Abbas approves assistance to “martyrs” and then condemns suicide bomb

December 06, 2005

* This dispatch contains a mixture of items relating to Middle East politics


1. Kaare Kristiansen dies
2. “A mother weeps”
3. Preventing a much bigger tragedy
4. The real victims
5. Bomber “fooled” by Islamic Jihad
6. Gun battle in Jenin after suicide celebration
7. Abbas approves assistance to “martyrs” and then condemns suicide bomb
8. Palestinian Authority continues to glorify terrorists
9. Pope given a Palestinian passport
10. Palestinians fire longer-range missiles into Israel

11. Israel unable to stop Iran nukes
12. The Islam channel’s peace and unity conference in London
13. W.H. Smith sells hate books alongside Harry Potter
14. Osama Bin Laden tried to recruit Robert Fisk
15. Sa’ad Hariri supports Hizbullah
16. “Pak-Israel friendship association” launched
17. “Coalition of the Shilling” (By Mark Steyn, National Review, Dec. 19 2005 edition)

[Note by Tom Gross]


Kaare Kristiansen, the Norwegian politician who resigned from the Nobel Peace Prize Committee in 1994 to protest the decision to award that year’s prize to Yasser Arafat, has died at the age of 85. Kristiansen accused the Palestinian leader of being “tainted with violence, terrorism and bloodshed.”

In December 1994, on a visit to Jerusalem, Kristiansen called an impromptu press conference at the Hilton Hotel, “to apologize to the people of Israel” for the fact that the Nobel Peace Prize was being awarded to Arafat.

“Arafat had yet to speak a word of peace and reconciliation to his own people in their own language,” said Kristiansen, a Norwegian Christian, who announced he was resigning for the Nobel Prize Committee in protest.

In the years that followed, on several occasions he called upon the Nobel Peace Prize Committee to “publicly deplore” its decision to grant Arafat the peace prize, which he said had now been debased for ever.

Last year, following Arafat’s death, Kristiansen warned Israelis about repeating the same mistakes they had made in the mid-90s, saying they should not be over-optimistic about the extent to which Arafat’s successor, Mahmoud Abbas, genuinely wanted long-term coexistence with Israel.

(For more on Kaare Kristiansen, please see the dispatch “Former Nobel Committee member: Revoke Arafat’s prize,” December 5, 2001.)


I wasn’t going to write about yesterday’s suicide bomb in the coastal city of Netanya because I thought other media would report on it, and report on it accurately. But the media today, particularly in Europe, have not.

Some media today ignore it completely. For example, the leading French newspaper Le Monde, as far as I could tell from reading the paper twice today, ignores the Netanya bomb completely. (In the midst of the rioting throughout France last month, Le Monde ran length two-and-half page spreads attacking Israel, both on the front page and inner pages devoting more space to this one day than to the rioting sweeping France.)

Other European papers today mention the Netanya bomb in only one line for example Mlada Fronta Dnes, a leading newspaper in the Czech Republic, a new European Union member state.

And other papers, while reporting on the bomb, focus sympathetically on the bomber’s mother, while all but ignoring the victims or their relatives. The (London) Daily Telegraph, for example, run photos not just of the “proud” bomber, but of his mother, with the seemingly sympathetic caption that she “weeps for the son she lost”. BBC online, in their article titled “Israel raids follow blast,” also run a picture of Abu Saada’s weeping family, and not the victim’s mothers.

Both the BBC website and the CNN correspondent John Vause on air, repeatedly said yesterday (the BBC in the article and in a special box) that only “two people” were killed in the suicide attack on the same Netanya shopping mall last July. In fact five people (including two 16-year-old girls, and a women aged 31) were killed in that attack, including one of the “Forgotten Rachels”. This is the kind of “mistake” made daily by the BBC and CNN, when reporting on Israel. That both organizations made the same mistake suggests they are parroting the inaccurate reporting of news agencies such as Reuters, as if that reporting were fair and accurate and did not need checking.


