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On PA TV: Glorification of Fogel family murderers

Itamar Marcus and Nan Jacques Zilberdik  |
On PA TV: Glorification of Fogel family murderers

Mother of Hakim Awad, killer of 5 Fogel family members:
"My greetings to dear Hakim, the apple of my eye,
who carried out the operation in Itamar, sentenced to 5 life sentences"

Aunt of Hakim Awad:
"Hakim Awad, the hero, the legend"

PA TV host:
"We [PA TV] also convey our greetings to them"

Itamar Marcus and Nan Jacques Zilberdik

Twice last week, official Palestinian Authority TV broadcast greetings to the murderers of the Fogel family from the relatives of the killers and from the PA TV host.

On March 11, 2011, five members of the Fogel family were killed in their home in the Israeli town Itamar by Palestinian terrorists from the Awad family. Hakim Awad led the attack, killing the parents Ehud and Ruth and three of their children, aged 11 years, 4 years, and 2 months.

The weekly PA TV program For You dedicated to Palestinian prisoners in Israeli prisons let the mother and aunt of one of the murderers praise the terrorists as "heroes." After the mother of the murderer Hakim Awad explained how she is prevented from visiting her son for security reasons, the PA TV host said: "Go ahead, sister, we can convey your voice."

On the phone, Hakim Awad's mother "blesses" her "dear son," and despite the fact that participants in this TV program normally do not mention the terror attacks for which their relatives are serving time, the mother mentions that her son is the one who "carried out the operation in Itamar and sentenced to 5 life sentences," referring to her son's brutal killings in the town Itamar.

Hakim Awad's aunt also participated in the program and referred to the terrorists involved in the killings as "heroes," calling Hakim Awad "the hero, the legend." This prompted the PA TV host to add: "We, for our part, also convey our greetings to them."

It was Hakim Awad who killed Ehud and Ruth Fogel and their young children with a knife. The other Awad family members praised on the program as "heroes" were either accessories to the murders or helped destroy evidence.

Although this was a phone conversation, the editors of the PA TV program and its host did know in advance that the callers were relatives of the Fogel murderers. The host introduced them before the conversation took place and a text with the names of the callers appeared at the bottom of the screen: "Prisoner Hakim Awad's family / Awarta - Nablus."

The program was broadcast on official PA TV on January 19 and 21.

The following is the full transcript of the greetings on PA TV:

PA TV host: "We have a call from the family of prisoner Hakim Awad."
Mother of Hakim Awad: "I thank you for connecting me with my son, because I and all of the family are prevented for security reasons [from visiting him].
Host: "Go ahead, sister, we can convey your voice."
Mother of Hakim Awad: "My greetings to dear Hakim, the apple of my eye, from the village of Awarta, 17 years old, who carried out the operation in Itamar (i.e., killing of 5 Fogel family members), sentenced to 5 life sentences and another 5 years, in prison."
Aunt of Hakim Awad: "I'm the sister of prisoner Hassan Awad and of Salah Awad; [I am] Um Habib, from the village of Awarta. My warm greetings to all the great heroic prisoners, to my brother Hassan Awad, head of the village council; to my brother Salah Awad, the heroic prisoner journalist; to the heroic, resolute prisoner, the lion, Yazid Awad, my nephew; and to my nephew Hakim Awad, the hero, the legend."
Host: "We [PA TV], for our part, also convey our greetings to them."
Aunt of Hakim Awad: "I dedicate this song to Hassan Awad, Yazid Awad, Hakim Awad, and Salah Awad, in prison:
'My brother, in solitary confinement, your voice calls to me
You dare not throw down the rifle
That is what the homeland asked of me
In your eyes, we are all self-sacrificing fighters.
I convey greetings to the sound of the bullets of Ahmad Sa'adat and Hakim Awad.'"
Host: "Thank you for being with us, the family of prisoners Hassan and Salah Awad of Awarta."
[PA TV (Fatah), Jan. 19 and 21, 2012]
Ahmad Sa'adat, mentioned in the song recited by Hakim Awad's aunt, is serving a 30-year sentence for heading the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine terror organization. He has also been honored in broadcasts on PA TV for having planned the assassination of Israeli Minister of Tourism Rehavam Ze'evi in 2001, but has not yet been tried for that crime.
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