February 12, 2018 Special Dispatch No. 7329

Palestinian Authority, Fatah, Jordanian Press Extol Perpetrators Of Recent Terror Attacks In Israel

February 12, 2018
Jordan, Palestinians | Special Dispatch No. 7329

Alongside statements by Palestinian President Mahmoud 'Abbas and other Palestinian Authority (PA) and Fatah officials expressing opposition to terrorism and support for non-violent protests, officials and media outlets of the PA and Fatah continue to praise terrorists and to present their actions – including deadly shootings – as legitimate struggle against Israel. Palestinian figures and media have not only failed to condemn the recent shooting and stabbing attacks (on January 9, February 5 and February 7), in which several Israelis were killed and wounded, but promised to continue the resistance and follow the example of the terrorists.

Addressing incidents in which terrorists were killed in the course of or following the attacks they perpetrated, PA and Fatah officials disregarded the circumstances of their death, and accused Israel of using excessive force in order to deter the Palestinian residents from holding non-violent protests against the occupation. Some also blamed the U.S. for the current tension. Palestinian presidential spokesman Nabil Abu Rudeina said that U.S. Ambassador in Israel David Friedman "is the cause of the tension, and provokes these violent [incidents], which we oppose... It is his advice that created the crisis in U.S.-Palestinian relations."[1] Fatah Central Committee member Jamal Muhaisen held U.S. President Donald Trump responsible for the deterioration of the situation in the region "due to his decisions that contravene U.N. resolutions," and called to "step up the popular resistance."[2]

The PA and PA-affiliated media, as well the official Facebook page of the Fatah movement, praised the terrorists, especially Hamas member Ahmad Nasr Jarrar, the head of a cell that perpetrated a drive-by shooting on January 9. Jarrar was described as a hero and martyr, a symbol of the armed struggle against Israel and a role model for Palestinian youths. Hamza Zama'ra, shot while perpetrating a stabbing attack on February 7, was described as a hero who sacrificed his life for the sake of his homeland.

Praise for Ahmad Nasr Jarrar also appeared in the Jordanian press (many members of the Jarrar tribe, to which he belonged, live in Jordan).

This report reviews PA and Fatah reactions to the recent terror attacks in Israel and the attitude towards their perpetrators, and also presents excerpts from an article on one of the terrorists in a Jordanian government daily.

Fatah, PA Officials: The Assassination Of Jarrar Was A Crime; We Will Continue The Resistance

Following the death of Ahmad Nasr Jarrar on February 6, 2018 in a shootout with Israeli soldiers three weeks after the drive-by shooting, the PA Foreign Ministry issued a statement which disregarded his involvement in the attack and condemned "the deadly exacerbation [of violence] by Israel and its various apparatuses against defenseless Palestinian residents." It added: "The occupation authorities use excessive force in order to deter the Palestinian residents from holding non-violent protests against the occupation and to convey a clear warning to any Palestinian who is thinking of joining [these protests]... The Israeli government seeks to exacerbate [tension] in the West Bank in order to cause loss of control and [then] hold the Palestinian leadership directly responsible for this."[3]

Jenin Governor Ibrahim Ramadan said following Jarrar's death: "All Palestinians follow in the footsteps of Jarrar, and the Palestinian people will keep up the resistance until Palestine is liberated. Jenin and the Palestinian people will not buckle."[4]

Fatah's Recruitment and Organization Commission issued an obituary for the perpetrators of the recent terrorist attacks. It said: "The Fatah movement's Recruitment and Organization Commission mourns the martyr Hamza Zama'ra who was shot dead [on February 7] by an Israeli on the pretext that he had carried out a stabbing... Fatah will continue resisting the Israeli occupation and settlers, along with brave Palestinians everywhere. The movement [also] mourns [our] people's martyrs who were killed in the recent days, [including] the martyr Ahmad Nasr Jarrar... Fatah and all the Palestinian factions will lead the Palestinian people on the path of struggle until liberty is attained on Palestinian soil."[5]     

Fatah spokesman Osama Al-Qawasma likewise condemned Jarrar's killing while ignoring the reasons for it, saying: "The criminal assassination of the martyr Ahmad Nasr Jarrar... joins the other crimes of the occupation that violate every international law and constitute a policy of permitting the blood of the Palestinians... This crime of summary execution will not weaken the strong will of our people, which will continue to stand fast upon its homeland and to cleave to its eternal rights."[6]

