Joel Mowbray
With a suicide bombing targeting Israeli innocents at the exact moment Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon was discussing upcoming peace talks with President George W. Bush, the myth that suicide bombings are random, spontaneous acts should be laid bare. Much like the Netanya Passover Masscre during the Arab Summit last month, this week’s attack was intentionally timed to steal headlines worldwide, not the sort of action cooked up by some deranged loner. Discussing the day’s mass murder at the Tel Aviv pool hall on MSNBC, Palestinian Authority (PA) representative Hassan Abdel Rahman commented, “People are not born suicide bombers; they become suicide bombers.” He is absolutely right, and the Palestinian terrorists groups, from Hamas to Islamic Jihad to the PA, collectively share the blame for manufacturing suicide bombers, though Arafat is unifying force behind it all. The most compelling evidence for a terrorist infrastructure fostering and directing suicide bombers exists not in Sharon’s new 100-page report-—which contains incriminating documents, to be sure-—but in the geographical origin of the suicidal murderers themselves. If the suicide bombers are, as some Arafat apologists have claimed, truly self-motivated and spurred on solely by Israeli “aggression” and “occupation,” then suicide bombers would have come equally from all over the West Bank and Gaza Strip. However, that has not been the case. Israeli soldiers conducted their most concerted military operations in Jenin because nearly half of all suicide bombers had come from that single refugee camp. That means that a small spot on the map produced almost as many suicide bombers as the rest of the West Bank, combined. More telling still is that not one suicide bomber has come from Gaza, despite that region ’s proportionately more radical fringes, for the simple reason that the supplies necessary for human bombs cannot get into walled-off Gaza. Since suicide bombings are clearly not some grassroots phenomenon, that begs the question: what’s causing young Palenstinians to blow themselves up? Suicide bombings do not have historical underpinnings in Palestinian society, as the first one did not occur until 1993-—the same year as the Oslo peace accord. Arafat has meticulously created an “education” system designed to prepare children barely out of the cradle for the grave. Children are inculcated, from a very young age, into Arafat’s culture of the death, which paves the way for teenagers to graduate into the cult of martyrdom. Kids are brainwashed to hate the “Zionist enemy” and are constantly instructed that “Palestine” is not just the West Bank and Gaza, but all of Israel. The end result is a seething anti-Semitism hanging in the air in Palestinian schools, easing the otherwise difficult task of persuading healthy teens to commit suicide. The biggest hurdle for terrorists in recruiting is Islam itself. The Koran forbids both suicide and the killing of innocents, the essential ingredients of all suicide bombings. The end-run around the first obstacle is to replace “suicide” with “martyrdom.” In recruiting adolescents, terrorists promise not only a Paradise with 72 virgins-—who knows if they make a similar pledge of 72 studs for girls, but a place for their buddies as well. Arafat praises “martyrs,” and their families are financially rewarded by Iraqis and Saudis alike. Martyrdom is seen as the highest echelon in society, an honor bestowed on the very lucky few. Palestinian children as young as seven or eight actually dream of someday blowing themselves up. Ironically, though, terrorists do not recruit suicidal youths, just those that they can convince to die for the cause. Arafat and other terrorists respond to the prohibition of killing innocents by dehumanizing Jews, Nazi-style. Schools systemically brainwash impressionable young minds to believe unquestioningly that no Jew is innocent. Throughout the Arafat-controlled Palestinian media, Jews are vilified as “the oppressor” that must be defeated in order to claim honor and avenge the humiliation of occupation. Blowing one’s self up for the honor of “Palestine” is such a privilege that recruiters are able to pluck most of their human cruise missiles from stable, middle- and upper-middle-class families—-the very people who are least likely to fully suffer from the indignities endured by other Palestinians. The common thread tying together all these explosive elements is Arafat, who has deliberately cultivated an environment where radical and violent anti-Semitism flourishes. Though he built his bloody career with a secular message, he has exploited “Jihad” as a political tool whenever it benefited him. Whether or not Arafat explicitly orders each homicide bombing is irrelevant; he ceaselessly promotes the atmosphere in which young Palestinians are inducted into the cult of martyrdom. Correcting the corrosive culture is the most important component in devising a long-term peace in the Mideast, which cannot happen until true democracy with reasonable leaders takes root in a new Palestinian state. Peace simply cannot become a reality with Arafat at the helm.

Joel Mowbray

Joel Mowbray, who got his start with Townhall.com, is an award-winning investigative journalist, nationally-syndicated columnist and author of Dangerous Diplomacy: How the State Department Threatens America's Security.

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