

    Of course, the people on the bus did not deserve to die and are also innocent victims.

    • Maximus Decimus Meridius on January 21, 2015, 10:49 am

      To the best of my knowledge, nobody on the bus died. Though given the media attention, contrasted to the silence when Palestinians are killed on an almost daily basis, you’d be forgiven for thinking mass slaughter had taken place.

      • Blownaway on January 21, 2015, 10:53 am

        Fortunately no one died from terrorism in the latest attack. However Palestinian children continue to die from Israels terroristic attack of last summer

      • CloakAndDagger on January 21, 2015, 10:58 am

        To the best of my knowledge, nobody on the bus died

        I should have said: “Of course, the people on the bus did not deserve to be stabbed…”

      • Marnie on January 21, 2015, 12:17 pm

        Exactly MDM. Palestinian lives just aren’t so important, very expendable. Also the strange disconnect between civilians and soldiers. As you noted, almost all Israelis have been or are soldiers. Abbas doesn’t have an army. I would think it would be one of the most difficult things to try to wrap your head around, that all contact with Israelis has to be traumatizing. They don’t even have to be in uniform, its just the knowledge that at one time every single one was in a uniform and who is their common enemy? Men, women and children, all civilians. I can’t understand how seemingly so many Israelis apparently have no trouble with this thinking at all, and then completely fall to pieces when something like this happens, like they never could have seen it coming? It brings to my mind Nat Turner’s revolt and how shocked white americans were, particularly southern, that “slaves” would take up arms against them. They never saw that coming either. What is it with the master race anyhow? Are they so racist that they can’t even imagine the people they have oppressed, stolen from and murdered for decades might not like them too much?

      • Maximus Decimus Meridius on January 21, 2015, 1:03 pm

        @Marnie

        It’s called brainwashing. Or maybe ziowashing.

      • Kris on January 22, 2015, 6:25 pm

        @ Marnie: “It brings to my mind Nat Turner’s revolt and how shocked white americans were, particularly southern, that “slaves” would take up arms against them. They never saw that coming either. What is it with the master race anyhow? Are they so racist that they can’t even imagine the people they have oppressed, stolen from and murdered for decades might not like them too much? ”

        Very well said!

    • eGuard on January 22, 2015, 5:11 am

      Under prolonged and extreme duress, all men can snap.

      It is a compliment to the Palestinian People that it takes this long. What a strength to endure such a lifetime violent suppression and keep composure.

    • light2014 on January 22, 2015, 6:38 pm

      “Despair and hopelessness” …human psyche .

      When Anwar Sadat transformed his demeanor from violent, self righteous, poisonous hatred of Israel ,to open hearted ,we are all fallible, generosity he got a hero’s welcome in Israel and around the world . ( He was assassinated several years later by the Muslim Brotherhood).
      And Israel returned to Egypt all the territories that Egypt wanted. Those Palestinian Arabs who heeded the advice of the Mufti in the 1920’s still seethe with his uncompromising hatred today. But not all Arabs viewed the Jews as a curse. Concerning Emir Faisal :
      On 23 March 1918, in Al Qibla, the daily newspaper of Mecca, [Faisal] attested that Palestine was “a sacred and beloved homeland of its original sons,” the Jews; “the return of these exiles to their homeland will prove materially and spiritually an experimental school for their [Arab] brethren.” He called on the Arab population in Palestine to welcome the Jews as brethren and cooperate with them for the common welfare.[8]
      Be a radically generous( in spite of your sense of being desperately in need) lover and you’ll bowl Israel over.
      Be a mensch not a knife. That’s the way to defeat Israel and Israel will celebrate your victory
      over them with you.

      • RoHa on January 22, 2015, 10:48 pm

        So if the Palestinians are “radically generous” the Israelis will give back all of Palestine? O.K., clearly offering 78% of the country wasn’t generous enough. What do they have to do to show the right level of generosity ?

        “…welcome the Jews as brethren and cooperate with them for the common welfare”

        Sounds good, but then and now the Jews showed and show no interest in being brethren, and even less in the common welfare.

