March 25, 2004


Palestinian terrorists send a teenager to die -- and Israeli soldiers save his life:

A 16-year-old Palestinian youth with a suicide bomb vest strapped to his body was caught at a crowded West Bank checkpoint today.

Soldiers, taking cover behind concrete barriers, sent a yellow army robot to bring scissors to the teenager so he could cut off the vest and then made him strip to his underwear to ensure he was unarmed before detaining him.

The incident began about 4pm when soldiers at the Hawara checkpoint outside Nablus received intelligence a bomber was in the checkpoint. They immediately shut down the crossing and began searching the hundreds of people gathered there, the military said.

"We saw that he had something under his shirt," said Lt Tamir Milrad.

"He told us he didn't want to die. He didn't want to blow up," Milrad said.

The kidís brother told reporters: "He doesn't know anything, and he has the intelligence of a 12-year-old." Really? Compared to his explodey elders, heís a genius.

Posted by Tim Blair at March 25, 2004 11:35 AM

Those damn JOOOOOOOOsss taking away this kids chance to see paradise as a matyr. The grand Zionist Neocon conspiracy strikes again

Posted by: Todd at March 25, 2004 at 11:37 AM

Damn those Palestinian terrorists to hell! No, wait, they are already well on their way. All right then, bon voyage you murderous pig munching pukes!

Let's hear it for the IDF!

Posted by: JeffS at March 25, 2004 at 11:42 AM

Um... for a 16-year-old to have the intelligence of a 12-year-old isn't THAT dumb.

It's kind of a weird description if you think about it. Sort of like saying Howard Dean, he may be from Vermont, but he thinks like someone from Delaware. Uh, yeah!

By the way, be sure to go to LGF or somewhere and see the picture of the poor kid waiting for the robot to undress him in public and hoping he doesn't blow up first. Really pathetic, I think in some ways it's more damning of the Palestinian terror leadership than the usual bloody stuff.

Posted by: Mike G at March 25, 2004 at 11:42 AM

Poor kid. I watched the thing on TV. They should send him around the world to talk about his experiences. First stop France and Germany.

But the people who put him up to it. God, no punishment is too harsh for them.

Sick, sick, sick...

Posted by: aussie at March 25, 2004 at 11:47 AM

I hear the UN Human Rights Commission is scrambling to organise a meeting to condemn this...

Posted by: Monco at March 25, 2004 at 11:50 AM

I am increasingly concerned by this situation...

Posted by: Kofee Annan at March 25, 2004 at 11:55 AM

really Monco, I also heard the UN is about to pass their first resolution condemning palestinian suicide bombings..

oh wait, silly me, they are trying to condemn ISRAEL for the 100th time because they took out Yassin, one of the inventors of the suicide bombing.

As far as I'm concerned, if the UN oppose it, I support it.

So Kofi, hows the investigation into the UN corruption over the food for oil scandal going ?

Posted by: Jono at March 25, 2004 at 11:58 AM

It speaks for itself:

Terrorists send mentally retarded boy as suicide bomber.

What honourable men did this - I hope they are amply rewarded.

Posted by: Rob at March 25, 2004 at 12:02 PM

Reminds me of a bumper sticker idea I read somewhere else: "Save the Palestinian children - Kill their parents!"

Posted by: Richard Clarke at March 25, 2004 at 12:12 PM

Shocking! The IDF degraded this poor child by making him strip in public. Don't they realise that humiliation and failure fosters terrorism.

Posted by: eefok at March 25, 2004 at 12:34 PM

How nice is his brother, Hosni? His main criticism was that they chose the wrong guy for the mission because his brother will tell the Israelis who sent him.

The general idea of such operations is that there is little left to tell anyone anything.

Can't wait for Rantisi to become the martyr he wants to be when organises and supports these sorts of atrocities.

Posted by: amortiser at March 25, 2004 at 12:43 PM

This is great news for the Israelis. It shows the world once again how manipulative the Palestinians can be, plus shows how desperate they are in order to want to send someone like this to be a bomber. As an added bonus, no one had to die today because of this.

