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September 28, 2004
Ooops -- Our Bad

After seventeen years of on-and-off intifadah, the Palestinians have slowly come to the realization that bombing civilians in pizzarias may not be the most effective way to generate sympathy for their cause:

When Abu Fahdi joined a Palestinian militant group and took up arms against Israel, he thought he was serving his people. Now he believes he did them only harm.

"We achieved nothing in all this time, and we lost so much," said the baby-faced 29-year-old, who, because of his status as a fugitive, insisted on being identified by a nickname meaning "father of Fahdi." "People hate us for that and wish we were dead."

Well, boo hoo, but when people shoot indiscriminately at civilian vehicles as Abu Fahdi confesses and blow up civilians on buses and in shops, they don't attract love from anyone except the Che Guevara fans of mass murder (of which there are far too many, admittedly). And if we had to choose between Abu Fahdi and his ilk of bombthrowers or the free civilians in Israel who don't spend their time supporting serial killers, the rational among us would prefer that the Fahdis were no longer around to trouble us.

The Los Angeles Times reports that many Palestinians now question their leadership and whether the intifadah was a big mistake. Two thirds polled in the West Bank and Gaza Strip now support a cease-fire instead of continued "military" action, reversing an earlier result. Note, however, that they don't favor suspending the civilian bombing and strafing because it's wrong -- just that it's been ineffective and made them look bad:

Although dogged resistance to the Israeli occupation helped keep the Palestinian hope for statehood in the world spotlight, many now believe that the visible public support for suicide bombings was a crucial error.

"In a post-9/11 world, that could only harm our cause," said Manasra, the Bethlehem governor.

At least it may be a start, although the Palestinians unleashed some forces that it may find impossible to withdraw. Syria and Iran fund Hamas and Islamic Jihad not out of overwhelming concern for the plight of the Palestinians but out of hatred for the Jews and the state of Israel. Also, even if the Palestinians reject the terrorism that have defined their entire strategy for decades, they have yet to reject the leader that designed, implemented, and maintained that strategy -- the disastrous Yasser Arafat. Between Arafat and the power of Syria and Iran, any effort to rid the territories of terrorists are doomed, and they know it.

The Palestinians sold their souls long ago to these demons. If they are to be rid of them, they will need to rise up and push them out of their midst -- and the effort will cost them dearly. When they undertake that mission, then we will know they are serious. Until then, the Abu Fahdis can wail all they want about how the world hates them, wringing their bloodstained hands for the press, but we will spare our sympathy for the women and children they have butchered.

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Posted by Ed Morrissey at September 28, 2004 6:19 AM

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» Terrorist Sees the Err in his Ways from
Now terrorists seem to believe that years spent trying explosives to your waist and finding the closest Israeli bus has not been good for talks between Palestinians and Israelis? Gee, I wonder how they came up with that notion. This story might be comi... [Read More]

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» Palestinians coming around? from Secure Liberty
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» Who Do Our Enemies Want to See Win? from Infidel Cowboy
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Tracked on September 28, 2004 11:26 AM

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