  2. oldgeezer on January 21, 2015, 10:34 am

    Attacking civilians is just not on or justified. There is no doubt that this individual will feel the full weight of Israeli law and will pay a heavy price for his actions. As he should.

    In the meantime the daily killings and lawlessness against Palestinians will go unabated and without punishment. The extent of these crimes as shown by Kate’s frequent news summaries.

    No doubt this will be headlines around the world while Palestinians (many of them children) will go to their graves unnoticed.

    • Maximus Decimus Meridius on January 21, 2015, 10:52 am

      ”Attacking civilians is just not on or justified. ”

      Just think of it the Israeli way for a moment. Many if not most of the people on that bus had served in the terrorist IDF, so therefore are not really civilians. Most of them have sheltered IDF terrorists in their homes. The driver was likely an IDF veteran.The bus may well have been travelling close to the IDF HQ which is placed in the centre of the city, forcing residents to act as human shields. Therefore it was a legitimate target.

      You see? It’s really not hard to justify attacks on civilians. You just need to think like an Israeli.

      • amigo on January 21, 2015, 11:26 am

        “You see? It’s really not hard to justify attacks on civilians. You just need to think like an Israeli. ” MDM

        I was trying to find a post from some years back which described Jewish terrorists as victims of Palestinian terror so not responsible for their actions.Jewish terrorists go insane from their suffering.Palestinians are terrorists no matter what pain they are served .

        I came across the following gem from Johnathan S Tobin at the commentary.It is short but worth reading albeit slightly OT.Read the three comments.

        https://www.commentarymagazine.com/2014/11/20/no-moral-equivalence-for-synagogue-terror/

      • a blah chick on January 21, 2015, 11:45 am

        If you just apply the Dersh’s “Continuum of Civilianality” it is perfectly justified.

      • Marnie on January 21, 2015, 11:58 am

        I thought this was bizarre on a couple fronts. First being that this man was able to bring a knife with him from the West Bank unnoticed. Secondly, that they shot him in the leg. Why after all this time, after all the recent murders of innocent teenagers, this man, who stabbed multiple people multiple times, seriously injuring 4, was shot in the leg? My point isn’t that he should have been murdered, my question is why did they hold back on this guy? It doesn’t make any sense to me, when they’ve killed Palestinian children, killed a Bedouin at a funeral, just in the last week and this guy they shot to wound?

      • annie on January 21, 2015, 1:22 pm

        maybe because of the choice of the prison guard who shot him. not everyone in israel is a cold blooded killer. perhaps the shooter did not feel threatened under the circumstances, choosing not to kill someone is natural for most people.

      • American on January 21, 2015, 1:26 pm

        ” my question is why did they hold back on this guy? It doesn’t make any sense to me, when they’ve killed Palestinian children, killed a Bedouin at a funeral, just in the last week and this guy they shot to wound? – marnie

        Probably becuase they werent sure if he was a Palestine or just a Israeli who had started a fight with someone on the bus.

      • Mooser on January 21, 2015, 1:51 pm

        “maybe because of the choice”

        It occurs to me, strictly as a thought, that in an situation where written orders and policies can end up being criminal evidence, a lot must be left to individual initiative and on-scene decisions.

      • Xpat on January 21, 2015, 8:14 pm

        Marnie – “my question is why did they hold back on this guy? ”
        I was hoping someone would point this out. Could be all sorts of reasons. Like they aimed at his head but missed. I prefer that prison guards aren’t part of the anti-terror forces. Had it been the army or the anti-terrorist police who roam around Israel’s cities on motorbikes, is likely he would have been assassinated.

      • Memphis on January 22, 2015, 12:19 am

        maybe he was just a bad shot and missed.

      • annie on January 29, 2015, 5:10 am

        in an situation where written orders and policies can end up being criminal evidence, a lot must be left to individual initiative and on-scene decisions.

        technically he wasn’t on duty, he was acting as a civilian as i recall. he acted, he choose “on-scene decisions” not to kill. thank goodness no one died in this attack.

    • ziusudra on January 22, 2015, 4:16 am

      Greetings oldgeezer,
      …in the meantime the daily killings & lawlessness against Palestinians will go unabated….

