Palestinian murders two Israeli civilian coworkers; Palestinians celebrate by dispensing sweets and hailing the killer; Western media largely ignores the murders

Imagine, if you will, that Israeli civilians crept over the border into Palestine, where they’re not allowed to live, and killed Palestinian civilians by shooting or stabbing them, or hitting them with cars. Imagine, too, that Israelis rejoiced in the streets when this happened, and even handed out sweets to fellow Israelis in celebration. Finally, imagine that if the Israeli terrorists were caught and killed, or jailed in Palestine, the Israeli government would give their families a handsome stipend in reward for the murders.

If the world knew this to be true, Israel would (rightly) be excoriated even more than it is now. For rewarding the killing of civilians, and celebrating it in public, is beyond odious. But, in fact, this is exactly what happens in Palestine when Israeli citizens are subject to terrorist attacks and murders. Palestinians celebrate, hand out sweets, and then, in the infamous “pay for slay” program, Mahmoud Abbas and his PLO hand out generous stipends to the families of Palestinian terrorists who are jailed or killed by Israelis after terrorist attacks (see here and here).

This is exactly what happened two days ago when two Israelis who worked in a West Bank factory were shot by a Palestinian coworker (who also injured another Israeli), in a terrorist attack that has been praised by Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and Fatah (see the New York Times report here). The gunman, Ashraf Naalwa, 23, is still on the loose, and the IDF is trying to track him down. He first handcuffed 28-year old-Kim Levengrond Yehezkel, a secretary, and shot her to death. He then shot another Israeli, not killing her, before dispatching Ziv Hagbi, 35, an accountant, with a shot to the head. All these people worked for the Alon Group, a waste-management company in the West Bank. Ironically, the company was well known for employing Palestinians and Israelis together, and for the (up to now) harmonious workspace.

Here are the dead:

Ziv Hagbi was also married and had children:

World reaction was predictable: Fatah (a part of the PLO, whose chairman is Abbas, also head of the Palestinian Authority) said this, blaming the incident on Israeli policy:

On the official Facebook page of Abbas’ Fatah Movement, a Fatah official blamed Israel for the murders, stating that “Israel… is incapable of protecting anyone that steals the Palestinian land” and announced that no Israeli is safe until the Palestinian people gain “its rights in its homeland.” Israel, he said, uses “terror and murder,” while he himself coined yesterday’s killing of two Israeli civilians an “operation.” [Official Fatah Facebook page, Oct. 7, 2018]

Other Palestinian organizations chimed in:

The terror organization Hamas called the murders “a heroic operation” and a “natural response to the Israeli occupation’s crimes.” The terror organization Islamic Jihad also justified the attack as “natural,” and added that “the settlements are a legitimate target for people of the resistance.” The movement also called for more attacks, encouraging people to “carry out intifada against the settlement terror, until its removal and the liberation of the West Bank from the settlements and the settlers.” [Ma’an, independent Palestinian news agency, Oct. 7, 2018]

While both the Washington Post and New York Times have reported on the story, the initial Times headline gave accurate details of the incident but then carried a headline that cast some doubt on the story (they changed the headline, but if the first report was accurate, why the headline?):

I find no mention of this killing in Salon, Slate, or HuffPo, though it does appear in Breitbart, the Daily Wire, and The Daily Mail.  But of course had it been an Israeli who killed two Palestinian civilians, it would have been everywhere.

You won’t find many left-wing bloggers dealing with this. Indeed, the screenshot below (click on it to go to article) shows three other UK sites that have ignored the incident as well as a recent and similar attack:

It’s especially bad because, as usual, Palestinians handed out sweets in the street to celebrate the killings. This is disgusting and reprehensible behavior, but unfortunately ubiquitous in Palestine. (See other pictures of Palestinians celebrating terrorism by giving out sweets here.) The Palestine-loving Left ignores this behavior as part of the racism of low expectations. But of course if Israelis did it, or rewarded the killing of civilians, it would be all over the media.


If Naalwa is caught, as he almost certainly will be, his family will get lots of money (see here, here, here, and here for descriptions of the “pay for slay” program (aka “The Martyrs Fund”) of the PLO, which is subsidized by foreign donations that free the PLO to use its own money for paying “martyrs”.

