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Official PA daily argues cartoon wasn't expressing joy at kidnapping, PMW research is based on "wishful thinking"

By Mahmoud Abu Al-Haija , editor in chief ‎for official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida

     ‎“Apparently, the Israeli governmental ‎‎[organizations] (and Palestinian Media ‎Watch, see below, - Ed.), which are ‎monitoring our paper, analyze the news ‎items, articles, op-eds and caricatures we ‎publish like astrologists purporting to ‎interpret obscure things, or read coffee ‎grounds. They are searching for clues, ‎words or pictures in order to interpret them ‎in a way that will suit their intentions and ‎objectives: to smear us with a false ‎accusation of incitement! They do not read ‎the text – whether it is a news item, article, ‎photograph or illustration – but rather, ‎project their desired political objectives on ‎it. For this reason, they viewed the ‎caricature published by us two days ago as ‎‎‘incitement’ material, and interpreted it in a ‎most peculiar way, as though we were ‎expressing, in that caricature, joy over the ‎‎‘disappearance’ of the three settlers! (the ‎reference is here to Palestinian Media ‎Watch’s exposure of this caricature, which ‎celebrated the of kidnapping three Israelis ‎teens. –Ed.)‎

The caricature was simple: the [FIFA] World ‎Cup, [formed] by three hands holding the ‎three settlers, with the word ‘Hebron’ at the ‎bottom. The meaning [of the caricature] ‎was that the most prominent event in ‎Hebron today is the ‘disappearance’ of ‎those settlers, while the world is currently ‎busy watching the World Cup games, the ‎most important and notable event in the ‎world of football.‎

The presence of the three missing [youths] ‎inside the football, in the caricature, ‎metaphorically indicates the vagueness ‎surrounding this event, and that the ‎situation has not [yet] become clear– just ‎like the [situation of the] football on the ‎football field.‎

The cup is not ours and our team is not ‎participating in the FIFA World Cup in ‎Brazil, but the violent Israeli military ‎implications of this ‘event’ for us have ‎turned it into the most prominent ‘event.’‎

Therefore, our cartoonist attempted to ‎express this, and found no way but the ‎World Cup to draw attention to the ‎magnitude of this event, and to its violent ‎consequences. So where is the joy in the ‎caricature??‎

‎… When we explain the matter, we are not ‎doing so because we fear this accusation, ‎but because we have grown tired of this ‎‎(i.e., PMW’s) Israeli monitoring [of ‎Palestinian media], which is based on ‎wishful thinking, that tells prejudiced lies ‎and knows nothing of moral balance ‎‎[which would be expressed by] monitoring ‎Israeli incitement, which incites to hatred ‎and murder [in the] most obvious and racist ‎‎[way]. The latest result [of the incitement] is ‎a Facebook page established by an Israeli ‎group named ‘Kill a Terrorist Every Hour ‎until the Jewish Hostages Return,’ with the ‎slogan ‘A Return to Jewish Morality’! It was ‎the Israeli newspaper Ma’ariv that ‎published a news item about this ‎Facebook page on its internet site two days ‎ago, saying that over 10,000 Israelis have ‎‎[already] supported this bloody call.‎

There is a proverb that says ‘the camel ‎cannot see its hump.’ Apparently, the ‎Israeli monitor is also like this camel. The ‎problem is that the hump of this monitor is ‎very, very big.‎ It does not see the occupation and its ‎policy, which does nothing but kill and ‎incite to murder and hatred.‎

Ultimately, a culture of peace is the result ‎of joint [efforts]. We do not believe that the ‎reports of the Israeli monitor are working in ‎this direction, when they hunt those words ‎and hints and remove them from their ‎context.”‎

Note: On June 12, 2014, Israeli teens Eyal Yifrach, 19, Gilad Shaar, 16, and Naftali Frenkel, 16, were kidnapped by Hamas terrorists while they were hitchhiking. The boys' bodies were found by Israeli security forces near Hebron on June 30, 2014. They appeared to have been shot to death soon after the abduction.

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