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Palestinian teen killed in Jerusalem — who did it and why?

Palestinian teen killed in Jerusalem — who did it and why?

Reckless speculation could get more people killed.

Overnight the body of a Palestinian teenager from Jerusalem was found in a forest in the city. It appears to be confirmed that his name is Mohammed Abu Khdeir. The featured image is from Twitter.

Immediately, there was speculation in the media and social media that it was a revenge killing for the murder of three Israeli teens who had been kidnapped and whose bodies were located just a few days ago.

On social media in particular, the speculation was not really speculation — it was announced by the usual suspects to be definitively a revenge kidnapping and murder by “settlers.” There have been riots in an Arab section of Jerusalem, including the destruction of the Light Rail system, based on the rumors. Forest fires also are being set.

The truth is that as of this writing, we don’t really know who did it, and why. The allegation that it was a revenge killing is unconfirmed as of this writing.

Israeli police are following three paths of investigation: (1) it was a revenge killing, (2) it was an honor killing related to the teen’s sexuality, and (3) it was part of a non-political murder as part of an ongoing feud between families.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (and the family of one of the murdered Israeli teens) issued a swift condemnation and promise to find out who and why the teen was killed:

We will continue to follow this and will update or have new posts as actual facts are known.


The Times of Israel is citing unnamed sources that the police are leaning towards it being a revenge attack. By contrast, Haaretz in an evening (Israel time) entry on its live blog quotes an Israeli police official as saying the motive is not known:

7:44 P.M. Public Security Minister Yitzhak Aharonovitch briefs Netanyahu on the investigation into the murder of Abu Khdeir. It is as yet impossible to determine the motive, Aharonovitch says.

Haaretz’ 9:30 p.m. (Israel time) update says police have made little headway:

As of Wednesday evening, the Israel Police and Shin Bet security service had yet to make headway in the investigation of the murder of a young man in East Jerusalem on Tuesday night. Aside from the possibility that the murder was a nationalistic hate crime carried out by an Israeli terror cell in response to the murders of the three teenagers kidnapped and murdered in the West Bank, it is possible it was carried out by Palestinians for other reasons, the police believe.


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“Israeli police are following three paths of investigation: (1) it was a revenge killing, (2) it was an honor killing related to the teen’s sexuality, and (3) it was part of a non-political murder as part of an ongoing feud between families.”

Or (4) it was just a rather outre act of Pallywood agitation.

Life is cheap in Islam.

    Henry Hawkins in reply to Ragspierre. | July 2, 2014 at 1:54 pm

    That’s the first thing that entered my mind – killed by Palestinians to gin up hate of Israelis (plus retribution for his apostate sexual orientation – a twofer).

    mzk in reply to Ragspierre. | July 2, 2014 at 2:08 pm

    To be fair, it’s not common among Israeli Muslims (these are not Israelis, presumably from families that refused Israel’s offer of citizenship), at least not up here in the northwest. It’s more common among the Druze.

      Henry Hawkins in reply to mzk. | July 2, 2014 at 2:15 pm

      Many agents might do this, from PLA to Hamas to even the Russians, who are benefiting from instability in the ME. Not necessary a local.

      I won’t believe it without evidence, but I’ll bet it’s fourth on the Israeli investigators’ menu, wisely not mentioned publicly.

      Then again, it could be a poker debt collection gone awry.

    The Livewire in reply to Ragspierre. | July 2, 2014 at 5:20 pm

    You think as I do.

    rokiloki in reply to Ragspierre. | July 2, 2014 at 7:11 pm

    “Or (4) it was just a rather outre act of Pallywood agitation.”

    You stole my comment! J/k

    Pallywood is my guess. The palestinians did the same thing with mohammed al durah.

    Uncle Samuel in reply to Ragspierre. | July 3, 2014 at 8:54 am

    The sad reality is another likely cause of the murder:

    5. The usual gay-on-gay killing.

    The LBGT lifestyle is fraught with violence and murder.

    In my tiny hometown, beatings and murders among the gay community due to interactions (paid or free) that had gone bad were tragically common. This is the same the world over, as the murder of the Uganda gay celebrity revealed. Police statistics confirm this.

The Palestinians have killed their own, before, in order to blame it on the Israelis.

PS — can we stop using the term “honor killing” to describe the murder of people someone who claims to be a Muslim doesn’t like? I know it is the term they use, but they have no honor.

    rokiloki in reply to Valerie. | July 2, 2014 at 7:24 pm

    True. They often kill “collaborators” and then use the death for propaganda.

