Hatred of Israel was reported motive for CA attack, but US press politely ignores the story

One of the San Bernardino killers hated Israel. Israeli newspapers and foreign papers are making much more of this story than the mainstream US press.  The Jerusalem Post has the story:

The father of one of the San Bernardino killers told an Italian newspaper on Sunday that his son, Sayed Rizan Farook, had an obsessive hatred of Israel that underscored his Islamic radicalism and allegiance to the ideals of Islamic State….

The senior Farook, in an interview with Italian newspaper La Stampa, … confirmed that his son spoke of Islamic State (noting, “Who doesn’t these days?”) and “prescribed to the ideals outlined by IS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi,” which included hating Israel.

“‘Be patient,’” he tried to tell his son. “In two years, Israel won’t exist anymore. Geopolitics is changing in Russia, China and America too.”

“Nobody wants the Jews. What use is it to fight? We have tried it and we lost. Israel does not fight with weapons, but rather with politics.’”

[The original in Italian is translated: “Nobody wants the Jews there.”]

Why isn’t this story getting more attention in the U.S.? Because it leads to the inevitable statement, “America is being attacked because of its support for Israel.” That interpretation can get a reporter fired. And so the accounting of the damage this hatred causes in the United States is never done.

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That link was denied after the 9/11 attacks. Osama bin Laden himself said that Palestine was an important motivation for him. Mickey Kaus said the press was downplaying this truth because it might hurt the US-Israel relationship:

It’s obvious–that Israel is partly the issue–yet a lot of effort seems to go into appearing to deny it, or into obscuring it, or at least into not saying it plainly. More than aversion to cliché seems to motivate these contortions. And this motive seems obvious too–it is the fear that admitting the truth might lead to an attempted appeasement of radical Islamic terrorists through abandonment of our ally. Yet, as far as I can see, nobody anywhere near the political mainstream, aside from Robert Novak, is talking about abandoning or weakening the US-Israeli alliance.

Later the 911 Commission also downplayed the motivation, though it did acknowledge it. JTA, 2004:

[The report] shows that several of the hijackers, as well as Al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden, were motivated in part by hatred of Israel and anger over the support it receives from the United States…

“In his interactions with other students,” the leader of the hijackers, Mohammed Atta, “voiced virulently anti-Semitic and anti-American opinions, ranging from condemnations of what he described as a global Jewish movement centered in New York City that supposedly controlle! d the financial world and the media, to polemics against governments o f the Arab world,” the report says.

Bear in mind that Robert Kennedy was killed in Los Angeles 47 years ago while campaigning for the Democratic nomination for the presidency also in some measure because a crazed killer did not like American support for Israel. Associated Press, 1989, based on a David Frost interview of the killer:

Sirhan Sirhan, in his first television interview, said he felt betrayed by Senator Robert F. Kennedy’s support for Israel in the 1967 Arab-Israeli war and said he killed Mr. Kennedy out of concern for the Palestinians.

Again: We never get an accounting of the damage the special relationship causes. All these killers are unhinged, but they are focused on a real issue.

Palestinian sources: 13-year-old killed in clash with IDF near Bethlehem

PALESTINIANS RUN after IDF troops fired tear gas during clashes after a demonstration in Nabi Saleh. (photo credit:REUTERS)


RAMALLAH, West Bank – A Palestinian teenager was killed on Monday in a clash with Israeli soldiers near the West Bank town of Bethlehem, a Palestinian hospital source said.

Violence in the West Bank and east Jerusalem has intensified in the past few weeks and the teenager’s reported death was the latest in a series of incidents that has raised fears of wider escalation.

A Bethlehem hospital said a 13-year-old boy identified as Abdel-Rahman Abeidallah of the nearby al-Aidah refugee camp died of a bullet wound to the heart.

The IDF had no initial information and a spokeswoman said she was checking for details.

Recent bloodshed has included a drive-by shooting that killed an Israeli couple in the West Bank on Thursday, a stabbing attack that killed two Israelis in east Jerusalem on Saturday and an arson attack that killed a Palestinian toddler and his parents in July.

Other incidents involving Palestinian stone-throwers and Israeli security forces continued without respite on Monday.

On Sunday, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met security chiefs to discuss more action to tackle the rising violence in east Jerusalem and the West Bank. 

Netanyahu said on Sunday that the new measures would include speeding up the razing of homes of Palestinian attackers and banning those who incite violence from Jerusalem’s Old City.

Israeli Troops Beat Palestinian Minister to Death at Ramallah Protest

Israel Defends Crackdown as ‘Riot Dispersal’

55-year-old Palestinian Authority cabinet minister Ziad Abu Ein was killed today during a protest march in Ramallah, when Israeli troops arrived on the scene and beat him to death.

Abu Ein was choked and beaten with rifle butts during the crackdown and reportedly suffered a stroke on the scene. He was rushed to a nearby Palestinian hospital but died shortly thereafter.

westbank-israelThough the entire killing was not caught on tape, video of the early moments of the crackdown on the protest were shown by Sky News,which included an Israeli soldier putting his hands around Abu Ein’s throat.

The protesters were complaining about the expansion of Israeli settlements on Palestinian land, and was carried out entirely on Palestinian territory in the occupied West Bank, with a march to farmland illegally seized by settlers to plant olive trees. Israeli officials defended the crackdown as simply using standard riot dispersal methods.

The European Union and United Nations are both demanding an independent investigation into the killing, though the Israeli government insisted that the only probe will be an internal one by the Israeli military.

The killing is being called an assassination by some Palestinian officials, though it seems more to be business as usual for the occupation forces, who kill Palestinians at protests with alarming regularity. The death is fueling calls from PA officials to end security cooperation with the Israeli military.

by Jason Ditz

Palestinian Unity: Hamas, Fatah Agree to End Years of Division

Factions Aim to Form Unity Government in Five Weeks

Years of on-again, off-again talks between the two primary Palestinian factions, Hamas and Fatah, have ended with a formal accord to end years of hostility, and a goal to form a unity government in the Palestinian Authority within five weeks.

westbankThe final deal was signed in Gaza City today, after recent talks went deep into the night, and Hamas PM Ismail Haniyeh declared the “era of discord is ended.”

The most recent Palestinian elections came in 2006, when Hamas defeated Fatah by a surprisingly large margin, winning a significant number of seats in the legislative council.

Under pressure from the US, Fatah leader Mahmoud Abbas ultimately refused to recognize the results, and in the ensuing conflict Fatah took the West Bank, while Hamas took the Gaza Strip.

Since then, the two factions have remained at odds, and managed their respective territory independently. The lack of Palestinian unity has often been cited as a reason why they have not achieved statehood, though since the unity announcement today Israeli officials have suggested the deal, and not the lack of one, is the new excuse for statehood to be deferred.

US ‘Disappointed’ by Palestinian Unity

State Dept: Reconciliation Could Complicate Peace Talks

The US State Department has issued a statement today declaring themselves“troubled” and “disappointed” by the news that the Palestinian factions Fatah and Hamas have reached a reconciliation agreement, ending years of violent acrimony. westbank

Officially, the State Department presented this as a problem that “affects peace talks” and could prevent the extension of the talks beyond the deadline of April 29, though no one seriously believed an extension was coming anyhow.

The reality is that dividing the Palestinians has been a fairly long-standing US policy, and the Fatah-Hamas split after the 2006 elections came in no small part because of US lobbying for Fatah leader Mahmoud Abbas to ignore the results.

The State Department had effectively failed at salvaging the peace talks weeks ago, and seems to be hoping to spin this unity deal as their excuse.

by Jason Ditz

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