      That’s the price the Falesteeni have to pay because:

      ….Avi Dearman: It’s all part of the same process of undermining Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish State…….
      ziusudra

  3. eljay on January 21, 2015, 11:00 am

    I unequivocally condemn the attack. The assailant must be held accountable for his actions.

    • jon s on January 22, 2015, 5:41 am

      Marnie, the information I heard was that he purchased the knife in Israel after crossing over.

      • Mooser on January 22, 2015, 5:58 pm

        “Marnie, the information I heard was that he purchased the knife in Israel after crossing over.”

        But that leaves another mystery! Namely, where the heck did you get any credibility, “Jon s”?

    • bilal a on January 22, 2015, 8:04 am

      Some of the Lost are still living

      We thought it was a great idea. As a family, we hadn’t been particularly religious, but we wanted our daughter to learn more about her heritage. For a while she’d been dating a non-Jewish boy, and we hoped this class would strengthen her commitment to raising a Jewish family.

      Once in Israel, our conversations grew stranger and shorter. There were months when I could not get in touch with her. Messages and emails went unanswered.

      When Jenny finally returned home, nine months later, she was nearly unrecognizable. Gone was every glimmer of cheer from her personality, every sign of the affection she had once had for us. Still, she continued to live in our home. We bought her a car and gave her a credit card for her daily needs. Days would pass and I wouldn’t see her. She’d sneak in and out, eat her kosher food alone in her room.
      ..
      My rabbi says I need to get away from you,” she said. “‘Your parents are torturing you,’ he says.”

      What kind of people teach that in order to have a meaningful life, you must shun those who love you most? I wondered.

      http://www.kveller.com/how-i-lost-my-daughter-to-religious-fundamentalism/

  4. jenin on January 21, 2015, 11:29 am

    this is terrible and I feel very bad for the bus driver and his family, as well as the others injured in this attack.

    of course I can’t help thinking about the fact that an equivalent attack on Palestinians by Israelis would not be receiving such attention; about the fact that this young man was probably driven by desperation of living under a military occupation; about the fact that if he were an Israeli, he would get a fair trial but in the military court system of the occupation he will not; and about the fact that Netanyahu shamelessly uses an unfortunate incident like this to score political points. Of course no one –at least in the mainstream media– will ridicule Netanyahu’s so-called logic, but it is absolutely ridiculous to try to blame this on Hamas or Abbas; equally ridiculous that Netanyahu is incapable of looking at how his own government is responsible for this tragedy by creating a situation where people are desperate enough to carry out these actions (not that the young man shouldn’t be held criminally responsible — through trial in a fair justice system). But Netanyahu chooses to blame anti-semitism, not only because it’s easy, but because it suits his political purposes. He is a very sick man.

  5. a blah chick on January 21, 2015, 11:42 am

    I think it would be interesting what would have happened had be been killed by any of the passengers. Would they have been held accountable like those guys who killed Zada?

    Also does Abbas know that he is responsible for the behavior of ALL Palestinians, even the ones under Israeli control? How’s he suppose to do that?

    • Xpat on January 21, 2015, 8:17 pm

      Israel sees the Palestinian Authority as the corollary of the Jewish State. Just as Israel is not the state of all Israelis but sees itself (in some regards) as the state of all Jews so the PA is the state of all Palestinians.

  6. German Lefty on January 21, 2015, 11:48 am

    But Israel is the safest place for Jews, right?
    Hopefully, there were no anti-Zionists among the victims.

    • Xpat on January 21, 2015, 8:19 pm

      GL –
      Shhhh. You aren’t supposed to be thinking that right now. Now it’s time to talk about murderous Palestinians who can never be trusted no matter what we do. It’s only when Jews are killed in Europe that we bring your point up.
      Some people will never learn….

    • Laurent Weppe on January 22, 2015, 8:32 am

      Well, the knifing happened in public transports, therefore the victims were most certainly plebeian Jews, therefore they are irrelevant as far as israeli patricians are concerned: never forget the first rule of tribalism: class trumps everything.

