Amira Hass, an influential columnist at the Israel daily Haaretz, has written an extremely disturbing piece advocating rock attacks against Israelis by Palestinians – calling it a "birthright and duty." She also recommends that "Palestinian schools introduce basic classes in resistance."
An Israeli organization is looking to sue Hass for incitement, especially as her words came on the eve of Holocaust Remembrance Day, and just hours after a court found a Palestinian man guilty of murder for throwing rocks at a car that overturned, killing an Israeli and his infant son.
Open Letter to Amira Hass
Adva Bitton – whose 3-year-old daughter, Adele, is in critical condition following a rock attack three weeks ago in the West Bank – wrote the following letter to Amira Hass, published on the Hebrew news site NRG.
Amira, come to the intensive care unit, and see my Adele, a 3-year-old girl, attached to tubes. Experience with me the difficult trial with which I am coping. Amira, a rock does not distinguish between blood and blood, or between an adult and a 3-year-old girl. A rock kills. A rock is a deadly weapon in every way. Three weeks ago, I experienced on my own flesh how a single rock has caused the life of an entire family to be turned upside down.
I believe in the value of life. Life is the most sacred thing, irrespective of race, religion, or gender. Today, having spent three weeks in an ICU, I am surrounded only by people who are fighting for life and helping one another.
The Arab paramedic who reached our car did not utter words like yours – that kill.
The paramedic who first reached our car, who saw us crushed under the truck, is a young Arab man. He came and started his sacred work. He did not utter lofty, hollow words like yours, words that kill. He simply saved lives.
I agree with you, Amira, that everyone is entitled to his or her freedom. Arab and Jew. I agree with you that we must all strive for liberty, but there is no one in the world who will achieve freedom and liberty by deadly weapons. There is no reason in the world that Adele, my 3-year-old daughter, should be lying in an ICU, attached to tubes and fighting for her life, and there is no reason, Amira, that you should encourage it. Why must my Adele pay this price? Has she had a chance to cause anyone harm in the three years she has been alive?
I invite you, Amira: Come to the ICU, and experience with me the difficult trial with which I am coping. But I don't really recommend that you put yourself in my place, hearing the screams of your daughters from within the smashed car, remaining in full consciousness and experiencing your own helplessness, your inability to move and help them. Seeing your 3-year-old daughter fighting for her life, without the ability to influence her condition.
I work as a lecturer. I have quite a few Arab students whom I teach, and during this difficult time they have been coming to the hospital every day. They say, "We are praying for Adele," and it doesn't matter to me if the prayer is in Arabic or in Hebrew. Their prayer is comprised of words, as well, but words that come from the heart and are capable of prolonging life. Your words, Amira, are horrific words of incitement. Words that encourage the cutting off of life.
Thanks to Avi Mayer for the translation.