Where’s the Outrage?

Seriously.  Where is the outrage?

I wish I didn’t have to ask that, and I almost didn’t.  When news broke of the horrific terrorist attacks yesterday in Israel, there was immense outpouring of support.  Social media was abuzz with pictures, articles, and wishes of a speedy recovery to the 12 Israelis injured in terrorist attacks yesterday.

As news began to filter in, the world learned that 12 Israelis were injured and an American graduate student killed, all while Vice President Biden was in the area.  We saw the true indomitable spirit of Israel, embodied in Yonatan Azrihav who pulled the knife out of his own neck and neutralized the terrorist who tried to kill him.  The world learned about the Israeli musician, Yishai Montgomery, who chased down a terrorist and subdued him with his guitar until police arrived and killed the terrorist in a gunfight.  We learned the name of the American student who was killed, Taylor Force, of blessed memory, a US Army veteran and graduate of West Point.

What we did not see was the outrage pouring out over yet another American who had his life cut short by a Palestinian terrorist who only cared about killing as many people as possible.

In a way, we shouldn’t be shocked about the silence from American media outlets and President Obama, should we?  In November, 2015, when Ezra Schwartz, of blessed memory, was tragically killed by a Palestinian terrorist, it took over a week for President Obama to extend his condolences to the family.  A friend of mine, Brandon Wolfe, wrote an outstanding article that his murder needed to be a wake up call to Jews everywhere.

It can be taken a step farther now after the gruesome murder of yet another American at the hands of bloodthirsty Palestinian terrorists. Immediately after the name and information about Mr. Force came out, the Israeli Prime Minister wrote many outstanding posts.  His office flooded social media with condolences to the family of Taylor Force.

One has to ask, where is President Obama?  Will the President of the United States, who serves as Commander in Chief of the Army that Taylor Force so diligently served, offer a statement reiterating the United States commitment to backing Israel’s attempts to combat these terrorists?  The sad answer is that he will probably fall back on his old trope of “urging restraint” on both sides, if he even makes a statement at all.  These deplorable acts of violence against Americans demand something more than placing democratic, free Israel on the same moral plane as Muslim terrorists from the West Bank and Gaza.  Where has the outrage been from the international, and more specifically, the American media?  Well to answer that, one has to only look at the headlines published after the attacks.

The media has always been a vehicle that terror groups like Hamas have used to continue their war against Israel and western values.  It is a shame that “respectable” news outlets such as CNN, International Business Times, and One News Now publish absurdly bias headlines. As an example, CNN’s headline after the attack read this: “’Terrorist’ Kills U.S. Tourist, Wounds 10 Others in Israel–Near Joe Biden Visit Site.”  No, CNN, a ‘terrorist’ did not kill an American, a terrorist did.  Putting quotation marks around “terrorist” places doubt that the man who walked up to average citizens and began hacking away was intent on committing mass murder.

How could the editor let an article such as that go to press?  At the point when an American was killed and 12 Israelis wounded, including two shot in the head, how is there any doubt that the men who committed those acts were terrorists?

Now, look at the headline from the International Business Times.  That read, “Three Palestinians Shot Dead as US Vice President Joe Biden Arrives for Talks.”  That is an intentional attempt to elevate the Palestinian terrorists who were killed above the Israelis who were wounded.  In fact, that headline does not even mention the Israelis who were injured, or the American veteran who was killed.  Yes, three Palestinians were killed; two during their stabbing attacks, and another woman as she lunged at a soldier with a knife.  What about the actual victims of the attacks?  Where is their mention in that headline?  One can not lift up the Palestinian terrorists above their innocent victims who were attacked for being Jewish in the Jewish state.

One News Now, an international news service decided to run an equally biased headline, “Three Palestinians Shot Dead by Israeli Security Forces in Separate Incidents.”  Again, no mention of why those three terrorists were shot dead.  No mention of the 12 wounded and one killed. It is clear that these news sites have thrown away any shred of respectability in an attempt to instill their anti-Israel bias onto their readers.

Compare this reaction to the case of Tariq Khedir.  Khedir is an American-Palestinian teenager who was arrested by Israeli police while taking part in protests leading up to Operation Protective Edge.  In the summer of 2014, as Israel was frantically searching for the bodies of three kidnapped Israeli teenagers, protests broke out as Israeli forces conducted arrests during Operation Brother’s Keeper.  The three bodies of the Israeli teenagers, Naftali Frenkel, 16, Gilad Shaer, 16, and Eyal Yifrah, 19, of blessed memory, were eventually found, having been murdered by Hamas-linked terrorists.  Khedir, who was actively taking part in the riots was arrested and immediately outrage across the US was expressed.  So much outrage in fact, that President Obama personally intervened.  Not only was he released, but the Israeli extremists who murdered Khedir’s cousin were brought to justice within Israel, something that would never happen to terrorists in a Palestinian justice system.

What happened to Khedir was horrible, and no teenager should go through what he did.  However, Khedir was released.  He got to go home and hug his mother.  He was able to go fishing with his friends again.  He will grow up and father children.  Taylor Force and Ezra Schwartz will never get that chance.  Despite that, news services across the country and the world were outraged at the Israeli government over the arrest.  Outrage that they never direct at Palestinian terrorists who murder in cold blood.  President Obama and news outlets, both foreign and domestic, always save their harshest language for Israeli leaders. It is never directed at Palestinian leaders who harbor, incite, and pay the same Palestinian terrorists who murdered those three Israeli teenagers, these two Americans, and dozens of Israelis over the course of the “stabbing intifada.”

Yesterday was a day when many people and organizations showed their true colors.  Israelis like Yonatan Azrihav and Yishai Montgomery showed the lion-like spirit of Israel that has persevered through innumerable challenges.  On the other side of the spectrum, CNN, International Business Times, One News Now, and other news organizations showed the anti-Israel bias that is true to their core and runs rampant throughout the media.  President Obama again showed his cowardice and coldness in refusing to express and direct outrage against the Palestinian terrorists who cut down the life of an American hero.  Having survived tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan, Taylor Force was taken from the world by terrorists while pursuing his education in Israel.

In our information crazed world, news outlets have a disproportionate amount of influence over their readers, and when they display their anti-Israel bias so unashamedly it has a direct effect on the opinions of readers.  When the President of the United States, the leader of the free world, refuses to condemn the terrorists who killed an American Army veteran, it highlights his shortcomings as Commander in Chief.  That is only multiplied when the same Commander in Chief chose to so passionately insert himself into the case of a Palestinian-American teenager who was arrested and then released.  So, American news outlets, and most importantly, President Obama, I ask again, where is the outrage over the latest murder of an American by Palestinian terrorists?

About the Author
Saul Mangel, a writer based in Netanya, specializes in international relations, the defense industry, and the Arab-Israeli conflict. Originally from Philadelphia, Mr. Mangel holds a bachelor's degree in political science. While working at a leading intelligence firm in Israel, Mr. Mangel will continue to contribute to the Times of Israel.
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