  7. Kay24 on January 21, 2015, 11:50 am

    This is not a good situation, although one thing is clear, there are many, many, angry Palestinians, who will retaliate in many ways. Time Israel realized that there is a message behind these attacks, and that giving these people their basic rights, and stop stealing their lands and resources, will help ease this unending situation.

    Meanwhile, those who aid and give unwavering support to the occupier, will be giving many standing ovations, and kissing Bibi’s buttons, soon at the Capitol Hill. Boehner has given dear Chickenshit yet another invitation to speak there. They are certainly giving him that boost, to make sure he gets elected. I don’t think any other leader has got invited, and applauded, this much. Even President Obama does not get so many standing O’s. If I had not known better, I would have thought Beebs is the real President of the US!!

    http://www.nbcnews.com/politics/first-read/boehner-invites-netanyahu-address-congress-february-n290351

    • Marnie on January 21, 2015, 12:05 pm

      Kay24 – I can’t believe it. The leader of an apartheid state, invited to speak at the Capitol in order to push the US into another war in the Middle East? This is a slap in the face of the President of the US and a slap in the face of American citizens. Boehner needs to be fired. Another round of morning news programs for Netanyahu. His head is going to explode with all the adoration. “I’m king of the world emahleh!” I never thought I’d see anything like this.

      • Kay24 on January 22, 2015, 1:27 am

        It is very disappointing Marnie, especially when the President just spoke to them hours before, during the SOTU speech, and asked them not to impose more sanctions on Iran, at this time.

        I have never seen such arrogance like this. They are weasels that show more respect for a war criminal like Bibi, and pretend to be Americans. This is going against their own President and country.

    • jenin on January 21, 2015, 1:31 pm

      Kay24–sadly, most Israelis won’t realize there’s a message behind the attacks, but continue to blame it on antisemitism because they seem to prefer feeling victimized to addressing the reasons people might be driven to violent behavior. Not so different than the Americans, or the Europeans. Their sick prime minister won’t help with this either, screaming antisemitism at the first opportunity.

      • Kay24 on January 22, 2015, 1:29 am

        They must be stupid if they cannot realize why these poor people have to keep retaliating and showing their anger at being under siege for so long, but the are devious enough to keep the charade going – it serves their purpose to keep the status quo going, acting the victim, and keep making excuses to keep taking more from the true victims.

      • jenin on January 22, 2015, 11:48 am

        Kaye–maybe stupid; more likely brainwashed. It’s a huge part of the mentality in Israel–that they are the victims, no matter what their government is doing. That is one thing that I really learned this past summer trying to debate Israel defenders–they grow up from day 1 being taught that the world hates them and everyone is trying to kill them.

    • John Fearey on January 23, 2015, 7:35 pm

      Re: “anger” I spent a mere six days visiting East Jerusalem and I was angry…furiously so. But I noticed that the Palestinians I spoke with including one man who had been jailed 140 times by the Israelis (never for violence) and another who spent 13 years in jail for attacking a bulldozer that had knocked his farm down and had been tortured, did not express anger so much as an intense resolve not to be pushed out by the Israeli violence and everyday harassment which , as was pointed out to me, they suffer “every hour of every day” and which I couldn’t have withstood for a week. I got to come home to my peaceable kingdom here in Connecticut and will only recall what I heard from a very safe distance. I wasn’t over there but three days before I had a fantasy (that’s “fantasy” for any FBI, NSA or IDF types who might be trolling the internet) about grabbing a particularly nasty looking little machine gun from a particularly thuggish, albeit physically unimposing armed guard at the settlement wherein lies a memorial to the mass murderer Baruch Goldstein (tomb of the patriarchs), and shoving it down his throat. And I’m hardly the violent type. I wonder, when an entire people are subjugated by another people, is it possible to talk about “innocent civilians” amongst the subjugators. After I calmed down, though, I just felt sad and depressed…for civilians on both sides. What a wretched mess, with only more violence to come.

      • just on January 23, 2015, 7:51 pm

        That “intense resolve” is something to behold, alright.

