The Palestinian city of Nablus is located about 49 km. north of Jerusalem. With a population of some 157,000 Palestinians, Nablus is an ancient city in the heart of the West Bank.
However, Nablus’s rich history is not why this city has recently gained notoriety in the news. Over the past year, this town has been a point of friction between Israelis and Palestinians since the Lion’s Den terror group began using it as its base of operations.
This newly formed militant group drew international attention after Israeli forces killed Ibrahim al-Nabulsi, a prominent terrorist from the city wanted for his leadership in several terror attacks. His role in stoking and carrying out violence was recently glorified, having been named Man of the Year in the Tehran Times, a newspaper that states they are a voice of the Islamic Revolution.
It is one thing for the Tehran Times to glorify an organization known for violence and murder, but another for Canada’s public broadcasting corporation to do the same. As a Canadian-Israeli, I was shocked to see the CBC publish “Suffocated by Israeli occupation, a new generation of Palestinian militants takes up the fight,” which reads as an homage to the terror group.
The Lions' Den terrorists and the CBC
The Lion’s Den is made up of young Palestinians who want to defy Palestinian political leaders, who they see as collaborators with Israel. Their leadership are known terrorists who have carried out several attacks against soldiers and Israelis living in the West Bank. Last October, a senior group member, Tamer Kilani, was planning to commit a “large-scale” attack in Tel Aviv before the IDF neutralized him. According to the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, in 2023 alone, Lion’s Den militants attempted over 40 terror attacks.
Yet, the CBC irresponsibly highlights the group through the eyes of young Palestinians and writes the article in a way that glorifies the interviewed teenagers’ dreams of becoming martyrs, even highlighting one Palestinian teenager intent on joining the terror group once his parents consent.
Encouraging children to join terror groups is a war crime and a violation of international law. Palestinian terror groups like the Lion’s Den are known for recruiting young children to die in pursuit of murdering Israelis. Approximately six recent terror attacks against Israelis were committed by Palestinian teenagers as young as 13 and 14. How could the CBC ignore this tragic form of child abuse?
ADDING TO my disenchantment, the author discounts any non-violent negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority, instead choosing to glorify the Nablus terror group, painting them as the only hope Palestinians have left.
The author does not mention the 16 Israelis, the vast majority being innocent civilians, including young children, murdered in Palestinian shootings, car rammings and stabbings in the past three months.
Ultimately, Israel will and has an obligation – as any other country does – to protect its civilians from terrorists who seek to murder us. The author ignores this reality, instead feeding the false narrative that Israel is senselessly murdering innocent Palestinians and fails to attribute any blame for the massive spike in civilian and military casualties on both sides over the past year to the terror group.
Unquestionably, innocent Palestinians have suffered from Israel’s counter-terror operations, but it is groups like the Lion’s Den who bear the responsibility of forcing the IDF to come in and thwart these attacks in the first place.
Publishing articles like this is unhelpful to all people affected by the conflict. As a Jewish Canadian-Israeli, it is clear that my life is not valued when terrorism is depicted in such a way.
But also, such glorification is a disservice to the Palestinian people as it platforms radical groups that have no interest in peace and want nothing more than to see Jewish people dead, regardless of the cost to Palestinian society as a whole.
I am a proud Canadian, but I have made Israel my home for nearly five years. This means that terrorism, unfortunately, is now part of my life and has deeply affected me. My family, friends and I could easily become victims of terrorism; we are at risk every time we leave our door.
On March 9, a terrorist opened fire and shot three innocent Israelis in Tel Aviv on Dizengoff Street on one of the busiest nights in the city, just down the street from where I live. Unfortunately, one of the victims, Or Ashkar, succumbed to his wounds. He was my age; that could have easily been me or anyone I know. When this happens, we don’t receive empathy; instead, Palestinians celebrate on the streets, handing out candy every time one of us is murdered.
Israelis are human, too, and we are suffering and dying, as well. Our lives matter. The lives of innocent Palestinians matter. Even if the CBC doesn’t care enough to highlight it.
The writer is a social media activist with over 10 years of experience working for Israeli, Jewish and cause-based NGOs. She is the co-founder and the COO of Social Lite Creative, a digital marketing firm specializing in geopolitics.