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January 4, 2023 11:46 am
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PA Campaign: 40,000 Students’ Letters Honor Terrorist Murderer Upon Release After 40 Years in Prison

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avatar by Itamar Marcus

Opinion

Palestinian Authority (PA) President Mahmoud Abbas takes part in a virtual meeting with Palestinian faction heads, in the West Bank city of Ramallah, Sept. 3, 2020. Photo: Alaa Badarneh / Pool via Reuters.

The Palestinian Authority (PA)’s preparations for the upcoming release of terrorist murderer Karim Younes from Israeli prison on January 5 expose several fundamental aspects of PA ideology.

The PA Ministry of Education is coordinating the writing of 40,000 letters from students, corresponding to the 40 years that Younes was in prison, to welcome the terrorist the day he is released from prison.

For the PA, Karim Younes is no ordinary terrorist. but a symbol of everything the PA is trying to promote and a means to recruit the Arabs youth behind an integrated narrative. For this reason, January 5, 2023, will be a day of great celebration for the Palestinian leadership.

Karim Younes was born in 1957 in the Israeli-Arab city of Ara, and holds Israeli citizenship. On Nov. 26, 1980, Younes and his cousin Maher Younes, acting on the instructions of another relative, Sami Younes, attacked and murdered Israeli soldier Avraham Bromberg, who was going home on leave.

The three terrorists were arrested in January 1983, tried and convicted for murder, and sentenced to death. On appeal, their sentences were reduced to life in prison.

In 2011, Sami Younes was released from prison as part of the deal to free Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit, who had been held captive by Hamas since 2006. In 2012, Israeli President Shimon Peres decided to commute the sentences of Karim Younes and Maher Younes to 40 years in prison each, apparently as a goodwill gesture to the PA.

Karim Younes is the Palestinian terrorist who has spent the most consecutive time in Israeli prison.

  • PA ideology I: Murdering Israelis is “nothing wrong”; makes a mother proud

As Palestinian Media Watch (PMW) has repeatedly noted, for the PA, there is no such thing as an “Israeli-Arab.” According to PA ideology, they are “Palestinians of the interior,” meaning that they don’t recognize Israel — it is the “interior of Palestine.” To incentivize the Palestinians of “the interior” to participate in terror, the PA terror reward Pay-for-Slay policy includes an additional monthly payment for terrorists who hold Israeli citizenship.

Highlighting the PA idolization of murderers of Israelis, speaking on behalf of PA leader Mahmoud Abbas, Fatah Deputy Chairman Mahmoud Al-Aloul called the Younes terrorist “a national example of the resolve against the Israeli occupation” and “one of the symbols of the Palestinian struggle”:

The participants in the event, which the [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs held yesterday in cooperation with the Ramallah and El-Bireh District and the [PA-funded] Prisoners’ Club, renewed the oath and loyalty to prisoners Karim and Maher Younes for the beginning of their 36th year in the occupation’s prisons.

Fatah Movement Central Committee member and Fatah Deputy Chairman Mahmoud Al-Aloul said in a speech on behalf of [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas that prisoners Karim and Maher Younes constitute a national example of the resolve of the members of our people against the Israeli occupation.

He also added that the Younes prisoners constitute one of the symbols of the Palestinian struggle, they and the thousands of prisoners who have paid and are still paying a heavy price for the freedom of their people. [emphasis added]

[Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Jan. 15, 2018]

When Karim Younes’ mother died, Abbas posthumously awarded her the “Star of Freedom.” Younes’ mother was apparently deserving of the medal because she believes that neither he nor any of the other terrorist murderers did anything wrong:

Terrorist Karim Younes’ mother: “He [Karim Younes] is the one that strengthens my endurance: ’Mom, I didn’t do [wrong] –I didn’t steal. I didn’t harass a woman. I did nothing for you to be ashamed of. On the contrary, mom.’ He always encourages me…

I told him: ’Don’t worry … You did nothing wrong.’  … [To all his fellow prisoners I say:] ’Don’t despair and don’t worry. You did nothing wrong that harms your families or [causes] them to be ashamed of your actions. On the contrary, you bring us pride.’”

Official PA TV reporter: “By becoming a symbol of adherence to the [Palestinian] cause and the land, he has turned into a source of pride for his town ‘Ara within the Green Line, and to all of Palestine.”