        A testament to the ‘rightness’ of their cause, and the reason that anyone with a shred of humanity should work for their liberation in their own lands, or at least not stand in the way.

  8. American on January 21, 2015, 1:41 pm

    The Israel operational theory has always been that if they spill enough Palestine blood they can force them to say uncle and leave Palestine.
    Maybe some Palestines are adopting the same theory of spilling enough Jewish blood to make them say uncle.
    Maybe they are even adopting the Israeli mo of ‘provoking’ attacks against them.
    Maybe they hope to provoke the Israelis into a full blown attempt at genociding Palestine–Maybe hoping at that point the world will finally step in to prevent it and concrete change will happen.
    Thats a lot of maybes without much past evidence to back that hope up —–but desperate times lead to desperate measures by desperate people.

    • seafoid on January 21, 2015, 4:35 pm

      Big deal if Israelis get stabbed- do they honestly expect security after last summer’s savagery that had over 90% approval ? The occupation is now on balance sheet. Kids freeze to death in Gaza and Israelis expect life in their bubble to proceed as normal . Why ?

      • just on January 21, 2015, 5:01 pm

        there is that. thanks, seafoid.

    • Bornajoo on January 21, 2015, 5:47 pm

      @American
      “but desperate times lead to desperate measures by desperate people”

      Absolutely.

  9. TW on January 21, 2015, 1:54 pm

    After todays attack in Tel Aviv, France urges all jews to come back home…

    • eljay on January 21, 2015, 3:07 pm

      >> TW: After todays attack in Tel Aviv, France urges all jews to come back home…

      Jewish French citizens, yes. It’s simply not safe in Israel, what with all those Aye-rabs and Mooslims and Hamases everywhere, and the perpetual threat of being wiped off the map / pushed into the sea.

    • ritzl on January 21, 2015, 3:23 pm

      Ouch! :))

  10. just on January 21, 2015, 3:48 pm

    Of course it’s blowback~ blowback from growing up under a violent and cruel Occupation, 3 slaughters in Gaza, no freedom of movement, parents living apart, no hope, no quiet, no nothing… he’s been suffering from PTSD since his first memory of misery/violence/loss, and it’s been compounded ever since. A relentless misery.

    “Tel Aviv bus terrorist says he was motivated by Gaza War, Temple Mount, martyrdom”

    http://www.haaretz.com/news/diplomacy-defense/.premium-1.638284

    So sad.

    Hope that the injured victims do well, too.

  11. wondering jew on January 21, 2015, 5:39 pm

    Blowback is such a namby pamby modern word. Why not call it revenge?

    • tree on January 21, 2015, 5:48 pm
    • tree on January 21, 2015, 5:50 pm

      Meaning of “blowback”:

      2. US

      the unintended adverse results of a political action or situation.

      It isn’t “namby-pamby”; its the accurate word in this case.

      Yet another thing you don’t know but don’t mind talking about regardless?

      • just on January 21, 2015, 6:02 pm

        +1 !

        (yonah has a very transparent agenda though)

    • eljay on January 21, 2015, 6:19 pm

      >> y.f.: Blowback is such a namby pamby modern word. Why not call it revenge?

      Simple: Blowback and revenge have different meanings.

      Merriam-Webster.com:
      – Blowback: an unforeseen and unwanted effect, result, or set of repercussions
      – Revenge: to avenge (as oneself) usually by retaliating in kind or degree; to inflict injury in return for <revenge an insult>

    • Mooser on January 21, 2015, 7:43 pm

      “Blowback is such a namby pamby modern word. Why not call it revenge?” Yonah

      Yonah, speaking of “revenge”, remember what a Mother said, to her delicate son, when he was drafted into the Czar’s army, and headed for the Crimea. She told him:

      “Kill a Turk, then rest, kill another Turk, then rest and eat, you’ve got to keep up your strength!”
      “But Mamila what if the Turk tries to kill me?”
      “Kill you? But why should he want to? What have the Jews ever done to him?”

      • jon s on January 22, 2015, 5:32 am
      • amigo on January 22, 2015, 4:36 pm

        Mooser,
        Whoa, that was my comment:” jon s

        To which mooser replied!!.

