Photo Credit: Yonatan Sindel/Flash90
Friends and family attend the funeral of Israeli couple, Naama and Eitam Henkin at Har HaMenuchot Cemetery in Jerusalem on Friday, October 2, 2015.

{Originally posted to the author’s website, FirstOne Through}

On October 1, 2015, terrorists shot and killed two Israeli civilians who were driving in their car with their children. As in the past, the United Nations comments about the murders stood in sharp contrast to crimes that may have been committed by Israeli Jews (such as the arson attack which killed three Arabs in Duma):

  • The UN release was all of 181 words (compared to 422 words in Duma)
  • The UN never referred to the event as terrorism (compared to 3 times in Duma)
  • No blame placed on Arabs or Muslims (compared to blaming Jews in Duma)
  • This attack is “condemned” (versus “strongly condemned” in Duma)
  • No blame placed on Palestinian incitement (compared to blaming Jewish settlements in Duma)
  • The UN made a passing reference to Hamas incitement when it stated that “there is nothing heroic about the killing of civilians“, deciding not to specifically and directly call out Palestinians who praised these murders as “heroic”.
  • Similarly, this attack on Israelis is not described as politically motivated (as it was in Duma)
  • No comment on Abbas’s condemnation of the attack- because Abbas didn’t (compared to no mention of Netanyahu condemning attack in Duma)


In Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s address to the United Nations General Assembly on the same day, he rebuked almost all of the countries present for their total silence regarding the threats that the Islamic Republic of Iran made to destroy Israel. This fleeting note of concern by the UN about murdered Israeli civilians remains disappointing.

The UN release about murder of Henkins October 2015:

The United Nations Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process has condemned a shooting attack that took place today on an Israeli civilian vehicle in the West Bank which resulted in the death of two people and injuries to their four children.

“There is nothing heroic about the killing of civilians. The perpetrators of this violent act must be brought to justice,” Nickolay Mladenov said in a statement issued in Jerusalem.

“In order to avoid escalation all must refrain from inflammatory statements and retaliatory action that can only further exacerbate an already tense environment.”

Recent weeks have witnessed increasing tensions both in the West Bank and in East Jerusalem, prompting UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, the Security Council and the High Commissioner for Human Rights to urge Israelis and Palestinians to defuse tensions and prevent any escalation of the current situation on the ground.

Mr. Mladenov noted that today’s tragic incident again highlights “the need for significant steps to help stabilize the situation, reverse the current negative trends and restore hope that a just and lasting negotiated two-State solution is possible.”

UN release of arson attack in Duma July 2015:

“31 July 2015 – United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and the UN special envoy on the Middle East have strongly condemned today’s arson attack in the West Bank that killed a Palestinian child and left the child’s parents severely injured.

“The Secretary-General strongly condemns today’s murder of a Palestinian child in the West Bank and calls for the perpetrators of this terrorist act to be promptly brought to justice,” reads a statement issued by his spokesperson in New York.

Continued failures to effectively address impunity for repeated acts of settler violence have led to another horrific incident involving the death of an innocent life, adds the statement. “This must end.”

The absence of a political process and Israel’s illegal settlement policy, as well as the harsh and unnecessary practice of demolishing Palestinian houses, have given rise to violent extremism on both sides, the statement continues.

“This [situation] presents a further threat to the legitimate aspirations of the Palestinian people for statehood, as well as to the security of the people of Israel. The Secretary-General urges both sides to take bold steps to return to the path of peace.”

Mr. Ban reiterates his call on all parties to ensure that tensions do not escalate further, leading to more loss of life, the statement concludes.

Earlier today, the United Nations special envoy on the Middle East today expressed his outrage over what he called a “heinous murder” and a “terrorist crime.”

“I am outraged by today’s vicious arson attack by suspected Jewish extremists in the Occupied West Bank village of Duma, near Nablus, which killed Palestinian toddler Ali, critically injured his mother and father, and injured his four-year old sibling,” the Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process, Nickolay Mladenov, said.

Joining in the “strong condemnations” issued by Israeli and Palestinian Governments and political leaders, the Special Coordinator also called for a “full and prompt investigation” to bring the perpetrators to justice.

“This heinous murder was carried out for a political objective. We must not permit such acts to allow hate and violence to bring more personal tragedies and to bury any prospect of peace. This reinforces the need for an immediate resolution of the conflict and an end to the occupation.”

Later today, the Security Council issued a statement to the press, condemning “in the strongest terms” the “vicious terrorist attack,” and underlining the need to bring the perpetrators of this “deplorable act” to justice.

Council members encouraged all sides to work to lower tension, reject violence, avoid all provocations, and seek a path toward peace.”


Related First One Through article:

UN Comments on the Murder of Innocents: Itamar and Duma


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Paul Gherkin is founder of the website FirstOneThrough, which is dedicated to educating people on Israel, the United States, Judaism and science in an entertaining manner so they speak up and take action. In a connected digital world, each person can be a spokesperson by disseminating news to thousands of people by forwarding articles or videos to people, or using the information to fight on behalf of a cause because In a connected digital world. YOU are FirstOneThrough.