“The shahid is honored throughout the history of nations. He is the one who blazed the trail for us. No value is more noble than martyrdom," Knesset Member Ahmad Tibi waxed poetic a few days ago on the occasion of “Palestinian Martyr Day.” Of course, he did not forget to present the obvious flip-side, whereby in Israel “the real terrorist murderer is considered a hero or a minister.”
Immediately after that, Tibi made sure to make it clear to all his fans that "Israelis are ignorant with regards to the term 'shahid' and misunderstand it. It refers to anyone who was killed by the occupation for the homeland or died for a national cause." That is, there is the active, bogus type of martyr, who seeks to slaughter as many Jews as he can. Then there is the real martyr, the passive, noble type, the most amazing and glorious of all human beings, which only incurable Israeli ignorance fails to appreciate.
Former Palestinian leader Arafat apparently only referred to them, the passive martyrs, when he spoke of Shahids, just like his former advisor Tibi, who did the same while serving in Israel’s Knesset.
The Talmud says that when a person keeps repeating an offence, it’s as though he receives permission to keep doing it. And so, Mr. Tibi can praise the qualities of the martyr while at most prompting weak journalistic protest, and then go back to that same Israeli media in the role of Dr. Tibi and express his amazement about the very question regarding his right to endorse Shahids.
Tibi can also slam others as if he was the lowliest chauvinist, while hurling crude sexual hints at MK Anastasia Michaeli, and at the best prompt a minor reprimand from the media and from various women’s rights groups, which on normal days would harshly slam any harm done to women, by certain men that is.
Similarly, Hanin Zoabi and other Arab parliamentarians can put their trust in the guardians of Israeli democracy in the media, High Court, academia and the cultural world every time they write a forward to venomous anti-Semitic books, as Zoabi just did in her forward to anti-Semitic British writer Ben White’s book. These Arab MKs also board various Gaza-bound ships or visit Hamas leaders or enlightened Arab rulers such as Gaddafi, may he rest in peace.
Indeed, Arab MKs use these opportunities to talk about Israeli injustice, the apartheid regime adopted there, and the racism that has spread everywhere. Mostly, they explain in their visits to such models of democracy like Hamas or Libya how un-democratic Israel is.
Still, we’ll always find the good Jews among us who will keep explaining to us that the involvement of Arab Israelis in terror, their hugely disproportionate share of crimes (in 2011, Arabs were involved in 67% of murders in Israel,) illegal construction or road accidents is all our doing. We are the ones who sinned and mistreated the Arabs. We are the ones at fault, rather than Tibi, Zoabi, or any other Arab victim.