Assassinations and Terrorism: The Double Standard in Israel and the
  Western Media.

  By Ray Hanania
  February 14, 2001

 
  Massoud Ayyad, 54, was killed when a missile fired by an Israeli
  gunship  struck the car he was driving in, tearing it to pieces in a
  ball of fire.  Ayyad was not attacking anyone, only driving down a Gaza
  Strop road near  the Jabaliyya Refugee Camp.
 
   Newspaper articles in the United States touted the Israeli line that
  Ayyad was a "militant" responsible for attacks against Israel. No
  proof. No facts. Just accusations.
 
   Instead of being described as an act of murder, the assassination was
  brushed off as being justified. Another incident of the reality of the
  fighting between the Palestinians and the Israelis.
 
  The stories described Ayyad as being 54, and a member of the elite
  Force 17, a Palestinian military unit that some might compare to the
  Shin Bet,  the Israeli secret service. There were no interviews with
  his family. No description of whether he had children or not, and their
  names. Nothing  that presented Ayyad as a human being. Just another
  Palestinian statistic  in the growing list of Palestinians who have
  been murdered by the Israelis.
 
  In comparison, a Palestinian bus driver who shuttled Palestinians to
  and from work, drove his bus into a crowd of Israeli soldiers and
  paramilitary Israeli civilian units. Seven soldiers were killed and
  one "civilian" who carried an Uzi was also killed.
 
  The incident was described in the same newspapers in the United States
  as "the worst incident of terrorism since December 2000." The
  word "terrorism" and "terrorist" was repeated throughout the articles.
 
  Reporters on radio, TV and in newspapers interviewed the relatives of
  the victims who denounced the Arabs and said the "act of terrorism"
  only offered proof that the Arab Palestinians were vicious and should
  be sealed in their homes. One Israeli was quoted as asking, in tears,
  of course, "How are we expected to give them peace when they kill us
  like this?" The woman was weeping.
 
  The Israelis asserted that the driver was a member of Hamas, the
  militant Islamic political organization. And Israel announced further
  crackdowns on the besieged Palestinians, who are already suffering from
  a lack of work, food and medical supplies.
 
  The next day, a public radio reporter interviewed the wife of the bus
  driver who denied that her husband was a member of Hamas. Instead, she
  said, that he was distraught by the daily images of Palestinians being
  gunned down by the Israeli soldiers and armed settler fanatics.
  Everyday, she said, her husband witnessed young children ripped apart
  by bullets.
 
  Murdered. Killed. He was anguished over the way the Palestinians were
  being treated by the Israeli occupation.
 
  It was one of the only reports to provide the truth about the incident.
 
  One was an act of assassination, sanctions by Israeli morality. The
  other an act of terrorism used to further the anti-Arab hysteria in the
  United States and throughout the West, and to justify Israel's
  continued killing of civilian Palestinians.
 
  It's the daily double standard that is Israel. It's acceptable to
  murder a Palestinian in cold blood, but an outrage when a man brought
  to the edge of sanity by Israeli cruelty and a brutal military
  occupation takes an unfortunate, spontaneous and unplanned move.
 
  One is cold and calculated, the other is driven by pressures that no
  human being can withstand.
 
  The name "Israel" today stands as the equivalent of the words "hatred,
  murder, genocide and ugliness."
 
   Ironically, today's "Israelis" thrive in this society of ugliness and
  cruelty. But it is their ancestors, the survivors of the Nazi holocaust
  who can best relate to the Palestinian suffering today.
 
  The media continues this charade of inaccurate and incomplete
  reporting, downplaying the suffering of the Palestinians and
  exaggerating their justified rebellion. But the moral sanction of
  justice and righteousness rests on the side of the Palestinians. No
  matter how much the media and the Israelis distort the truth, they
  cannot take that away.