Nothing can be said or done that might pacify, mollify or ameliorate the decades of venom preached, taught and practiced by Jew-hating Middle Easterners, and not a few anti-Semitic Westerners.
Secretary of State Colin Powell said last week that the withdrawal of Israeli "settlers" from Gaza was part of the "road map" that should lead to the withdrawal by Israel from other territories it has held to bolster its security. Israel has withdrawn from land it has held for its own security under U.S. pressure many times before. In return, Israel has received nothing except more death and destruction from those who will be satisfied with nothing short of its elimination.
In Palestinian schools and in Muslim schools in Pakistan, the curriculum continues to be about "jihad" and martyrdom. In a Sept. 10, 2004, sermon carried on Palestinian TV, Sheikh Ibrahim Mudeiras, who is said to be a young cleric identified with the terrorist group Hamas, said, "There is no one in the world who loves the Jews . because they destroy everything and everyone wants to take vengeance on the Jews, to take vengeance on those pigs. And that day will come when we are victorious over them."
Such language shows that nothing short of the extermination of all Jews and supporters of Israel will satisfy Osama bin Laden and his followers. There can be no negotiations and no accommodation with such people. The objective of the West must be to defeat and eliminate them.
One potentially positive development is the signing of a petition by more than 2,500 Muslim intellectuals from 23 countries calling on the United Nations to ban the use of religion for incitement to violence. Why only the U.N.? Why not petition the Arab League and the governments of the petitioners? Still, it's a start and a serious counterpoint to Osama bin Laden's latest taped pronouncements.
Cal Thomas is co-author (with Bob Beckel) of the book, "Common Ground: How to Stop the Partisan War That is Destroying America".
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