Op-ed: Arab-Israeli arsonists, terror abettors viewed by leftists as victims of oppression, racism

Shaul Rosenfeld
Published: 08.15.12

“Houses are on fire in Tivon. A massive fire has joined the other blazes in Beit Shemesh and Jerusalem. These images prove what is already known: The fire services in Israel are in need of an urgent overhaul.”

This is how anchorman Oded Shahar opened a recent “Mabat” newscast on Channel 1. We are supposed to accept the position of Shahar and the editors, according to which the fires that have been raging across Israel have nothing to do with the fact that some elements within Israeli society are determined to burn down the “Jewish club.” The fires are another aspect of the terror war.

Fighting Flames
Suspicion: Wave of nationalistically motivated arson fires / Ynet reporters
Authorities suspect recent fires in Kiryat Tivon, Even Sapir and Beit Shemesh caused by arson; investigation launched
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But Shahar and his editors serve as merely one example of how local progressive forces remove any “mines” related to the antics of the Arab sector and absolve it of any responsibility for its actions, and instead blame the state.

Therefore, it is only natural that when anyone dares raise the question of the Arabs’ loyalty to the state amid suspicions that members of the sector were behind the fires, they are immediately portrayed as racists and are banned from any legitimate discourse in the public sphere.

Between mid-May and the end of June 1,057 fires erupted in the Jerusalem area alone. More than 700 of those were caused by arson, according to the fire services. As far as I know, Amos Oz and David Grossman did not express outrage over the blazes, and, miraculously, we did see any petitions signed by intellectuals calling to investigate the burning of fields (not owned by Palestinians) – they will always point an accusatory finger at those who speak ill of the Arabs, Palestinians or Muslims in general. But when it comes to the settlers, they will attack the entire community over the actions of one of its members.

Arsonists and Jewish murderers are of course raised in flower beds that have been cultivated by the Jewish society surrounding them, while Arab arsonists, Arab-Israeli terror abettors and Palestinian murderers are always viewed as the eternal victims of Israeli oppression or the occupation in the territories.

And yet, even if only a handful of Israel’s Arabs have crossed the ‘security line’ (just as “only” about 200 Arab Israelis were involved in terror attacks committed between 2001 and 2004, which killed 136 Israelis), the vast majority of the sector can always count on those representatives of the Arab sector who consider the eradication of the Zionist enterprise and the Jewish state as the top priority.

This allows MK Hanin Zoabi, like the rest of the sector’s representatives in parliament, to count on those who safeguard Israeli democracy – the media, courts, universities and cultural figures – so long as they write introductions to anti-Semitic books. Zoabi herself recently wrote such an introduction for a book written by British anti-Semite Ben White. The Arab representatives board ‘Marmara’ ships and meet with Hamas leaders and enlightened Arab rulers such as Gaddafi. They tell them stories of Israeli apartheid and racism.

“Israel is the result of a colonialist act initiated by the Jewish-Zionist elites in Europe and the West,” the representatives of the Arab public in Israel determined some six years ago in their manifesto.

Three years later, when MK Jamal Zahalka yelled, “This neighborhood used to be Sheikh Munis,” before storming out of a Ramat Aviv studio following an argument with interviewer Dan Raviv, he was expressing the opinion of many members of the Arab community, not just a few extremists