Yesterday’s suicide bomber attack outside a busy shopping center, which killed five Israelis and injured over 60, would have been much worse had the bomber not been spotted by Shoshi Atiya, a pregnant Israeli policewoman, who shouted at security guards not to let him enter the mall.

Ms. Atiya said she shouted: “Terrorist, terrorist! Then people started running, crossing the street, running in every direction.”

“I shouted and looked straight into his eyes at the moment when the bomb went off,” she added as she recovered from her injuries in a hospital bed.

She said: “One of the security guards in the mall held his shoulder and I shouted ‘forget the shoulder, grab his hand’ because I saw he was holding it inside the bag.” The security guard (Haim Amram) along with four shoppers were killed by the 15lb of high explosive.

The glass-and-marble facade of the shopping mall was stained with swirls of blood as far as 60 feet from the site of the explosion. Body parts were found as far as 300 feet away. But then most European newspaper readers today won’t know that.


The dead were:

Kinan Tzuami, 20, had traveled from Petah Tikva to eat at the mall. When Kinan and his friends were leaving the mall he remembered that he has left his drink behind. His friend went to get the drink and moments later the explosion took place.

Eliyah Rosen, 38, a mother of three children aged 12, 9, and 5. She had traveled to the mall to buy new clothes in preparation for her new job as a Projects manager.

Alexandra Grimatzky, 65, immigrated to Israel from the Ukraine in 1997. She leaves behind an only son.

Daniel Golani, 45, of Nahariya, who is survived by his daughters, aged 14 and 17.

Haim Amram, 26, of Netanya, who is credited with bravely saving the lives of many innocent people yesterday.


The family of the suicide bomber, Lotfi Amin Abu Saada, 21, has claimed that Islamic Jihad tricked him into blowing himself up.

His mother said “My son is a poor soul. He doesn’t know anything about this, he was never jailed and he never participated in demonstrations.”

A senior al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade commander (the military wing of Fatah) last night also welcomed the suicide bombing, describing it as “an act of heroic martyrdom”.


Last night Islamic Jihad held a “victory celebration” rally in Jenin. During the rally clashes erupted between Palestinian Authority police and Islamic Jihad members.

Reports suggest armed locals fired at Palestinian police officers who had tried to prevent them from publicly celebrating the suicide bombing, fearing film of such celebrations might find their way onto international networks which are not completely anti-Israel, such as Fox news.

After past terror attacks inside Israel, groups of Palestinians have been filmed taking to the streets in celebration and handing out chocolate and candies to well-wishers.


According to the Palestinian newspaper al-Haya al-Jadidha, Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas has approved budgetary assistance to the families of suicide bombers.

Each “martyr’s” family will receive a monthly stipend of at least $250 from the Palestinian Authority (a not inconsiderable amount for many Palestinians). The budget for families of martyrs, prisoners and the wounded could reach $100 million, according to al-Haya al-Jadidha.

Abbas condemned yesterday’s suicide bomb, saying it “causes great damage to our commitment to the peace process,” and that it “harmed Palestinian interests” at the present time. He did not say that murdering people is wrong.

It is thought that 30 per cent of the Palestinian Authority budget comes from international donations, including a hefty amount from European Union taxpayers. Ian Solomon, a subscriber to this email list, asks: “If the situation were reversed and the Israeli government funded stipends to the families of the London Underground bombers, I think that would be pretty big news.”


Whilst some western media were quick to emphasize the condemnation of the Netanya suicide bomb by Mahmoud Abbas and by Saeb Erekat, the Palestinian Authority continues to glorify terrorists.

Al-Moayed Bihokmillah Al-Agha murdered five Israelis in a suicide attack in December 2004 at the Rafah crossing. Yet when the Rafah crossing was re-opened last week, the Palestinian Authority renamed it “in honor of Shahid (martyr) Al-Agha.”