Posted by: david at March 25, 2004 at 12:53 PM

They are reduced to recruiting retarded boys as their walking bombs. Is this a sign, maybe, that Palestinians are finally waking up to the futility of this tactic? (It may be a bit too much to hope that they are finally seeing it for the murderous cruelty that it is)

Posted by: Rebecca at March 25, 2004 at 12:58 PM

Putting my tinfoil hat on for a second, I wouldn't be surprised if this kid had been set up by someone on the Israeli side. The apparent situation (Hamas or other groups running out of willing matyrs, forcing kids into suicide bombing) produces a very favourable headline.

Certainly, if I was running a military operation involving covert operations et al, I'd have done this already.

That said, I wouldn't be surprised if the story (as reported) was wholly true.

I don't conclude either way. Things are pretty f*cked up on all sides in that region.

Posted by: Tiu Fu Fong at March 25, 2004 at 01:01 PM

FYI, Channel 7 reported that he's fourteen. That seems to be the right age -- the Israeli army tried to claim he was ten, while Al Aqsa tried to claim he was sixteen.

Posted by: Robert at March 25, 2004 at 01:04 PM

From the link: "A spokesman for the al Aqsa Martyrs Brigade - the militant faction linked to Yasser Arafat's Fatah - also insisted the boy was 16."

Well, that answers my doubts for me. Wow, how stupid can you be? Life must be easy for Mossad and other Israeli covert agencies when Al Aqsa can be left to create its own PR disasters.

Posted by: Tiu Fu Fong at March 25, 2004 at 01:11 PM

I have to admire those brave, heroic men who strapped a bomb to that child and sent him out, in their place, to be a magnificent martyr for their cause so, the hell I do.

They have to be the lowest form of life on the planet. Calling them slime would be an insult to slime everywhere. They deserve a unimaginably slow and painful death, right before they rot in hell for eternity!

Sorry, I'm really a nice guy, but that just pisses me off!

Posted by: rinardman at March 25, 2004 at 01:19 PM

It's good to see Palentinian yoof make something of their lives. And who says 16-year-olds shouldn't vote.

Posted by: Mike Hunt at March 25, 2004 at 01:39 PM

So far I have heard that he is 11, 12, 14, and 16.

Nice to see that The Age went with the age that al-Aqsa's claimed he was

Posted by: Dead Ed at March 25, 2004 at 01:43 PM

But I thought Yassir's death meant that hundreds of willing and able-minded young jihadis would be flocking to Hamas? Why do they need to turn to women and children?

Posted by: Sortelli Divide at March 25, 2004 at 01:48 PM

Hey, maybe this will encourage the morons on the Left to see how bankrupt the arabs of Palestine cause really is... Ah, no. Nope, I'm a wanker.

Posted by: JR at March 25, 2004 at 01:49 PM

Whoops! I forgot to take off the Divide family mask.

Posted by: Sortelli at March 25, 2004 at 01:49 PM

They're breeding baby 'splodeys even as we speak/blog:

MARK WILLACY: In Jabir Yassin's home in Gaza City, the family is celebrating a new arrival. Since his family name was already Yassin, Jabir has decided to name his new son Ahmed. Ahmed was born only a few hours after his namesake was assassinated just down the road.

"What I wish for my child is for him to live in peace like other children around the world", says Jabir while holding baby Ahmed in his arms.

"But I also wish for him to continue to struggle to liberate our land and our freedom, so if he decides to become a martyr for the sake of liberation and regaining our freedom then I will be very proud of him," Jabir says.

I'd call that baptism by the devil.

Posted by: ilibcc at March 25, 2004 at 02:05 PM

Dead Ed:
Nice to see that The Age went with the age that al-Aqsa's claimed he was

Heh I noticed that too.. Wherever you can, spin the issue to whitewash the palestinians.