[Official PA TV News, Jan. 6, 2019]

  • PA ideology II: Terrorist prisoners are heroes who must be honored

As PMW has extensively proven, in the eyes of the PA, Palestinian terrorists who murder Israelis are heroes. This principle is being stressed in a campaign launched by the PA Ministry of Education in which students are writing 40,000 letters of appreciation, specifically addressing Karim Younes but also all the “heroic prisoners”:

Students’ voices: “For us, Allah willing [soon to be] released prisoner [Karim Younes] (i.e., terrorist, murdered 1) is a role model of firmness, defiance, and achieving freedom. [He is] the hero of the cause, the most veteran prisoner of Ribat (i.e., religious conflict), a shining star in the occupation’s prisons. I send you my greetings, our heroic prisoners, full of the spirit of the great Martyrs, the sunset, and the height of darkness. Karim Younes, we are with you, the entire Palestinian people is with you.The time has come after 40 years, Allah willing your release will come. We are all with you. You are a man who sacrificed the best years of his youth for his homeland, for the people of Palestine.” [emphasis added]

[PA Minstry of Education, Facebook page, Dec. 15, 2022]

As an expression of high regard for Karim Younes, Fatah, at the behest of Abbas, decided to honor him by electing Younes to its Central Committee:

[PA] Minister of Justice Ali Abu Diyak emphasized that the decision of the Fatah Movement leadership — led by President Mahmoud Abbas — to appoint the veteran prisoner Karim Younes to the Fatah Central Committee is the clearest and severest response to the campaign being led by Israel to accuse the prisoners, Martyrs (Shahids), and the Palestinian struggle of terror.

[Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, May 28, 2017]

Issa Karake, then the PLO’s Director of Prisoners’ Affairs, welcomed the appointment, claiming that it constituted a statement that the Palestinian prisoners “are not terrorists and not criminals” but “freedom prisoners and fighters”:

Director of PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake: “I want to note an additional achievement, which was a political response by the Palestinian leadership when the Fatah Revolutionary Council made a decision to appoint prisoner Karim Younes, the most veteran of the prisoners, as a member of the Fatah Movement Central Committee. I think that this is a very great and significant political response, [which says] that our prisoners are not terrorists and are not criminals. They are freedom prisoners and fighters who enjoy an important national, human, and legal status among their leadership and among their Palestinian people.”

[Official PA TV, “Palestine This Morning,” May 28, 2017]

Speaking specifically about Karim and Maher Younes, the Fatah Movement Revolutionary Council “noted with praise the honor inspiring history of struggle” and declared them “a symbol of human freedom and honor”:

The Fatah Movement Revolutionary Council noted with praise the honor inspiring history of struggle and the legendary resolve of prisoners Karim and Maher Younes, 39 years after their imprisonment…

The Revolutionary Council noted in a press release yesterday, Wednesday [Jan. 6, 2021] … that the two prisoners have become a symbol of human freedom and honor.

[Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Jan. 7, 2021]

  • PA ideology III: The EU-funded Ministry of Education’s goal is to teach children to glorify terrorists

Building on the two previous ideological blocks, the PA then adds the crowning element: Using the European-funded PA educational system to brainwash Palestinian children into admiring all terrorist murderers.

In anticipation of the release of Karim Younes, as part of the “values” and “principles” of the PA, the PA Ministry of Education launched the special campaign mentioned above, in which children write letters of praise to “leader” Karim Younes:

Official PA TV host: “When we speak about the Palestinian teacher, we speak about building the people’s education, and building social thinking… Tell us the details of the campaign of 40,000 letters to prisoner leader Karim Younes?”

PA Ministry of Education Spokesman Sadeq Al-Khadour: “Letters will be [written] until reaching 40,000 letters, which Allah willing will be given to released prisoner Karim Younes immediately upon his release. We in the Ministry of Education are proud that our Palestinian teachers, when we chose this day, the teachers are continuing with values and lead the students to peaks … Karim Younes deserves all of this loyalty from us and from our educational family.”

[Official PA TV, Palestine This Morning, Dec. 14, 2022]

Announcing the launch of the campaign, the Bethlehem High School for Girls said it sends a “message of love, gratitude, and appreciation” to Karim Younes:

The Bethlehem High School for Girls, in partnership with the Palestinian [PA-funded] Prisoners’ Club, the [PLO] Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs, the Association of Released Prisoners, and the [PA] Ministry of Education, launched [a campaign of] 40,000 letters to the most veteran prisoner Karim Younes  as a message of love, gratitude, and appreciation for his resolve inside the occupation’s prisons…

[PNN, independent Palestinian news agency, Dec. 16, 2022]

Director-General Abdallah Zaghari of the PA-funded Palestinian Prisoners’ Club added:

The letters that the young students of Palestine will write are messages of love for the homeland and appreciation for the prisoners and Martyrs.

[PNN, independent Palestinian news agency, Dec. 16, 2022]

Itamar Marcus is the Founder and Director of Palestinian Media Watch, where a version of this article first appeared.

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