Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas expressed his “sadness and sorrow” on Wednesday over the death of former President Shimon Peres.
Abbas sent a message of condolence to the family of Israel’s ninth president, according to the official PA news agency, WAFA.
“Peres was a partner in making the brave peace with the martyr Yasser Arafat and Prime Minister [Yitzhak] Rabin, and made unremitting efforts to reach a lasting peace from the Oslo Agreement until the final moments of his life,” Abbas said, according to WAFA.
Peres is to be laid to rest at the Mount Herzl military cemetery, in the section reserved for Israel’s founding fathers. He will be laid to rest five meters from Rabin.
However, the same official PA news agency also issued a venomous obituary for Peres in which the former president was said to be responsible for the “deaths of Palestinians” and “many crimes.” Peres was described in an official statement from the PA government as having been responsible for having built the Dimona nuclear reactor, and there was no mention of the 93-year-old statesman’s role in “making the brave peace” or for having tried to reach a “lasting peace” via the Oslo Accords — for which he received the Nobel Peace Prize, together with Israel’s late Prime Minister Rabin, and late PLO terror leader Yasser Arafat.
Meanwhile, the Hamas terrorist organization based in Gaza — which is also part of the Palestinian Authority — welcomed the death of the former Israeli president.
Sami Abu Zukhri, a spokesperson for Hamas, said “The Palestinian people are happy at the death of this criminal.
Shimon Peres was one of the last Israeli founders of the occupation. His death marks the end of an era in the history of the Israeli occupation,” he told the AFP news agency.
Peres will be laid to rest on Friday, and it is not yet known whether or not the Palestinian Authority will send a delegation to the funeral.
U.S. President Barack Obama offered one-line solutions to nations around the world Tuesday during his speech at the United Nations General Assembly.
Speaking of the decades-old dispute between Israel and the Palestinian Authority that evaded even Obama’s two-term attempts at peace-making, the American president offered this view:
“Surely Israelis and Palestinians will be better off if Palestinians reject incitement and recognize the legitimacy of Israel, but Israel recognizes that it cannot permanently occupy and settle Palestinian land.”
He had a lot to say about events in the Middle East in general:
“Just as force alone cannot impose order internationally, I believe in my core that repression cannot forge the social cohesion for nations to succeed. The history of the last two decades proves that in today’s world, dictatorships are unstable. The strongmen of today become the spark of revolution tomorrow. You can jail your opponents but you can’t imprison ideas. You can try to control access to information but you cannot turn a lie into truth.”
He also had a great deal to say specifically about Syria, about the formation and evolution of Da’esh (ISIS) and the issue of radical Islamist terror, which he continued to refuse to label as such.
“We know that ISIL … depends on perpetual war to survive … Part of our job together is to work to reject such extremism that infects too many of our young people. Part of that effort must be a continued rejection by Muslims, of those who distort Islam, to preach intolerance and promote violence. It must also involve a rejection by non-Muslims of the ignorance that equates Islam with terror. This work will take time. There are no easy answers to Syria.”
Ultimately, he said, nations need to work together to prevent mass killings and torture.
“We also have to recognize that we must work more effectively in the future as an international community, to build capacity for states that are in distress, before they collapse.
“That’s why we should celebrate the fact that later today the United States will join with more than 50 countries to enlist new capabilities, infantry, intelligence, helicopters, hospitals, and tens of thousands of troops to strengthen United Nations peacekeepers.
These new capabilities can prevent mass killings and ensure that peace agreements are more than words on paper. But we have to do it together…. to establish security where order has broken down, and to support those who seek a just and lasting peace.”
IDF forces early Wednesday morning raided and ransacked the Arab radio station al-Sanabel in Dura, near Hebron, detained five employees for interrogation, and closed the station down for three months. The action was taken in response to incitement that was being broadcast by the station. According to the IDF Spokesperson, al-Sanabel regularly broadcast anti-Israeli content, supported attacks on Israeli citizens, congratulated terrorists for carrying out acts of murder, and encouraged Arab participation in riots.
