Two years ago, I wrote a column on "Arafat's Suicide Factory," pointing out that it's not easy getting well-adjusted kids to want to give up their lives; this requires an intelligent and far-reaching assault on their senses.
The process begins with the Palestinian Authority (PA) inculcating two things into its population, starting with the children: a hatred of Jews and a love of death. School curricula, camp activities, TV programming and religious indoctrination all portray Israelis in a Nazi-style way, as sub-human being worthy of killing; and then deprecate the instinct for self-preservation, telling impressionable young people that sacrificing their lives is the most noble of all goals.
Today's Times (London) reports on a clever new way of engrossing young boys. The Intifada Album is a "craze sweeping the school playgrounds of Nablus and taking the West Bank by storm." It consists of paper cards with various scenes from the three-plus years of violence. Young boys hurl stones. Keffiyeh-clad terrorists preen. Bodies of "martyrs" are carried aloft through the streets in funeral processions.
On the market just two months, 6 million cards have been sold, along with 35,000 albums, each with space for 229 pictures. "Virtually every teenager in Nablus and Ramallah can produce a wad of stickers from his pocket." One 15-year-old boy comments, "When I see these pictures I get very emotional. It makes me want to resist the occupation."
With such emotions brewing, the cards not surprisingly enjoy the blessing of Mahmoud Aloul, the Palestinian Authority's man in Nablus, who praises them for helping people "know the many sacrifices that others have given for this land on which their blessed blood was spilt."
And thus does the wretched PA spoil the childhood of its youth and prepare them for early death. (January 24, 2004)