Palestinian rejectionism, glorification of terrorism is stopping peace - opinion

Such actions prove that the core issue isn’t occupation, but Palestinian rejectionism and terrorism against the indigenous people of the land – the Jews

 YANKELE HILLEL, a survivor of the 1929 Hebron massacre, places a stone on a grave amid a long row of small headstones for the victims, at a cemetery in the city, August 2009, marking 80 years since the massacre.  (photo credit: ABIR SULTAN/FLASH90)
YANKELE HILLEL, a survivor of the 1929 Hebron massacre, places a stone on a grave amid a long row of small headstones for the victims, at a cemetery in the city, August 2009, marking 80 years since the massacre.
(photo credit: ABIR SULTAN/FLASH90)

The PA is known for its celebration of terrorism, naming streets or squares after murderers, paying terrorists and their families for acts of violence and passing out candy after terror attacks. 

But this month, the Palestinian Authority upped its game. To start, it openly celebrated the 1929 Hebron massacre in which mobs of Arabs, incited by rumors that the Jews were “destroying al-Aqsa,” mass raped, pillaged and ethnically cleansed the Jewish population of Hebron – murdering 67 Jews and injuring dozens.

Only days after the PA praised this attack, President Mahmoud Abbas refused to condemn the 1972 Munich massacre during a speech in Germany, instead engaging in Holocaust inversion – accusing Israel of committing “50 holocausts” – a remark that earned him an ongoing criminal investigation in Germany for Holocaust denial, which is illegal there.

Earlier this summer, the PA’s official TV channel ran a series of segments celebrating the primary instigators of the Hebron massacre with a song praising them. 

“The homeland will never forget its revolutionaries,” reads a part of the lyrics. The PA segment also expressed that the massacre was a “basic part of our culture” and an expression of Palestinian “national identity.” A second segment praising the massacre and the murderers stated “glory and eternity to our people’s pure martyrs.”

 PALESTINIAN AUTHORITY head Mahmoud Abbas gestures during the news conference with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz in Berlin, earlier this month.  (credit: LISI NIESNER/ REUTERS) PALESTINIAN AUTHORITY head Mahmoud Abbas gestures during the news conference with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz in Berlin, earlier this month. (credit: LISI NIESNER/ REUTERS)

The same day, Fatah, Abbas’s political party, shared a post on its social media praising the Hebron massacre: “Ninety-two years since the execution of the heroes of the al-Buraq Rebellion.” If that’s not enough, that same week, the PA’s official newspaper, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, also published an article glorifying the murderers

The Palestinian Authority celebrates its terrorists

What is so telling about these actions by the PA isn’t simply that it’s embracing terrorism, but that it’s actively celebrating terrorism and ethnic cleansing that occurred long before the establishment of the State of Israel. Palestinian leaders have been quick to claim to the West that the problem today is the occupation of the West Bank in 1967 by Israel – and yet here they are referring to mass murderers of Jews in 1929 as “heroes” and an expression of Palestinian “national identity.”

Such actions prove that the core issue isn’t occupation, but Palestinian rejectionism and terrorism against the indigenous people of the land – the Jews. The Palestinian government’s embrace of the Hebron massacre flies in the face of the presumption by many, disproportionately on the political Left, who claim that occupation is the primary motivator for terrorism today. 

However problematic occupation is, or however unhelpful settlements are, Palestinian rejectionism is the problem that prevents a long-term solution. It is for this reason the Palestinian celebration of pre-’48 terror attacks garners almost no media coverage. After all, it doesn’t fit the narrative.

Similarly, Abbas’s comments in Germany in which he inverted the Holocaust and refused to condemn the Munich massacre once again demonstrate the Palestinian Authority’s refusal to recognize the indigenous history of the Jewish people in the Land of Israel. 

Social conditioning plays a huge role

From the start, the Palestinians have adhered to an ahistorical narrative that portrays the Jews as “foreign” and the Palestinians as “native.” This is a theme that runs in every part of society; TV, social media, schools and beyond. However, the truth is the opposite. The Jews are indigenous to the Land of Israel and the Arab Palestinians who exist today are in fact descendants of a colonial conquest of the land – the Islamic conquests. When the ancient Kingdom of Israel existed in the land where Palestinians and Israelis live today, Islam did not yet exist. 

Of course that doesn’t mean that Palestinians as a people have no right to self-determination today – it isn’t their fault they are descendants of colonialists.

However, the conflict between Israelis and Palestinians will not be resolved until the Palestinians recognize reality and accept that Jews have every right to self-determination in their indigenous homeland. Only through mutual recognition of each other’s rights, with necessary land compromises on both sides, will we see peace.

The writer is the CEO of Social Lite Creative LLC and a human rights activist.