The whole murderous death cult society that praises suicide bombers, oppresses women and executes homosexuals is just a little distraction compared to those few and tiny scattered Jewish settlements throughout the disputed territories.

Even a small mobile home is reported as a Jewish settlement in "occupied Palestinian land" by the media.

Posted by: Jono at March 25, 2004 at 02:28 PM

I guess the poor little bastard had seen these pictures of what he would turn out like.

Posted by: Todd at March 25, 2004 at 02:49 PM

"Nice to see that The Age went with the age that al-Aqsa's claimed he was"

Actually, The Age took the report from Associated Press, so blame them.

Posted by: Robert at March 25, 2004 at 02:57 PM

Maybe he hadn't read the obituaries.

David Hirst
Tuesday March 23, 2004
The Guardian

When, in October 1997, the halfblind, almost wholly paralysed Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, who has been killed in an Israeli air strike at the age of around 67, arrived in Gaza, after being released from an Israeli jail in exchange for Mossad agents caught redhanded trying to assassinate a colleague in Jordan, one Arab commentator likened him to Nelson Mandela.

The comparison must have made Yasser Arafat seethe inwardly, even as he heaped homage on the returning hero. In his view, if there were any Palestinian Mandela - any unique, historic leader of the Palestinian people - it was himself.

In truth, neither Arafat nor Yassin had Mandela's special greatness. But of the two, it was Yassin, the founder-leader of the militant Islamist organisation Hamas, who came closer. The reason was not to be found in his beliefs - which, in their narrow, obscurantist, religious frame, were far removed from the South African's lofty humanism and compassion - but in the facts of his career, and the part that certain, very personal, qualities - of selflessness, simplicity, conviction and a true sense of service - played in bringing it to fruition.

Yassin had personal glory largely thrust upon him. He was in his late 50s, and a very sick man, before he became a really potent force on the Middle East stage; and, as a prisoner in enemy Israeli jails, he had little practical to do with the devastating suicide bombings, from which, more than anything else, he derived that force.

Indeed, for most of his career, as a local leader of the international Muslim Brotherhood, Yassin shared its deep-rooted, strategically motivated opposition to direct, violent action against the Zionist foe, let alone of such an extreme and atrocious kind. He was more devoted to the revival of Islam than to the salvation of Palestine, deeming that the second goal could only be pursued after the completion of the first.

There had actually been a time when, on account of his quietism, the ideological challenge he posed to militant secular nationalism, and his opposition to the armed struggle espoused by the Palestine Liberation Organisation, the Israelis looked benevolently on Yassin and his works.

The PLO nationalists even branded him a collaborator.

Yassin was born into a relatively well-to-do, middleclass farming family from the village of Tor, in southern Palestine. When, in 1948, the state of Israel arose on the debris of the Palestinian community, the shock of exile, and the misery of the al-Shati' refugee camp in Gaza, which became his new home, were critical in the formation of his sense of mission and his religious convictions.

Subsequent physical disability doubtless further strengthened them. As a 12-year-old, he suffered irreparable damage to his spinal column during a football game; at first, he could manage with crutches, but later, inert in arms and legs, he was confined to a wheelchair. After finishing his schooling, Yassin became a teacher until, in 1964, he enrolled in the English department of Ain Shams University, Cairo. There, he proved more interested in radical interpretations of the Koran than Shakespeare. He associated with the founding, Egyptian branch of the Muslim Brotherhood. But with President Nasser and secular nationalist ideologies then at their apogee, the brotherhood was suffering persecution and political eclipse. Thanks to that, and lack of money, Yassin had to return to Gaza, where he continued teaching until, in 1984, his disability forced him into early retirement.

Meanwhile, in the shadow of his formal career, he was laying the foundations of his future eminence as both a religious and political seer. He founded al-Mujamma' al-Islami, the Islamic Centre, which soon came to control virtually all religious organisations - including the Islamic University - in Gaza.