    It should be noted that Palestine blames every death on Israel, even if it is a “work place accident” (a bomb prematurely exploding), an accidental killing between Palestinians, or a deliberate killing of an accused spy/collaborator.

    janitor in reply to Valerie. | July 2, 2014 at 9:19 pm

    Phyllis Chesler is calling them “horror killings”.

So far it appears to be an honor killing. Reminds me of the days of the blood libel, when a Christian would kill a child and claim the Jews did it – putting the entire community in danger of torture and grisly execution. When a child was found dead, Jews would hope the child was Jewish.

Yes, the local Arabs say the “settlers” (from where?) did it. Reminds me of when their is a police shooting in a poor neighborhood in the US – you will always find plenty of witnesses claiming the policeman killed in cold blood.

Correction – they destroyed three light rail stations, not the whole system. That could never happen – there are enough Jews here willing to fight back.

Looks like that jerk Barkat never did keep his pledge to get the police into the Arab areas – although to be fair, the police are technically national.

Was there ever a precedent of revenge killing on the part of Israelis?

    Immolate in reply to edgeofthesandbox. | July 2, 2014 at 2:43 pm

    Don’t believe that’s a Jewish term, but there are plenty of instances of people being stoned or otherwise killed in the Old Testament for reasons that would appear as barbaric and senseless from a contemporary perspective as the Muslims’ “honor” killings.

      RuthC in reply to Immolate. | July 2, 2014 at 3:26 pm

      From the earliest times in Jewish thought, literal revenge as in “eye for an eye” was explicitly forbidden. Maimonides, the distinguished Jewish medieval universally accepted authority writes that “anybody who takes this (i.e. revenge) literally is equivalent to an idolator”, a serious accusation which underscores the gravity of such a literal interpretation of the text. He furthermore states that the injection to not take it (revenge) literally was understood from the very foundation of Judaism when Moses received the Torah. Jewish thought places importance on the foundations and establishment of justice that is the very opposite of the arbitrary cruelty of revenge.

    No, not only is there no precedent, leaders across the Israeli and Jewish spectrum have condemned the murder including, movingly, one of the families of the murdered Israeli teens who has issued a statement, “….we all bleed the same”.

    Arabs can and do walk into Jewish Israeli neighborhoods with complete personal safety, unlike the other way around. A Jew who mistakenly wonders into an Arab village will be murdered. The parents of Arabs who murder Jewish Israelis always describe how proud they are of their violent deeds, there is no precedent for the reverse.

    Yes, Israelis are angry, they want justice and to be able to live in peace. But, unlike Arab society, Jews want to coexist, to build, to create and celebrate life. The anti-Semitism inherent in Islam has been magnified by Arab leaders and used as a political tool. There is no parallel on the Jewish side for the toxic level of Nazi-style virulence and hatred that is manifest in Arab society. As Gold Meir said “until the Arabs love their children more than they hate Jews, there will be no peace”. We are very far from this day and in the meantime Israel must protect itself and her people from hatred.

      Chem_Geek in reply to RuthC. | July 2, 2014 at 5:17 pm

      There is no anti-Semitism “inherent in Islam.” You are a bigoted putz. The Arab anti-Semitism was ginned up for political purposes.

        RuthC in reply to Chem_Geek. | July 2, 2014 at 5:35 pm

        Let’s hope that the assertion that there is theological anti-Semitism in Islam, is indeed incorrect.

        Ragspierre in reply to Chem_Geek. | July 2, 2014 at 5:47 pm


        Support that lie, liar.

        And define “inherent”. Is that like was “is” is…???

        To boldly make that assertion means that you do not know the Koran, which is full of anti-Semitism.

        siggy in reply to Chem_Geek. | July 4, 2014 at 7:06 pm

        How about the fact that at the very beginning of the Koran, the 6th and 7th lines, it says “6. Guide us to the Straight Way 7. The Way of those on whom You have bestowed Your Grace, not (the way) of those who earned Your Anger (such as the Jews), nor of those who went astray (such as the Christians).” (see

        There are many other bad statements ( such as

        ” Ignominy shall be their portion [the Jews’] wheresoever they are found… They have incurred anger from their Lord, and wretchedness is laid upon them… because they disbelieve the revelations of Allah and slew the Prophets wrongfully… because they were rebellious and used to transgress. [Surah 111, v. 112]

        And thou wilt find them [the Jews] the greediest of mankind….[Surah 11, v. 96]

        Evil is that for which they sell their souls… For disbelievers is a terrible doom.[Surah II, v. 90]

        Taste ye [Jews] the punishment of burning.[Surah III, v. 18 1]

        Proclaim a woeful punishment to those that hoard up gold and silver…. Their treasures shall be heated in the dres of Hell, and their foreheads, sides and backs branded with them. . . . ‘Taste then the punishment which is your due. [Surah IX, v. 35]

        “They [the Jews] are the heirs of Hell…. They will spare no pains to corrupt you. They desire nothing but your ruin. Their hatred is clear from what they say … When evil befalls you they rejoice.” Ibid. [Surah 111, v. 117-120]

        Those who disbelieve Our revelations, We shall expose them to the fire. As often as their skins are consumed We shall exchange them for fresh skins that they may taste the torment.[Surah IV, v. 56]

        Because of the wrongdoing of the Jews…. And of their taking usury … and of their devouring people’s wealth by false pretenses. We have prepared for those of them who disbelieve a painful doom.[Surah IV, v. 160, 161]

        Allah hath cursed them [the Jews] for their disbelief.[Surah IV, v. 46]

        They [the Jews] will spare no pains to corrupt you. They desire nothing but your ruin. Their hatred is clear from what they say, but more violent is the hatred which their breasts conceal.[Surah III, v. 117-120]

        In truth the disbelievers are an open enemy to you.[Surah IV, v. 101]

        And thou seest [Jews and Christians] vying one with another in sin and transgression and their devouring of illicit gain. Verily evil is what they do. Why do not the rabbis and the priests forbid their evilspeaking and their devouring of illicit gain? …. evil is their handiwork.[Surah V, v. 62, 63]

        O ye who believe! Take not the Jews and Christians for friends. [Surah V, v. 51]

        The most vehement of mankind in hostility [are] the Jews and the idolators.[Surah V, v. 82]

        Fight against such of those [Jews and Christians] … until they pay for the tribute readily, being brought low.[Surah IX, v. 29]

        Allah fighteth against them [the Jews]. How perverse they are![Surah IX, v. 30]

        Believers, many are the rabbis and the monks who defraud men of their possessions… Proclaim a woeful punishment to those that hoard up gold and silver and do not spend it in Allah’s cause…. their treasures shall be heated in the fire of Hell…. [Surah IX, v. 26-34]

        They [the Jews] spread evil in the land …. [Surah V, v. 62-66]

        [The Jews] knowingly perverted [the word of Allah], know of nothing except lies … commit evil and become engrossed in sin. [Surah II, v. 71-85]”

        There are positive statements, as well however. But it is a little hard to accept the idea that the Koran does not serve as a basis for anti-Jewish and anti-Christian sentiment.

    Uncle Samuel in reply to edgeofthesandbox. | July 3, 2014 at 9:00 am

    Revenge or vengeance is forbidden in Scripture for both Jews and Christians:

    Deuteronomy 32:35
    Romans 12:19
    Hebrews 10:30

    Rather, forgiveness is prescribed for the sake of the soul and society – for peace of mind/soul and in the individual and in the community of believers.

Definition of inherent: “existing in something as a permanent, essential, or characteristic attribute”.

Islamic scripture, the Qur’an and Hadith contain numerous statements where Jews are described in derogatory terms. It is these statements that form the basis of Islamic Jew-hatred.

    Ragspierre in reply to RuthC. | July 2, 2014 at 7:08 pm

    Ruth, my comment was not directed to you, but the chem-troll.

      RuthC in reply to Ragspierre. | July 2, 2014 at 7:33 pm

      Thank you for the clarification. I guess the key question is if anti-Semitism is antithetical to the foundation of Islam or rather just a twisting of the religion into a destructive force.

      Clearly there are some groups founded in Islam such as the Ahmadi sect (the only Muslim to win a Nobel prize for science was a member of this group) and the Bahai faith, that are monotheistic and inclusive of other religions.

        janitor in reply to RuthC. | July 2, 2014 at 9:26 pm

        Read Aslan’s “No God But God” (carefully and between the lines) and compare his approach and the apologia in this book, and the almost inexplicable pro-Islam arguments he continually makes (following a scholarly exposition of history and evidence that doesn’t support his spin), to the “objective” way he wrote his recent controversial book “Zealot”. Enlightening.

The Didn’t the Palis stage a murder that was filmed years ago, forgot the name of the case.

In any event, who cares how he died. It would be fun though to learn he was killed because he is teh geh. Of course homosexuals and leftists here would ignore it.