Praise For The Terrorists In PA Media, Fatah's Official Facebook Page

Palestinian and PA media published articles praising Ahmad Nasr Jarrar and the perpetrators of other recent attacks. On February 7, one day after Jarrar's death, the Palestinian daily Al-Ayyam published a positive article about him. The daily's front page featured a picture of him holding a gun, and the article described him as strong, brave and determined. It stated that, in the weeks between the attack and his death, he had become a popular hero for many, who wrote about his good looks and his courage and called him "a flower of the resistance." Many young people, the article added, see him – along with female activist 'Ahed Tamimi – as "a source of inspiration" and as "a new kind of young resistance fighter". The article noted that Jarrar's father was a Hamas member as well and "became a symbol of the resistance in Palestine" after he was killed by Israel.[7]

Al-Ayyam front page, featuring a photo of Ahmad Nasr Jarrar 

The PA's official news agency, WAFA, published an investigative article about his death titled "The End of a Brave Man."[8] It also published an article on Hamza Zama'ra, who perpetrated the February 7 stabbing, describing him as "a [released] prisoner and the brother of two prisoners, who chose to join the procession of martyrs to defend his homeland."[9]

On the day of Jarrar's death, Fatah's official Facebook page posted several images of him: a photo of his body, with the headline "The martyr Ahmad Nasr Jarrar, who attacked the enemy and did not flee from him"; a photo of Jarrar and his father, referred to respectively as "the lion cub" and "the lion"; and a photo of him with the caption "He shook Israel's security and terrified it," and accompanied by the text: "O land that belongs to us, o enemy whom we do not fear." The page also posted a photo of Palestinians killed in recent incidents, including Zama'ra and Jarrar, with the text "martyr follows martyr, we must preserve the flowers of martyrdom." [10]

Image on Fatah's official Facebook page shows "the lion cub" Jarrar and his father, "the lion"

Image of on Fatah's Facebook page shows Jarrar, who "shook Israel's security and terrified it"

Photo of Palestinians killed in recent incidents, including Zama'ra and Jarrar, with the text "martyr follows martyr, we must preserve the flowers of martyrdom." 

Article In Jordanian Government Daily Glorifies Jarrar

As mentioned, praise for Jarrar also appeared in the press of Jordan, where most of the members of the Jarrar tribe live. The government daily Al-Rai published an article by 'Abd Al-Hadi Al-Majali, who glorified him, writing: "Your portrait will appear on the shirts of the young people and will become a symbol of the new revolution. Che Guevara will envy you and Mao Zedong will learn from you... Love songs in the Arab world will all be about you, and girls will write them on their hands and later maybe have them tattooed on their hands... [In Heaven,] Yasser Arafat will greet you and present you with the medal of the revolution. [The renowned Palestinian poet] Mahmoud Darwish will write a poem in your honor and [Palestinian terrorist] Dalal al-Mughrabi will present you with her weapon... [Arafat's deputy] Abu Jihad will give you the kiss of the revolution on your forehead. [Hamas founder] Ahmad Yassin will immediately turn away from his prayer [to greet you]. Kiss his hand, that noble and honorable man is worthy of it. It is Palestine that will raise you to Heaven. [Palestine] is your mother, your honor and [your] entire world... You are the future and you are the way. Your way is the solution."[11]  

The Jordanian Al-Ghad daily published Jarrar's portrait with a stanza from a poem by Darwish.[12]

Portrait of "the martyr Ahmad Jarrar" in Al-Ghad, with poem by Darwish


[1], February 7, 2018.

[2] February 6, 2018.

[3], February 7, 2018.

[4], February 7, 2018.

[5], February 7, 2018.

[6], February 6, 2018.

[7] Al-Ayyam (PA), February 7, 2018.

[8], February 6, 2018.

[9], February 7, 2018.

[10] Facebook/officialfateh1965, February 6, 2018.

[11] Al-Rai (Jordan), February 7, 2018.

[12] Al-Ghad (Jordan), February 7, 2018.

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