The celebration of the murders by Abbas’s organization and by Hamas, and the payment of stipends to Palestinian murderers who are caught or killed, does nothing less than encourage further murders, as does the religiously-promoted notion that one achieves “martyrdom” by killing Jews. (The PLO stipends are given out to Palestinians who kill Jews, Jewish tourists, and even non-Jewish American tourists in Israel.

When I posted a notice about this on my personal Facebook page, decrying the hypocrisy that celebrates all that is Palestine while demonizing all that is Israel, and that also ignores these nefarious Palestinian deeds and policies, I got a comment typical of many American liberals (poor grammar and spelling were in the original comment):

Am I supposed to believe that the thousands of Palestinian families that have be killed by the IDF are of no value by comnparison with these people? That is the most blatantly racism possible.

This, my friends, is the racism (or bigotry if you will) of low expectations. This kind of belief means that any killing of Israeli civilians can be justified. (I said nothing in my original post about the value of Palestinian lives.) Just say that “the IDF kills civilians” (it tries desperately to avoid doing that, by the way), and you’re home free: any Palestinian terrorism and murder can be justified by saying “Israel does it too.”

I am no diehard booster of Israeli policy, and I favor a two-state solution (not the one Palestinian state envisioned by groups like the BDS movement), but I am sickened by the hypocrisy of the British and American Left, who resolutely ignore officially sponsored or remunerated Palestinian terrorism and murder of civilians.

Oh, and please don’t bother to comment if you want to say that these two Israelis had it coming because of their government’s policy. That is a monstrous attitude—just as monstrous as it would be to justify the deliberate killing of Palestinian civilians by Israeli terrorists because of the PA and Hamas’s policies.


h/t: Malgorzata


  1. Mikeyc
    Posted October 9, 2018 at 10:38 am | Permalink

    Appalling and unsurprising. All the way round. The left has betrayed too many of its fundamentals. This is part of the reason why so many have abandoned them and, with despair, are drifting to the right.

  2. nay
    Posted October 9, 2018 at 11:36 am | Permalink

    Gaaaahhhh! First, build trust; then, betray trust. This is a form of the islamic code: it is okay (even righteous) to LIE to infidels; it is righteous to kill unarmed infidels who have befriended you. Too bad I don’t believe in god/heaven/hell – it would be nice to believe that such people would get a truly righteous surprise in the end, but that won’t happen.

    Thanks for pointing these things out, Professor, even though it makes me want to make my morning coffee an Irish one.

  3. BJ
    Posted October 9, 2018 at 12:18 pm | Permalink

    “The Palestine-loving Left ignores this behavior as part of the racism of low expectations. But of course if Israelis did it, or rewarded the killing of civilians, it would be all over the media.”

    It’s not the racism of low expectations, but the racism of “Palestinians good, Israelis bad.” If the Palestinians do something terrible, it’s ignored out of convenience (or, among the more extreme lefties, becsuse they think its justified to fight the “oppressors”), not because the regressive Left expects too little of them.

  4. Malgorzata
    Posted October 9, 2018 at 12:38 pm | Permalink


  5. Randall Schenck
    Posted October 9, 2018 at 12:50 pm | Permalink

    I have no idea how any human individuals could do anything but condemn the terrorism of the Palestinians but then, what do I know. You put up a post right after this about colored hair and have 75 comments while here you have three.

    My question to them, only as an observer is to always ask, what kind of strategy is this? If Israel is the perceived enemy how is the years long terrorism suppose to win over your enemy. I would say it is a pretty good chance it will not and you need to change your actions if you want to achieve anything worthwhile. First explain what it is you are after and I would then give you some ideas on how to get there. But if terrorism is all you have, you will get nothing and you will never achieve any of your goals.

    • Posted October 9, 2018 at 1:06 pm | Permalink

      I know; it’s a bit distressing to me that this post, which I worked on for a LONG time, gets five comments to date but the hair-color post, which took all of five minutes, has about 80. Maybe everyone agrees with me about Palestinian behavior here, but I don’t think so. You can defend it if you wish; all I ask is that you be civil and not engage in name calling.

      • James
        Posted October 9, 2018 at 1:53 pm | Permalink

        Banter is quicker and easier than substantive comments on a complex issue. Add in the warning at the end of the post (doesn’t matter how you intended it, it was a warning) and the fact that this post gets fewer comments than the hair one is entirely predictable.