        “Exactly, “Jon s”, that is indeed the punchline. You can’t go out and kill people and then hide behind being a Jew. That’s the joke. Glad you got it”

        jon s , you would have done better to have kept that to yourself.

      • Mooser on January 22, 2015, 6:00 pm

        Thanks, amigo. Thank you.

      • Mooser on January 23, 2015, 3:02 pm

        “Kill a Turk, then rest”

        That joke was used as a chapter heading and text in “How I Stopped Being a Jew” by Shlomo Sand.

  12. just on January 22, 2015, 12:02 am

    Amira Hass gets it:

    “Most Palestinians restrain themselves despite Israel’s plunder

    Unlike a few individuals, they channel their wrath and loathing into nonviolent action like the BDS and ICC movements.

    Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman are deceiving the Israeli public, as usual. There is no need for “incitement” by Palestinian Authority officials or Israeli-Arab public figures to make a young Palestinian man stab a dozen or so people in a frenzy.

    There is no need for outside elements to encourage a young Palestinian man to carry out a revenge campaign at the risk of being killed or deprived of his freedom for many years. Whatever the life circumstances of Hamza Mohammed Hasan Matrouk, the anger, loathing and desire for revenge seething within him are all his.

    Nor is there a need for a particular “atmosphere.” The “atmosphere” was there all the time, from the moment Matrouk was born in the Tul Karm refugee camp, and even before. Its creators: the Israel Defense Forces, the Civil Administration, the Shin Bet security service, the Defense Ministry, the settlements and their inhabitants, the IDF’s watchtowers, the barbed-wire fences.

    “Atmosphere” is a misleading word. This is reality, a reality that Israeli Jews refuse to acknowledge even though it’s of their own making. After all, in democratic elections they voted the policy-makers in, and if they had wanted, they could have learned about the lives of non-Jews under the Israeli regime.

    If there is incitement, this is its source: the supremacy of a nation convinced it has the right to interfere in and sabotage the life of the inferior Palestinian nation — its future, past, economy, money, assets and family and social relationships.

    The amazing thing for which Israelis should give thanks is that the overwhelming majority of Palestinians do not harbor the intention of harming every Israeli they come across. The overwhelming majority of Palestinians constantly restrain themselves so as not to explode with wrath at the colossal arrogance and lord-of-the-manor attitude of Israelis they face daily. The great majority of Palestinians keep themselves from avenging the plunder that has accompanied Israeli rule since its inception and the long list of Palestinians killed.

    Israelis owe thanks to the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement and the Palestinian decision to join the International Criminal Court. Both initiatives channel the wrath and loathing common to all Palestinians into civil and legal action — nonviolent action, in striking contrast to the daily violence of the Israeli regime.

    Israelis also owe thanks to the activists who every week hold demonstrations in West Bank villages, and who, in contrast to Matrouk, do not target Israeli bus passengers. The targets of their marches, and sometimes of their stones, are the Israelis who are armed to the teeth and do not hesitate to shoot and kill civilians.

    Israelis should pray for the success of these unarmed paths of resistance. Instead of revenge, these paths develop political thinking and action. They are a recommendation to Israelis to open their eyes before it’s too late.”

    http://www.haaretz.com/opinion/.premium-1.638375?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter

    • Marnie on January 22, 2015, 1:16 am

      Just –
      That’s exactly what it is all about, every single paragraph. Thanks so much for this post.

      • just on January 22, 2015, 6:08 pm

        ;-)

  13. Memphis on January 22, 2015, 12:28 am

    I have to be honest. But I really don’t care about Israeli’s. And I could care less if they are attacked or killed. They support, and are apart of system that denies basic human rights to millions of people. Maybe when they respect the lives or others, I will feel some solemnity when they are attacked.

    if I feel this way, living 1000’s of miles away, imagine how a Palestinian feels who lives with it everyday and grew up with it. Sorry, don’t feel bad at all. Makes me think of what Malcolm X said, “chickens coming home to roost never made me sad; they alway made me glad.”

