We spoke in The Hague when the International Court of Justice presumed to rule on the legitimacy of Israel's fence building. We addressed political leaders who came to Israel to see for themselves and we spoke to visiting United Nations officials who did not really want to see for themselves (since they already knew everything they needed to know) but were somehow snookered (with notable lack of enthusiasm) into meeting Israeli victims of terror. We spoke - by invitation - to visiting journalists on their various 48 hour "in depth" flying visits to the scenes of Israel's "crimes". We write, speak, demonstrate and keep peppering away as best we can to make a simple point. Simple, that is, to people who have an open mind on the absolute right of Israelis to protect their children, homes and society.
The point: the security fence is a defensive measure which brings no happiness to anyone, least of all to Israelis, and the inconvenience and disruption which the extraordinarily expensive construction delivers to the lives of Palestinian Arabs is trivial, trivial, compared with the price paid by families like ours - the injury and death of loved ones at the hands of Palestinian Arab barbarians. The fence is the least of several evils. It saves innocent lives on both sides, every hour, every day. The way we see things, anyone in doubt on this suffers from a profound case of self-imposed moral blindness.
Have we had an impact? Not really. Perhaps because we were speaking English and Hebrew. Now let's pay attention to someone who takes a different tack.
Ramadan Shalah is not exactly a household name in this part of the world, but his occasional utterances are noted by the media. When we speak of Palestinian Arab barbarians, the dapper Ramadan Shallah, one of the numerous terror suits residing in the democratic paradise of Syria, is the sort of barbarian we have in mind. The man stands at the head of a gang of thugs called PIJ - Palestinian Islamic Jihad. Variously called Sallah, Salah and Shalah, he has been on the FBI's Most Wanted Terrorists list since February 24, 2006. During the Jewish festival of Passover earlier this year, his colleagues carried out a deadly "strategic" attack on an occupied Zionist felafel stand in Tel-Aviv. Nine people including the teenage nephew of friends in our neighbourhood died.
Shallah's cowardly gutter-dwellers also tried claiming credit for the 2001 massacre of restaurant patrons in Jerusalem in August 2001. Unfortunately for them, their blood-lust had to take a back seat to Hamas that day because it turned out their purported involvement in the Sbarro bombing was pure public relations , an exercise in jihadist fantasy without a factual basis. PIJ have actually carried more terror murders than Hamas over the years. In 2005, during a period the media called quiet and "relatively free of acts of terrorism", Shallah's PIJ carried out five lethal bombing attacks within Israel, and two more in 2006.
We know these things because the August 9, 2001 massacre took the life of our fifteen year old daughter.
If slick, sick, well-funded global terrorism has a face, it's Ramadan Shallah's face. That face appeared on the television station operated by Lebanon's curse, Hizbullah, less than a week ago. On 11th November 2006, Ramadan Salah scored a long televised interview on Al-Manar, an especially vile media outlet based in Lebanon and funded since 1991 by the revolution-minded Iranian mullahs. We don't watch Al-Manar. Nor do we recommend that anyone else tunes in to it. But the analysts at one of Israel's ever-vigilant anti-terror groups do and did. Their report, online here, includes streaming video of Ramadan Shallah's contribution to a greater, more-in-depth understanding of what the Israeli security barrier is about. According to Shallah, a man who knows from terror:
- Israel's security fence was and is important obstacle to the terror organizations. (He calls them resistance groups so we'll paraphrase.)
- The bombing of Israeli civilians is the Palestinian people's “strategic choice”.
- Palestine terrorism is meant to “create a balance of force and deterrence” in the campaign against a superior enemy.
- The jihadist terror organizations have every intention of continuing these bombing attacks on ordinary Israeli civilians.
- The timing and the possibility of implementing these terror attacks from Judea and Samaria (which is not the name he gives to the region) depend on certain external factors. “For example,” he said, “there is the separation fence, which is an obstacle to the resistance. If it were not there the situation would be entirely different.”
- The last few years have witnessed a reduction in the number of terror bombings. Among other factors, this is due to the still-incomplete construction of Israel's security fence. [Our note: try to find a journalist from a brand-name media outlet who will admit this.]
- Though people from PIJ and other similar "resistance" groups continue to search for the security fence's weak spots, the security fence hampers their attempts to slip their bombers into Israel.
Sorry, don't bother clicking on that last link. There's no link there because it's a sort of joke. There is no such vision. There is no such plan. There is no such hope. Palestinian Islamic Jihad is entirely dedicated to hatred, to racist crimes, to killing and maiming for terror's sake.
Don't you just wish you had people like Ramadan Salah on your television screen?