Palestinian Media Watch recently exposed that many Palestinians interviewed on the street by Awdah TV oppose children’s participation in terrorism and exposed that media incitement stands behind the phenomenon. Following the publication of the report, JerusalemOnline interviewed Palestinian Jordanian dissident Mudar Zahran, who stressed that the Knife Intifada was planned by the Hashemites and Abu Mazen, who both seek to distract their publics in order to prevent their downfall and both of them are to blame for all of the violence, not the brainwashed 14-year-old teenage terrorists: “If our people get a pro-peace common sense leadership, things could change. In a dictatorship, you are not allowed to think.”

Mudar Zahran

Mudar Zahran Photo Credit: Facebook

According to Palestinian Media Watch, the Fatah-run Awdah TV recently interviewed Palestinians in the street, asking them what they thought of the fact that in recent times, more and more teenage boys and girls have been waging terror attacks. Most of the Palestinians interviewed in the program stated that they opposed children participating in terrorism due to their principals while a few opposed it because they viewed it to be ineffective. For the program, 8 Palestinian citizens plus 2 Palestinian teachers were interviewed.  Out of all of the interviewees, only one Palestinian spoke out in favor of children’s participation in terrorism.

The first Palestinian interviewed referred to the children as victims: “The children are deprived of everything considered children’s entertainment. For our children, unfortunately their entertainment is the weapon.” A Palestinian school teacher proclaimed: “As a teacher, I believe that you have to sow love of knowledge in the child; that is the most important.” Another Palestinian citizen proclaimed: “The children need to learn and to live their lives, to go to school and to play.”

All of the Palestinians interviewed blame incitement within Palestinian television for the recent phenomenon of children waging terror attacks: “It confuses the children when they see these things. I prevent my children from watching what is happening on TV. It confuses them and causes them to want to do this.” Another Palestinian proclaimed that PA TV encourages Palestinian children to take to the streets while a Palestinian teacher declared: “I think that the media plays a large role. Especially our TV channels. Even when the situation has calmed down a little, you see that there are broadcasters among us and known satellite channels that begin to incite. Even if the incitement is indirect, it is incitement. You feel that the child does not know what to do. Unfortunately.”

Sadly, the full video of this interview is no longer available on Youtube because Palestinian Media Watch’s Youtube account has been shut down. All of the Facebook pages calling to murder Jews are still up and running but an NGO that translated a video clip of average Palestinians speaking out against children’s participation in terrorism was kicked off Youtube. Nevertheless, the full interview in print version is available on the Palestinian Media Watch website.

Following the publication of this report, JerusalemOnline interviewed Palestinian Jordanian dissident Mudar Zahran, who blamed the present phenomenon of children partaking in terror attacks on a “well-organized, well-financed, carefully planned and professionally executed incitement campaign.” According to Zahran, the Palestinian Authority is plagued by corruption and yet, Palestinian leaders like Abu Mazen always prompt their people including the children to look to Israel as the reason for all of their suffering: “Then the Arab Spring began and the dictators started to fall. Among the most eligible for a fall are Abu Mazen and Jordan’s king. Now since the Arab Spring began, both Abu Mazen and the king wanted something to deter the people.” According to Zahran, this is the real reason for the present wave of terror known as the Knife Intifada.

According to Zahran, PA TV and the other PA publications are not the only ones inciting the Palestinians to wage violent terror attacks against Israelis as the Jordanian media does likewise: “Regarding promoting hatred of Jews, the Jordanian media is the most capable and advanced. They are able to influence Palestinians at home. Palestinians follow Jordanian media closely. For example, Royaa TV is watched constantly in the West Bank and has more influence than PA TV. That TV station promotes killing Jews. I warned a year and a half ago that Abu Mazen and Jordan’s king were going to launch an intifada and that it was going to be in Jerusalem. Now, it is true. Last June, when there was no Intifada, the Jordanian media was calling for ‘expanding the stab a Jew concept and mimicking it.’ The Israeli Embassy protested twice. Let me sum this up. This is the fault and making of two allied regimes, the Palestinian Authority and the Hashemites.”

Meanwhile, any Palestinian who chooses to stand up to Abu Mazen’s  or the Jordanian King’s corruption instead of focusing all of their energies upon scapegoating Israel ends up persecuted. Zahran himself was sentenced to life imprisonment for standing up to the Hashemite regime’s corruption and incitement. Emad Tarifi, the son of a PLO co-founder who now supports peace and is opposed to the Knife Intifada, is constantly harassed by the Hashemites and even had his restaurant shut down by the authorities for no apparent reason.

