Is there a Lower Form of Life than a Suicide Bomber?
There is absolutely nothing like it in the entire world. A
creature nurtured on hate and with the support of large
portions of his community, is told to search out a large
crowd, men, women and children included. A walking bomb,
fitted with explosives and amplifying hardware like screws
and nails to make the results more gruesome, this creature
must walk into the crowd, where he will see before his own
eyes the innocent babes whom he will murder in a few moments
with a tremendous explosion. This creature will then
detonate this horrible bomb, which will certainly kill him
and, he and those who sent him hope, as many Jews as
There are many terrorist organizations throughout the world,
with all kinds of motives, high and low. There are
nonviolent protesters and those who destroy property. There
are, unfortunately, many who have no regard for the lives of
their enemies. But there are no others who have such a low
opinion of the value of human life that even their own means
little to them if losing it can destroy other lives.
Everything the Palestinians do these days, including their
violence, is calculated for its effect on world opinion.
International intervention is their main hope for securing
gains. They must believe that they can get some advantage
from subhuman acts such as suicide bombing. As long as the
international community does not publicly recoil from such
low acts, as long as such deeds are condemned only
"evenhandedly" -- with criticism of Israeli attempts at
defense in the same breath as the crimes of such creatures --
as long as it is not absolutely clear that such behavior
will bring upon them the condemnation of the entire
civilized world, those who have followed this path up until
now will continue. Such revulsion and condemnation is not a
tactic or a reward or a punishment for any side, but only a
basic human feeling that should be expressed by anyone with
a drop of humanity. It should be expressed firmly and loudly
with the confidence that only morally just consequences will
follow from morally necessary actions.
It is ludicrous for Arafat to accuse Israel of violating the
Oslo accords. The most basic premise of the agreements, the
key point that brought the late Yitzhak Rabin to shake
Arafat's hand after he said that he would not, was the
renunciation of violence. It was the commitment to
negotiations and political struggle, in contrast to the
previous violence, that converted the terrorist Arafat into
the "peace partner." Arafat is very obviously committed to
violence. The whole world must make it clear to him and to
whoever of his people who support it, that violence is not
an acceptable tool. This is the basic principle that
underlies the prime minister's insistence on no negotiations
Virtually all of Israel was and remains prepared to make
painful sacrifices for peace. This willingness is not
impressive to those Palestinians who want nothing less than
the dismantling of the State of Israel and possibly the
Jewish people as well.
These facts are painful and upsetting, but we must face the
facts and not live under illusions.
We remain firm in our conviction that if we embrace the
traditional path of Torah, Hashem will work out the solution
of this seemingly intractable problem.
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