In Memory of the Fogel Family

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Last Friday night, five members of the Fogel Family, Udi, 36, Ruthie, 35, Yoav, 11, Eldad, 4, and Hadas, 3 months, were stabbed to death by Palestinian terrorists as they were asleep in their beds in the Israeli community of Itamar,  during the Sabbath.

The terrorists have been specifically linked to Fatah’s Al Aqsa Martyr’s Brigade.

Ever since the signing of the Oslo Accords, on September 13, 1993, there has been a fundamental condition placed upon the Palestinians that the incitement to hate and to kill Jews and Israelis must come to an immediate end.  Every single signed agreement has predicated the continuation of the peace process with the Palestinians upon this. The most recent signed accord, The Road Map to Middle East Peace, specifically states in Phase I that, “Palestinian leadership issues unequivocal statement reiterating Israel’s right to exist in peace and security and calling for an immediate and unconditional ceasefire to end armed activity and all acts of violence against Israelis anywhere. All official Palestinian institutions end incitement against Israel.”

However, a constant and steady stream of incitement to hate and to kill and to dehumanize the Jew has flowed from the PA, unabated. Not a week goes by when we do not receive another notification from Palestinian Media Watch (, of official incitement emanating from the very top of the Palestinian Authority’s leadership down.  They use every means possible, official PA television shows, textbooks, newspaper columns, contests, music on the radio, sermons from PA appointed imams in mosques, naming streets, squares and schools after terrorists.

For the last eighteen years, the Palestinian as have created a culture that has been permeated with a de-humanization of the Jew and the Israeli that is reminiscent of the pages of Der Strummer , that permeated Nazi Germany prior to the Holocaust.

This sort of de-sensitization of the humanity of the Jew, or the “other” is the first phase to prepare one’s people for the slaughter of another. The Palestinian Authority uses every means possible, including their official newspaper, Al Hayatt- Al Jadida, which last week, announced that the football tournament would be named after Wafa Idris, the first female Palestinian suicide bomber. Two months ago, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas announced that he would be awarding $2,000 to the family of a terrorist who had attacked Israeli soldiers.

On August 23, 2009, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said at a hearing before a House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee of the Appropriations Committee, “We will only work with a Palestinian Government that unambiguously and explicitly accepts the Quartet’s principles: A commitment to nonviolence, recognition of Israel, and acceptance of previous agreements and obligations, including the Road Map.”

Our State Department has willfully blinded itself to the constant and steady drumbeat of incitement to hate and to kill that by now had metastasized throughout Palestinian and Arab society.  By constantly looking the other way, and giving the Palestinians a “free pass”, our State Department as well as the entire international community is complicit in creating the atmosphere that has led up to the Fogel family murders.

Moreover: If America is going to position itself in the middle of these agreements, as the “honest” broker, the operative word is “honest”. What does this make of our American credibility and international prestige when we put conditions for furthering the peace process on one party that are willfully ignored? If America is going to put its imprimatur on an agreement, she should stand by her word.

There is no nation on this planet that has had deeper and wider moral scrutiny than the state of Israel, who for over the past 63 years has proven over and over again how interested they are in living in peace with their neighbors, but like every other nation, must first and foremost according to Article 41 of the United Nations Charter, defend the security of its citizens. And there has been no other entity that , for the past eighteen years, has been given such a “free pass” by the international community as the Palestinians, who have been regarded as the darlings of the world.

One of the surviving three children of the Fogel Family, 12 year old Tamar, promised her relatives, “I will now be a mother to my siblings.”

No child should have to go through this.  Ever. We must pledge in memory of the buried members of the Fogel Family, from this moment on,  to predicate American foreign policy on the truth-and only the truth- and to once and for all stop the papering over and the obfuscation for the hatred that is rampant within the culture of the Palestinian Authority, from the top down.

These should be the last five innocent Jews buried because of this culture of hatred. And because of our looking the other way.

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About the Author

Sarah Stern
Sarah Stern is founder and president of the Endowment for Middle East Truth (EMET).

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