Wednesday, January 07, 2009
Hamas feeding kids a TV diet of hatred
UK Daily Telegraph Piers Akerman Wednesday, January 07, 2009 at 06:37pm ISRAEL’S Operation Cast Lead is unfolding like a familiar soap opera on the nightly news. A series of Palestinian terrorists making blood-curdling threats against Israelis, a hail of missiles aimed at Israeli civilian targets, retaliatory strikes against the terrorists - who unfailingly seek to shelter behind innocent civilians - followed by scenes of weeping parents at crowded hospitals. It is a plot line designed to soften the hardest heart. Unfortunately, those who buy the tear-jerking material unquestioningly are being duped. No one, let alone a parent raised in a Western culture, could imagine placing children directly in harm’s way or encouraging impressionable infants to worship death but that is what the thugs and murderers responsible for the slaughter in Gaza have been doing. It is an Islamist thing and Palestinian TV, often subsidised by the United Nations and European Union, is full of it. In regular drama directed at kindergarten-aged children, children are taught that martyrdom is a beautiful state to aspire to, that suicide bombers are heroes and heroines and that even cartoon characters can sing and dance and murder their way into paradise. Palestinian Media Watch and the Middle East Media Research Institute have been documenting this extraordinary perversion in recent years. Among the scripts translated from Arabic is a cute story of the four-year-old daughter of female suicide bomber Reem Riyashi, shown singing to her dead mother and swearing to follow in her explosive footsteps. The video clip, aired on Hamas TV, depicts the little child asking her mother what she is carrying (it is explosives) and why she is putting on a hijab. All is made clear when the local newspaper (and headstone) reveals that mummy dearest was no soccer-mum but indeed a bomber-mum. “Instead of me you carried a bomb in your hands. Only now, I know what was more precious than us . . . may your steps be blessed,” the little girl sings. “Send greetings to our Messenger (Mohammed) and tell him: ‘Duha loves you.’ My love will not be (merely) words. I am following Mummy in her steps.” At which point she finds some explosives her bomb-loving mum left in a drawer and picks up a stick, happily singing: “Oh Mummy, Oh Mummy.” Don’t think this is some aberration. Abhorrent agitprop is the currency of Palestinian children’s television programming, with even cartoon characters depicting martyrdom as a highly desirable goal. In a regular show on Hamas TV early last year, giant rabbit “Assud” replaced his brother “Nahoul” - a giant bee who had died after failing to get into hospital in Egypt for surgery. Assud told his young audience: “We are all ready to sacrifice ourselves for the sake of our homeland. We will sacrifice our souls and everything we own for the homeland”, vowing also to “get rid of the Jews and eat them up”. Regular viewers would recall Nahoul himself replaced “Farfour”, the Hamas mouse who was shown being “killed” on the show by an Israeli soldier in 2007. As the young female host Saraa Bahoum told her audience: “Yes, my dear children, we have lost our dearest friend Farfour. Farfour was martyred while defending his land, the land of his fathers and forefathers. He was martyred at the hand of criminals, the murderers, the murderers of innocent children who killed Iman Hijo, Muhammed Al-Dura and many others.” The martyred mouse was more likely a victim of copyright lawyers who saw too close a resemblance to Disney’s Mickey Mouse but that wasn’t in the script. The bee made that clear when he said: “I want to continue in the path of Farfour - the path of Islam, of heroism, of martyrdom, of the mujahidin. Me and my friends will follow in the footsteps of Farfour. We will take revenge upon the enemies of Allah, the killer of the prophets and of the innocent children, until we liberate Al-Aqsa from their impurity. We place our trust in Allah.” Indoctrinating children to become suicide bombers and human shields is a declared goal of Hamas, as Fathi Hamad, a representative of the terrorist organisation, proudly told the Palestine Authority Legislative Council last year. “For the Palestinian people death became an industry at which women excel and so do all people on this land: the elderly excel, the Jihad fighters excel and the children excel,” Hamad said. “Accordingly (Palestinians) created a human shield of women, children, the elderly and the Jihad fighters against the Zionist bombing machine, as if they were saying to the Zionist enemy: ‘We desire death as you desire life’.” To ensure that the “death industry” doesn’t experience a slow-down, Hamas has placed its fighters in civilian homes, schools and hospitals. It would be inhuman in the extreme not to feel sympathy for the children being used in this callous manner but it would be unintelligent not to ask why those who are exploiting them are not being called to account.