Diana West

"In order to defend the homeland from the terrorist Crusader attack," he wrote, according to MEMRI's online translation, "there is a need for people who yearn for Paradise, and the shortest way to Paradise is death for (the sake of) Allah."

Suicide killers haven't materialized in Iraq by the thousands, but a scattered few have murdered American soldiers. And, according to the grim tally of the Zionist Organization of America, 29 of the 39 Americans killed by Palestinian Arab terrorists since 1993 were murdered by Hamas. Such statistics make all the more distressing the fact that George W. Bush, a big-game terrorist-hunter himself, would be "deeply troubled" because the Israelis took aim at a big-game terrorist following post-summit terror attacks that left five Israeli soldiers dead.

Almost worse than the hypocrisy, however, is the illogic behind the president's stated reason: Mr. Bush was concerned, he said, that the Israeli action would impede official Palestinian efforts to fight terrorism. How it could be that drying up a poisonous source of terrorism could be a drain on any legitimate fight against terrorism is an argument for the mentally double-jointed. Without engaging in dangerous gymnastics, it's still easy to see that such thinking, taken seriously, would require the United States to cease all efforts to target Osama bin Laden.

Prime Minister Abbas has declared himself unable or unwilling to act against Palestinian terror groups; Israel, attacked again, must defend itself. In so doing, it is helping defend every other country threatened by Islamist terror.

The accelerated road map to a Palestinian state comes not as a hopeful result of any Palestinian reform; it comes as a weary concession to Palestinian terror. This is a dangerous precedent for the entire Western world. Even worse would be an Israeli concession on the right to self-defense. Look again to the maniacal words of Rantisi: "The enemies of Allah ... are cowards. They crave life, while Muslims crave martyrdom. The martyrdom operations (suicide murders) that shock can ensure that horror is sowed in the (enemies') hearts, and horror is one of the causes of defeat."

Life vs. martyrdom: an easy choice in the West. But in choosing life, we must defend it everywhere -- the only triumph there can be over Dr. Rantisi's horror.

Diana West

Diana West is the author of American Betrayal: The Secret Assault on Our Nation's Character (St. Martin's Press, 2013), and The Death of the Grown-Up: How America's Arrested Development Is Bringing Down Western Civilization (St. Martin's Press, 2007).