Israelis Call for “Death to All Arabs” As Media Whitewashes Vigilante Murder of Palestinian Child

Warning: There is a very distressing image contained in this article.  If you do not wish to see it, please read no further.

Israeli teenagers have been patrolling Palestinian areas of Jerusalem calling for “Death to all Arabs”, a Palestinian boy is kidnapped from the streets of Jerusalem to be tortured and killed – and yet Palestine is getting the blame.  The Shuafat case epitomizes the racial bias operating in our media, and social media.

Around 04:30am on Tuesday, 17-year-old Palestinian Mohammed Abu Khdeir was thrown into a vehicle by three Israeli settlers, and less than an hour later, his tortured and burned body was found in nearby woodland. The scene was witnessed by many other residents of Shuafat, Jerusalem and captured on CCTV.

Almost immediately, the Israeli PR machine kicked in – busily excusing this inexcusable crime.

1. This was an honor killing conducted by Palestinians because Mohammed was Gay.

There is no evidence to support this claim whatsoever.  But it chimes in to presumptions about barbarity and religiosity among Arabs, so the burden of proof is correspondingly small.

Evidence to the contrary of course, is substantial.

Bands of Israeli youths have been marauding the streets of Jerusalem demanding “Death to Arabs” – while there have been widespread reports of further attempted kidnappings of Palestinian youths in the days prior and after Mohammed’s murder.

A cousin told of previous attempts to grab Arabs youths from the area.

“It started yesterday,” the man told Army Radio Wednesday. “They tried to abduct a seven-year-old boy from his mother in the street. They were riding in a black car, a Honda Civic, and tried to grab her ​​son.”

“This morning, they abducted a kid, my 15-year-old cousin, from near his house,” he continued. “Two cars from the village chased [the kidnappers] but couldn’t reach them in time.”

Ten year-old Mousa Zalum managed to escape with rough bruising on his neck after an attempted kidnap just two days before Mohammed was taken. His family called the police, but no one responded.

The kidnapping also happened to be caught on CCTV.

2. Israel Needs no Proof to Kill Palestinians

No one has even yet established who murdered the Israeli teenagers.  But the burden of proof is, as above, always on the Palestinians. As Joel Greenberg writes for McClatchy:

“Hamas is responsible and Hamas will pay,” [Netanyahu] said…. Beyond Netanyahu’s accusations of Hamas responsibilities, there is no evident link between the abduction and the Hamas leadership in the Gaza Strip. No group has claimed responsibility for the teens’ disappearances and murders….

Lt. Col. Peter Lerner, an Israeli military spokesman, noted that Hamas leaders have repeatedly called for abductions of Israelis to exchange for Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails, but he said it remained unclear whether the kidnappers of the teenagers acted on their own or on direct orders from superiors.

“We don’t feel that (such orders were) actually necessary,” Lerner said.

There you have it.  Israeli military commanders openly endorsing the extra-judicial killing of Palestinians.  No excuses or evidence required. No due process or fair trial either.

Are they Arabs? Fair game.

3. The Media White Wash

Even the most sympathetic mainstream western media reports of the slaying of Mohammed and the irrational Israeli assault on crippled Gaza will open with an image of a masked Palestinian throwing a stone, and frame the violence as ‘in retaliation’ or ‘in response to’ some convenient provocation by Palestinians. A child throws a stone at a tank -Israel blows up Gaza.  A home made rocket knocks over a trash can in Sderot, Israel blows up Gaza. The sun rises, Israel blows up Gaza.

But this logic does not work both ways – any protest or unrest from Palestinians in response to say, a teenager being kidnapped, tortured and killed is dismissed as typical Arab over-reaction and aggression.

The conflict is almost always portrayed from point of view of Israel.

Here are just a sample of reports that demonstrate the bias with which the story of this murder have been laced.

“Slaying of Palestinian Teen stokes fear of new intifada” – LA Times

“Israel on high alert as Palestinian boy killed in ‘revenge attack’ for murder of three Jewish teens is buried today” – Daily Mail

“Analysis: Arab Sex and Arab Terror” – The Algemeiner

Meanwhile, over 35,000 people had joined a Facebook group named “The people of Israel demand revenge,”. The page is full of selfies from Israelis demanding various forms of revenge be meted out upon Arabs.

A008Two girls hold a sign that reads, ‘Hating Arabs isn’t racism, it’s values. #IsraelDemandsRevenge’. (Screenshot)

The above image is Israeli blogger Ami Kaufman and a friend calling hatred of Arabs a moral thing to do – while grinning.  As sickening as this image is, far worse was happening on the page.  Below is a screen shot, with translation, of the comments related to Mohammed’s murder.

A009For several nights now, groups of Israeli teens and young adults have taken to the streets in an apparent hunt for Israeli Arabs and Palestinians upon which to enact their “revenge”.

When police finally took some action and stopped the marchers, the Israeli newspaper Haaretz reported, the demonstrators broke into smaller groups and ran through the center of the city looking for Arabs.

“While running,” the newspaper noted, “some of them were asking dark-skinned people ‘What’s the time?’ in Hebrew, in order to check for an Arab accent in the reply.”

While PM Netenyahu is now calling for calm, as the violence spirals out of all control, it was he who spoke of “vengeance” the night before Mohammed’s murder.

Young Israeli extremists chanted “Death to Arabs” in Jerusalem on Tuesday night. Maayan Nir Hasson, via YouTube

Yet in the face of all this violence and racial hatred – it is, as usual, the Palestinians who are required to shoulder the burden of proof, and who are considered inherently suspect, and intrinsically violent. It is not only in Israel that hating Arabs is considered a moral value rather than racism.

Update: There was an image believed to be the body of Mohammed Abu Khdeir.  It was in fact another Palestinian child that was murdered by the Israeli government but not Mohammed.  Our apologies.