August 19, 2011 Special Dispatch No. 4091

Editorials in Arab Press Justify Eilat Attacks

August 19, 2011
Palestine | Special Dispatch No. 4091

Editorials and articles in the Arab press justified yesterday's (August 18, 2011) terrorist attacks near Eilat, in which eight Israelis were killed and dozens were wounded.

The following are excerpts:

Al-Gumhouriyya: Israel's Aggression Triggered the Attack

The editorial of the Egyptian daily Al-Gumhouriyya stated: "Egypt has emphasized all along that just peace is its strategic option. The PLO and the other Arab states took the same path, launching the Arab peace initiative. Israel rejected and is still rejecting this initiative, and the same is true of the U.S. Israel, especially under its current extremist and racist government, has buried all the peace initiatives, sticking to its policy of aggression and settlement that has undermined stability not only in the Israeli and Palestinian territories, but throughout the Middle East.

"Peace is linked to justice, [and justice] is completely at odds with Israel's aggressive actions and extremist, rejectionist positions that stop the peace initiatives [in their tracks] and open the door to widespread extremism and violence, which we see throughout the region and is not confined to a particular side."[1]

Saudi Al-Jazirah Daily: The Operation Was "Justified and Legal"

The Saudi daily Al-Jazirah wrote:

"No matter how long [someone] is oppressed, the day will come when he will rise up and get back his rights. Between [the time of] falling silent and the awakening, there are [smaller] awakenings and gusts [of activity], in which the wounded man rises up to hurt the one who wounded him, in order to remind him that there are those demanding their rights.

"That is exactly what is happening in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. The Palestinian struggle flagged, because the Palestinian brothers were busy [fighting] each other, after [their ranks] were infiltrated by those who want to harness the Palestinians to their own sectarian goals while purporting to support rejection and resistance. This Palestinian weakness is occasionally [interrupted by acts of] rebellion that remind the Israelis that the Palestinian rights will not be lost or forgotten. Even if the Palestinians become preoccupied with marginal conflicts, they will never forget their land and their country. [They will never forget] that an occupying army is sitting on their land, occupying their cities and living in their homes.

"Yesterday, Israel witnessed one of the Palestinian intifadas, when the Palestinians carried out two fidai [self-sacrifice] attacks against two Israeli busses near the city of Eilat, in the south of occupied Palestine. The Palestinian fidayoun [carried out a] surprise [attack on] a bus with a rocket, and attacked other targets with a Kalashnikov, as a result of which six Israelis died and three others were wounded, one of them severely.

"These two fidai attacks are a reminder to the Israelis that the Palestinians have not abandoned valid fidai operations, even if they have [lately] been confining themselves to targeting Israelis by firing rockets from the Gaza Strip. This is a justified and legal operation, despite all the West's exaggerations and the unjust definitions it has applied to this honorable fidai act. [The operation] was aimed at restoring the legitimate [Palestinian] rights that are being denied even by those who call themselves mediators but [in reality] are nothing but false allies.

"This fidai Palestinian awakening – even if it was a symbolic [action, because it was only] a simple operation against two busses – is a warning to the Israelis and their allies that the patience and silence of the Palestinians will not last much longer."

Qatari Al-Sharq Daily: There Is No Harm in Waging Armed Resistance alongside Negotiations

The Qatari daily Al-Sharq published:

"In an [operation] that renewed the pressure [exerted by] the Palestinian resistance on the occupation authorities in the field, and which brings the Palestinian cause back to the top of the international agenda, the resistance [fighters] hit two buses carrying soldiers and a few [private] vehicles on their way to the resort town of Eilat on the Gulf of Akaba, in a high-quality attack that resulted in dozens of fatalities and injuries. This 'simultaneous triple fidai operation' shocked Israel [to the core] due to its suddenness, ferocity, and military and political implications...

"Israel's escalating crisis has reached a dead end, due to the Israeli government's ongoing evasion of a settlement with the Palestinians and Arabs. The occupation authorities insist on military and security solutions and on the use of oppressive force, with an eye to eroding the steadfastness of the Palestinian people. [But] the Palestinians are determined, now that they have broken the barrier of fear, to follow the path of armed resistance, which they had to abandon for a while due to a mishandling of their historic rights. Today, barring a miracle, neither side is willing or able to back down... There is no harm in [presenting] the Palestinians' political demands while at the same time escalating the resistance to the occupation, as a lever in the hands of the Palestinian negotiators, in order to snatch the Palestinian rights by force from the jaws of the occupation and the UN [simultaneously]." [2]

Editor of PA Daily: The Arab Regimes that Guarded Israel's Borders are Collapsing

Hafez Al-Barghouti, editor of the PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, wrote: "For months, the Israeli government has been ratcheting up [tensions] in response to the Palestinians' insistence on appealing to the U.N. for recognition of a Palestinian state. Every day, we read about Israeli military maneuvers and preparations in anticipation of the September events... In September, Israel wants us to be occupied with retaliating and fighting against it, so as to disrupt [our effort] and distance us from our main goal, which is the attainment of international recognition... The Netanyahu government was sick and tired of the calm, so it started to leak reports about a possible [Israeli] invasion of Gaza and military preparations for a third intifada, even though we did not announce any desire or plans to launch a third intifada...

"Apparently, the Israeli government wants to erase the memory of its economic crimes against the Israelis by committing crimes against the Palestinians, because peace and quiet is the enemy of this government. It needs to make up excuses for creating tension, so that the Israelis will forget their troubles and focus their attention on the external threat alone... Netanyahu and Lieberman were praying for an operation [like] yesterday's attack [near Eilat]. However, they were surprised at its scope and meticulous planning...

"This operation shows what can happen on [Israel's] borders with the Arab countries, for the regimes that used to guard these borders are collapsing one by one, and Israel will not have any new guards [in their stead], unless it submits to peace and gives up its racist settlement enterprise."[3]

A columnist in Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, 'Adel 'Abd Al-Rahman, warned that even worse operations would be carried out in the future, due to Israel's "criminal" handling of the negotiations with the Palestinians: "What happened in Eilat [is only] the first sign of what will happen in response to the Israeli policy that is scornful and hostile to the [notion of] a political settlement and which is coordinated with the U.S. Future events are likely to be [even] worse and more dangerous, because the peoples of the region, first and foremost the Palestinian people, will never accept the criminal Israeli policy that has brought the peoples to a dead end. This compels the world to place the responsibility for what happened in Eilat on the racist Israeli apartheid state, no matter who the perpetrators were."[4]


[1] Al-Gumhouriyya (Egypt), August 19, 2011.

[2] Al-Sharq (Qatar), August 19, 2011.

[3] Al-Hayat Al-Jadida (PA), August 19, 2011.

[4] Al-Hayat Al-Jadida (PA), August 19, 2011.

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