Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

Blood Feud Spills out of Mideast

Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

Blood Feud Spills out of Mideast

Article excerpt

THE conflict between Palestinians and their Israeli occupiers has crossed a rubicon of blood that could flow around the world. The assassination in New York City of the Israeli zealot and Jewish Defense League founder Meir Kahane and the revenge murders of two innocent, elderly Palestinians in the occupied territories demonstrate this.

The simple lesson for American officials is that all high-profile Israeli and Jewish figures must be considered at risk of assassination and afforded appropriate protection. Similarly, prominent Arab personalities and communities in the US must be given improved police protection. At border points, US Immigration officers must be even more vigilant in spotting at-risk individuals and those who may pose a threat. At the federal and local levels, these additional security measures will be expensive, but failure to provide them may cost lives and add to the chaos.

In Israel, police face a rapid escalation in murders of unsuspecting Jews and Arabs by fanatics on both sides. Like elements of the PLO and Hamas, the radical Islamic fundamentalist organization which has called for the murders of Jews, some supporters of former parliament member Kahane are screaming for the death of Arabs, who Kahane wanted to evict from Israel.

Prior to the assassination, Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir had temporarily barred West Bank and Gaza Arabs from Israel. That was a desperate, if pragmatic, act and followed the murders of unarmed Palestinians by gun-packing Jews exacting vigilante "justice" for the slayings of unarmed Israelis. This most recent outbreak of sectarian violence follows the riot in Jerusalem in which 21 Palestinian stone-throwers were shot to death by Israeli police.

That incident brought down unanimous United Nations condemnation on Israel, and plunged the already strained relationship between Washington and Jerusalem into its worst period in eight years.

Shamir, himself a former terrorist and organizer of the assassination of a UN diplomat more than 40 years ago, has ordered Israeli security services to prevent further attacks by the crazies on both sides of the conflict. Yasser Arafat and his cronies, who refined terror and made it international less than 25 years ago, also know that the stage is being set for the killing of hundreds of innocents. …

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