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Honoring Terror By: Itamar Marcus
Palestinian Media Watch | Friday, October 03, 2003

A major soccer tournament glorifying arch terrorists is underway in the Palestinian Authority [PA]. While terrorist glorification is not unusual in the PA, this tournament is striking because it is sponsored very prominently by the heads of the PA, including Yasser Arafat; Saib Arikat; Gibril Rajoub; the Minister of Sport - Abdul Fatach Hamal; the Mufti of the PA Ikrama Sabri; and 10 other senior PA officials.

Each of the 24 soccer teams is named for a terrorist or other Shahid [the term of supreme honor designating "Martyrs" - those who died in the combat with Israel] including some of the most infamous murderers. Among those honored are Yechya Ayash, the first Hamas bomb-belt engineer, who initiated the suicide bombings; Dalal Mughrabi, a terrorist woman who hijacked a bus killing 36 in 1978; Abu Ali Mustafa, the Head of the Terrorist Popular Front; Az Adin Al Kassam, the name of the suicide bombers' wing of the Hamas; Raid Carmi, Commander of the Suicide Bomber wing of Fatah, the Al Aqsa Brigades, in Tul Karem; Hassan Salame, Black September terror group, involved in the Olympic massacre of Israeli athletes; Abu Jihad, PLO leader; Thabit Thabit, Head of the Tanzim terror group in Tul Karem; Jamal Mansour of Hamas; Salah Khalif, PLO leader; Salah Drowza of Hamas; Kamal Adwan PLO leader. [Al Ayyam, Sept. 21, 2003]

Presenting terrorists as heroes and role models is common practice in the PA. In January PMW reported on the soccer tournament for 12- year- old boys named after Abd Al Baset Odeh, the suicide terrorist who killed 30 at the Passover Seder in April 2002.

As stated, this event is significant as Yasser Arafat and 13 PA leaders have prominently put their names behind this. In addition, it is at the very time the PA is actively courting world leaders to continue promoting the Road Map, based on the premise that the PA has reformed and now rejects terrorism.

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