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April 21, 2014 / 21 Nisan, 5774
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Posts Tagged ‘Shalhevet Pass’

Arab Sniper Kills IDF Soldier in Hebron

Sunday, September 22nd, 2013

IDF Staff Sergeant Gabriel Kobi (20), from Tirat Carmel, was killed on Sunday after being shot by an Arab sniper in Hebron.

Kobi was standing in the same general area where a few years ago another Arab sniper shot and killed a Jewish baby, Shalhevet Pass.

The city of Hebron is currently under lockdown as the IDF searches for his killer.

Kobi is the second IDf soldier killed in 3 days by Palestinian Authority Arabs.

On Friday, another Arab lured an off-duty Air Force soldier to an area near his village, where he then killed the him, and dumped the soldier’s body into a well.

Bad Old Times

Wednesday, January 12th, 2011
            Several readers took issue with the Monitor’s statement last week that coverage of Israel by The New York Times, while still problematic on occasion, has improved markedly since Deborah Sontag left the paper’s Jerusalem bureau nearly a decade ago.
How quickly we forget. Let’s take a quick stroll down memory lane with just a few highlights from the Sontag hall of fame.
In an early 2000 piece on a Tel Aviv rally in support of Israel’s retaining the Golan Heights, Sontag elected to go with the lowest crowd count available – 100,000 – forgoing even a qualifier such as “at least” or “more than,” employing instead the relatively weak “about.” Nor did she feel obligated to note the higher estimates given by sources ordinarily disinclined to boost the cause of the protestors. (Reuters, not exactly known for harboring a bias toward Israel or the Israeli right, reported “an estimated 200,000.”)
Whatever the actual number of protestors, it was all the more impressive because of the inclement conditions that kept away many Israelis who might otherwise have attended – a point obscured by Sontag. Whereas Haaretzreported”cold and rainy weather” and Newsday, utilizing combined wire service accounts, described a “pouring rain,” Sontag mentioned a “cold wet night,” vague terminology suggesting perhaps a damp chill in the air.
The composition of the crowd was an important element in Sontag’s account, no doubt based on the calculation that to portray the demonstrators as out of the mainstream would be to significantly diminish the validity of their concerns. Sure enough, throughout her piece she painted a narrow and unmistakably condescending picture, at one point describing rally participants as “yeshiva students, Golan residents and retired Russian immigrants” and writing at another point that “the square was filled with yeshiva students and West Bank residents.”
Compare that to the more nuanced report filed by the Washington Post’s Lee Hockstader, who wrote of “an enormous demonstration” organized by “mostly secular Israelis – politically leftist, overwhelmingly of European origin.”
A year later, this is how Sontag opened her front-page piece on an Arab bus driver who the day before had rammed his vehicle into a bus stop, killing eight Israelis:
“After years of shuttling Gazan laborers into Israel without incident, a Palestinian bus driver who passed a strict Israeli security clearance just two weeks ago veered wildly off course today with deadly consequences.”
Note how Sontag took pains to paint the driver in the most benign of lights. Before she could even bring herself to mention the number of dead and injured, she told us of the driver’s exemplary past performance and his clean bill of health from Israeli security.
And the manner in which Sontag conveyed the cause of the deadly incident – the driver “veered wildly off course” – made it appear as if the poor soul might simply have lost control of the steering wheel. The late Yasir Arafat, whose initial reaction to the incident was to shrug it off as just another “road accident,” couldn’t have put it better.
Contrast Sontag’s approach to that of The Boston Globe’s Vivienne Walt, who wrote, “A Palestinian driver slammed a bus into a crowd of young Israeli soldiers outside Tel Aviv yesterday, killing eight people. It was the deadliest attack on Israelis since 1997.”
   Sontag’s tendentious reporting was on full display in her March 27, 2001 article on the murder of 10-month-old Shalhevet Pass. “Palestinian gunmen,” Sontag wrote in her lead paragraph, “shot and killed a baby girl today outside the family home in the divided city of Hebron, Israeli officials said.”
   A casual reader could well have come away with the assumption that it was an Arab baby who had been shot for some unexplained reason. In fact, not once in the entire piece did Sontag identify the tiny victim as Jewish or Israeli.
   Of course, no effort by Sontag would be complete without a stab at moral equivalency, as was the case with her follow-up article on Shalhevet Pass’s funeral, which began with a reference to a woman holding a framed picture of the infant in a Purim costume – “in the style,” wrote Sontag, “of the Palestinian mothers who grieve for their martyred sons.”

   If anyone can point to anything written over the past decade by an Israel-based Times reporter (other than Sontag) that even approaches such wretchedly biased reporting, the Monitor will gladly acknowledge it.

 

Jason Maoz can be reached at jmaoz@jewishpress.com

Tragedy Within A Tragedy

Friday, June 29th, 2001

So many images keep crowding my mind. Images that do not allow me to rest or feel at peace. The news from Eretz Yisroel grows more menacing with every day. I’ve heard some people say that they’ve stopped reading the papers -the news is just too awful. And others do read, but they shrug their shoulders saying, ‘That’s how things are in Israel. What can one do?’ And I see the danger in accepting the banality of evil. But the stories in the news cry out and pierce your heart. Who can forget five- year-old little Sascha, a victim of the Netanya bombing, writhing in agony, screaming ‘Mommy, Mommy!?’ as he lay alone in Room 8 of Hillel Yaffa Hospital in Hadera. His little face had been chewed by shrapnel, his jawbone and collarbone were broken, his cries muffled by the oxygen mask covering his mouth. Mommy cannot come to Sascha. She too is a victim and is downstairs in the O.R., undergoing major surgery. Strangely enough, Sascha does not call for his father. Perhaps he instinctively knows that Daddy is gone – when the bomb exploded, he was blown to smithereens.

