After serving a few years in prison for his role in the Munich Massacre, Willi Pohl moved to Beirut. The brief sentence was a slap in the wrist, but Pohl had still served more time in prison than the Muslim gunmen who had murdered eleven Israeli athletes and coaches during the 1972 Summer Olympics in Munich. Mohammed Safady and the Al-Gashey cousins were released after a few months by the German authorities. They went back to Lebanon and so did he.
A decade after the attack, Willi Pohl had begun making a name for himself as a crime novelist. His first novel, written as Willi Woss, was Tränen Schützen Nicht vor Mord or Tears Do Not Protect Against Murder.
While Pohl was penning crime novels, Israeli operatives had already absorbed the lessons of his first title. Tears, whether in 1939 or 1972, had not done anything to prevent the murder of Jews. Bullets were another matter.
The head of Black September in Rome was the first to die, followed by a string of PLO leaders across Europe. Those attacks were followed by raids on the mansions and apartments of top Fatah officials in the same city where Pohl had found temporary refuge. By the time his first book was published, hundreds of PLO terrorists and many of its top officials were dead.
Western law enforcement had failed to hold responsible even the actual perpetrators of the Munich Massacre, never mind the representatives of the PLO who openly mingled with red radicals in Europe’s capitals. Israeli operatives did what the German judicial system had failed to do, putting down Safady and one of the Al-Gasheys, while the other one hid out as a frightened guest of Colonel Gaddafi in Libya.
The Israeli raid on the PLO terrorists in Beirut’s Muslim Quarter missed one important target. Arafat. And so, on another September day, some 19 years later, September 13, 1993, Israeli Prime Minister Rabin shook hands with Arafat and proclaimed, “Enough of blood and tears! Enough!” But the blood and tears had only begun, as a PLO on its last legs was revived by that handshake and built its terrorist infrastructure inside Israel’s borders.
By 1993, the year of the infamous Rose Garden handshake, 45 Israelis had been killed and 34 injured in Muslim terrorist attacks. A year after the handshake, the toll stood at 109 Israelis dead and 456 wounded. By 2002, the year that Israel’s patience finally broke and Sharon sent forces storming into Arafat’s compound, the numbers for that year were a horrifying 451 dead and 2,348 wounded.
Today, some 40 years after that September in Munich and 19 years after the even worse tragedy of that September in Washington D.C., with over 1,500 dead since that fatal handshake, there have been rivers of blood and tears. And a shortage of bullets.
PLO officials these days are more likely to die of morbid obesity or, like Arafat, of AIDS, than of Israeli raids. They are nearly as likely to kill each other, like Arafat’s cousin, Moussa Arafat, the former head of the Palestinian Authority’s terrorist forces, who was dragged out of his home and shot by his own people. The murder of Mohammed Abu Shaaban, killed a week after the handshake, by his own people, was the first of a long string of Fatah on Fatah violence that is a far more likely cause of death for top terrorists than the jet planes and tanks of the hated Zionist regime.
Ehud Barak and Yoni Netanyahu took part in the Beirut raids that devastated the PLO leadership and nearly killed Arafat. Today, Barak serves as Defense Minister and Netanyahu’s brother as the Prime Minister of the State of Israel. Rather than fight terrorism, their government made the Shalit deal which freed over a 1,000 terrorists in exchange for a captured Israeli soldier. Afterward, Barak said that a “life-loving country” cannot afford to keep exchanging 1,000 terrorists for a soldier.
And yet the Shalit deal was reasonable compared to the Peace Process. While Israel has given up a great many lives and a great deal of land, it has yet to receive peace. But in the Shalit deal, it actually did get Gilad Shalit back. If a “life-loving” country cannot afford to keep exchanging one soldier for 1,000 terrorists, then how can it afford to keep exchanging land and lives for the false promise of peace?
Terrorists are a renewable resource. Arrest them, plant them in jail, let them study for advanced degrees and post status updates to Facebook while collecting salaries from the Palestinian Authority, funded by the United States and Europe, then trade them for a soldier. Then when they’ve gone back to their old habits, arrest them and trade them again. But doing that with territory is much harder. Let Israel try offering Ramallah a second time in exchange for peace and see what kind of howls rise out of the State Department in Washington D.C. and the Foreign Office in London.
The terrorists can offer Israel peace in exchange for Jerusalem, even though they already offered it in exchange for Ramallah, but Israel isn’t allowed to meet farce with farce by seizing Ramallah and then offering it back in exchange for peace.