    • jenin on January 22, 2015, 12:29 pm

      I think the problem with statements like these is that they are based on the same sort of problematic generalizations Israelis make about Palestinians. Who knows who the people were on that bus. Maybe some of them do not support what the government is doing but think they will help more by living in Israel and trying to change from within than by leaving it. Even those who do support the system, most likely because they’ve been brainwashed, do they deserve to die for their beliefs, however despicable? What about the children who’ve never had the opportunity to form their own opinions? So while I understand where you’re coming from, I have to disagree…

      • Mooser on January 22, 2015, 6:10 pm

        I don’t think anybody, thank God, died, in this incident.

      • jenin on January 23, 2015, 9:00 am

        Mooser, you’re right. But he seemed to intend to kill by virtue of the injuries inflicted so I stand by my above comment regardless of whether actual death resulted

      • Mooser on January 23, 2015, 3:07 pm

        “Jenin Younes” I’m sorry, I wasn’t meaning to dispute, I guess what I’m thinking has something to do with how disarmed the Palestinians are. I come from a place where toddlers blast their Mom’s with automatic pistols in the Wal-mart if they don’t get their way.

  14. jon s on January 22, 2015, 5:38 am

    The bus driver, Herzl Bitton, is being praised for his bravery and presence-of- mind. While being attacked by the knife-weilding terrorist he tried to fight back, sprayed the terrorist with pepper spray and managed to open the doors. He probably saved lives.

    • Xpat on January 22, 2015, 9:24 am

      I’m more likely to be on a Tel Aviv bus than on the West Bank so this random violence is more dangerous to me personally than Israeli violence. Israelis have killed internationals and wounded other Israelis who have stood with Palestinians. And Palestinians have shown bravery in shielding non-Palestinians from Israeli violence. Ordinary people do brave things. They are victims of bigger systems.
      If Herzl Bitton is being praised as a hero, it’s fair to ask if he is also a soldier in the army enforcing the Occupation?

      • just on January 22, 2015, 9:51 am

        +1

    • Mooser on January 22, 2015, 6:04 pm

      Oh “Jon s”, we know about Israeli bus drivers! Veritable superman, with bomb-detector noses, and always alert to enforce Israeli law. Oh yes, we’ve even seen a few Rosa Parks moments.

    • Mooser on January 22, 2015, 6:08 pm

      “While being attacked by the knife-weilding (sic) terrorist”

      A “terrorist” with no guns, no bombs. Sure “Jon s”. Were all the passengers “properly attired”?

      • just on January 22, 2015, 6:32 pm

        Sheesh Mooser, don’t you know that anyone who is not Jewish who attacks a Jewish person is a ‘terrorist’ and anti-semite?

        otoh, when a horde of Jewish thugs hunt down and immolate a young Palestinian, the poor leader is ‘mentally disturbed’. when ‘settlers’ attack, it’s ho-hum. when the iof kills/murders, they were ‘threatened’…..etc.

      • Mooser on January 22, 2015, 7:20 pm

        Remember how verklemperer “Jon s” was when those Rabbis got shot in Israeli occupied territory? And this incident has an even more tragic aspect, in spite of nobody dieing.

      • just on January 22, 2015, 7:33 pm

        If he had even a soupçon of sympathy/empathy for the innumerable Palestinian victims of 24/7 Israeli terror, then I might be able to understand him a bit better.

        As it is……..

  15. jon s on January 23, 2015, 2:47 am

    On numerous occasions I’ve expressed my disgust for all terrorists, anyone who deliberately targets random innocent civilians, regardless of nationality, race, religion, ethnicity (of the victims and of the terrorists).

    It also doesn’t make any difference what weapon the terrorist is wielding (sorry for the typo, above). It could be a gun, a bomb, an airliner, anthrax…or a knife,

    “Those Rabbis got shot..” (also a Druze policeman) – it wasn’t in occupied territory.

    • Walid on January 23, 2015, 4:36 am

      “On numerous occasions I’ve expressed my disgust for all terrorists, anyone who deliberately targets random innocent civilians, regardless of nationality, race, religion, ethnicity (of the victims and of the terrorists).”

