Tuesday, June 15, 2010

It’s a heartbreaker.

Einav Bloom, finance of Shuki Sofer, the Beersheba police officer who was murdered by terrorists yesterday, asked the universal question: "How is it fair?" she said, shortly after she’d been told that her future husband had been killed when Arab terrorists launched an ambush attack on a police car – a car that was doing nothing more sinister than carrying other officers to their stations in Hebron.

Sofer was buried in Beersheba last night. The two other officers are still hospitalized.

It’s a story every family in Israel has heard at least once. Shuki’s father, Yosef, said his son was "an outstanding policeman who loved the police force with all his heart. He was never concerned about the location of his job, but we were scared and worried."

His mother, Dalia, told Haaretz, a Hebrew-language daily, that the morning her son died was like any other. "I spoke to him," she said, "I made him something to drink before he left, and like every other day he kissed me goodbye before he headed out."

Shortly after, at 8:30 A.M. the worst happened. “Police officers knocked on our door and told us that Yehoshua was seriously injured in traffic accident and that he had been transferred to the hospital, “ Yosef Sofer said. “When we got there we were met by senior police officers and the Police commander. Defense Minister Ehud Barak spoke to us on the phone. Several hours later he died."

Of course not everyone is heartbroken. Some are rejoicing. Arab terrorists started by being delighted with their kill, then launched a verbal attack against Israel. Shuki’s death was our fault, they say.

Fatah – the party of Abu Mazen, our alleged “peace partner”, who calls himself Mahmoud Abbas when he gets cleaned up – started out by claimed responsibility.

Fatah’s Imad Mughinyeh cell said they had fired at a police car, killing Sofer and wounding two other policemen near the community of Beit Haggai, just across the highway from Hebron. Praising the attack, they announced that it "proved Palestinian fighters are keen on 'resistance'” which is the Arab code word for terror.

“All Palestinians have the right to resist and the right to reject negotiations," the spokesperson added. Interesting comment from a group with whom the world insists Israel must ‘negotiate’ a peace agreement.

PA Prime Minister Salam Fayyad – Abu Mazen’s deputy – began by ignoring the terror attack completely. Instead, in a press conference yesterday, he denounced Israel's killing of an Arab terrorist who’d aimed his car at three policemen on Friday in Jerusalem.

Remember how that event played out on Friday: In Jerusalem, near the Wadi Joz neighborhood very near the Old City walls, a terrorist tried to run over the policemen with his vehicle. Three Border Police were injured, but other Border Police on the scene shot and critically wounded the terrorist as he pulled a gun and began to fire. That’s the death Fayyad denounced, apparently on the theory that Israel is not permitted to interrupt a terrorist while he’s going about his work.

In any event, as the story of Shuki’s death built, later in the day, Fatah officials seemed to reconsider this silence. Or maybe they decided to take a page out of the Community Organizer’s book, and not let this crisis go to waste.

In any event, another PA bigwig joined the debate – with a weakened Abbas, everyone is jockeying for position. PA Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki decided this was the moment to jump in and blame Israel for Shuki’s killing.

“The murder is Israel’s fault because it took place in an area under Israel's responsibility where Israel does not allow PA police forces to operate,” Al-Maliki reasoned. He added that Israel "is paying the price" for not surrendering Judea and Samaria to the PA.

Ah well, there you go. Another legalistic ‘It’s not my dog. It didn’t bite you. And besides, you hit the dog first anyway’ argument from the terrorists. Actually I liked it better when they took credit for their murders. It was more honest.

Not that it’s over. Several hours after the terrorist attack, the IDF discovered five explosive devices in the possession of a PA Arab who turned himself in to the authorities at the Hawara checkpoint near Shechem, in Samaria.

The man said he was forced by terrorists to carry out an attack. Sappers neutralized the devices, and the would-be terrorist was taken into custody for questioning.

So far, Israel’s mild response has been heartbreaking all by itself. Following the shooting, the head of the Civil Administration, the Israeli military authority that governs the West Bank, accused PA leaders of “not doing enough to prevent violence.”

Excuse me. Not doing enough to prevent violence? How about doing everything they can to commit violence?

Anyway, Brig-Gen. Yoav Mordechai went on to say that the attack was a "serious incident" that could not be overlooked.


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