According to a recent report published by the Gatestone Institute, Palestinian legislator Najat Abu Bakr is hunted after by Abu Mazen merely for standing up to Palestinian Authority corruption. She literally cannot leave the Parliament building due to the fear that she will be arrested. While everyone around the world knows who Haneen Zoabi is and some are critical of her being relatively lightly punished for supporting terrorism, very few know about Najat Abu Bakr, much less the unjust fate that she has endured merely for seeking a corruption-free Palestinian Authority. They are both female legislators; one lives in a free democracy and has the right to speak out against her country while the other one is living in a dictatorship where freedom of speech is a foreign concept, even for legislators: “She is anti-Abbas and Abbas wants her in trouble.” In fact, Zahran compared life within the Palestinian Authority to George Orwell’s novel 1984.

Zahran believes that unless Abu Mazen and Jordan’s King are removed from power and even legally punished, this present wave of terror known as the Knife Intifada will continue: “Let’s be honest. The 14-year-olds stabbing Jews did not make their decisions logically. If any Israeli Jew was brought up brainwashed to kill and stab Arabs, he or she will do what our kids are doing. A change of leadership in Jordan and the West Bank can make the entire difference.”

It is well-known that Zahran is leading a political movement to topple the Hashemites and even has a shadow government in place that is ready to take over administering Jordan the second that the King falls but I told Zahran that nothing like that exists in the West Bank yet most Israelis don’t want to govern the entire West Bank but we might not have a choice unless a good Palestinian replacement could be found for Abu Mazen. In response, Zahran replied that if he succeeds the King, his potential government would be willing to pay for the education, healthcare and legal certifications of West Bank residents but that even a Jordan under his rule would not be interested in placing boots on the ground in the West Bank. When asked if Palestinian human rights activist Bassem Eid could potentially replace Abu Mazen, Zahran replied: “Bassem Eid is a freedom fighter but I don’t think he wants a political position.”

Zahran then pondered: “But why isn’t the world helping someone like Eid own a TV channel in Arabic to counter the terror? Why can’t the world and the Arab countries open up a real Palestinian newspaper or TV station for someone like Bassem Eid? This is where global peace makers come into play. Please understand that Bassem is one knife attack away from death.”

However, even though Zahran believes that things can improve once Abu Mazen goes if a good replacement can be found, he noted that peace won’t happen magically overnight: “Sadly, most of the people in the West Bank have been inclined towards attacks and hatred. This has been caused by a good two decades of brainwashing by two regimes, the Palestinian Authority and Jordan.” In other words, the Palestinians who spoke out against children becoming terrorists represent a minority and not most of Palestinian society but there will be improvements  the second that the leadership changes: “People in Arab societies follow the goodwill of their leaders and follow a tribal mindset of we do as the leader says. So yes, if our people get a pro-peace common sense leadership, things could change. In a dictatorship, you are not allowed to think.”

In order to illustrate how the media in totalitarian dictatorships operates, Zahran noted that the Jordanian media outlets all claimed that the Independent ran a story that asserted: “We all need to learn a lesson in humbleness from the Jordanian king.” According to the Independent, they never published anything of the sort about the Jordanian king but numerous Jordanian media outlets claim that they did. Zahran stated that he can provide a full list of examples where he caught the Jordanian King lying. For example, Toyota asserted that over 4,500 trucks that were sold to Jordan ended up in ISIS’s hands but the King claims it is not so. CNN claims that the Jordanian king helped ISIS launder money but the King denies the allegation. The King claimed that he created a global warming program that was agreed upon by 200 countries at the Paris Global Warming Conference but no such program has in fact been created. These are only a small sample of the examples given by Zahran.

Zahran asserted that the PA operates no differently: “Recently, the PA media outlets announced that they will get 78 million dollars from Japan but the actual figure is 780 million dollars.” I asked Zahran if the PA deliberately downsized the amount of money that the PA receives from Japan in their public announcement so that certain PA officials could pocket Japanese money without appearing suspicious. Zahran did not answer my question but said the following: “It is the same with the king’s media, who claimed that they get 840 million euros from Germany when it turned out they already got that amount over the last two years. It is called living under a dictatorship.”