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Fatal Honors

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The massacres in Syria are joined by a new and dangerous battlefield in the Lebanon. The fanatic regime in Iran is trying to incite a bitter civil war in order to distract the West and the hostile Sunnis from its nuclear plans. The reluctance of the West to act against the Assad regime and at the very least to close the airspace for Syrian fighter jets, makes the situation difficult for decent opposition powers and opens the floodgates for sinister terror gangs.

How long will Jordan be able to stay out of this crisis? The King and the leaders of the army are cautiously keeping guard east of the Jordan. Measured against the bloody fights in the region, the Palestinians could say that it is actually "all quiet on the Western front" but something is brewing in Gaza and the West Bank and it is not quiet at all.

A few weeks ago a ceremony took place in the West Jordanian city of Jenin. Delegates of the Arab Lawyers Union visited the family of the suicide bomber Hanadi Jaradat and celebrated the 9th anniversary of her suicide bombing attack in the Maxim restaurant in Haifa, killing 21 Israeli civilian and wounding about 50. Already years ago the Palestinian Authority has published a book of poems in honor of this suicide bomber.

This is not an isolated case. Suicide bombers who are celebrated as martyrs, and have the death of women and children on their conscience, are honored in street names. Schools, cultural institutions and summer holiday camps for Palestinian children are also often named after suicide bombers. All this is common place under the government of the "moderate" Fatah Party in the West Bank. The situation in Gaza has worsened after the Egyptian revolution. Underground channels and tunnels function better than ever before and the supply of weapons to Hamas is made easier by the silence of the Egyptian border guards. Rocket attacks on the Israeli south from Gaza and regular assaults from the Sinai Peninsula, where Egyptian control leaves a lot to be desired, create a mood of crisis.

European media underestimate in a lot of ways how much this one-sided reporting, fueled by the hatred of its neighbors, affects the Israeli psyche. They are tired of the dementia and, with a shrug of their shoulders, just go their ways.