Israel: Palestinian Authority is Inciting Terrorism

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JERUSALEM, Israel -- Seven years after a Palestinian terrorist killed 17 Israelis - most of whom were teenagers or young adults - on a crowded bus in Haifa, some of the victims' fathers say a new generation of Palestinians is still being encouraged to carry out similar attacks.

Ron Kehrmann's 17-year-old daughter Tal died in the March 5, 2003 terror attack.

"At quarter past two on March 5, the terrorist detonated himself and exploded the bus," Kehrmann recalled.

"In order to get to a genuine peace and not a diplomatic one, things have to be changed and one of the things is incitement," he said.

Glorifying Terrorism

Kehrmann says that when the Palestinian Authority glorifies terrorists, it sends the wrong message to impressionable children.

"You take a small kid, it's like clay, you can make it good or you can make it bad," he said.

Itamar Marcus, director of the Palestinian Media Watch, exposed the ways terrorists are put on a pedestal.

"The glorification by the Palestinian Authority is the most horrific message," Marcus said. "When we talk about peace, it totally undermines peace."  

"It tells Palestinians all you have to do to be a hero in our society is to kill an Israeli or a Jew," he continued. "And this has to be eliminated if there's going to be any serious peace process."

The most blatant example of praising the acts of terrorists recently was a square named after Dalal Mughrabi, a Palestinian terrorist who led an attack that killed 37 Israelis in the worst act in Israel's history.

"We've had (Palestinian President) Abbas defending the square that was named after the terrorist," Marcus said. "So from the highest levels of Palestinian society, Palestinians are being given the message that killing is something that turns you into a hero."

Video footage of Abu Ala, a high ranking Palestinian leader, shows him praising Mughrabi on Palestinian television.

Marcus says these messages impress Palestinian children.

A Change of Heart is Crucial

The first round of U.S. mediated talks between Israelis and Palestinians began this weekend, the U.S. State Department confirmed.

"The talks were serious and wide-ranging," the State Department said in a statement

"Both parties are taking some steps to help create an atmosphere that is conducive to successful talks, including President Abbas' statement that he will work against incitement of any sort, and Prime Minister (Benjamin) Netanyahu's statement that there will be no construction at the Ramat Shlomo project for two years," the statement read.

A Palestinian spokesman told CBN News the charges of incitement are only an Israeli ploy to shift the focus of those negotiations.

Meanwhile, Israeli Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon says without a change of heart, genuine peace will remain illusive.

"This is what we need to see, a real reconciliation and not just an artificial state being built which may just instead of stabilizing the situation, make it just worse," Ayalon said.

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CBN News
Chris Mitchell

Chris Mitchell

CBN News Middle East Bureau Chief

In a time where the world's attention is riveted on events in the Middle East, CBN viewers have come to appreciate Chris Mitchell's timely reports from this explosive region of the world. Mitchell brings a Biblical and prophetic perspective to these daily news events that shape our world.