The IDF force left a closure order on the station’s sealed door.
Arab media identified the detainees as station chief Ahmad al-Darawish, and employees Muhammad al-Sus, Nidal Amro, Muntaser Nassar, and Hamed al-Nammura. Their homes were also raided.
An IDF spokesman issued a statement in Arabic saying Israeli army, police, and civil administration authority forces closed al-Sanabel under a military order accusing the radio station of broadcasting programs that incite against Israel.
Israel is sending information to the French government, which is discussing an initiative to prevent foreign financing of bodies that harm the security of French citizens.
The discussion came in the wake of the attack last week by two Da’esh terrorists on a church in Normandy. The terrorists slaughtered an 84-year-old Catholic priest on the altar of his own church as he was celebrating Mass, forcing a fellow priest to video the ordeal.
French Prime Minister Manuel Valls, meanwhile wrote in a lengthy article in the Journal du Dimanche (the Sunday Journal), that France has throughout its history and geography maintained “very strong” ties with Islam, the “second-largest” religion in the country.
“Millions of French Muslims live here without necessarily identifying themselves as an Arab-Muslim culture,” he noted, adding that because of this specific French connection, plus the country’s centuries-old connection to Christianity and its long Jewish presence that it has been targed by Da’esh (ISIS) terrorists.
“A terrible poison is spreading,” he warned. “Many Muslims in France are taken hostage by the fundamentalism Salafism, the Muslim Brotherhood who use their worship as a banner, a weapon against others.”
“We were all shocked by the vicious terrorist attack in France last week. I have heard about a French government discussion on preventing the foreign financing of bodies that harm the security of French citizens,” said Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in opening remarks at the start of the Israeli cabinet meeting Sunday.
“This sounds familiar to us. We are also disturbed by such donations to organizations that deny the State of Israel’s right to exist,” he said.
Some two dozen leftist organizations in Israel have been found to receive more than half of their funding from foreign governments. All of them have actively worked to either tear down the government or to incite the population against government policies.
“I have requested a preliminary inquiry,” Netanyahu said. “In this inquiry we found support from European countries — including France — for several organizations that engage in incitement, call for a boycott of Israel and do not recognize the State of Israel’s right to exist,” he said. (ed: italics added for emphasis)
“We will complete the inquiry and submit the findings to the French government. We will discuss this with them because terror is terror everywhere and incitement is incitement which, apparently, encompasses the world, governments must be as united as possible in dealing with them.”
Jerusalem (TPS) – Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu released a statement condemning the murder of a 13-year-old Israeli girl by a Palestinian Authority Arab terrorist in Kiryat Arba on Thursday morning, calling on the Palestinian Authorty leadership, and the world, to unequivocally join in the condemnation. The terrorist broke into the Ariel family’s home and stabbed the daughter, Hallel, to death in her bed.
“The horrifying murder of a young girl in her bed underscores the bloodlust and inhumanity of the incitement-driven terrorists that we are facing,” Netanyahu said. “The entire nation deeply identifies with the family’s pain and declares to the murderers: You will not break us. We will continue to take strong and determined action against terrorism everywhere and at all times.”
Seventeen-year-old Mohammed Tarayra from the nearby Arab village of Bani Na’im breached the security fence of Kiryat Arba’s Harsina neighborhood Thursday morning and stabbed Hallel Yaffa Ariel to death as she slept in her bed. A security volunteer responding to the incident was also wounded by the terrorist, and is now in moderate condition.
Tarayra was killed at the scene.
Netanyahu held a security consultation with Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman after the attack, and ordered to cordon off the Bani Na’im village, revoke work permits for members of his clan, and to begin the procedure of getting official approval to demolish the terrorist’s family home.
“I expect the Palestinian leadership to clearly and unequivocally condemn this vicious murder and take immediate action to stop the incitement,” Netanyahu added.
