|28 March 2002|
|There are many reasons why people despise Israel. It is Jewish; it is an island of liberal democracy in a sea of dictatorships; it is an ally of the U.S.; it defies the edicts of the UN.|
On October 29, 1956, because of the Sinai War, the curfew on Israeli Arab villages near the Jordanian border was moved forward from 9 P.M. to 5 P.M. This decision was made after the villagers left for work that day, so they were unaware of it.|
That evening, in the village of Kafr Kasem, the first workers to return were four men on bicycles. They were halted by the Israeli border police. When they identified themselves, the Israeli police opened fire. Two died at once; two survived by pretending to be dead.
Soon after, a wagon came with an Arab and his young daughter, followed by two men and a boy on foot. The children were permitted to pass into the village. One of the men, seeing the bodies of the first Arabs, asked, "Why do you want to shoot us?" He was told to "shut up." Then the three men were shot.
As others returned to the village, some were arbitrarily permitted to enter unharmed; others were just as arbitrarily murdered. By the end of the evening, forty-three Israeli Arabs were dead, including seven children and ten women. None of this happened in the heat of battle; Israelis simply stood at the entrance to a peaceful village and decided who shall live and who shall die. Some victims were killed while they lay wounded on the ground. One man was shot from behind after he was given permission to enter the village.
Roberta Strauss Feuerlicht, The Fate of the Jews: A People Torn Between Israeli Power and Jewish Ethics, Times Books, New York, 1983, p. 252.