Morton A. Klein, president, Zionist Organization of America (ZOA), issued the following statement:
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry issued appalling and woefully inadequate remarks on the Secretary’s meetings last week with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and PLO Chairman / Palestinian Authority (PA) President Mahmoud Abbas. Secretary Kerry again failed to condemn or even acknowledge that Abbas, Hamas and the PLO/Palestinian Authority are inciting terrorism, including knife, shooting and car attacks against innocent Israeli Jews; gave what appeared to be an excuse for such terrorism; failed to mention that the perpetrators of the terrorism are virtually all Palestinian Arabs; and again pushed for a Palestinian state – which would surely be a terrorist state.
After meeting with Mahmoud Abbas on November 24, Secretary Kerry stated:
“I know that the situation for Palestinians in the West Bank, in Jerusalem, in Gaza is, at this moment, very dire, that there are extraordinary concerns, obviously, about the violence. And I want to make it very, very clear tonight that I am here at the request of President Obama to see what we can do to try to help contribute to calm and to restore people’s confidence in the ability of a two-state solution to still be viable, to be achieved at some point.”
Kerry’s false statement about Palestinian Arabs’ “very dire” situation is reminiscent of Secretary Kerry’s statement the previous week (on Nov. 17, 2015) that some terrorism is legitimate or has a “rationale.”
It is also factually wrong and outrageous that Secretary Kerry states that the situation of “Palestinians” in the “West Bank” (Judea and Samaria), Jerusalem and Gaza is “very dire.”
Since 1967, when Jordan’s illegal 19-year occupation of eastern Jerusalem and Judea and Samaria ended, Israel vastly improved living conditions in all the areas cited by Kerry. Even in the midst of worldwide recession in 2009, the “West Bank” economy grew by more that 7 percent, achieving the 26th best growth rate out of 212 countries in the world. Virtually no Palestinian Arabs would trade places with Arabs elsewhere in the Middle East. As Bedouin diplomat Ishmael Khaldi stated: “By any yardstick you choose – educational opportunity, economic development, women and gay’s rights, freedom of speech and assembly, legislative representation – Israel’s minorities fare far better than any other country in the Middle East.”
And even while Hamas lobs rockets at innocent Israeli citizens, Israel continues to import hundreds of truckloads per day of good into Gaza. Every single day, about 550 truckloads of goods, carrying everything from foodstuffs to vehicles, pass into Gaza from Israel. And nearly 1.3 million tons of construction materials have entered Gaza from Israel in the past year – despite the major security problem posed by Hamas diverting construction materials to build terror tunnels and terror infrastructure for attacking Israel.
If Secretary Kerry is truly concerned about Palestinian Arabs, Kerry should demand that Abbas, Hamas and the PLO/PA stop using PA schools and textbooks and government-controlled television and soccer clubs to teach Palestinian Arab children to aspire to become terrorists who murder Jews and Israelis – and should instead start teaching Palestinian Arab children to become doctors and entrepreneurs who live in peace with their Jewish neighbors. If Secretary Kerry is truly concerned about Palestinian Arabs, Kerry should also start combating anti-Israel boycotts, divestment and sanctions (BDS) – since BDS causes Arabs to lose good jobs in boycotted businesses.
Also on November 24, 2015, Secretary Kerry made a public statement prior to his meeting with Prime Minister Netanyahu, condemning “acts of terrorism” in the abstract, without ever mentioning who was responsible for perpetrating and inciting the terror attacks. For example, Kerry stated “And today, I expressed my complete condemnation for any act of terror that takes innocent lives and disrupts the day-to-day life of a nation.”
Throughout his lengthy statement, Kerry never once mentioned that Palestinian Arabs perpetrated virtually every attack. Kerry never mentioned that Mahmoud Abbas, Hamas, and the PLO/PA constantly incite Palestinian Arabs to murder Jews and Israelis, using official PA/PLO newspapers, cartoons, Facebook pages, television specials, school textbooks, and naming streets and public squares for brutal terrorists.
On November 25, Magen David Adom (MDA) revealed that since the wave of incessant Arab attacks against Jews began two months ago (when Arab rock-throwing terrorists murdered Alexander Levlovich in mid-September on the Jewish New Year in Jerusalem), Arab terrorists have murdered 22 Jewish victims, and MDA has treated and evacuated to hospitals at least 225 injured terror victims.
Secretary Kerry needs to start explicitly condemning, defunding and penalizing the Palestinian Arab perpetrators and inciters of terrorism.