He preached the standard Islamist view that Israel, by its very existence, was an affront to Islam, and that Palestine was the "property of Muslims till the day of judgment" that no ruler had the right to give up.

But while it was the duty of Muslims to wage a jihad to liberate Palestine in its entirety, that time was not yet. For the foreseeable future, Yassin believed, the struggle was cultural, moral and educational; it was about combating secularism and the reform and re-Islamicisation of Palestinian society - a preparation for jihad, rather than jihad itself. All this was so reassuring to the Israelis that, in 1979, they granted the Gaza centre an official licence.

Throughout the 1970s and 80s, Arafat's PLO suffered setback after setback; its reputation as a corrupt, opportunist, self-serving bureaucracy grew and grew. In contrast, political Islam was presenting itself everywhere as a new, clean, dynamic force for political and social change. In Palestine, it naturally took on an additional dimension - the harnessing of religion, as an ideology and a frame for action, to the national struggle.

It was an extremist splinter group of the Muslim Brotherhood, Islamic Jihad, which, in the early 1980s, first embarked on armed struggle in the name of Islam - and achieved instant popularity among the Palestinians for doing so.

The challenge to the traditional gradualism of the mainstream brotherhood could not be ignored. Perhaps Yassin was already contemplating a similar revolutionary step. At any rate, in 1984 the Israelis discovered an arms cache in the mosque he had built in the Jaurat slum where he now lived. He was sentenced to 15 years in prison. Upon his release a year later, as part of an exchange of Palestinian prisoners for Israeli soldiers held in Lebanon, he did not take that step, remaining faithful to the traditional brotherhood strategy of preaching and social work, rather than direct action against the Israeli enemy.

It took the first intifada (the largely unarmed, six-year uprising that preceded the current, far more violent one) to transform Yassin wholly and irrevocably, and to pitchfork him into the forefront of the Palestinian struggle as a serious rival to Arafat himself.

That spontaneous eruption surprised him as much as it did everyone else. When it began, in December 1987, he was already the most prominent religious figure in Gaza, perhaps even Palestine as a whole. But he was not Iran's Ayatollah Khomeini, no great prophet or original thinker.

The reasons for his sudden emergence as a real power in the land were essentially political. On the one hand, a relative quietist still, Yassin did not want to throw the Muslim Brotherhood wholeheartedly into the new struggle, endangering everything he and his associates had constructed with such exertions and sacrifice.

At the same time, he knew that Palestinian society was clamouring for serious action against the Israeli occupiers, and that, with an organisation already in being - and the PLO increasingly discredited - the Islamists were ideally placed to seize the leadership of it.

It was Yassin's idea to establish an ostensibly separate body called Hamas, or Zeal, that would divert attention from the brotherhood. Such was its impact, however, that it soon completely submerged the mother body from which it had stemmed.

Yassin justified the change of strategy by saying that new realities - a product of the "divine will" - had imposed the need for a new, activist form of jihad. He also offered more than the PLO ever could: a special kind of struggle that combined moral purity and social action with the promise of divine grace - not just redemption of the homeland, but salvation of the troubled soul as well.

Before long, Hamas was outdoing, in violent deeds, all the secular nationalist groups that had formerly mocked the Islamists for their inaction. In 1989, it took Yassin back to an Israeli prison, this time with a life sentence for his alleged involvement in the abduction and murder of an Israeli soldier.

Like a Mandela - unseen, unheard, yet charismatic in his prison cell - now half blind and deaf as well as crippled, Yassin's prestige grew inexorably, just as that of Arafat, the official Mr Palestine, an ever-greater travesty of all that Mandela ever stood for, withered beneath the glare of a publicity he could no longer escape.

But it was the self-sacrificing zeal of Yassin's followers that achieved this for him. It was only after the massacre of 30 worshipppers in a Hebron mosque, by a suicidal Israeli settler in February 1994, that the Hamas suicide bombers really got going.

