Was the Israeli raid on the Jericho prison last week necessary and justified? Absolutely. The prison was little more than the headquarters for the Marxist Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine and other terrorists, who were operating and directing terrorism openly from the place. They were using the prison as their Ramada Inn, sleeping there at night to keep the Americans happy while allowing the Palestinian Authority to maintain the pretense of keeping the terrorists and mass murderers locked up.
Under an earlier Israeli appeasement, instead of Israel insisting that the Palestinian Authority live up to its Oslo obligations and turn over wanted terrorist murderers, a pusillanimous “compromise” was reached, with American intervention, that permitted the murderers to be “jailed” in “prisons” run by the PLO. I have stayed at worse hotels and motels.
Was the Israeli operation coordinated with the Americans and the British? Israel, the U.S. and the UK are all saying no, which probably means yes. The Islamofascist savages are foaming at the mouth at all three countries, which is no doubt the very best result of the raid. Just us anti-terrorism democracies, getting together once again.
Western leftist “peace activists” were briefly snatched up from the streets of Gaza and the West Bank by Hamas and Islamic Jihad. Nearly all the other anti-Israel bleeding hearts and busybodies who came into those areas to help the Palestinians and their “armed struggle” fled, with their tails between their legs, back to the safety of “apartheid Israel.”
Gaza and the West Bank were at least temporarily cleansed ofthe International Solidarity Movement,Western pro-terror activists, and their copycats. Suddenly the pro-terror yuppies were not so anxious to serve as human shields for the Jericho terrorists in their soiled underwear. And that alone was such a lovely benefit that justified the entire operation.
Was the attack timed to help Acting Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert achieve a more impressive electoral victory? No doubt.
Was it an unqualified success? No, unfortunately. It was a qualified success, mixed with the usual dose of Israeli stupidity, incompetence and muddle-headedness.
It was a success because the sight of Palestinian murderers, including the Palestinian Authority “guards” (concierges would be a more accurate term), being chased out of the “prison,” unable tocontrol their bladders in fear, was the first real demonstration in quite a while that Israel is willing to use force to survive.
The sight of Israeli leaders choosing to shoot mortars at terrorists rather than begging them for talks was a shot of pride into the national vertebra. Terrorists being marched off to an Israeli prison, after hours of their usual rhetoric being broadcast out of the prison via satellite phones, was the funniest thing since Egyptian soldiers in the Sinai in 1967 ran off, leaving their shoes behind in the sand.
So much for Islamofascist rhetoric about how they are all prepared to die for their sacred cause. The PFLP terrorists had always been perfectly willing to dispatch other people to their deaths as suicide bombers, but prefer prison food to acting out a Palestinian Masada.
And all this occurred on Purim, no less, the anniversary of the downfall of Haman.
But the Jericho operation was so typically Israeli because the terrorists, including the murderers of Israeli cabinet minister Rehavam Ze’evi, were not summarily killed. They were foolishly captured alive and now serve as an open invitation for terrorist savages to grab Israeli civilians as hostages to trade. It would be impossible to find a better illustration of the mindlessness of Israel’srefusal to institute a death penalty. When the “prisoners” refused at first to surrender in Jericho, a single Daisy Cutter could have made a far better statement about Israel’s determination than all the show trials Olmert’s people now wish to run for the captured terrorists – murderers who will be represented by the usual Israeli Marxist Jewish lawyers, ever ready to defend Arab mass murderers of Jews.
The raid did point up the ridiculousness of the media’s representation of the PLO’s Abu Mazen as a “moderate.” Israel simply did what the PLO had committed itself to do with the imprisoned terrorists in the Oslo Accords, and yet Abu Mazenfoamed at the mouth at what he called an Israeli “crime.” He was echoed by the pro-terror “anarchists” from ISM, safe in their overseas Starbucks.
The main target of the raid was one Ahmed Saadat, chief terrorist in the PFLP, who had ordered the assassination of Israeli cabinet minister Ze’evi, and the actual murderers, who were all in the Jericho “prison.”
Saadat and the Palestinian murderers had long been objects of fascination for the Genocide of Jews Now crowd. Some Israeli academic extremists had actually gone to Ramallah to embrace Arafat when Arafat refused to turn the terrorists who killed Ze’evi over to Israel. Perhaps Olmert should consider sending in bulldozers for a siege of the Department of Political Science at Ben Gurion University – with the sociology department of Tel Aviv University next on the list.
Surely most readers of The Jewish Press know exactly the type of leftist Israeli professor referred to above. He spends the morning getting his car fixed at an Arab-owned garage, stops to pick up his pills at an Arab-owned pharmacy, calls his Arab renovations contractor about the work on his house, pays his Arab gardener, checks the results of his blood test with the Arab lab technician, stops for lunch at an Arab-owned restaurant, takes a cab owned and driven by an Arab to campus, and then lectures his Arab and Jewish students about how Israel is such an apartheid state.
Steven Plaut is a professor at Haifa University. His book “The Scout” is available at Amazon.com. He can be contacted firstname.lastname@example.org.