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April 06, 2005

Return of the "Jewish Hezbollah"

In October 2004, syndicated columnist Thomas L. Friedman stunned many by referring to the Israeli far right as "the Jewish Hezbollah." (Does Friedman really believe that the Israeli far right is a semi-autonomous army nurtured by dictatorships to kill, kidnap, and destablize in cross-border raids?)

In yesterday's Boston Globe, Sam Allis also makes a false moral equation between Israeli extremists and a terrorist group in his review of a PBS "Frontline" segment about Israeli extremists:

A rough symmetry within their respective societies between Israeli extremists bent on murder and Hamas, the Palestinian terrorist group, is inescapable. And while Hamas has been far more lethal thus far, the impending threat from these Israelis looms ominous.

At the end of the day, there is reason to be worried about Israeli terrorism as well as its Palestinian counterpart, each primed to explode if and when the two sides ever near a true settlement.

Allis seems to suggest it is coincidence that Hamas has "thus far" been more lethal than Israeli extremists; but in fact, the terrorist group has been more lethal because there is no "symmetry," rough or otherwise, between them and Israeli extremists.

Hamas was given free reign by the Palestinian Authority to carry out its deadly attacks on Israeli civilians, with the support of a majority of Palestinians. Its suicide bombers are celebrated by "martyr posters" in Palestinian schools and streets.

There is no such free reign or support for any fringe Israeli extremists supposedly "bent on murder." As PBS acknowledges, "most Israelis reacted with shock and horror" to news that two Israelis set out to bomb a Palestinian schoolyard, and "a small minority refused to condemn them"

Posted by GI at April 6, 2005 10:47 AM