      • Randall Schenck
        Posted October 9, 2018 at 2:45 pm | Permalink

        Yes, and I do not mean to demean those who wish to comment on the hair color business. If hundreds wish to it is fine with me. I do think this posting is substantial and could open up several areas for comment. I do not know many people who are pro terrorism of any kind and the murder of innocent people is the worst thing we have. At least it is until we see it celebrated by others and that just brings it to a level that cannot be explained. Any people that reach such a low level for themselves simply cannot be defended. So if this is the normal for the Palestinian people they will never get objective or fair minded people to their side.

      • BJ
        Posted October 9, 2018 at 5:34 pm | Permalink

        In addition to what James said, I would add that it’s also often difficult for me to read depressing news and comment on it. Sometimes, I will read the headline of a post and just keep scrolling because I can’t deal with it at that moment. More lighthearted posts are easier to consume and comment on from an emotional standpoint.

        • Mark R.
          Posted October 9, 2018 at 7:03 pm | Permalink

          I agree with this. Back in the Obama days, I was able to read depressing news stories thoughtfully and without too much distress. Now, with Trump, SCOTUS, Congress, bullshit reality in general, I “tune out” a lot of these depressing stories; especially stories where I feel hopeless searching for a good solution.

  6. Posted October 9, 2018 at 1:26 pm | Permalink

    I did not commyuntil I

  7. Peter
    Posted October 9, 2018 at 1:57 pm | Permalink

    “That is a monstrous attitude—just as monstrous as it would be to justify the deliberate killing of Palestinian civilians by Israeli terrorists because of the PA and Hamas’s policies.”
    Did you ever write a post on any of the last cases?

    • Posted October 9, 2018 at 2:19 pm | Permalink

      Which ‘last cases’ are you referring to?

    • Posted October 9, 2018 at 3:03 pm | Permalink

      Yep, I wrote about the Israeli teenagers who killed a Palestinian kid, and who were then tried and put in prison. Go here to see the post:

      I am an equal opportunity deplorer of terrorism, but of course the Palestinians practice it more than the Israelis, so I have more to write about with the former.

      By the way, that’s a really snotty post you made, given its implications. I doubt you were JAQing.

      • JR
        Posted October 9, 2018 at 6:54 pm | Permalink

        And of course, when the Israelities mess up, they admit it.

        See, e.g.

        ‘The Israeli military on Tuesday censured soldiers who filmed and
        cheered the shooting of a Palestinian man across the barrier fence in Gaza
        several months ago […]’

        ‘[…] a leading […] legislator in the Israeli parliament, denounced the
        video, saying it horrifies the soul. The shooter should be prosecuted, he
        said, but added, The commander who gave the order to shoot an unarmed
        protester is the real danger.’

        Very different from paying out the family of the terrorist after they are caught and executed/jailed.

  8. Posted October 9, 2018 at 2:02 pm | Permalink

    Start over.

    I did not post until I read Randall’s comment and the response because I because I had nothing helpful to say. The killings are condemnable as are the thought processes that lead to them.
    But after you say that then what do you say. I have said before I don’t see any movement or possibly of a twofold state solution.

    When two groups are at war ir in conflict it will continue until at least one side decided to concede defeat and give in to the demands of the other, or until both sides decide they have had enough and make peace.

    Neither side in this case is willing to agre to the demands of the other.

    At least one side wants to continue the fight.

    When one side cannot beat the other by military action the only choice is what we used to call gorilla war. Now they call it terrorism. We used it in South Carolina against the British during the revolutionary war. The Ftench underground used it during WWII against the Germans. The Jews used it in the forties against the British. Irish used it against England for fifty years or more, killing the Queen’s brother in law. The American Indians used it against the Europeans until they were almost completely wiped ourt and put on reservations. Some Natives still live on reversatio s in Doris conditions today. Others have assimilated. My grandmother was up to one fourth Native American but assimilated and only one of my cousins had ever discussed it with me, although most of my grandmother’s children and grandchildren obviously appear to be part Natuve American. It was just something that was not mdntiouor discussed. The county I grew up in in North Georgia was lush that. There were many full and part Cherokee.We all knew but no one discussed it expcept in the home with the door closed.
    North Georgia was split evenly during the American Civil War. There were executions without trial, murders, and people were burned out. After the war it stopped but people remembered got s hundred years. The two factions had separate churches, funeral homes etc for a hundred years.

