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Describing Terrorists Differently in English and Arabic
Describing Terrorists Differently in English and Arabic
It’s what the Palestinian Authority and Wafa News Agency do very well.
By Hugh Fitzgerald
Both the Palestinian Authority Prime Minister, Mohamed Shtayyeh, and the Palestinian News Agency Wafa often offer two different versions – one in English and one in Arabic – of Israeli-Palestinian clashes.
More on this Janus-faced attempt to deceive the gullible West can be found here: “Palestinian prime minister supports and praises jihadists in Arabic,” Elder of Ziyon, March 9, 2023:
This morning [March 9] Israeli forces killed three Islamic Jihad terrorists, in responding to gunshots from their car. Pistols, rifles, explosives and IEDs were found in the car….
Police named Ahmed Fashafsha, 22, and Sufyan Fakhoury, 30, as the wanted Islamic Jihad operatives, and Nayef Malaysha, 25, as the third gunman, saying he had been released from an Israeli prison last month.
A local wing of the Islamic Jihad in Jaba’ confirmed the three members had been killed in what it called a “cowardly assassination operation.” It said the slain operatives and other Islamic Jihad gunmen had opened fire on Israeli forces.
Islamic Jihad openly admits that its militants fired first at the IDF forces.
There was no “assassination operation” by Israelis. The undercover border policemen had come not to kill but to arrest two suspects, and they fired on the three Palestinians in their car – including the two whom the undercover agents had originally been seeking — only after they, the Israelis, had come under fire. And the PIJ admitted that the gunmen “had opened fire” — meaning, had fired first, even as they stuck with their charge of a “cowardly assassination.”
However, as with every other case this year of Israeli forces killing Palestinian terrorists, the official Palestinian Wafa news agency doesn’t say a word about their affiliation or the circumstances. It reports that the “young men” were “executed” at point blank range.
The news agency, reporting in English, did not mention that the Palestinians were all members of the terror group Islamic Jihad, even though their membership had been proudly proclaimed – in Arabic – by a spokesman for PIJ. They were simply described as “young men.” Not “young men who had fired on the Israelis.” Not “young men who belonged to PIJ.” Just “young men.” Nor did Wafa mention that it was the Palestinians who had fired first, and only then did the Israelis return their fire. Instead, Wafa claimed the Palestinians were “executed” – a word which conjures up an image of helpless Palestinian victims of a malevolent Israeli foe, instead of an exchange of fire started by the Palestinians. Had they not opened fire on the Israelis, none of them would have been killed. The Israelis would have arrested the two men they had come for, and taken them away, not to be “executed,” but to be held and then tried for their crimes.
Every single time, while the Palestinian terror groups praise the “pure blood” of their “martyrs” watering the gardens of resistance, Wafa frames their deaths as if they are innocent civilians – which is the message that organizations like Jewish Voice for Peace gladly spread to the West.
The Palestinian prime minister, Mohamed Shtayyeh, is regarded by the West as a moderate, with no affiliation to terror groups, and Western politicians and NGOs eagerly flock to meet with him as a personification of the fictional Palestine they pretend exists, where men with suits only support “popular resistance” but not terror….
For the Jenin terrorists, Shtayyeh carefully chose photos that did not show the jihadists with any weapons or uniforms, and he wrote in Arabix on March 6:
Glory and eternity to the pious martyrs and shame to the criminal occupation, whose army committed a horrific massacre in Jenin camp this evening, six martyrs were martyred.
“Pious martyrs” is a description of religiously-motivated Palestinians who deliberately set out to kill Israelis and are killed in the process. Christian martyrs die for their faith. Muslim martyrs kill for their faith. They are seen as “martyrs” who deliberately sacrificed themselves for the “cause of Palestine.” That is how Mohammed Shtayyeh described the six terrorists killed in Jenin on March 6 in his Arabic, but not in his English, version, where they are presented not as “warrior-martyrs who died while attacking Israelis,” but rather, as victims of murderous attacks, “executions,” by Israelis.
Shtayyeh also wrote about the Israeli army committing “a horrific massacre” on March 6 in Jenin. There was no “horrific massacre.” The IDF went to the house in the Jenin camp where they knew the murderer of the Yaniv brothers was hiding out. As they approached the house, a volley of gunfire came from inside. The IDF returned the fire. At the same time, Palestinians in the camp rained fire on the soldiers from every direction. The IDF returned fire. By the end, six terrorists, including Abdul Fattah Hussein Kharousha, a 49-year-old member of Hamas, who had killed the Yaniv brothers, were dead, while two Israeli soldiers were lightly wounded.
The Palestinian people have the right to continue their struggle to end the occupation and gain their freedom and establish their independent state and its capital Jerusalem, and the world to condemn the terrorism of the occupation and punish it for its continuous crimes against our people.
That is how Shtayyeh wrote in Arabic to his audience of fellow Palestinians. They know what he means: the Palestinians will have to “struggle” to end the “occupation” – and the word “occupation” applies not just to the West Bank, but to all the territory “from the river to the sea.” Shtayyeh doesn’t have to spell it out; the Palestinians will know.
Since his audience is Palestinians, and every one of those reading his page knows that these six people were all terrorists, his message clearly supports jihadi terrorism.
Of the six Palestinians killed during this Jenin raid, three belonged to Palestinian Islamic Jihad, two to Hamas, and one belonged to a smaller terror group, possibly the new group, the Lion’s Den.
Today, [March 9] after the three Islamic Jihad terrorists were killed, Shtayyeh similarly referred to the Islamic Jihad terrorists as “righteous martyrs.”
Shtayyeh knows these three were all PIJ members. So does his Palestinian audience. They had wanted to kill the Israeli undercover men who came to Jaba to make an arrest; they fired at them from their car; the Israelis then fired back, killing all three. Hence their status, in his Arabic version, as “righteous martyrs.” But the PA’s Prime Minister is careful not to use such terms, knowing their Islamic significance will alarm the Infidels, when he speaks or writes in English. And any armed encounter with Israelis in which Palestinians are killed is presented to non-Arab audiences as an “execution,” even when – as is almost always the case – it was the Palestinians who fired first.
Western leaders who meet with Shtayyeh should ask him about these statements of support for terror. They won’t, though – because they are afraid of getting an honest answer.
Among the questions Shtayyeh might be asked:
Were the killings of the two unarmed Yaniv brothers in Huwarra not an “execution”?
Was Israel wrong to try to hunt down their killer?
When on March 6 in Jenin, Israeli soldiers, Border Police, and Shin Bet agents, came to arrest the man — Abdul Fattah Hussein Kharousha — who killed the Yaniv boys, and from inside the house where Kharousha had been hiding, Palestinians began shooting at the Israelis, and then other Palestinians from every side rained down gunfire on the Israelis, were the Israelis wrong to shoot back? What should they have done?
Are you aware that all six of the Palestinians who died in the exchange of gunfire in the Jenin camp on March 6, that three were members of Palestinian Islamic Jihad, two were members of Hamas, and one a member of a new terror group, the Lion’s Den?
No further questions, Prime Minister. Your silence is deafening.
Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons