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Dog Bites Man

Dog Bites Man

PA Court Sentences Arab to Death

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As I browsed one of the Jewish news sites last night, I stumbled upon the following item, originally reported by IsraelNN.com: PA Court: Hang Arab for Selling Land to Jews.

According to this story, a Palestinian Authority military court yesterday sentenced a Hebron Arab to death by hanging for treason. The crime? Selling land to Jews in Judea and Samaria. The court's ruling is the first time the PA has officially handed down a guilty verdict of treason for this crime.

I quickly switched to my standard news sources, hoping beyond hope that they would deem this story newsworthy. But... nothing. Not on the sites' homepages, and not even buried somewhere in a two-hits-per-week Middle East news index. (In case you're doubting the veracity of the story considering its Israeli source, Aljazeera's website also reported this story.)

A phenomenon that is becoming predictable, though still discomfiting every time anew.

(I should note that CNN did find another news item more worthy of reportage: An indictment drafted by a conference of Islamic prosecutors – hosted by acclaimed human rights champion, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad – against Israeli leaders, accusing them of crimes against humanity and war crimes in Gaza. "Israel is a regime that only understands the language of violence and force," the peace-loving Ahmadinejad moaned...)

Is this due to a bias by the "mainstream media" against Israel? Perhaps.

And perhaps not. Maybe this is simply a byproduct of the journalistic rule: Man bites dog—newsworthy. Dog bites man—not newsworthy. This also explains why chances are that many of you are unaware of the vile vandalizing of Joseph's Tomb that occurred this past week, this holiest of sites desecrated with swastikas and other anti-Semitic graffiti. This also explains why Gilad Shalit, now held captive by Hamas for nearly three years, is nowhere near public consciousness.

In truth, however, I believe that this story is a bit more newsworthy than many other similar crimes that happen so often in that corner of the world. Yes, Arab "collaborators" have, for years, been tried and murdered by vigilantes and ad hoc kangaroo courts, with tacit support from the Palestinian Authority. But this is the first time that the P.A., the "moderate" entity that the world expects Israel to view as a partner for peace, has officially, and "legally," initiated this heinous injustice.

May G‑d have mercy on this poor Palestinian. And may G‑d give the relatively new Israeli government clarity, courage and strength in their quest for security and peace.


Rabbi Naftali Silberberg is a writer, editor, and director of the curriculum department at the Rohr Jewish Learning Institute. Rabbi Silberberg resides in Brooklyn, NY, with his wife Chaya Mushka and their three children.
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Discussion (2)
May 5, 2009
"a nation of neo-Nazis"?
Probably why the irritated Jews are trying to move out of Israel.
I also wish G-d would have mecy upon Palestine and upon all the peopleof the Middle East.
It seems so much trouble is caused by ecological concerns and that so few politicians or releigious leaders advise the public as to the random nature of some phenomena.
Arabic nations may have acculturated around particularly difficult phenomena, hence language, script, dress and dietary differences, styles of worship. perhaps things are so rocky that the PA sees Jewish cultural patterns to be threatening, like some of the peasantry of Ontario
sue
Kanata, ON
May 4, 2009
Such is life
...in America, where the Arabs are humble G-d-fearing folks who just want peace, and Israel is a nation of neo-Nazis bent on world domination and genocide. Just another reason to make aliyah.
Michael Goldstein
Marlton, NJ
What's the latest news? For that information, check your local or national news outlet. In this blog we will discuss the "why?"

Not "why did this event occur?" but "why did I find out about it?" There must be a reason. It must contain a lesson I can use to better myself and my surroundings. Together we will find the lessons...
Naftali SilberbergRabbi Naftali Silberberg resides in Brooklyn, NY, with his wife Chaya Mushka and their three children.
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