    The only way to solve the problems with the native Americans and north south fivideuwax by forming one country and assimilating. That is the only soluI see in Palistine, now known as Israel. Until one side decides to assimilate into the other and the other lets them the divide will continue to fester and the festering will result from time to time in violence.

    In the Southern United States whites refused to let blacks assimilate untll forced to be hhd north in the civil rights era. Assimilation is taking place now but violence continues to erupt.

    That is just my opinion. But I have been thinking about the conflict did a long time.

    Sorry about the length but I could not find a way way to get myself to stop typing. This is dull I do now. I read books and blog.

    I appteuyou letting me and others express ourselves and allow free speech and an occasional rant. Being civil is difficult in some situations as some topics invoke strong feelings.

    • Posted October 9, 2018 at 2:06 pm | Permalink

      Sorry for all the typos. I type the words right but the predictive (or whatever) software makes changes and today I failed to go back and look for them and correct them.

    • Posted October 9, 2018 at 2:16 pm | Permalink

      The only evidence I have if my grsndmother’s heritage is her picture. And the inability to identify many of her ancestors past her parents. She could be up to one half Cherokee. She sure looks Cherokee.

      I empathize with Elizabeth Warren. She made public her unprovable belief that she was part Cherokee. Now she is stuck with it .

      • Paul S
        Posted October 9, 2018 at 2:34 pm | Permalink

        “Looks Cherokee” Not sure what that means but before you claim to be a Native American Indian you should track your heritage on a tribal roster. The records are surprisingly extensive.

        • Posted October 9, 2018 at 3:27 pm | Permalink

          Funny to me that you don’t know what a Native American looks like.

          I have checked all he rolls under the names I have but the problem is the names of almost all of the ancestors of her parents are unknown,

          I should have been more careful on my comment not to claim she was part Cherokee but to qualify all my remarks to saying may have been.

          That is what I have always done in the past. My discussions have been limited to one cousin and my wife and children.

    • Posted October 9, 2018 at 2:34 pm | Permalink

      When one side cannot beat the other by military action the only choice is what we used to call gorilla war. Now they call it terrorism.

      Guerilla war is directed against opposing soldiers; terrorism is directed against civilians.

      • Posted October 9, 2018 at 2:46 pm | Permalink

        Maybe terrorism isn’t even the right word for this — terrorism is directed at random civilians for a political effect. This seems to be intended as a kind of trans-generational piecemeal genocide.

      • Posted October 9, 2018 at 4:10 pm | Permalink

        Then the attck on our marine barracks in Lebanon when Regean was president that killed several hundred Marines was gorilla war. Strange that for forty or so years it has been called terrorism. Same with many more attacks on our troops the last thirty years all over the world. I will notify CNN et al so they can change their terms.

    • eric
      Posted October 9, 2018 at 8:31 pm | Permalink

      I mostly agree; this the Israel-Palestine conflict is really a low-simmering war. Until significant majorities on both sides want the conflict to stop, it will continue.

      I also think foreign funding has a lot to do with it; as Upton Sinclair (and many others have) said, “It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it.” A lot of salaries depend on this conflict continuing, unfortunately.

  9. Paul S
    Posted October 9, 2018 at 2:28 pm | Permalink

    It’ difficult to comment on these posts. There is no excuse for terrorism, the behavior of the Palestinians is reprehensible and will not change unless we publicly confront it.
    That seems unlikely given the media seems too frightened to report it.

  10. Posted October 9, 2018 at 2:43 pm | Permalink

    CNN called it a ‘workplace shooting’ and the Guardian added the usual “Israeli army says…” and ended with a list of their idea of Palestinian grievances. As always, Palestinians are seen as infantile robots incapable of controlling their impulses, and Jews are seen as having collectively brought it on themselves.

    Understanding the Israel/Palestine conflict is certainly not easy, but separating the personal from the political is — the left prides itself on the ability to do so in the case of every other nationality. they never picket Indonesian people or businesses for the genocidal activities in East Timor and Irian Jaya; never take bold stands about the dispute over Kashmir; didn’t complain when Jordan steals Palestinian territory, or Kuwait expelled 100s of thousands of Palestinian guest workers; never demand right of return for the Jews driven out of Arabian countries or call for boycotts of those countries….