Netanyahu also called upon the world at-large to speak out against the attack, saying: “The entire world needs to condemn this murder just as it condemned the terrorist attacks in Orlando and Brussels.”
“Enlightened nations must join in this demand. They must pressure the one who heads the network of incitement that leads to the murder of children in their beds and not the State of Israel, which is working to protect its children and its citizens,” he added, referring to Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, whom Netanyahu frequently accuse of inciting violence against Jews.
Ofir Gendelman, the Israeli prime minister’s official spokesperson to the Arab media, expressed outrage over the Palestinian Authority’s response to the attack, tweeting: “Official PA media outlets call the Palestinian terrorist who murdered 13 y/o Hallel Ariel in her bed ‘a martyr.’”
Yael Kabilio, Hallel’s aunt, expressed deep despair over the family’s loss and called upon Netanyahu to take direct action.
“Today the most wonderful girl in the world was murdered. We are in deep mourning, feeling great sorrow,” she said. “I have many things to say to the prime minister. He should come to his senses. The home front is on fire today. Today it’s our house, tomorrow it’s another. Take matters into your own hands and come to your senses.”
The victim was a cousin of MK Uri Ariel, Israel’s minister of agriculture and rural development, who tweeted: “Arab terror has struck our family, but the response must be national. Deterring terrorists, redoubling building and planting in Judea and Samaria, and applying Israeli sovereignty to Area C,” referring to territory in Judea and Samaria that the Oslo Accords assign to Israeli civilian and military control.
MK Isaac Herzog, leader of the opposition and chairman of the Labor party, shared in the Ariel family’s loss, saying: “my heart breaks looking at the photo of Hallel Yaffa Ariel, smiling an innocent and calm smile.”
A newly released 10-minute online video produced by the Jerusalem-based Center for Near East Policy Research says that many of the Palestinians who have murdered Israelis during the so-called “stabbing intifada,” which began in September 2015, were educated in schools run by the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA).
Titled “The UNRWA road to terror: Palestinian classroom incitement,” the video claims that the current wave of violence was not spontaneous, but rather has roots deriving “from an educational curriculum taught to Palestinians beginning in first grade.”
Thirty-eight Israelis and tourists have been murdered in the nine-month-long Palestinian terror wave, most recently the shooting at Tel Aviv’s Sarona market that killed four Israelis.
UNRWA’s curriculum, the video says, is focused on “jihad,” while UNRWA teachers glorify the so-called “right of return” of Palestinian refugees through war. The video reveals a military-themed school play held in April 2016 at the UNRWA Nuseirat School in Gaza, in which students hold an Israeli hostage at gunpoint and emerge from a tunnel in order to carry out an attack against Israelis—the latter scene mirroring the Hamas terror group’s efforts to attack the Jewish state through cross-border tunnels running underground from Gaza to Israel.
The footage begins by zooming in on classrooms of Palestinian children repeating phrases chanted by their teachers such as “Palestine is an Arab land from the river to the sea” and “We want Haifa, we want Acre,” with no recognition of a state called Israel.
The scene then shifts to numerous one-on-one interviews with Palestinian children in the courtyards of their schools in various Jerusalem neighborhoods and surrounding areas, in which they admit that they are taught in school that it is their destiny to violently “reclaim” the entire country they refer to only as “Palestine.”
One student from the Shuafat refugee camp says that his UNRWA educators “teach us in school that Jews are fickle, bad people.” He adds, “I am ready to stab a Jew and drive [a car] over them.” Another student from Shuafat says, “We have to constantly stab them, drive over them, and shoot them (the Jews).”
A child from Kalandia is filmed saying that he is taught about how “Zionists are our enemy, and [we] must fight them.” A different student at the same school says, “With Allah’s help I will fight for ISIS, the Islamic State.”
Documentary filmmaker David Bedein, director of the Center of Near East Policy Research, says that the U.N. member states who are the funders of UNRWA schools should be held accountable for the agency’s hate education. Bedein says that at the top of that list of funders is the United States—UNRWA’s largest donor, providing $400 million of the organization’s annual $1.2 billion budget.
