Mahmoud Abbas Palestinian Authority (PA) has ignored Israeli protests to the Obama Administration over plans announced in December to honor terrorist Dalal Mughrabi, who commanded the terrorists that perpetrated the 1978 coastal road bus hijacking, in which 37 Israelis, including 12 children, were slaughtered. At the time of the announcement of the plan by the Ramallah municipality, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu immediately protested to the U.S. and sharply criticized the PA for its intention to name the square in Ramallah after a terrorist who killed dozens of Israelis.
The official PA daily newspaper has reported that the PA has chosen to ignore Netanyahu’s and that it intends to proceed naming the square after the terrorist on March 11, the 32nd anniversary of the terror coastal road terror attack, the worst in Israels history. According to the report, the Ramallah mayor, Jamal Al-Tawil, said that … this year the municipality will celebrate the inauguration of the Shahida (Martyr) Dalal Mughrabi Square in order to commemorate her memory and her sacrifice as a Palestinian woman who resisted the occupation. City Council member Aida Abu-Ubeid said that the square is considered a symbol of the sacrifice of the Palestinian woman. She also noted that flowers and trees will be planted there, and that a picture of the Shahida Dalal Mughrabi will be placed at the center of the square (Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, March 7, 2010, translation courtesy of Itamar Marcus and Nan Jacques Zilberdik, PA to name square for terrorist killer on anniversary of attack, Palestinian Media Watch Bulletin, March 7, 2010).
Last December, the PA also honored Mughrabi with a 50th birthday celebration at which the text on the giant banner carrying Mughrabis portrait read: Under the auspices of President Mahmoud Abbas The Political and National Education Authority Ceremony on the anniversary of the birth of the bride of the cosmos The Shahida (Martyr) Dalal Mughrabi. PA news broadcasts proclaimed that Under the auspices of President Mahmoud Abbas, the Political and National Education Authority held a ceremony marking the 50th anniversary of the Shahida (Martyr) Dalal Mughrabi, commander of the Coastal Operation (i.e. hijacking of bus and killing of 37 civilians) (PA TV (Fatah), Dec. 29, 2009, translation courtesy of Itamar Marcus and Nan Jacques Zilberdik, Abbas sponsors birthday celebrations honoring terrorist Dalal Mughrabi, killer of 37, Palestinian Media Watch, December 31, 2009).
ZOA has previously provided a long list of terrorists honored by Abbas PA.
ZOA National President Morton A. Klein said, We have here a clear demonstration that Mahmoud Abbas and the PA cannot even be shamed into ceasing to honor a bloodthirsty terrorist. It should come as no surprise that this glorification of terror and terrorism continues when Abbas Fatah calls to this day in its Constitution for the destruction of Israel (Article 12) and the use of terrorism as an essential element in the campaign to achieve that goal (Article 19).
The record shows that within the PA, few opportunities are missed to glorify a terrorist, celebrate a suicide bomber, or inculcate Palestinian youth into worshipping cold-blooded murderers. The record also shows that all aspects of PA life — the schools, youth movements, sports teams, newspapers, TV, even the names of streets — are made vehicles for honoring and praising terrorism. This in turn breeds more terrorists and bloodshed.
The ZOA has long maintained that Mahmoud Abbas, the PA that he heads and the Fatah party that controls it and which he co-founded, are unreconstructed supporters of terrorism and not genuine moderates and peace makers. In fact, it is incumbent upon all civilized people to call Abbas and Fayyad as evil leaders of an evil regime.
A Palestinian leader who neither arrests terrorists nor ceases to honor them is not one who will lead Palestinians on a new path of peace and reconciliation.
Given this shocking record, we renew our long-standing call for the Obama Administration to desist from ignoring the incitement to hatred and murder within the PA and to insist in talks with Abbas and other PA officials that the PA takes immediate action to comprehensively end this glorification of terror. Only when Palestinians reject the idea that it is a religious and national duty to murder Jews and to celebrate those among them who act on this instruction will there be any prospect of peace.