  11. John
    Posted October 9, 2018 at 6:11 pm | Permalink

    Thank you Mr. Coyne for this post. Your cited views articulate a facet of the argument liberal minded (US citizens) engage with against our leftist brethren with regard to the Israel-Palestine conflict, that largely goes unnoticed. Thanks again.

  12. Giselle
    Posted October 9, 2018 at 7:39 pm | Permalink

    Israeli general Zvika Fogel on the official Israeli policy of killing Palestinian children in the protests in Gaza:

    Fogel: At the tactical level, any person who gets close to the fence, anyone who could be a future threat to the border of the State of Israel and its residents, should bear a price for that violation. If this child or anyone else gets close to the fence in order to hide an explosive device or check if there are any dead zones there or to cut the fence so someone could infiltrate the territory of the State of Israel to kill us …

    Q: Then, then his punishment is death?

    Fogel: His punishment is death. As far as I’m concerned then yes, if you can only shoot him to stop him, in the leg or arm – great. But if it’s more than that then, yes, you want to check with me whose blood is thicker, ours or theirs.

    • Posted October 9, 2018 at 7:46 pm | Permalink

      Could you tell us what point you’re trying to make here by quoting a general who says that Israel shoots children propagandized into cutting the border fence or carrying explosive devices? (You don’t mention, of course, that the Palestinians deliberately enlist brainwashed kids to be mini-terrorists, knowing they’ll be killed and can be used for propaganda. Do you think that’s ok–using child terrorists?)

      And are you trying to say that the Palestinian murders of Israel civilians NOT TRYING TO ATTACK PALESTINE is somehow okay because of this quote? I find it hard to believe that someone can be so obtuse.

      • Mikeyc
        Posted October 9, 2018 at 9:05 pm | Permalink

        I doubt Giselle is being obtuse. (S)He is dissembling, knowing full well the Palestinians are the terrorists. Just doesn’t care.

    • Michael Waterhouse
      Posted October 9, 2018 at 10:35 pm | Permalink

      Gisselle, can you really think that Israeli military defending itself from actions with murderous intent, which is what the General was specifying, whether by children or anyone else, is in any way comparable to tying up and shooting to death at close range a co worker who was probably friendly, and then doing it again and again, to friendly co workers, is at all similar?
      If so, your mental functions need a review, because there is zero similarity.
      Your point is meaningless.

      • Posted October 28, 2018 at 12:56 pm | Permalink

        She is just to show us that the antisemites are here, are numerous and strong and do not intend to stay silent.

  13. CAS
    Posted October 9, 2018 at 8:21 pm | Permalink

    The far left has lost touch with reality with respect to Israel. Christians have claimed their excuse for hating Jews is Jewish responsibility for the death of Jesus (who probably never existed). This is insanity, since they have supposedly been redeemed by his death.
    I don’t see any real reason why many Muslims hate Jews. Muslim beliefs seem to have mostly been adopted wholesale from the Jews with some additions from Christianity, and they prayed towards Jerusalem until Mohammad received another “revelation”. I find it very difficult to understand the hate stirred up by the Abrahamic religions. I wonder if they are cultural tools selected for denigration of outsiders and creation of separation between competing societies. Makes it easier to kill outsiders and steal their stuff if your God hates them.

    • eric
      Posted October 9, 2018 at 8:52 pm | Permalink

      I don’t see any real reason why many Muslims hate Jews.

      They’re different. They keep themselves apart. They choose not to integrate into the dominant culture. They worship different Gods. They don’t follow our customs. Their habits are dirty. Etc. The majority scapegoating a minority is not really an unusual historical thing. Certainly both Christians and Muslims hated on Jews long before the state of Israel appeared on the map.

    • Posted October 9, 2018 at 9:37 pm | Permalink

      There are some good books on the origins of Christianity that discuss the relationship between Christians and Jews. Elaine Pagels has written several that I would recommend. I have read two of her books.

  14. Michael Waterhouse
    Posted October 9, 2018 at 10:41 pm | Permalink

    I don’t care what level of seething hatred you carry, turning on a co worker like that is the lowest of the low.

    On the lefts idiot position, it is deplorable, and so disappointing.

  15. Forse
    Posted October 10, 2018 at 6:19 am | Permalink

    Jerry 100% agree

  16. Posted October 28, 2018 at 1:04 pm | Permalink

    Thank you for this post.

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