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April 21, 2014

Andrew Silow-Carroll: Passoverkill? Suggestions to make next year's seders even more culturally sensitive

Sara Israelsen Hartley: Seeking the Divine: An ancient connection in a new context

Christine M. Flowers: Priest's execution in Syria should be call to action

Courtnie Erickson: How to help kids accept the poor decisions of others

Lizette Borreli: A Glass Of Milk A Day Keeps Knee Arthritis At Bay

Lizette Borreli: 5 Health Conditions Your Breath Knows Before You Do

The Kosher Gourmet by Betty Rosbottom Coconut Walnut Bars' golden brown morsels are a beautifully balanced delectable delight

April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review May 24, 2004 / 4 Sivan, 5764

Does oppression cause homicide bombings?

By Alan Dershowitz


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Dispelling one of the most-repeated myths with hard, cold facts


http://www.jewishworldreview.com | As suicide bombings increase in Iraq, in Saudi Arabia, and in Israel, more and more people have come to believe that this tactic is a result of desperation. They see a direct link between oppression, occupation, poverty, and humiliation on the one hand, and a willingness to blow oneself up for the cause on the other hand. It follows from this premise that the obvious remedy for suicide bombing is to address its root cause — namely, our oppression of the terrorists.


But the underlying premise is demonstrably false: There is no such link as a matter of fact or history. Suicide bombing is a tactic that is selected by privileged, educated, and wealthy elitists because it has proven successful.


Moreover, even some of the suicide bombers themselves defy the stereotype of the impoverished victims of occupation driven to desperate measures by American or Israeli oppression. Remember the 9/11 bombers, several of whom were university students and none of whom were oppressed by the US. They were dispatched by a Saudi millionaire named Osama bin Laden.

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Bin Laden has now become the hero of many other upper-class Saudis who are volunteering to become shahids (martyrs) in Iraq, Israel, and other parts of the globe.


Majid al-Enezi, a Saudi student training to become a computer technician, recently changed career plans and decided to become a martyr; he crossed over into Iraq, where he died. His brother Abdullah celebrated that decision. "People are calling all the time to congratulate us, crying from happiness and envy. There are many young men who wish they could cross over into Iraq, but they can't. Thank G-d he was able to."


These rich kids glorify the culture of suicide, even in distant places. As Tufful al-Oqbi, a student at the elite King Saud University, described this situation, young people are wearing T-shirts with bin Laden's picture on them just the way people used to wear pictures of Che Guevara, the Cuban revolutionary. According to a recent news account, wealthy women students sport Osama bin Laden T-shirts under their enveloping abayas to show their approval for his calls to resist the United States.


Why do these overprivileged and well-educated young men and women support this culture of death, while impoverished and oppressed Tibetans continue to celebrate life despite their occupation by China for half a century?

Why have other oppressed people throughout history not resorted to suicide bombings and terrorism? The answer lies in differences among the elite leadership of various groups and causes. The leaders of Islamic radical causes, especially the Wahhabis, advocate and incite suicide terrorism, while the leaders of other causes advocate different means.


Recall Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King, Jr., whose people were truly oppressed but who advocated non-violent means of resistance. It is the leaders who send suicide bombers to blow themselves up. No suicide bomber ever sent himself to be blown up.


The bombers accept death because they have been incited into a frenzy of hatred by imams preaching "Kill the infidels." Sheikh Muhammad Sayed Tantawi, the leading Islamic scholar at the elite Al-Azhar University in Cairo (which is not occupied), has declared that martyrdom operations — which means suicide bombings — are the highest form of jihad and an Islamic commandment.


Even more mainstream role models, such as Yasser Arafat's wife, who lives in a multimillion-dollar residence in Paris, has said that if she had a son, she would want him to become a suicide bomber because there is no greater honor than to become a martyr.


Young children, some as young as 12 and 13, are incited and seduced into strapping bombs around themselves by these older and better-educated elitist leaders. The children are promised virgins in heaven, praise and money for their families here on Earth, and posters portraying them as rock stars. It is an irresistible combination for some, and the blame lies squarely at the feet of the elitists who exploit them, use them, and eventually kill them.


There is absolutely no evidence to support the claim of a direct relationship between occupation and suicide bombing. If anything, occupation makes it more difficult to launch successful terrorist attacks. This is not to argue for occupation; it is to separate the arguments regarding occupation from the claim that it is the fact of occupation, and the oppression it brings, that causes suicide bombing.


Indeed, were Israel to end its occupation of Gaza and most of the West Bank (as I have long believed it should), it is likely that terrorism would actually increase as terrorist commanders secure more freedom to plan and implement terrorist actions. The same might well be true in Iraq, were the United States to pick up and run.


The time has come to address the real root cause of suicide bombing: elitist incitement by certain religious and political leaders who are creating a culture of death and exploiting the ambiguous teachings of an important religion.


Abu Hamza — the cleric who tutored Richard Reid, the convicted shoe bomber — recently urged a large crowd to embrace death. Islamic young people are in love with death, claim some influential imams; but it is these leaders who are arranging the marriages between the children and the bomb belts.


Perhaps, now that suicide bombers have attacked Saudi Arabia, responsible Islamic leaders will better understand that it is their people who will be the ultimate victims of this tactically imposed culture of death.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in Washington and in the media consider "must reading." Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

Harvard law professor Alan Dershowitz's most recent book is "The Case for Israel." (To purchase, click HERE. Sales help fund JWR.) Comment by clicking here.


© 2004, Alan Dershowitz