Palestinian Media Watch comments that by erecting such a sign the PA sends a “powerful message to Palestinians, emphasizing once again that terrorists are heroes.”

A Fatah website still shows a clip of Al-Agha a year after the attack.

As noted in previous dispatches, this continues a pattern of glorifying terrorists by the official Palestinian leadership. For example, a soccer tournament is named after the suicide terrorist who murdered 31 people at a Passover celebration at the Park Hotel in Netanya. And a girls’ school near Hebron was named by the PA Ministry of Education after a woman terrorist who murdered 37 people, mainly Jews. A poetry collection by the PA Ministry of Culture is also named in honor of the suicide terrorist who killed 21 at a restaurant in Haifa.

If anyone wants to see the way in which a three and half year old girl is brainwashed to kill Jews they should watch this particularly shocking video from Memri:
Or at:


During Mahmoud Abbas’s visit to the Vatican on Sunday, he presented Pope Benedict XVI with a Palestinian passport. The document was accompanied by an invitation to visit “Jerusalem and all the Holy Places.”

The passport, which was handed over during a 20-minute meeting, bore the name of the Vatican City. The 10-man Palestinian delegation also gave the pope a copper image of the Virgin Mary, wearing the traditional Palestinian headscarf (except they forgot to mention that it wasn’t traditional at the time that Mary, who was born a Jew, lived in ancient Israel.)


Palestinian militias have begun deploying and using an enhanced Kassam missile. Israeli military sources said the missile had a larger diameter and longer range than previous Kassams.

On Sunday, Palestinian terrorists fired at least six enhanced Kassam missiles from the northern Gaza Strip at villages in Israel which (while Israel had maintained a troop presence in Gaza) had been out of range of the previous type of Palestinian rockets. Officials said several of the missiles landed around the southern town of Netivot. At least one Israeli civilian was injured.


Israel has been deemed as militarily incapable of halting Iran’s nuclear weapons program. A new report by the U.S. Army War College claims that Israel does not have the military capability to locate and destroy Iranian nuclear assets. The report said the Israel Air Force cannot operate at such long distances from its bases.

The report, titled “Getting Ready for a Nuclear-Ready Iran,” says: “The Israeli Air Force has formidable capabilities but Israel has no aircraft carriers and it cannot use airbases in other Middle East states. Therefore its operational capabilities are reduced when the targets are located far from its territory.”

On Sunday, Israeli Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Dan Halutz warned that diplomatic pressure would not stop Iran’s nuclear weapons program, and that Iran would soon become a nuclear power


I attach an email. The sender is usually reliable.

From: C (name withheld)
Sent: Monday, December 05, 2005 4:41 PM
Subject: The Islam Channel’s Peace and Unity Conference in London

I went to the ‘Peace and Unity Conference’ yesterday and last night in London. It was shocking and terrifying. It had been advertised as a celebration of the MiddleEastern/Asian community in music and culture, but was a disgraceful Jihadists’ rally.

25,000 angry young Muslims were whipped up to cries of ‘Allahu Akhbar’ by the likes of Yvonne Ridley, Imran Khan, various crazed Israel-loathing sheikhs and, of course, George Galloway.

One thing that shocked me most was Khan’s comment that poor Germany was so humiliated by Versailles that they could not be blamed for their rage, hence how can we condemn the 9/11 bombers? Even the organisers said into the mike after he had finished that they distanced themselves from his remark that ‘9/11 was a neocon conspiracy to have an excuse to start a new Crusade.’

A sheikh said that the greatest atrocity of the 20th century was ‘Jews from eighty countries being brought in 1947 to Palestine to drive Muslim brothers and sisters from their homes and to kill and torture them.’ He added that he can barely say the word ‘Israel,’ as such a country does not exist. All of this to ecstatic cries from the audience of mostly British-born young Muslims.

Gallloway exhorted the crowd to ‘riot on every street of Britain’ and Ridley defamed our fine British police force in ‘jackboot Britain.’

