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Mother celebrates son’s Martyrdom death

Itamar Marcus and Nan Jacques Zilberdik  |
Mother celebrates son's Martyrdom death:
"All mothers should sacrifice their child for Palestine"

by Itamar Marcus and Nan Jacques Zilberdik
Palestinian Authority TV news recently chose to feature a Palestinian mother promoting her son's death as a positive goal.

Upon learning of her son's death in an Israeli air strike, the mother explained that she had always hoped for her son's Shahada - death as a Martyr -- and recommended that other mothers likewise "sacrifice their child for Palestine."

The words of another woman, chosen by PA TV news for the pre-recorded news report, described how Palestinian society sees Martyrs as grooms. This is based on the Islamic tradition, promoted actively by the PA and Hamas, that Martyrs will marry 72 virgins in Paradise.

PA TV news report:
Mother upon news of son's death in an Israeli air strike: "We had always hoped for his [my son's] Martyrdom (Shahada), knowing he wanted to die as a Martyr (Shahid). Every time he went out, we would say to him, 'May Allah be with you.' We knew that he wanted to die as a Martyr. Praise to Allah, he sought Martyrdom, and he achieved it. My message to every mother is to sacrifice her child for Palestine."
Second woman: "By Allah, we welcome every Martyr as if he were a groom among us."
[PA TV (Fatah), Feb. 11, 2010]

Palestinian Media Watch has documented that these two ideas -- that death is a higher value than life and that Martyrdom death leads to a wedding between the Martyr and the virgins of Paradise -- have been promoted actively by both the Palestinian Authority and Hamas for years.

Palestinian schoolbooks teach children that aspiring to death is better than life:

"O heroes, Allah has promised you victory ... Do not talk yourselves into flight...
Your enemies seek life while you seek death."
They seek spoils to fill their empty stomachs while you seek a Garden [Paradise] as wide as are the heavens and the earth...
Death is not bitter in the mouth of the believers. These drops of blood that gush from your bodies will be transformed tomorrow into blazing red meteors that will fall down upon the heads of your enemies." 
[Reading and Texts Part II, Grade 8, p. 16. Schoolbook currently in use in PA schools.]

A music video broadcast on PA TV from the year 2000 until as recently as Feb. 7, 2010, depicts a Martyr being greeted in Paradise by the Virgins all dressed in white. Click here to view.

The two mothers' statements in the PA TV news broadcast reiterate how successfully these messages have been transmitted to the Palestinian public. Palestinian Media Watch has documented many examples of parents celebrating their children's Martyrdom deaths.

On Jan. 1, 2010, as reported by PMW, a Hamas TV cleric described the six rewards in Paradise granted the Martyr upon dying.

1- The Shahid's sins are forgiven
2- He sees his place in Paradise and lives a full life of joy with Allah
3- He is protected from "the Great Shock" on Judgment Day
4- He is crowned with a crown of honor
5- He marries 72 Dark-Eyed wives
6- He will be able to intervene on behalf of 70 of his family members on Judgment Day, thereby ensuring them the reward of Afterlife
The cleric added: "One description of the Dark-Eyed: 'If one of the women of Paradise would look towards the earth, she would light up everything between heaven and earth.'" Click here to view.

To see more examples from PMW's archives of Palestinian Shahada promotion, click here.
To see more examples from PMW's archives of the success of Shahada promotion, click here. To see more examples from PMW's archives about the 72 virgins awaiting the Martyr in Paradise, click here.