“The religious dimension of the conflict is very dangerous and explosive, because it has implications for the Palestinians and for Muslims everywhere in the world. We have to do everything possible to instill calm.”
Shin Bet Head Contradicts Prime Minister, Says Abbas, PA Don’t Want Terror, 3rd Intifada, Says MKs Should Stay Off Temple Mount
Shmarya Rosenberg • FailedMessiah.com
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas did not directly incite yesterday’s gruesome terror attack at a Har Nof haredi synagogue, but his poor choices of language and sharp criticisms of Israel have helped to open the door for the violence that has swept the eastern parts of Israel’s capital city since July, Yoram Cohen, the head of Israel’s Internal Security Service commonly known as the Shin Bet, said yesterday after the attack, Ha'aretz and many other Israeli media reported.
The two Arab terrorists who slaughtered five people preparing to pray at Kehilat Bnei Torah, a West Jerusalem haredi synagogue, Tuesday morning did not have security records and did not act under the framework of any terrorist organization, Cohen told Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee members after the attack.
Cohen also reportedly said the no one among the PA’s leadership is calling for violence. He also pointed out that Abbas reiterated that the path of Intifada should be rejected.
“Abu Mazen [Abbas] is not interested in terror, and is not leading [his people] to terror. Nor is he doing so 'under the table.' [However,] there are people in the Palestinian community who are liable to see Abu Mazen’s words of criticism [of Israel’s actions] as legitimization for taking [violent terrorist] action,” Cohen said.
Cohen’s remarks directly contradict claims made by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu about Abbas.
Cohen also told the committee that the murder of East Jerusalem youth 16-year-old Mohammed Abu Khdeir Palestinian by three right-wing haredi and ex-haredi Jews in early July was a decisive event that led to the outbreak of major clashes between Arabs and police in East Jerusalem that continue to this day. MKs who went up on the Temple Mount and a proposed bill to change the status quo for control of it just made things much worse. Cohen called for moderation and rapprochement and said that public figures should not go up to the Temple Mount now because of the volatile reaction this provokes among Palestinians.
“The religious dimension of the conflict is very dangerous and explosive, because it has implications for the Palestinians and for Muslims everywhere in the world. We have to do everything possible to instill calm,” Cohen reportedly said.
But Cohen did not give Abbas a free pass. He pointed out that Abbas’ statements about the Temple Mount and Jerusalem – which he called “incitement” – did contribute to violence in the city, even if his goal was not a third Intifada and waves of terror attacks against Jews.
"Recent incitement by the Palestinian Authority leadership, led by Abbas, on issues related to Jerusalem and the Temple Mount, contributes and influences the high level of violence on the ground, specifically in Jerusalem," Cohen said.
After the murders yesterday, Netanyahu and other senior government leaders accused Abbas of the incitement and said that his words provoked the synagogue attack.
“It is the direct result of the incitement being led by Hamas and Abu Mazen [Abbas],” Netanyahu said.
Economy Minister Naftali Bennett of the right-wing Zionist Orthodox HaBayit HaYehudi Party was even more blunt and accused Abbas as being “one of the greatest terrorists” and accused him of “declar[ing] war” on Israel.
“Abu Mazen, one of the greatest terrorists spawned by the Palestinian nation, bears direct responsibility for the blood of the Jews that was spilled on the tallit and tefillin [prayer shawl and phylacteries]. At a time when we were preoccupied with illusions about the diplomatic process, the Palestinians were preparing an infrastructure of combined terror and incitement. Even concrete barricades don’t stop terror, but instead encourage it. Abu Mazen has declared war on Israel and we have to respond accordingly,” Bennett reportedly said.
[Hat Tip: Ben Max.]