Horrible stuff.
Regards, C


In the dispatch “London Mayor Ken Livingstone may be Jewish: ‘I could be a self-hater, couldn’t I?’” (November 30, 2005), it was reported that the website of British supermarket Tesco had been offering for sale several anti-Semitic and far right-publications.

It was revealed this week that another British high street giant, W.H. Smith, has also been selling anti-Semitic texts on its website. The books available included the “Protocols of the Elders of Zion” and “The Jews and Their Lies.”

The W.H. Smith website offered more club card points to anyone who bought a version of the “Protocols of the Elders of Zion” than for the latest “Harry Potter” book. has decided to ignore the precedent set by Tesco and W.H. Smith (who have both now removed the offensive books), and is refusing to remove anti-Semitic books from its website. A spokesman for Amazon said “unless a title is illegal, our policy is to offer the widest selection of titles.”


In an interview on Dec. 3 with the BBC, the Independent’s notorious award-winning journalist Robert Fisk, described how Osama Bin Laden attempted to recruit him.

Fisk told the BBC: “It was at the third meeting and when I arrived in his tent and he came over to me with a big smile which I didn’t like and said: ‘One of our brothers had a dream that you arrived on a horse dressed as a Muslim Imam and wearing a turban this means you are a true Muslim.’

“I felt at once that he was trying to make a recruit of me and that he thought that because I was a fair reporter that he would be able to bring me across to his side. I was quite horrified by this and tried to think how best to reply, because after all I was surrounded by al-Qaeda people.

“What I said was: ‘I am not a Muslim. I am a journalist and my job is to tell the truth.’ He realised I was rejecting him and said: ‘But that is the same as being a good Muslim.’ I breathed a big sigh of relief.”

To see more on Osama bin Laden’s admiration for Robert Fisk, please see the dispatch “Osama Bin Laden praises Robert Fisk (& other items)” (November 4, 2004).


Sa’ad Hariri, the son of assassinated Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri, has said he supports Hizbullah.

In an address to the Arab and World Media Conference in Dubai, Hariri said “Hizbullah fought and is still fighting the Israeli occupiers and I endorse that.” He went on to say that “there is a need to sit down with Hizbullah and tackle some internal issues.”

UN Security Council Resolution 1559, which was adopted by the United Nations Security Council on September 2, 2004, calls on all Lebanese militias (including Hizbullah) to disband.


The offices of the “Pak-Israel Friendship Association” have been opened in Lahore. The President of the Association, Ghulam Gillani (who is an engineer) praised President Musharraf’s recent statements to support an independent, self-governed and sovereign Palestinian state.

Gillani also claimed high-ministerial relations with Israel would not effect Pakistan’s position on the Palestinian cause.

For more on Pakistan-Israel relations, please see the dispatch “President Musharraf to U.S. Jews: ‘Pakistan has no direct conflict with Israel’” (September 19, 2005)

I attach below an article by Mark Steyn from an upcoming print issue of the National Review. Steyn writes about “the grand harmonic convergence of all the world’s loser ideologies” against America since September 11, 2001.

-- Tom Gross



Coalition of the Shilling
All of Bush’s detractors sound the same: crazy.
By Mark Steyn
This piece appears in the December 19, 2005, issue of The National Review

My enemy’s enemy is my friend. But America has so many enemies they must occasionally feel they’ve got way too many friends. Consider, for example, Bashar al-Assad, Syria’s President-for-Life, at least for another week or two. Back in his dad’s day, Syria got the kid-glove treatment from the world’s A-list suck-ups: When Hafez al-Assad expired, President Clinton said he was “saddened” by it, and offered his “condolences” to “the Syrian people.” At least he didn’t go to the funeral Jacques Chirac did.