I hear the cries of two young boys who were savagely bludgeoned to death, their skulls crushed beyond recognition. I keep thinking of their parents who hear their cries day and night, who go to sleep with a nightmare from which they cannot awaken.

I see the sweet cherubic face of ten-month-old Shalhevet Pass, being pushed in her stroller by Mommy and Daddy. They are on their way to visit Grandma and Grandpa in the Avraham Avinu neighborhood of Hebron. Suddenly, a bullet pierces her skull, and Shahlevet Pass is no more. And you wonder what sort of beast can deliberately aim his sniper scope at a baby sitting in a stroller? I think of her parents, Yitzchok and Oriya, seeing their baby killed before their very eyes. They will re-live that moment as long as they live. And it’s not over – the list goes on and on.

I see the two young Israeli reservists who mistakenly took a wrong turn into Ramallah. They were brutally lynched, then flung out of a window like so much refuse. But the frenzied mob could not let go and stomped their bodies until their skulls became like bowls of red jelly.

I see Binyamin and Talia Kahane’s six little orphans who will never again hear their mother’s caressing voice or feel their father’s protective arms around them. I see the Cohen children without limbs. I see the orphans, the widows, the widowers, and the mothers and the fathers whose babies and children have been maimed and killed in this carnage. ‘Al aleh ani bochea – For these do I weep…’ Alas, another chapter has been added to Aicha – our Book of Lamentations..

No one wants to see or understand our pain. As expected, the whole world has turned against us. As a survivor of Bergen Belsen, I am not surprised at that, but still, one would have hoped that there would be some outcry, some condemnation of the savagery. The media has an uncanny way of equating bestial Arab atrocities with Israel’s actions of self-defense. Make no mistake about it – what the Arabs are perpetrating is beyond war, beyond terrorism. It is unmitigated cruelty for the sake of cruelty; barbarism for the sake of barbarism.

I remember in the 50′s, when some Israelis were captured by Arabs. Not only were they killed, but the savages cut off their genitals and drank their blood – and that was typical Arab behavior. Somehow, somewhere, our Israeli leadership chose to forget this and persuaded themselves that Arafat and company are really decent fellows who sought peace and only needed an opportunity to prove themselves…. Thus, the Oslo accords were born. We handed over our land and now we are reaping the bloody harvest. Yes, this is beyond war, beyond terrorism. This is satanic evil for the sake of evil. But the world refuses to see it. It is not only the media that is part of this Israel bashing. The Pope, who is supposed to be a man of G-d, is a silent accomplice as well. He didn’t utter a word of protest while, in his presence, Bashar Assad of Syria vilified Israel with a most vicious, anti-Semitic diatribe, reminiscent of Hitler. And so, the Arabs continue to kill our men, women, and children, and the world, led by the media, continues to assail us for defending ourselves.

But there is another tragedy that most are unaware of. Inadvertently, The New York Times reported it. The shopping mall in Netanya, where the suicide bomber unleashed his carnage, houses a multi-screen cinema which is open on the Holy Sabbath. The Times reported that ‘despite the damage the mall was defiantly reopened on Friday night to allow brave local residents to go to the movies.’ Who can comprehend the enormity of this tragedy? Jews believing that they are demonstrating their courage when they go to the movies on Shabbat. Jews believing that we can show defiance by keeping shopping malls open on the holy Shabbat…. A tragedy within a tragedy. When will our people wake up and return to G-d’ -For these do I weep…’

What will it take to make our people realize that there is no one to help us except HaShem? When will they understand that the Torah is our tree of life, and Shabbat is our holy sanctuary?

What are we to do? How are we to respond to this terrible hour in our history?

Our sages teach that whatever happened to our forefathers will be repeated in our own lives. The manner in which our first redemption from Egypt occurred, so will the final redemption unfold. Chazal teache us that our forefathers were steeped in idolatry and did not merit the exodus. So what was it that impelled HaShem to bring us forth from that house of bondage?

Simply stated, the answer is chesed – the loving kindness that one Jew demonstrated for another. At the end of the Parsha of Shemos, we find that the people were afflicted with terrible suffering. Pharaoh intensified their burden by demanding that they produce their own bricks while maintaining the same production quota – an impossible task. Jewish overseers were charged with the responsibility of seeing to it that the people delivered the bricks, and if they failed to do so, the Jews were flogged. The Jewish leaders however, could not bear to hear the painful cry of their brethren, so they took the beatings upon themselves, and when HaShem saw this, He proclaimed. ‘Gam ani shamati – I also heard.’

When G-d sees that we have compassion for one another, that we are sensitive to another’s needs, and are even prepared to accept pain in order to spare our brethren, then G-d will act accordingly and bring about our redemption.

This then must become our task. At the very least, let?s try to feel with our brothers and sisters. Let us cry out to the heavens on behalf of Acheinu Kol Beit Yisroel – our brothers, our Jewish people. Let us undertake to say Tehillim every day. Let us intensify our devotion to Shabbos and mitzvos so that the energy of our commitment will spill over to those who do not know or understand. That is the ‘defiance’ that the Arabs and the world should see – Jews sticking together like glue, upholding Eretz Yisroel with chesed, Torah, and mitzvos.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/judaism/rebbetzins-viewpointrebbetzin-jungreis/tragedy-within-a-tragedy/2001/06/29/

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