Instead, Israel keeps putting new lands on the table, which Washington and London proclaim to be insufficient because something is too low a price to pay for nothing. Peace is a priceless commodity. while half of Israel’s capital is a negotiable commodity. But after two decades of negotiations, Israel is running out of things to negotiate with.
The old joke about the Six-Day-War was that the Egyptians had followed the Soviet battle plan from World War II: pull back and wait for winter. The joke has now turned around. Since the Nineties, the Israelis have been following the American battle plan from Vietnam: sign a worthless peace accord, pull out and then ignore what happens afterward. Just as Egypt doesn’t have Russian winters, Israel doesn’t have a 6,000 mile distance from its last war.
The rivers of tears keep flowing and, while Israeli spokesmen can list in detail every single casualty, tears don’t protect against murder. Neither do peace treaties. No amount of tears stopped the murder of Six Million Jews, convinced the British Foreign Ministry to allow Jews fleeing the Nazis into Israel or the State Department to allow them into the United States. The St. Louis and the Struma are both reminders of the futility of tears.
No amount of tears has convinced the International Olympic Committee to respond decently to the Munich Massacre. And no amount of tears from the tens of thousands mutilated, tortured, crippled, wounded, orphaned and widowed by the PLO in all its front groups, splinter groups and incarnations, including its current incarnation as a phony government, has been enough to stop American and European governments from supporting, arming and funding the terrorists.
Tears don’t protect against murder. They don’t stop killers from killing. They don’t prevent the authorities from looking the other way when the killings happen because there is something in it for them. They don’t bring the terrorists to justice. They don’t even ensure that the truth will be told, rather than the lie that rationalizes the crimes.
Tears did not stop the operation of a single gas chamber. They did not save the life of a single Jewish refugee. They did not stop a single dollar from going to the PLO or Fatah or Black September or the Palestinian Authority or any of the other masks that the gang of Soviet-trained killers wore. They will not stop Iran from developing and detonating a nuclear weapon over Tel Aviv. They will not stop Israel from being carved up by terrorists whose demands are backed up by the diplomatic capital of every nation that bows its head in the direction of Mecca, Medina and Riyadh, and the old men who control the oil wells and the mosques.
In 1988, Willi Pohl published another book, Das Gesetz des Dschungels or The Law of the Jungle. That same year, PLO terrorists carried out the “Mother’s Bus Attack” taking the passengers of a bus, filled with women on board, hostage and demanding the release of all imprisoned terrorists. The terrorists killed two hostages and Israeli Special Forces moved in, killing the terrorists and saving the lives of all but one hostage.
In response, Israeli commandos stormed Tunis, killing Abu Jihad, a former Muslim Brotherhood member and the number two Fatah leader after Arafat. The United Nations Security Council met and passed Resolution 611, noting with concern the “loss of human life,” particularly that of Abu Jihad, and vigorously condemned the “act of aggression.” Not a single member of the Security Council voted against it. The United States abstained.
Not one single resolution was passed that year or the year afterward or the year after that condemning a terrorist attack against Israel or criticizing any of the countries that trained, armed and harbored the terrorists. Instead there were numerous resolutions condemning Israel for expelling and deporting terrorists. The closest thing to a resolution critical of terrorism was Resolution 579 in response to the Achille Lauro hijacking, carried out by men loyal to Mahmoud Abbas, the current President of the Palestinian Authority, who also provided the funding for the Munich Massacre. Resolution 579 did not mention the Achille Lauro, Leon Klinghoffer or Palestinian Arab terrorists. Instead it condemned “hostage-taking” in general.
In 1972, the year of the Munich Massacre, there were three Security Council resolutions condemning Israel. Not a single one condemning the massacre of Olympic athletes at an international event. Not a single one condemning the countries which armed, trained, harbored and controlled the terrorists. The countries that had refused that their flags be lowered in response to the massacre.
This was the law of the jungle disguised as international law. Against the law of the jungle, tears are futile. Jungle law cannot be debated away, it cannot be disproven, it cannot be defeated with Hasbara, it cannot be subdued with the speechifying of an Abba Eban or a Benjamin Netanyahu. It cannot be moralized into decency or signed away with peace treaties. It can only be met with resistance.
Tears don’t protect against murder. Bullets do.
About the Author: Daniel Greenfield is an Israeli born blogger and columnist, and a Shillman Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. His work covers American, European and Israeli politics as well as the War on Terror. His writing can be found at http://sultanknish.blogspot.com/. The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not represent the views of The Jewish Press.
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