Alas, things have changed since Pop Assad’s day. Baby Assad, before his present eminence, was a London eye doctor, but you don’t have to be an ophthalmologist to see the writing on the wall. Instead of Clinton, Chirac, et al., he attracts George Galloway, British Member of Parliament and Saddamite shill. Speaking at the Assad National Library in Damascus in July, the British MP did his best to perk Junior up. In an interview afterward, Galloway said, “Syria is lucky to have Bashar al-Assad as her president.” All this went down so well they asked him back last month. And, speaking this time at Damascus University, he cooed, “All dignified people in the world, whether Arabs or Muslims or others with dignity, are very proud of the speech made by President Bashar al-Assad a few days ago here in Damascus.” I guess I missed that one.

But look who was also in town: my old friend David Duke. When I say “my old friend,” I don’t mean I’ve ever met the chap. But for some years I had several e-mail correspondents of a lefty persuasion who began with the assumption that I and other notorious right-wing extremists John Ashcroft, Rush Limbaugh, George Bush the Elder, Olympia Snowe, David Gergen were all buddies of David Duke’s, if not attached to him in a somewhat more vigorous manner.

Au contraire, he seems to have gone over to the Harold Pinter/Michael Moore side of things. In Damascus, speaking at the “Nation’s Tent” in Rawda Square, he took the line that any gush Galloway can get away with, he can gush away even better. “I have come to Syria to express my support to the Syrian people and their just stances,” he roared. “It’s the duty of every free man to reject the conspiracies and threats Syria is exposed to.” The free men of Syria would have risen to their feet, if there were any. Anyway, he was soon chattering away about America’s “Zionist-controlled mass media.”

Ever since September 11th, there’s been a grand harmonic convergence of all the world’s loser ideologies, from Islamic fundamentalism to Gallic condescension. By rights, a coalition that embraces hardline British socialists, American white supremacists, sophisticated European secularists, Neanderthal European fascists, misogynist Muslim theocrats, militant gay Canadians (really he’s a guy named Svend Robinson, who for years has been the gay mascot of the Palestinian Authority) . . . by rights this crowd should be as fractious as they come. But apparently they all get along swimmingly.

As you know, because the media parrot it incessantly, there were no links between al-Qaeda and Saddam, because he’s a scrupulously secular Baathist and they’re Islamists. Good thing those pro-gay pro-feminist Eurolefties making common cause with honor-killing sodomite-beheaders don’t demand the same level of intellectual coherence from their own coalition that they do from the terrorists. Does George Galloway feel even a wee bit squeamish that his speeches are indistinguishable from David Duke’s?

Yet even in a coalition that looks like one massive malfunction at a computer-dating agency not all wackos are equal. Vanity Fair’s James Wolcott is happy to hail George Galloway as “A Hero For Our Time,” yet he’s unlikely ever to accord the same status to David Duke for saying exactly the same things. History repeats itself: The pass the Western Left got for supporting the tragedy of Communism is extended effortlessly to their support for the farce of Islamofascism an enemy lacking even the dubious theoretical virtues of the Reds. But what does that matter? The Galloway-Duke alliance is the Little League version of the Hitler-Stalin pact, and they’ve got even bigger plans. As Galloway told his Syrian hosts:

“What your lives would be if from the Atlantic to the Gulf we had one Arab union all this land, 300 million people, all this oil and gas and water, occupied by a people who speak the same language, follow the same religions, listen to the same Umm Kulthum.... The Arabs would be a superpower in the world if they had this unity, instead of the shameful situation in which the Arabs find themselves today. . . . Hundreds of thousands are ready to fight the Americans in the Middle East, and in Latin America there is revolution everywhere. Fidel Castro is feeling young again. Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay, Bolivia, Ecuador, Chile are all electing left-wing governments that are challenging American domination. And in Venezuela, the hero Hugo Chavez has stood against them over and over and over again.”

Hey, and don’t forget Cindy Sheehan.

In the last 15 years we on the right were somehow prevailed upon to be awfully sporting about our friends on the left siding with the murderers and enslavers of half the world. Big mistake.

All notes and summaries copyright © Tom Gross. All rights reserved.