No one can deny the fact that the horrific kidnapping and murder of the three Israeli teenagers is merely the most recent in dreadful, violent terrorist attacks by Palestinians against innocent Israelis. These unjustifiable acts are horrendous and despicable. But, in the same vein, to express shock and disbelief that Jews could be capable of an act as despicable as the murder of the Palestinian teenager or the beating of another young man is disingenuous. While these are extreme acts, they are not unique. As innocent Israelis have been the victims of terror, so many innocent Palestinians have suffered over the years.
These latest incidents will draw attention because of the timing and the particularly violent nature of the acts and I have no doubt that those who committed these acts will be brought to justice as they should be. But, the truth is that the conflict has produced daily acts of intimidation, humiliation and physical abuse of Palestinians by Jews just as it has produced so many horrendous acts of terror against Jews by Palestinians. While we may be sickened by what we have read in recent days, we can’t take it out of the context of the cycle of violence, oppression and violent calls for revenge. We should be saddened and deeply pained. But, we shouldn’t be surprised.
This piece, appearing in Ha’aretz yesterday, needs to be read: