Three Israeli teens murdered, what comes next?
What we now know about what happened, and what it says about Palestinians, Israelis and Americans
In the wake of yesterday’s awful discovery that Eyal Yifrach, Gil-ad Shaar and Naftali Frankel had been murdered by the abductors, it’s now clearer what happened.
The Times of Israel reported What happened on the night of the kidnapping:
The prevailing assessment within the defense establishment is that the kidnappers, at least at first, only saw one of the hitchhikers, perhaps Yifrach, who did not know Shaar and Fraenkel. Only once the kidnappers’ Hyundai i35 came to a stop did the kidnappers realize that they would be outnumbered by their hostages within the small confines of the car. This may be what changed the nature of the crime from kidnapping to murder, security sources suggested. …
Recognizing, too late, that the car was not an innocent Israeli vehicle, one of the teens called the police at 10:25 p.m. and whispered, “We’ve been kidnapped.” The call was transferred immediately to a senior officer, who continued to ask questions but received no reply. The call lasted for 2:09 minutes and was then cut off. The officer called the number eight more times, but received three busy signals and reached voicemail five times.
It is likely that shortly afterward the three boys were murdered and taken to the field where they were found buried.
The reactions to the abductions have highlighted certain fault lines between Israeli and Palestinian societies.
David Horovitz wrote a moving tribute to the parents of the three teens, The Insistent Humanity of the Bereaved, in which he concludes:
Remarkably, we can take our lead from the parents of the murdered teenagers, who have displayed such strength, sensitivity and concern for the rest of Israel since that fateful June 12 night. I saw this directly last Thursday, when I sat facing Rachelle Fraenkel, and she told me, among a series of extraordinary remarks, “I’m praying with all my heart. It might help. I believe it could help, especially when thousands and millions are praying. They are. But nobody owes me anything. And if tomorrow, God forbid, I’ll hear the worst news, I don’t want my children to feel that where did all my prayers go?”
In their different ways, each of the families urged Israelis to remain united and strong, hailed our solidarity, thanked us for our hopes and our prayers.
They refused to be tainted by the inhumanity that robbed them of their beloved sons. Our hearts go out to them.
Looking at the other side (and picking up on a point that Horovitz made) Bret Stephens asks Where are the Palestinians Mothers? (Google search terms) Stephens answers, devastatingly:
Because everything that happens in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is bound to be the subject of political speculation and news analysis, it’s easy to lose sight of the raw human dimension. So it is with the murder of the boys: How far will Israel go in its retaliation? What does it mean for the future of the Fatah-Hamas coalition? What about the peace process, such as it is?
These questions are a distraction from what ought to be the main point. Three boys went missing one night, and now we know they are gone. If nothing else, their families will have a sense of finality and a place to mourn. And Israelis will know they are a nation that leaves no stone unturned to find its missing children.
As for the Palestinians and their inveterate sympathizers in the West, perhaps they should note that a culture that too often openly celebrates martyrdom and murder is not fit for statehood, and that making excuses for that culture only makes it more unfit. Postwar Germany put itself through a process of moral rehabilitation that began with a recognition of what it had done. Palestinians who want a state should do the same, starting with the mothers.
Finally, for now, in the words of Neo-Neocon, What will be America’s reaction to murder of three Israeli teens? Noah Pollak provides an answer in Bias Against Israel and it’s not pretty.
Moments after the news broke today that the bodies of the teenagers had been found, State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said the U.S. was “urging restraint”—that is, urging Israel not to respond to the murder of its citizens.
Likewise the president’s condolence statement concluded with an admonition that “all parties refrain from steps that could further destabilize the situation.” Make no mistake—this is not a call on “all parties.” It is a call directly to Israel, as Hamas already acted to “destabilize the situation” by abducting and murdering three teenagers and it continues to “destabilize the situation” by launching dozens of rockets a day at Israel, including 16 this morning. Throughout this rocket campaign Obama issued no statements calling on Hamas to stop “destabilizing the situation.” Hamas is prosecuting a multifaceted terror offensive—and Obama’s position is to call on Israel not to respond, on the grounds that that would be “destabilizing.”
Pollak carefully shows that the administration’s reaction to the killings is part of a pattern not some diplomatic slip up.
Eyal, Gil-ad and Naftali are gone. It appears that they never had a chance. Will the endless incitement that led to their deaths ever stop? And will the deaf ears that refuse to hear evil, ever start to listen?
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It is not going to start with palestinian mothers. Females are broodmares and property. They have no say in islam. They are to go along with whatever the males want. These women are force into arranged marriages, forced to wear tents and forced to do as the men say. An islamic reformation is the only thing that will change this along with western countries shutting off aid and demanding that the terrorist behavior stops or there will be lots of dead palestinians.
re: “An Islamic reformation is the only thing that will change this along with western countries shutting off aid and demanding that the terrorist behavior stops or there will be lots of dead Palestinians.”
Absolutely, completely and totally unrealistic. Reform a religion of over ONE BILLION people? What will you do in the interim, while they are gently weened from their doctrine and practice of wholesale slaughter? Hold their hand and continue to offer excuses for their bad behavior? Remember, we are not talking about an extreme behavior for Islamic doctrine, but a command from their holy book. What we call Muslim terrorists is exactly how Islam was spread over 1,000 years ago. From their own words we know they still have their eye upon regaining Spain as well as new geographic locations.
Israel needs to start in the north of Gaza and push these people into Egypt or the Mediterranean Sea – either way, they’re out of the borders of Israel. Egypt, Jordan and Syria have no problem in putting down these rabid dogs calling themselves Palestinians, so hand them the trash.
I have to laugh when people talk about “an islamic reformation.”
What do you think has been happening for the last 40 years?
Sorry, folks, but the rising tide of radical fundamentalism in islam – be it radical Shi’ia like the Ayatollahs of Iran, the Salafists, the Wahabbis, the Muslim Brotherhood, al Qaeda, ISIS/L, or some other radical group – IS their reformation, taking any and all “moderation” acquired through the centuries and declaring it apostasy.
At this point, it has become reform, or commit suicide as a society. Look at what a mess every “Muslim” nation is, right now.
Although this is an atrocious act, it is also much less frequent than the torture and murder of Muslims by other Muslims. When a society decides that it is ok to kill any of your neighbors for trivial reasons, there is no way to limit the killing to the identified enemies. Such a society brings disaster upon itself.
If you reward your children each time they behave badly, and you reward them more the worse they are, they will behave badly more often, in order to get rewarded.
This explains the Palestinians precisely.
As if any more evidence were needed to underscore Islam’s utter disregard for human life, look to how the jihadists treat their own Muslim brethren in Iraq and Syria, who merely happen to belong to a different sect, or, who are deemed to not be zealous enough in their fanaticism — with crucifixions, beheadings or a spray of bullets from a machine gun!!! So, there shouldn’t be any ambiguity about the jihadists’ abject hostility towards all people and institutions that are non-Islamic.
Islam is an ideology that is inherently at odds with people who value human rights; with international cooperation and civility, with secular governments; with freedom of worship and freedom of expression. The Israelis (and, now, the rest of the world) have been confronting these implacable, spite-filled fanatics for decades, but, the perpetually naive Islamic apologists in the West still don’t understand what we’re dealing with here.
Islam must be unrepentantly and unabashedly described and confronted as what it transparently is — the Nazism of the 21st century, an utterly fascistic, totalitarian ideology of scripture-sanctioned aggression, violence and death. In fact, I would submit that Islam is perhaps even more dangerous than Nazism, because, even the Nazis didn’t claim that they were acting in accordance with Divine will. A fanatic who believes that he has been granted an open-ended license from God to slaughter people as he pleases is dangerous beyond belief. If you have millions of like-minded fanatics, then, the damage that they can inflict is incalculable. That there are 1 billion-plus Muslims who don’t act out the same violent urges, or, alternately, offer tacit and/or rhetorical support for the jihadists, is utterly irrelevant, when (as the 9/11 attacks amply proved) all you need is a few men with box cutters and pepper spray and a willingness to die for their cause to murder thousands of innocents. So, like that spite-filled ideology which aspired to global domination, Islam must be confronted with the same seriousness of purpose, admittedly, a much more challenging proposition, given that Islam presents itself as a religion, has no single representative leader and is not constrained by borders.
Islam delenda est.
Recall that those sects of Islam which are peaceful and spiritual (Sufi, Ahmadi, Druze) rather than bloodthirsty (Sunni, Shia) are considered apostates deserving (under sharia) of only torture and death. If Islam is so great let Muslims remain in Muslim nations. The outward migration of the peaceful Muslims to the West from the strife-torn Muslim nations only makes both places worse off.
Hamas and its supporters are gutless for deciding to target civilians with their bus bombs and civilian kidnappings. They know they cannot survive attacks on the IDF. But the passion for evil swamps any vestigial humanity Hamas supporters may theoretically have.