      Jon, would you say that the IDF’s attacks on Gaza were such terrorist attacks?

      • just on January 23, 2015, 8:56 am

        +1, Walid.

        Perhaps he could tell us of any incident perpetrated by any Israeli/”settler” that rises to his definition of terror……

      • eljay on January 23, 2015, 9:28 am

        >> just: Perhaps he could tell us of any incident perpetrated by any Israeli/”settler” that rises to his definition of terror……

        Don’t be surprised if his list contains few to no people. His definition of terrorist has a lot of wiggle room in it:

        1. “anyone who deliberately targets random innocent civilians” – Is one a terrorist if one:
        i) accidentally targets civilians;
        ii) targets specific civilians;
        iii) targets civilians one does not deem to be innocent; and/or
        iv) accidentally, and without any specific targeting, kills large numbers of civilians?

        2. “in occupied territory” – Is territory occupied if it is contested or is deemed to be “rightfully Israel’s”?

      • just on January 23, 2015, 11:30 am

        +1, eljay!

        I’ll wait for his response :0

    • Mooser on January 23, 2015, 3:11 pm

      “Those Rabbis got shot..” (also a Druze policeman) – it wasn’t in occupied territory.”

      It’s always possible I’ve gotten mixed up, “Jon s”, and don’t have my locations straight. So, to correct me, could you tell me where those poor Rabbis were shot, and where their seminaries, schools, are?

      • Whizdom on January 23, 2015, 3:21 pm

        Har Nof is very near the site of Deir Yassin. It is on lands outside the UNGA 181 partition plan that designates territories for the new Jewish state.

      • Mooser on January 25, 2015, 6:11 pm

        ” It is on lands outside the UNGA 181 partition plan that designates territories for the new Jewish state.”

        And that makes it…?

      • jon s on January 27, 2015, 4:17 am

        Here’s a previous comment of mine:

        http://mondoweiss.net/2014/08/our-new-look#comment-706117

  16. just on January 23, 2015, 3:20 pm

    “A Druze man was beaten on Thursday by Jewish assailants near the central bus station in Jerusalem, in what appears to be a racially-motivated attack. The man, Tommy Hasson, sustained light injuries and was taken to hospital.

    Hasson, who completed his army service a few months ago and is now a student in the city, told Ynet website that ten religious men assaulted him after hearing him speaking in Arabic.

    Israel Police said it is investigating the incident, and that it is too early to determine whether it was racially-motivated.

    President Reuven Rivlein posted a picture of himself with Hasson on his Facebook page on Friday. “I told [Hasson’s] father that we are brothers, and we will reject from our midst any conduct so terrible,” Rivlin wrote.

    In recent months, following the kidnap and murder of the three Jewish teens Gil-Ad Shaer, Naftali Fraenkel and Eyal Yifrah, there has been a sharp rise in attacks against Arabs in the capital. Some of these attacks have been attributed to the anti-Arab organization Lehava, which last month ceased its public activities after several activists were arrested by police.

    Last December, 100 Arab bus drivers in Jerusalem quit their jobs to protest the wave of attacks.”

    http://www.haaretz.com/news/national/.premium-1.638677?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter

    Hmmm.

    • seafoid on January 23, 2015, 3:45 pm

      Speaking arabic in West Jerusalem can be very dangerous.
      And it’s an official language in Israel and everything.

      Rivlin’s response is pure PR. His media tactics can’t cover over almost 50 years of state sanctioned hatred.

      • just on January 23, 2015, 3:55 pm

        all true, seafoid. ; {

    • Mooser on January 25, 2015, 6:14 pm

      “Hasson, who completed his army service a few months ago and is now a student in the city, told Ynet website that ten religious men assaulted him after hearing him speaking in Arabic.”

      Ten religious men attacked one guy? Isn’t that nice, they had a minyan in keeping with tradition. “Jon s” will be pleased at this display of extremist piety.

      • jon s on January 29, 2015, 2:46 am

        Mooser, who follows all my comments has the hutzpah to accuse me of being pleased by such an attack!

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