U.S. Rep. Doug Lamborn (R-Colo.) echoes Bedein, tellingFoxNews.com that an UNRWA education “does not in any way prepare the Palestinian population or future generations of Palestinians for peace with Israelis. It is unacceptable that the international community, including the United States, is funding UNRWA without demanding change.”
According to Bedein, about 100 Palestinian children studying in UNRWA schools were interviewed for the video. Those children, he tells JNS.org, “have been indoctrinated to believe that they have the right to kill Jews, because they took their land.”
He adds that the children “learn that in all of the villages that their great-grandparents lost in 1948, that it’s kosher to walk into any place that used to be one of those villages whether Tel Aviv or Jerusalem and kill the people who live there.”
Asked why the Israeli Ministry of Education doesn’t get involved in stopping UNWRA’s incitement, Bedein says the ministry’s hands are tied and that it can’t interfere with UNRWA schools. He says that Israel’s Defense Ministry and Foreign Ministry, however, “could have a say in it but choose not to.”
Bedein explains that the philosophy of the Israeli government “is that the U.N. schools give an opportunity to have peace education as an alternative to Hamas or terrorist education. However, the reality is that UNRWA is operating in a way that it’s providing worse incitement than the Palestinian Authority incitement or Hamas incitement. It’s a level of cognitive dissonance, and people don’t want to hear what they don’t want to hear.”
It is highly disturbing, says Bedein, that the students interviewed in the video weren’t living in Gaza under Hamas rule, but rather in or near Israel’s capital of Jerusalem.
“It’s literally a 10-minute ride from Mount Scopus in Jerusalem to the Shuafat refugee camp run by UNRWA, where this incitement is taking place,” he says.
The new video has started to gain traction on social media. The Israel education organization StandWithUs recently shared the video with its 970,000 followers on Facebook.
“The teaching of racism and religious supremacism in UNRWA schools plays a major role in the violence Palestinian terrorists are inflicting on innocent Israelis,” StandWithUs CEO Roz Rothstein tells JNS.org. “This incitement of Palestinian children hurts Israelis and Palestinians alike, and must be stopped for there to be lasting peace.”
When asked to comment on the video and on America’s annual $400 million support of UNRWA, a press attaché at the U.S. Consulate in Jerusalem declined comment and instead referred JNS.org to UNRWA. In an emailed response to JNS.org, UNRWA spokesperson Christopher Gunness denied the film’s accusations and questioned its standards.
Gunness says that the “generalized allegation made in the film that many Palestinian children who murdered Jews came from UNRWA schools is completely unsubstantiated in the film, which produces no evidence to prove this.”
According to Gunness, “In this latest, he (Bedein) takes non-UNRWA facilities and falsely claims they belong to UNRWA. He shows teachers claiming they are UNRWA teachers when in fact they are not and he plays the same tricks with students, often misrepresenting what they say in translations.”
“As a neutral U.N. humanitarian agency, UNRWA is committed to promoting non-violence and the highest standards of neutrality,” adds Gunness. “Our condemnation of all forms of racism, including anti-Semitism, is a matter of public record.”
In response to Gunness, Bedein—who says he has been monitoring UNRWA’s activities for 28 years—maintains that his research on UNRWA in the latest video and past videos is authentic, and that the videos “should be cause for this humanitarian organization (UNRWA) to carry out a self-introspection.”
“Instead of denying [the new video’s] validity,” says Bedein, “UNRWA should bring it to the attention of donor nations that they are funding war curriculum education within a U.N. organization, so that the situation can be rectified.”
Bedein says that his institution’s next project will be to translate all of the latest Palestinian Authority textbooks from Arabic into English, to prove that “despite the fact the U.S. government issued a statement that [the books] have been evaluated and teach ‘peace,’ we have seen the books, and that’s not the case.”