Whether or not Yassin, who was still in jail at the time, really willed it, they became what, with the coming of the second intifada, they remain to this day, the ultimate expression of Islamist violence, terrifying the Israelis, undermining Arafat, and, in symbiotic connivance with their extremist counterparts on the other side, pushing the whole Arab-Israeli struggle towards the dark extremities of the inter-communal fanaticism from which Mandela rescued South Africa.

Yassin is survived by his wife Halima and their 11 children.

∑ Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, Hamas leader, born c1936; died March 22 2004

Posted by: fred at March 25, 2004 at 03:16 PM

Todd (white male, tax paying oppressor)

Wow what a shattering experience for the bombers. I must say it left me cold. So what! As well as destroying the bombers homes they should fine their families for littering and leaving such crap lying around the place.

To think that far back in the distant reaches of time I actauly had some sympathy for the Palestinians. Then they started pulling this shit and lost me. Now they send kids and have totaly gone off the scale of my "Could'nt give a fuck meter". Go IDF.

Posted by: Dog at March 25, 2004 at 04:09 PM

paralysed in a football accident?? That must have been soccer - how do you sustain an injury in soccer that would paralyse you?

The truth is being hidden becasue it is too hilarious. The might 'spritual leader' of a terrorist organisation was paralysed in an *acrobatics* accident. I am not making this up - scroll down here for the think.

Posted by: attila at March 25, 2004 at 04:49 PM

Two state solution my arse. As far as I'm concerned the Palestinians have forfeited all rights to have a state ANYWHERE ,except possibly Antarctica, let alone on Israels land.

Posted by: Pissed Off at March 25, 2004 at 05:21 PM

After Abdallah Quran, this is at least the second time an unwilling suicide bomber has been sent at Israel.

Does this mean Hamas is running out of willing suicide bombers?

If so, its a milestone achievement for the war on terror, and it proves the "supply" of terrorists is not limitless.

Posted by: wv at March 25, 2004 at 06:08 PM

ABC just provided a nice balanced report.

That's if you are a member of HAMAS.

Fucking TV is still leaking sneers.

Posted by: fred at March 25, 2004 at 07:17 PM

The 10-year-old boy (or possibly 11) was in an earlier incident. Apparently, he was tricked into carrying a bomb through a checkpoint for delivery to someone on the other side. He was released by the Israelis, who said he didn't know he was carrying a bomb.

Posted by: Joanne Jacobs at March 25, 2004 at 08:12 PM

A question for the Pali supporting trolls - If the Israelis are so evil, why the fuck didn't they just shoot the kid and then detonate the bomb? -they had every right to.

(Pissed Off - please don't put any ideas into the Pali's heads about Antartica - I quite like the place as it is.)

Do we get to watch the kids house getting bulldozed? Would any of Rachel Corrie's mates be prepared to attend and re-enact her heroic demise. Now that would be good reality TV.

(I feel a bit intimidated posting after Joanne Jacobs because I'd expect she'll be criticising the hell out of my spelling and grammar. I really like her blog!)

Posted by: Razor at March 25, 2004 at 09:54 PM

I am not sure whether to feel sorry for the kid or not. He may well know what he was doing and the Palis are spinning him as a retard, because he failed. Obviously a clever Pali boy would have snuck through and kiledl himself like a good young martyr.

Posted by: Andrew Ian Dodge at March 26, 2004 at 01:45 AM

Please note that:

Polluting Antarctica with garbage (like Palis) is in contravention of several UN resolutions. It seems that you Mr Pissed Off are a Bush Cronie and if you persist in this propsal we will get the UN to take forceful action like holding several international conferences on this issue and generating dozens of long winded resolutions, which will cause your brains to dissolve and turn to mush.

Posted by: Greenpeace at March 26, 2004 at 05:05 AM

Two state solution my arse. As far as I'm concerned the Palestinians have forfeited all rights to have a state ANYWHERE ,except possibly Antarctica, let alone on Israels land.

The Palestinians have a state already - its called Jordan.


Posted by: Jono at March 26, 2004 at 10:31 AM